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Galaxy imaging - Help please - Confusion abounds!

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I am hoping to image galaxies (and images with a collection of (apparently) smaller galaxies).

I was thinking of purchasing a second-hand Celestron Edge 11HD plus AZ-EQ6GT mount plus off axis guider plus filter set plus CCD camera - total expenditure some $10,000 (£6,500). This is above my intended budget (no surprise there!).

I would love anyone's input of whether I am contemplating the right route or going barking mad?

I have rejected the (apparently) easy route of adding a Hyperstar to the OTA to reduce the auto-guiding steep learning curve - but have I been inappropriately scared off by worries about system flex and collimation?

Are there other questions I should be asking to avoid expensive mistakes???

Thanlk youb so much.

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Personally, I'd go bigger on the mount. The C11 is a bit of a heavy old beast. It can be done (Tim jardine has done 30 minute subs with a standard C11 on a NEQ6) but it aint for the faint hearted. I know that mu old NEQ6 was a wobbly affair with my standard C11 on it.

Even with a focal reducer you are going to be asking a lot by imaging at 1800mm.

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A bigger mount, or go for a 10" reflector, there's not much diffrence in the end result although the FL seem a lot larger, i would start off with just a Mono CCD get the guiding working and focus, image exposure time,  once all that's sorted out it might take some time, then think about filter wheels ect......

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The prerequisite for imaging at the focal length that you have in mind is a first class mount and this alone will chew up your budget quite easily if not more.

This is a rather specialised set up that you are proposing and it does eat up money like no end. An alternative would perhaps be an AZEQ6 and an 8" RC .

This is a much more compact and lighter design than your C11 and would require a reducer as the field of an RC is flat. If you could investigate the QSI or SBIG range of cameras with an on camera guider   it will reduce the risk of flexure in the train. Unfortunately collimation is something that you have to put up with any mirror based system.


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