Jump to content





  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by brantuk

  1. Keele University Astronomical Observatory is open to the public on Tuesday evenings and Saturday afternoons if you're ever in that neck of the woods. https://www.keele.ac.uk/observatory/
  2. Won't be the same without them - got my first 12" dob from them when they were at Cambridge and a hyperion zoom from Lee at Kelling one year. But heck Neil deserves a good retirement after all his contributions to astronomy - so I wish him well with it.
  3. I use the white lettering on black background theme, but I find it also helps to turn down the screen brightness and contrast to suit. Brighter websites strain my eyes. Hth
  4. Nice little project - well worth £20 for entertainment value alone - you could spend that on a single round in the pub lol.
  5. Hi Tim and welcome to SGL What sort of age is your daughter? And what scope does she already have? (model/make). I was going to suggest a Skywatcher 130p on a motorised tracking alt/az mount, but depending on your budget and my first two questions, I may be able to suggest something more appropriate. This is the sort of thing that sprung to mind initially: https://www.firstlightoptics.com/reflectors/skywatcher-explorer-130p-supatrak-auto.html (You can find them considerably cheaper on the used market)
  6. Hi Simon and welcome to SGL Nice scope - I used to have the 12" flextube till I upgraded and it was great. If you need any local help feel free to send me a pm and we can maybe arrange a phone call or meet up one night. I can give you all the info you need about local clubs and observing sessions. All the best!
  7. Here's a view comparison of M13 in different sized dobs from 8" upwards just to wet your apetite (scroll 1/3rd way down page): http://www.obsessiontelescopes.com/index.php
  8. Is this the Freon-40 stuff? I wonder.....
  9. How about a flight case from Maplins or B&Q - not the foam filled ones commonly used for eyepieces - but rather the ones with compartments in that can be adjusted to fit various bits and bobs. I have one for my assorted cables, a few tools, and odd "can't do without" accessories.
  10. Don't forget the CPC's have nylon bearings, and as you add weight to the scope, so too do you add load to, and reduce the life of, the bearings. There is a bearing mod you can do to replace the nylon ones for metal - especially if you're using a wedge and adding cameras, guide scopes, balance systems, etc.
  11. Did you forget to disengage the locking clamp? Leaving it engaged will cause the problem you describe.
  12. I'd love to see him take up the daft argument of "having a warm room" with any major observatory, where they too have warm rooms - or with scientists who use remote telescopes from the comfort of their labs in uni's and research centers all round the world. He's clearly off his rocker so I wouldn't pay any attention to him.
  13. Possibly the hue taken on as dawn begins to break and true dark sky slowly disappears at that time of morning. It can be influenced by density of the atmosphere and if there are any whispy clouds in the higher air. Have you never stayed up for an all night session before? It becomes more apparent what's happening after you've done that a few times. Definitely not lost it lol.
  14. You can get round the Nat Space Center and see everything there is to see in pretty much half a day (3-4hrs). You can spend an additional half hour to one hour in the cinema dome watching a couple of presentations if you want to. Your ticket does allow you to come back any time in the following 12mths for free.
  15. Yeah - I was corrected on this six or seven years ago when I was a relative newcomer and got mixed up on that point lol. Thanks for reminding me.
  16. Nice one Rob - came out smashing despite only a short time.
  17. Yup - I use safety bolts on all my dovetails too. Or I bolt on a mini clamp under the top end of the dovetail bar. Great advice MacC!
  18. Received a Lego Saturn 5 Rocket today - spent all afternoon building the first stage. It's a fabulous kit and amazing how all the little bits go together to make a strong free standing 1m high model. Will pop a build thread and pics up once it's complete.
  19. I've used a 24" dob on a small step ladder with a wide base (standing on rung 3 or 4 and leaning on the top of it) and tracking's not that bad to be honest. You only have to move the ladder once in 15-20mins and panning around is like moving a large circle over a steady background. It takes 7 or 8 mins for an object to move right across the view. It's a quite different experience to using smaller apertures that require constant nudging every 20 seconds or so. The chap I was with was sketching a comet and he had plenty of time to absorb the view and pop down to his desk to record it.
  20. Hi banders - my suggestion would be to obtain a copy of "Turn Left At Orion". It gives you a list of your first 100 objects all in seasonal order, along with finding instructions, an image of what it looks like so you know what you're looking for, and some interesting facts and figures for each one. If you want to make a sketch then that's great - you can then compare your sketch with the pic in the book. Hope that helps.
  21. The 130p, being slightly larger aperture, will allow you to see deeper into space so you'll be able to view more objects. That said however, they are both regarded as small aperture beginner scopes and best views will be of the brighter objects. The dob is quick and easy to set up and use and light 'n' easy to transport if you find a darker area to observe from. You will have to nudge it up/down and left/right to track objects. The 114p is on an eq mount - so you'll need to learn how to do a rough polar alignment which, once done, allows you to track mostly by twisting the flexi cable knob in one axis only. You will only need an occasional tweak of the other axis knob. It takes a little longer to put the tripod, head, and scope together - but we're only talking around 10 mins set up time, give or take a few. And as pointed out above, you'll want to be a little more choosy with add on eyepieces. Not a lot in it really despite being fairly different mounts - but for a total newbie I'd favour the 130p dob for an easy going intro to the hobby. Hth
  22. If the dent has affected the collimation it'll be a pig to put right. Gotta hammer out the dent and get the corrector plate and secondary mirror properly aligned. Not a task I'd care to undertake - it needs the right person with the right skills really.
  23. Nicely modified scope - welcome to the "dob mods" club.
  24. Hi Adarsha - I don't know where your buddy in the States is, but Dennis Steele in CA is a professional dob builder/modifier and I'm sure he'd be able to help you out: http://www.dobstuff.com/contactus.htm Hth
  25. Yup I agree - set the latitude scale and use a compass to do a rough polar align. Set up Stellarium Scope to drive it, then click on a target and see if the scope points to the roughly correct location by checking co-ords of where you know the target should be, currently, in the sky during daytime. That's how I do it - usually just by using the handset - to check a mount works when buying second hand.
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.