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Everything posted by wulfrun

  1. Good point, I'd neglected to mention that. I've done dozens of Russian lenses (and cameras), one thing consistent about them is the poor quality, congealed grease. On the other hand, in this instance I'd be inclined to clean the front element and see how things are before diving into full disassembly. It does look as though decades of exterior grime are this example's major challenge. The one I own is one of the few that still works smoothly, so he may get away with it.
  2. From the CoC: The “not allowed” list is pretty short, but it should be remembered that what can seem to be light-hearted comments and fun to one person, can be offensive to another. This is especially true in politics and religion. Therefore: • No politics • No religion EDIT: I've been following this thread with interest and learned from it. It would be a shame if moderators stepped in and locked it.
  3. My laptop fails due to the processor but it does have the tpm bit. It works fine and does all I ask of it, so it'll be staying on W10 for now. By the time they stop supporting W10, I'll be migrating it to Linux (if the W10 updates haven't driven me there beforehand!). I won't be upgrading it until I feel it's too out of date, rather than due to OS issues. I like Linux anyway, so no tears over W10.
  4. As a minimum, you'll need to set the camera to either aperture-priority or manual. The camera doesn't know there's a "lens" attached since it can't talk to it. Some cameras have a setting "shoot without lens" or similar wording, it needs to be "on" or "yes" or it still won't fire. Not sure if that applies to yours.
  5. Understandable, like most folk (myself included) you've quite possibly read several articles on it and decided it's complicated and best avoided. The first time you try it you'll probably spend a couple of hours faffing about but then things fall into place (not literally, hopefully) and you'll also realise that most of the time you'll need a small tweak of the primary, worst-case. Subsequently it'll be a couple of minutes tops, or even just a quick check-only thing. I thoroughly recommend this no-nonsense guide that doesn't over-complicate things: https://garyseronik.com/a-beginners-guide-to-collimation/
  6. Well done! Just keep well away from the iris (diaphragm) petals. If one of those comes adrift you'll be in for some proper "fun".
  7. A proprietary lens cleaner of some sort? Alternatively, isopropyl alcohol should be fine. There will not be any seal behind the front element, so no pouring stuff on. You'll need to work carefully, so as not to scratch the coating (yes, stating the obvious!). Most Russian lenses are actually pretty easy to dismantle, if needed - you'd probably only need jeweller's screwdrivers and maybe a lens spanner. There may well be instructions online if you search. The Helios 44 is a well-regarded bit of glass, I have one on a Zenith E somewhere. If it cleans up OK, definitely worth a go.
  8. Click on your profile name (top right of screen), go to "account settings". Scroll down a little and on the left side click "signature". I'm assuming that's where you've put it!
  9. Can't go far wrong with binoculars, they're always handy anyway. If you decide astronomy isn't for you, they can be used for sport, birdwatching or whatever else. They're also the ultimate "grab-and-go" and most observational astronomers have a pair or three. Great for "it could well rain" nights, when there are gaps in the clouds to peek through and so on.
  10. The trade name is "Wixey". Not being pedantic, just pointing out the correct spelling, which helps when searching! I have one too, very useful.
  11. True for a Mak, since it's a folded-optics design and physically short. A newtonian versus refractor though, not quite true. Roughly speaking, they are both the same size (length) for a given focal length. The "swing" of the EP position is similar but opposite directions.
  12. One thing you'll find everyone says and is true: no single scope can do it all. Like most things in life, there are compromises to be made and a lot of folk end up with more than one scope just because of it. Saying that, a SW200P (or similar) would only be a bad choice of first visual-only scope if you have nowhere to store it, can't move it around etc.
  13. If you have the SW200P dob on your shortlist, this one should be as well: https://www.firstlightoptics.com/bresser-telescopes/bresser-messier-8-dobsonian-telescope.html No personal experience but folk generally comment that is better for a small price increase. For starters, it has tube-rings - meaning it's easily transferred onto a different mount, should you wish to in future. The focuser appears better quality too.
  14. One thing worth pointing out: all 3 of the OP's intital ideas were EQ mount. Not wishing to patronise but are you familiar with the EQ versus Alt-Az mounts (of which a dobsonian is one variety)? No reason a beginner can't master an EQ of course but an Alt-Az is more intuitive and quicker to set up. A (newtonian) reflector on an EQ can also end up with the eyepiece situated very inconveniently, so it's less than ideal for visual-only. Just food for thought... EDIT: welcome to SGL, you'll get heaps of great advice and suggestions and no-one will deride any "silly questions" you might have.
  15. You'll probably find having both is better than either, so I'd not remove a finderscope. The Telrad works best for getting you close to where you want to be, quickly. The finderscope is handy for star-hopping from something easily found in the Telrad's view, you'll be able to see fainter stars with the finder. Depending what you're after, the Telrad alone may be enough but I wouldn't give up the "both" option.
  16. Luckily my vision remains excellent, so far - especially night vision. I can easily make out Kochab and Pherkad too. On a good night, maybe a couple in the handle but not often. I can still see Alcor and Mizar and just make out Epsilon Lyra as a double, naked-eye (as 2 not 4!) One saving grace is that we're on the edge of the West Midlands conurbation so we don't have to traipse halfway across it to darker skies. Pretty much anywhere west-ish brings improvements!
  17. Yes, the name's a bit of a giveaway eh. I'm pretty close to the racecourse, makes the light pollution even worse when the floodlights are on. I'd imagine Bilston would be marginally worse than here but not much to choose.
  18. I also made a first attempt at this tonight and found it successfully. Didn't last long though, thanks to cloud - just faded to the "eyes" after a few minutes.
  19. No chance here. It looked clear in the main earlier on but there was a haze and light cloud at lower astronomical altitudes. I had a peek at Saturn, which was wobbly and washed out. Jupiter showed me a disk and three moons but almost no detail, barely discernable brown-ish banding being about it. I tried my luck at higher altitude targets and swiftly got clouded out there as well. Oh well, it happens. I did manage to locate the Owl cluster and got a brief view before the cloud spoiled things, so there's a positive (never seen it before).
  20. Almost certainly. If the pack has only two contacts (+ and -) then yes, must be integral. If it has multiple contacts, it could be in the device. Lithium ion and LiPo are generally the same thing, I ought to have used the same term you did.
  21. One thing to be cautious of, you must never discharge a LiPo below 2.5V for ANY cell in a pack (and even that is pushing your luck, 3V is safer). If the pack has a built-in battery-management system, you are good to go. It should cut off if discharged to "empty". If it doesn't have such circuitry, I'd advise against it very strongly. Chances are a vaccuum cleaner or bike battery etc does have a management system but I would be finding out for sure first.
  22. W10 updates are a pain, the "Microsoft knows best" attitude is irksome. If all the suggestions above fail, one I have tried (suggested on here, can't remember off who) is to set the Internet connection to "metered". They know that downloading updates over a metered connection could cost arms & legs so it stops them happening unless you authorise it or set it off "metered". EDIT: does it actually need an Internet connection when imaging? If not, just turn it off.
  23. If it's too cumbersome, presumably that means you don't use it as much as you'd like. Not being smug but you have answered your own question, yes sell it on and find something more suited to your needs. As for what, what do you like to use a scope for? Answer that and I'm sure the suggestions will be forthcoming...
  24. Yes, that one. It might be worth asking if the scope is available separately, should you not want the extras. Maybe it is or maybe they'll only sell "job lot" but no harm in asking. The main downside to using Ebay and their ilk is that you could end up with a bargain or a lemon! Caution required but yes, it may work well too. The advantage of astro-dedicated sites like this is that the vast majority of our members are decent, honest folk who look after their gear and will declare any damage etc. You can easily do your homework on their post-count/content etc and be pretty sure they won't scam you.
  25. There's a 200P up for sale in the classifieds on here, not far away from you if you are in London, as your name implies. Again, on that same assumption it's worth bearing in mind that the majority of galaxies and nebulae will not be visible from inner-city, light-polluted skies. Planets aren't much affected, likewise the moon. Finding stuff, beyond the obvious, may also be a challenge. Not wishing to dampen your obvious enthusiasm, just pointing out the pitfalls.
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