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Everything posted by kestrel1960

  1. Really want one of these on a wooden tripod to finish my TAL collection [emoji3][emoji3][emoji3] Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. Well it's all done. You were right Astro_Baby the existing felt was as thin as paper & virtually fell off. Used some contact adhesive for the new layer of felt to metal. Then double-sided tape to add a second layer for good measure. As usual I overdid things. Loads of felt left (bought WAY too much) and the double-sided tape was as thick as the felt so effectively three layers applied. Yeah you guessed - the tube is very tight now. Too tight if I'm honest with no room to slacken off. But I'm hoping things will eventually compress a bit & thereby loosen up over time. Silly me.....
  3. Called at Hobbycraft Preston tonight & found the felt that Astro_Baby suggested. Only 50p per sheet so even better value than online. Went for the green colour for continuation of the original TAL theme :-) Got plenty of "no more nails". A thin application on the felt should do the trick (I hope). Weekend project now set up....
  4. Thanks again for the advice. Think I'll try fellow TAL user Astro_Baby's option here as there is a local Hobbycraft store nearby & at 79p a go it's a very cheap fix. I've got to admit whilst previously googling for anything TAL I found your website Astro_Baby & have been reading all your your handy stuff on it especially your reviews. That TAL 100RS of yours sounds like a very good piece of kit. Seems to have the same GEM as mine except for the wooden tripod (which I personally love by the way - wish mine had a wooden tripod too). I'm a relative newcomer so am struggling a bit with my set up & use of my kit to date but I'm sure perseverance with this TAL will be more than worth it. I've read that TAL owners rarely part with their equipment (& regret it if they do) !!! Will let you know how I get on. Might go for the blue felt :-)
  5. Now at least I have a few places to look for this material. Online searches were proving fruitless. Thanks to everyone for the advice. I only hope I can return the favours one day....
  6. Thanks Astrobaby. Can you remember where you got your felt from ?
  7. Thanks for all the advice. The self-adhesive flocking from Wilkinsons seems the best choice Gary so I'll have a search when I'm next there & let you know the score.
  8. Thanks for the advice phillc. Have no idea what you went through. Mine started when I visited the opticians after a few bad headaches & all hell broke loose. I thanked the optician for her quick actions because I was in hospital for laser surgery within 24 hrs (Friday 13th April 2012). It's been one operation after another ever since. Lasering. Gas. Then silicon oil in the eye to keep the retina flat & attached. It's still tearing away again hence the latest batch of laser surgery in an attempt to stop it detaching again. If it does go again its game over so the why I'm so down at the moment. Fingers crossed in the hope it'll stay there but even if it does the prospect of actually focussing on things is not great because the tear was so bad. Am glad I use me right eye in the main because the left is pretty much buggered. Slight possibility of some improvement in vision over time keeps me hoping, though. Your words have given me the lift I needed. Thanks.
  9. I know the OTA is meant to be loose enough to move around whilst viewing but mine is too loose. Even with the rings fully tightened the tube slides slowly down (onto the floor if it wasn't for the viewfinder acting as a stop!). I can see there in green felt (like the baize of a snooker table) lining the tubes & I believe this can be replaced. Has any on here done this & can advise the best place to get this felt (or a good alternative material? And the best way to go about it (eg glue over the existing felt or attempt to remove it first?). i don't want to end up damaging all the white paintwork after all... Thanks in advance.
  10. I wasn't expecting all this. I'm a new starter having only recently managed to get outside but suffered a bit of a setback. I just didn't want everyone to think I'd got bored & packed it in. Thanks for all the kind comments everyone. I'll be back.
  11. Just to let you all know I've not lost the astronomy bug just having a rough time at present. Another batch of laser eye treatment left me really ill recently with long periods of tiredness & constant nausea. Not nice at all. By the time I get home from work I just don't feel like lugging out the "equipment" but I'll persevere. I'm sure I'll be back on track soon. Clear skies to you all (as they say).
  12. Great to find someone with the same scope nicnac.
  13. Hey there i was thinking this TAL must be a decade old (after reading about the history of TAL & hitting various websites). But tonight I did something I should have done when I bought it - read the manual...doh. Guess what? Manufactured at NPZ Optics State Corp (Novosibirsk Instrument-making plant) March 2010 & according to the boxes despatched by OVL (Optical Vision Ltd) 8/3/2012. Nearly new!!! it even has a handwritten serial number signed off at the manufacturing plant - 0062 (could that be the 62nd TAL 150p made in 2010?). Now I'm certain I made the right choice at a decent price. Lots of smiles here ....
  14. Well finally a break in this horrendous weather & a chance to play out again. Actually got the polar alignment correct (I think) for the first time. Spent some time observing Jupiter again (which strangely did not appear as good or clear as my first session). Had real trouble making out any of the gas belts but following it using the slomo controls seemed a little easier this time. Then all of a sudden the clouds came over covering the whole sky so I gave in & packed everything away. i wish I hadn't because half an hour later the sky was totally clear again so I ended up bringing all the kit downstairs again !! This time a much easier target. The rising full moon - I spent a lot of time there - loads of amazing views. Actually found it was better viewing the edges where the fantastic craters stood out much better against the darkness. I discovered many things tonight:- I need to learn how to use the scope correctly. I knew from the outset the TAL mount was going to be a hard taskmaster & it is. Even after finding my target & setting up the tube seemed to move at the slightest touch & I'd have to start again. It wasn't moving within the rings but it was the mount itself (as if I'd not tightened something). I will read up some more on general telescope usage methinks. I need to prepare sooner - I rushed things a little after the excitement of FINALLY getting a clear sky. I need not "give in" so soon even if the cloud covers the whole sky (as it did tonight) because it can clear again just as quickly. I found out the hard way (having lugged the very heavy TAL up & downstairs twice in as many hours). I can honestly say this new pastime is good for fitness.!
  15. Which TAL do you have, skir? I thought you were joking about the colour of yours but I've just seen a military green TAL1 for sale on gumtree!!!!
  16. It's a shame I'm so late to the party having just started out with a TAL. I'm sure I would have enjoyed the TAL user group (http://stargazerslounge.com/groups/tal-users-group.html) had it still existed. But in the meantime I'm having finding out about TAL in the many random posts on this forum :-)
  17. James, Now you said that, I remember reading about inverted images but had forgotten all about it. That confirms the others were indeed Jupiter's moons. Thanks. Will look at Stellarium again later. Wish I could get out with the scope but it'll have to wait till my eye is ok. i wish you luck with the Great Red Spot. Let me know how it goes.
  18. Wow everyone I just checked out Stellarium thanks James. What a great piece of software. I'm hooked !!! Went back to the exact date & time I was viewing Jupiter & guess what? Ganymede, Europa & Callisto all line up parallel to the planet as I remember seeing it. (Except two of the moons were to the right of the planet not the left). Awesome - I cannot believe it but I'd made out 3 of Jupiters moon on my first night. Blows my mind. Definitely have the stargazing bug now. Thanks everyone for all your help & suggestions. I am so pleased !!
  19. Thanks for everyone's comments above. Believe me I was shocked to discover it wasn't "just another" star. James I will take more time next time as suggested. It was only tiredness & the current state of my eyes that forced me to stop observing (coupled with the speed things were moving !!). It will be a while before I can use the scope again. But I'm definitely gonna try binoculars for that comet before it completely disappears. Anyone had a successful sighting yet? tibbz2 - I hadn't thought of the moons because they were somewhat distant from Jupiter & were just like stars. They were all on a parallel line with the planet though. Could I have really seen the moons too? if so that's the icing on the cake !!!!
  20. Date 13/3/13 Sorry it's taken so long to post this. I did on the night of the event but all my comments were lost when the website (or my computer) crashed. Have since been in for an eye op (my 4th for a detached retina) so I'm out of action for a while. I must have set up my telescope incorrectly because the moon was too low in the sky for my telescope to reach (it kept hitting the top of the mount). So I concentrated on the very high very bright star directly above me which I originally thought was Sirius. As I changed eyepieces & eventually used the Barlow I realised this wasn't a star at all but Jupiter. Amazing. I could make out the faint brownish bands across the planet. At lower magnification I saw three stars in alignment (two to the left & one to the right of the planet) although I'm not sure what they were named (need to do some research on them). I have to admit that at highest magnification I had not anticipated the speed of the Earths movement & had great difficult keeping Jupiter centrally in vision. I have a steep learning curve to make. All in all I was very pleased at my first night out. My heart was beating heavily at the end of it all (perhaps 90 minutes that's all but felt much longer). Cannot wait till my eye is sorted so I can do it all again. In the meantime I keep trying binoculars for that comet but it eludes me this far....
  21. Just spent ages on typing tonight's comments when the site crashed - I'm not typing it all out again tonite. Will try again tomorrow. Phil 13/3/13
  22. Hi all. Thanks for all your welcomings (if that's the right word). Starman I worked in Blackpool for 13 years & travel there occasionally even now. Stu I lived on Peacock Hall Road until 1990 - I've lived at the other end of town ever since (Farington). Getting really [removed word] at the weather. Not had a chance to do my first ever viewing yet....! phil 11/3/13
  23. Thanks Ryan, it wasn't totally blind. I have been looking seriously since Christmas. Didn't fancy a Dobsonian & those Cassegrain types were well beyond my reach so i'd resigned myself to the fact I couldn't stretch beyond a well-known 130mm Newtonian when the TAL 150P literally sprang out at me in local classifieds. Believe me I did a lot of research & obtained much advice for over a week before taking the plunge. I somehow "felt" it was the one to start with.... Can you understand that? I know it can be hard work to set up but if I can handle that I can deal with any subsequent device methinks. I have a steep learning curve but I like challenges. I don't think I'll part with it though. It's like buying your first car :-) Phil 10/3/13
  24. Thanks for all the welcome posts.!!! Well I've picked it up. It's the later model TAL 150P with the 2" finder scope but is also fitted with a red dot finder. Two Plossi eyepieces plus a 2x Barlow. Cheshire collimator. Manual & all the original boxes & packaging. It's in superb condition no scratches or dents. Well looked after. The most surprising thing. Much smaller than I expected & once you remove the balance weights the scope & EQ mount is not so heavy at all. The pillar stand is very light in comparison but really sturdy compared to tripod types. Think I've made the right choice at the right price & have everything I need for a good start in serious stargazing. The only downer is the torrential rain outside & poor forecast for the next week !!!!! Really want to see that comet now... Especially interested in getting out with my equipment & meeting those of you who are local (Chorley & Euxton). Actually I'm only 3miles away in Leyland :-) Phil 7/3/13
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