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Everything posted by runoffshed

  1. Hello Ian, have you joined a society yet? Always a really good place to get to see some scopes and have a look through / see the size for moving and storage practicality etc... I belong to the Chipping Norton Amateur Astronomy Group - Cnaag - and we are a friendly group with an emphasis very much on getting in as much observing as possible. You would be very welcome to come to a meeting or observing evening at anytime. It really is a great way to gather information and experience and help you make the right decision before purchasing equipment and accessories. If we are a bit far to get to I'm sure there are other great groups in your neck of the woods. Good luck
  2. Thanks for this - super write up and useful photos. I'm just about to start a simple dob for an 8" mirror (got to build the tube first) and this has given me some great ideas. Can't believe you got your MDF cut and painted for £16! Looking forward to part 2
  3. Seller has now put the price down from a slightly optimistic £2000 to a, perhaps, still optimistic £450......at least it's in the ball park!
  4. Ok, had a message back from the seller and they have now changed the listing - it is a Meade ETX 125. I pointed out the new price for a 125 etx - around £620 or so - but they say they paid £4000 for it a few years ago, hence the listing price! Words fail me....
  5. Fair point, Russ. I sent the seller a message pointing out the problem with model number and directing them to the new price of an etx 125 - if that's what it is. I'll post any reply I get.
  6. I think it reads like a listing from someone new to ebay and who doesn't know anything about telescopes. As they've got no chance of getting the £2,000 opening bid I don't see how this 'scam' is going to work! Perhaps they meant to put £200 not £2,000?
  7. Why not get along to a society and see/try out a few scopes and binoculars before rushing into a purchase. There will be lots of free advice from astronomers concerning their scopes and whether they would buy the same again etc...Saves a lot of time and money in the long run. A previous poster mentioned Abingdon Asto Soc so can I give a mention for the Chipping Norton Group Cnaag That gives you a society in the north and south of the county so hopefully you can get along to one of them. Good luck!
  8. Many thanks Trevor and Nick for the answers to my question regarding Photoshop Elements/animations - both much appreciated John
  9. Fabulous! Can an animation like this be done in Photoshop Elements or does it have to be the full program? Many thanks John
  10. Imagine trying to collimate a 70 x 70 binocular! Also, with an exit pupil of 1mm they would be very uncomfortable/impossible to use unless held on a VERY stable mount ....and that assumes the optics will be excellent - which they definitely won't be. I'm with Naz on this one - I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole. John
  11. By the way ...forgot to say, fabulous picture, Nick John
  12. Finally got to see it last night with my local observing group; don't think I would have found it on my own as a couple of nights ago I spent 45 mins with 15 x 80's in my garden and couldn't find it. First saw it in a friend's 12" dob ......still not impressive, then found it in my 4" refractor ...just ...but most surprisingly was able to find it in my 10 x 50 binos BUT only because I used averted vision and had the star field in mind from the low power view through the 4". I wouldn't have even bothered with binos except that a far more experienced photographer/observer suggested that it's large angular size might make it visible in binos. This was all from a pretty dark site with a limiting magnitude of at least 5.5. I don't believe I could possibly see it with binoculars from a site brighter than this. Overall, much, much dimmer than I had anticipated from the magnitudes given on the web, but of course it's quite large and very diffuse, hence the discrepancy between the magnitudes given and what I was expecting to see. I just hope it brightens soon! John
  13. Fabulous shot, Mel. Sorry to say I had a look last night in 15 x 80's ....and still couldn't say I'd definitely seen it! John
  14. It doesn't help that the Parish Council support the plans but the district council don't have to take any notice of the Parish Council one way or the other. They can agree planning when the Parish Council oppose it and visa versa. The development plan is usually ( I think) a 10 year document so perhaps it won't happen for a while yet. Given the requirement to include affordable housing etc...these schemes can take a long time until building actually starts with councils, developers and housing associations sending paperwork round and round. It may well happen, but perhaps not that quickly. Good luck with it all. John
  15. I may well be wrong but if I remember my schoolboy maths correctly, putting the 100mm pipe inside the 250mm pipe will only save about 16% in weight....I know that's quite a lot but it's still going to be very heavy either way. I'm not sure that saving is worth the effort. I'd stick a small bore pipe for the cables and not worry too much about the 100mm pipe. John
  16. I have a few of those 'volcano top' Japanese T orthos and I think they are very good; well coated, good contrast and reasonable eye relief. Mine came from Fullerscopes in the 80's, I think. John
  17. I agree, Telrad transformed my dob's usability. Only downside is that it seems to attract dew like nothing else ever invented. However, cheap foam cover arched over the top of the whole thing solves that problem. Someone made up a very simple and neat one using velcro pads stuck to the side of the telrad for easy attachment and removal. There are many other designs though - heated one is shown on this site in the DIY section. John
  18. I should add apres-ski boots to your list - posh name for big foam things. Stops that dreaded icy cold creep through the soles of your feet.....and not too expensive at all. I'm sure your wind proof dungerees are fabulous but if anyone has an old pair of salopettes (is that how you spell it?) they are also fabulous. I only went skiing once, in the 80's, but at least I am still able to use the cheap and chearful kit I had to buy for it. John
  19. Rural areas of West Oxfordshire have already had all the timers on the street lights changed so they are off between 12.30 am and 5.30 am. Must save the council ( and us) a fortune. Makes a big difference to me as the street light 25 yards away that shines into my garden is extinguished but Oxford itself still glows away to the South East. John
  20. A very inspiring post, Tom. I'm a big fan of binoculars. As well as night time viewing, I like the ability to very quickly project the sun against any old bit of card to check for sunspots. I've also made a simple baader solar film cap for one side of my 10x50's which makes for the ultimate portable solar scope. Overall, I think binoculars are very underrated. I would always advise anyone wanting a telescope to get binos first....so much easier for a beginner to find objects. John
  21. George Alcock discovered Comet Iras - Araki - Alcock whilst observing through double glazing from the top of his stairs .....so it is possible to do some remarkable observing from inside your house - well, it is if you are the quite extraordinary Alcock. I think the rest of us better continue to go outside. John
  22. Rural areas of West Oxfordshire have already had all the timers on the street lights changed so they are off between 12.30 am and 5.30 am. Must save the council ( and us) a fortune. John
  23. Starmap Pro - very good indeed. If observing away from home I don't take a star atlas any more.
  24. Excellent thread - thanks, Ash. I have never been able to visualise the magnetic field/sunspot connection but the schematics in this thread make it very clear...excellent. John
  25. Should have added, the idea of using a flowerpot was not mine but I think a member of the BAA who coined the phrase 'Flowerpot Projector.' John
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