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    Doncaster, UK

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  1. Hi all, Unfortunately I got hit with the flooding in Yorkshire, I've lost my telescope to the flood water! I have an iOptron SmartEQ Mount and and i'm planning to replace my telescope with a Zenithstar... but which one? I shoot with a Pentax K3 II which weighs in at 800g (Body Only) and my mount can carry a load up to 6KG, leaving me 5.2kg for scope and flattener (if required), can anyone recommend which Zenithstar would be best for a beginner out of the 61 / 73 / 103 Thanks :)
  2. Hi all, I have a Pentax K3 II and an iOptron SmartEQ Pro+ tracking mount, I need a mounting plate to attach the camera to the tracker, can anyone tell me what I need? I have looked at a few mounting plates but I'm not 100% sure what I need. Thanks Rob
  3. Up there? its not in the arctic tundra its only 160 miles north from me. Thanks! I totally forgot about the astrotracer! I don't get much chance to shoot anything and I have never used it before.
  4. Hi all, I'm setting myself a challenge, I have just under 3 weeks to go before I make my way to Kielder! The challenge is to take my first DSO pictures on a budget! I have 3 targets, Perseid's for obvious reasons, Andromeda and possibly the Elephants Trunk Nebula, (if this one is doable?) there's no moon and there all in the NE no nice and er easy! no light pollution filter needed either as well there isn't much where i'm going! And my view is directly NE over Kielder reservoir! So far I have the following equipment / software: Pentax K3ii inc 50mm, 18-55mm and 300mm Lens' Laptop Stellarium What equipment do I need to gather, inc cables and software? I'm not bothered about overly long exposures so an Alt AZ go to mount and refactor scope should do me, I don't have either! can anyone recommend one as cheap as possible? or is any one selling one second hand? I also have to learn how to use them! Thanks for you advice on my (personally anyway) ambitious project! Rob
  5. You are completely missing the point here, they are not amateur astronomers, not yet anyway(I hope this creates a few!), They are a Scout group, the requirements of the badge I hope to work toward with them specify that they must BUILD a telescope : Build a telescope from two cardboard tubes or two A4 pieces of black card, and lenses. Compare what you can see through a telescope and what you can see with the naked eye. It also has nothing to do with astro photography, they must use the scope they build to investigate they sky, with their eyes. The only reason I would like something a little more than 2 cardboard tubes is because I hope to create something with the group they can be really proud of and use for years to come, something that I hope will help them catch the bug rather than something they just throw in the trash, they have a large open field at the side of their Hut which makes a great viewing area. Thanks for the offer Stu, I have a 76mm mirror myself that's spare, I was hoping to use something a little larger, because... why not
  6. Thanks both, I don't have the time or electrical skills to do this then so I will start saving!
  7. Part of the requirements of the badge is to build a telescope, and then use it to observe, remember were talking Scouts here , they don't stick fire lighters on some wood to make a fire, they do it the old fashioned way, why should a project like this be any different? it would bypass all the design, wood / cardboard work and mathematical and tool skills they would learn, whats the point in that?
  8. Hi all, I'm planning on helping my local scout group work towards their Astronomy badge, I'm hoping to reach out to our local society to arrange a visit, but would very much like to build a scope with them as a group, does anyone have any plans to build a half descent scope? I'm thinking heavy duty cardboard tube type of thing. Also, if we manage to make it successfully, what are the chances of spotting any kind of detail on Jupiter? Thanks
  9. Hi All, I have a very basic EQ mount that came with my celestron astromaster 76, is it possible to mount an auto-guider to it for my DSLR camera? I don't use it for the scope anymore and would rather use it to practice my photography before investing on a much more expensive mount. If its possible, can you recommend me an auto guider? Thanks
  10. So I basically need 2 scopes, one for planetary and one for DSO and a good EQ mount for both scopes. Can anyone recommend a scope for each? Ill have a look around for a second hand mount. Doncaster does have an astronomical society based at Austerfield but their website is rather vague about joining and they only allow members of the public on site on Fridays.
  11. Its not negative Philip? A GoTo would probably be ideal but again I don't really know much about EQ mounts or if they can be combined at a later date?
  12. I would be quite happy to shell out £1000 but it its overkill for a Doncaster back garden and three of four trips per year to a dark sky zone then I would feel disappointed spending that much, like I said the price varies wildly and I don't know enough about the technical workings of a scope to know what I'm buying, the cheaper the better but I don't want to be wanting for more
  13. Hi all, As some of you have helped me before, you may remember I had a Astromaster 76EQ bought for me, I have had a play with it but it basically isn't up to doing what I want from a scope its not powerful enough to get a descent glimpse of the planets or sturdy enough to use with my DSLR... so its time for an upgrade, Iv'e been looking around and the choice is as varied as the price range! I would like something computerised that can give me a good view of Jupiter Mars and Saturn especially Saturn's rings! I would like some deep sky objects as well Andromeda and some Nebula maybe. I'm going back to Kielder but not until Oct'17 so I have plenty of time to save but I also dont want to be buying something that is far more than I need. Can anyone suggest a scope for me please? Thanks
  14. I fully intend to use my current lens' but I still need to know how to work out what lens' to look out for when the time comes and with 2 kids to shell out for plenty of time to save before any of my earnings go to me ha! Thanks, I can see the Samyang has a large clear aperture from the pics, very surprised by the price as well! cheaper than I anticipated I will read through the links when I finish my current University module. Cheers happy-kat, I've read this one already
  15. Yes that's the one! I'm back off to Northumberland in August, I'm quite happy to play about with my Kit lens' for now but it gives me some time to save up for a better one, Kielder observatory is probably one of the best places in England to snap the Milky Way so I'm going to give it a go! But I'm having trouble understanding all the details when it comes to lens' and how to work out what the clear aperture of the lens' I'm looking at are? I understand the bigger the clear aperture of the lens the better its light gathering capability but how do I work this out? Can anyone link me to a lens? Thanks!
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