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Everything posted by Dixie

  1. 127 Maks regularly come up for sale second hand for under £200, even down to £150. Bit of a no brainer for me. A steal at those prices for the optical quality you are getting. Been super impressed with mine and looked through a couple more that were of a similar standard.
  2. Yep it's Celestar - if it is Fastar compatible it's a Celestar Delux. Last of the pre-GOTO Celestron SCTs.
  3. Yep this is a 1990s or late 1980s model. Could be a Celstar. It's not a Powerstar or Ultima though. You will probably find it in here https://skywatch.brainiac.com/used/used_sct.pdf
  4. Got to say I can't agree that SCTs nearly always produce sub standard views. Between an 8 inch Edge and a four inch refractor under anything but the poorest conditions the former will provide more detail. The example I bought second hand provided some absolutely stunning views of Jupiter at Kelling last year, as did two C11s nearby.
  5. Really good thread. After years of using apps my only conclusion is that the only forecast that really matters is the video one either by the BBC or Met Office on the morning of the day in question. I find the Met Office's 10 Day Trend on YouTube useful for getting a handle on the big picture. But quite often the apps get even my current weather conditions wrong. Mind you, since I have not seen the sun here since for 10 days with no clear nights (seriously) and with a particularly poor forecast until at least the first week of Jan we are not stretching the talents of the forecasters too much.
  6. This has been a bleak spell of weather. Last time I saw the sun was a week a go and last night I stayed up beyond 3am on the forecast of clearing skies. True I could just about see the moon and one of two of the very brightest stars, but transparency was so terrible it amounted to a joke. Now more cloud for the foreseeable, plus fog. Hmm, time to bring the big scope insides for a little while. Suspect we may lose yet another dark sky period. How many times has that happened in the last few years? For anyone else living in Yorkshire - I feel your pain.
  7. Out of interest what's the current situation in terms of UK duty etc for importing scopes from the EU?
  8. Sorry take that back. Just discovered it another box - yes there is a M54 female threaded spacer which can serve as the output to a filter wheel. Apologies. To help others here's a comparison of size - the QHY268 and Atik 460EX
  9. Hmm, I can't see any M54 threaded spaces - the only one with a thread I can see in what I've got today steps it down to M48 female. Typical, I've just bought a M54 male filter wheel adapter based on what is clearly mistaken info.
  10. Capture software - like most things astronomy - goes through fads and fashions. There is more choice out there now with NINA and CCD Ceil, plus others, which is great. I've been using SGP for many years and it's had bugs along the way, but for the money I really rate it. The V3 I have is the best ever. I keep looking at other programmes, but none in my opinion has such an intuitive interface as SGP. I don't expect the two developers to keep working hard at it for just a one off price and furnish me with high grade software for ever. I'll be sticking with V3 unless there's a compelling reason to upgrade to V4. But for the $100 or so I paid for it I've had more than my money's worth.
  11. I'd take the 10, 17 and 32mm of that selection. Cover all the magnification will you need. You will be surprised how often you reach for the 17mm - it's a real sweet spot for DSO's like the Dumbbellbell. At F12 these eyepieces should work fine.
  12. I've got the AZ GTi and put it on a Vixen Custom tripod. The result is a much firmer base and better go-tos. The one the mount comes with is ok'ish, but the upgrade is very much worth it. You can use a handset with the AZ GTi if you have one kicking around. However, I use the Synscan app which works with Sky Safari to really open up possibilities. The tube is a Skywatcher 127 Mak, which I'm pleased with. I run the mount with Eneloop rechargeable batteries no problem. I have used the same tube with the SLT mount, but prefer the AZ GTi.
  13. Tut tut. Don't you know we are not supposed to image at those focal lengths according to AP gurus! Very nice image from a fellow C14 deep sky imager. And yes such images are more than possible from the UK.
  14. For the record 30 mm plossl eyepiece will give you the widest field of view with the 127 Mak. I use an Ultima 30 mm which is very nice. Orthos also work well, albeit with a smaller field of view.
  15. The little Mak is still great value. You could do a lot worse than get one on the AZGti and pick up a widefield jobby like the Startravel 102 tube for the lovely widefield thing - also rides very well on that mount.
  16. Yep depends on expectations. If you have widefield options in other scopes then this is a really nice one to add.
  17. If it helps here is my log entry for a night last year. As I said, a really decent scope which you can throw in the back of the car. I have other scopes for the big wide field view. Monday 20 January 2020 20.20 – 21.45 Sutton Bank, near Thirsk, North Yorkshire. Skymax 127 on AZGTi Cold and breezy. Transparency very average. SQM about 20.8 – 20.9. Seeing quite poor. A tour of familiar targets and lasting impression is that this is a very capable little scope, very easy to set and up and tear down. M42 looked really excellent, especially once the scope had cooled. Plenty of detail seen especially in the Nagler 16mm, which was a really sweet eyepiece with this scope. M78 also spotted – very clearly, and over in Andromeda NGC891 revealed itself in the 30mm Ultima, 25mm ortho and 16mm Nagler. Whilst in the neighbourhood, spotted NGC1023, very easy indeed. A few clusters in Auriga done, including M37 and NGC1907. No joy looking for Comet Panstarrs, but Hubble’s Variable Nebula easy object in all eyepieces - 9mm ortho (Volcano topped) showed a nice fan structure. Over to UM for a nice view of M82 and whilst slewing to M81, the third member of this triplet hoved into easy view, NGC3077. Over in Taurus, M1 was very good and even suggested some structure. Very near bright star.
  18. I've got this scope and use it for outreach and also an easy grab and go. I really like it and the quality of the view and construction belies its low price. In normal times these tubes are a steal second hand. Mine has a good star test as much as I can tell, collimation was off a bit when bought it new, but tweaked after I worked out which screws do what. You'd be surprised how good the DSO views are under a dark sky - 22mm LV Wideangle works very well on M42 and M27 is nicely framed. Needless to say double stars work really well. I've had a look at two other 127s Maks (bought for a National Park) and optically they were just as nice.
  19. A bit tangential, but second hand prices for lots of CCDs as far as their owners are concerned have not quite kept up with current events. Astro Ads seems full of hugely optimistic valuations, especially for 8300 chipped cameras.
  20. Hello Tom. I've been to Tucson a few times and called at Starizona, plus visited some of the observatories. I really liked the place. Rich
  21. Just up the road from you and it's just the same. Virtually nothing since late November. Just about stopped looking at the forecast, it's all so predictable.
  22. I'll accept anything at the moment. Dead loss this winter has been and tonight has descended into rain - would you ******* believe it!!!
  23. You did well to get that. What a total write off this winter has been. At my wits end - can't buy a clear sky, no matter what the weather forecasters say.
  24. Peter, The park hasn't taken a final decision on an IDA application. Let's hope they give it the green light. They have done a lot of the groundwork. Richard
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