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kerrylewis

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About kerrylewis

  • Rank
    Sub Dwarf
  • Birthday 09/07/47

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    Mainly the planets
  • Location
    Northamptonshire

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  1. Welcome - the more the merrier. We are gonna need name badges!
  2. Well - I do have a big birthday this year........
  3. Update: I've been able to use the mount a couple of times. This included early one morning when there had been heavy rain the previous evening with clear skies forecast to follow. This is exactly the type of situation where I thought it would come into its own - i.e. when I would be unable (or unwilling) to set up but then a clear period ensues. As it turned out the seeing was poor for Jupiter but that wasn't the mount's fault! I have been swapping emails with Ioptron in the US (who had been replying quickly and helpfully) about balancing a larger scope. Although it is possible to counterbalance my SCT + heavy eyepiece using two weights, I did try this and it was very awkward. I recently swapped the dovetail bar on the SCT for the larger Losmandy type and I actually find this to be a bit more difficult to locate into the saddle of a mount. Perhaps I just need to get used to it? The upshot of this is that I think I will not be using the heavier set up much if at all. I wanted to have a grab 'n go set up but with tracking and I think this is more suited to a lighter scope (my 100ED) and a maximum of one counterweight. I may experiment with a dual scope set up but for visual only I don't really see the advantage of this. So - I am now used to levelling the mount and switching on. I don't know how critical the levelling is - the manual says it is- but I try and get it as close as possible. The calibration target is usually a little way off but I understand that this as normal, and you can only move the mount in azimuth at first, also normal. But it is quite easy to centre the target quickly (it's usually the very brightest object in the sky - often a planet) and then everything is spot on. The mount also connects easily to my iPad with Sky Safari. One minor niggle is that i find the adjustable tripod legs difficult to fully tighten enough o prevent movement, but that may be my aged hands! Overall I am pleased withe the mount and I think it will give me more opportunities to observe which I may previously have missed. I am slightly disappoint that the heavier SCT set up is not easier, but in reality I think I would more often lean towards the lighter refractor anyway. I just need that dream Tak now........
  4. I've only just caught up with this. Really stunning and shows what can still be achieved by amateurs. I can see me referring to this for comparison when we get some decent conditions for viewing. The result is obviously the result of much hard work for which you and your collaborators should be congratulated. Well done Peter
  5. I thought I mentioned it in a PM I do plan to take the Vixen. I am going by car this time and not sure how much stuff I can fit in but that is a must
  6. Great stuff Shaun - see you there!
  7. Well done Nick. Not only a great event but an annual one methinks!
  8. I thought it would be good to check who's coming. I make it these: Davey-t Mdstuart DRT estwing Stu? gtis mapstar cotterless45 JemC Paul73 Star101 kerrylewis Faulksy Swamp thing Wookie1965 Westmarch Danski? Viv moonshane About 19 so far. A good turn out. Apologies if I've got any wrong. There may also be people who have not posted. Feel free to make any corrections
  9. You seem to have negotiated a good deal! The manual etc definitely describes it as 'optional'. I'm not bothered about mounting two scopes so an additional weight is the best option. I have skywatcher ones but they don't fit very well and I wouldn't be able to use both mounts at the same time
  10. Shaun - I haven't got a secondary mounting. They are not included as standard Kerry
  11. Sorry - I should have explained. The Vixen has a counterweight system on the ota itself. The previous owner added this to assist in balancing the scope. So it needs to be added to the weight of the scope when assessing payload. You are quite right - the mount's counterweights are not included in the basic payload. Cheers Kerry
  12. I've just checked the weight of some of my scopes. The weight limit for the mount is 33lb. My 100ED plus heavy eyepiece is about 11lb and the SCT plus eyepiece is 26lb. So as I expected these are well within the capacity, but the SCT requires two counterweights. My Vixen 6" weighs about 35ibs but adding the rings, counterweight system and eyepiece pushes this up to 45lb. So, again as I suspected, this is too much for the Ioptron and will need to stay with the AZ-EQ6. And i've checked the Alair Astro website and there is a extension pillar which fits the mount should it be required.
  13. Thanks. I've answered your post in the other thread
  14. Hello My 100ed is quite long and was just missing the legs. However I use some heavy ES eyepieces so the scope was well forward in order to achieve balance. If it wasn't for this it would have hit the legs. I have a really long refractor, the Vixen, but I am sure that this is too heavy for the mount. I'm going to check the weights but I don't expect to be using the Vixen with this mount! That will have to be the AZ-EQ6. I think your dream 6" f16 is likely to be too heavy i have not seen any pillar extensions but not really checked. My idea for the Ioptron mount is to be able to set up quickly when needed and I don't expect it be suitable for all scopes especially really long and heavy ones
  15. Derek There are a couple of threads re Starsense for Skywatcher- one started by me: in the end I wasn't convinced that it was for me and instead went for the Ioptron mount mentioned by festoon. It arrived this week