Jump to content


Photo

This red dot thing has to go...

  • Please log in to reply
32 replies to this topic

#1 GTog

GTog

    Vostok 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 168
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2013

Posted 14 November 2013 - 03:28 PM

The red dot finder that came with my 6SE never did point exactly right, and the adjustment knobs couldn't adjust it enough. Plus now the thing's dying.

So what to replace it with? Doesn't have to be another red dot. Something with crosshairs would be nice.

#2 Arctic_Eddie

Arctic_Eddie

    Soyuz

  • *****
  • Posts: 3634
  • Joined: 30 Dec 2007
  • Loc: St. Petersburg, FL

Posted 14 November 2013 - 03:48 PM

Most RDF devices that come with Celestron scopes need a shim under the back edge to align properly. Two layers of heavy paper worked OK on mine.

A better choice is a RACI finder. It mounts in place of the RDF using the same holes. Agena Astro has a nice one in the GSO brand.

#3 ourobouros2k2

ourobouros2k2

    Messenger

  • -----
  • Posts: 489
  • Joined: 10 Nov 2011
  • Loc: okc area, oklahoma

Posted 14 November 2013 - 05:13 PM

hard to beat a Telrad. Love mine.

#4 dpippel

dpippel

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1162
  • Joined: 05 Apr 2013
  • Loc: Desierto de Sonora

Posted 14 November 2013 - 06:36 PM

Personally I think that for a 6SE a red dot finder is perfect, as long as it works. ;) With the NexStar mount an optical finder isn't really needed IMO.

The Telrad is a great device. It's one drawback is bulk, which is compounded when mounted on a small OTA like the C6. I've been looking at RDF alternatives and am considering this guy:

http://agenaastro.co...th-m5-base.html

#5 TmaninTn

TmaninTn

    Messenger

  • -----
  • Posts: 460
  • Joined: 19 Dec 2010
  • Loc: Nashville, TN USA

Posted 14 November 2013 - 07:56 PM

Green Laser Pointer is the way to go. I can't understand why anyone uses anything else, unless you are near an airport or something. Once you get it aligned you only need to look up.

#6 hopskipson

hopskipson

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1267
  • Joined: 24 Jun 2010
  • Loc: Queens, New Yawk, Light pollution Headquarters!

Posted 14 November 2013 - 09:31 PM

Green Laser Pointer is the way to go. I can't understand why anyone uses anything else, unless you are near an airport or something. Once you get it aligned you only need to look up.


I would love to use one but I'm between two of the busiest airports and always hear reports of cockpits being illuminated by laser pointers.

#7 BigC

BigC

    Gemini

  • *****
  • Posts: 3337
  • Joined: 29 Sep 2010
  • Loc: SE Indiana

Posted 14 November 2013 - 11:19 PM

Living right under a main flight path I choose not to use laser pointer;saw at least 5 aircraft during hour of observation past morning from 5 to 6 a.m. ,and they were all over the compass.

Telrad or bullseye style finders are muchyless likely to cause trouble. :smirk:

Bullseye finders also don't obscure the object.Simple red dot finders usually dim the view too much for my liking.

A Telrad and an optical finder of at least 6x30(preferably bigger) make a very effective tool:the Telrad to get in the neighborhood,th optical finder to get close and the main scope to view the object.

Really,considering how many thousand flights occur daily over just the U.S. including general aviation and medivac helicopters ,shining lasers into the sky should be done very cautiously.

#8 jhirsch

jhirsch

    Mariner 2

  • *****
  • Posts: 223
  • Joined: 06 Oct 2010
  • Loc: Ohio

Posted 15 November 2013 - 05:43 AM

Another vote for the Telrad. :waytogo:

#9 jeffpkamp

jeffpkamp

    Ranger 4

  • -----
  • Posts: 312
  • Joined: 11 Jan 2013

Posted 19 November 2013 - 07:03 PM

lol, I made green laser pointer mount for mine. Problem is that when its cold out, the normal AAA's can't put out the juice to power it, thus I now run it off of a car battery (with some extra wiring). Makes like super easy, no bending over upside down to look through the scope, Just look up.

That being said I do live near an airport, and I have yet to have cops come visit me for using my telescope :).

#10 panhard

panhard

    It's All Good

  • *****
  • Moderators
  • Posts: 13669
  • Joined: 20 Jan 2008
  • Loc: Markham Ontario Canada

Posted 19 November 2013 - 09:30 PM

The darker the skies the more useful the Telrad is.

#11 hamdul

hamdul

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 714
  • Joined: 23 Jun 2009
  • Loc: Litchfield NH, USA

Posted 19 November 2013 - 10:58 PM

This is a very personal opinion BUT (Isn't there always a BUT) from where I stand the red dot finer on the SE series are as useless as a wart. Most people rave about red dot finders but from my experience with the one I had I was very gun shy to get another. :confused: For years I had nothing but straight thru optical scopes and loved them but on the 8SE I found it almost impossible to use when pointing at Zenith, :bawling: so I got a Right angle scope. A little harder to use but a thousand time better than a RDF. :jump:

#12 berobertsmd

berobertsmd

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 180
  • Joined: 27 Sep 2009
  • Loc: Brandon, Mississippi

Posted 20 November 2013 - 08:32 PM

I have found several of the Telrad's features to be very useful. 1)The variable intensity allows you to adjust targeting rings for fainter objects. 2)I added the pulse module, so the targeting rings can also vary from continuous "on" to slow "pulse" which again helps with targeting. 3) I live in a dew prone area. I added the optional dew cover, which attaches with two screws already on the back of the Telrad. This cover can be left on all the time, swings into place when needed, and also serves to protect the sight reticle. There are "dew heaters" available for the Telrad, but a simple disposable hand warmer attached with a rubber band to the side of the Telrad will usually take care of any dew problems, with or without the dew cover. 5) There are a 2" and 4" riser available to raise the Telrad above the OTA allowing easier use of the unit for targets higher in elevation. I use the 2" riser with my NexStar 8SE. Battery life (2 X AA) is great as long as you remember to turn unit off at end of observing session.

#13 Sorny

Sorny

    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 781
  • Joined: 15 Mar 2012
  • Loc: Southern MN

Posted 20 November 2013 - 08:56 PM

Why would one use a finder on an SE scope after alignment? Why would one attempt to align something at zenith on an alt-az mount?

I use the red-dot for about 5 minutes a session and turn it off.

I've got a StarSense now, but that'll be permanently hooked up to the CPC, and the trusty red-dot will stay on the NexStar SE.

#14 core

core

    Surveyor 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 1506
  • Joined: 23 Feb 2008
  • Loc: Mostly in Norman, OK

Posted 20 November 2013 - 11:55 PM

Why would one use a finder on an SE scope after alignment? Why would one attempt to align something at zenith on an alt-az mount?

I use the red-dot for about 5 minutes a session and turn it off.


+1

When I got a 6SE a couple of years ago, first thing I thought was how useless the RDF was, and sold it within a week. I tried a Telrad and Rigel I had on hand, and finally got a dedicated Astro-Tech RDF when I finally came to my senses that all I ever used it for (on the SE mount) was to do the initial alignment, which was never near the zenith (bad for alt-az). In hindsight the original RDF would have chugged along nicely for its intended purpose. The one thing I do like about the AT (and similar) unit is that it holds alignment well even after repeated mount/dismount, and it does look 'better'.

#15 berobertsmd

berobertsmd

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 180
  • Joined: 27 Sep 2009
  • Loc: Brandon, Mississippi

Posted 21 November 2013 - 12:19 AM

I'm left eye dominant and find the Celestron red-dot finder difficult to visualize. I wonder if any other "sinister eyed" observers have noticed the same.
I use my view finder the entire session. I do my initial alignment, then will update ALIGN or SYNC episodically for better alignment.

#16 dpippel

dpippel

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1162
  • Joined: 05 Apr 2013
  • Loc: Desierto de Sonora

Posted 21 November 2013 - 09:18 AM

Why would one use a finder on an SE scope after alignment? Why would one attempt to align something at zenith on an alt-az mount?

I use the red-dot for about 5 minutes a session and turn it off.


Yep.

#17 jturie

jturie

    Vostok 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 130
  • Joined: 19 Nov 2012
  • Loc: Valley Forge, PA

Posted 21 November 2013 - 10:10 AM

Agree with the "5 minute" crowd. I just had the worst time getting the RDF aligned, so I hit my local dealer's used equipment table and snagged a cheap Rigel Quickfinder.

Still, 5 minutes and off...until I kick the dang mount in the dark and have to do it all over again.

#18 hamdul

hamdul

    Viking 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 714
  • Joined: 23 Jun 2009
  • Loc: Litchfield NH, USA

Posted 21 November 2013 - 10:11 AM

An addendum.....I never use a star at zenith for alignment, and maybe I should have said NEAR zenith..I'm talking about using a Go To search near zenith (Say 75=degrees) As you all know that's difficult to accomplish accurately so when I look thru the scope and the object is not there I like to use the finder to see where I'm at so I can nudge the scope to the target. If there are no bright star in the area I find the RDF useless for that purpose. I'll take a RA optical any day :bow:

Fred

#19 Fred Garvin

Fred Garvin

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 39
  • Joined: 08 Sep 2013
  • Loc: DFW Metroplex

Posted 21 November 2013 - 11:14 AM

The RDF on my 8SE would not align...nowhere near close. I couldn't even see the red dot unless the unit was cranked full over to both stops.

Took the OTA back to the scope store. They looked at it, took off the RDF and messed with it in the shop. Told me it was most certainly messed up and they would send it back to Celestron. They took a brand new one from another scope, installed it on mine, and sighted it in.

Works perfectly! Really easy to use and puts alignment stars nearly centered in a 25mm EP. Once the scope is aligned, the RDF is off. Another 5 minute user here.

#20 hawk

hawk

    Mariner 2

  • -----
  • Posts: 239
  • Joined: 12 Mar 2013

Posted 21 November 2013 - 08:57 PM

I'm left-eye dominant as well. You're right, I guess it would probably have been a little more convenient on the other side. That said, I never really thought about it too much; having to stoop over a bit to see through would happen even if it were on the other side, and that's the part I find more annoying. I'm another 5-minute user, though, so I'm not too bothered with it.

#21 Peter9

Peter9

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4758
  • Joined: 30 Oct 2008
  • Loc: Yorkshire - Born & Bred

Posted 22 November 2013 - 08:30 AM

I too found the RDF did the job it was intended for. I changed to a RACI finder because I had difficulty getting into so of the positions needed to use the RDF.
As to which eye to use, I use both. I use my right eye for bright targets such as the Moon, and my left eye, having retained its night adaptation, for DSOs etc.

Regards. Peter.

#22 Sarkikos

Sarkikos

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 17503
  • Joined: 18 Dec 2007
  • Loc: Per sylvam ad astra

Posted 22 November 2013 - 11:01 AM

Green Laser Pointer is the way to go. I can't understand why anyone uses anything else, unless you are near an airport or something. Once you get it aligned you only need to look up.


One good reason not to use a GLP is that they tend to die during cold weather. I've rigged GLPs to several of my small grab-n-go scopes. The GLPs work great, especially for little hand-held scopes or ones that you'd set on a table. But my experience is that if the temps get much below 40 degrees F, the GLP won't work. Great for warm temperature observation, though.

I see another poster mentioned that the GLPs die easily, due to the batteries. But I don't see hooking up a little grab-n-go scope to a car battery. Kind of defeats the purpose!

:grin:
Mike

#23 maugi88

maugi88

    Postasaurusrex

  • *****
  • Posts: 4040
  • Joined: 25 Aug 2013
  • Loc: SE MN

Posted 22 November 2013 - 02:01 PM

GLP are causing some problems with airplanes. According to Air and Space Jan 2014 issue, something like 7 a day. I imagine that not all of these incidents are malicious. Some are almost surely amateur astronomers simply using them for pointing and the aircraft flies into the lasers path. Great care needs to be taken when pointing a laser skyward.

#24 Sarkikos

Sarkikos

    Hubble

  • *****
  • Posts: 17503
  • Joined: 18 Dec 2007
  • Loc: Per sylvam ad astra

Posted 22 November 2013 - 02:28 PM

I take great care in everything I do.

:grin:
Mike

#25 ben2112

ben2112

    Cloud Magnet

  • *****
  • Posts: 1163
  • Joined: 12 Jul 2012
  • Loc: North Charleston SC

Posted 22 November 2013 - 06:20 PM

I can't use a GLP because I live to close to the airport/Air Force Base.






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics