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Everything posted by Highburymark

  1. Afternoon Peter,, hope you’re keeping well. If it’s just a case of replacing the blocking filter glass, you need to contact the European importer, Bresser/Lunt in Germany - they’ll send you a free replacement - it’s an easy fit from what I hear.
  2. A few weeks ago I gave a presentation to colleagues at work on solar astronomy - using a pressure tuned Lunt DS as an example. A couple of people asked how easy it is visually to see the level of detail captured in solar ha images. Obviously I made clear there is normally a vast gulf between the two, as imaging involves sophisticated processing of raw data - but it set me thinking about just how many variables there are if you want to achieve the very best views from the scope. I surprised myself with the final tally - which I will list here just in case they might be useful to anyone else. 1. You need the scope on band. Even tiny shifts in pressure affect what you can see, whether you want to dial in proms or filaments and other surface detail. Importance factor 10/10 2. You need good, steady seeing. Morning and late afternoon best in U.K. 10/10 3. You need to tune the double stack filter for maximum contrast and detail. 10/10 4. You need a solar-friendly eyepiece, not necessarily an expensive one. Plossls and orthos fine. 10/10 5. You need to keep magnification down, unless you have perfect seeing, and a decent sized scope. 9/10 6. You need to set up away from concrete, ideally on grass. 9/10 7. In cold weather you need to heat the blocking filter. 7/10 8. You need to grease the piston to make sure it’s holding pressure. 10/10 9. You need a mount that either tracks the sun, or has slo-mo controls. That thing shifts. 8/10 10. You need an eye patch, a cap, and something to cover your head to block our light and really see detail well. You’ll look ridiculous, but if views are great, you won’t give a damn. 10/10 11. You need to try binoviewing, which most people say increases detail, but certainly makes observing easier, as long as you can reach focus and keep power down. And if you’re binoviewing, don’t forget to remove the eye patch you’ve just donned after reading point 10. 9/10 12. You need to ‘clock’ the double stack filter, and also move the sun’s disk around the fov, to find the etalon’s sweet spot. 8/10 13. You need to get comfortable. The longer you look, the more you see, so settle in. 10/10 14. You’ll need a clear sky. Even thin, high cloud can spoil your view, turning the black background sky red. 10/10 15. You’ll need the sun to be active. It’s currently just beginning to wake up from several years of slumber as Cycle 24 wound down. By 2021/2022, things should be hotting up once again thanks to Cycle 25. 10/10 16. You’ll need a large glass of Stella Artois/Long Island Iced Tea/Cabernet Sauvignon at your side. 10/10 Reading these back makes me thankful I don’t image.
  3. Thin layer of high cloud now but managed to pick up two small spots with the Lunt 60. Wrong forum, I know, but surprised to see greater spotted woodpecker, two dunnocksand three jays in the tree at end of the garden today - very unusual for London.
  4. How about a couple of these to compare?
  5. Aren’t you doing this with an Equinox 80 Neil? If so, to get the results you have today is impressive. Such a great scope - certainly punches above its weight
  6. Well, very impressed with what you’re all seeing in white light. Seeing’s deteriorated sharply. Switched from ha to wedge an hour ago and can barely make out any detail.
  7. Has morphed into a stunning arched prom - and excellent seeing here in London. Best ha for some time
  8. I seem to have a slightly different reaction to binoviewing the sun. I don’t think binoviewers show me more detail than a single eyepiece. In fact sometimes less. In solar ha, proms are easier to see with one eye in my experience. What binoviewers do is slightly darken the image, and make viewing much more comfortable, but I don’t get the transformative detail difference that many other users report.
  9. Sorry to hear you’ve been having a tough time Dave. Hope things improve.
  10. Thanks Fozzie! Got the Baader wedge out after seeing this thread and looks very promising for several days to come. Should get some clear spells according to the weather forecast.
  11. Just catching up with this thread after a year or two - so many incredible set ups. Nothing new here, but thought the virus lockdown was a good enough reason for a gratuitous posting of my Tak FC-100 on solar ha duty, and TV85 doing a bit of goldfinch spotting.
  12. Fantastic detail from a 60mm etalon.
  13. For what it’s worth - which is not very much compared to the Apollo - I love my Nagler T6 11mm. If I’m not zooming or binoviewing, it gets used all the time. Have always found it particularly sharp and comfortable, and it seems to be the ‘Goldilocks’ eyepiece for my scopes. Have never tried the 13mm, which also gets great reviews.
  14. What sort of magnification were you using Stu?
  15. Seeing has been poor here for past couple of days too. Obviously that does t help. But the main reason for scattered light and a non-black, blurry background is high, thin cloud cover which may not always be visible from the ground. Like Stu says, I’d also hazard a guess that the problem isn’t your new telescope.
  16. This feels very weird. Three days of clear skies. Working from home, and not much work to do. And even a minuscule sunspot! Probably not the time to say ‘happy days’ but at least there are reasons to be cheerful.
  17. Not an imager but I use a Chroma 3nm ha filter for night vision astronomy - as does Gavstar, a regular contributor to this forum. It’s frankly incredible - a big step up from the 7nm Baader filter I used previously from my city centre location.
  18. Superb focuser, this is a great deal. Check out the new prices......
  19. Sounds like the OP has an exceptional C5, and perhaps a less than average 80ED. Of the two SCTs I’ve owned (C6 and C8 Edge) even perfectly collimated, they couldn’t replicate the tightness of stars through a good refractor, though the Edge wasn’t far off. It does seem, however, as if a very small percentage of SCTs do have outstanding optics, and if you have one you should never be tempted to sell. Can imagine a top performing C5 is a great all-round scope.
  20. Just seen a tweet from the Flat Earth Society saying it “has members right around the globe.” Cheers up a wet Saturday afternoon.
  21. One eyepiece that doesn’t get mentioned much is Takahashi TOE - I have the 3.3mm which is just beautiful in a nice refractor on the Moon if conditions allow. Very comfortable too.
  22. All part of the fun with quarks Helen! Never know quite what you’re going to get. Will keep my fingers crossed for you
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