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Everything posted by crepitis

  1. You can also check what aspect the rings have at any given date, past or future with stellarium.
  2. Hi, and welcome to the forum.
  3. I know exactly what you mean, I just pretend I know what they are talking about and nod politely, its all way over my head.
  4. Thats a pity your boys arent interested, mine like to have a look now and again, the older one is very much into physics and chemistry at school, so he likes the science aspect, but I think his younger brother just likes the "wow" factor and loves to know the distance to what hes viewing , maybe in a few years they will lose all interest and leave me to my solitary pursuit in the garden .
  5. Hi Astro_Baby, the one big advantage I noticed was showing other family members some great views without having to re-centre everything before they took over at the eyepiece I was also able to centre M42, just prior to it dissapearing behind the topmost branches of one of our trees in the garden, left it tracking, went indoors to catch a bit of the BAFTAS, and when I came back out it was still centred in the eyepiece but had now cleared the trees. Sadly my night vision hadnt recovered from the BAFTAS.
  6. Managed to get out last night for an hour or so, and it looks like the drives are working OK , now that I've figured out where the leads should actually go. Tracking seemed fine, but battery life doesnt seem too good, although that might be a combination of the very cold temperatures and the "no frills" batteries that came with the drives. What a difference it makes not having to manually re-centre your field of view every couple of minutes. ( Im still a bit of an Astronomy Luddite, so any kind of technological advance , no matter how primitive, seems revolutionary to me )
  7. I own both books and they are both very good, however TLAO is the one I use most often "in the field" as it were, with "Backyard" being more of a book that I browse through from time to time, its beautifully illustrated and a joy to "dip" into, but if I had to choose just one of them, especially for someone who may be starting out, I would definately go for "Turn Left".
  8. I think I may have sorted out the problem. Firstly , the RA motor was not 100% tightened up. Secondly, the printed instructions showed the wrong alignment for the connections, with the RA and DEC shown as connecting up to the wrong motors. With my, hopefully, corrected adjustments the mount appears to be moving in the right direction, but so far I have only managed an indoor appraisal due to heavy cloud cover here. Once I get a chance, and clear skies, I will post an update.
  9. great first light report Astro_Baby and I must confess I had a wee laugh to myself when I read "ps scue rotten typing but I have been working almost 18 hours straight and my fingys are numb. "
  10. Thanks everyone for your help, hopefully I will get to the bottom of it
  11. Hi Peter, that sounds like a good way of checking if they are actually running. Excuse my ignorance, but how would I be able to tell how much the RA has rotated, is it just a visual thing or are the setting circles involved in some way ? As I say..excuse my ignorance
  12. I was using my TAL refractor and was observing the moon tonight using a Televue 20mm plossl, and the moon just drifted out of my field of view in a fairly short space of time. If I put my ear to the drives I can hear them "ticking". Maybe my polar alignment isnt as accurate as I thought ?
  13. Hi Kathleen, the batteries are brand new, and the cables are connected to the right motors going by the instruction sheet which came with them. The clutches are also tight.
  14. Hi Mish, its not synscan, its just a bog standard non goto drive. Its set to North and the mount is polar aligned.
  15. I picked up a dual axis motor drive kit for my EQ5 at the tail-end of last year, and have only recently got around to trying to use it/them. Fitting them was no problem and very straightforward, but trying to get everything working together is proving more troublesome. As I understand it , from advice on other posts here, for purely visual use you only need a "fairly" accurate Polar alignment. I've managed to do this using a compass and Im confident that the RA axis is aligned. However, whenever I centre something in my eyepiece it just drifts out of view, as if no motor was fitted. The drives are switched on, the hand controller is set to north, and when trying the "fast forward" controls the mount slews the scope in the appropriate direction,, but it just wont track in normal mode. Im pretty sure the drives and controller are in working order and its me who is doing something wrong, I just cant figure out what it is. I have tried doing a search on the forum but cant seem to find the info that will put me on the right path, any help is most welcome.
  16. I remember a few years back calling my wife out to have a look at Saturn through a 5" Orion ( USA ) MAK , it was the first time she had seen it and she stepped back from the eyepiece and looked intently at the front of the scope. I asked her what she was doing and she said that she was checking to see if I had stuck a cut out picture on the scope to trick her as there was no way it could look so perfectly "planet" like. It really is so incredible and I love giving people a "first look" at Saturn, no one ever goes away anything but awe-struck.
  17. Somebody is selling a Skywatcher 10" Dob, a 4" refractor on an eq mount, a metal case full of eyepieces,filters etc as one item and the biddings only at £103 at the moment...all the kit you will need...for a wee while anyway. 250mm Skywatcher Dobsonian telescope & 100mm Refactor on eBay (end time 21-Feb-10 20:58:45 GMT)
  18. What a coincidence ! My wife was looking through the new Argos catalogue today and I noticed they were selling a "no name" pair of 10x50's for £39.99 and I said to her that anyone would be mad to buy them when all they had to do was be patient as Lidl every now and again sell good 10x50's for less than half that price....
  19. Yup , I think a collimatable diagonal sounds exactly like the kind of thing I could end up making a right mess with , so I think I will class mine in the "nice to have..but dont touch" category. The felt inside my tube rings is a rather tired green looking material...possibly off-cuts from an old snooker table from the local KGB social club.
  20. On the subject of the TAL diagonal, are there any markings to denote that it is the TAL original ? I'm presuming that mine is , but there are no markings on it, unlike my other TAL bits, (eyepieces, barlows etc). I read somewhere that the original diagonal is collimatible, I have no idea how on earth one would carry this out or when it would be necessary, but it would be a nice option to have.
  21. Thats exactly the same as the focuser on mine Astro_Baby, when I got it at first I was a bit confused when I saw pictures of other examples of the scope, and was a bit unsure why mine had a different focuser. I posted about it on the TAL user group and more experienced TAL users, including Andy were able to put my mind at rest . I really like your red linings on the tube rings, it makes an already good looking scope even easier on the eye.
  22. I got this book a few years ago and Im sure I paid a dashed sight more than £5.50 . well done Brendanof, you cant beat a good book bargain. I picked up the Dorling Kindersley book "Universe" in a charity shop a while back for £2.50 and its a stunning book, large format , fantastic illustrations and loads of great info, and at £27.50 less than the published price I reckon it was a bargain. There is a "Backyard Astronomer" website by the same guys who wrote the book, and another book written by Dickinson and well worth getting is " Nightwatch".
  23. Cheers Andy .Just have to keep my fingers crossed one turns up second-hand on the usual suspects, e-bay , astro buy-sell etc.
  24. I had the pleasure of looking AT this telescope, but sadly not THROUGH it, at Neils home ( drizzly daylight at the time ). It looks fantastic, and if the quality of the optics is anywhere near the quality of the fit and finish then I would love to own one, maybe when I win the lottery.
  25. Good luck with your new scope. I used to keep a 10" Dob in the back room, and one of my wifes friends thought it was a water tank and remarked on why we didnt just keep the tank in the loft like everyone else. Needless to say it had to go after that.
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