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Second Time Around

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About Second Time Around

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    Star Forming

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    Kent countryside
  1. Thanks, John. The only reason I asked is that I found some that was supplied flat.
  2. Would it be better to buy the acrylic sheet flat or rolled, John? Thanks.
  3. The large oblong button is the on/off switch. Additionally, holding it down varies the brightness. The small round button varies the colour. So yes, you've got the new, better model.
  4. More about the Black Diamond headlamps from what I posted before. "I'd strongly advise you go for a headlamp that has separate switches for white and red light, plus the ability to dim the light right down. The former is important as sooner or later you'll turn the white light on and ruin your dark adaption. The latter is important because nearly all headlamps are way too bright. By far the best I've found are some of the 2019 Black Diamonds. Confusingly, although the model name (but not the number) remains the same, many have been totally redesigned for 2019 with two buttons instead of just one. One of the great things about them is that only the larger button turns the headlamp on; the smaller button just changes from red to white, but nothing happens when you press it if the headlamp is off. Additionally, they remember the last setting you used before turning off. For instance, if you finished with the red light at its dimmest setting, that's what you get when you turn it back on. Set up like this it means that it's impossible to turn anything on at the start but the dimmest red light - whatever button you push. Not all the 2019 Black Diamond two button range are suitable for us though. Some of them have battery check LEDs that light up when you first switch on. The problem is they're bright blue! Also note that the poorly-named Astro model doesn't have a red light. I started by buying two models, the Cosmo 225 and the Spot Lite 160, that use 3AAA and 2AAA batteries respectively. The numbers represent the max. brightness in lumens. Surprisingly, the red light on the Cosmo 225 goes dimmer than that on the Spot Lite 160, although this may just be a sample variation. The former is also on special offer at the moment because a new model, the Cosmo 250 has just been launched, that seems to be identical but has a higher output. I've just tested this, and comparing all 3 with fresh disposable batteries the 250 is indeed slightly brighter on full power white light than the 225, but there isn't much in it. On the dimmest red light the 225 and 250 are exactly the same. So any of the 3 models are fine for astronomy. There were complaints about older versions of these products having a weak closure on the battery compartments. This appears to be rectified nicely in the new models that have a firm, precise click action. I'd add that, here in Europe at least, these Black Diamonds have a 3 year guarantee. That doesn't of course prove anything, but they're expected to last at least that long. These headlamps should also be suitable for my fishing and camping as they have a waterproof rating of IPX8. This means that they can work for at least 30 minutes submerged to a depth of 1.1 metres (3 1/2 feet). However do note the battery compartment itself isn't waterproof and will need drying out. So for the first time I'm satisfied with a headlamp for astronomy and can thoroughly recommend these 3 Black Diamond headtorches. They're also very reasonably priced. Do check though that you're buying the latest 2 button models. Many outlets are still selling the similar 1 button type that's not good for us. For instance Amazon UK even has a picture of a 2 button Cosmo but the description suggests it's the old 1 button model. For the special offer Cosmo 225 go to https://www.trailblazeroutdoors.co.uk/outdoor-equipment/lighting/black-diamond-cosmo-225-headlamp-dark-olive" However, as Kluson said, don't wear a headlamp when with others as the light will shine into their eyes. Instead, carry it in your hand like a torch. That way a headlamp is dual-purpose.
  5. Many thanks indeed for all the replies. @John Inderby I like the idea of the acetate sheet as I don't think I'd be capable of doing a good job half way down the tube (thanks, Neil). Could I trouble you for a link to suitable acetate sheet (I'm not even sure what it is)? Thanks. If I muck it up on the acetate sheet it wouldn't be the end of the world as the OTA would still be fine. I could then wait until after lockdown to get someone to do it for me.
  6. Rather than flocking my 10-inch OOUK Dob I'd intended painting it with Black 3.0. However I've seen several results that have put me off. I'm therefore after suggestions for which flocking material to use. My hands don't work properly, so it must be extremely easy to apply. The alternative would be to wait until the pandemic is over and pay someone to do it, which I may have to do anyway. Thanks.
  7. I'm surprised this hasn't sold. Complete OOUK Dobs don't come on the market very often, and the 10 inch ones hardly at all. The DOB mount is the best commercial one I've seen, and because of its small footprint can be held close to the body making it very easy to carry. Plus, the tube can be held in one hand by one of the altitude rings. I have both 8-inch and 10-inch OOUK Dobs. Despite being somewhat disabled, I can carry my 8 inch tube in one hand and the mounting in the other. An able-bodied person could probably do the same with the 10 inch.
  8. Barry, there's currently a 12" Skywatcher Go-To in the For Sale section that seems to be well-priced. See https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/355835-skywatcher-12inch-goto-dobsonian/ It's collection only from Colchester, Essex so not too far for you to travel.
  9. They also have a very good focuser that can be upgraded at low cost to dual speed. The mirror is made from low expansion glass so will cool down more quickly. The supplied eyepiece is of better quality than many of the competition. As Astro-Geek said the mounting has many advantages. One I'd add though is that the tube can be lifted by the altitude ring. This makes it much easier to carry, and in fact may allow you to cope with a scope one size up. As said, someone is going to get a real bargain! What with Alan's OOUK Dob on offer, now is a really good time to buy a high quality 10 inch without breaking the bank. I'd add that secondhand 10 inch Bresser and OOUK Dobs rarely come onto the market. Indeed, I've never seen a Bresser and had to wait over s year for my OOUK.
  10. How to Build a Universe by Ben Gilliland. Easy to follow but detailed book on astrophysics (especially the Big Bang) with lots of diagrams. Note that there's another book with the same title by a different author.
  11. It's the first night it's been clear here for some time. Even so there's lot of very slow-moving thin cloud about. However, I've just seen Mercury for only the second time ever! The first was about 40 years ago. It's certainly made my day.
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