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jonathan

Skywatcher 150P - To flock or not, and dew concerns

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I have just ordered a 150P from FLO and pending its arrival I am reading up a bit on them, it seems that some people have noticed an improvement in contrast by flocking the inside of the tube, and also that fitting a dew shield is recommended.

I can acquire a suitable dew shield, no problem there, but I have a question or several regarding flocking.

What would I need to do in order to flock the inside of the tube? Do I need to remove the secondary mirror or anything else, and would I need to just cover the entire tube inside so that no original paintwork is showing? How difficult is it? Should I apply in sections, and if so does it matter how large or what shape the sections are so long as they are edge to edge? How many rolls of the flocking sheet that FLO sell would I need for the 150P? Should I flock the outside too? (I saw a post where someone wrapped what looked like pipe insulating foam around the entire OTA)

Thank you for any advice!

Edited by jonathan

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I flocked my tube with black felt (and lots of glue), this really made a difference from the factory standard matt black paint.

I myself removed everything which left both ends open and easier to access.

But remember you'll have to realign everything and collimate the telescope afterwards.

I understand flocking an area opposite the focuser is the minimum, but others could correct me.

If you are going to flock then you’d just as well do the whole inside of the tube.

You can apply in sections but try to make sure all original paint is covered. I’d also paint or cover any screws (but if you do cover them then they can’t be altered/adjusted later).

To find out the amount of material required then simple maths is needed – you’ll need to measure the diameter of tube and its length. Many websites will calculate the area of a tube.

As for flocking the outside, it was more likely a kind of dew shield to keep that pesky wetness away for longer.

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Heres a before and after for my 150p

Remove everything from inside if you want to do the whole item, or just flock on the opposite side of the focuser tube if not.

You will have to do it in 2 sections to do the whole tube.

I used the DC Fix self adhesive velour available from Wilko / FLO

You don't need to flock the outside, just use a cut down camping mat as a dew shield

post-13264-0-46005800-1355229089_thumb.j

post-13264-0-05451800-1355229095_thumb.j

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Although its more aesthetically pleasing to flock the whole tube, 6-8" inches above the primary and directly opposite the focuser are where its most beneficial. A dew/light shield will be of greater benefit. If stray light is prevented entering the ota in the first place, it can't reduce contrast.

Edited by Damo636

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Would I need any additional tools other than a Cheshire Collimator to re-align everything? What is involved in removing / re-fitting the primary mirror? If it's just cross-headed screws, I'm fine with that.

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what Damo said. that said, I have always flocked every newt I have owned since becoming aware of the existence of flocking. I believe it makes a difference for a small cost. if doing so, you do need to strip the whole scope no matter what areas you are flocking - flocking stick to mirrors would not be any fun.

the insulating of the tube on the outside is to do with eliminating tube currents and apparently works well. might try it sometime.

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If you've collimated before then you'll be fine.

I myself made a note of which spider vain leg went where - simply add some masking tape to each leg and mark, 1,2,3,4, then do the same for the holes on the tube.

REMEMBER to lay the tube flat and securely on a table - you don't want screws etc. falling down the tube onto the mirror.

My primary mirror is secured to a lid at the bottom of the tube which is in turn screwed to the tube. Again I labelled each hole on the tube to each hole on the lid (no need to remove the mirror from the mirror cell). Very simple to remove and didn't require much adjustment when reassembled.

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flocking stick to mirrors would not be any fun.

I would use the sticky-backed flock sheet as available from FLO, don't want to be messing about with loose flock and glue.

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If you've collimated before then you'll be fine.

Never collimated anything before in my life.

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I haven't flocked either of my Newtonians, but I find a dew shield essential (mine are made from black foam camping mat from Asda). The Skywatcher tubes seem to be a bit shorter than some other makes and this means the secondary is closer to the open front end and quite prone to dewing up. A simple dew shield sorts this out and helps stop stray light bouncing round in the tube as well.

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I would use the sticky-backed flock sheet as available from FLO, don't want to be messing about with loose flock and glue.

Good idea, I used so much glue that I started to get a little high on the stuff - not to mention the mess.

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Flocked my 250 last weekend, you can see the difference between factory paint here. i used the FLO sticky back stuff, i think you'll only need 2 for your 150.

I haven't used the scope since but its dramatically different just looking down it!

post-23356-0-53618600-1355313422_thumb.j

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