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About BinocularSky

  • Rank
    White Dwarf
  • Birthday 23/04/50

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  • Interests
    Visual astronomy (obviously), Kites, AmDram.
  • Location
    Between the New Forest and Cranborne Chase
  1. My T-mount came with a post that is drilled/tapped to 5/8", i.e standard survey tripos thread. I have, in the past, adapted survey tripods to take Vixen GP -type equatorial heads. The central hole needs slightly widening (to 60mm) and the part of the head that protrudes through it protrudes too far to use the staple (that holds the 5/8" bolt) with the required M10 bolt. Hence I have tried two different bodge jobs, either of which, with a bit of tweaking, may be suitable for you: * Removed the 5/8" bolt, and glued "pillars" of 3 M12 steel washers at 120 deg intervals around the top of 60mm hole in the tripod (for the mount body to rest on). An annulus would be better, but I didn't have the material or tools to make a suitable one. Then use an M10 bolt and washer, through the staple, to secure the head. * Removed the staple and 5/8" bolt, and made a U- shaped bracket, drilled with 10mm hole in the centre of the horizontal part, to fit under the tripod head. I used a bit of 6mm thick galvanised steel strap (cut from a sturdy throw-over gate latch) for the bracket.
  2. Terrestrial vs. Astronomical Binoculars?

    At the risk of this deteriorating into a mutual-appreciation fest, I should mention that when Olly was trying out my cunning little Vixen, he let me use his Leica 8x42. Damned nice image, brighter than the Vixen, very robust feel and, of course, the centre focus that makes them more versatile. There really is no substitute for decent glass.
  3. Excellent account, including how to photograph it, of the impending Geminid meteor shower from Mary McIntyre. In contrast to a certain ultracrepidarian BBC science correspondent (who has probably never actually bothered to observe a meteor shower), Mary tells you why you won't see the ZHR and why you shouldn't centre your gaze at the radiant. https://ukmeteornetwork.co.uk/news/geminid-meteor-shower-2017/
  4. Terrestrial vs. Astronomical Binoculars?

    Or, if you're on a slightly (for tiny values of "slightly") tighter budget, these are interesting. Standard IS for panning, powered IS once you have acquired your target. https://store.canon.co.uk/canon-14x32-is-binoculars/1374C005/?nav=binoculars
  5. Fitting Keiser 85mm Lens caps to APM 16x70 ED

    I had assumed that the APMs would have the same caps as the Lunt Magnesium. These do stay on. In fact, they fit so tightly that I am grateful for the presence of the tabs that assist in getting them off. Makes me wonder why they changed something that worked!
  6. Terrestrial vs. Astronomical Binoculars?

    Yes, same ones. (But the individual focus would likely dement you ... )
  7. Terrestrial vs. Astronomical Binoculars?

    Just to add: my new favourite hand-held astronomy binocs are Vixen 6.5x32. Nice flat unvignetted 9 deg field! The 2.1x42 is also lovely, especially from a dark site.
  8. FWIW, I use a surveyor's tripod with my P-mount. Tread the foot-spikes into the ground and it's rock steady.
  9. Terrestrial vs. Astronomical Binoculars?

    (Only responding because Steve (@steppenwolf) tagged me; nothing substantive to add. ) The Vortex Viper is a lovely binocular; very good optical quality and very robust (it is favoured by some South African game rangers precisely because of those qualities). As others have indicated, if it ain't broke, no need to fix it.
  10. The 6th anniversary edition of the Binocular Sky Newsletter is ready for these long midwinter nights. As well as the usual overview of DSOs, variable and double stars, this month we have: * Mira is brightening * A lunar occultation of Aldebaran * Uranus, Neptune and Iris well-placed in the early evening So, if the sky is clear, grab your binocs (or small telescope) and head out to enjoy what nature has to offer us this month. And, more importantly, share it; people are often surprised by how much there is to see with even small binoculars. I hope you find it useful with your binoculars (or small telescopes). Please note that the charts are necessarily of low resolution, but clicking on them will take you to a higher resolution version. To grab your (free!) copy, or to subscribe (also free) and receive it monthly, please go to http://binocularsky.com and click on the 'Newsletter' tab.
  11. Oops. Sorry; posted in error.
  12. Looks similar to the 7-Day Shop one. The main issue I found is that the leg-clamp tension cannot be adjusted. In my experience, they tend to be used a lot with astro binoculars and slacken after a while. That said, you're likely to get a good 11 quid's worth of use before it becomes too slippy. Typical of cheap ball-heads. Consider the Basics tripod with joystick/trigger-grip head, pop the head on the monopod and you still have a sturdy tripod (ideal with, for example, the SW Star-Adventurer or iOptron tracker).
  13. Various posts on CN, such as https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/594151-current-crop-of-parallelogram-options/?hl=%2Buniversal+%2Bastronomics#entry8200950
  14. Your best ever view through your bins

    Sagittarius/Scutum overhead from Inyanga (Zimbabwe) on a still June night in 1982. It was superb enough just lying under those stars with the naked eye (Uranus was an easy naked eye object, it was that dark), but with the Zeiss Dekarem 10x50s I had at the time, it was simply stunning.
  15. DIY Big Binoculars mount

    Unfortunately, Larry Patriarca (the man who traded as Universal Astronomics) has retired, so no more UA stuff is being made.