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Everything posted by Ledge1962

  1. My posty is getting plenty of exercise, a Skywatcher 8" Collapsible, Astronz 2" 42mm EP, Shroud for the Skywatcher, heater band for EP's, Turn left at Orion book, autocollimator, Bobs Knobs for the Dob and th eposty still has more to do. Just preparing for my retirement in 7 years time
  2. I can not argue with the Moistons theory, I bought a Skywatcher 8" Dob, and it was a clear night right up until I finished assembly and went outside. The moistens must have escaped into the atmosphere when I opened the door, as it clouded over immediately. They have not dispersed since...
  3. Nobody nearby that can swap handsets to cancel out a faulty one? I had similar issues with the XX14g, but it turned out to be the balance. I had is so well balanced that the slop in the gears was the issue. I made it front heavy and problem was gone.
  4. I have the 1.25" XCEL-LX barlows (2x and 3X) and they do a good job in my f10 sct. Out of interest, I put them together to see if they would act as a 5x Barlow, but the magnification was laughable. I find I prefer to use the straight eyepiece without the Barlow, but if I need one, the LX certainly does the trick. The LX Barlows struggle around the edges on the F4.6, but that is to be expected, and as I prefer deep space, I rarely need to use them.
  5. Let us know how the star test goes please
  6. As an after thought, I did have to adjust the mirror by adjusting the spider vanes as it was off to one side. The photo of your secondary clearly visible in the tube looks like it is in need of centering via the vanes too??
  7. I had a problem similar, so I took the mirror out completely and placed it on a piece of clean white paper and traced the outline of the mirror. After cutting out the shape, I then folded the paper in half horizontally and vertically, so I could find dead centre of the shape. I marked the centre of the paper with a black dot and attached it to the face of the mirror with very soft tape on the edges and put the mirror back in the scope. Then using a laser, I adjusted the rotation and tilt until the laser hit the mark on the paper. After gently removing the paper, I took a photo and measured how central the mirror was, and it was pretty close. After that, Astrobabies guide did the rest ...
  8. Hi all. Sorry for the late response, the battery weighs about 6kgs so is not light. I agree, I am not a fan off grease on these type of bearings as our area is pretty dusty at times. I will approach Orion and see what they say as I don't want to void any warranties either. Thanks for the suggestions, I will try them out this weekend.
  9. "i've seen eyepieces for sale that "guarantee" bringing out the colour in nebula etc"... There are a lot of filters on the market that increase the contrast of colours, but I have not heard of an eyepiece that does it. As Waldemar states, we use the rods around the outside of the eyes to get night vision, and rods are not colour sensitive. It is a shame we have that limitation in our eyes as seeing colour in the stars would be amazing. I can not see (no pun intended) how looking through any EP could change what the Rods pick up.
  10. Personally, I actually enjoy the setting up and tearing down the scope
  11. It is natural to be nervous of new equipment. Honestly, when I bought the 14", I got stressed trying to figure out what I could touch and how bad the views would be if I didn't collimate it. The views were fine and with the assistance of the good people of this forum, I now have added a Kendrick heater to the secondary mirror, I collimate the scope with ease and have even gone so far as getting an autocollimator. Give yourself some time and read Astrobaby's guide a few times and you will become proficient at tuning. I personally (others may have a different view) would not suggest getting the autocollimator until you understand the basics of the mechanics of the scope and a bit more experience, as the instructions alone will give you nightmares.
  12. Hi all, I can not find an answer on Orions site, but I have the XX14G and wonder if anyone has any idea as the maximum weight is that can be put on the turning base plate. I want to put a 30ah battery on it so it can power all the heaters etc, but I am not sure what is defined as an acceptable load. I do not want to destroy the bearings any faster than necessary. Any ideas please? Also, does anyone know if we need to lubricate the bearings on the Dobs? Thanks
  13. I started with a 4", then went to a 10" SCT and now a 14" Dob. I have a good area in New Zealand that doesn't suffer from light pollution, and have a good view of the sky so I do not need to move them, so housing them gave me the freedom to go to whatever size I could afford. I have looked at 16" but the change from 14 to 16 is not worth it, so a 22" will probably be next. If I had gone straight to a 22, it would have been a lot cheaper and then I could have started saving for the 36". Aperture fever is very contagious.
  14. I lost a lot of sleep reading about, and watching all the videos on collimation. JG777's advice (above) with the links to the cap, the Cheshire and Astrobaby's guide is what I ended up using and it worked great. While it seems daunting the first few times you do it, it soon becomes second nature and you will find yourself carrying out collimation with ease. The members of this site are awesome when it comes to helping out, so I recommend if you get stuck, take photos through your collimation cap (a cell phone does this surprisingly well) and put them on here. The members can then advise what you need to do to get the scope lined up. I did and got good advice on a simple process that I was over thinking.
  15. That is a good question, and I am currently looking for a new torch as my one has become invisible, Does 3watt sound to bright?
  16. The wife would definitely agree with me being a Nebula, she is always complaining about the gaseous clouds I leave behind.
  17. Hi all, A bit of a moan here, but also something other amateurs like myself "may" need to be aware of. I could be wrong with my "assumption", so feel free to correct me. I was collimating my Dob with the standard peep sight to put the secondary mirror in the centre of the sight tube. I even took a photo and measured the distances to get it close I then aligned the primary mirror reflection so it was centred in the mirror as per the standard procedures. Everything was lined up nicely and the primary centre spot was (no pun intended) spot on. I read an article on configuring your secondary mirror more precisely as I was not sure of my abilities to do so using the peep hole. The directions said to first put the cross hairs on the sight tube over the centre mark on the primary mirror regardless of where everything else was. So, I put the crosshairs on the primary and adjusted the secondary collimation screws until the primary centre spot was under the cross hairs. BUT, no matter what I did, it put the secondary mirror way off the perfect centre and nothing I did (following the rest of the logical instructions) would get the cross hair over the centre mark while the secondary mirror properly reflected the primarys centred reflection. In the end I went back to just lining everything up with the peep hole, but wondered why it wouldn't work... My assumption... I took the photo down the tube and overlayed it with a symmetrical cross hair lined up with the vertical wire on the tube. This is what I got. I do not know if this is enough of an error to stuff everything up, so could the more learned Users comment please. Thanks George
  18. Hi all. Has anyone tried the heater pad around the circumference of the tube to any great degree of success. I too am getting hit with dew on the XX14G so would be interested in success stories. I ordered the Kendrick Split heater but that is a few weeks away. I will post the results once it arrives. I did try a 12v hair dryer, but it barely heats up and was only good for the eyepieces..
  19. I am suitably jealous of those photos :)
  20. A good success story Nige. I am having issues with a cloud magnet too. I bought an ES30mm a month ago and it has been cloudy ever since. The one night it was clear, I was under the weather (no pun intended) so someone up there hates me...
  21. Ledge1962


    Hi Kapitein, welcome to the site. I am a newbie too and at 56, I wish I had started earlier. The sky is beautiful at night with the naked eye, but with the scope, it is like having a new set of eyes and a completely different landscape. I hope you are as awestruck as I am..
  22. I have used the skyguider a few times and can say it is a well built piece of equipment. I first used it with a visual polar alignment (just best guess with the eyes, not the polar scope) as I was still having difficulty with locating the South star. I took 5 x 5minute exposures with a 6d and Sigma 28mm lens. The photos were slightly over exposed, but there was little sign of star trails despite the lazy alignment. The guiding motor is very precise and quiet. The half speed option to take landscape pictures with no star trails is brilliant. The battery lasts well between charges and the buttons are easy to use too. I considered the handset, but for the price you pay, you do not get full functionality with it. I have since mounted the base on a 4x4 post in the back yard so I can just attach the guider without having to realign each time. As long as you keep the base covered, it stays clean and rust free. Bottom line, I am happy with my one and do not regret buying it. Now if I can find a way to hook it up to a PC.... This is the 1st pic I took with the 5min exposure, and I have a lot to learn, but this gives an idea of its tracking. This is very low quality copy, but it gives you the idea.
  23. Thanks all, your assistance and patience has been awesome. I underestimated how much was involved in collimation as I have been using a 10" sct.
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