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First post - I'm aware this is a question asked a lot, but after a lot of post reading and over saturation of information I've decided asking the question myself to you guys is the only solution!
I've just become an owner of the Heritage 130p, just wondering whether a decent eyepiece set is realistic?
My budget is in the £40-£70 range, aware this might only achieve one eyepiece?
I've not picked an area of interest yet although I would love to hunt out DSOs.
I'm in NE London so light pollution is a big factor.
Thought people may like to see my recent custom design for my SkyWatcher Heritage 130p...
As a big Apollo misson geek, and not being a fan of the stock astronomer names wrap on the 130p, I decided to get creative.
I used a great moon wall sticker just £6 from Ikea (https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/p/kinnared-decoration-stickers-moon-00448463/) as well as some matt vinyl stickers from Redbubble, one for each Apollo mission patch.
Below is pics of the mod in progress and the end result - would love to hear what you think!
Found various threads on here and other forums about flocking dobsonians/newtonians but couldn't find specific images of disassembly of the very popular SkyWatcher Heritage 130p flextube and flocking of the OTA.
So having ordered some DC-Fix black velour sticky back material (can be got from various places including FLO) I thought i'd share some photos of the process from start to finish as it may help someone else in the future...
Images below with notes...
1. Focuser and shield flocking
This was the easy bit. A strip stuck inside the focuser, and just unscrew the shield, draw round it, cut the material and align and smooth down. In the last image above you can already see the significant improvement on reducing reflections comparing the flocked shield to the unflocked tube...
Notice my version of Bob's Knobs on the secondary mirror which are just black steel M4 25mm knurled thumbscrews bought off ebay for about £7 - along with the thumbscrews already on the 130P primary mirror this makes any fine collimation easy and completely tool free!
For full stealth mode I've also painted the edge and rear of the secondary mirror, and any exposed screw heads with blackboard paint to reduce reflections.
2. OTA disassembly and tube before
Note the cutout in the lower primary housing and the top ring. This aligns with the ridge of the tube seam, and means there is only one way to reassemble the telescope tube and mirror and one place for the handful of screws (4 at the bottom, 3 at the top). You'll also need an allen key to remove the 3 bolts for the dovetail mount. Simple!
Now you're ready to Flock 'N' Roll! 👍🏻
3. Flocking the tube
You'll need approx. 50cmx29cm of the material to do the tube in one go, starting along the seam. As others have described just take your time here, peel off about an inch of the backing and get the edge aligned with the tube seam stick down firmly and smooth out any air bubbles.
Then slowly keep peeling more backing (rip and remove if the excess gets in the way) and smooth down as you go, turning the tube and affixing the velour material.
4. Finished flocking and close up during application so you can see contrast/reflection comparison of before and after.
All in all only took around an hour so not a hard job as long as you prepare and concentrate! I ordered one sheet of 45cm x 1m material which was plenty, however if your not as confident you'll get it right first time then order 2m so you have more to spare if you need to start again.
Looks great, so as always I now just need clear skies to go play and see the difference it makes!
Was looking for a simple and sturdy 3-legged stand or table to raise the height slightly of the Heritage 130p when viewing on the lawn away from my garden table and so my 7yr old daughter can stand and observe easily.
Suddenly came across this thread on Reddit which seemed to have the perfect solution from our Swedish friends at Ikea... https://www.reddit.com/r/telescopes/comments/doi3n5/skywatcher_heritage_130_or_awb_onesky_ikea_kyrre/ (see pictures below) and also discovered some more customisation ideas for the same stool in this thread from across the pond...https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/463109-onesky-newtonian-astronomers-without-borders/?p=9734431
The UK Ikea store sells the stool in plain solid birch (£10) or stained black/blue (£12) and delivery is just £3.95...have a black one on order (wont arrive until 5 June though) and will report back when I, have it... https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/p/kyrre-stool-black-70434976/
Anyone else used one or made something similar for this fab little scope?
Despite the wonderfully clear skies last night, I couldn't muster the energy to go out for a session, so just played around with a Mickey Mouse All Sky Camera I have assembled out of bits. Really it is just a cylindrical Tupperware container with a hole cut in the lid for a plastic dome to be fixed into place. I used parts of smart camera bracket to hold the camera in place inside the container, with a Fujinon zoom lens attached. To provide a bit of dew control I just wrapped an 8" dew strip a couple of times around and wedged it in place just underneath the dome. After some messing around with focus and aperture setting, I got it working reasonably ok.
Despite being a complete muppet in IT terms, I managed to get an old laptop setup in my shed with teamviewer on it so I could access it from the house either on my laptop or phone. It seems to work well, got some good views last night, fun watching the planes go over and the constellations slowly moving. If nothing else it is useful to see if it is clear or not.
There is obviously a fair amount of distortion as soon as you get off axis, probably a combination of the lens and the cheap dome. I'm not looking for quality so no need to do anything about this. I will have a play with the aperture to get the best results. With the light pollution around here it is a tricky balance to draw the fainter stars out without blowing the whole lot! I experimented with 30 and 60 second exposures, plus fiddling 'in the dark' with the other settings in SharpCap. A bit of fun, although this morning the dome had frozen over so clearly more heating required!
Later I did pop the Heritage 130P out later on (after watching some appallingly bad film Mrs Stu had selected!) and had a quick run around a few objects. I was struggling with the eyepiece position on the alt az mount. I have the mount quite high on a pillar so I can clear the hedges so the eyepiece is either ontop or below the tube. I fitted an L bracket I had spare and although that added a bit of flex visible at high power, it was definitely more comfortable. The Skysurfer V RDF I have fitted is also a little too close for comfortable use so I need to find a way of extending that out a little.
M42 was surprisingly good at low power, clear green tinge to it unfiltered and the Trapezium split showing all four components at x27. Didn't try higher power.
Not having much time, I wanted to check a few doubles to see how the optics stood up. Polaris first, and whilst the primary was a little messy, the secondary showed beautifully as a tiny sharp pin point, really nice. Collimation seems pretty good but will check more thoroughly next time out.
Sigma Orionis next, and with the 6mm setting on the Nag Zoom, x108, all four components were visible, even the very faint fourth was quite clear, a nice result.
Finally Algieba. Reasonably tight double at 4.7" separation and mag 2.2 and 3.6 components. This too gave a nice split, again stars are not nearly as clean as in the Tak, and bit 'hairy' but as a quick grab and go it was still a nice image.
Actually that was not quite finally, I had a quick trawl across the Auriga clusters, and the additional aperture showed it's worth here, really quite pleasant views, well worth a look.
I guess I'm just reinforcing what others have said. This is a very capable little scope, very compact and light but great fun to use. Now I've finally found my plumbers tape, the focuser is much smoother and holds position well, no real need for an upgrade.
Here area couple of screen shots from the world's worst ASC
EDIT Found some pics of the beast itself ?