Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.



New Members
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

25 Excellent

About Ajhayter

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Location
  1. Hello everyone! I saw this video and figured one of you clever lot would probably have a nice use for this. I expect you would still need heat to prevent dew on the outside of, say, an all-sky camera dome - but for electronics that will spend a lot of time outdoors and in somewhat sealed enclosures these could be useful! Solid state, runs off 3V with the smallest one (for <1L of space) drawing only 25ma after it gets started (so 0.07W). No info on pricing unfortunately.
  2. Just to chime in on this, I use a Baader Zoom and have it wide open (24mm) when using go-to and aligning. For the actual alignment stars I then zoom it right into 8mm and get it as optically centered as I can. It's no crosshair, but it's done well. I had M13 mostly-centered in a 102 Startravel for upwards of 30 mins (just looked like a smudge, but for visitors it was a good comparison with the 10" dob set up next to it), and then was quite happy swinging round to other targets. The other targets were usually slightly off, but I could always find them at 24mm, get them re-centered and mark it aligned on the app. After that the tracking was fine.
  3. 10A is the capacity that socket can provide, not the amount that the device will consume. 5A device on a 10A socket? No issue. 10A device on a 5A socket? Bad times (overload of wiring leading to blown fuse, smoking wire insulation, potentially fire).
  4. Correct. I like and want the Mak anyway. As an addition, I'm torn between the stablity of using the frac on the mount (plus being able to expand later with filters for solar and such) Compared to the ease and practicality of a good pair of bins. The more I think on it the more the bins seem to make sense but I still like the idea of both scopes. I'd get all 3 if I could but my wallet says no! Sidenote, I'm pairing this with a Baader Hyperion Zoom eyepiece.
  5. I really liked the motors on the Dob, so I wanted to keep that. With the smartphone features (with a rooted phone to red-shift and reduce brightness) I'll get a lot of use from that. And it's got clutches so I can go manual if I wanted. Still torn between binocs and the frac though. I don't have the steadiest of hands so I'm leaning more towards frac at the moment.
  6. Hey, I'm currently deciding what gear to get for my AstroVan (A tiny little Suzuki Carry 1-man camper ). I've previously had a 10" dob that I had to sell due to lack of funds/transport and I'm looking for gear I can take easily. I like the reviews on the AZ GTi Mount, and with a payload of 5kg max, I was thinking of two options. Either Buy the mount with the Skymax 127 Mak, and pair it with some binoculars for widefield. Or pair it with a Bresser AR102/600. Now being a short FL acro I know there would be CA, especially on bright objects, which is why I think it would pair quite well with the 127 Mak. But then with the binoculars I can sky-hunt while the scope tracks a set target, and Binos are the ultimate in grab and go, say a 10x50 or 12x70 (I haven't researched binoculars much to be honest, just starting on that!). Does anyone have some thoughts to weigh in? Thanks
  7. Just wanted to chime in on this, as my background is hobby PC building. For an i7 based system a good quality 500w is plenty sufficient, even with a high end graphics cards and lots of mechanical drives to run. Having some overhead isn't a bad thing though. The problem is there are lots of bad quality cheap power supplies on the market. Commonly they have bare metal casings but it's not always so, even the cheap ones have started powdercoating black for the illusion of quality. The cheap ones are also always much lighter for having less internal heatsinks, cheaper parts and thinner construction. I know you've already ordered it, but if it's a brand that's not easy to find reviews of I'd consider sending it back unopened and ordering something like a Corsair CX600 or similar from other solid brands like EVGA or XFX http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/low-cost-psu-pc-power-supply,review-32182.html
  8. Just to add I'd be interested if you can get a solid prototype. I'd try it myself but I really don't have the tools or the time I would say if you can make the controlling software run on Linux this is a great Raspberry Pi project. You'd have the Pi running linguider or similar for the guidecam sending guidance updates to the alt-az (using direct control kinda like EQMod perhaps?), while also being able to calcuate and control rotation rate, and also being able to act as a USB controller for the imaging camera (DSLR trigger)? You could even query the mount to get the current target to inform the rotation speed, no input required. Just point and go! Or maybe just updating the arduino controller with the target manually is the way to go. For something like this it would be a shame to limit this to Windows/Mac devices and the associated high battery consumption. Thinking it through even if your's ended up being £200, you add another £150 for the OAG, another £150 for a basic guidecam and bolt on your DSLR and some other minor extras and (lots and lots of work later!) you could be getting some crazy imaging with a large aperture dob on a (relative) budget!
  9. To add to that there's the other Dragons Den critical idea: Has anyone else done it before? In this case I'm afraid yes, people have beaten you (and me, I had the same idea!) to it in the form of the commercially available product known as a Field Derotator. They aren't cheap mind, so if you are DIY minded it could be worth making your own. Here's a guy who's open-sourced his design as a starting point: https://github.com/cytan299/field_derotator
  10. So I'd like to express this is just a theory at the moment. I'd like to try it, but I don't have the funds (to replace the handset in case I screw up) or enough small-scale soldering practice (to reduce chance of screwing up) to try this just yet. To be honest this will likely end up just one of those things that gets thought about but never put into practice as the existing solution (cables) work well enough. I'll certainly update if I get the opportunity to try this though. We currently know that the Skywatcher handet rj12 aux port runs at RS232 voltages (+-13v). As such the cable from the handet goes to a DB9 connector, and we then use an RS232 to USB connector, or RS232 to Bluetooth adapter to connect to our devices. However the handset itself does not run on RS232 voltages. It runs on TTL voltages (0-3v). This is then converted to RS232 (-13v,+13v) by a MAX232 chip in the handset. As such for USB, the signal path is currently TTL 3v(Handset) > RS232 (Handset) > RJ12 > DB9 > RS232 (Adapter) > TTL 5v (Adapter) > USB And for a bluetooth module (e.g. HC05) it is TTL 3v(Handset) > RS232 (Handset) > RJ12 > DB9 > RS232 (Adapter) > TTL 3v (Adapter) > Bluetooth That's an awful lot of middle man. As such I had the following idea - To tap the TTL signal inside the handset and convert that directly to a device, specifically to a HC05 bluetooth module, which runs directly off 3V, which might even fit within the handset casing. This could potentially also be tapped and used with a TTL to USB cable. The RX and TX lines can be easily accessed through pins 11 and 12 of the on board MAX232 converter. Then it's simply a matter of finding a suitable point on the PCB to tap for ground and 3v (Max 40mA draw) Any more experienced electrical hobbyists around with any thoughts on this?
  11. I'm used to seeing dobs mounted a little lower to the floor but that actually looks really good. I really like the storage to keep the stuff in, really ideal for a home scope or one that isn't going to be moved around too much.
  12. It might not be real, and I'm not sure how accurate it is, but it sure is pretty Need to take a trip out of the civilisation bubble myself some time, see things up close... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i9XkTiSNy-c
  13. Equipment: Unmodified Skywatcher 10" flextube auto-dob. No light shroud. Purchased as basic (manual handset), this was my first outing with a Go-To handset attached to it. Eyepeice: Standard Skywatcher 20mm plossl. No filters. Didn't use the 10mm due to wind making things wobbly. Location: Oriented south, on a hill on the outskirts of a major city: https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/50°51'12.3"N+1°03'35.9"W Time: 10PM to 2AM Lighting conditions: Might as well have been daytime. In front of me, the lights of the city of Portsmouth. Behind me, the bright white fluorescent of the large burger van that is on the hill. Plenty of local light spill into the dob and the sky was clearly dark orange, not black/dark blue. Lots of cars/motobikes going past as the location is a popular meetup point for the city. Here's an image of the setup from earlier in the year: http://imgur.com/XB3ZRDT You can see the lights of the city, the orange sky, and the white light wash from the burger van. This is without flash on a mobile phone (though it was an hour or so before it got dark - first time using it properly and wanted clear light to set up with and sight in the finderscope). So how did it go? Better than expected to be honest! I got solid views of Jupiter (The two main dark bands were easy to distinguish and 3 of the moons were visible). Mars was visible but no real detail. Lots of locals came over to have a look as well and loved seeing the rings on Saturn (though you couldn't split them, you could see them pretty clear, not as "ears"). Swinging things round I found splitting doubles to be of no concern, though the colour difference on Alberio wasn't nearly as pronounced as you see out of the city. As the Moon began to rise it had a lovely deep orange as it came through the thickest parts of the atmosphere, and once it rose a bit more it cleared up fantastic. And the moon always has new sites to offer. Ok, challenge time - deep sky fuzzies. Slewing upward, almost vertical, to M13, I was really surprised. It was possible (barely) to see it even in the 9x50 finderscope! And while it was lacking much of it's detail and was still very very dim in the main scope, you could clearly see a blob composed of many individual dots. Super faint though. But could we go further? A short slew later had me in the vicinity of Vega. While I can find the Ring Nebula on manual just fine, I put my trust in the GoTo. After it settled, the finderscope seemed to be pointing where it aught to have. Peering into the eyepeice there was.... nothing. At least at first. After shielding my eyes from the surrounding light, and straining my averted vision, I saw it. Certainly not with any clarity or permenance, but it was possible to distinguish that something was there. I'm now of the firm belief that if you spend all year hunting perfect conditions, you'll never go outside. I didn't have a car to get me out of the city, but I did get dropped off up on the hill. It was a clear sky night, and I had no work to be up for the next day. Make the most of any chance that you get.
  14. Hello, I have a 250px Flextube, that surprised me by turning up with motors on it (which I wasn't expecting based on the advert!). Fortunately I had a little NUC computer from Gigabyte that had a 2.5A 12V PSU with the right pin on it! I've been enjoying views of Jupiter from the back garden here in Portsmouth recently and getting faint wisps of Orion's nebula even in the heart of the city. I'm super impressed and really looking forward to a long future with the scope. So I'm going to build a field battery. I've handled a soldering iron now and again, but only for the very basics. I'm planning on building the circuit below to switch between mains power and battery power without a lot of fuss. S1 will switch between the two power sources (centre off), and S2 will isolate the power sources from the rest of the circuit. The other switches will then be for each individual output. Can anyone offer any suggestions for improvement? The mains supply is a 12v 5A which should provide plenty for any accessories I may get in the future, and the battery will likely be a Tracer one. Also, what do people generally use as output connectors on their batteries? Do you just use cigarette lighter sockets or are there other sockets that are better? http://i.imgur.com/rBwfbO1.png Regards, AJ
  15. Ok, Further research shows that I'm likely to need to bite the bullet and get a Synscan V3 AltAz and cable if I want to do this, as you can't run computer control in bypass of the handset - a handset always appears to be required, and EQMOD isn't an option as it's a dobsonian. Either that or get very funky with a soldering iron and the Syntrek controller, which I'm not so inclined to do.
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.