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About Etoille

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  1. Well the newspapers do like to include terms like that for click-bait, but it wasn't deliberate on my part! It just happened to be included in the URL. Annoyingly, the webcam in our car did not record this particular journey..... although it did record the one before and the one after it!
  2. The local newspaper is carrying a report on it now: http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/news/leicester-news/what-green-ufo-flew-across-995139 Nice clip here too: https://twitter.com/mkempson/status/947674834263306241/video/1 (Not sure why my post is coming up as 'hidden'? How do I unhide it?)
  3. Sorry, I did have a look before posting, but I didn't spot the other topic.
  4. We were travelling back from Hinckley to Newbold Verdon and about 2-3 miles North of Hinckley on the Ashby Road (A447) and we saw it too. A very bright and large glowing object with a bright long translucent tail (perhaps 3 or 4 moon diameters long) streaking across the sky westwards. To us it looked bright green and was traveling pretty much horizontally at high speed and what seemed a moderate but not exceptionally high altitude. It faded as it passed above a patch of cloud before reaching the far horizon. Approximate time of sighting (car clock) was around 17:33hrs. We didn't observe it breaking up though. Anything man-made expected to fall towards earth and burn around this time? Any scheduled rocket launches that might have failed? Or just a big meteor?
  5. Just been travelling back from Hinckley to Newbold Verdon and about 2-3 miles North of Hinckley on the Ashby Road (A447) we observed, through the car windscreen in front of us, a very bright and large glowing object with a bright long translucent tail (perhaps 3 or 4 moon diameters long) streaking across the sky from right to left (westwards?). To me it looked white but since I have colour issues with my sight I accept my wife's assertion that it was, in fact, bright green. The object was traveling pretty much horizontally at high speed and what seemed a moderate but not exceptionally high altitude and faded as it passed above a patch of cloud before reaching the far horizon. Approximate time of sighting was around 17:33hrs. Anyone else see this? Anything man-made expected to fall towards earth and burn around this time?
  6. I've seen some shoddy specimens in charity shops and market places, but these really do take the biscuiit!
  7. Well I must be very fortunate! I picked up a Seagull angle finder last week for £1 from a closing photography store. I notice they are going for £39 on Amazon so that's the second amazing bargain in as many weeks! Don't know whether this is a step up from the Op though. There is also an Opteka one and both come up when you search on 'Seagull angle finder'.
  8. Well it cleared again so by 11.30pm I had the chance to try them out. Since the sky was not fully dark, it was difficult to make a proper comparison. However, I was able to make at least a brief comparison with my 8x42 Minox roof prism and an 11x70 Opticron porro. The view through the Steiner was significantly brighter than through the Minox, but the difference was less significant with the Opticron, although I think the Steiner still had the edge. The Minox generally yeild pinpoint stars but tend to produce a slight flaring on brighter stars which I understand is because of their roof prism design. Although a porro, the Opticron also have a similar problem which I think is down to a slight bit of astigmatism - they seem to flare slightly in one direction with left and right flaing at right angles so you can never quite get a true pinpoint on very bright objects although its not noticeable on the feinter ones. However, with the Steiner, after carefull focussing, even the brighter stars appeared to be pinpoint sharp with no siginficant distortion. Saturn also seemed clearer than through either of the other bins, although with a mag of x7 it was never likely to show its rings. Objects do soften at the very edge of the field of view but I guess this is to be expected and not really a problem. The field of view seemed somewhat wider then the 8x42 but not much so. Overall first light left me with a favourable impression. Need to wait now for a proper dark night.
  9. Wel in the 10 minutes or so that I've been sat at the computer its cloded over! Guess the bins attract them too then!
  10. Yes, to confirm that was £60 and not £600. The only explanation I can think of is that they are not the preferred 8x40/42 compact roof prism style preferred by the average birder, so perhaps they didn't sell in that market hence they let them go at a silly price to clear. Rather timely, we also seem to have a clear night tonight so assuming nothing changes I might be able to try them out in a short while. Perhaps the cloud phenomenon only happens with telescopes?
  11. Having paid the £10 postage (hence £600 total) I was please to find that they arrived this morning. I’ve had a little time to have a look at them this afternoon and I’m pleasantly surprised! They do appear to be genuine and came well packed complete with the original box which was placed inside another shipping box along with plenty of padding. The objectives and eyepieces are free from any marks or scratches and there is hardly any noticeable wear on the rubber armouring with the Steiner logo and other markings being completely intact. There is a serial number stamped on the round plate at the front that also that holds the objective lens covers in place. The lens covers are also embossed with the Steiner logo along with the words ‘Made in Germany’. The words 'Made in Germany' also appear on one of the eyepiece barrels. The eyepieces are individually focussing and the exit pupils appear to be well rounded for the most part but do show a slight bit of clipping. A look through the objectives shows some vignetting and the view through the eyepieces does show a little bit of softening around the edges but this is not too distracting. This was not entirely unexpected as this problem was also commented on in a review on allbinos.com of the more expensive Commander binos. Looking through the objectives down both barrels I noticed some spots and marks which to my dismay at first appeared to be on the internal optics. As it turned out though, a closer inspection revealed that this was actually being reflected from the external surface of the eyepieces. To my delight, a couple of drops of Baader Optical Wonder fluid later the problem was gone leaving a perfectly clean view through the optics. Having tweaked both eyepieces to my eyesight I find that the view through the binoculars is clear and slightly brighter than my Minox 8x42’s although the latter might just have the edge slightly on sharpness. Having said that the view is nice and sharp with just a little softening around the edges although this is not distracting and seems related to eye positioning as well as perhaps the slight vignetting mentioned earlier. The optics seem to be well collimated as there is no trace of ghosting or doubling up of the image. The binoculars have a reassuring weight but are quite chunky although confortable to hold. They also came with a nice comfortable neckstrap. I have yet to try them under the night sky but on first inspection I am very happy with this purchase!
  12. We did ours for the learning experience rather than academic stepping stone and we paid by installments. We also learned an awfull lot as well as refreshed some of our Math sklills! This is probably not the cheapest option but it does allow you to spread the cost by paying in installments and stop after one or two lessons if its now to your liking. We completed the course, which is via distance learning, using this provider: http://www.theplanet...d_enrolment.htm One point to note is the exams. We decided to sit them and found at the time that we had to take them at a local school/colledge which required us to first find a school/colledge locally that was willing to invigilate the exam. If you do find one that is willing to do this for an external candidate, there will be a charge for this service and the fees will vary depending on the institution. After some ringing around we did find one that was reasonable and both of us passed our exams. That was 3-4 years ago now and this may have changed, but if you do wish to sit the exams at the end of the course it may be worth checking with the provider you choose what the process is and costs involved.
  13. Whereas I would usually prefer to view them first, I've taken the risk and bought them. Will be interesting to see what arrives.... Will update the thread when they do and I've had a chance to have a good look at them.
  14. All I know is that the seller is a reputable, established binnocular and spotting scope outlet and this item is in their used section and the image shows the original box as well. The description states they are 'nearly mint'. If it was a BIN on eBay then I would agree with you that its probably a scam and steer clear. Evidently the Rallye (their description states Rally - but the box and binnocular clearly show Rallye) are closer to the basic Navigator rather than the more expensive Commander so thanks for clearing that up. But (assuming they are genuine) would they likely be better than your average chinese import (Bushnell, Bresser etc)? I'm wonderning now whether they perhaps missed the '1' off the 50! You have to wonder whats wrong with them. For example could they describe them as 'nearly mint' even if they are out of collimation? Not sure whether to call them or whether just to buy them!
  15. Although I cannot be sure its the same issue, this sounds very much like a similar problem I had with my Skywatcher Flextube from the factory. I could collimate the secondary with the primary and get the laser spot bang in the centre (I was using a laser collimator), try as hard as I might, I couldn't get the textbook view with everything including the primary clips perfectly centered from the edges of the outer circle as per the classic pictures. the scope seemed to work OK as it was but it still bothered me. I tried carefully adjusting the secondary (dropping it onto the primary would be a catastrpophic mistake - therefore keep the scope horizontal for this!) up and down along its axis and rotating left/right and also checking the tension on the spider vanes but there seemed to be no adjustment that could place the clips where they should be - evently spaced from the sides of the outer circle. Eventually following some advice I adjusted the focusser by carefull tweaking of the adjustment grub screws. This paid off as eventually I did get that textbook view with everything properly centered. Without a photo though, it is difficult to tell exactly where the problem lies and I would check everything else first but it could be that although the secondary is in perfect aligment with the primary, and the secondary is perfectly positioned in relation to the tube and focuser (i.e. in the center of the tube and at the appropriate position down from the vanes, the focusser itself might not be quite fully in alignment with the secondary, i.e. not being perfectly at right angles to the tube/secondary, either because its not correctly seated on the tube or simply requires adjustment in relation to its base plate. If you can post a pic at some point it might help others to diagnose the problem. Do you not have a camera on your phone?
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