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Everything posted by TonyD

  1. Great! Thanks for the reply. Just got back from my extended trip to the UK and ... cloudy, cloudy, cloudy. Ahh well. I have the kit ready to delve into when there is a break in the overcast weather.
  2. Sorry - no intention to "bumb" this thread, but I may have buried my question too deeply in my previous post. I am wondering if anyone with experience with the 50mm mini guide scope by Orion knows how easily it will attach to a Skywatcher Evostar 80ED telescope. I have the opporunity of acquiring one with a Skywatcher Synguider 2. Anyone's thoughts/experiences appreciated! Best wishes Mike
  3. Hi all I am going to move towards astrophotography big time, if my budget can stand it. Mind you, I am already reasonably well kitted out (I hope). My gear has been safely stored for several years in a dry and protected environment, so time to blow the dust off it (wait, there's no dust, it was in a safe and protected environment ?) and see if I can get some decent images. I have an Evostar ED80 with the 0.85 reducer/flattener. I have the HEQ5 Pro mount with both SynScan and SynTrek controllers. I have a Canon 450D that I can butcher for any astro mods (it has a duff expo
  4. TonyD

    I am back

    Thanks everyone for replying and making me feel back at home and amongst friends. I am writing this from a hotel in Bremen, Germany. We are driving over to the UK from Norway. No more ferries from Scandinavia (not even Denmark). I guess the proliferation of cheap flights and rental car deals slowly killed off the viability of the ferry services, so when the ferries had to be refitted and upgraded, the money was not available to upgrade them to current emission standards. So tomorrow off to Dunkirk and then evacuating to Dover. From there, a drive up to Malvern where we are stayin
  5. TonyD

    I am back

    Hello All, It has been about five years (probably more), but I am back. Long story - various reasons (with a serious bout of eye trouble (anyone had macular holes or vitreo macular traction?) why I went into hibernation - but hibernation is the right term. No astro equipment acquired or dumped. It is all as it was... Two TAL 100s, a TAL wooden GEM mount, a TAL-2M with working original motor, a TAL Alcor, a Skywatcher 80 ED, an HEQ5, a Skywatcher AZ3 mount and a little portable Skywatcher 705. Plus an assortment of odds and ends, for astrophotography. I hope to be able t
  6. 1986 and Comet Halley-mania. Yep remember it well. Well done - I "bagged" Pan Starrs last week and it gave me such a thrill too. Those long cloudy periods of overcast weather are frustrating, but when something like this happens it all becomes worth while, doesn't it?! Mike
  7. TonyD

    Hello from Herts

    And with the clocks having gone forward you've got to stay up even later to get the views! I know, I'm in the same boat! Welcome to the forum! Mike EDIT: Or you could creep out in the wee, wee hours because the sun is rising "later" if your toddler stays asleep!
  8. ... for hauling around on journeys if you're out and about, sleeping over at friend's, taking long train journeys. something that's not uber-fragile (can take a knock or two within reason) light-ish and can fit in a rucksack short versatile for different types of objects cheap (even second hand wise) enough so if it did get trashed you wouldn't be in gushes of tears quality enough so that the images/views you get are reasonable and enjoyable (not going to mention Seben here, right!) What fits the bill? Mike
  9. Nahh. Galaxy or maybe Mars, but not Milky Way bars.
  10. Apparently this is made out of chocolate! Mmmmm. Mike
  11. The other pictures you've posted on your photostream are wonderful too. I'd be very proud of them if I was getting those kinds of results. The mono Saturn and Titan is, in my mind, spectacular. For me it will be very emotional pointing my telescope up in the sky and getting images like that, knowing that I have captured the real deal out there. I never want to lose the awe and wonder I feel when I experience those emotions.
  12. Intriguing - how did you work that out Michael?
  13. OK the Equinox 80ED - the new one with Schott glass etc. Pros and cons? If you have one could you give your latest opinions? What is it like for DSO imaging, planetary imaging, observing? What about adding further flatteners/reducers if available? Thanks for any help here
  14. I am going to use some masking tape along the counterweight shaft and mark off where the counterweight should go if a camera is attached. It might be I can include three markers - one for a small eyepiece, one for an eyepiece and barlow attachment, and one with the camera attached. Then I can make good guestimates for any extra weight I want to put on the focusser. All the best Tony/Mike
  15. I was always very wary about using the chemicals, too. I did Chemistry A level and I hated the practical - especially when the teacher said "don't get that on your skin, it's carcinogenic!" Oh the halcyon days (daze?) of the 80s.
  16. I have one of these and these knocking around in my office downstairs. Picked them up on the Bay of Fleas for a few hundred sovs about seven years ago but never managed to get the time to get it going. Will I ever get it going, or should I sell it on?
  17. OK these questions keep being asked - but after trawling through this and other forums I am still uhming and ahhing... I am interested in getting a refractor for imaging. I am considering the Skywatcher 80ED variants - the DS Pro and the Equinox. The Equinox is a faster scope - but how is it for CA? How is it for visual observations? How effective is the flattener? Apparently the Equinox has a somewhat sturdier and better build quality/finish. I suppose 80ED is best for widefield imaging - that is what I am interested in. But how does it manage planets and lunar features? Isthe flattener/
  18. Yeah the having-to-stop-and-wind-it-back is a little .... hmmmm .... agricultural? industrial? But it's the fun of it too. I really like the 2M mount - and you can keep turning the RA knob right around the sky
  19. I know that there are phone apps etc but this is a useful site to get transit times... http://www.acquerra....re/jupiter.html Just enter the date and press calculate. Local time figured out automatically from your location Cheers Tony EDIT: Going to try for the GRS transit in about an hour. It's a wee bit hazy out there, but fingers crossed!
  20. Really nice. I'm going to be doing stuff like that soon, I hope
  21. Studying my image carefully I see, Peter. Full marks, heh heh
  22. Sorting out my TAL-2M to get it running tonight. Here are a few random questions: 1) The dec setting circle - mine was on backwards for some strange reason! I have switched it around now so that the little arrow marker rides in the corner groove. That little arrow - is it only held on by the set screw (which looks a bit like a finder scope screw)? There is a bit of a gap between it and when the counterweight bar is screwed in all the way home. 2) Setting the latitude of the scope - there is a tightnening bar and a knob - they both perform the same function? Because I am at about 60 N the
  23. Hi Kathleen! I should have presented the picture like this before! It's much bigger than the one Astro Baby suggested. Nick: Like I said I have been a bit remiss with screws and things spilled over the floor, so it is highly likely that this is from a box of unsorted bits and pieces I was going through to fix a child seat the other day. But I just want to be on the safe side. I've fully inspected the mount, there are no other bolt head comparable to this one, and there are no obvious holes which this might fill. Thanks to everyone who offered suggestions - that's the great thing about forums
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