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Everything posted by Bukko

  1. I only said it to try and lighten the tone of the thread.... G.
  2. I think we might have scared the OP away... Hopefully not, but as Marvin highlights the original request, price is a factor. Both the Celestron and HEQ5 are 1000 Euro mounts for a 200mm SW reflector. I agree the other two would not be good choices for the scope, but an option to at least try and shave some of the cost would be to consider the iOptron CEM25P. Over a hundred Euros cheaper, includes GPS for portable setting up, the worm engagement is better than the SW clutch system, is belt driven and the sprung loaded worm will also improve on backlash. I have both the CEM25P and the HEQ5 and I feel the CEM25P would do the job well. I know the CEM25P does not quite have the same payload capacity as the HEQ5, but overall, I think it better. Mods, please don't ban me !!! Gordon.
  3. If you are really going to leave the mount for only a few days, I have found wrapping the pier and mount with a cotton bedsheet is effective at soaking up any moisture that forms. Every few days, take it off and allow fresh air to circulate (And dry the sheet, of course.) Before I built my observatory, I had a pier and mount fitted to the base and used a sheet with a plastic bin bag over it to keep it safe. Worked really well. Long term, of course you need something better but this is pretty much instant. HTH. Gordon.
  4. Hello Vern, Andrew is right. If you have two weights, then go with that option. The shorter the distance between the weights and the mount the better. Depending on your seeing conditions, you might not notice much difference in guiding, but rest assured you are being kinder to the motors and if you upgrade the scope to something bigger, the basic principle will help a lot... Gordon.
  5. I think aperture fever can also be applied to chainsaws; I was happy with my original electric one until I got a petrol one.. Now I htink I need a bigger one... Is there no end to this sickness??? Gordon.
  6. Yes, this is the "little" one. There is a set of three round files that come in a set and each tooth needs to be sharpened. You are spot on about the small narrow chains not lasting, but when I bought it, it was for cutting Laurel branches, not big trees. If I asked, there is probably a neighbour who has a big saw who would come round and cut them down.
  7. Mine is a Stihl, only small with a 40cm blade. The stumps are probably 60cm in diameter and so far since before Xmas I have cut up about 4 tonnes of wood. (not including the branches..) It starts no problem and eats through the trunk unti lit finds mud and stones embedded. TCT tips would have been great. I also have a Bosch mains powered chainsaw, it is OK but not as powerful as the Stihl. I did think about getting a bigger one, but didn't think I needed it, as I did not forsee losing so many big trees at once. Also the bigger chainsaws would carry so much more energy and I would then need to seriously upgrade the protective clothing so a couple of hundred more on the chainsaw would have to include a couple of hundred more on protective clothing too. For what it's worth, I did try and burn some of the branches but it was so difficult to light fresh wood that I gave up and take it all to the recycling centre. The idea of buring it as an easy option was because I was simply getting overloaded with work to do, in addition to the scope/mount/dome issues I was having... Gordon.
  8. Hi Richard, The vagaries of French house insurance... I do have a VERY expensive house insurance, costing around 100 euros a MONTH. But since taking out the insurance, I needed to keep them up to speed with everything built. My mistake was thinking of UK insurance policies. I have loads of value insured but they expected an inventory. The schedule says NO to outbuildings, which was true at the time I opended the policy. So when I asked, I have a problem. The building was not itemised and it was bolted down. They see this as more permanent so should have been itemised. As it is not, sorry they say, but no deal. If it was not secured, it would be covered. I guess everything downwind of over a tonne of materials that would be airbourne would also be covered too... I am in the process of finding analternative insurance company There is a Brit that lives near me and close to Chateau Buzet is a roofer and has been around helping (well, he builds the roof and I help him...) replace it. There are some substantial internal 9x2" planks of wood adding strength and the overhang is halved too. Gone is the pretty pitched roof and replaced with a pent style. I am waiting for the EPDM to arrive and we will finish the roof when it gets here. I am still cutting up the trees that fell, I wish I had got a much bigger chainsaw than the one I got. It does OK until it hits some dirt caught up in the trunk, then the chain is blunted. It would be OK if I didn't also have mount problems with both the ME2 and the NEQ6. And I have not even got to integrating the Scopedome drivers into The SkyX yet... And one of the Lenovo pc's I bought for dome/mount/camera control has already packed up. Looks like a mobo issue. As Win10 pro licence is linked to the mobo, I see a waste of money. And people complain when they retire they have nothing to do... haha Gordon.
  9. Thanks Gina, Sorry to hear you suffered a similar fate, I am hoping it looks worse than it is. The shed was a very good one, as the Mayor asked me to start a club when up and running, then admitted she was only joking. If it is unrepairable, I will get a much smaller and cheaper shed to replace it. I really only need somewhere to store some bits and manage the power and signal cables... I had to cut up the tree blocking the road as the first priority after getting the computers safe, of course. Oh, well. Gordon.
  10. Thank you. I think the domes have nothing for the wind to get hold of so HOPEFULLY they are OK. Bigger concern would have been the roof flew off and hit them. It is very heavy and as you say, the wind does carry a lot of power. Add the rain and htis would make it worse. So I consider myself quite lucky. I have been thinking for a while it would be a good idea to double up on the fixings and have some lengths of 2x2 I was planning on screwing into each corner. My son will be down in a few days and it was on the worklist. Worried about having nothing to do when you retire? I was, but not now. Gordon
  11. Thanks Alan, I know I am not the first to suffer from this, luckily, the scopes are not inside. My internet connection is from there and it was working at 07:00 and stopped arund 07:20 Looking outside it was still dark, but a torch showed me I had a problem, so got the PC's and stuff out pretty quickly. Hoping they are all OK, the repairs will only cost me some time and a few bottles of my finest single malts for the help. Yes, the trees are pretty big, the "good news" is the one on the road was directly south of the does, so I have a clearer view now !! Gordon.
  12. Bit of a shock when it happened - When it was buit, every log was hammered into place tight and there is also a load of screws holding it down inside the joins. We can't do much for a few days until the wind drops off, then I am hoping my neighbours can turn it over and re-fit it. For sure, the plan is to secure it down better. I did not realise we would suffer from high winds, but this morning, the wind turned to a westerly and gusted pretty high. Always something to do... Gordon.
  13. More damage from the wind included my clubhouse holding the pc's and my house 4G internet connection. Luckily, the domes were undamaged, but I have more unexpected work to get one with. The wind caught under the roof and lifted it straight off and flipped it over. It weighs the best part of 300kg and when lifted, tore out the screws holding the bits together, shearing others around the door frame. Its been built for almost exactly a year and has coped well with high winds and rain all year. This one must have been serious. My neighbour is a farmer and he is getting one of his buddies round in a few days, when the wind stops to lift it all back, He has one of those big all terrain telescopic forklifts, so hopefully there will not be much damage and it goess back on OK. Again, a couple of pix. Gordon.
  14. So. Another couple of updates... The weather here continues to prevent progress and first light still eludes me. This morning before sunrise (Friday 13th) I was woken up really early with high wind and heavy rain. When I got out to see what had happened, tow of the big trees were down. They looked in good condition before the wind got them, so I guess it's difficult to work out the condition. So glad I got a decent petrol chainsaw as they will take some cutting up and disposal. Anyway, obligatory pictures.
  15. As often as I can, I use a failure as a good reason not to throw good money after bad and go for an upgrade.. 1 vote for a new observatory, but good luck getting it through the finance director. Or throw a 20 pound tarpaulin over the roof until spring Good luck, Gordon.
  16. Its worth trying to get any shuttering and stuff out of the way before the concrete fully hardens. Easy way to separate the template is getting a second spanner on the lower nut to support it, then undo the top nut. Should be no problem now. But if you think the OSB is in contact with the concrete, then it's unlikely you will get the second spanner onto a nut... How does the concrete look now? Turning grey/white yet? Oh, everyone on SGL loves pictures so don't be shy haha. Gordon.
  17. You should only need a couple of days for the concrete to set enough to remove the template - providing you have not tightened the nuts so much that you need to lean on a big spanner to undo them of course !! Fitting the pier, I would wait until the base turns white; depending on temperatures, should do so in a week or two. Until then, don't try and fit the pier, even if you have perfect skies.. Good luck, Gordon.
  18. Hi Nigella, following this thread too now... Good news on the mains supply to the shed, bit concerned at there being fuses. The modern replacements are miniature circuit breakers (MCB's) and they are about the same size as a fuse, but are switches. (They are a lot more than just a switch, as they will trip on high current too) If you are still genuinely using fuses, then it would be a goood idea to plan in some money to upgrade them to a modern consumer unit and MCB's. Here the internet is your friend if you don't know a good electrician who works for a fair price. Best way to run cables, etc. is to bury (or you could run them high - if you intend to enter the bungalow and go through the loft you could do it directly. Save all the digging and concerns about future works...) best to do it through some sort of conduit. Galvanised steel is good, but so is the idea to use water pipe. Polypropylene is really tough and easier to work with. And as mentioned, it is also a very good idea to separate power from signals. Very short runs of a couple of metres does not matter, but the longer the run and more power conducted (Amperes), the bigger the potential problem becomes. HTH. Gordon.
  19. What are the chances of the Camelia surviving the dome build? They can grow pretty high and looks to be due south... Practice on the smaller conifers first, before turning the chainsaw on it... Good luck with the build and I am looking forward to the thread growing.. Gordon.
  20. Just keep the chain out of the ground, will blunt the teeth really quickly.
  21. Only helps if you have the Lat/Long... Please don't publish though G.
  22. Hi Nigella, Looks like you have a bit of work to do there... Good luck with the land clearence. (A chainsaw is your friend !!!) It would help with positioning if you could do a rough sketch of the surroundings - house, neighbours, etc, plus slope of the land wrt North, South, etc. Gordon.
  23. When our old street was "upgraded" to white light lamps, the old posts did not conform to the new (taller) EU standards so were all replaced. As they were done under a PFI, the contractor would have taken them all away for disposal. I assume there must be thousands of similar posts removed so I guess the issue is tracking them down before they are melted and turned into bean tins or something. But the idea does sound good. Big long piece of pipe, simply cut to size. As said, watch out for zinc coating though. Gordon.
  24. Bukko


    Is it possible there is not enough mass in the assembly now to take up the backlash? Possibly try and unbalance the axis a little and try again. Might work, then again, might not. Good luck. Gordon.
  25. Another +1 for the CEM25P. I have owned two EQ3-2's, I have a HEQ5 and belt modded NEQ6. My son wanted to take up astrophotography again after a couple of years away and was considering another SW. On reflection, we (he) went for the iOptron. It arrived yesterday and first thoughts are it is excellent. He has worked with all my mounts so can compare. It is very light. (transportable) The alignment adjustments are far superior to SW. The drive engagement is better. Axis are very smooth and light, making balancing easy. When engaged, the axis are more rigid than the HEQ5/NEQ6. The built-in GPS module is a hundred pound option for the SW. He got it for an 80mm frac at 500mm fl so fairly similar to your application. Had no time to test yet, due to the weather, but first impressions are all good. Hope this helps. Gordon.
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