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Show your Comet Hunting Gear!

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#1 aa6ww

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 09:10 AM

Thought I'd try this and see how it works. Lots of people are posting the same pictures over and over and over and over again on comet PannStarr, and many are failing at trying to see comet PannStarr with small binoculars.
Ive been observing Comet PannStarr since March 8th, even through the clouds successfully with one scope in particular, but have used others. My main scope has been this 6" Celestron F/5 refractor on a Bogen tripod.
If you feel proud to display what you found comet PannStarr with, or any of the other comets coming around, show it off, even if its just your eyeball, a camera, binoculars or a telescope, and maybe how you've observed the comet. I hope this doesn't become another thread full of pictures of the comet though, that's not the intent of this.
Just trying to give some props to our gear instead of putting all the focus on the same view of the comet every night.
I hope this is the right category to post this thread.

Thanks!

...Ralph

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#2 aa6ww

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 09:13 AM

Another successful scope Ive used is my APM 180 F/6 comet hunter. This really pulled out the fine details in the coma, and brought out a wild dual tail on comet PannStarr.
This was also using my Bogen heavy duty tripod, and worked best with straight through viewing.

...Ralph

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#3 *skyguy*

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 10:36 AM

I've used my 5.5" f/3.64 "green tube" Celestron Comet Catcher for many years observing many comets. It's recently been switched from a Vixen Polaris Mount to an Ioptron GOTO Smart EQ mount ... the complete setup, including counterweight and eyepiece, weighs only a very light 22 pounds! I hope to catch Panstarrs tonight for the first time ... nothing but clouds for the past 2 weeks. :mad:

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#4 EdTheEdge

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:17 AM

This is what I used for Panstarrs 12X60 Binoculars on Orion Paragon Plus mount:

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#5 brokenwave

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 11:23 AM

Nothing special, Nikon D700 with 180mmED lens.

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#6 *skyguy*

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:48 PM

This is what I used for Panstarrs 12X60 Binoculars on Orion Paragon Plus mount:



Your binoculars look like the Meade 12x60 "$20 specials"! I also have them and I was very surprised at their great performance and overall quality. I expect they will see a lot of service observing Comet Panstarrs.

#7 *skyguy*

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 12:52 PM

Nothing special, Nikon D700 with 180mmED lens.



I'd call a Nikon D700 with a 180mm ED lens pretty special! Great image!

#8 MikeBOKC

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 01:15 PM

This pic was on the local paper's website, taken at the club outreach event Wednesday night -- my TMB92L with 24 Panoptic in the diagonal:

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#9 jrbarnett

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 02:03 PM

Howdy Ralph.

I'm going to christen my comet hunting setup this weekend (and take some pictures).

It's an Astrotelescopes 152mm f/5.9 achromat with an 8x50 GSO RACI finder on a DSV-3 alt-az mount equipped with Sky Commander DSCs. I figure it'll provide a similar experience to your 150mm f/5 achro shown in the first picture. I've nicknamed the scope "Leslie". :lol:

I need to dig through my S&T archive. I seem to recall a "how to comet hunt" article back in the early-ish 80s. I'll let you know when I bag my first new comet. :grin:

- Jim

#10 ahopp

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 02:37 PM

Here you go:

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#11 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 02:56 PM

Ralph:

No photos of the gear... Been using a NP-101 or a 100mm F/6 Orion Achro along with some 11x80 binoculars. Here shortly I will be using my favorite comet scope, the 12.5 inch F/4.06 Dob. It + Paracorr + 31mm Hunk of TV glass provides a 6.6mm exit pupil at about 48x with a 1.6+ degree TFoV.

There's a pair of Carton 20 x 80s on the local Craigslist, I will looking at those this afternoon, if they are in good shape, they should be reasonable comet binos.

Jon

#12 CarlDD

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 03:04 PM

Car Window mounted Borg 77.
Sandy Gound beach, Anguilla.

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#13 EdTheEdge

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 04:31 PM

This is what I used for Panstarrs 12X60 Binoculars on Orion Paragon Plus mount:



Your binoculars look like the Meade 12x60 "$20 specials"! I also have them and I was very surprised at their great performance and overall quality. I expect they will see a lot of service observing Comet Panstarrs.


Yes indeed they are the $20 specials! LOL! I use mine all the time I think we got a pretty sweet deal from OPT!!!

#14 Cary

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 05:41 PM

Since we've been clouded out all but one day so far this has been my primary comet hunting gear.

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#15 *skyguy*

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Posted 14 March 2013 - 05:46 PM

Since we've been clouded out all but one day so far this has been my primary comet hunting gear.


I think you'll see more stars than comets downing those "guys". ;)

#16 aa6ww

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 04:01 AM

Since we've been clouded out all but one day so far this has been my primary comet hunting gear.


Good call Cary, Saturday night could be clear though, and probably our last clear night before the moon gets too bright and PannStarr starts too fade. Good luck if you get another chance to see it. I'll probably go out again by myself sat night if the weather cooperates for an hr or so.

...Ralph

#17 Pinbout

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 06:09 AM

my surplus shed homebrew.

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#18 hfjacinto

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 07:58 AM

Just a set of Binos.

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#19 rmollise

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 07:59 AM

Here ya go...25x100s on a Pete Peterson mount... ;)

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#20 nytecam

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 05:29 PM

This pic was on the local paper's website, taken at the club outreach event Wednesday night -- my TMB92L with 24 Panoptic in the diagonal:

WOW Mike - that Panstarrs comet is really bright in your scope :o

I used my M12+SX Lodestar-C from my backyard obsy to catch the comet :grin:

#21 aa6ww

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 03:56 AM

Since we've been clouded out all but one day so far this has been my primary comet hunting gear.


This definitely makes me think of the phrase, "It came, we saw, we drank!"

..Rock solid cloud cover tonight in Sacramento, again!!

...Ralph

#22 aa6ww

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 04:13 AM

Howdy Ralph.

I'm going to christen my comet hunting setup this weekend (and take some pictures).

It's an Astrotelescopes 152mm f/5.9 achromat with an 8x50 GSO RACI finder on a DSV-3 alt-az mount equipped with Sky Commander DSCs. I figure it'll provide a similar experience to your 150mm f/5 achro shown in the first picture. I've nicknamed the scope "Leslie". :lol:

I need to dig through my S&T archive. I seem to recall a "how to comet hunt" article back in the early-ish 80s. I'll let you know when I bag my first new comet. :grin:

- Jim


Leslie should be an excellent scope for just about everything. I considered that scope myself when I was looking for a 6" wide field scope, but in my case, I was looking for the largest widefield refractor I could mount on my Vixen GP-DX mount, which has a weight capacity of 22 pounds. Your Astro Telescope just tips the scale at slightly more than that. My Celestron tips the sale at 16 pounds, and is extremely manageable on my Vixen mount. When used for hunting for PannStarr, this was the first time I ever used it on my Big Bogen Tripod which is rated at 46 pounds I think and is about 9 feet tall, more height than I'd ever plan to use.

Good luck with comet hunting this weekend. I'm hoping for some clear skies myself. Id like to try out my new Oberwerk binoculars, which as of tonight, I just managed to fix a major quality issue I had with them, as noted in the Binocular section of this forum under the title "Fix for 25x100 wobbly center bar"

...Ralph

#23 coopman

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 08:49 AM

For those of you who may not know, there is a "comet hunters" discussion group at "groups.yahoo.com".






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