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Found 8 results

  1. Hi SLG gentlefolk, About 4 months ago I got into the process of ordering a custom made refractor - still an ongoing project and I thought I would share the experience with you Why a custom refractor? There is a certain kind of pleasure in getting something custom made for you, be it -I don't know - say cufflinks or a refractor. I certainly did not seriously plan to order one but randomness coalesced into a weird coincidence and that is exactly where I am now. This will be a rather long thread with a little bit posted every day as I am going through a lot of email exchanges (117 emails so far) to gather the pertinent parts and will document the built of a custom built refractor by Moonraker Telescopes UK . In retrospect, I can only say that it is truly my fault. How did I end up meeting Mark? Mark Turner is the man behind Moonraker Telescopes. The only "contact" I had with Moonraker was through Astrobuysell UK classifieds when once I clicked on the advertising banner link for Moonraker, checked the scopes really quick and said to myself "cracking scopes, not for me, let's move on". Moving on a few months down the line and specifically mid-July, I had a spare red Moonlite refractor focuser which I listed for sale on Astrobuysell UK classifieds and Mark needed said red focuser for a refractor built. I called him to discuss the focuser and we ended up chatting refractors, refractors and even more refractors. And that's when I decided I needed a custom refractor and to see how far down the proverbial rabbit hole I would go. Talking to Mark about scopes in general, I realized that I never actually fulfilled this unknown need of mine for something unique, despite trying refractors from 120mm down to 60mm (in 10mm increments), from Achro to ED and APO and never being fully satisfied. In the end, his insights transformed my initial vision to what I am happily sharing here. This is truly a labor of love and the sum total of significant effort to bring about this fine instrument, giving ultimate joy of looking through and also looking at the telescope.
  2. Well, it was going very well, and I genuinely have shifted a huge amount of kit, leaving just my Tak and TAL (well actually two TALs but that's another story!) I do miss my little Taks (60 & 76) though especially for taking abroad so when this little beauty came up, I couldn't resist. It's a Burgess Optical 91mm Triplet Apo. Very compact scope for the aperture, and even better, it splits in half so making it very convenient for air travel. The objective is in near perfect nick, I understand it's a cemented triplet with fpl-53 and Lanthunum glass elements. The weak point is the focuser, but I acquired a nice Moonlite from the FLO clearance which should go on nicely. A FeatherTouch would be much lighter and in keeping but I cannot afford one currently. Perhaps a future upgrade, and I can put the Moonlite onto a 120ED when I eventually re-buy one. First daylight views are promising. Straight out of a warm house, there was some CA present off axis, but on axis it was nice and sharp. After around 30 mins, it appears basically CA free (looking at thin branches and aerials against the background sky), so I'm hopeful the Astro views will be similarly positive. Whilst it's windy today, it looks like there will be some clear patches coming through so I'll have a little chance for first light hopefully.
  3. I kinda "force" my Astrotrac with my 102ED on top so I'm out shopping for something more appropriate... an 80 mm FPL53 is a must for both doublet and triplet. It will be used for astrophoto and visual g'n'g. After tons of reviews and articles I came with a very shortlist. And here comes my indecision, since the tubes are more or less "identical" but labeled by different companies. -triplet represented by Orion ED80T CF Astro-Professional APO 80 Carbon TS 80mm f/6 (not Carbon) Tecnosky Triplet FPL-53 APO 80/480 -doublet (more or less alike) made by TS 80/500mm Altair Lightwave 80mm F6.25 The budget is 1000$ (~800e) not a cent extra Altair Lightwave doublet and AstroProfessional triplet are my favorites, but can't decide which. thank you
  4. How good is this scope for rich/ flat field and reducing FC & CA? Much cheaper than Tele Vue equivalent.
  5. Work in progress for now, just sorted the correct spacing for the flattner & the stars need sorting with the correct data. AZEQ6 mount, AA 80mm EDT @ 480mm fl F6. Atik 314L+ Guided using the DMK""618 with AA 10x60 finder 225 fl F3.75 Ha - 1.5 hours OIII - 45 mins S2 - 45 mins Just need to find a tut on the best process for adding correct star colours now, meant to be better weather Sunday night as well.
  6. I say first light, it's actually second light but I had a better go this time although still fairly brief. The fine focusing was not working when I first got the scope, so I had a play around with that and successfully sorted it, plus made the overall movement better. Having bought a Moonlite for it, I actually think I'll stick with the original focuser, it does the job and is a fair bit lighter and less bulky, so more suitable for travel. When my numbers come up on the lottery I'll fit a FeatherTouch to it, but for now I'm happy. The Burgess is an f6.6, 600mm focal length scope with a cemented triplet objective of fpl-53 and lanthanum glass. It has a removable section in the tube, perfect for binoviewing at native focal length, but also handy for travel as the tube splits apart. The scope actually takes quite a while to reach ambient temperature. During cool down, the star shapes were pretty dodgy, looking a bit like pinched optics, but once cooled it looked fine. When I've finished my Harold Suiter book I'll make a more informed comment about the star test ?. Collimation looked fine though. I was using the TAL alongside for comparison on the Giro-WR mount, with a 7mm BGO in the TAL and 3 to 6 Nagler Zoom in the Burgess to give roughly similar mags at around x140 to x150 but I mainly used the Burgess at 6mm ie x100. There is some flaring around bright stars, perhaps just the objective needing a clean or muck somewhere else in the optical path so I'll check that out. Colour correction is excellent. No false colour on the moon and a nice neutral tone to the views. Side by side with the TAL, the differences are very noticeable, the TAL actually shows its larger aperture by way of a brighter image and slightly, but noticeably higher resolution on the moon and Jupiter, but also has a fair amount of false colour on the limb and on brighter stars. I didn't buy the Burgess as a planetary scope obviously, but it's nice to know that it gives enough detail on Jupiter to be of interest. Even while it was still low, there was detail in the two main belts and a couple of the temperate belts were visible in the polar regions. Interestingly though I didn't notice the GRS in either scope which should just have been visible towards the end of my session but to be fair I didn't spend long on Jupiter. I am more interested in the widefield views, the main reason for getting this scope is to be able to take it south and view some of the wonderful objects in Sagitarius from dark sites. My lowest power eyepiece currently is the very nice 24mm Panoptic, nice and compact for travelling and giving a 2.72 degree fov. With a 31 Nagler it would be 4.24. The scope has a fairly flat field with the Panoptic, giving sharp stars across the fov. The field was definitely flatter than some of the faster ED doublets I've owned and the Pleiades looked lovely, as did the Double Cluster. Despite the bright moon, the DC was showing delightful tiny pin points of light with good colour variation in the red and orange stars. Rigel's tiny secondary showed up clearly, although the flaring around the primary was more than I would have expected. Polaris split nicely. On to M42, and although washed out by the moon, there was plenty of detail in the nebulosity even unfiltered, and the Trapezium was, well it was the Trapezium. Seeing wasn't brilliant but it looked sharp. In summary, I'm very pleased with the scope. It is built like a tank, but is very compact still. With the focuser removed it fits nicely in my new 1510 Pelicase which is airline portable. I'll post a link to my contribution to the Grab and Go thread where there are pictures of the kit. The only negative really is that being a cemented triplet, I can't use it for solar without a front mounted D-ERF. I do have a 75mm one bought for a PST mod though, so perhaps I can source an adaptor to fit it on the dew shield and just accept the lost aperture. More to follow when the moon is out of the way ?
  7. I am looking for an airline-compatible APO. However, small size is not the only factor, I want it to be a great all-rounder, performing well for both visual and photographic deep-sky work and visual planetary. I'd also use the scope for daylight birdwatching/photography. Currently I have an C5 omni XLT, which I feel limited (lack of contrast). I didn't carry around the c5 too much, but provided I pick up a lighter mount (astrotrac...) this bulk and weight should be OK. Currently I have 3 candidates: 2nd hand TMB-92 Signature Series f/5.5 2nd hand TS Photoline 90mm f/6.6 (a bit heavier but cheaper ) Primaluce Airy Black 90T or the equivalent but cheaper Technosky 90 (both should be Shaprstar scopes). Which one would you suggest? As for mobility, the scope + mount head (sky adventurer??) must fit in a smaller hand luggage, the rest is not important, because I usually hire a car at the destination.
  8. Hi all, As the title says, is it possible to make my own triplet apochromatic refractor? I've made my own Newtonian reflector before, and I've heard of people making their achromatic refractor, but what are the difficulties of making a triplet apochromatic refractor? Thanks! Fishie
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