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  1. Hi Guys, I'm looking for some help, I'd like to upgrade my DOB to a GOTO/Tracking mount. Primary aims are to no longer have to nudge to keep things in view and perhaps some initial planetary imaging via video capture. My scope is the skywatcher 200p (1200mm/F6). While the weight (10kg/22lbs) is well within what the CEM25 claims to support I wonder is it realistic to stick this scope on it? I will also probably use this with just a camera for some wide field work and also learn the ins and outs of EQ mounts, tracking, maybe auto guiding in the future and eventually buy another scope for dedicated DSO AP. Does this approach seem feasible or am I going the wrong way? Thanks, Peter.
  2. Hey, This was a good Messier one somebody posted here a while back - http://www.amazon.com/American-Educational-Elements-Universe-Poster/dp/B005QEHU4Y/ref=sr_1_1/178-3964795-3944152?ie=UTF8&qid=1434279871&sr=8-1&keywords=messier+objects+poster Thanks, Peter.
  3. Thanks Alan, That's what I'm beginning to believe though it a reflector I have. So, is the extension above the piece between the photo adapter and the Orion adapter thus moving the eyepiece further out from the scope? For some reason I had it in my head that I wanted to get the eyepiece closer to the scope, in this case I might try taking the lens out of my barlow and using that as a small 1.5" or so extension. Might just do the trick... Cheers, Peter.
  4. Hi Syediz, Did you ever manage to get this working? I'm having similar issues when I tried my first effort of AP last night with Saturn. I admit I did not try the eyepiece with the adapter for the moon, just screwed the barlow lens into the nosepiece of the adapter was sufficient for that. I could use the same setup for Saturn but the image was obviously quite small so I tried with the 20mm eyepiece. Were you at the extreme of outward movement when you took that picture above? If so it's the same issue I'm having, it's coming into focus nicely as I move out then I hit the limit. It seems like I would need another 2" extension but that seems excessive when already using the Orion adapter. The camera is already quite far away as it is... So from the end of the nosepiece to the CCD (around where the strap attaches) can be between 145mm - 180mm. Does it make sense that I might still need to add another 2 inches to achieve focus? Also, just as an aside, if this is the formula for calculating magnification over primes focus: Magnification over prime focus set up (Mopf) Mopf= (Depccd-FLep)/FLep Mopf= (100mm-20mm)/20mm = 4 The image is 4 times larger than that of a prime focus setup. Where Depccd is the distance from the eyepiece lens to the CCD then is it the very top lens in the eyepiece we are talking about, so around here: Does any of this make a lick of sense?? Thanks, Peter.
  5. I also continue to underestimate the moon, the amount of detail to explore is impressive, it's just never high on my list
  6. Hi Hull, I would think Jupiter or Saturn right now. Easy to find and a lot of details, that said some people are moon & planet people and some are only interested in DSO's, I have to admit I think I'm somewhere in the middle, I like the planets but my ultimate aim is DSO's If you are interested in DSO's the Stellarium is a great help to plan your evening, open during the day and fast forward to the nighttime when you will be observing, you can switch on DSO's and even how bright they are so start with the brightest and take you pick of what will be nice and high in the sky for you. Cheers, Peter.
  7. Hi Azelfafage, I know all too well the problems with choices, in the end here in Singapore the skies are not great so I figured bigger aperture might help!! I've just posted a few details of my observations over the last month or so here to give you an idea what I see with my scope in the limited skies I've had: http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/245308-first-lightish/ If you do go with the Skywatcher and are deciding between the 6 & 8 do check if you can see them in person somewhere, I'm not sure how much space you'll really save with the six, at most a couple of inches smaller diameter but the tube is going to sit at the same height when parked so worth checking is the space saving and maybe 1-2Kg lighter tube worth the 2" less aperture. Mine lives in the corner of the living room when not in use and is pretty unobtrusive, the 6" would not be any less so I would think which is why I went for the 8", the 10" was just going too far to be portable (in the loosest sense of the word!) for me. Cheers, Peter.
  8. First off, I've been lurking with an occasional post here for a while. After finally deciding to buy my first scope a few months ago I finally settled on the Skywatcher 200p Dob. Being in Singapore we don't have a great selection (i.e. none) of astro shops around so more or less online only. Unfortunately as I just missed out on stock I had to wait and it ended up being 2 months from placing the order to receiving the scope. During this time obviously there were some of the clearest nights I've ever seen in Singapore, of course that might have been mostly because I was looking up a lot more! Finally the scope arrived and I was delighted! The scope itself comes complete with only the finder to attach and the base is simplicity itself to assemble, just make sure you leave the bolt holding the base to the rocker loose enough!! Since I had 8 weeks to kill waiting for the scope I also had a telrad sitting in a drawer so put that on. So far so good, lined up with a corner of a building and roughly lined scope with finder with telrad. I also checked collimation out of the box and it needed a bit of a tweak. First night with the scope set up and things are not looking too good, a few stars out but mostly cloudy so I just use the opportunity to align the scope, finder and tetrad more accurately, a nice simple task. I then notice that Jupiter is out so I point it over and low and behold, a spectacular view even through the hazy sky I can make out a coule of bans and the food moons easily. Unfortunately it does not last long before he drops below the roof line...still though, pretty good for the first night with a poor sky pointing out my apartment window! So drags on the saga night after night of cloudy skies, the clear outside app shows nothing but red for the next week and in my depression I decide to go for some beers (Ok, I'd have gone for beers either way!). Arriving home a little unsteadily at 1 am as I'm walking in I notice a bright star showing and think, could it be, could it really be? Time to check sky map...yes it is, it's Saturn making an appearance. Quickly go upstairs and grab the scope, dragging it out in 2 parts and quickly setup, within minutes I'm looking at the rings of Saturn in all their glory, sharp and clear divide and all. I'm pretty sure the sky is not that clear, I can't see much else but still the view is amazing. Then, back to normal....clouds rolling in and it another couple of weeks when I open clear outside and see green, really it's actually green! Of course by the time late afternoon rolls around they have gone to orange but still, it's not red. Of course then the inevitable happens and I get stuck working late so by the time I'm free I don't have the energy to pull the scope apart and move it even downstairs (though I really should be going across the road anyway to get away from the light a little more). Anyway, I say what have I to lose and I'm also eager to get to know what I can see in any given sky so it's a bout the best I've had for a while, may as well stick the scope out the window at least. Finally, my first couple of DSO's!! M13 and M92 begin to give up their secrets. Even with the local LP being what it is and not being able to get fully dark adjusted I can make out the faint smudge's easily enough, even in the finder scope. Trying a little averted vision with my stock 25mm I can begin to make out the individual stars, amazing...I start to push the magnification up to see if I can't compensate a little for the bright skies, it works a little up to 8mm in fact but that's as far as I can push it. It defiantly helps and again with averted vision I can see a field of twinkling stars. Is it visually astounding, not especially, pretty but not astounding. What it is though is conceptually astounding, I'm looking at 2 clusters of millions of stars, M13 and M92, 25 & 25 thousand light years away respectively. The immensity of it all is staggering and really puts it all into perspective. So, all in all...am I happy? Absolutely. Is the 200p Dob a good scope? Absolutely. Is Singapore a star gazing haven? Absolutely not Onwards and upwards, the more I get to know the skies and the viewing quality on any given night the more inclined I will be to hop across to the field across the road where I'm sure the viewing will be better, I've just been slow to do it so far given the poor nights that we've been having. I also must look into wheels for the base and a good bag solution for the tube to make it more transportable on short notice. Here's to more clear skies folks, Peter.
  9. Hi Azelfafage, I'm not sure how Nat's getting on but I can say for me the scope is great, unfortunately I made a joke on another post that the clouds arrived with my telescope and would probably remain until October...it seems that joke was more accurate than I intended Singapore is not an ideal astronomy location but I have no doubt I'll get some clear skies soon... That said, I have had a couple of brief chances and got a great view of Jupiter on one occasion and Saturn on another. both views were spectacular I have to say. I'm very happy with the scope overall and really don't think I have any complaints. Build quality is top notch, everything fits nice and tight. I did have to do a little collimating after putting it together but easily done with all the posts here and astrobaby's guide. I'm regularly just pointing it out the window (open window!) when I see a break in the clouds, just to get more appreciation for judging the conditions. I will probably end up adding some form of wheels/handles to it at some stage as there is a nice field across the road and even carrying the tube separately (must buy a bag) I would like to stick a bag and camping chair for example on the base and just drag that with me. I guess nice big soft wheels you might get away with leaving the scope on but I'd worry about the vibrations knocking things out of alignment. In summary, great scope in a Less than ideal country Cheers, Peter.
  10. Hi Nat, Congratulations, mine just arrived today (after an 8 week wait!) and it's a beauty if somewhat more imposing in person Not surprisingly the clouds rolled in shortly after but in this part of the world they can roll out again just as fast so hopefully can have a play tonight...now to align the finder scope, check collimation and maybe add the telrad that's been sitting in the drawer these last few weeks! Cheers, Peter.
  11. My 2c (maybe 0.2c since I'm new to this and waiting for my first scope to arrive still!) on the Synscan flextube is that the tube is actually heavier on the flex than the standard solid tube and will still not be great for serious AP. The other disadvantage is that you wont be able to out the flextube on an EQ mount later as the rings will want to be where the trusses are for correct balance so the solid tube at least gives you this option later on.
  12. Hi Nat, I've just been going through the exact same process and also settled on the SW 200p Dob for a few reasons: 1) I'm focusing on visual when starting off, astrophotography is a secondary consideration for now. 2) It was about the best price/aperture ratio I could find for my budget (an excessively high budget for me in Singapore as not a whole lot of vendors here Very envious of all you folks with next day delivery from FLO!) 3) It was the biggest I thought I could manage easily in terms of portability and I will still probably consider some for of wheels for it eventually. 4) As AstroAdam mentioned above, if you later want to get into AP then it can be mounted to a HEQ5. Now, while I wait for delivery (6 weeks already as I mentioned on another thread earlier ) I can try hijack the thread to ask AstroAdam how he finds the HEQ5 for the 200p? Enough stability or would you recommend something heavier, maybe NEQ6? My thinking is that the HEQ5 would work OK but be at it's weight limit for AP with the 200p. Later if I wanted to move into more serious AP I can get a dedicated setup then that was well within the HEQ5's limits and put my 200p back on the dob as a grab and go kit....of course this will all be happening in a galaxy far far away, which hopefully I'll be able to photograph sometime!! Cheers, Peter.
  13. Nor am I! The disadvantage of living on a small island and finally making the decision to buy when the only local seller was out of stock ;( And obviously the last 6 weeks the skies seemed clearer than I've ever seen, last few nights can barely make anything out so I'm sure that'll probably last to around October knowing my luck!
  14. Damn, Waiting on my 8", arriving early next week all going well...now I'm already getting an inferiority complex! Have fun with them guys, can't wait for mine to get here, ordered 6 weeks ago and getting antsy! Peter.
  15. Of course if I get that into AP I may at that stage just replace the whole kit, but I'd like to have the choice not to
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