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About Alfian

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    Sub Dwarf

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  • Interests
    Astronomy, Walking, MotoGP, WWII aircraft history.
  • Location
    SW Scotland
  1. An interesting one. The AZ4 with steel legged tripod, which is definitely worth having over the aluminium item) is quite a substantial mount. It does not have slomo controls so you have to nudge it or steer it manually. I found with a telescope that has some length or bulk to it (4" F9 refractor/ 6" f5 reflector) this is easy and not a problem. Lighter scopes need a more delicate touch. This is down to the AZ4s friction bearings suffering a lttle bit of "stiction". Its not a problem as such and with a minor strip down, cleaning and regreasing with a quality teflon based grease can be noteably improved. All in all though the az4s a good mount. I've not used the AZ5 mount but it has had some good reviews and it has slomo controls. I do have another mount (Avant) with the same tripod and extension. It is much lighter than the AZ4 and I would not want to use it with the scopes mentioned above. That said it would probably work fine with the shorter 4"startravel. There is always the possibilty of upgrading to the steel legged tripod with the 3/8ths fitting if you want something better. The az5 tripod still makes a useful photo tripod. If you plan at some time to get a larger scope like a 150p then I'd go for the az4. If you are happy to stay with the Startravel or smaller scopes then I'd go with az5.
  2. I like refractors and a 90mm f10 (900mm) achromat makes for a very capable scope for anyone let alone a young starter. Pretty much bullet proof and easy on eyepieces too. My concern here is that they often come with inadequate mounts and usefully need a decent altaz mount (az4?) or an eq3/2 if an EQ mount is preferred. This bumps the budget up. I've had a Heritage 130p mini dob and although the mount is very simple and the helical focuser very basic the whole thing works surprisingly well. Optically it turns in a very respectable performance and for this it seems to have gained a small army of fans! With respect to "limited collimation" I have a little 114mm f4.3 reflector with a fixed primary and just the secondary adjustable - not what would have thought an ideal thing, however in practice it not a problem and the 'scope holds its collimation well and like the Heritage 130p it performs much better than I for one would have expected. Life is full of surprises! The upshot of this is that with a limited budget, and especially with a nod to how portable and easily storable the scope is I'd also recommend the Heritage 130p or equivalent. Any spare cash needs to go on a couple of plossl type eyepieces.
  3. Heck, thats sad news. The unfortunate thing is that the 100r focuser and diagonal is something of a bespoke item and not easily replaced, mind you, Tals are solidly engineered and maybe if you know someone with engineering skills they can get it corrected.
  4. Its a nice problem ti have but there are so many flavours (distros) of linux to choose from now, its only by playing with a few that you get one that suits all your needs and is reliably fully functional. For me these last few years has been MX linux but I've had a play with Zorin recently and although it has a slightly bare bones look to it, its actually pretty good.
  5. Well done that man! The 130EQ focuser illustrated doesn't get any better than that. I suspect the missing item is the one in the bottom red square. If the thread on the focuser tube is a male T2 then its an easy fix but from memory I think the thread is coarser than that and may be a different size altogether. When I had mine, I contemplated changing the focuser but on the Celestron, with its cosmetic plastic trim, its not quite that simple. Not an impossible job but I decided not to bother and upgraded to another 'scope. In terms of spare parts Astroboot are useful but at the moment are closed for refurbishment. A bit of a long shot but a wanted ad' on this forum might come up with something. good luck.
  6. A useful idea to work with is exit pupil size, that is the aperture divided by magnification. Your 250p (1200) with say a 20mm EP will give 60x and this will give just over a 4mm exit pupil. An eyepiece yielding 300x will give 0.83mm exit pupil. I find with my slightly aging eyes that anything much below 0.5mm and I run into problems with seeing floaters but by this time the image is notiecably dimming. The point here is that pushing magnification to the max is not always a good thing and in terms of seeing detail although object image size is smaller, often less is more so to speak. That said for a scope like yours with a sizeable aperture pushing magnification to 300x (+) is more likely to be limited by conditions and in practice will be significantly less. The good news is that with all that aperture DSO hunting should be rewarding.
  7. The 130EQ is 1.25" (only) focuser. Casting my mind back to when I had a 130EQ I think the part you might be referring to the eyepiece holder that screws onto the focuser tube. If that is so all you will have at the moment is the end male threaded section. Is that so?
  8. Yes, I've found that in SW Scotland there is little point in looking at forecasts beyond a couple of days. Even very locally it can be pouring with rain in one place and just a few miles down the road its dry all day. Depending on where the prevailing weather is coming from its often funneled through the hills leaving the coast with better conditions, ie you get a local micro climate. I hope very much it stays good for you all.
  9. Do you think that possibly the Tals might have gone back to the iron age? They have that rugged rustic feel to them. No flourite though!
  10. Indeed. I'm currently on the opposite side of the Cree estuary, rain has abated to that fine stuff thats blowing hard in the wind. Sun is trying to break through and there's a rainbow. Forecast for the week though is not so bad apart from lower temperatures
  11. Maybe the earliest form of "Clearoutside"? That feeling of being lost in wonder is something that strikes at soul level and add to that the dimension how it links us directly to our ancestors, its a powerful humanity definining emotional experience. There's always the possibilty I could be talking twaddle but thats how I see it!
  12. From memories of my 130EQ days the 20mm eyepiece is an erecting eyepiece provided for terrestrial use. Why Celestron would choose to do this is a mystety to me. Why would anyone buy a130EQ for terrestrial purposes? Marketing I guess. The erecting eyepiece design compromises it for astronomical use. Although it means spending more money, buying plossl eyepieces improves things noticeably. I would also echo the comments above about atmospheric conditions which make a big difference. Also, viewing planets when they are low down, which effectively exagerates poor conditions further, isn't going to yield good views.
  13. Great write up, looks like its going to be a scope with a high "grin factor"!
  14. Is the Tal100r new to you or are these abberations a new occurence? The Tal100r does give a kind of very pale yellow cast on images but for an achromat it, well mine anyway, performs very well. The Tal100r objective lens cell is collimatable. I have a Baader semi-apo filter and I've only tried it in a fairly limited way in my ST120. I had no expectation that it would work any kind of wonder on the CA but first impressions are that stars look a little "tighter" more pleasing to the eye but thats a long way from being a scientific analysis! Looking forward to trying it in the Tal and my Vixen achro.
  15. Hi and welcome to SGL. I have the 1145p although I'll admit I bought it mainly for the SW Avant mount. That said the little 114 scope surprised me with how good it was. This is quite a fast scope at f4.4 and spot on collimation of the mirrors is essential but I've found that it holds its collimation well. I wouldn't assume the collimation is out, but its worth checking. I found that a simple collimation cap is all thats needed. The light weight and short focal length of the 114 makes it ultra portable but a draw back of that f4.4 focal ratio means that it really benefits from better quality well corrected more expensive eyepieces. I use a 20mm explore scientific 68 degree eyepiece for good wide field views. For luna and planetary work (in just a 500mm scope) you will need a much smaller focal length eyepiece and a good barlow lens is helpful. I have a 10mm Baader BCO which with its matching 2.25× barlow gives decent lunar views and the equatorial cloud belts on Jupiter are easily visible along with its 4 larger moons. It needs to be said though that planetary work is not really this scopes forte. Pushing the magnification too much doesn't achieve anything other than making an indistinct image more blurry and darker! As said though, within its limitations its works very well. I can't vouch for your goto but if you can get it properly setup there's no reason it shouldn't serve you well. In terms of improving the scope I've found flocking the inside of the top of the tube opposite the focuser and blackening the edges of the secondary gives a little more contrast and I've also stripped down the focuser, cleaned the old sticky grease out and regreased it. I've also given it larger focuser knobs. This has made the focuser a little smoother and easier to use. Overall just small improvements but worthwhile. Once you've familiarised yourself with the scope you can decide how far you want to go with it. Enjoy your new scope.
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