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  1. Ooooh the plot thickens... So I'm a bit of a tinkerer and managed to pinch the optics on a refractor after giving it an overdue clean, backing off the tension a little made a huge difference! While you are taking things apart to check it would be worth carefully removing the whole primary assembly assuming it's possible and checking that the mirror clips are not over tightened, need to be just tight enough to hold the mirror in place Counter intuitive to most things which is why people get it wrong, I'm really starting to suspect this scope has been taken apart and reassembled at some point
  2. Looking at the pictures I suspect rotating the vanes 180 degrees is going to be the fix If I was a betting man I'd say someone has previously removed the vanes and secondary and reinstalled them the other way round, the two screws seem slightly off to one side but that may just be my eyes... Maybe worth slackening off the screws slightly and see if you can move it all towards the end of the tube? Sometimes with these things there is a little play which may be just enough I really, really need to own one of these one day too, there's definitely something about that over engineered look that I like Stupid question left till last, have you tried collimating and star testing as is? With no TAL2 owners jumping in so far, maybe it is by design...
  3. Have the 40mm Plossl and the aspheric eyepiece set, no complaints for the cost! The 4mm aspheric is a bit too overpowered for the average lower budget scope would be my only feedback but for £29.99 for 3 eyepieces I really can't complain and picked up a cheap screw in 0.5 focal reducer to lower the mag a little, seems to be ok with terrestrial views, clouds have stopped a proper test of that... Definitely an improvement on the usual 10 and 20/25mm eyepieces bundled with the average scope for me anyway
  4. I don't know the specifics of this scope, but some scopes actually require the secondary to be off center so it may not be a problem as such Worth a look at this guide - https://www.astro-baby.com/astrobaby/help/collimation-guide-newtonian-reflector/ If you are still sure that it needs to come further up maybe carefully remove the center bolt and add a washer or two to give you the required extra travel?
  5. If you don't find one, maybe one of these will help? https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=m570.l1313&_nkw=0.965+to+1.25+adapter&_sacat=0 that into the scope, standard prism in the back, then you can use standard eyepieces?
  6. The 5SE is definitely capable, I've a 4SE and whilst it's not exactly hubble when it's on target you can see Saturn's rings etc. First question really is what time are you trying to observe? Jupiter and Saturn are not visible till the early hours currently, will be better in a month or two. There some excellent info here on setup etc. for nexstar scopes - https://nexstarsite.com/ Setup should be something like this (also helpful to have a mobile app like Stellarium, Skeye, SkyMap etc. as you can check what's visible) Assemble equipment and insert 25mm eyepiece (wider field of view, easier for setup (make sure front lenscap is off scope, happens to us all at least once )) Run through alignment procedure (focus on first alignment start should be a point of light), 2 star alignment is generally pretty accurate - see above link for instructions Goto object you want to observe, still with 25mm eyepiece Center scope on object using direction arrows If more magnification needed, switch to mid power 12mm eyepiece, refocus and recenter - enjoy the views If even more magnification needed, switch to 8mm eyepiece, refocus and recenter, however bear in mind that the quality of view is hugely affected by the "seeing" conditions - clarity of the sky, high clouds, winds, altitude of the object can all be factors. The more magnification you use, the more issues are magnified, so the seeing gets worse, any wobble in the scope and mount are magnified also etc. Another point that is often missed is to set you expectations of what you might see, astro photos whilst lovely are not what's generally going to be seen through the eyepiece - http://astronomy.tools/calculators/field_of_view/ will give you a good idea of how and object will look, but bear in mind the quality is a little optimistic Hopefully at least one of the points above helps - read as much as you can of the instructions, forums and online information (we get plenty of cloudy nights), the more prepared you are in advance of how to setup and use your equipment, the more enjoyable your session will be
  7. Ok a couple of things to consider here. Firstly, do your testing with the 25mm and barlow only, the 10mm plus barlow will I suspect be pushing the limits and seeing conditions, cooling of the primary mirror and collimation will all be factors. If using just the 25mm and barlow and you still can't quite get to focus, you could potentially unscrew the barlow lens from the unit and screw it directly to the eyepiece filter thread at the bottom, it won't quite give you the same magnification, but should allow for focus. Just bear in mind that higher magnification highlights and magnifies any issues, so as a start make sure your scope has been outside cooling down with the cap off for a good hour before testing again, for example my 8 inch reflector shows all sorts of weird issues before the primary has cooled enough. Hopefully this helps
  8. a generous offer indeed! ... Although sometimes I look at the prices of used kit and think it's April 1st everyday, but at the opposite end of the spectrum
  9. Thanks for the info, it's a fairly old scope so I suspect that has been misplaced during its ownership, the people I bought it from gave me everything they had with it
  10. Hi all, I've recently got myself this scope and because it has a nice wide focuser I was thinking about a 2 inch eyepiece a little later down the line. But, for some reason there seems to be no ability to actually use a 2 inch eyepiece, the gold / bronze colour piece just unscrews completely and there are no grub screws etc. From doing a bit of digging it looks the same as the basic rack and pinion focuser used on the skywatcher 200mm reflectors (the Helios was the precursor so that would make sense) so I suspect it may be possible to swap the top section? Has anyone done this change and can confirm it works?
  11. It depends how fussy you are tbh lol, sometimes you overshoot a little, if it's on the horizontal you can just wait for the star to drift into the right place. If I'm being fussy with the setup it still takes less than 10 mins, usually less than 5 though and a rough setup is fine for the brighter objects as you can always dial it in with the finder or even replace alignment stars later on in your observing session
  12. Maybe have a look at this video, my gut says the mount is not quite level, I've a similar mount and had similar problems when quickly setting up. The bubble levels built into the mount are not exactly accurate, better to use an external level if you can, from what I've read you seemed to have covered everything else (of course I may be wrong and you may have it properly level already)
  13. It looks almost identically to the Nexstar GT mount I have apart from the silver cover, however skywatcher do / did an almost identical looking mount with the silver covers so maybe it's been swapped out at some point. Nexstar GT would certainly be what my money would be on anyway at this point looking at those pictures and it wouldn't surprise me the patent being in another name other than Celestron, most of the skywatcher and celestron kit seems to come from the same factories and just get badged appropriately...
  14. Has anyone done this with a celestron mount yet? Had a quick scan through the thread and couldn't see anything. I suspect there are many similarities with the wiring etc, but I'd be interested to know if anyone has already done it before blowing anything up lol
  15. Like this? https://www.amazon.co.uk/DRAPER-EXPERT-HEXAGONAL-TITANIUM-NITRIDE/dp/B003BVGAYU/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=1.5mm+1%2F4+inch&qid=1613059622&s=diy&sr=1-5
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