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Everything posted by Franklin

  1. Sunlounger, planisphere, binoculars, great way to get to know the sky. Once you're familiar with the sky, finding all the good stuff with a telescope becomes so much easier.
  2. I had a Vixen Lanthanum 8-24 Zoom which I think is probably the same as the Stellalyra and it was brill. However, I did move on to the BHZ MkIV because of the wider AFOV.
  3. Baader Hyperion Zoom and Barlow are a great buy. Just add a long focal length eyepiece for low power widefield and you may never need to purchase any more eyepieces. I've tried a few zooms and they are ok but the Baader MkIV is in a different league. Since getting the Baader MkIV Zoom, x2.25 Zoom Barlow and a Baader 36mm Aspheric the rest of my eyepieces have become somewhat redundant. Although I still use my Orthoscopics for Planetary/Lunar viewing.
  4. Just wondering what others opinions are of screw on dust caps? Up until now all my scopes have had push on dust caps but I recently got a SW72ED which has the screw on type. The black paint has started to come away from the thread inside the dew shield revealing a shiny thread, which not only is bad for light scatter but is it depositing microscopic flakes of paint on the lens? I've taken to removing the whole dew shield before unscrewing the dust cap and then replacing the dew shield back to front on the tube so the shiny thread is not in the light path. Do others do this? Seems like a bad design to me. Wish it had a push on dust cap!
  5. I've been looking up at the night sky for over 40 years now, equipment nothing special, but never tire of the amazement of it all. There is definitely a trend towards imaging these days and I'm sure it's all related to digital technology. Back in the day with 35mm film, manually guiding for hours on end, no thanks. But today with all the techno gadgets and fancy GOTO mounts, imaging must be very rewarding for many. I think also that advances in Professional Astronomy has turned many to imaging because the modern Astro Imager can today capture things which only the Pros could do with analogue and the worlds largest telescopes not that long ago. All of the older books on Amateur Astronomy depict a hobby which still had avenues for doing actual science, which is what sparked my interest as a kid, whereas the more modern literature depicts the hobby as Stargazing for fun and amazement. Just take a look at Sidgwick's Amateur Astronomers Handbook and compare it to Dickinson & Dyer's Backyard Astronomers Guide. I love all the old books and a part of me still wants to believe that it's still possible to do real science in your own back garden with a small telescope. I think in vain. I wonder how many of the Astro Imagers use all this new technology they have at hand to do real science, rather than just taking amazing pictures? Using digital image capture to hunt down new comets or discovering new Nova in distant galaxies for example. I wouldn't think that many. To that end......... Does the World need yet another picture of M42 or M31? Of course it does! Astro imaging capabilities today are astonishing and hats off to all who give it a go. But for me I'll stick with my 4" refractor, a pair of binoculars and my battered old copy of Norton's.
  6. BST is short for Barsta which is the name of the eyepiece manufacturer in China.
  7. I used to have a Revelation 42mm Superview and used it in an f10 refractor. It was great as a finder eyepiece but the outer parts of the field were not the best and the field edge was not very well defined. I also tried a William Optics 40mm Swan which was a lot better but still showed some field distortion at the edges. I now use a Baader 36mm Aspheric which I am very pleased with, though the scope I use it with is at f11. I think for faster instruments you have either got to put up with a little edge distortion or save up the pennies and invest in one of the high end widefield eyepieces.
  8. Hi Al, Can't get my txt messages to work on here so just letting you know the Porta arrived today. Many thanks and clear skies.
  9. Thousand Oaks are a reputable solar filter supplier, so yes this would be ideal. If DIY your own filter be sure to follow the instructions carefully and don't stretch the film too tight.
  10. I stripped down, cleaned up and re-greased an old CG5 head a few years back with the aid of some very helpful info/videos online, but THIS is something else! Thanks Alan, can't wait for the rebuild, as I definitely struggled to set up the worms properly and remove all that pesky backlash!
  11. Thanks Dave. I took your advice and got a 10mm Nylon M4 Thumbscrew for the Q barlow, works a treat.
  12. Oh good. I was thinking of just using the optical element from the Q barlow for x1.3 but was not sure if the BHZ 1.25" nosepiece would have enough in space to accomadate it. I guess I'll just wait till I get it and have play. Thanks.
  13. Hi, just ordered a BHZ MkIV and was wondering from those of you who have used it, will it work ok with any barlow(I have the Q barlow) or is it better to pair it with the dedicated Baader 2.25x zoom barlow? Thanks.
  14. Fantastic scope if you can get a good one. Some of them are around 30 years old and may have spent a lot of that time stuck in the corner of a damp garden shed! They are still in production now, called the Vixen A105M II, retail about £800. Considering what you can get in the ED doublet department for that money I would say nay. But a decent secondhand one usually sells over here for around the £150-£200 mark.
  15. Hello Commander, I'll have two if still available, preferably with the same sized knob! Cheers.
  16. Looking for a Vixen A62SS/A80SS/A81M/A80M/A80MF. Must be in good condition. Thanks.
  17. The curse of Mankind. Not content with polluting the enviroment of our precious little planet Earth, they are now polluting outer space! Whatever next?
  18. I was watching ED TINGS excellent telescope reviews on Youtube the other day and I became annoyed when his videos where being constantly interrupted by advertisments for a super-duper spotting scope built with new technology that only the military where privy to. Fair play to Mr Ting as he reviewed said spotting scope in the next video. Needless to say it was a useless piece of plastic tat!
  19. ADVICE FOR NEWBIES. If you are thinking of buying a telescope or any kind of astronomical equipment don't even look on Amazon/Ebay and their kind. Stick with proper astronomical equipment suppliers such as the sponsers on this site and many more reputable astro dealers who don't just sell stuff but offer sound advice and excellent service.
  20. Knowing when the next asteroid is going to hit planet Earth maybe?
  21. Parcelforce are the best. I've sent stuff all over the world with zero problems. I used to use Hermes and others and had no problems and they are cheaper. BUT since covid lockdown there seems to have been an avalanche of online shopping and the smaller firms just can't handle it. They used to send their own vans and lorries round but now anyone and everyone are becoming delivery drivers and the quality of service has consequently suffered. Not turning up, lost parcels, wrong addresses. In the end I gave up on the budget firms and now just use Royal Mail and Parcelforce.
  22. Maybe my IQ is suspect but I think I've had a eureka moment. Baader Classic Q set can be used as follows. 1. All 4 eyepieces in Turret to be used at their native focal lengths. 2. Q Barlow lens element unscrewed from Barlow body and fitted to the Turret nose-piece will allow all 4 eyepieces to be used with 2.25x factor. 3. Q Barlow complete, used with a single eyepiece for 2.25x factor. 4. Q Barlow lens element unscrewed and fitted to the nose-piece of a single eyepiece for 1.3x factor. I was hoping to be able to use the 1.3x factor of the Q Barlow and still be able to switch eyepieces with the Turret but that is not possible.
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