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Illuminated Reticle Eyepieces

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#1 Bart



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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:00 PM

Illuminated Reticle Eyepieces, do folks use these to center a goto during the calibration phase?

If so, what focal length is the best to use?

#2 mich_al



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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:30 PM

I do. Higher power is more accurate. A downside is that initial stars may not be in the field of view of your hi powered eyepiece without extra care centering it with the finder. The Meade 9mm battery reticle (260X) I bought for the job needed repair to the electrics soon after I got it. Their QA is krap. Other than that it's a good eyepiece for goto alignment and drift alignment. The illumination is not usually needed. De-focus and leave the star as a big blob

#3 Bart



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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:43 PM

I get it, fit the blob in the center of the reticle.

#4 nemo129



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Posted 09 March 2011 - 11:23 PM

That works (the defocused star or blob method). If you really want one, as Mich Al explained, don't get a Meade. For some reason they just cannot get them right! Orion makes a couple of nice ones. I think they have a 5mm, 12mm and a ~20mm. The higher power yields better accuracy for alignments, but as Mich Al said your star may not end up in the FOV of the EP initially. I picked up a 12.5 mm Plossl Rigel PulseGuide EP from Agena Astro. It is a nice unit with double lines and two colors for LEDs (red or yellow) and has worked very well for me. I suppose the blob method would have worked for me as well for certain tasks, but would not be useful for drift alignments. I guess it depends on your needs.

#5 MikeBOKC



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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:09 AM

I have the 20mm reticle eyepiece Astronomics makes. When I begin alignment I go to Polaris with the 40mm eyepiece to make locating it easier, then plug in the reticle eyepiece and go through a two-star alignment, then put it back in the case for next time. Overall it makes for a slightly easier and more precise alignment, but it's not a necessity -- just a nice extra tool to have on hand.



    True Blue

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 08:52 AM

Unless you are drift aligning, you don't "really" need one.

#7 Bart



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Posted 10 March 2011 - 10:08 AM

I agree, it's more of a luxury rather than a necessity. But, it does make it a bit easier to perform the centering.

#8 Bowmoreman


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Posted 10 March 2011 - 05:55 PM

I used my 5mm one (Orion ultrascopic) for drift aligning on my pier... haven't used it since...

(5mm in my C11 is pretty much a "non starter" as you might imagine)... I used it in my TMB80SS well over a year ago at my last drift align... haven't had to since - the bennies of a permanent mount in observatory)

#9 Mike E.

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 11:50 AM

Bart, have you seen this link for Reticle Eyepieces here on cloudy nights ?


There are 27 different reticle eyepieces currently on the list.


#10 Bart



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Posted 11 March 2011 - 07:46 PM

Thanks Mike.

#11 Rossmon



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Posted 11 March 2011 - 09:59 PM

I have 2, A 20mm Rigel for scope alignment and a 12mm for pec recording and drift alignment. If u plan on taking pictures and have pec u need a high power reticle for that. I waited around for the right used deals and didn't have to pay very much. A lot of the high power ones collect dust the 20 I think is more popular as everyone pretty much wants a good alignment for goto. I think I paid about $45 for each.

#12 Tom and Beth

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Posted 12 March 2011 - 01:43 AM

I've been using the Meade 12MM wired with double crosshairs. It plugs into my Astro Physics (QMD) mount and allows for aligning the encoders quickly. I also use it for the drift alignment when first setting up in the Observatory. (I have a GOTO on another pier)

The EP itself is ... not of the high quality of an Abbe or TV Plossl but you're only using it for a few minutes.

If you wanted to do double star measurements the Celestron model with multi reticle is highly recommended.

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