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Everything posted by NorfolkGazer

  1. My personal favourites are Turn Left at Orion and The Backyard Astronomers Guide. I've just purchase the fourth edition of the latter and it's a cracking resource, starting as already said with naked eye viewing. A decent planisphere is a definite to get your used to what you're seeing above you.
  2. After reading this post I ordered a few bits from them and I am not disappointed. I ordered two heater straps, a controller and a telrad heater, ordered Thursday and delivered Saturday. Haven't used them in anger yet, but they look and feel fantastic quality, very happy.
  3. So I couldn't get the conversion from TS as they didn't have any stock and couldn't give an expected date, so I ordered the Baader clamp and a piece of aluminium to create my own mount bar. The original plan was to tap the aluminium and screw directly into it, by my tap set shredded the bar, so I had to resort to nuts and bolts instead. The plan is to finish it off with hammered black Hammerite type paint to match the rest of the mount and remove glare. Assembled it with the OTA on and it balances perfectly with the existing counterweight, all in all a success I think. Thanks again for everyone's inout and advice, it's much. appreciated.
  4. If you are using iPhone and have the wired headphones, you can use the in-line volume control as a shutter release as well.
  5. I think for me it was age 12, when one of our science teachers announced that he was going to bring his planetarium into school one day for those who were interested and willing to give up a lunch break. I think I was more intrigued at the time at how he was going to get a planetarium into the school hall, but lo and behold this inflatable dome appeared in the hall. I was hooked from that moment, laying back and gazing up at this projected image of the stars and constellations, everything so clear. There was a bit of a gap from there (ok, about 30 years gap) when my wife bought me a Skylux refractor for Christmas and the spark re-emerged. That got me back into stargazing, to the point where I upgraded the scope a few weeks ago for the 130P reflector. Along with a healthy enjoyment of StarTalk Radio and pretty much anything by Carl Sagan (Contact is right at the top of my favourite films, alongside the book), together with Moore, Hawkins and Cox. Oh, and @Zermelo I had that Ladybird book as well, that picture brought back a lot of memories.
  6. Thanks all for the recommendations everyone, I wasn't sure looking at the different options what would fit and work so this is a fabulous help. @Laurieast I saw your post before you deleted so thank you for your recommendations as well.
  7. Is it possible to convert the EQ2 mount for the SW 130P to a dovetail mount. Out of the box, the OTA rings are bolted to the mount, so the OTA has to be removed from the rings rather than leaving the rings in situ. I've looked through the various sites for possible modification accessories but can't see to find anything. Has anyone successfully modified the EQ2 to a dovetail mount at all?
  8. Cheers Stu, I'm sure I will, looking forward to what I'm going to see with it.
  9. So my new scope has been staring at me since it arrived on Wednesday (yes, it is sat in the front room waiting for sky time). I opted for the SkyWatcher Explorer 130P as the upgrade from the Bresser I was using, and I couldn't wait to give it it's first light. Scope Nights was showing a little window of clear skies last night, but I'd been up since 0430 and on shift, so could I really be bothered to get the scope outside and try it out? You better believe I could. This was literally the shortest observing session I have ever done. I literally took the scope outside, not even bothering to wait for it to acclimatise, and pointed it towards Jupiter, which was bright in the sky. The red dot finder was slap bang on target and I'd managed to do a good job of aligning it, as when I looked through the EP, the she was, bright and clear. A little tweak on the focus motor and the belts came into clear focus. I was a kid again, giddy and excited at what I could see. This was my first time using an EQ mount (the 130P having an EQ2 mount), but it quickly became obvious how it worked, so the next job will be to calibrate the RA setting circle on a night when I have more time. I'm in no doubt that I've made a good choice in this scope, and there will be plenty of nights observing ahead, so whilst this was literally a 10 minute session, it was the best 10 minutes of scope time I've had to date!
  10. You were right, after tentatively removing the screws, it was indeed a cover and the collimation screws were under there. Not sure why this wasn't in the manual, but probably more glad that the primary didn't fall out when I took the screws out Cheers for the reply.
  11. This may come across as a daft question, but looking at the base on my new Explorer 130P, I can't see any adjustment screws for the primary mirror. All I can see are three separate screws as per the photo before. Am I missing something? This doesn't match any of the illustrations in the manual that came with the scope.
  12. Scope Nights has Monday night crystal clear here in Norfolk as well, the new scope may get its first light with a bit of luck!
  13. This was ordered mainly in anticipation of ordering the new scope, which will be ordered at the end of the month. (There was a lot of ordered's in there )
  14. After reading this I've just pre-ordered the 4th Edition of the Backyard Astronomers Guide, cheers all.
  15. The D70 doesn’t have a dedicated accessory port just the USB for connecting to a computer/printer. You could try this, it’s supposed to work with the D70. https://www.photo24.co.uk/wireless-multi-exposure-intervalometer-remote-control-for-nikon-d70
  16. Is there much difference between the Sky Watcher StarQuest and Explorer series? Looking at them side by side I can't really see any difference except price.
  17. Cheers for the replies both. I think I'll opt for the 130P then, thanks again.
  18. So I'm looking at upgrading from my Skylux refactor to a Skywatcher reflector at the end of the month. With a budget of around £250-£280 I'm looking at either the SkyWatcher Explorer 130M or 130P. My question is, is it worth sacrificing the RA motor and getting the 130P which I understand will reduce chromatic aberration and give a clearer view. I'm assuming that I can get the RA motor at a later date for the EQ-2 mount, so effectively getting the best of both worlds. Also, would the reduced focal length of the 130P be noticeable relating to the longer focal length of the 130M?
  19. As a bit of a side topic on this one, would anyone know what size I would have to draw the three reticles for the Telrad to be in scale with the deep sky watch printouts. Apologies if this is hijacking the thread a little, but it seemed the best place to post it. Was thinking of drawing them on a clear sheet so I could use it with the atlas to star hop.
  20. I've just downloaded this and started printing it. I like something tangible in front of me to use and think this will be better for me than using an app when at the scope. I think app's have their place, but for me this is better.
  21. So I put the scope out to acclimatise at around 1900, hoping that the clouds would clear. I know that I wouldn't get to see much as the moon is waxing to full and it was so bright that any DSO would be nigh on impossible. That wasn't an issue however as tonight was more about getting used to moving the scope and getting to grips with the Telrad. I'd read a little about star hopping with the Telrad and how you could put the reticle on various of the apps to find DSO's so I wanted to spend a little time just 'getting used' to lining it up and getting comfortable with it. So, having previously aligned the Telrad with the scope a coupe of days ago in daylight, I wanted to see how accurately I had done it and how easy it was to find objects with it. Orion was fairly visible, but the sword was pretty bleached out, not really visible at all, more a faint ghosting of itself, but after putting the reticle of the Telrad in the rough area and turning the power down so it was very feint, I could just see the sword in the inner circle. Using the stock 20mm EP that came with the scope, the sword was smack in the middle of the FOV, and with a little fiddle with the focus, it was soon sharp and visible. To say I was like a kid in a sweetshop would be an understatement. The moon was too bright to make out the Nebula, although if I looked at peripheral rather than straight through the exit pupil, there was a very slight suggestion of it being there. I seriously can't wait for the moon to wax over to new, as I am now more confident in using the scope and Telrad to pick out what I want to see. Swinging round to the west a little and dropping in the 4mm stock EP (way to much mag for the scope, but just about useable) I managed to bring Mars into view, and got the shiver down the spine thinking about Perseverance roaming around up there. So, all in all, not a lot to see through the EP, but a fantastic night of discovery in getting to grips with the scope and finder. The clouds parted every now and then to allow me to play a little and I have to say, for a beginner scope, after tweaking it here and there with the additions recommended by the good folks here at StarGazers Lounge, it is a great introduction to Astronomy. The next investment is the BST EP's, and I will use this scope for a while to get used to finding and viewing, but there will definitely be a new scope purchased before the year is out. Tonight was a good night.
  22. This is the start of my modest collection. Housing the Telrad and my modified liveCam up to now. I'm not putting the 'stock' EP's that came with the scope, rather waiting for when I replace them with the BST SkyGuiders, the first two of which should arrive next week.
  23. I can hear my credit card groaning already Thank you so much to you all for your kind replies. I've only been on this site a couple of weeks and I'm constantly amazed by the time everyone takes to reply, and often in great detail so again, thank you. Apologies for the delay in replying, its been a busy few days at work. Taking on board what you have all said, I'm dropping the ND0.6 idea and definitely going to opt for the polarizing filter instead, especially the twin filter option as you said Heather, as my current set-up uses a diagonal, and I like the sound of rotating the EP to adjust, so thank you for that. Once. have that, I'll start building up others, starting with the nebula options, then coloured filters from there. I'm firmly in the school of 'buy cheap buy twice', so they will be a quality purchase. I'm off to read all the links you posted, thank you again for all the advice.
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