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Everything posted by Qualia

  1. Not too sure, Jules but maybe something like a I 90mm Mak or C5 for quick views and traveling would be an idea . I imagine size would be fine even for a photo tripod, views would be sharp at 125x, or so and cool down would be pretty much a non issue with those size scopes. An APO or triplet would also be really nice but I'm not convinced it would be a very good idea. Sure, the scope's ergonomics, quality and wide-field views would be stunning and great for grab n go, but they aren't particularly light and in my own case, I only feel comfortable with the TV 76 on something like an AZ4. The
  2. Lovely sketches and thank you for sharing them with us. A useful link to identify what moons of Saturn may be possible for a give night can be found here. Look forward to seeing more sketches, CC
  3. I have the 10mm and 14mm Delos and they really are gorgeous eyepieces. They're like using widefield orthos, with all the quality, sharpness and resolution but spread across 72º rather than a mere 40º field of view. Plug into that generous eye relief and a tasty ergonomic feel and you really can't go wrong A couple of years back I wrote a short review of the 10mm which you may find of interest. Even after all this time the opinion and sentiments have not changed. However, it's not all good news, for as noted in that review the Delos does carry its own draw backs: "There is one significant prob
  4. It's a great idea and I really look forward to the 1st edition I feel there's no need to make it too complicated for yourself. You know, like levels of difficulty, for I imagine not all the objects recommended would have been seen before hand? If it does come together, time and weather permitting in September, I'd gladly share my reports and sketches for comparison etc. +1 for what Stu has also mentioned. I think it would be nice to see if you and Nick could get a tasty list together for all of us interested to work on
  5. Sounds like you had a good birthday, Shaun and I'm so glad to hear about your brother. That really is tip-top news and worth carrying on the celebrations for a little while longer In a peculiar way, I have a little bit of you all the way over here. I mean I have all those good vibes and care you've given the Lunt I use, so I've raised a glass to you in person and sent you and your family the best wishes I can. May the force be with you and your bro, Shaun and Happy Birthday
  6. I really don't appreciate it but thank you so much for your kind support and warm words. It's encourage like this that not only makes one want to do and be better but what makes SGL such a lovely place. Thank you again - - - - Luke, Spain is such a vast country - I think it's about x5 bigger than England (not the UK) the distance from east to west similar to London to Prague - and is the second most mountainous in Europe. Under such conditions, the weather can be significantly different from one region to another but on average I think Spain has about twice as many clear days than the UK. How
  7. If possible my own plan is to simply strengthen my knowledge of the night sky. Nothing profound, but the general idea is to simply remember the names a few more of the brighter stars, to pick out the constellations with ease and be able to point my scope at a section of sky and find a few more of the night sky wonders without the need of a star atlas. To be honest, I think my dependency on the maps have softened my brain a little and in time I would just like to swoop and dive around the skies without relying on it so much.
  8. Hiya Bish, I sometimes use a Baader Microguide and you can find a little write up here which you may find useful. They're not that easy to use on an undriven mount but knowing a few numbers before hand, you do get an idea of size of objects, estimated separation and position angle of double and the such. Drop me a PM if you need any extra info
  9. Brilliant report and sessions, Stu. Amazing stuff. I think I'm going to print out your list and use it myself when the Moon settles down a little.
  10. By all accounts, Spain has suffered one of the worst summers in last twenty years or so. There's been a lot of cloud, general mugginess, storms and for many regions, uncomfortable fluctuations in temperatures. Thankfully, under such frustating circumstances I haven't been here that much over the past two months. However, arriving in Spain near the beginning of this week things are beginning to look up; clear blue skies day and night and a reasonable temperature at this time of year. The Sun has been putting on a rather spectacular display and never two days are the same. It's amazing to think
  11. For general DSO observing I use Delos 14mm & 10mm. These offer 2.8mm and 2mm, 0.8º and 0.5º TFOV respectively. If I want to power them up I use a TeleVue x2 Barlow. Having used them for a number of years, I can also see the virtue in getting something like a 13mm Ethos and then for higher powers perhaps an 8mm Delos or 7mm XW. Expensive, but these type of things should last a very long time. As James suggests, Baader's Genuine Orthos are also cracking eyepieces. I have managed to build a set over the years and with the 10" love using the higher powers on planetary, lunar and double stars.
  12. Not really aimed at a 10" in particular but I have found the following to be the best way to snare those subtle DSOs. i) Get yourself a decent star map. I find Star Atlas by Sky and Telescope indispensable. It's not that expensive, it's a piece of art in itself and it is extremely useful. ii) It might not be necessary, but if you haven't got one, upgrade to a bigger view finder. I have found that Skywatcher's 9x50mm is the business and it ought to be the right angled correct image one. It will deliver stars down to about magnitude 8, even if you're in a LP area, meaning you’ll be able to see
  13. Cracking weather now in Spain Looks like the muggy summer skies are easing off just a little.
  14. I've done a fair bit of solar observing and binocular work but no grand sessions this month. To be honest, August hasn't been than great weather wise. Not in Spain where I live, in the UK where I visited family for a good number of weeks, or on holiday in Italy. There was quite a lot of muggy, cloudy weather which has upset this summer a fair bit.
  15. Good to be back. I promise to reply to all posts etc over the next day or so. I hope everyone had a good August :-)

    1. Show previous comments  6 more
    2. Qualia


      Thank you all for your kind words. It really is nice to be back and to see such warm and tender folk. Thank you :-)

    3. Pig


      Welcome back Mr Gough

    4. Piero


      A warm welcome back, Rob! :)

  16. Another lovely report, Piero and should be an inspiration to many. Great to hear you had a good time in Italy. By sheer coincident, I was just a little south from you in Rome for almost two weeks this August but needless to say the trip was about really necessary family time, so didn't do any observing .
  17. Cracking report, Piero and thank you for sharing it. Although I've been a little busy recently, I've also had the time to do a bit of observing, the only let down it seems it that the skies really get decent around full Moon time. Oh well, such is life .
  18. Mars is a fascinating planet to observe but nothing is given in astronomy, especially when it comes to viewing Mars. Jupiter is about three times the size of Mars and to see Jupiter with a significant amount of detail, we need around 160x to 200x magnification which means that to get a similar view of Mars, we’ll need an outrageous 600x. As impressive as that sounds, we are never going to get the kind of viewing quality that can allow for this type of power. 99% of Earth’s atmosphere lies in a layer about 30km thick and you’re at the bottom of it looking up. Adding to this problem is the fact
  19. For general DSO viewing, I feel you don't need more than three eyepieces. For my 10" f5, for example, I generally observe and sketch with wide field (72º) eyepieces offering around 50x, 90x and 125x. Coupled to a decent Barlow (or Powermate), you've then got 50x, 90x, 100x, 125x, 180x and 250x which should suffice for most clusters, galaxies, nebulae, and general lunar and planetary work. If it took your fancy, for white light solar viewing the 50x will also be ideal and all you'll need is Baader's Visual Solar Film from First Light Optics which is extremely effective and cheap. If you decide
  20. Hiya Sam, A Newtonian reflector of around 8 or 10 inches on a Dobsonian mount is in my opinion the ideal visual scope to own. Such instruments balance the compromises between budget, investigating the night sky and just as importantly, not being too big to handle or store. As such, for me, a 10" Dob is the perfect balance between price, aperture and portability. I have had a 10” truss Dob for the last three years or so and I have not even begun to master all that it has to offer. That said they aren't without draw backs. A 10" scope tends to be fast, so will be more demanding on cheaper eyepie
  21. Hiya Craig, You could measure it directly by timing the transit of a star across the full field of view. Here is a little guide on how to go about it. The general acceptance of the RACI’s field of view is somewhere between 5 to 5.6 degrees but it is worth pointing out that the often quoted FOV and actual FOV aren't always the same thing, so maybe 5.6 in theory means 5.1 in practice.
  22. Piero, the listing information below includes Messier objects, NGC wonders, and Double Star gems which I think are well worth taking a shot at even if the possibility of success isn't always going to be 100%. I apologise if I've repeated much of what you're already aiming for but I figured I'd give a possible Summer List that's easy to cut, paste and print Unless directed otherwise the listing will be set out as follows: Target Name; Constellation; Type of Object; Level of Subjective Difficulty 1 (relatively easy) to 4 (very difficult). The Messier List M 13: Hercules Globular Cluster 1 M
  23. All things considered, that's brilliant going, John. I've been in the UK this week and appreciate that it hasn't been the easiest of times to do a serious bit of observing. Top marks and I look forward to another report soon
  24. Not so much as tips, but just a quick message to say I hope you have a great first night and light It'll be a good idea to align the scope and finder in the day time and practice aiming and focusing. Fixed objects are easier to find during the day and don't drift out of view. A little practice at this and you'll be well prepared before you first light. Another good idea is to get hold of a decent star atlas and download Stellarium to check out what some of the constellations and brighter stars will be when you're out. An hour or so before observing, leave the scope out to cool to air temper
  25. Just as the other members have suggested, many people - myself included - store their scopes in garages, sheds, lock ups without a worry but dust can be a big problem, so plastic shower caps or something similar for both ends to protect your scope from dust, moisture, and bugs is a good idea. Within reason, temperatures shouldn't hurt your scope either but do let it cool down or warm up to the outside air temperature an hour or so before observing. I store my own truss dob in a room which during the summer reaches quite unpleasant temperatures and I have yet to note any ill affect. Carrying
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