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astro_al

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Everything posted by astro_al

  1. Hope we get a break in the clouds tomorrow!
  2. Much better day today with the binoviewers. The 1.7X GPC and the shorter FL EPs still can require a little patience to merge but I have got used to it. I also realised the the barrel design is different between the two 15mm APMs. One tapered, the other straight. Not sure that is helping. Anyway the binoviewers are staying. Great lunar views tonight.
  3. I still couldn't (initially) merge last night at 80x with the 1.7xGPC, 10mm APMs and the FC-76. No problem merging with the Zeiss binoviewers. I swapped the 1.7x GPC for the 2.6x and the 10mms for 20mm TV plossls to get a similar magnification (the 1.7xGPC is more like 1.4x-1.5x in my experience) and had no problem merging. Switching EPs to the 15mms (105x) and then the 10mms (157x) also presented no problem. Odd that I couldn't merge when viewing a small sunspot earlier in the day as that setup also uses the 2.6x GPC. Adding more magnification before the binoviewer presumably narrows the beam and reduces the effect of any mis-collimation which is maybe why operating this way appears to be common practice (for me also). Weirdly I later switched back to the 1.7x GPC and the 10mms and could also merge this combination. I rotated the eyepieces, swapped left for right, but the image still remained merged. So far: No problems at low magnifications (<50x). No apparent problems at high magnifications using the 2.6x GPC at night. A problem with the 2.6x during the day at over about 80x. Typically a problem with the 1.7x GPC at 80x and above at night. Probably should run this past FLO for their thoughts. Weather permitting I will try for that sunspot at lunchtime to see if I still have problems merging.
  4. Yes @Stu. Giving them another go tonight but there is no reason why they will be any different - just want to be sure. Overall they tick all the right boxes for me and I still want a pair. I was disappointed with the broken end cap and the metal burrs in the adapter. These are not huge issues but should have been easy to spot in a QC check. No way the end cap was damaged to such an extent in transit as the packaging and the case they come in are excellent.
  5. First time in a few years. I originally bought a secondhand pair of WO binoviewers which arrived mis-collimated so I ended up opening them up and adjusting them. After which they were fine. My current binoviewers can be easily adjusted which I did early on and their collimation has remained good since then. I use pairs of 20mm and 25mm Televue plossls and pairs of 10mm and 15mm APM Ultra Flat Fields because of their better eye relief than plossls at those focal lengths. The 15mms get used more than the 10mms. That's the sum total of my eyepiece collection. These days I use a GPC for high magnification observing, typically the 2.6x. I was looking at the small sunspot today in white light. Using the 10mm and 15mm EPs (100x and 150x) I could not merge the image with the MaxBright IIs. I then swapped them for my Zeiss pair keeping everything else the same and there was no issue with merging. The other night when viewing Arcturus I couldn't merge at 80X. Will test again tonight.
  6. Mine arrived last week. Compared to my existing binoviewers I like: The rubberised panels The diopter adjustment The clicklock eyepiece holders The slightly shorter back focus requirement (1-2mm) now allows me to use the FC-76DC with the 1.7x (1.4x) GPC Slightly brighter image (left and right side are more evenly illuminated) I dislike: The telescope side end cap was almost in two pieces The bayonet adapter wasn't clean - grease and metal burrs The colour is off white but not in a good way to my eyes - pinkish white I can't seem to merge the image at 80x or above The first three dislikes are minor but the last is a deal-breaker for me. I will try one more time tonight but it is likely that they will be going back for replacement. If the collimation was better then I would definitely be keeping them. Not having much luck with new kit at the moment.
  7. Thanks Steve. Sounds like yours is operating as expected.
  8. What’s the view like without power? No proms or detail? I would be happy with that! Great news.
  9. Nice setup. Looking forward to hearing how you get on with it.
  10. Monday looks better. Fingers crossed. Got a notification today that my new binoviewers have been dispatched. Unfortunately when they get here the Quark will be on it’s way back On the 35nm topic. Can’t say I noticed any degradation of the view when it replaced the UV/IR cut.
  11. I am using it on a 76mm scope so according to Daystar it should be OK without even an UV IR cut. I do however use it with 35nm Ha filter so I couldn’t really do much more to reduce the heat other than a front mounted ERF.
  12. I did and I got a response from Mark and Alexandra which was appreciated. Both said it was a faulty unit. Sounds like Alexandra had a similar issue but the other way around i.e. not enough heat to bring it on band. Anyway FLO are taking it back and if they agree that it is faulty then will supply a replacement. I purposefully bought from FLO because of their customer service so am confident all will be well. Hopefully get a new one soon. Anyway, I sort of hijacked this thread a bit so sorry @Steve Clay. I am looking forward to hearing about your first light this weekend.
  13. Glad it's not just me then
  14. Thanks Dave, appreciated. I have nothing to compare it with at all as I don't even have any experience with other Ha kit. I have been enjoying the views but I have no idea if they are typical. Wouldn't really be questioning it if the view was blank with no power and improved at -5. I understand that there is variation between units, but my concern is that its behaviour doesn't really seem typical with anything else I have read online. Anyway, I have contacted FLO to see what they say. Thanks all.
  15. Just took the Quark out for 5 minutes to check my sanity. It has been unpowered in the house for 5 hours. I immediately saw spicules on the limb, several proms with a large one at about 1 o'clock, and a bright area on the disk just down from the prom.
  16. Thanks Dave. Now I am confused. I only see that type of view on +5.
  17. What do others see when their Quark is unpowered?
  18. I have been starting the session with no power having brought the Quark out from a cool house. I immediately see proms and spicules on the limb as well as a hint of dark mottling on the disk. Today I easily saw what I think is a filament. All without powering the Quark. Yesterday starting without power I could see plage but not when I powered to -5. I am not an experienced solar observer, so maybe there is something at -5 that I am not picking up on, but at the moment there doesn't seem to be much point in powering my Quark.
  19. Thanks @BGazing. I was out observing this morning for a little while and started with no power. Still better than -5 to my eyes, but I will test more later. I view the Quark dial in the same way as I view focusing a scope i.e. even when I think I am in focus then I still focus through and edge back to be sure. If -5 looks good with the Quark and no power or 0 looks worse then I feel good that I am 'in focus'. I don't have that at the moment.
  20. I have the 2” so I can screw it into the nose of the diagonal and not the Quark. This is inline with Daystar’s diagrams and I guess means the filter rejects the unwanted energy as early as possible.
  21. The closest I have seen to a white light view is when the Quark is +5, so max power. I see nice proms on -5, I also see nice proms and the best surface detail (so far) when the Quark is off. At the moment I am not understanding what powering the Quark gives me.
  22. I am going to have to change my mind on this one. I have been trying to see the large AR off and on today with the Quark. I didn't notice it was there at any point during observations yesterday, it was only when I saw it on GONG that I realised. I started with an hour this morning between 7:30 and 8:30 AM and could just about convince myself it was there, but only because I knew where to look. The Quark was on -5 and ambient temperature was 11 degrees C. I popped out again at lunchtime. Ambient temperature was 23 degrees C, Quark still on -5. Same deal, barely visible. Mid afternoon I grabbed 20 minutes. Ambient temperature was 23 degrees C, Quark still on -5. This time it was much more visible, easily detected. What was the difference? I forgot to plug the Quark into its power source! I observed for a little longer before plugging in the Quark after which the image slowly changed so that the AR was barely visible again. I repeated this later in the day i.e. with the power off first. Ambient temperature was 24 degrees C. I always bring the Quark indoors between sessions even though I leave the scope out so it is coming from a cool location. Same experience, the AR was much easier to see before I powered the Quark. So what does this mean? Do I not bother with power when the ambient temperature is in the 20s and only bother with it in the winter? 11 decrees C this morning isn't that warm. I guess I was expecting that the heat required to get the Quark on band would be higher than ambient UK temperatures so that I could always rely on a specific setting. It feels like today's experience means that I don't have any real control about regulating the temperature. Maybe a question for FLO.
  23. Yes, a couple of weeks ago. Once I have them I will report back on how they compare to my existing binoviewers. It won’t be comparable to Bill’s excellent review though. I am looking for improvements in a few specific areas.
  24. I really enjoy how fine it looks in good seeing. Like troll hair
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