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Everything posted by kev100

  1. Wow! @prusling that's an amazing photo. And @AdeKing too, the sunset was fantastic. I too had a great time last night. Although we had no luck with the Veil neb, I got Jupiter (amazing sight in the brief moments of stillness), Saturn (still too low to see the Cassini division, but spectacular nonetheless), M57, M13, and then, by about 1.30pm, the southern sky cleared completely, to reveal Ms 4, 6, 7 & 8, 22, 69, 70 and NGC 6652 (those are just some of the clusters and objects I saw that I could easily identify!). M8, the Lagoon nebula was fantastic! Bright structures, with dark lanes running through, nearly filling the fov of my 20mm ep at x60. The last 20 minutes of the evening I spent scanning through Sagittarius and Scorpius with my 10x50s will stay with me. When a large, bright patch appeared to the right of Sagittarius, I at first thought it was the return of the clouds, but in the binos it appeared full of stars, with dark dust lanes running through. I'd never seen this starfield so clearly defined and bright! Will definitely be heading back there again soon. Cheers Ade, Peter! Kev
  2. Hiya. I've been checking the forecast on a variety of sites this week, and it's been all over the place! Currently not bad at all, so I'm going for it. Hope others can make it. Kev
  3. until
    Seven metre diameter moon, talks, solar observing, open air (space-themed) cinema, and much more, plus a stargazing session in the evening up at Maiden Castle ... More details here: http://moonburyrings.co.uk
  4. Hiya. Forecast seems to be changing, depending on which service you check it on. Currently the Met office forecast looks good ...
  5. Hi all, Just thinking about heading up to Creech carpark on Friday night (5th of July), and was wondering if any others are up for coming along? Kev
  6. Hiya, First of all, a light bucket dob isn't the best tool for viewing planets. It'll be better on fainter objects like galaxies, faint nebulae, etc, where gathering light is the important factor. For already bright planets magnification is more important than aperture. However, seeing conditions affect the view, and there's an upper limit to the amount of magnification you can reasonably use and still get crisp views. This limit isn't imposed by the equipment, necessarily, but more so by the atmosphere (and associated humidity). Your 3.6mm plossl is already giving you what many regard as the upper magnification limit useable in the UK (900/3.6 = x250). EPs with better glass would give better views, though (in terms of more contrast, sharper images, wider fields), but it's unlikely you could use more magnification as well. I wouldn't recommend spending large sums yet on EPs. You can do better than stock items and plossls by spending only 40-50 quid on BST starguiders and the like (these will offer a much better view generally than the EPs that came with the scope. However, the upper limit to magnified but still sharp views remains ... When I'm viewing planets like Jupiter and Saturn, I'll try x240 (which is the most I can use with my scope / EPs), but the best views are usually obtained around x150-x200. Kev
  7. Hi Doug, It's a cracking EP. Looking forward to reading your experiences Kev
  8. They're all visible from the UK, at least from the south coast ...
  9. This looks interesting (especially if it comes with light pollution regulations) : https://www.dorsetecho.co.uk/news/17481626.national-park-plan-tens-of-millions-for-dorset-in-major-economic-boost/?ref=twtrec
  10. Thanks to everyone who has contributed to what has become a fascinating and informative thread. I guess my question now is: is it even possible to get a good 82 degree EP, for use in a fast scope, in the 14-16mm focal length range ? Without breaking the bank ? ....
  11. Hi Robin, The 8.8 is a cracker, and I definitely won't be parting with it, even though the eye relief is tight. The 16mm maxvision, though, does feel tighter, and I'm starting to find the FOV restricting. Budget can't run to a T5, though Kev
  12. Google translate did a fair job of translating Ernest's reviews, and the conclusion re the Nirvana is : "Eyepiece looks very personable. It has a huge 82-degree field of view, which, combined with a 16 mm focal length, makes it an excellent candidate for a viewing eyepiece for a 1.25 "eyepiece tube. But ... the image quality at the edge of the field of view of this eyepiece is poor. I think the best application is could be found in telescopes with a relative aperture of 1: 12-1: 15, such as the compact Maksutov-Cassegren. The high-aperture optics is contraindicated for him." I feel this rules it out for me and my scope, and I think I'll hang on to the MaxVision for a while. Cheers all, Kev
  13. yes or perhaps holding off for a second hand SKywatcher branded one ... Essentially, I'm looking for something to fill the gap between the 20mm myriad, and the 8.8 explore scientific ... but without breaking the bank.
  14. Thanks Paul (and everyone else). The 16mm maxvision is indeed a top eyepiece, but the 68 degree fov does seem a bit tight to me these days. Also, using it is similar to using a monocle as the eye relief is so tight.
  15. Thanks Andrew, that's very interesting (I hadn't considered that the view would be less sharp in the Nirvana). Several reviews I've read of the Nirvana range have compared them favourably to TV Naglers ... even in faster scopes. I guess I'm just wondering whether the additional 0.2 degree in afov and slightly better eye relief will make a worthwhile difference (the Maxvision is already very good). Kev
  16. Hi, As much as I love my 16mm Maxvision, I'm starting to find the 68 degree fov and eye relief a little restrictive, and wondered about replacing it with a 16mm Nirvana. I've read good things about these, and they seem to fare well in fast scopes. Just wondered if anyone had any direct comparisons with the Maxvision. Cheers, Kev.
  17. Hiya. I'm quite happy just nudging. 82 &100 degree EPs help, though ?
  18. Hi all, Very difficult one, this. Been mulling it over since I first saw the original post. Gave up several times thinking 'nope, can't do it'. Every time I think of a particular observation, I think 'Ah, yes, but what about this ...', or 'oh yeah, that time' ... However, here's my current top three: 1. February 2015, the first time I saw a shadow transit on Jupiter, with my 250PX. I remember being amazed at the sight. It was a couple of weeks before the partial solar eclipse a few years ago (UK), and I remember being awestruck about seeing the same phenomenon on another planet. 2. Feb 2018, all four of the Leo quartet (Hickson 44), again with the 250PX, but from my back garden! Still chuffed about this. 3. March 2018, while scanning through the open clusters in Auriga and then down to Gemini, again with the 250PX, I stopped at M35. A lovely sight in itself, and one I'd seen many times before. But then, a small smudge appeared. I initially thought it was a smear of something on the eyepiece, but swapping to the ES 8.8 showed it was another small open cluster (NGC 2158). The experience of having looked at something on so many occasions, and then seeing something completely new blew me away. So there you have it, three experiences out of so many possibles (I'm sure I'll change my mind if I don't post this soon, so here goes). Kev
  19. The only time I can be confident of seeing the nebulosity was when using my 20x80 binoculars.
  20. I too recommend the collimating cap. Sometimes us a laser just as a double check/fine tuner, but mostly it's just the cap: https://www.firstlightoptics.com/other-collimation-tools/rigel-aline-collimation-cap.html
  21. Pretty poor year here. I recorded only 39 outings in my log, ranging from brief sessions with the bins to a few more lengthy scope nights. Although outings were few in number, I recorded some great sights, including two comets (Giacobini-Zinner and Wirtanen), all the planets, and managed the Leo quartet (Hickson 44) galaxies from the back garden. Also, 2018 was the year I completed the Messier catalogue. Some top nights, and occasionally some great company, but, at least towards the end of the year, a great deal of cloud induced frustration. Looking forward to (hopefully) clear skies in 2019! Kev
  22. Happy Xmas all, and fingers crossed for some great skies in the New year ?
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