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About spaceboy

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  1. Looking down on a pair of Salt and pepper pots was my thinking behind the nickname. You often get one or two holes in the salt shaker (in this case the 2 brighter, orange (which itself could be the salt) and blue stars to the edge) and several in a pepper pot, being the main body of the cluster.
  2. So would this be correct? The amount of times I've observed this cluster and I've never made the connection. ? A good excuse to observe it again me thinks.
  3. Refractors have an allure about them no doubt but an achro 102 / 120 will sadly fall short against a 127MAK. Cool down times, focal lengths, FOV etc aside, you'd need ED glass to better the MAK and even then the difference on any specific target would only really become obvious in side by side comparisons. Differences I may add that come at a substantial addition in price. Rather than risking cluttering up a for sale thread it may pay to ask opinions on the beginner section before you commit to a refractor already having a MAK rhw1967
  4. LP has slowly killed the hobby for me over the past couple years. It was never great living so close to a large town centre but it was the installation of LED lights towering another 7' above where the original sodium lights once pinnacled that brought the largest impact. It took several attempts to get shades installed but the problem is they are so high there's no escaping night vision blindness. For this reason my kit over the past year has been slowly disappearing so I can relate to your search for an ideal scope to keep your hand in the hobby. For me it has always been my ST120 AZ4 combo. I know achro aren't for everyone but I find I only get distracted by CA when I choose to look for it. Yes it does impact on planetary views but I just use filters to help with the contrast.
  5. Good point and a again another consideration for the survival of the human race. If we were ever to get to another planet in the hope of colonization we have to get on with each other and control our cravings first. This seems to be something we seem unable to do even on the habitable planet we have now so it's as if we as a species is destined to become extinct no matter what technology we are able to adapt for exploration of the cosmos. Things would be in limited supply to begin with and we all know how hunger in particular can turn any saint in to a sinner.
  6. I'm not sure how accurate this is but I was watching this YouTube vid and it really got me thinking just how far we are from ever sustaining human life. We do after all need at least a star to support life and with our closest star being such a mind blowing distance away what real chance do we have of continuing the survival of the species?! I mean we need a goldilocks planet that just happens to have a habitable surface along with copious amounts of H2O, orbiting a sun like star of which is still in it's "youth". And when I say youth I mean it's still in nappies as the journey time to such a star system could be in the thousands to millions of years even with anything near speed of light capabilities. I suppose if we could at least get human DNA to a distant deemed habitable planet in the hope that future technology could some how gestate it in to some representation of what we know as human. My guess is what ever the case there would be a necessity for some sort of self supporting Adam and Eve AI android to get the ball rolling. Whether we could ever create each component to make the journey I have no idea. Harsh space conditions and natural decay being a major drawback in travelling such vast distances over many light years. But then there would also be a need to carry along with it other forms of life including plant and insect etc. I'd also think it would take many millions of years for life to evolve to live on a new planet. Just because it is habitable doesn't necessarily mean it would sustain life and each species would have to adapt to it's new environment which in itself could also be evolving. When you look at all involved I think it is safe to say that anything beyond gaining a few extra years moving to Mars / Titan there is little chance we can sustain the human race indefinitely which kind of begs the question why are we looking for habitable planets ?? I mean unless we are some how able to encode the building blocks of life in to light photons which we can somehow control either side of integration, we have absolutely no chance of getting anywhere in space, in time or in one piece anyway. And before anyone says it is to find possible intelligent life to help us in our quest for intelligence or immortality as a species I would argue that we ourselves have shown no desire or reason to bring back Neanderthals. I know there is so much that cannot be answered here so it is more intended for light chatter on what the future could hold for the human race and what difficulties are involved. It does to me seem that the universe first makes it difficult for life to exist and then even more difficult for it to be sustained indefinitely. Which when you think the universe doesn't for all intents purposes "exist" with out some form of consciousness to acknowledge it, so what is it's point in it's being anyway??? This is obviously assuming that consciousness itself only exists in living creatures. Consciousness or acknowledgement of being could of course be a separate entity to that of the physical world and that the body for us at least is merely a vessel of interaction?
  7. If it is the standard EQ3,5,HEQ5, 6 with drives then yes that is correct. There were HEQ5 & 6 with syntrek handsets (often white unless orion branded which were black) that had stepper motors and a basic drive function which all you needed to do was purchase a synscan controller to upgrade them to goto. You can upgrade to stepper motors in an old black EQ6 but the synscan kits cost around £300+. Depending on the market it can sometimes better to just buy a used EQ6 Pro. The advantage of stepper motors are only really seen in slew speeds and long exposure imaging. Manual mounts don't really need quick slew speeds as you can disengage the clutches anyway and then fine tune with the motors. As for imaging you can still get some exposure out of manual motors just not to the length you can with stepper motors.
  8. If your saying the scope itself is OK then I wouldn't loose any sleep over it and first chance you get do a star test just to make sure all is good. If all your concern for is the included eyepiece then they are a POS to begin with and really only intended to get you up and running until you can afford better quality eyepieces.
  9. Truly superb collection of scopes Matt There is something about refractors that I love and the view I feel are by far the best offered by any scope design, ALTHOUGH I have to say the pics posted disappoint me somewhat. The 180 looks right on the edge of manageable and certainly demands a mount of substantial load capacity. Then you see the 254 and it game over unless your in the prime of your life. It's just a shame that the one scope design that offers the jewel in the crown for night sky views goes from a practical grab and go Evostar ED120 or TMB 115 to your back ain't got a prayer in only an additional 130mm aperture. By the time you get to a 16" dob it could be considered quite the handful but a 12" can be managed by most with a little effort. Eyepiece position remains comfortable and in the case of dobs no concerns for expensive mounts to become the make or break. Sorry if this is going a little off topic. It's just I like me fraks and it's a shame that I can never own one what would in a practical sense equal the resolution / light grasp on my 8" newt. I do agree that a good quality refractor can out perform a larger newt in the quality of view even if it is a slightly less bright in comparison.
  10. ? WTH !!! Am I correct in assuming this is an introductory price Ste?? If so do you know how long this will last?? If it is the set price how long can the 120ED remain at £1100 I wonder? I bet the 120ED used prices are no doubt going to suffer if all the reviews are correct about how good the 150ED is.
  11. @John are you going to SGL star party? I can't really do the whole camping thing due to conflicting term holidays but always enjoy popping along for the day. I'd love to see and maybe look through the ED150 if FLO still have it on loan. A bargain no doubt but still a lot of saving for me to gamble on a scope I have only seen on a web page.
  12. Can you loosen off the objective and give it the old gentle tap all the way around to re-seat everything? Hypothetically talking of course as this is a loaner.
  13. [removed word]!!! I was going to put a second dibs on this but figured it was good as sold. Will have to settle for THIRD DIBS ANT
  14. I know on this occasion the courier should get 40 lashes but it's a shame they don't follow Bresser's thinking with their collimateable cells on refractors. Admittedly I'm not 100% sure their new 152 ED has a collimateable cell but I'm positive they do on the 127 ED. Thinking about it I am sure the APM 152ED has a collimateable cell. I guess cost has a lot to do with it and SW wanted to offer a 6"ED to us poor folk but personally when it comes to collimation in refractors I'd rather save that bit longer and pay that bit more and know I can correct for these little alignment issues that inevitably happen over time rather than forking out for a pro to do it or even worse just settling for a slight slip in performance.
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