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156 Excellent

About Rusted

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    Star Forming

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    ATM, imaging, Solar system, photography, blogging, cycling.
  • Location
    Darkest rural Denmark
  1. I'm a martyr to rust.
  2. Excellent workmanship and design! Very impressive result! Are the counterweights bare cast iron? Or have you put some kind of finish on them? They look absolutely superb. If they can stay that way.
  3. How To Safely Lift A Heavy Scope

    Excellent idea for an OTA, but lacks serious headroom for an easy and [much more importantly] SAFE lift using your techniques. I really don't like to be critical of your methods, but all the added links, loose ropes and eye-bolts further reduce your lift headroom and seriously reduce safety. I'll be having endless nightmares, on your behalf, at the sight of that OTA being lifted by such a single loose loop of rope with a simple reef knot. I would strongly urge you learn to use a Prusik loop and figure-of-8 knots to hold the OTA SAFELY and to avoid ANY risk of slippage. You wrap a long loop of soft rope several times around the OTA and then put the loose end through the final end of the loop. GM CLIMBING 8mm (5/16in) Prusik Swen Eye to eye Pre Sewn Heat Resistant Friction Hitch Cord Kevlar & Polyester 30inch Image result for prusik loop lift The multiple loops grip the OTA in a choke hold and controls both endways slippage and rotation. Look at the image and imagine your OTA in place of the climber's black main rope. Don't EVER try lifting with reef knots without using double hitches. Figure-of-eight knots are much safer and can be snugged up to close the Prussic loop tightly to increase your lift headroom and to minimize slack. Personally, I'd use three turns of a long loop around your OTA before slipping the loose end through its own end loop. Then shorten by slipping the figure-of 8-knot to tighten the loop very close to the OTA. Once you hang the OTA by the [threaded through] end loop you will have much better control.
  4. Frustrating focuser problem

    I've often wondered if substituting the working surface with diamond nail files or diamond paper would help. The price of diamond "abrasive materials" has fallen remarkably in the last couple of decades.
  5. PST Stage 2 Mod - Upgrade

    Ken That's very posh!
  6. H-alpha sun 6.4.18

    We had an almost cloudless day here in CET land when it eventually reached a sub-tropical 12C, 53F. So I set up the 6" f/8 [5" f/10 equiv.] on the big mounting up on the platform. Several prominences and one dark, reverse 'Z' for Zorro slashed on the surface. Still adjusting the D-ERF for optimum clarity and freedom from 'scarlet fever' on the background. By far the best seeing to date, until later, when it became rather milky and much more indistinct. The largest prom was absolutely razor sharp at first at 100x [nominal] Cemax 12mm. Though I tried every eyepiece I own throughout the day and even struggled with the binoviewer. Modesty prevents me from sharing any of my handheld 'snaps' or stills from the Neximage5. The prom slowly developed from a rough coated, tabby cat. With its nose on the ground, joined to two pairs of trousers, hanging from its 'washing line' tail. I pray I have used the correct nomenclature for you experienced solar perfectionists.
  7. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    Easter Monday and another quite sunny morning between clumps of cloud. Two large prominences, while the bright feature continues to plod across the Sun's surface in H-alpha. First success with the T-S binoviewer + 1.6x GPC + 40mm [2"] extension in H-alpha. Tried 26, 20 & 10mm pairs of Meade 4000 Plossl EPs. The 26mm were best and easiest to use because I was literally bending over backwards to look upwards to stay on axis. After removing the binoviewer I took some handheld snaps through a no-name 20mm Plossl using a short zoom Canon. The trick seemed to be to give the camera a chance to adjust automatically before fully depressing the shutter. Too early and the contrast was far too much. Wait, on the half-cocked button and the surface texture showed up more evenly. I ought to thank all those who have helped me get this far more quickly than I could ever have managed alone. We all stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before. [Sometimes, it's the only safe way to reach the eyepiece!]
  8. In the simplest terms the [partially] cut-out rectangle provides a little flexibility in the plane of the [very stiff] fork material. The adjustment handle is placed at the far end of the lever formed by this partial, rectangular cut-out. While the axis shaft is placed much nearer the fulcrum. [imaginary pivot point.] So the handle can provide very gentle adjustment of friction at the pivot due to the increased leverage. Imagine a crowbar: Small changes of pressure on the free end have major effects where you are lifting something really heavy. Even smaller changes of pressure on the free end allow fine adjustment of pressure at the "business end." Meanwhile the force applied by the adjusting handle's fine screw thread provides even slower motion. Which means even finer adjustment of applied pressure [and friction] at the axis. Okay, I'm a complete pedant when it comes to explaining things. I can't help myself.
  9. Excellent workmanship and design! Did you ever make an end stop for the dovetail? A simple protruding rod pointing down from the OTA dovetail would suffice. It doesn't have to be on the mounting dovetail itself.
  10. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    Good Friday: Had hours at the telescope in an almost cloud free, sunny sky until after lunch. Then later after 5pm [CET] in poorer seeing. Very even surface texture with lots of detail including the clouds in the prominences using the 12mm Cemax. No focuser, just slide and lock the EP with the PST screw. Not very smart! Still thinking about the best way forward for giving the D-ERF fine tilting adjustment via threaded rods. [Studs or all-threads.] I'm still getting an asymmetric red blush at times. Hope its not the PST etalon. No binoviewing in H-alpha yet. The binoviewer GPC badly needs compression ring support. [Coming soon.] The present 90mm [white light] Vixen will be swapped for the 7" iStar for WL viewing when the dome is finished. I have the Baader solar film filter already made for the 7". It was used on the Mercury transit with far more detail and image scale than the Vixen could ever manage. I presently take the telescopes back down after each use for winter weather protection. Not easy when the ladder has to be managed one handed, going both up and down, with icy treads. Both the 6" and 7" telescopes will eventually be permanently placed on the big mounting. It has occurred to me that optics for solar observation should be as clean as possible to increase contrast. Mine aren't!
  11. heads up new AR 30-3-18 pic added

    Clear as a wotsit here in CET Land after a whole day of snow yesterday. My first serious, simultaneous, H-alpha and white light viewing. I had the H-alpha [120mm equiv.] set up beside the 90mm white light. Side by side on the big mounting, up on the observatory platform. The bright feature, in H-alpha, near the limb, seemed to have altitude variations. Several small black spots and clearest surface detail yet. Some nice 'curtain' prominences too with excellent structural detail in the "clouds". Can't wait to go binoviewing when I get better clamping arrangements from new kit in the post. Imaging will have to wait until I am properly set up and not crunching about on wet snow and ice.
  12. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    I quite like the T-S binoviewer, at its lower price point, but is has some very silly design flaws which seriously detract from its true potential.
  13. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    Hi Peter, I presume your Skywatcher Barlow is standard 31.8mm OD?
  14. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    Some images to help clarify the effect of adding the T-S GPC to their own binoviewer: It instantly becomes impossible to use a 1.25" star diagonal!
  15. 6" PST Stage II progress.

    Rant/ The Teleskop-Service GPC/Barlow duly arrived in the post today. Now what? The problem is the sheer, drooling idiocy of those who designed the [XXXXXXXXXX] thing. [Insert a suitable expletive here!!] Firstly, it's diameter is undersized for the standard 1.25" focuser/eyepiece. Secondly, it has unwanted length but won't screw directly into the severely impoverished Teleskop-Service body thread! So, once screwed into the S-T binoviewer nose piece it offers ZERO support for all those silly moments when its great length pushes the binoviewer right out of a fitting! Normal fittings like bog standard 1.25" star diagonals!!!! Normal fittings like a PST eyepiece holder!!! It makes the S-T binoviewer completely and utterly useless unless I am willing to look "straight through" without a diagonal. It makes using a PST completely impossible with the S-T binoviewer! The only way to overcome this crippling, [brain dead] designer malfunction is to force a spare eyepiece sleeve over some electrical tape wrapped tightly around the brand new T-S GPC!! Then it will provide some meager support as it is inserted halfway into a bog standard, 1.25" fitting with little chance of getting a secure grip from any known locking thumbscrew. Grrr! Angry of Rural Wotsit! \Rant