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Found 62 results

  1. Hi Guys, I have an old C8-N with drives and a handset with an ST4 port. I'm using an Arduino to do small jobs around my setup like exposure control, electronic focusing, guiding and small GOTOs through the handset (large ones take too long). The first three work nicely, by my GOTO is all over the place and I've just realised that whether I'm looking toward the Eastern horizon or the Western one must mean that I need to invert my Dec movements. Is this the case? Is this the only effect of the meridian flip? The RA axis keeps on chugging (and I don't mean collecting for charity) in the same old direction, but Dec needs be inverted. Is there a proper name for these two modes, like "Western mode" and "Eastern mode", or before and after midnight? What else should I look out for? Thanks Steve.
  2. For sale is a Celestron Nexstar 5se telescope with Go to mount kept in immaculate condition. This mount comes with a 25mm Plossal lens (non celestron). Only thing I haven't done is clean it since it was bought as never felt the need to but new buyer might want to make it all shiny and give it a thorough clean. There is no power cable included with mount as it doesn't come with one but it takes 8 AA sized batteries which are enough to power it on and make it the perfect grab and go scope for planetary and many Deep space objects. Price: £549 Available for collection only from Manchester, England. Open to offers This telescope sells for RRP £800 so grab yourself a bargain!
  3. After collecting my new Celestron Nexstar 6/8SE Goto mount off Parallaxerr last Tuesday, I got a brief chance tonight earlier on to give it a brief first light. So, here is a brief summary of how things went. The scope I used on the mount was my Celestron 4SE Maksutov; Setting up. Compared to my other Goto mount (Skywatcher Stardiscover AZ Goto mount), getting the mount levelled and set up was much easier. Trying to do this with the other Goto mount can take some time, especially when trying to fit the top Goto part to the mount itself in the dark, which requires a torch and some patience to get the securing screws located correctly. On the Celestron mount you can do this very easily, with notches in the top of the mount to allow easy alignment with the securing screws. Alignment. As there were quite a few clouds in the sky, I went for the quickest alignment that the Celestron mount offers; one star alignment. Not expecting much after the initial alignment on Sirius, I was pleasantly surprised. After taking the tour option to look at some double stars, planetary nebula etc, all objects appeared in my 20mm EP fov. I then used the Constellation tour, and looked at objects in Auriga. M36, 37 & 38 fell nicely in the fov also. Looking forward to doing a three star alignment as soon as weather permits, so I will do a more detailed report when possible. From just a brief hour session using just one star alignment if this mount can get most things in view doing just that then it should perform even better when a three star alignment is performed.
  4. Hi, this is probably a daft question, i've searched and can't find an answer. With the Goto scopes (like the Skywatcher 127 Mak AZ Goto), do they automatically zoom correctly as well as point at the object you choose ?
  5. Aided by GoTo, I observed Venus in daylight this afternoon. It is only a few days from inferior conjunction (26th) and appears as a large thin crescent. It's in an unfavorable position for Northern nocturnal observers and appeared almost below the Sun. I could not see Mercury (which should have been accessible). And before you comment, I checked carefully where the 127mm Mak was pointing before putting my eye to the eyepiece.?
  6. At around 14.35 GMT today I observed Venus, Mercury and Jupiter, with my 127mm Mak SLT GoTo. Venus was a large, very thin crescent, trembly in poor seeing. Mercury was easy to see once I got my eye in, and Jupiter was easier to pick out with a red filter. Mercury and Jupiter are now not far apart. (7min RA 3 deg Dec.) The visibility of Mercury seems dependent on atmospheric clarity. On several days recently I looked for it but could not see it.
  7. Skywatcher Skymax 127 Synscan AZ GOTO Barlow Lens (1.25") 6x30 Finderscope 90° Star Diagonal (1.25”)- Repaired SynScan AZ GoTo Computerised Alt-Azimuth HD Go-To Mount with Handset Stainless Steel Tripod with Accessory Tray Extras ------ Skywatcher WiFi Adapter (This is so you can use your mobile phone for control to control the scope instead of the handset) Celestron Powertank with cable & charging plug T Adappter & Ring for Canon 1300D Camera Meade 8- 24 Zoom lens Bahtinov mask x 2, One for telescope and a small one for canon camera lens L Bracket for attaching a camera to the mount rather than piggybacking onto the scope Plastic carry case for lenses masks etc. Diy Solar filter using Baader Solar Film Turn Left at Orion Book and The Sky at Night paperback Patrick Moore This telescope and accessories are only 6 month old and I have only used it 3 times, so it is like brand new except for the star diagonal which has been repaired. Powertank was bought at christmas and has only been charged once The star diagonal got dropped and the silver insert (the bit that you put the eyepiece into) that screws into it became slightly loose in the threads so I repaired it by putting superglue on the threads and screwing it back in. It is held solid now and no glue is visible and all the eyepieces fit perfectly. All instruction manuals and tools still in bag. Non Smoking Household £400 ono reduced Location Bolton, North West England. Collection or I can do local delivery in person. I would prefer this as postage would be expensive also the risk of damage in transit. If needed then I estimate around £15 due to size and amount of items if sent by courier.
  8. Hello, Bought and received my Skywatcher NEQ6 Pro mount yesterday along with a Skywatcher 12v 17ah power supply. This is my first goto mount (had a non computerised EQ5 previously). We've updated the firmware, balanced the scope and tried playing around with the slewing on the hand controller. The mount will only slew in certain directions and not in others dependant on the starting orientation of the telescope. Declination seems to be the biggest culprit. Also is it supposed to sound so loud when it slews/doesn't slew? Any advice would be appreciated, we are out of ideas about how to get it to work or what we could try. Thank you! Simona
  9. I am looking to upgrade to a goto mount for my Omni XLT 120mm refractor. I am wondering if I bought a Skywatcher EQ3-PRO SynScan could I fit the mount head on my existing tubular tripod? It is mainly for visual use and the refractor weighs 5.7 kg. I believe there is not a straightforward goto upgrade for my existing mount. Would that be adequate or would I need an EQ5 goto?
  10. I've just about got used to operating my EQ3-2 by its flexible manual control knobs but I'm increasingly aware of the wobble I introduce each time I adjust them them. So I would seem to be a natural candidate for a set of SW motors. However I don't want to spend £90+ for some 6 volt motors which have a reputation for blowing up hand controls and eating up batteries. I have read the AstroEQ (excellent piece of work by Tom Carpenter!) thread in this DIY section which offers a very attractive pathway towards full control and go-to tracking of the mount. I am therefore particularly interested in avoiding the SW motor drives and making use of some stepper motors with home constructed brackets as a first stage modification. But is there any way I could do this and control the motors in a semi-manual way without needing always to use a laptop running EQMOD etc? In other words, for instance, could a version of AstroEQ be interfaced with a manual control box (especially IR linked) driving stepper motors and offering simple object tracking? I started this as a new topic because I have some difficulty navigating within the AstroEQ 20+ page thread and don't want to distract.
  11. Just a quick report on some observations to test out the Skywatcher Discovery AZ Goto mount I got off Dobbie on SGL a week ago. Although I've tested it briefly before for a few hours on a couple of nights, tonight as it was getting dark looked promising, even with a few high clouds still floating around. From around 8:30pm the sky was nice and clear, and pretty steady too, although there was a small breeze blowing. After first setting the mount up, leveling it, and doing a 2 star align I got down to some testing. For this I used initially a Celestron 4SE which I'd got from Chris on here on Monday just gone. After aligning with both Vega, and then Polaris, I settled on the first Messier that was well placed up in Lyra to view, M57. The mount slewed to it and placed it in approximately in the 7 o'clock position near the edge of the view with a 32mm Celestron plossl EP. It was very easy to pick out still, even though not centred. Using the PAE option on the mount to centre M57 to fine tune the positioning, I then went across to M13. This got close again, but used the PAE again to centre it to fine tune it. As the sky was darkening well, and the seeing was pretty good M13 was a beautiful sight even at the low magnification with the 32mm EP. I then used my 14mm Baader Morpheus EP to get a closer look. After soaking up M13 for a few more minutes, I then slewed across back to M57 to look at that in the 14mm EP. I didn't use any filter at all on M57, and could quite easily see the ring structure pretty well. I then wanted to test the double double not far away in Lyra in the Celestron 4SE, so skewed across to that. Using the magnification with 10mm, 6mm & 5mm EPs with the 4SE I couldn't get a good enough focus with the scope, although this could have been down to the scope still cooling down perhaps. I then decided to try my new Altair Astro Starwave 102mm f11 frac on the stand, which was probably close to the max 5kg weigh on the mount, but was curious as to how it might do none the less. After carefully fixing it in position, I once again zoomed in on epsilon Lyrae. This fared better with the higher mags, but with the breeze blowing on the longer tube of the f11 frac this caused the view in the EP to wobble a little during gusts. Going back to M13 to see if the positioning was still OK, M13 honed into view very nicely. As the sky was looking the best it has been for a few weeks, I then decided to try for M81 & M82 in Ursa Major. These stood out extremely well in the 14mm Morpheus on the Starwave , and could just keep both galaxies within the same field of view with the Morpheus. I then went across to look at M27 in Vulpecula, which once again showed extremely nicely in the 14mm Morpheus EP. During this time a next door neighbour was having a party, as there were quite a few young teens walking around in the street behind my garden, so I decided to start calling it a night before too much alcohol was drunk, and nosey kids started noticing the large scope pointing up at the dark sky, but before I went in I decided to look for the Cats eye nebula in Draco (NGC6543) which I'd looked for before, but never found, so was hoping with the Goto it should be quite easy to find. After keying in to the keypad the NGC number, it slewed off and settled in what seemed like the correct area of Draco according to SkySafari. Looking through the Morpheus 14mm EP I could see straight away the Cats eye glowing away just off centre. Popping in the 10mm EP to make sure it wasn't just my imagination, it became obvious even more. I now know why it's called the cats eye nebula as it really does glow well for just over an 8th magnitude brightness. As the party was cranking up even more outside, I packed away all my gear, but even though I could have stayed out for another few hours at least, I was extremely happy to have notched up a new object to see in the Cats eye nebula. With clear skies, and the darker nights approaching even more, I'm hoping to notch up some more Astro candy for my eyes to feast on. Hoping that tomorrow night if the skies are clear I can get out once again if the skies are clear, with no boom box beating away in the background! The Goto mount is working very well, and seems to able to handle all my scopes, right up to the Starwave, although this does suffer with a little wobble if breezy. All in all a very nice night, if much shorter than I would have liked due to the party going on next door!
  12. Hi all, I bought a Astromaster 130EQ two years ago and bought separately a celestron xcell barlow 2x and a Xcell LX 25mm. I now use my iphone to take photo's with a adapter. However, I have trouble finding and specially tracking objects. Will an Goto system make this much easier? The next question is, should i stay with my astromaster 130 mm newt. telescope and invest in a goto mount like the skywatcher eq5 with synscan or can i better take an Nexstar 5SE? I am open for other suggestions I want to make planetary pictures with my cannon camera (moon / mars / jupiter) if possible deep sky. However there is severe light pollution in my area. Thanks in advance
  13. Hello there, I'm looking for options for a budget GoTo mount for my 127 Mak. I'm still relatively new to Astro photography so I'm not expecting amazing images. I'd hoped to be further along the astronomy road, although due to an imminent wedding and being flat out at work I just haven't had the time. Last night though me and my oldest daughter went onto the roof for a look at the moon and got a couple of nice shots. So the bug has bitten again. Opinions on an Celestron 60 LCM (With the Mak fitted) http://www.365astronomy.com/celestron-60-lcm-computerised-refractor-telescope-p-2304.html Or is something like the Skywatcher AZ much better? http://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/skywatcher-az-goto-mount.html I know for the long term I should be buying EQ5 pro or better, but this ain't happening soon. The 60 LCM I know is cheap as chips, my idea is when I upgrade then the kids will always get use out of it but should I bother at all? Is there any reason why I can't mount the DSLR to the LCM and lastly, long exposure is a no no, or just not ideal? Best regards PS: Been looking at the Skywatcher allview also
  14. Greetings, I'm super happy to have found this forum of night sky enthusiasts and look forward to learning and sharing on this site! I am an amateur stargazer fortunate to live in a rural area with great dark skies. I'm used to using a GoTo Celestron. Unfortunately I'm having a problem with a newly purchased Orion SkyQuest XTg 10. I've only used it a couple of times. Recently, when I turn on the power, the hand controller (a SynScan V4 GoTo, version 04.39.04) states a message "Both axes...no response!" which means the motors won't work. I've unplugged all the cords & replugged to no avail. The power comes from a new Orion Dynamo Pro, 12 V, Lithium Power Supply which was recommended. Does anyone have any ideas what the problem might be? Thank you
  15. Took my Celestron AVX Mount out this afternoon to familiarize my self with it in the daylight. Wasn’t sure if or how it would work, since it’s my first goto Mount. I got it setup per the directions and attached the SkySync GPS. It locked on my location very quickly so I did the Quick Align option just as a test. The polar scope was oriented north, and I used Sky Safari to locate stars I couldn’t see cause it was daytime. My first choice was Sirius and it slewed right around to what should be the general vicinity! I then chose Venus in the West and off it went! I hit home and it went back to the original setup position. I can’t wait to take it out tomorrow night and really put it through it’s paces! This is totally most excellent!
  16. Complete beginner question regarding using this mount. When I have tried to set up and align the mount , the goto targeting is off by many degrees. Here's what I do - can someone tell me what I'm doing wrong!? With the power off: Align the tripod and mount to North and, with the clutches released, set the declination to my latitude (52deg 28' N). and the mount in the weights-down home position. Lock the clutches and fine tune the alignment on Polaris using the mechanical adjustments on the mount. Turn the power on: Set up the date, time and location, elevation etc. in the handset (noting the American Date format and Longitude first (set to W 1deg 48') DST = Yes Select 1 Star align Pick a star, I usually try Procyon or Betelguese depending on the time. The scope slews to vaguely the right direction but actually nowhere near. It can take 2 or 3 minutes of manual slewing to centre the star in the eyepiece. Finishing, of course, with an up and right movement. Finally, press Enter to complete the alignment ==> Alignment Successful says the handset optimistically. Now from the object menu pick another target. Try, say, Polaris which was where I started and ... nowhere near it. It's the same regardless of the selected target. I have tried 2 star alignment and 3 star alignment, a factory reset before starting, but nothing seems to work. Once i'm lined up on a target the mount tracks nicely - it just won't go where I want it to! Not yet at my wits end but - Help! Mark
  17. AlastairW

    Jupiter

    From the album: Solar System

  18. Hello, ive still haven’t made a decision on what telescope to buy yet ( been very hard to decide what to get ) My Max budget is £400 if I know it’s worth the price.I’m looking for something that’s relatively simple and easy to set up. I was thinking about the 200p but I think that maybe a bit awkward for me and was looking to do some sketching so a goto Mount or something similar would help. I’ve found this scope https://www.firstlightoptics.com/az-goto/skywatcher-startravel-102-synscan-az-goto.html I was wondering if anyone has used this scope or knows more information about it than I do. Was wondering how “portable” it is and what the weight is for it. I’m looking to look at most things through the telescope but not setting my expectations too high. My skies are quite good 4/3 bortle scale. And will be storing it in a garage also will be stairs so need something easy for me to carry. And I’ll be going to a field opposite my house for better viewing. Sorry for keep asking what scope to get as you can see I’m not very good at sticking to a scope . Cheers Olly
  19. I bought this at the start of the year with some xmas cash i had, and its been great, but recently ive had back issues from the gym, and my neighbour has installed a load of lights in their garden, meaning i now need something a bit lighter and more portable so i can go elsewhere to observe. It is a used scope obviously but as far as i know its in good condition, all the GoTo system works, ive never messed with any screws for collimation etc as i dont know how to do it lol, the previous owner assured me the mirror has never been cleaned or touched, and its been kept in my garage under a telescope cover, the middle cover, the EP cover, and the elasticated end cover are all with it. The previous owner has fitted wheels to the base which does make it moveable, but i thought that by pushing it up the street it might affect collimation so ive only ever pushed it a few feet and then lifted it out of my garage. Also fitted is a counterweight, I found this really helps. It will also come with a light shroud, pretty sure its the Astrozap one, and the original EP's. As far as im aware it was the previous owner who added the GoTo handset to this scope, im pretty sure it didnt come with it from new, it had a smaller controller with no display which will also come with it, it all works fine ive never had a problem with it, the only small issues ive had were all user error as this is my first scope, wrong date and time etc Being reasonably new to astronomy im not quite sure what to price this at, and it would be collection only im afraid, from St Helens, Merseyside. I still have the original boxes if required but obviously the base is built up so wouldnt go back in the box. Pics to follow soon Looking on eBay i can see two 250 dobs priced at £400+, neither are the flextube or have GoTo Price reduced to £500 as id like a quick sale, ive bought a new scope now and need to the money for a few bits for that before i go away on holiday
  20. Just a quick report on tonight's observation . Got an AZ GOTO mount on Monday and have the 130p mounted on it ... to be honest , I was worried about getting it set up right , but after a look around SGL found the information on coordinates that were needed and it works 100% . 3 new Messier and NGC targets were found tonight , well , 4 if you add NGC7000 , but it was too faint to count as a catch - it looked like a very faint cluster . The big catches tonight were in the Ursa Major region : Bode's Galaxy M81 and the Cigar Galaxy M82 . Both were well defined and bright , even in the 5 inch reflector and I was very happy to see them for the first time . Up to now M57 was my favourite DSO , now it's joint favourite with Bode's Galaxy . NGC7635 Bubble Nebula was also a first and added to the list tonight . Several other targets , e.g. Pinwheel Galaxy , in Ursa Major region were attempted tonight but with no luck - maybe darker Winter skies will give better results with these .
  21. Hi once again... After spending a year with the mount i built i managed to gather some info about go to systems. I am in my final year of mechanical engineering and will be displaying the mount as my project....but will b dding a go to system to it. I will b getting help from the information technology team to programme the mount. What i learnt is that you can control the telescope motion through stellarium using a raspberry pi microprocessor, a bluetooth dongle and potentiometers for motion sensing. I seen this video on youtube and will share tge link...if someone could rell me if this same setup would work on an equitorial mount??? For example...can the alt and az co ordinates be swapd with tge co ordinates of RA abd DEC...??? You can find the video on youtube...by searching Telescope + raspberry pi + stellarium =itelescope
  22. I tried to use the GoTo function on the Nexstar SLT 130 for the first time last night. I got through all the steps to set in date, time, place etc. But When I have to find 3 objects in the night sky, I have to use the direction buttons on the handset, whenever I press one of those 4 buttons, the handset just dies out. The screen becomes green, it says nothing on it, until 1-2 minutes later, it says something about error 16 or 17. Keep in mind that the whole handset works up until the point I have to use it to align. What this means is that my scope does not move up or down, nor right or left, since it just shuts down. What I've tried: - Change batteries (AA's) - Try to use a power supply - Updated the firmware in the handset to the latest version What could be the problem? - Mehtevas
  23. I saw a comment that there were a lot more double stars in the sky than listed in Norton's or in a GOTO scope database. I found my way to the Deep Sky database (http://www.virtualcolony.com/sac/) and a list "Double Stars With a Constallation" (http://www.virtualcolony.com/sac/star_search.html) which gives a list sorted for minimum brightness, magnitude difference and separation. I generated some lists with parameters that would not overtax my 127mm Mak, and was gobsmacked at the result. For Lyra, I got a list of 27 doubles down to mag.10 Armed with the printed list, I set about finding them in the sky. Equipment: 127mm Celestron Mak on Nexstar Goto mount, 8mm Celestron X-Cel eyepiece & 25mm Celestron stock eyepiece. Out of 18 doubles I looked for, I was able to find and resolve about 13 in a little over one hour. Sky conditions: Urban, full moon. None of them were as pretty as the bright and well-known doubles, but it was an eye-opener to discover how many were out there. I would submit that this exercise would have been impossible (or at best very frustrating and time-consuming) without a Goto mounting. All I had to do was key in the RA and Dec, and since I had used Vega as an alignment star I did not even have to swap out the high-power eyepiece between stars. I wonder if it's possible to import these databases into a format suitable for remote control of a Nexstar?
  24. Hi all have picked out a scope and mount I'm interested in buying. The scope is the skywatcher ed80 pro and I will be using it with my canon 5d mark 1 for astrophotography. It's the mount that I'm having trouble deciding on. Have been reading loads on the net but when I find something I think will be ok I search for reviews of it and looks and behold for everyone who says this is a great choice there is someone else who says don't buy this. Anyway I liked the skywatcher heq5 mount so does anyone on here think this would be a good choice also if I bought a goto mount would this also track or would I need a motorized mount. Also does anyone have a smaller or different mouth sergestion as to what mount I should get, obviously it will have to be tracking. Cheers in advance for your reply so. Russell.
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