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I am keen to enhance my skill in finding objects for viewing with my 200P Dobsonian. 

I'm getting used to the 9x50 straight through finder but I want to make life a little easier for my back, so I've been looking at enhancements.

The stars indicate my current "appeal" rating...

Telrad*** or Rigel Quikfinder****- Both get lots of positive comments and clearly loved by many. But can I achieve the same for less outlay? Maybe a DIY version? Ref Chuck Lott 

Setting circles and inclinometer  * - Like the price but seems a fiddle and not easy to do in the dark

Right angle Finder * - Easier on my back but a few people have said they struggle with them and I don't think it is going to solve the  issue that I need a 'finder for my finder'.  More expense!

RACI** - See above. The correction may help I am not convinced and even more outlay!

Sighting tube** - Very cheap and already implemented. It helps to an extent.

Split Pupil Finder ***** - This is cheap and simple to build and I love the write up. So why isn't everyone using them? Ref Jerry Oltion 

SkyEye**** - I have found a suitable mount for my phone and after a very brief (thanks clouds) last night, I was impressed with the free version using Indirect mode.  The app is being developed and I like the idea of adding my targets to a log which you can do with the pretty cheap Pro version. I am impressed so far. ref Site

Other Push To systems * - I don't fancy adding lots of hardware to my telescope. I chose the Dobsonian because I wanted simplicity.

Green laser / Rifle Scope (minus *) - Errr, I am not out in the wilderness.

I would really be interested in knowing if others have explored SkEye's Indirect mode and the Split Pupil Finder as reviews of these seem a little thin on the ground. Or perhaps I am missing an alternative solutioN?

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RACI and Telrad or Rigel is the way to go. Telrad / Rigel to get you roughly in the area then RACI to zero in.

Notice just how many go this route after trying other things. It simply works.

 

Edited by johninderby
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20 minutes ago, johninderby said:

RACI and Telrad or Rigel is the way to go. Telrad / Rigel to get you roughly in the area then RACI to zero in.

Notice just how many go this route after trying other things. It simply works.

 

That was the route I took with the Skywatcher 250dob. Works beautifully. I bought the Skywatcher RACI and it offered stunning views in it’s own right 😀

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That split pupil finder is very clever. I might make one for my spotting scope and it’ll be useful and easy to attach directly to a short scope like a Mak for those times when you haven’t much time or you’ve forgotten the finder proper.

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This is what I use on my 12 inch dob and have done for a number of years now. Combined with a good star chart, I've been able to locate and observe many, many deep sky objects with this setup comprising a Rigel Quikfinder and a RACI 50mm finder. For me, I don't feel that I can improve on this arrangement:

 

dob12topend.JPG

Edited by John
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Having suffered the deficiencies of straight-thru finders, I would recommend a RACI finder, plus  a red dot finder or a simple sight to act as a 'finder for the finder'.

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When I had my 200P I had a red dot finder and a right angle finder. I just set them up as best I could by centering Polaris rather than anything during the day. Worked fine for me.

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8 hours ago, Spile said:

I am keen to enhance my skill in finding objects for viewing with my 200P Dobsonian..... 

 

Your list should include PRACTICE as an enhancement of course :smiley:

At the end of the day it's getting out there regularly with some targets in mind and some star maps that will increase your success rate.

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Are RACI 9x50 scopes all the same size? I just put a telrad on my cpc800 but I like the idea of taking my straight 9x50 off and put a RACI finder on it. I would not want to have to change my mounts tho'. Here's my present setup. 

 

Telrad 1.jpg

Telrad.jpg

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Yes a 9x50 RACI finder is the same diameter but not sure if the tube is a bit short to fit the CPC bracket. However a new finder will come with a bracket and would just need to replace the finder shoe so not very expensive.

The Celestron illuminated finder comes with a new bracket.

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/finders/celestron-illuminated-right-angle-correct-image-finderscope.html

Edited by johninderby
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5 hours ago, johninderby said:

Yes a 9x50 RACI finder is the same diameter but not sure if the tube is a bit short to fit the CPC bracket. However a new finder will come with a bracket and would just need to replace the finder shoe so not very expensive.

The Celestron illuminated finder comes with a new bracket.

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/finders/celestron-illuminated-right-angle-correct-image-finderscope.html

Yea I have been able to find the celestron ones, but I don't need the bracket or the illuminated eyepiece. A little pricey with everything.  I may have to settle for the whole bundle and have spare parts. Lol Thanks for the reply!

Bobby

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I have given SkEye Indirect mode a couple of outings and I have been impressed so far. Indirect mode allows you to place the phone on the OTA (mine is attached to the finder) and align it using known targets. 

My comments sort of turned into the review...

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am now using a Telrad alongside the SkyEye app to support the straight-through finder. 

Each device has its pros and cons which persuades me to carry on using all three in the following order...

SkyEye - Alignment is quick using a couple of good targets. It can sometimes forget where it is, but a second later it catches up and it is often spot on. It directed me immediately to Alkalurops last night with me having to use a finder or even a WA EP! Figure of 8 calibration makes a massive difference.

Telrad - Really quick and easy to use but the designer needs to use a variable resistor that doesn't place the dim range all at one end! The dewing up is terrible though. Often do not need to use the STF and can go directly to the EP

Straight-through finder -  Useful if I need a bit of magnification to locate an object that the Telrad cannot see. 

42mm EP - Useful if my target is in a busy field 

Edited by Spile
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1 hour ago, Spile said:

I am now using a Telrad alongside the SkyEye app to support the straight-through finder. 

Each device has its pros and cons which persuades me to carry on using all three in the following order...

SkyEye - Alignment is quick using a couple of good targets. It can sometimes forget where it is, but a second later it catches up and it is often spot on. It directed me immediately to Alkalurops last night with me having to use a finder or even a WA EP! Figure of 8 calibration makes a massive difference.

Telrad - Really quick and easy to use but the designer needs to use a variable resistor that doesn't place the dim range all at one end! The dewing up is terrible though. Often do not need to use the STF and can go directly to the EP

Straight-through finder -  Useful if I need a bit of magnification to locate an object that the Telrad cannot see. 

42mm EP - Useful if my target is in a busy field 

I find a quick recce with the binoculars is useful, especially if it's a complicated hop, or the sky is bright.

I also prefer a RACI finder, as it means you don't end up on your hands and knees, plus I prefer the corrected image (like the binoculars) for finding.

That dim range of the Telrad reticle is useful in a dark sky. A home-made dew shield is easy to make, though. 

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