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Everything posted by Tonys

  1. I agree. The Nikon Action and Olympus DPS 8x40 get good reviews and are not too expensive. I have the Nikons. Old binoculars bought on Ebay and from charity shops can be great and I have several pairs but in my experience they usually need an internal clean and sometimes a realignment. The latter causes eyestrain and discomfort in use.
  2. Just seen it. I think this is an exciting idea that will really catch on with lots of people, but I suspect many others will continue to maintain that unless your eye is reacting to the actual photons that have travelled the vast distance in time and space from the target (which after all is a wondrous thing) it isn't " real" but an image of an image ie once removed. Having said that, I suppose when we go to a live music performance we hear the amplified ie electronically processed sound and the question arises as to whether that is "real" But in this case at least you have the performer(s) physically present, so maybe the answer is to have a conventional scope and the Evescope product side by side! How about both in one unit?
  3. Whatever it was that I saw, as it was moving south to north I wonder if that means it was nothing to do with the Perseid shower, since the latter radiates from the north-east. It had a clear trail visible for the time I watched it, the same colour as the head ie yellow-white.
  4. Did anyone see the possible earth-grazer I spotted last night (around 02::00 ish 12/08/2016)? I was about to come in after watching the Perseids when it appeared low in the western sky travelling horizontally South to North and visible for several seconds. If it was a proper earth-grazer I am very happy as it's the first one I've seen. I spotted some nice Perseids - i though the brightest showed green tints and they had long lasting trails. I can see why some people call them natures's fireworks.
  5. That's how I've always done my newtonian and maksutov mirrors and as you say it works really well. I leave mine standing safely on it's side in a cupboard while drying, to minimise dust falling onto it. I have used just deionised water so far which doesn't appear to leave any residue and would be interested to know the advantage of including the isopropanol.
  6. Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I will get some marine grease to begin with (cheap enough on Ebay)
  7. Thanks for that. I will give it a try.
  8. Yes - like the stuff that was all over the focusing gear on my Skymax and which I removed during a cleaning exercise. I then discovered that ordinary grease is no substitute, the focuser knob subsequently being very loose in operation. Can't beat learning by experience I suppose!
  9. Hi All. Just wondering if anyone could advise me on a suitable reasonably priced grease for the focuser mechanisms on old porro prism binos that I have restored and also for the focuser on the Skymax 90 Maksutov. I've read that a damping grease is the thing and have seen Tamiya friction damping grease on Ebay but it comes in hard, medium and soft grades. Many thanks Tony
  10. Just recently I've got into buying old binos from Ebay and I've been surprised how good some of them are after a thorough clean, given the low purchase price. I've just cleaned up a pair of Octra 7x50 that I paid £20 for and the image is really good. Hardly any colour fringing even at the field edge and really sharp to the edge too. Field is significantly wider than my Tento 7x50 and altogether a better bino. I also have a pair of 8x30 Octra that are excellent though obviously not good for star gazing. I've found that old standard German pattern porro prism binos are actually quite easy to take apart and clean and it can make a huge difference.
  11. Hi Mark. I noticed the straps on your scope. Are they for carrying it about? I currently have an 8 inch Dob and am considering upgrading to 12 inch but I'm concerned about ease of transportation. Thanks. Tony
  12. Sorry - I've confused the issue here. As Ronin says it's the mount that needs to point north. The counterweight shaft can only be used as a guide if it's lined up with the centre of the mount, viewed from the front. When the latitude is set it can then be used as a guide by viewing it from above. The best way by far though is to get a polarscope ,as Nick recommends. I have one on my eq5 and once set I can track for much longer without correction than with the Tal, unless I spend time doing star drift alignment.
  13. One way to get a very rough polar alignment is to set up your mount so that the counterweight shaft is aligned north-south (use a compass if needed) then elevate the mount to your latitude on the scale (52 degrees in my case). I do this with my Tal and it works reasonably well for short-time visual observations. Be careful not to let the compass get too near the steel parts of the scope though! The paving slabs on our patio happen to run north-south so I use the edge as a guide.
  14. I think it was a good idea to offer him a look through your scope, as it would put him at ease that you were genuine. Maybe next time you have a session planned you could go over during the daytime to let him know and repeat your offer. I don't know how you can avoid having to go over each time though, if there isn't any way to block the light.
  15. I think the possibility, however remote, that we on planet earth are alone in the universe is in a way quite an exciting one. It would certainly make us all rather special.
  16. The Jedi Knight one is stretching it a bit IMHO!
  17. I think that's right. The declination given is relative to the celestial equator and this is tilted relative to the earth's equator owing to the tilt of the earth's axis. Because of this tilt, all the stars appear to rotate around the Pole Star every 24 hours rather than around the zenith directly overhead and therefore some with moderately negative declinations will at their highest points be visible from northern locations.
  18. The smaller one you saw could be it's satellite galaxy, M32.
  19. It's like most things with stargazing, I find. Persistence and patience are essential and usually ( but not always) pay off. I hasten to add all my equipment is of the manual variety.
  20. If your refractors have small apertures compared to the reflector could it be that the sparkling effect is partly owing to atmospheric disturbance ? Larger apertures show this as movement and breaking up of the dot.
  21. Not sure if it's been mentioned yet but I'd strongly recommend budgeting for a dew shield (mine's an Orion one).
  22. My Skymax 90 performs very well considering it's small aperture. On the best nights it has it separated double stars very close to it's theoretical limit which is amazing given its price and it is also excellent for the moon. It shows the main belts of Jupiter, Saturns rings and Mars' polar cap. In terms purely of optical correction I think it's brilliant. The only downsides for me are some stray light when viewing the moon and some image shift while focusing.
  23. Just wondering if you got to compare them with more recent quality ones. My old Tento Soviet ones produce lovely sharp images, not that much different to my newish Nikons. Last year while clearing out my in-laws loft we found a pair of Prinz 8x30's (Dixons brand) and they were awful - Images terribly soft.
  24. I have a Telrad and the more basic sort (see post 11). They both do the job, but both suffer from dewing up quickly. Happily a dew shield is available for the Telrad and it works a treat for me. I got the the one with the diagonal mirror and with a bit if practice this works great for targets towards the zenith with my Dob. I also love the old fashioned but serious design. It reminds me of lab instruments I used in the early 70's
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