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First light report CT 152

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#1 dlapoint

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 01:28 AM

Well after what seemed like forever, the skies finally cleared. I've been waiting patiently for tonight to come. First off the scope seems a lot smaller than I thought it would be. It is not high end, but better made than the average middle range scope. The focuser is huge! 3 inch beast,but it works surprisingly well.
Some things I noticed about the scope. There was something rough under the dew shield that scratched the tube the first time I moved it. Now it retracts nicely. I noticed a circular scratch or streak on the lens about an inch or more in diameter. But only a millimeter or less thick. I'm not sure yet if this is going to be a problem.
I'm mounting this scope on an eq5. It seems to handle it well,but I think I will need another counter weight. I tried it in AZ mode, but I was scared the dovetail bar would pop out.
I wanted first light to be something that would show off the scopes abilities. So I went for the double cluster, the views were ok, nothing special. Tried to split the double double,but no go. I decided to let the scope sit for another 20 minutes to cool off. This made a big difference, stars were much sharper. The double double was now to low for me to split, so I hit iota cass. Ok split(something my old 5" f 6.5 could never split) Moving on, hit M35, 36, 37, 38 all of which were fantastic, M1 really easy at low power. Castor split really well(another tough one for the 5") The nebulosity around m42 was excellent. Viewing all the dso's in the sword of orion at one time was nice. Rigel and mintaka did not split, but were very low in the sky however. the Pleiades were jaw dropping.
Last on the list tonight was Jupiter. I was really taken back by the image scale and how much detail was there. The planet did have a purple halo about three times the size of the planet its self. An orion v block took care of 80% of it. I wish the moon had been up so I could push the power on something. I still need to get the scope out a few more times before I can get to know its true strengths. At this point I'm on the fence, but I really want to like this scope. As for the ca, I can honestly say its not that bad. Compared to my old Antares 127 f6.5 I believe this scope has better color correction. On the 127 I could never bring stars like Vega to focus. This scope produces a star with a purple halo. That I can live with.
So over all.... not sure yet

#2 Lane

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 02:09 AM

Good report, that pretty much matches what I have seen with my AT152. Like you I have noticed that the 152 does take a while to adjust to the outside temperature and until it does, the views are not very good. I had not expected that when I bought the scope. I am finding that Jupiter is really nice in this scope and like you the purple halo around the bright stuff is something that I can live with. Although I have been using the Baader Semi Apo and that does knock down that purple halo by a little more that 50% to my eyes.

#3 dakota

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 09:21 AM

I generally setup my AT152 several hours before using it. And now with winter soon to set in the change in temperature from in the house to outside can be quite drastic.

I mount mine on a CG-5GT and use 2-11 pound counterweights to properly balance the scope. Using my Supercharged WO binoviewers, views of the moon are jawdropping. To my eyes the CA is very tolerable and minor, even on very bright objects. Although I got flamed on another thread about my views of Jupiter, to MY EYES the purple halo was minor at worst and I didn't use any filter(s). It's amazing how other people can tell a person what they saw. :cool:

Nice report.

#4 dlapoint

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 12:24 PM

Hans: do you ever use the CT duo T with this scope? If so, how do u like it?
Lane: Is your filter in the eye piece and the diagonal?
As far as ca goes it is there. It is just that I can still get a tight focus of the bright object. This is what is making the difference I think. Its not the purple halo that destroys the image as the purple blur preventing you from seeing the image.

#5 dlapoint

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 12:26 PM

One more question. What finders do you use with these scopes. I'd like some feed back before I start drilling holes.

#6 dakota

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 03:15 PM

Hans: do you ever use the CT duo T with this scope? If so, how do u like it?
Lane: Is your filter in the eye piece and the diagonal?
As far as ca goes it is there. It is just that I can still get a tight focus of the bright object. This is what is making the difference I think. Its not the purple halo that destroys the image as the purple blur preventing you from seeing the image.


I have only used the CT Duo mount once with the scope. I did place the 2 counterweights on to balance the unit. I generally use it with the CG-5 as I installed a ADM saddle on the mount which does a great job of holding the scope securely. I still believe that the CT Duo is a great mount.

Enjoy your scope.

#7 dakota

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 03:22 PM

One more question. What finders do you use with these scopes. I'd like some feed back before I start drilling holes.


As of now I haven't placed a finder on the scope. If I were to do so I would probably lean towards a Telrad. There should be a mounting holder/bracket on the focuser. IMO what viewfinder to use is a matter of personal preference.

#8 jrbarnett

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 08:53 PM

Not coming to focus sounds like an optics and/or focuser travel issue in the 127mm rather than a color correction problem. The scope really needs to be able to achieve a sharp focus to determine how well color corrected it is. It's pretty amazing how much false color some scopes put up when even slightly de-focused.

I like my Astrotelescopes version of this Kunming scope, but mainly for wide field, dark sky observing. For me it could never be a main or only scope. But everyone's a little different in their preferences.

- Jim

#9 dlapoint

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 01:43 AM

Hello Jim: The other scope would put up sharp views of the moon, so I think the lens was ok. But on any bright point, like a star the purple haze made it very hard to tell when you were in focus.
I had the scope out a second time, ane was even more pleased than the first night. I got this scope mostly for OC's, star fields, etc. I also wanted a more compact dso scope to take to dark sight. I'm still trying to figure out if the scope is well collimated. Optic testing is a little out of my comfort zone. I will pump up the mag on the moon, and rack the focus on either side when looking at a bright star.

#10 Lane

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 02:38 AM

Lane: Is your filter in the eye piece and the diagonal?


I got a 2" filter and use it on my 2" diagonal, so I don't have to keep moving it from one eyepiece to another. Mainly I use it with 1.25" eyepieces, not really needed for the low power views. I also only use it for viewing planets and the moon. It will knock down the blue haze around bright stars, but it also knocks down some of the transmitted light and I want to see as many stars as possible when looking for clusters and other DSO's. So I just ignore the blue haze.

My old 80mm Achro turned bright stars and planets into oval shapes with one side of the oval being red and the other side being blue. I hated that. This scope shows CA as a uniform bluish haze around the object which IMO is far better. I don't see it interfering with details on Jupiter as some have reported and I don't see it affecting my ability to get pinpoint stars. I am wondering if some of the negative reports are simply due to people looking before the optics had cooled properly. I noticed the other night when it was fairly cold that 30 minutes after I put the scope outside I was still not getting pinpoint stars on anything mag 3 and brighter. It was nearly an hour before it started to settle down.

#11 Lane

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 02:44 AM

One more question. What finders do you use with these scopes. I'd like some feed back before I start drilling holes.


I use this one and I have it mounted on the top of the ring closest to the dew shield. I found the screw to mount it at ace hardware. There are two holes in the bottom of this mount and only one on the ring but that does not seem to be an issue. It holds very tight and does not shift.

#12 doctordub

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 04:03 PM

I use the same one on my AT 152.
CS
Jonathan

#13 dlapoint

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 07:37 PM

cool guys. I have the 3 inch focuser, mine might be a different set up than yours.

#14 Lane

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 01:19 AM

I would put it on the tube mounting rings not the focuser unless you have really tall mount. With it on the focuser I found I had crawl around on the ground to see the red dot when the scope is aimed up high. With it mounted on the forward tube ring it is easy to use no matter where the scope is pointed.

#15 dlapoint

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 01:31 AM

Thanks thats a good point. I had the scope out a few more times, and I have to say I'm really impressed. Used it in the day light today at 225x with sharp views. I even hit Jupiter the other night at 450x I was not expecting much but the view was still very good. CA was everywhere, but the details still stoodout. This may be my goto scope from now on.

#16 Lane

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 01:47 AM

I hope you have a dark location where you can go with this scope to take advantage of the great low power wide views it provides. That doesn't work so well in a light polluted location.

I have only managed to get to a dark place 2 times with this scope so far and both times clouds rolled in and messed things up before I got much viewing done. I am keeping my fingers crossed for this coming Friday or Saturday night to be cloud free at the park I like to go to in West Texas. I am anxious to see how Orion looks in this scope at a really dark location. I Can't Wait!

#17 dlapoint

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 06:49 PM

I do have some dark sky sights within 30 min drive from where I live. A few times a year I get 6.5-7th mag skies. S yes I'm looking forward to that. But even in my back yard, dso's like m35-38 all stand out very well. M45 is seen like never before in my other scopes. Orion, the belt and sword area are fantastic. You don't really relize how large the M42 nebula complex is untill you get a scope like this on it. It just seems to go on forever.






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