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timwetherell

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About timwetherell

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  1. In my town some street lamps that face peoples bedroom windows have one side painted black (presumably by the council) so I guess it can be done. Might be worth asking
  2. Some of the older kelner eyepieces had barrels that were about 35mm long and pop up occasionally for cheap. But if you're just looking to extend, one option is to buy a really cheap barlow and take the lens out
  3. Thanks for posting this! I'm just about to begin building an observing chair myself and this has been really useful to me
  4. Aperture wins if all other things are equal. Bigger lens/mirror brighter image, higher theoretical resolution. But it comes at the cost of bigger telescope and longer cool down. The atmosphere is going to limit resolution to about 1 arc second at a good site with the target at zenith. Planets in the UK typically 40° above the horizon you'll be doing well to get two arc second resolution much of the time. If the big telescope takes an hour to set up and another to cool down, you'll probably only use it three nights a year. If it's quick and easy, you may use it ten times that often. At the university I used to work at we had a 24" cassegrain with a 6" Astro Physics refractor finder. on the vast majority of nights, Jupiter looked better in the finder because the big scope hadn't come to equilibrium and it's not like there's any shortage of light from jupiter. I had much the same experience observing jupiter with the Lick 36" refractor - if I'm brutally honest, the 7" AP set up outside gave a better view. Nothing wrong with big telescopes, they do enable you to do more. But personally I'm a bit wary of the urge to go bigger and bigger as it's not always conducive to increasing your enjoyment of observing
  5. Bear in mind that the planets will all be miserably low from the UK in the coming 5 years so (1) chose a scope that can easily point towards the horizon and (2) don't expect to be able to use as much magnification as normal which to some extent may negate the advantages of larger aperture. An 8" will do better service on deep sky objects than a 100mm will, but personally, I'd probably go for the 100ED on an equatorial mount if possible. It won't keep up with a dob on deep sky but that probably won't matter in a heavily light polluted area. it should give you nice crisp views of the moon and planets and double stars and the tracking would be a Godsend for those kind of observations.
  6. Nice sketch! Looks like you teased out lots of detail - well done
  7. Venus is getting rather low now - lots of atmospheric dispersion to contend with - not helpful to observations but very pretty!!
  8. Agreed, definitely something to have in your kit, especially since at about £50 a pop, they're also relatively inexpensive as far as eyepieces go!
  9. Yes they are, aren't they! In some ways I like the orthos better than wide field EPs - especially on the moon. The views just have so much punch and clarity I remember back in the 70s having a book by Patrick Moore where he recommended orthoscopics for most jobs. Back then I just had the 0.96" Huygens eyepieces that came with my Dixons refractor and could only dream of the exotic orthoscopic - so I think quite apart from the outstanding performance, there's a certain romance attached to them for me.
  10. I'm a big fan of the humble orthoscopic!
  11. Yes, my guess would be just that. Some sort of software on a guide star that deformed the mirror to make it look like the theoretical diffraction pattern. As you say, skyward lasers wouldn't be so good!
  12. SOLD
  13. Of course
  14. Antares 2" 1.6x Barlow Lens With Twist Lock. In excellent condition. Comes with end cap and original box. Asking £50 which includes UK postage
  15. I'd imagine that within a decade, some form of adaptive optics will start becoming available for amateur scopes which would be a real game changer on the large aperture ones. If and when it goes on sale in the UK some sort of cloud dispersal system would also have to be included in the package