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mikeDnight last won the day on March 3

mikeDnight had the most liked content!

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About mikeDnight

  • Rank
    Red Dwarf

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  • Gender
  • Interests
    Lunar & planetary , binary stars & comets.
    Visual astronomy in general and an advocate of sketching as an aid to observing.
    I also have a passion for refractors and optics in general, and have a deep interest in the history of amateur astronomy, the astronomers and their scopes and observatories.
  • Location
    East Lanc's

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  1. It's an easy issue to resolve (pun intended). Simply leave a telescope outside to acclimatise for an hour or two on a winters night, then place any short focal length eyepiece straight out of a warm house into the focuser and aim your scope at a planet. It doesn't have to be a complex multi element affair, even a simple Mono or orthoscopic will do. The view will boil and agitate until the eyepiece reaches thermal equilibrium.
  2. There's an unboxing and first impressions video of the Technosky 102ED on Utube that's worth watching. The lunar surface is exquisite, with only a fine colour fringe to the lunar limb. Not sure what camera or eyepiece he was using, but the CA could be introduced or added to by either, especially if it was a phone camera. Visually, the CA wouldn't be anywhere near as evident.
  3. I'd imagine having the roof sections in a vertical position could be problematic if there's a strong breeze, and the canvas sheet would be both noisy and would act like a sail if there's a wind. When I built my observatory back in April 2011, I decided I'd build the walls high enough to shield me from near by street lighting, which meant giving up some sky nearer the horizon. As my seeing tends to go off below 30° I was happy to give it up. And of course if I ever wanted to get to the horizon, I could always use my scope on a tripod. I decided to make the roof a ROR on an angle iron H frame.
  4. I'd be very surprised if there's any difference between the glass types in these refractors if they are in the same price bracket. My friend paulastro recently bought a Technosky 102ED and is very happy with it. I must say that although I haven't used his scope yet because of the lockdown restrictions, it looks a very impressive telescope. I can't imagine the manufacturer making an FPL53 & Lanthanum objective for one brand and an FPL53 using a different type of mating element for another brand, it wouldn't make economic sense. I strongly suspect the only difference, if any, will be purely
  5. When I first take my eyepice box outside, I generally leave it open to the air for a while so as to allow the warmth trapped inside to escape. After ten or fifteen minutes or so i will then close the lid to prevent the eyepieces from becoming excessively cold, and to prevent moisture forming on any metal or glass and becoming accidentally trapped within the box. A warm eyepiece will kill fine definition when you're looking at intricate or subtle planetary detail, so it's a fine balancing act on particularly cold nights, and if it does that with the planet's, it dose it with everything. At the
  6. That's strange. If he's told you its a common problem, its the first I've heard of it. If SGL can't shed any light on the issue, you might try Cloudy Nights where there's a massive Tak following. They will almost certainly be able to advise you.
  7. But do they come with a strap to hang them around your neck? That could be a deal breaker if they didn't.
  8. That's a shame about your rod breaking Paul, and the lack of interest from your metalwork teacher, though I'm not surprised. Still, if your interest had grown so that you were drooling over Fullerscopes, & Charles Frank ad's then I suppose your little 60mm had worked its magic. And you're still enthused by it all four decades on. ☺
  9. It does look flimsy doesn't it. Yet it's surprisingly solid. The tripod is made of steel and doesn't flex, and the altitude locking rod holds the tube really steady. The weak spot is the neck of the Altaz fork where it connects to the tripod. When the locking nut is loosened there's some minor wobble, but nothing drastic. At the end of the day its just a nice vintage refractor thats a bit of fun.
  10. I noticed you seem to be having a lot of fun with your Telementor Stu. It's a beautiful looking scope! I was informed tonight that the lens for this model of Tasco was made by Towa Optics. I've no real idea how good Towa were, but the lens looks brand new. You never know, I might end up selling my Tak now.
  11. The rod thingy acts a little like a Hargreaves strut I suppose, but it also has a slow motion altitude adjustment on it, so very posh! I might take it to Kelling to show what a real scope can do.
  12. Thanks for your responses everyone. It seems like these scopes might have a lot to answer for. More may be revealed as others join in.☺
  13. Well I couldn't resist it for £40. It's a blast from the past that really is quite a nice scope - really! The tripod is quite heavy and solid despite it looking flimsy, but best of all is the telescope itself. As far back as I go in astronomy, Tasco has taken some stick for producing less than good quality telescopes, but my first look at tree branches and roof tops in the distance, reveal the objective to be very nice, showing no immediate colour fringing. The two HM eyepieces, 20mm & 12.5mm, that came with the scope produce pleasing views too, but I had a 20mm 0.96 Kellner lying aroun
  14. Televue's are nice in the longer focal lengths, and that's probably an important point. I use a binoviewer with a barlow for lunar and planetary observing, so there's good eye relief with 25mm to 10mm. The 18mm is my most used focal length. For star fields and nebulae the 35 to 20 are beautiful, though the mental block of 50° might plague some. Plus I don't wear glasses for observing, so long eye relief isn't essential for me. I think if I were to return to wider field eyepieces I'd go for the Baader Morpheus range, and perhaps a 30mm XW or 31mm Nagler as my lowest power. It might also
  15. Some targets just look great in a wide field eyepiece, where as narrower fields just don't frame it right at the same magnification. A good number of years ago now, I was observing the planets with a friend but only had my 20mm Pentax XW with me as a wide field eyepiece. My friend offered me the use of a five element Meade 4000 26mm super plossl. I was a bit insulted as I was a Pentax snob and had an aversion to anything Meade. I reluctantly put the 26mm into my FC100DC and was stunned by the instant clarity. Also, the 52° field was essentially the same real field visually as my 20mm 70° Pent
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