Oh I fully plan to keep at it I have a nice green laser I've been toying with attaching for use as a finder - may make that happen sooner rather than later now
A little off-topic for this thread but I did a little binoc maintenance last night. We have two pairs, a pair of Bushnell's that I can't remember the specs on off hand but they give a nice clear sharp image with moderate magnification. And my wife's pair of Steiner 10x50's that she inherited from her mother. I've always been partial to the Bushnell's because they're lighter and I'm not a fan of the fixed focus on the Steiners - they've never given me as sharp of an image as I'd expect given the reputation of their optics. But that aperture has been calling to me so I took a closer look at them last night.
First thing that shocked me was realizing that for the price of those Steiners I could get 2 OneSky's and still have over $100 left for accessories Then I took a look at why I didn't like them very much. Their optics were filthy, the left eyepiece was missing it's eyecup...and the diopter adjuster on the left eyepiece was off the chart. Well, I've been into photography for over 20 years so I have no shortage of lens paper, lens brushes and microfiber cloths - 10 minutes of care and the optics look like new again. Quick google search showed me that a pair of new eyecups are still available for about $30....will have to get some on order - the one that isn't missing is cracked and getting ready to fall apart. Decoded the serial number and determined they're from 1997 so the new style eyecups are what I need, but they talk about the cups mounting with a threaded ring and I saw no sign of this ring. But upon closer inspection it turns out they are there just totally gummed up. Ah ha. And once you remove the ring the diopter adjuster ring comes off and can be re-positioned. That explains why the left one was off the scale.
Got the left diopter adjuster recentered correctly, took them out and dialed them in on a light pole a block away...let's take a look at the sky. Oh...clouds.
Lots of clouds. Lots and lots of clouds. Well, there's a small gap between them to the east, don't see any stars but let's take a look with the binocs anyway.
And boom - right there perfectly centered and filling my view was my friend the Pleiades again The view wasn't as spectacular as through the OneSky - but was by far the best view through binocs I've ever experienced.
Guess all they needed was a little TLC. Now if I could just find a way to get the smell of stale cigarette smoke off of them, her mom was a heavy smoker. When she first brought the binocs home I wouldn't even let them in the house they stank so bad. After a gentle scrubbing and sitting outside for two days they were allowed into the house...but putting them to my face the smell is still really noticeable.
Fingers crossed that the clouds stay away tonight...I'll have a better chance to view from the front yard where I've got better northern exposure and Andromeda is still calling me!