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Found 58 results

  1. Newbie , bought a skywatcher Capricorn ( around £100) but still unopened as I have some unexpected money and wonder what to do . options I see are ; Use the Capricorn and get to know the sky and how to align the eq mount. Move on if I get the bug , maybe get a couple of better eyepieces. Return for refund and choose one of; Use my approx £350 budget to get a 90+ aperture scope . Blow the budget on an entry level GOTO scope , don’t bother learning stuff but just observe. What would you do ? To be honest I think the learning thing is part of the fun but GOTO scopes seem to be the ‘in’ thong
  2. Hi Everyone. Hoping you can guide me in the right direction or give some advice. I was given a Celestron Astromaster 70AZ telescope as a gift and have so far managed to locate and view Jupiter with an Android app. I subsequently came across a youtube clip were the guy demonstrated on how to add a DSLR / mobile phone adapter to his telescope as a way to converting his budget telescope to a push / go-to by clipping his mobile phone on top of his telescope and using the star finder app, be able to locate his target and then using his finder scope. Please note that I am not trying to Astrophotography (yet). However, I am unable to find any mounting clips / mobile phone adapters I can buy to add onto my telescope. Any suggestions or ideas how I can make this work? Below is what I mean on how I want to attach my mobile phone on top of my telescope. Your help will be appreciated! AC South Africa
  3. Hi, do you think it's a good idea to swap my EQ3-2 GoTo Alu for iEXOS-100? Will there be some kind of improvement? Thanks!
  4. Hi, As my GoTo is successfully finished (some cosmetic issues remain) I shoud focus my attention on planets' positions. I have proper source of information: fantastic book "Astronomical Algorithms" by Jean Meeus, thus I will sort the planets soon. But planets are not a challenge for me at this moment, they are just something obvious to do in my list. I have another idea and ambitious plan for next project within the year: locating and tracking the ISS to be able to make a video of its fly, not only transition. Similarly to other objects, I need some equations. I'm pretty sure they are available somewhere, because plenty websites or apps offer showing current position of the ISS. I will use this topic for sharing a progress ot the project.
  5. I am just in the process of buying my first telescope. There’s so much information it’s making it very difficult what to choose! I have decided to buy a GoTo telescope but I can’t find any information which answers my query. Basically, can you use a GoTo telescope without using the computer part and use it as you would manual one? Any advice would be gratefully received!
  6. Hi all. I'm buying a revelation 16-inch f/4.5 m-crf truss dobsonian and wanted to know can you/ has anyone fitted a go to drive on this scope? ArgoNavis or ServoCat or the like? Thanks!
  7. 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
  8. 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!
  9. Hey, I've been looking for a mount for my 8 inch skywatcher reflector for a while now and can't decide what mount to buy. The requirements i am looking for are the following: Goto system or synscan 10+ kg weight capacity Tripod My budget is around £500. I was wondering if anyone could suggest some good mounts or point me into the right direction. My goal is to get better at astrophotography, my previous mount was a dobson mount ( which came with the scope ) but does not have any features to track objects which doesn't help when doing astrophotography. Tnanks
  10. 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
  11. I recently acquired a used CPC800 SCT. I thought a 'First Light' report might be of interest. First impressions: the tripod is a heavy duty affair with thick legs, a folding lower spreader and a big cast alloy eyepiece tray/steady. The OTA/fork assembly (not separable) is very heavy (21Kg/44lbs) but has a couple of grab handles. You need to be fit to handle this. ? (I was seriously tempted not to go ahead with the purchase after trying the weight.) With the legs retracted it is just possible to pass the tripod through a standard doorway, but it is just as easy to pull up the lower spreader and carry it folded. It is much heavier than a C8SE tripod but more comparable with a EQ5 tripod in weight. Once in position, I checked the level with the handy built-in bubble level and left it. I forgot to screw up the eyepiece tray/upper spreader but I don't think this made any difference. Scope stored on a table with faceplate down and rear handle uppermost. Took the weight with my left arm, elbow fully bent, forearm vertical. Got it on the tripod which took the weight till I got the base to drop over the centre pin, spun it till something clicked into place and then did up the three thumbscrews. I would not try this with an equatorial wedge unless I had a helper. Celestron also sell a CPC 9.25 and CPC1100 - if I had one of those I'd need a sheerlegs or a brawny assistant.? Fitted the visual back (same as C8 SE), prism diagonal (same as C8 SE), straight-thru 50mm finder, handset (Nexstar+) and handset bracket which holds it facing rearwards (a handy feature not implemented on the C8 SE). Fitted a 25mm X-Cel LX that came as an extra. Connected my new lithium powertank and its DC cable, and powered up. It comes ready (CPC Ready) very quickly. Selected 2-star auto align - it whizzed past a time display showing the time ahead of my watch by 1 hour - more on this later. Aimed at Arcturus and afjusted the finder aim. Selected Capella - it nearly got there and then blackout! The cable had snagged and pulled on the plug. I ran the cable through the side handle on the fork and tried again. (It appears that the CPC's supplied cable has a locking ring and the other end has a cigarette lighter style plug.) Capella ... Arcturus .. aligned. Told it to find Mizar (named star menu). It did. Also found M48, the Ghost of Jupiter planetary, Gamma Leo (split ), 54 leo, 88 Leo, 90Leo. The scope appears to be collimated and resolution OK. GoTo is just accurate enough to drop doubles into the bottom of 9mm X-Cel Lx field. Even at 200x and a gusty night the view is rock steady. A pier mount could hardly be stiffer than this! And no obvious backlash in use (unlike C8 SE). Fiddled with the menu, found the GPS is obviously working, and the time set for daylight saving. Corrected it to standard time. GoTo still works. Teardown: tube horizontal, power off, tube cap on, diagonal off, handset and bracket off, left visual back on and capped it, loosened clutch to point tube straight down. Got OTA/fork assembly off and back indoors on table, twirled it into position. Folded up tripod and carried it indoors. I would not try carrying the tripod and scope together. Verdict: Very solid mount should be good for planetary imaging. Some nice features not on C8 SE, otherwise same optical performance. Alarming weight.
  12. Hello all, I have been researching for the past two months what equipment I will need to buy to photograph the upcoming solar eclipse, I have everything under control except the goto mount. Because I am new to this, forgive me if I have made any false assumptions or have any misunderstandings. So after going back and forth with my short-term goals, long-term goals, and budget, I have decided I want an equatorial mount since I have read that alt-az mounts are not well-suited for 30~60 second exposures, due to image rotation. Although the price is a little higher, I figure it is worth it since I want to be able to use the mount for non-eclipse photography in the future, like star clusters, planets, the moon, etc. . So I have my eyes squarely set on the EXOS-2GT, for its capabilities and its price point -- I really can't go higher than this price at this time. But I have struggled to answer some basic questions about this mount that I'm hoping you all may be able to tell me: Can the mount be aligned during the day? Can I use the sun for alignment? Other clever ways to align during the day that don't involve aligning before sunrise? Is the tripod interchangeble? Is there any reason why I may not want to use a shorter tripod than the one supplied with the mount? (this is purely for travel convinience, and reuse with other equipment) Is there any other eq tracking mount within this price range that you think is better for my needs? Is there any reason you would not recommend this mount for my needs? And lastly, can it be controlled from a laptop? (this is not for the eclipse, but in general, if I can re-use the mount to do precisely panned video, or panning time lapse video, it would be a big plus) (I'm assuming this mount does not have a shutter release port, is that correct?) (on this note, I am aware of cheaper alt-az mounts that do have this capability, but as mentioned above, i would rather go with an eq) Thank you so much, and do clue me in on anything else you think I should know.
  13. The struggles of a beginner learning how to use the equipment. :-) Pointed mount North and Levelled EQ6 pro mount 8:30 pm Attached wireless release, 2" nose and UHC filter to Nikon DSLR Attached scope and camera, balanced scope for camera use Collimated the telescope -took 40 minutes of messing around Waited until dark. Took the dogs for a walk around the field to pass the time Polar aligned using the mobile app and sighting against Ursa major. Rebalanced DEC for eyepiece rather than camera 3 star alignment. 1st star was way off and took ages to get it in the eyepiece Restarted 3 star alignment. - Selected a star behind a house. Restarted 3 star alignment -complete. Checked collimation using a bright star - perfect (should bloody be after 40 minutes!) Tried to fine adjust polar alignment using a method discovered online (not drift- I don't think I have the patience.) Didn't work. Restarted 3 star alignment then used the polar alignment on SynScan Took a look at Jupiter was great to look at but not what I set out to do, I want DS images... Attached camera Used live view (LV) to try to focus stars Pointed the scope at M3 and took a 2 minute exposure Tried again with a 4 minute exposure SD card failed. Lost some family pics, grrr Now I have to explain to my partner that it wasn't because of Astronomy, these things just happen. Replaced SD card Took some cautious 1 minute exposures of M90 expecting the camera to explode Pictures were faint so moved to 4 minute with a little more confidence telling myself SD card failures can just happen. Noticed star trails Located a bright star Decided to give PEC training a try. Couldn't do it with an eyepiece. Tried with the camera in LV but noticed some gradual movement in the DEC axis. Hoped PEC training would sort this. Moved onto the Spiral Galaxy Took some 2 minute exposures of the whirlpool galaxy. Wireless timer worked flawlessly. Still a little faint so up'd the ISO and took some more. More detail but more noise. Took some darks with the same settings. Packed away while the camera did its thing. Viewed the pics briefly on laptop. There was star trails (DEC axis again and blurring) Went to bed 1:30 am Summary: So what have I learned? Well DEC error was probably due to the balance of the scope being off. I never did re-balance for the camera. I've also learnt today that I should bias the balance slightly East so the gears engage better. PEC training is a waste of time without an illuminated reticule which I don't have the desire to buy. I'd rather save for a guide scope and guide camera. I've learned I can refine the polar alignment after the 3 start alignment process. I've also read on forums that perhaps I should manually move the scope to the first alignment start then continue with the usual process. I've also seen that two star may be the way forward for EQ6. So perhaps next time I'll start with a 2 star, polar align using the SynScan handset then back to 3 star with the first manual adjustment. I should also purchase a few SD cards that are dedicated for Astrophotography and upload them ASAP after the session. The Astronomik UHC Deep Sky Filter worked wonders with the images for where I live. I can now take longer exposures. Assuming I sort out DEC errors and invest in guiding rig.
  14. Hello. I was hoping someone might be able to help me??? This is my first post, so first off I just want to say a big "hello" to everyone here at Stargazers Lounge. My equipment is: Skywatcher ED 80 + FF/HEQ5/V2.04 Skyscan handcontroller/Tracer 12v battery/Canon 6D, I am not guiding or using a PC. My issue is......I can't get the GOTO function to work perfectly. My HEQ5 GOTO keeps on missing its target everywhere when I do a 2 star alignment. The target is just outside the field of view using a ED80 and 28mm eyepiece. When I do a 1 star alignment I seem to get much better GOTO results but start missing targets when I move further away from the star 1 used for alignment. I have done all the basics...I have callibrated the polar scope, levelled mount, entered correct info into the controller (date in US/Co-ordinates in hrs+mins) Polar aligned ok, tightened Dec and RA bolts and made sure HEQ5 is in home position before turning on the power, tried to centre the star when aligning etc. A few things I noticed over 3 nights of using my HEQ5 were: Night 1) Tried a few two star alignments with Alkaid and Betelgeuse but i found that the Goto was off on Jupiter and the moon in the East. I could see the light of the moon through the telescope but had to the center using the handset. Same issue with Jupiter.Tried again from scratch 3 times but always the same result. I used the same alignment stars because I'm not so sure on others yet apart from the obvious and some of those were not on the list the skyscan controller gave me.I gave up on the goto in the end and just looked at Jupiter and the moon for a few hours....they were superb, I was amazed at how far I could push Jupiter with the ED80, almost better than my 200p in ways.I can see why people like refractors! Night 2)Set the mount up. Tried the same 2 stars and got the same result.However this time I tried some targets to the West in Auriga without thinking about it and the Goto seemed more accurate????Is this because I aligned with Alcaid near the North and Betelgeuse in the West, therefore it tracks better in the Western side of the Meridian? Night 3) I then tried out a 1 star alignment just to see what the difference would be (I used Alkaid) I can get M51 and M101 bang in the centre of my Canon 6D but M81/82 start to appear to the top left corner and not in the centre....the tracking seems to be going off the further I move away from my alignment star.I then chose M44 in Cancer because it is to the South and it was off in the frame to the left, like the 2 star alignment was giving me......I assumed though that maybe this is the case with one star alignment, it can cope in an area near the alignment star but as you move further away it gets worse???? Using the 1 star alignment gave me a chance to do a bit of imaging for the first time so I stuck with that. I have not tried 3 star alignment yet and I know that this helps compensate for cone error...I will be trying this next anyway to see what I get. Is there a way to get the Goto to work on targets all over the Sky? Do most imagers just choose a star near the area of sky they want to image in and use the 1 star alignment?? For visual I thought the 2 star alignment should work but to be honest the 1 star was better!! I would really like to get the GOTO to work on any target i choose wherever it is in the sky. Anyway I've just started so I have a lot to try and experiment with but I thought I would try some suggestions here because I might be missing something obvious? Any help would be fantastic Thank you and clear skies to all. PS.I have included 3 pics to show how the first 2 targets are central but the third is starting to go amiss.They are also my first ever Images so thought I would share. If anyone knows what those black marks are on my images any advice to get rid of them would be really usefull...looks like something on the sensor...or from deep outer space..lol.
  15. I am wondering if I have knackered the drive mechanism on my Sky-Watcher Skyliner 400p Flextube Synscan Go-To Dobsonian ? WHAT I DID: I did a quick collimation in daylight, and needing to swing the tube from vertical to horizontal I stupidly slackened the fixing hand nut on the wrong side, NOT slackening the drive release wheel on the correct side. Then I forcibly swung the scope from vertical to horizontal with the drive mechanism still engaged. WHAT HAPPENS NOW: The scope is fine optically of course, and both drive mechanisms (the 'compass' movement, and the vertical) appear to work fine, they sound normal and the scope moves at the normal speeds as far as I can tell. BUT, I cannot get it to align, for the GOTO system. When I do a two star alignment – I line up the first star, no problem. When the scope moves to suggested second star, it gets very close on the horizontal, but not close on the vertical – the axis which I forced the mechanism on. Previously, once aligned on the first star, the scope would move automatically to within a degree or so of the second, and only need minor readjustment. Of course I can move to align with the second star using the drives, but nevertheless, the alignment remains way off, 10 – 20 degrees off, which big errors particularly in the vertical axis, when I move to any other objects. I suspect I have damaged the drive / encoders. Does anyone know if a moderately practical amateur can repair these – or indeed replace them? Meantime I am learning how to find objects without the Go-To, which I find difficult – but rewarding. Thanks in anticipation for any advice. Jon
  16. Hello I need your expert advise and opinions please. I currently have a Sky-watcher 114 telescope which has served me well for the few years I've had it, but I've always had trouble with balancing, aligning and generally finding the more difficult things in the night sky. So I feel now is the time to upgrade to a goto telescope as I am keen to take up astrophotography and image and share what I'm seeing. My theory is that if I have a computerised / goto telescope and mount, I would spend less time setting up and more time enjoying the night sky. I have between £400 - £650 to spend I've done some research and I have come up with a few options but also welcome any suggestions you all come up with which I haven't thought of already. Celestron Nexstar 5 SE Computerised Telescope https://www.amazon.co.uk/Celestron-NexStar-SE-Computerised-Telescope/dp/B000GUHOYE/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1479455548&sr=8-5&keywords=celestron+nexstar Sky-Watcher Skymax-127 SynScan Goto Telescope https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sky-Watcher-Skymax-127-SynScan-AZ-Telescope/product-reviews/B00A784RBS Celestron Nexstar 127 SLT MaK Telescope https://www.amazon.co.uk/Celestron-NexStar-127-Mak-Telescope/dp/B0038LX8XE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1479455805&sr=8-1&keywords=celestron+nexstar+127 Meade ETX 90 Observer https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01E53GQ78/ref=pd_sbs_421_40?ie=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=4PMZKN1FJBKW0Y2KBV8S Ive chosen various Maksutov-Cassegrain Style scopes as I'm a bit of a short-Bottom and found that when I tried out this type of telescope, it was easier to use rather than what I currently have. I await your wisdom
  17. Well, the day has finally arrived. My new dream scope has landed at my door. After many weeks of contemplation of what i wanted to upgrade to i have finally settled on the Orion 12" goto dob. Love the look of this scope along with the quality build finish. I was originally going to go for the GSO Revelation 12" and build my own EQ mount but i have always had a soft spot for Orion and just thought, sod it So, here it is boxed up with the Tracer battery i got along with the Orion mains adapter. Think i may need to buy a 12v jack plug for the battery however as there isnt one in the box, only a strange female tube like connector. Only thing left on back order is the Orion light shroud due any time soon. Big shout out to Kerin at Telescope House for all his help and amazing deal he has done me. Thanks pal. So, the big unbox is due tomorrow, plenty more pics to follow for this thread.
  18. Hi, I have Bresser EXOS II EQ5 mount with dual motor drive. Want to upgrade to GOTO + guiding support. Read many negative reviews about GOTO Upgrade kit given by Bresser. So wanted to know are there really such issues like incorrect GOTO, loud noise while slewing etc. If yes, then as an alternative can we use Sky-watcher Synscan GOTO upgrade kit with Bresser EXOS II EQ5 mount? Will it work? Thanks! - Abhijit Juvekar
  19. I have recently acquired an AZ-EQ6 mount but am struggling to get decent GOTO accuracy so need some help/advice. On the plus side the mount is tracking fantastically - I have taken 4 minute unguided exposures with my DSLR and the stars are nice and round. I am using a refractor which has 1000mm focal length and I'm just using the hand controller with the skywatcher GPS attachment that sets the date and time. i.e. no PC software involved. I have disabled the auxiliary encoders as I don't need them and have heard they can be a source of problems. I polar align using the polarscope which I find plenty good enough to get good tracking accuracy. When I turn the unit on the GPS sets the date and time and I select daylight savings on and I have the unit in the home position so weights down and scope pointing parallel up towards the north pole (I've used the spirit level to set the setting circles so I can get the home position more accurate). I've tried 1, 2 and 3 star alignments but always have the same issue - it succeeds but then when I slew to another star (even a close one) it is a long way off (i.e. nowhere near being in view even in 30mm eyepiece). The oddest thing is that after centering the star and completing the alignment if I slew away to another star and then back to the alignment star it still points way off! In my mind I at least expected that to work - I thought it would just have some offset map between the calculated astronomical coordinates and where you've told it is really pointing so I don't understand at all how this can happen. Late last night for example I did a 1 star align on Vega and then told it to go to Deneb and had to move with the hand controller the end of the scope up a good foot to find it! It's like its completely ignoring the alignment adjustment I have to make each time to find the star so any initial error never gets corrected. Any ideas?
  20. Hi, I have a Sky-Watcher Skyliner 300P FlexTube GOTO which I am enjoying however after a period of no use the base has become very stiff. My fault, as it became wet not realising that the cover I had bought for it was not waterproof. Looking through the threads in here I found one which I followed to try to strip down the base however I have become stuck at the point of trying to remove the motor housing from the base after removing the 4 machine screws. I suspect that it is a combination of corrosion and the base material swelling which is preventing me from removing the motor from the base. When I release the worm gear from the static gear using the release lever the motor turns easily which is what is fuelling my suspicion. Any advice or suggestions would be useful as I've come to a halt in my investigation for the moment. It looks to me like I'm going to need a new base which may be a better bet anyway as the original supplied is heavy and definitely not good in the damp. Dom
  21. I am considering purchasing the https://www.celestron.com/products/nexstar-130slt-computerized-telescope for my son for XMAS. I want the Go To functionality and I have looked into software and know I will want TheStarX software to point to objects in the sky. My question is what do I need to get this to work? How do I connect the telescope to my network so my computer can talk to it?
  22. Hi everyone, Im currently having some issues with my goto mount, Im going through all the correct procedures and choosing 2 star Align for the allignment process, starting with Vega as its the easiest and brightest star for me to see at the moment. When it comes to the second part, the mount aligning itself with the second star ( I have been choosing Alkaid) the mount slews off in the compmetely oppossite direction. I have tried this with a few different stars and always have the same results. Any thoughts please guys maybe im doing something wrong. Thanks for your help!
  23. 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!
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