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Ben Cole

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Everything posted by Ben Cole

  1. Sounds like the one that made me mutter "holy s**t" out loud to myself!!!
  2. Thanks everyone. I don't enjoy moving but at least I'll be in relatively dark skies after many years in and around the "big smoke". Hopefully my astrophotgraphy will come on in leaps and bounds. That's what I'm looking forward to also. The plan is for this to be our family home for the forseeable future so it will be worth making alterations and provisions for hobbies etc. (observatory, home cinema room, garage for sports car etc ) Up until now the wife and I have been all over the place due to education, training and career pursuit. All is great except for one hitch. I'll be working at Swan
  3. Well I've had my scope for 5 months or so now and it's been pretty frustrating...as expected. When I bought the telescope it was a long term purchase and knew it wouldn't get much use at first due to the awful light pollution here and too many big trees in the back garden. Now both my wife and I are relocating which means we'll buy a house in Wales. Every time I go back there I marvel at how much more i can see in the sky. Not that it'll bother anyone else but I just had to spout how much I'm looking forward to getting to use my scope in some good conditions. :) :lol:
  4. Wow. Just wanted to get a few pics....2 hrs later...I've just come in. I gotta be in work at 7am!!!!
  5. Only just re-entering the hobby myself so I can't really offer much advice. You might find that it is worth buying a new telescope AND mount because the the mounts seem to be very expensive on their own. Then you could sell one of your scopes on ebay or astro buy sell. It would be helpful to know what equipment you have ie. Digital SLR etc.
  6. Any update Steve? Any other recommendations from anyone else? What about getting the Meade 5000 set from FLO instead of the Baader Ortho 5mm and the Meade 5000 32mm? How does the 5.5mm Meade 5000 compare to the Baader Ortho 5mm? Can I ask any more questions?...............
  7. That's good to know....I'd rather throw money at FLO since you've been very helpful since the start. Of course the price has to be right
  8. Or try the absolutely awesome freebie software "Stellarium" Google it. Up there with the best free software I've seen.
  9. Yes Steve, link is the same. I won't go for the one on ebay cos he wants 80quid for it. I told him that I thought it was on sale for 100quid and I'd rather pay the extra for a new one. Of course at the time I didn't know whether I was right or not but thanks for confirming it for me. Sounds like a nice EP though..might have to do some research...shame FLO doesn't stock them!!!
  10. As listed here Steve? http://www.telescopehouse.co.uk/page.aspx?theLang=001lngdef&pointerid=45738sd2jyZONBp6IZah0QGIWp4Chzrf&action=lnk I presume you mean to go with the 32mm rather than instead of?
  11. Thanks guys. So it looks like an ortho for planetary..that's that sewn up as it seems consistent with my research. Looked at the Meade Series 5000 for a wide field which seems a good bet. I missed out on this auction on eBay but am in contact with the seller for a deal. I can't identify the eyepiece. It matches the Series 4000 super wide angle but it says its a 2" fitting. Any ideas? http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=003&sspagename=STRK%3AMEDW%3AIT&viewitem=&item=130072441608&rd=1&rd=1 If you know what it is and have an opinion on it's performance pleas
  12. With my Skywatcher Explorer 200 came 25mm and 10mm eyepieces. So to extend on these I'm looking for one around 5mm for planetary and lunar when conditions allow. A 32-40mm for that "spaceship porthole" view and then if necessary or advised replacements for the 25mm and 10mm. For the short term I am in the process of buying some Meade 4000 series Plossls. A 6.4mm for planetary and the 32mm (from Andrew hopefully!) for wide views. Also getting a 9.7mm Meade 4000 as it's a good deal. Thanks to advice from Andrew and research on the forum I'm aware of the limitations of the 32mm in terms of AFOV b
  13. Well thanks for the info astroman. TBH I wouldn't know whether my scope was collimated well or not. I'd read about the shape of objects out of focus being doughnuts and thats what I've observed. All stars look like the ring nebula The question about collimation was just a small aside in a topic about me being chuffed with my new scope. It may need some tweaking but what I can see so far looks great so I'm very happy. This thread has been taken off topic by peoples willingness to help. Thanks for the sentiment but I'm happy with my scope....I'm sure I'll be back at some time asking for adv
  14. The barlow basically is the camera adapter. You can unscrew the lens from the end of the barlow but I couldn't focus it like that.
  15. Difficult enough to get it in focus WITH the Barlow. Without it was impossible.
  16. Finally a clear night. So I got out back on the patio and tried to get set up. Not ideal as I have a long garden with trees all down either side. But it did allow access to the usual suspects Saturn and M42. Little bit fiddly for my first polar alignment but after about 20mins of unpacking and adjusting the mount was set up. ON goes the telescope and there's Saturn. Even with 10mm eyepiece and 2x Barlow there was no appreciable drift even after going inside for a cup of tea for 30mins. Very pleased and impressed. Also after a manual pointing the scope the hand controller is great for moving ar
  17. Thanks Captain. That method of alignment should be fine for me then. IT'll be a while before I have a requirement for drift alignment that's for sure :shock: Probably looking to do a max of 1-2mins exposures I would have thought. With the weather being so awful I thought I'd get the polar scope properly aligned during the daylight today so I'm good to go............now just need some clear skies!!!!! :x
  18. When you say "for visual observing" are you implying that it's not very accurate? I was under the impression that if the polar scope was aligned to the mount correctly and the reticule is properly mounted, if I then line up the stars to their correct markers it was as accurate as I was going to get. What other steps are there to align more accurately? Or do you just mean get polaris in the "big" circle not the small polaris marker circle? The manual for the EQ6 and the HEQ5 is the same so I have the images.
  19. Captain Chaos to the rescue (again) Thank you!
  20. Thanks Blinky. After thinking about it and realising I had a more detailed reticule than I expected I came to the conclusion that the reticule with the different stars on it negates the need for any calculations with/calibration of the setting circles and reticule. I gather the calculations the manual describe are to account for the varying position at any given time of the year of the NCP relative to Polaris. At least if I am correct here I can align.....then improve my knowledge later to allow navigation by setting circles.
  21. In order to do a possible sidestep here maybe the following question can be answered. My polar scope reticule doesn't match the one the instructions says it should have. It has diagrams of the big dipper and Cassiopeia. If I line these constellations up and get polaris in the little circle then I am polar aligned correct? I don't need to mess with the setting circles etc? (provided the polar scope is correctly aligned to the mount axis and the reticule is centred)
  22. Probably the first of many questions. First up...when preparing the mount to do a polar alignment I am confused by the following. I tighten the setscrew on the RA setting circle to lock it at zero as instructed. The instructions then go on to say: "Now rotate the telescope around RA axis so that the RA Circle indicates 1h 0m on the bottom set of numbers " And shows this diagram: Problem is, after I've locked the setting circle the setting circle scale doesn't move at all except when the screw is unlocked but in this state the circle just slips about. I can't see how it could ever move when
  23. Not many things can make me sit and watch something on the web for 7 mins...awesome clip. Mind you I nearly turned it off when the fat bloke came on. Steve, off to check your link now.
  24. Ben Cole


    Nice. I have a 350D and have just got my Explorer 200 so I hope to be capturing similar images soon.
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