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About PadrePeace

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  1. I run this same rig with the focuser, a 460EX/EFW guided by a 60/30 mini guide scope and a QHY5L-II M and so if you could slip a Lum layer of Ha in there somewhere it has the makings of a very capable scope. I’ve additionally also played with mounting the DSLR as a counterweight for double shooting. No images yet though but balance will be key. Happy to share the SW adventurer adjustment mod with anyone having difficulties with the IOptron system.
  2. Here's my effort with the ASKAR 180 at NGC7000. A very busy target with so many stars but chosen to test the scope into the corners. Doubt it will win IoTD but this new scope is setting the standards at only 180mm for a flattened triplet with ED (unspecified) glass, likely to be 51 class I'm guessing. Rig: IOptron Starguider Pro with ipolar. SW 1.75'' tripod Canon 650D modified Askar 180/40 triplet Pegasus Focus Cube V2 mounted with one of AdamJ's 3D printed casings. Camera and scope mounted through bits stollen from a Star Adventurer mount to give me better control of initial target alignment. All comes in at just over 2 kg so well within Skyguider Pro spec (5kg). Home made 12volt 6.6 amp hr LiPo power box which doubles as a counterbalance weight. Red Dot Finder for initial target alignment. Data: 24 x 240s subs 1600ISO tracked but not guided. ipolar align accuracy really helps here. Flats/Bias/Darks to suit Misc: Capture through NINA and processed in PS. This has been very slightly cropped to remove sub overlap issues as I shot this over two nights. Stars were good to the very corners so the in flattener works with a crop sensor. I had blue fringing on the brightest white stars. I chose to process it out but this could have been left not distracting at all in my judgement. Your preferences may vary. I'm chuffed with the results especially for only 1.6hrs integration. Hope this helps y'all. Below is cropped, the second is uncropped but as you'll see the star shape doesn't change.
  3. Don’t get me wrong guys. I’m not getting at any particular brands. Without them we’d have no hobby. They were just examples of what is out there for us to choose from. AdamJ’s points above are sound but if you find you exclusively love TS, APM, WO whoever, then that’s great if you are getting what you want. We are all different, we buy different makes of car, white goods etc, but they are all bound to a number of common supply chains. Mass produced Optics are the same and as AdamJ point out they are all individually different. When someone quotes, and ive seen this in articles and adds that they had their scope hand picked by (insert head of x brand) how can that be construed as anything other than what is being said here. There are great and poorer copies out there. What makes brands different is the consumer, your preferences for a colour, bias towards your first scope supplier perhaps, price point, pick a metric. Doesn’t make you right or wrong. Just don’t expect everyone is having your experience with their copy of X 107/700 or X 100 or whatever it happens to be. What counts is how brands react once you say you are unhappy. In this dept FLO as a supplier seem to stand out from the crowd. That’s priceless.
  4. And I think that’s the point AdamJ is reasonably pointing out here. There is lots of ‘branding’ laid over the same fundamental supply chain TS, APM, Sharpstar the list goes on because most of the many brands out there do not make their own glass and cells so no matter what they claim it’s a lottery whether you get a good one or a poor one from the Far East. The only thing that really counts in my experience is post sales customer care; If it’s not up to scratch what are the brands prepared to do about it? That’s all you are paying more for. On ‘top quality glass’ I’ve recently seen a pretty poorly ground LZOS lens optical report so even the Russians push out iffy stuff. Retailers will claim all sorts of things and sometimes back it up with a published optical report. The point is you cannot be sure you’ll be buying a scope with that advertised optical spec and thats because brands don’t optically bench test (interferometer) all of their glass before selling it to you. At best they rely on a specification placed with their supplier, which if that isn’t met, no one will be any the wiser cos no one can afford to check how well your glass is ground and configured in its cell, so buyer beware. An optical report as a sales pitch is just that ... it’s also the report they decided to share with us. Don’t get sucked into the hype around premium branding alone. There are good scopes and poor scopes and price doesn’t always count. This site is full of evidence on that point. Finally, before the re-attack starts beware brand snobbery as some of the best astroshots I have ever had the pleasure of seeing have come out of AdamJ’s 130PDS. It’s all about how you use and tune it as a photon gathering instrument and then how well the data is processed. Just saying....
  5. Thanks everyone for chipping in and for the humour. 6/32 it is and hot of the press Pegasus are mailing me what they think are the correct bolts having accepted that M4 on an FT focuser won’t work. Good on them.
  6. John Thanks for that link. I’m guessing the thread is 6/32 then?
  7. Thanks Adam. If I don’t get a definitive answer I’ll have to take you up on that. I asked Starlite but they haven’t replied.
  8. I have a Feathertouch 3” focuser that I am trying to fit a Pegasus Focus Cube 2 onto. The Cube comes with M4 bolts which Pegasus say fit the focus locking thumb screw and associated grub screw so that you can mount the cube. I have found that these ‘M4’ bolts don’t screw all the way in only about 2 turns before binding. I have physically compared the two threads side by side and the Feathertouch thread is not M4. Pegasus say they are M4 on their 3.5” but I don’t have one of those so that’s not really helpful. So What? Has anyone fitted a Auto focuser to a FTF3035b 3” focuser and can tell me what thread size bolt I need? I’m guessing it’s imperial.
  9. AdamJ Post stacking: I’d: 1. Remove the stars in Straton ( zipproth.com/Straton/ ) in all three layers. 2. As you go through Save and Label the associated filter on the three ‘star only’ images and the 3 ‘starless’ images from Straton. 4. Load up (in PS) and work on / stretch each ‘starless’ image as required. 5. Once happy with your Ha, OIII, and SII nebulosity work, load up the 3x ‘stars only’ images into PS, convert to R, G, B as is your palette preference. 6. Convert the 3x ‘starless’ images to R, G, B iaw your chosen palette. 7. Recombine the ‘star only’ images to make one star layer. If you have any unsightly halos due to different star sizes in overlap there is a good adjustment technique using PS ‘Channels’ below which will help you control and resize stars for each filter so they match up better. https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=My+most+powerful+astrophotography+processing+secrets&docid=608050129387850451&mid=BDE02CD6764A7FB8D2B5BDE02CD6764A7FB8D2B5&view=detail&FORM=VIRE 8. Layer up all 3 ‘starless’ images together with the combined stars image for final none distructive tweaking as necessary. Flatten, Job done... Straton is/was A one off of £10 if Starnet++ is not your thing.
  10. David I would suggest that making yourself a thread spokesman by “representing what some others where thinking but did not state” to justify your own bias is perhaps a little rude and helps no body. When I posted this thread I needed help and not attitude. Perhaps if you think I “should employ another technician” you would be so kind as to suggest one? That would help us all I’m sure. Once again I offer my thanks to those that offered help and to SGL for giving us all a valuable forum where that can happen. That way we all win.
  11. For Sale: USB 2.0 Ranger® 2304: £110 SOLD Ideal for connecting with a distant obsy. This is an industry standard plug and play, four port USB 2.0 high speed extension solution, enabling USB 2.0 connections at up to 480Mbps over 100m/330ft of Cat 5e cabling (Ethernet). The Ranger 2304 provides an integrated four port remote USB 2.0 powered hub delivering 600mA to each port supporting all USB 1.1, 2.0 and 3.0 device types (up to 480Mbps). The full spec and manual is available here: https://www.icronshop.com/icron-brand/icron-ranger-2304?gmc_currency=1&gclid=CjwKCAjwnrjrBRAMEiwAXsCc44u4oy1F1H5EPMvnbbqZRvwjaTcfx7ewU52doX_oXCku1rX7nW9rRBoCotAQAvD_BwE Free P&P for UK Thanks for looking
  12. If it helps anyone Rob does this in his spare time as a hobby along side his own astronomy. He can get the parts or will be happy for you to do that and will always discuss those costs with his customer first before any cash is spent. He makes no profit from the parts. He pays what you pay. In my case I decided to source the parts myself as he had lots of other draws on his time at that point and I wanted to move the process on as quickly as possible. His hour rates are better than fair and I’d go as far as to say surprising. If my board had not been fixed I’d have owed him his postal costs only. If anyone wishes to know how he operates they only have to contact him. He’s a true gentlemen so please don’t get the wrong impression from his FB page. He’s one of us and happy to help fellow gazers when things go wrong because he has the skills and believes it’s the right thing to do. As a final thought, if anyone is ripping off customers its the chip suppliers who will not split their minimum retail packs up and over charge on post and ‘handling’ charges (whatever that markup is for). So chips do actually cost pence but you cannot get them individually. This is why not many bother with repair these days. It’s such a perverse thing that we trash our gear for the sake of guys like Rob and a small chip (or ten). just saying.....
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