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When you have Rheumatoid Arthritis

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Having been a reasonably active amateur astronomer until recently,  I developed RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis) which has curtailed my efforts quite a bit.

Mind you, I'm  not out for the count just yet and I retain my astonishing good looks and sense of humour. Unfortunately, my knees mean that things like polar alignment the old fashioned way is almost impossible and I feel the need for a setup that is automated as much as possible and has as few wires trailing around for me to trip up on.  Otherwise, until someone comes up with an alternative to gravity I may be down and out literally.

I've currently got a 250mm  Newtonian on an EQ mount which I can just about manage, but its not probably ideal in my present circumstances. I'm likely to be doing mostly observing but might want to do some lunar or planetary imaging from time to time, so I'm thinking about something with a reasonable aperture but more manageable,

Any suggestions folks. I personally like the look of  the Celestron that do auto align for you and are wireless but there may be better choices.



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I would say something like an 8"  fork mounted sct,you are always close to the eyepiece and can be seated when observing,perfect for lunar and planetary imaging.

Edited by paul mc c
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Hi Geoff i too suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis in my knees so i totally relate to you problem, and i'm only 43!! still, i get out as much as i possibly can and do both imaging and observing, totally agree with the polar alignment comment!! i use a foam pad as it helps a lot. anyway all the very best and don't let it beat you!.


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Do you have a guide cam at all? If so SharpCap Pro (£10 p/y) has a very good PA routine. 

Depending on the mount and budget there is also the QHY Polemaster. Both these solutions would also require a computer close to the mount so may not be suitable but both will give excellent results. 

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I don't see the need to Polar Align unless you are going to be doing DSO imaging. When I had my CPC800 I could take images of the Moon, Planets and some DSOs into the bargain. The CPC800 was very good at getting an accurate alignment. It can be a bit of a beast to move though.


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