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Found 13 results

  1. Overall I'm loving my new Scopetech Zero - however I can't get past the Alt axis being much tighter than the Az. If I loosen the Az clutch then the mount turns very freely, and I can adjust the clutch to be reassuringly present while still allowing for slo-mo control. All as I expected. The slo-mo controls on both axis seem to be similarly set, if slightly tight, but I also don't have anything to compare this to and doesn't seem to cause any problems. But the Alt axis is altogether stiffer. With the clutch fully disengaged it still takes noticeable force to move. Any guidance on how I can adjust this?
  2. Many of you will recall when I purchased my APM LZOS 180mm triplet a couple of years ago I wanted to mount the scope on an Alt-Az but at 23kg for the barebones OTA and more than 1 metre in length, there was very little choice available that was up to the job. Fortunately APM themselves actually manufacture a seriously heavy duty Alt-Az mount called the AzMaxLoad. At the time a number of SGL members expressed some interest and more recently I have received a couple of PMs asking about it so I have finally got round to committing my thoughts into a review (work seems to have taken over my life over the last year, hence my inactivity on SGL). You can find the review on my astro-site on the link: http://alpha-lyrae.co.uk/2016/02/27/apm-azmaxload-mount-review/ To give a flavour of the size, here is the AzMaxLoad (on the left) next to my very capable Tele Optic Ercole (18kg OTA capacity). Quite a bit bigger isn't it!
  3. Hi, I have a Meade LX85 6" Mak. The OTA weighs about 13lbs without accessories. I'm getting the hang of the GEM mount, but I find it a hassle to get right and miss the ease and speed of the Alt-Az GoTo I had with my previous 5" Mak. I'm primarily a lunar observer and have no real interest as yet in astrophotography. In consequence, I'm looking for a relatively inexpensive GoTo Alt-Az mount (and legs) to carry the Mak. I will be keeping the GEM. Advice much appreciated.
  4. From the album: The-MathMog's Images

    One of my only semi-successful sessions with imaging. This whole thing is still very new to me, and the learning curve seems very steep, which makes it interesting and rewarding though. Celestron Nexstar 130 SLT Baader Barlow (Only the lens was used, which was screwed onto the prime focus adapter. Nikon d5200 2x 30 second subs (not sure how I pulled those off) 6400 iso 1x 8 second sub
  5. Filroden

    NGC1333 v3

    From the album: Ken's images

    After a second clear night I've added more subs to this image taken on my alt-az mount using the Skywatcher Esprit 80 and the ZWO ASI1600MM-cooled. 30s subs at -20C, 300 gain and 50 offset: 72 x L, 10 x R, 10 x G, 10 x B 45s subs at -20C, 300 gain and 0 offset: 90 x L, 7 x R, 10 x G, 10 x B Total L integration of 103.5 mins All calibrated with bias, darks and flats and processed in PixInsight
  6. Hi all! Few days ago i tried imaging a deep sky object for the first time, so i tried m13 as an easy first target, I used took 7 lights, out of witch i selected 3 for stacking, and used 5 darks. DSS only selected 1 frame out of the 3 and stacked that. The result wasn't that good but then again....it's the first time i'm doing this. Settings were iso 6400, 15 second exposure, auto WB. I have also been having this problem, when my telescope slews to a target, it's always to the left of the frame and that was a bummer since i had to crop my picture. Please give me your advice and feedback, Clear skies!
  7. Hi I am looking to purchase a second hand AYO Digital II with integrated encoders as a grabngo alternative to my goto GEM setup.
  8. Hi there, wondering if someone can help me with stiction problems I'm currently experiencing with my new Sabre mount. First light for the mount on Friday night proved most frustrating, almost impossible to accurately frame an object in the field of view. I believe that I've got the setup as balanced as it is ever going to be until I can improve the fluidity of the motions. Pic of setup attached. All up weight for the SCT with dew shield, Nagler 22mm, Baader Steeltrack Focuser, Baader click stop diagonal, laser pointer and finder is about 9.5kg. The counter weight is 3.7kg.
  9. Hi there, have recently acquired an Alt-Az mount: and am contemplating attaching an inclinometer as a means of getting in the ball-park of an object in terms of Altitude. Most decent inclinometers on the market use a magnet for attachment, unfortunately there is a distinct lack of ferrous metal in my kit, the only element apart from screws with magnetic capability is the Vixen counter-weight. Interested to find out how other people might have tackled this situation. Encoders and DSCs not an option at this moment in time, although will look to go down this route sometime in the future however at this point would probably look to swap out the Sabre for something like an AYO Digi II. Kind Regards Paul J.
  10. Hi everyone, I've been looking for a grab and go mount. This will ideally be for both observing at home (when I can't be bothered aligning an EQ Goto) as well as for holidays in the UK (Cornwall mostly), where we'll be driving but boot space will be limited due to other luggage. This means I am not constrained to airline weight limits, but I do need to keep the size down. My ED80/Manfrotto/Redsnapper is a perfect air travel set, but obviously who wouldn't take a bit more aperture than 80mm for visual where possible. I decided that this means on an Alt-Az with no Go-to. Besides, I miss star-hopping. I put serious thought into getting a shorter scope for travelling to go with a smaller mount (e.g. ST102 & AZ3, or ST120 & AZ4), but ideally this new mount would be for use with my existing scopes - ES ED80 (F6, 4.5kg), ES ED127 (F7.5, 8.5kg), C9.25, 11kg (weights include accessories). After several evenings research and consulting Oracle Stu (aka Big Sumerian), I've decided to go a different route from buying a new scope and mount - stick with the existing scopes and buy a more portable mount. In conclusion I've ordered the Ercole Giro mount. This can carry two OTAs side by side, up to 15kgs each (or 18kgs, depending on which website you read)! Alternatively it can mount an OTA of up to 10Kgs without a second scope or counterweight. Miraculously, the mount is less than 4kgs and is not as bulky as an EQ, particularly as it is a fairly flat shape in comparison. This means I can mount the ED80 as a 4 degree finderscope/widefield scope alongside the ED127 (this pair is as much as I can pack for holiday - if I am lucky), or at home I can mount the ED127 alongside the C9.25 which will give me a combination of fields as wide as 2.22 degrees on the ED127 with magnifications as high as x600 (yes I know that's unusable - mostly ;)) on the C9.25. In each case the pair of scopes counterbalance each other removing any need for counterweights. The ED80 or even the ED127 could each be mounted solo without a counterweight. A question for anyone that owns an Ercole: what is the diameter of the base? I am planning on using it on the tripod from my AVX mount (2" steel tubular legs). I do know that the thread size matches - 3/8" on both units. This tripod has a wide base but there is a hole in the middle which is 60mm wide. Will it sit astride this? I know people have mounted the Ercole on a CG5 tripod without issue, but I'm not at all sure that the AVX tripod is identical. Any help appreciated!
  11. beka

    DSLR M31

    Hi All, Having had to move to an apartment where I could not use my CPC 1100, I decided that I have to see what I could do with my NexStar SLT 102 (alt-az achromatic 102mm f6.47 refractor). Setting up on my narrow balcony was challenging and the altitude bearing was so loose that it almost moved from the weight of the Canon 700D. I could not see M31 in the estimated 3.5 magnitude sky so I did a two star alignment and used the live-view to focus on a bright star. I then took a 15 second exposure after slewing to M31 which allowed me to see that I had it in the field of view. After a few more 15 second exposures and playing with the motion controls I managed to get it centered. The resulting picture is from 39 subs of 30 seconds at ISO 1600, 9 flats. The images were stacked and stretched with Siril and then I played with the curves on Gimp, cropped and scaled. Not too unhappy.
  12. This is a thread for those whose subs rarely if ever exceed 2 minutes long, often shorter, with relatively low total exposure time to discuss tips and techniques for image processing. Whether your an Alt-Az imager battling field rotation, you have issues with polar alignment or you have a relatively small, unguided mount you will often be faced with the challenge of getting the most out of relatively sparse data. The No-EQ Challenge thread has shown that even twenty minutes of sub-minute exposures can give good results. I think some of the things we could discuss are: We can't get rid of noise, but how can we keep its effects under control What are the best tools for short exposure images and what settings are best? Different types of software and their pros and cons What percentage of subs should we stack? (e.g. can we use a greater proportion of subs to reduce noise while letting sigma delta keep our stars round?) Ways of boosting faint background detail What sort of standard should we be aiming for And anything else
  13. Hi I am looking to purchase a second hand Altair Astro Sabre II With Vixen clamps as a grabngo alternative to my goto GEM setup. In the end decided to buy new direct from Altair Astro.
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