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Best material for DIY dew shield


RikM
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I got fed up with my secondary dewing up at SGL5 earlier in the year so I bought a couple of foam camping sit-mats and tapped them together for a rough dew shield. This works a treat, but looks ridiculous. I asked at Hobycraft for 6mm black neoprene sheet but they don't stock it any more. What material should I use to make a better dew shield and where is the best place to get it?

Rik

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What not just bite the bullet and buy one - I mean it seems mad to make do for the cost of a dewshield when the scope costs how much !!!!

The dewshield will be a lifesaver and will contribute more to your viewing than almost anything so why not splash out and get a production one.

I mean if you face dew conditions (and everyone did at SSP for the last two years) apart from those with dewshield then your possibly having a great nights viewing ruined after you have spen twice what a dewshield costs getting there.

I have a cheap Orion one for my 8" but would happily have shelled out for one of the really nice astrozap ones which have a better finish on them and in fact I might do that anyway just to have a nicer one.

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Heheh - I think the foam looks OK... if you cut it to size, rather than "swiss-roll" it! :p

I used little pieces of paper masking tape to hold the two ends together. When it's about right, just whap some duct tape over the whole lot to join it properly. The second one will look better than the first... :D

Edited by Macavity
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Tesco's call it "Yoga mat" and it comes in deep blue (and PINK!!) for around £5 - there is enough for several shields!!

If you cut it carefully and accurately it can be joined with "superglue". Make it to fit exactly and the thing will slide onto the scope and stay put. You can build it up in layers to cover dew strips etc.

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I shelled out and bought a commercial one for my 14 inch....it was rubbish. It was heavy, flopped about and didn't fit well....and it cost £40 :D

The camping mat I replaced it with was vastly better, and I made it so it'd fit the various accessories on the front of the scope, which the commercial ones don't do.

All my scopes now have scruffy looking but highly effective camping mat dewshields held together with gaffa tape....I don't care what they look like, just how effective they are. :p

Cheers

Rob

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I too use a camping mat for my 8" and 12" dobs. Bought from Asda for £2.99 each and it's matt black on both sides....awesome. Velcro down the joint, looks great.

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The only gaffa tape I had available at the time I made mine was white, and I wasn't terribly neat either!

I keep meaning to make new ones and cut everything to shape, but for now they are all 'swiss rolls' in grey with scruffy white gaffa :D:D

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I have an astrozap one for my nexstar, Its well made, flocked on the inside and has a foam bumper at the scope end to protect the scope. Fits a charm and the velcro grips like a crocodile.

Its much better than the basic orion one for my newt and before SSP I'll get another AstroZap one for the newt.

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I had an Astrozap dew shield for my 6" SCT and the quality was excellent. However, when I bought my 10" Flextube I felt I needed a shroud, dew shield for the front of the main scope and a small dew shield for the 9x50 finder. This was going to cost alot so I made all 3 out of Neoprene for under £10 and it works very well.

Mark

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I used (From Sports direct.com store) a Lonsdale excersize mat (normally £15 but on offer at £7.50)

This made a really professional looking dew shield as the material is black , very light and has a texture that seems superb for the job.

It also has braided edges which gives that more appealing look to it.

Black Duck tape over the seam and embroidery hoops over each end of the dew shield.

Graham

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Thanks to All for your help.

I think I have a plan. Gaffa tape reinforcement for my current olive green Swiss roll (see pic). It works great, is nice and light, and it fits well, slides on and off comfortably but stays nice and steady and doesn't flop about on the scope.

Then either a trip to Asda to look for black fullsize mats, or get a sheet of neoprene to make a shield like Mark's. (Thanks for the inspiration neighbour:D). I like the sound of velcro to seal the open side, then it could lay flat for storage.

Is there any kind of optimum length for a given scope, (dew prevention ratio)???

Rik

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Not less than 1.5 x the diameter

That's the great benefit of rolling your own. Really you need 2 or 3 in different lengths. When the air is still but very damp, 4xD is about the smallest that's any use ... but if there's even a slight breeze such a long tube will cause issues.

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  • 4 years later...

Thinking about making a smaller version of one of those for my Canon 1100D lens for when taking wide field shots, but I wonder if the camping mat material might be too thick to make a smaller version.

Has anyone tried making one for a camera lens, and if it was too thick, then can anyone recommend a slighter thinner but just as effective alternative? Bearing in mind that it'll only be small, so a camping mat would be a bit OTT anyway. Although I suppose I could use another part of the mat for a scope later on.

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I have the camping mat as well but joined mine by taking some wool and a large needle to sew up the join. Works a treat and is nice and snug.

For my finder guider I grabbed a neoprene beer mit and cut the bottom off.

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