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About martinl

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    Star Forming

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  1. Living at 60 degrees north Saturn transits the meridian at only 9 degrees this year but the seeing was exceptionally steady tonight, with the Cassini division clearly visible in my 150mm Mak at 150x despite the low altitude. The Mak, of course, struggles with low powers so I was relegated to using my humble APM 50mm RACI finder (which didn’t come with a Strehl report (!), perhaps I’ll run it through WinRoddier at some point for fun). 12mm Delos / 17.3x: Saturn clearly had ears, but no separation between the planet and the rings was visible at any time. 8mm Delos / 25.9x: The rings were visible as an object separate from the planet the entire time, with pitch black separations between the planet and the ring. So despite an inferior optic and Saturns lower altitude my results were completely in line with Steve’s, a fact I find surprising. Perhaps we are up against the limits of human vision, rather than of optics, when trying to discern these tiny details at low powers? Next time I’ll bring my 20mm Plössl. With the Celestron Ultima Barlow that should give 21.4x and a bit more with a few mm of eyepiece extension.
  2. Interesting. Galileo’s telescope, which he used to first observe that there was something strange going on with Saturn, supposedly gave around 20x magnification. I can see the ears with my 20x60 binoculars, but I haven’t tried low powers with my refractor. I’ll try my TV85+28mm=21.4x next time I have the chance!
  3. I wouldn’t worry too much about your potential future needs for two reasons: 1. Your EP preferences (AFOV, eye relief etc) will evolve over time, so anything you buy today may not be what you want in the future anyway. 2. Your Mak, being a “slow” scope, is very easy on EPs and there are a great number of cheap EPs on the market that are very good with slower scopes, the BST Starguiders for example. You could buy a whole set that works very well with your current scope for the cost of one single high-end EP.
  4. I just bought a pair of NF Chilkats. They seem fairly good (only had one outing so far) but they still leak heat through the soles. 3h at -8C and my feet were not too happy, despite oversized boots and extra wool socks. Does anyone have an opinion on different types of insoles? Do the aluminised ones work? Felt? Sheepskin? I’d hate to go through the hassle of electrically heated insoles.
  5. Jesus! You only average 2.4 hours of observing per day? That’s it. I’m moving to Toronto!
  6. CONTRASTING is the word you’re looking for. Looks great. Excellent idea!
  7. @jock1958 Interesting. What do you use the flat for, and where did you get the angled piece?
  8. Ask, and ye shall receive: https://www.berlebach.de/?bereich=details&id=598&sprache=english
  9. It should work. A few comments: 1. If your 18650s have built-in protection circuits they are slightly longer than standard 18650s. My protected cells wouldn’t fit in a similar case. 2. That BMS is for LiPos. You’ll want to double check that the over/under voltages are ok for Li-ion. 3. Charge all cells fully before before installing them to make sure they are balanced and give the BMS an easier job.
  10. Hmm... (Slowly removes finger from the “In Cart” button on the Telescope-Express Ercole page)
  11. Now that’s interesting. How did he end up with that EP before everyone else? It’s a shame they didn’t mention the connection between the moon and the Tele Vue equipment he was using. Would have made for a great story (especially for the US audience).
  12. Yes, £350 paid with bank transfer will see it delivered to the UK.
  13. In addition to bank transfer I can accept PayPal, the price would then be £365 / €430 to cover their fees and exchange rate.
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