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Astro virgin deflowered, and has some questions.


binarymizar
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I finally gave my new beast some fresh air at last this evening, after virtually a week of total cloud cover.

I took it out just before dark to set it up, get it roughly "polarised" and let it acclimatize, and waited.

At 18.00 I went out for my first view. Basically I just threw it around the sky to pick up some stars. Not hugely immpresive, but everything focused pin sharp. A sign of reasonable collimation?

I also noticed that the `scope tube was dripping wet. Is this normal?

I was also surprised at the strange angles you have to get into to view. One moment the finderscope was on top, eyepiece on the side, then the next it`s on the side with the eyepiece at the bottom, so you look up into it! Normal or not?

As I thought, being left eyed only, it was awkward at times to look through the finderscope. Can you get a diagonal that fits on the end?

As of writing this (19.35) a lot of mid level cloud has come in which might curtail things, but I`ll leave it out until midnight in the hope....! :D

So if any of you fine fellows can answer all or some of my questions, I will be very grateful!

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Hello matey,

Yes you can get a right angle finder - not had one myself but any one of the banners on the top or nottom of the page will be able to advise on sizes / prices and suitability.

Yes it is also quite normal for the scope to be wet, some night there will be no dew at all other nights the secondary mirror is affected / finder and everyting else - a small 12v hairdryer will help for the finder etc, but the scope will have been built with dew in mind.

The EP on an equatorial mounted scope does end up in some very odd positions... Your scope should be mounted inside two tube rings, you'll be able to loosen these off slightly and revolve the tube. Make sure that the scope is horizontal when you do this or is will much up the balance of the scope.

Ant

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I recently got myself a 7x50 right angle finder. I haven't had much chance to use it, but when I have, it has made a world of difference. Rotate the finder in the mount so that the finder eyepiece is parallel to your focuser. That makes it easier to transfer your eye from one to the other. The RA finder is worth the money.

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Dripping wet and frozen solid are normal i'm afraid...No damage will be done as long as you dry all your stuff out slowly and throughly.

As for the diagonal, I don't use one. I favour the red dot finders....Personal preference.

As for collimation, it's a lot easier than it sounds....If you need help then we'll talk you through it.....

As for rotating the scope...Get yourself another ring for the scope and place it behind the top ring, that way you can rotate the scope without it slipping and possibly making an embarrassing tinkling noise!

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Good idea Phattire, about the extra ring. The only trouble is it seems you have to buy two of them at £40 a pop. A lot of cash seeing as how you only need one of `em!

I`ve looked around for a right angled adapter for my finderscope and not had much luck. It seems as if I`ll have to go the route of buying a dedicated r/a finderscope.

....Oh woe is my bank balance... :insects1:

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My friend told me (as he was told by the shop) that you should use both eyes to centre an object with a r/d finder. I tried and saw nothing until I used one eye. PLUS, they`re not magnified are they?

Just had a look around ebay and put a bid of £2.50 on a jubille clip set, the sort that you make you`re own clip up to the desired length. I`m gonna go the Andy`s Shot Glass method!

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RA finders can be harder to use than regular finders, the eyepiece position is more comfortable but they are a lot harder to line up with what the scope is actually pointing at.

A red dot/ telrad/ rigel is the best bet IMHO.

I haven't found this, Gaz. I use my red dot to get myself in the general area, and then just put the object I am looking for in the cross hairs, and I'm home. If it's a bright object, I only need the red dot. My 7x50 finder has a 7 degree FOV, so I only have to be close to find what I'm looking for. The more comfortable posittion of my head while I am centering on a target allows me to take my time, and makes it more easy and comfortable.

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I have battled with finders both straight through and RA but much prefer my Telrad which gives field of view rings. Any decent planetarium software will reproduce these rings allowing you to work out how many fields of view you need to move to be over the target. You don't need to be able to actually see the target at all. Sounds a bit complicated but I find it much easier than star hopping with a finder. I think finders are probably especially useful when using long focal length scopes with an narrow field of view

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