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Mentalmackem

Binocular advice for disabled astronomer

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Hi,

To cut a long story short i became disabled just over a year ago which has reduced my hand functionality. This means i cant always set my telescope up quickly enough to observe.

So for Christmas i've received some money towards some astro binos and a tripod if required. Can anyone point me in the right direction or recommend a pair of binoculars for Astro observing (the more i can view the better!!) without many small fiddly bits?

Thanks in advance

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Sorry to hear about your problem.

What ever bins you get have a look at using a monopod with a pistol grip to support them. This combo can be used sitting down in a confy camping chair and adjusting the pole for height to suit your sitting position, the spike on the mono pod can go into the ground and you can tilt the whole affair back towards you. I bought mine of Amazon UK and it supporft my 15x70 very nicely. Gives me good steady views without having to support the weight.

What size bins were you considering and what budget?

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hi

I to am disabled, have been for the last 6 years. I found i could not move my 6" refractor any more and tried binos and like "Baggywrinkle said i also used a monopod with a ball head, i found that putting a little "Fruit can" the 2/3 inch deep ones into the grass a bit like a hole on a golf course and i put the monopod leg into that and set up my seat. works well and you don't get the monopod leg slipping like you do on just the grass.

I also have my 6" refractor permanently set up in my spare room looking out the window. I know! everyone says that bad but i had no other choice and did see Uranus about 2 weeks ago for the first time in the 40 odd years I've been sky watching. i found keeping the window closed works best. i have a 3" Tal that i can manage to set up outside but even through the double glazing I see more in the 6" that the 3" out in the garden. having the 6" telescope permanently indoors  is not ideal but the only way i can use it. my window looks SW and i have found myself looking at parts of the sky i would ever look at. i have to wait for the sky to come to me! if you already have a scope try setting it up at a window you be surprised how much you can still see! defiantly better than not using the scope at all!

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Another thing to conside in your situation might be image stabilised binocs.

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Sorry to hear about your problem.

What ever bins you get have a look at using a monopod with a pistol grip to support them. This combo can be used sitting down in a confy camping chair and adjusting the pole for height to suit your sitting position, the spike on the mono pod can go into the ground and you can tilt the whole affair back towards you. I bought mine of Amazon UK and it supporft my 15x70 very nicely. Gives me good steady views without having to support the weight.

What size bins were you considering and what budget?

Budget for the binos is about £200. What kind of views do you get through your 15x70s?

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I can easily pick out the moons of Jupiter and define some banding.

Saturn is a challenge but intersting none the less.

The terminator on the Moon is very good but of course it is not huge.

Where the bins excell is on widefield sweeps and brighter DSO. The Belt and Sword of Orion are superb, as are the Pleiades. Persues double cluster in wonderfull.

Have a looks at http://www.binocularsky.com/

A superb site with a monthly newsletter that tells you what is can be seen. I have been amazed at the quality and quanitity of targets available.

Steve Tonkin also writes for S@N and has a very good book on binolular astronomy available.

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I recently bought the helios 15x70 from FLO,  These are superb bino's & I would highly recommend them,  Not the cheapest bino's on the market but you get what you pay for with these superb bino's  :bino2:.  

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Currently trying to decide between celestron or helios 15x70

Assuming you mean the Celestron Skymasters, just be aware thatthey are over-represented in "how do I fix..." threads on astronomy forums.

(Also, given your budget, my previous suggestion of IS is inappropriate)

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Currently trying to decide between celestron or helios 15x70

Go for the Helios Apollo 15x70's. I use a heavy duty tripod and one of these bracket/led finders with mine and they are easy to set up and move. http://www.scopesnskies.com/prod/binocular/red-dot/tripod-bracket2.html If you look on the Internet you can often find other suppliers of similar. Good luck with your decision!

Cheers,

Steve

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Although over budget, I'll add another shout for the 15x70 Helios Apollo mounted on a decent tripod. The whole ensemble could be lifted out in minutes, and once focus is set, the individual focusing eyepieces do not move. The BA8 range are very sturdily built and not a fiddly bit in sight.

Just as a side note, there's a very nice 7x50 (same range as the above) for sale on Astro Buy & Sell at the minute....

http://www.astrobuysell.com/uk/propview.php?view=91352

I'm fairly sure the seller is a SGL member.

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The Helios Apollo 15x70s are abit to much. Looking at Helios Quantum-4 15x70 IF/CF atm on a monopod with trigger grip then i can use it with my 1 good hand.

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have you considered some lightweight binoculars between 7-10x magnification. My 8x40s give me excellent wide views, and I feel their even better than by old faithful Bresser 7x50's. ( I'm getting older, so maybe not getting the full 7mm exit pupil from the Bressers )Your still young enough to enjoy the larger exit pupils of a 7x50  to enjoy the vast wide, and brighter views these binoculars provide. I would go as far as saying my 7x50 and 8x40s are easily handheld with one hand., but any binocular, rested or mounted, offers the best result. Use these for your immediate grab and go, then if need be, take your time to set up your existing telescope. 

I have some 15x70s , not  too expensive, Revelation Astro's, but they don't give me any features on the surface of Jupiter, just shows me a bright white disk!  I'm sure your  existing telescope would offer better results. I'm almost disappointed with my 15x70's for their night work, but love them mounted for  daylight observations.

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