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Found 8 results

  1. I just setup my CPC 1100 Edge HD scope with the Celestron heavy duty wedge and I want to do AP. The tripod is on a JMI wheeler bar and I put vibration pads under the wheels. The setup is on my deck on top of the main bean as I do not have a good spot on solid ground. The scope is a little shakier than without the wedge but not horrible. So, based on others experience: 1. Will this work for both short and long exposure AP or do I need a eq mount? Or, does that not matter since I can only use it on my deck and not solid ground? 2. By chance, has anyone used this setup with Starsense to align? Thanks in advance for any help/suggestions. Bruce
  2. I started my journey into AP a few months ago having been pointed in the direction of the “no EQ DSO challenge” thread. As I already owned equipment on a par with some of the members of that thread, I soon found that I was getting some good results in un-guided Alt/Az imaging. My current setup consists of a Nikon D3200 DSLR attached to a William Optics Zenithstar 66SD refractor on a Celestron Nexstar SE Alt/Az mount. I’m sure if I’d asked the question at the time “is this gear any good for AP”, then the replies would have been a resounding no. However, thanks to some encouragement from forum members, I decided to have a go. The only thing I added was a Baader coma corrector which is a reasonable match the ZS66SD, in light of the lack of availability of the original matched WO flattener. Alt/az imaging is of course a challenge with field rotation and subsequent altitude limitations being the main factors. This means we are restricted to shorter subs, generally 30s in my case and often have to image at low altitude to the East or West which helps negate field rotation somewhat, but does mean we’re often peering through heavy LP. Despite this, members here are producing some really quite remarkable images. I am very pleased with my latest attempt which is M33 imaged over 3 nights with about 6hrs of data. I actually had around 50° rotation in my image stack, but thanks to a large FOV I could crop it all out on this small target. But, there’s no doubt there’s a limit to this method and I keep making the mistake of looking at images taken with EQ rigs. Having seen an M33 image from an EQ mounted scope, I realised how much more there was to be captured. Reading Joseph Ashleys book titled “Astrophotography on the go” raised an issue I hadn’t previously considered, that being that despite the short subs, Alt/Az images still suffer from field rotation at pixel level which accounts for their softer look. This is where I’ve gone against the good advice. Put simply, there’s no way I can shell out for a decent EQ mount for some time. I considered the EQ3 Pro Synscan as good results can be had with it but really wanted to stick with a Celestron because I like the software, the cheapest option being the AVX (notwithstanding used items). Instead, for just 30% of the cost of the AVX, I have purchased the new Celestron wedge for Nexstar SE/Evolution mounts. It’s not that I have personally been advised against this piece of equipment, but reading older threads, when the Nexstar SE was still in its prime, it’s clear that some people struggled to get the results they wanted due mainly to the unbalanced single fork arm geometry, some did produce good results though it must be said. There is one major difference between those setups and mine though and that’s the scope. Every wedge mounted Nexstar imaging thread I’ve read involves using the supplied C8 OTA with a FL of 2032mm, loaded with autoguiders and other accessories pushing the mount and guiding to its limits, with owners expecting no less than 5min subs. Instead, I will be un-guided with just 4-5lbs of tiny refractor with a FL of only 388mm and DSLR attached, if I can double my signal using 60s subs un-guided and reduce the pixel level field rotation, thus sharpening up my images, I’ll be a happy boy. So, watch this space. It may well turn out to be a complete waste of money in which case feel free to mock my decision, but I’m quietly confident that this may give me my first little taste of EQ imaging, without shelling out the big bucks! Anyone here using a setup remotely similar?
  3. Hi, Folks I am only a few weeks into astronomy and started off with a Celestron 9.25" Evo on the standard AZ mount. I guess with hindsight this wasn't the best place to start and also with hindsight I would have done better to have bought a GEM mount. Anyway, lesson learned and at 71 years old I have to speed up the learning process compared to younger enthusiasts I have 2 issues. 1/ Its a pain dragging the scope out into the garden and setting it up every time I think the fickled weather might be obliging. 2/ I now know that the mount I have is useless for long exposures and a wedge is fiddly to get polar aligned. My question is, though I gather wedges are a PITA to setup etc is if I was to build or buy a pier for the backyard and use my existing mount + a wedge is this a reasonable way to go? Though it's fiddly to set the thing up once set I could leave the mount, wedge, etc covered up and would just need to drop the OTA on when I wanted to use it. Is this reasonable or am I missing something fundamental down near the bottom end of my learning curve Any advice much appreciated and don't feel you have to spare my feelings
  4. Now the dark season has started for us who live in Sweden. Then we must have all our equipment in top condition. I have one mini mount, the Star Adventurer, I'm very satisfaid with it. But you can always get it a little bit better. One small problem I have is that the altitude lock of the wedge slips. Maybe others of you also have this problem? Here I have some photos and my attempt to get it better: http://www.astrofriend.eu/astronomy/projects/project-star-adventurer-modify-wedge/project-star-adventurer-modify-wedge.html I will test if my modifications work in reality next clear sky. /Lars
  5. Following the recent deforking of my Celestron C11 Nexstar GPS, the original fork mount/base, tripod and the Milburn wedge are now for sale Items are i) Milburn Deluxe wedge with keypad holder - 1" aluminium, powder coated black - built like a tank, - currently drilled to accept A Celestron C11 Nexstar GPS C11, but could be drilled for other SCT bases - see http://www.milburnwedge.com/. Its circa 2007 vintage and originally cost ~£500. Weighs ~ 50lbs ii) Celestron Field Tripod as supplied with the Nexstar 11 - 2003 vintage so showing some wear & tear - weighs ~20lb. I'll throw in a set of vibration suppression pads with this iii) Celestron Nexstar 11 Forks & base (no OTA - that's now on my EQ8) - 2003 vintage. it's showing its age - paint is flaking off the metal parts of the forks - complete with hand controller, RS232 programming cable and RS232 PC Control cable. The hand controller & motor controller firmware cannot be upgraded any further - versions are - Hand controller v2.2, motor controller v4.6. I only ever did planetary/lunar and video based DSO imaging - it was capable of ~10 second unguided exposures @f/5 for DSOs. Weighs ~35lbs Please see pics for detailed condition . Happy to provide further details if required All items were housed either in my home built observatory (2003 - 2007) or the replacement Pulsar dome - 2007 - present Prices:- Milburn Wedge - £150 Tripod - £50 Forks & Base - £75 or sensible offers. Payment - cash or paypal. Given the size and weight of these things - prefer 'collection only' or a '1/2 way meet with 100 miles' from the New Forest - as shipping would be extortionate but could be negotiated.
  6. What is needed to complete the Az adjustment on this upside-down view of an AE MegaWedge? I'm guessing that the sideways adjustment isn't feed via the threads on the stub? So perhaps a starwheel as shown on the Alt adjustment, but with a shoulder or washer that runs in the groove in the Az Index bracket? Michael
  7. Hi all, a friend of mine is thinking about selling his 1982 C8 on a motorized wedge mount. He has already found a buyer for it, willing to pay €700 for it... He wonders though, if this particular setup might become a rarity, and so a prized asset...? Or, on the other hand, if it could be worthwile to take the OTA off of the mount, stick a dovetail on it and put it on a nice secondhand HEQ5 or similar... Opins? Thanks!! Gerhard.
  8. A stack of 1500 frames from 3x500 AVIs with EZPlanetary using a QHY5L-II C on a CPC800 on a wedge aligned using Starsense. My son (15) volunteered to stay out and help with focusing, keeping cables tidy, etc. Just because of him, one of the best nights ever - actually, this is the first proper observation night after big surgery (3 level ADSF) in December. Great to not do it alone! As Saturn is so low I was surprised we got this far on a 8" F/10. Processing: PIPP - AutoStacker2 - PS (to sort out colour balance and sharpen things).
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