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General Astronomy >> Beginners Forum

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kenrenard
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Dunmore, PA
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5681383 - 02/15/13 12:44 PM

Donna,
Some other advice would be to make sure your scope is properly cooled.

Also here is a link to a bunch of information Dave Mitsky has put together. It may be a bit overwhelming at first but he has included so much you will find many answers in this post.

http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/5631845/page...

Ken


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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5681411 - 02/15/13 12:53 PM

I also highly recommend Vic's new book available from Catseye for $16. A better book on collimation isn't out there...this is a very understandable and easy to read booklet. It'll be the cheapest and most important non-eyepiece piece of astro equipment you can buy.

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Dennis_S253
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/22/11

Loc: West Central Florida
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5681414 - 02/15/13 12:54 PM

Hello and welcome to CN. I'm still wondering why you can't get the 2" to focus? What were you trying to view? What is happening with the focuser? Does it not go in far enough or out far enough?

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lamplight
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/18/12

Loc: western MA, U.S.
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: AstroBaby]
      #5681614 - 02/15/13 02:12 PM

Quote:

and what band lamplight?



Drive by Truckers, I'm a huge fan.


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drober23
journeyman


Reged: 02/01/13

Loc: Carleton, MI
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5681616 - 02/15/13 02:12 PM

Oddly enough, there is a good primer on collimation at:

http://www.astro-baby.com/

Welcome!


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Achernar
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: Mobile, Alabama, USA
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: AstroBaby]
      #5681625 - 02/15/13 02:15 PM

Welcome to Cloudy Nights Donna! It sounds like the trouble with the 2-inch eyepiece stems from the focuser not being able to rack in or out far enough to focus it. That is a problem that sometimes affects a Dob because there's often two inches of travel at most. If you can't rack out far enough to focus it, an extension tube will cure the problem. If it's the reverse, you'll have to shorten the trusses to get it to focus, which when I was finishing my 15-inch I had to go to get any of my eyepieces to focus. I wouldn't do that until you try the fix that you've found online. Hopefully tweaking the setscrew will eliminate the need for either course of action. If it's still a no-go, there's plenty of other 2-inch barrel eyepieces that will reach focus, and probably be much better than the stock eyepiece. For now, the ones that came with the telescope will get you started, and later you can peruse the eyepiece forums and try different eyepieces in person at starparties before buying additional eyepieces.

From a dark site, you will start seeing spiral arms and other features in galaxies through a 12-inch. There's places within two hours of you that are so dark you can see the zodiacal light with ease, and the Milky Way looks like a photo. A good 12-inch shows more objects than most people will ever get to see in a lifetime, most will be faint but there will be a good many that are impressive through a 12-inch. Right now there's a lot of spring galaxies in view for you to try your telescope on.

But for now, try it out on the moon, Jupiter and anything else you can find. If you don't already have an observing chair, red LED flashlight and some sort of star atlas, you will want to get them next. Before you can get good views, the optics will have to stop heating the air around them, so you'll need a hour or longer for the mirror to adjust to the ambient temperature. Sometimes the seeing here is just plain awful, if you cannot get sharp stars on some nights and they snap into pinpricks during other nights, you have bad seeing. Also, if you don't have a shroud for the truss poles, I would either sew one from black fabric or buy one. It keeps stray light out and slows down or prevents dewing of the main optics. I live across the bay from you, and almost every night it's a battle to keep the dew off the optics. I use heater strips, a controller, a shroud and a hefty 12-volt battery to keep the optics clear. There's also two local clubs near you, one in Mobile, and another one in Pensacola.

Most of all, take your time and have fun. Astronomy is like fishing, the point is to have fun and enjoy the stars, and the company of family or friends. Congratulations on your new telescope.

Taras


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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: Achernar]
      #5681643 - 02/15/13 02:22 PM

I've also left the barrel of the eyepiece out of the focuser a bit and that has helped (acts like Baader "rings"), but be careful it doesn't fall out.

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5682387 - 02/15/13 09:24 PM

Ok this is what I have:
20x80 Meade Binoculars on a heavy duty tripod

Sky=Watcher 8" collapsible Dob
with stock 1.25 10 & 25mm super Plossl
2x Celestron Barlow
variable moon filter

Lightbridge 12" Dob
26mm Series 4000 QX (stock)EP
Filters:
Sky-Glo, UHC, O-III, Variable Polarizing
HoTech SCA 2" Collimator
Telrad
9x50 RACI Finder scope
Farpoint counterweight set & primary spring upgrade
Astrozap Light Shroud
Explore Scientific 100 degree 20mm EP
Jims Mobil counterweight set
Bobs Knobs secondary collimation knob set

Tonight I found M41 and another nebula close to Alnitak in Orion but I don't know which one it is! Still cool though.
Collimation only took like 2 seconds! And I am in love with the Telrad! That thing is sooo cool! Anyway any advice on what else I need to get?


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BigC
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/29/10

Loc: SE Indiana
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: AstroBaby]
      #5682415 - 02/15/13 09:44 PM

YOU are obviously an extreme beginner,...an EXTREMELY well-equipped and knowledgeable beginner!!

Did I miss seeing a good star atlas?

Download stellarium.

Consider Sky Atlas 2000,field edition with laminated pages for damp resistance, if you want a non-electronic atlas.

And an observing chair.

A table for "stuff" Maybe a large shallow plastic bin with snap-on lid so stuff does't roll off the table(or get dewed)


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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: BigC]
      #5682431 - 02/15/13 09:52 PM

Wow thanks! And yes I love Stellarium! It is the best so far. I have downloaded others but I always go back to Stellarium. And we picked up a small black table today along with a red lantern and an equipment mat. I don't have an atlas yet but I'm working on it. We do use Skyeye on the droid phones but Stellarium is still better! Oh and I do need a chair for the 8" but for the 12 it's all good!(I'm 4'3")


Edited by AstroBaby (02/15/13 09:59 PM)


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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: woolbrig]
      #5682447 - 02/15/13 10:04 PM

Awesome!! How did you like it?

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5682460 - 02/15/13 10:11 PM

Oh and we figured out the problem with focusing the 2" eyepiece. Embarrassed to say that the extention tube was NOT needed and in fact caused the problem to begin with. Like I said we are learning. But thanks so much for the help and advice!

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WaterMasterAdministrator
Moat Keeper
*****

Reged: 02/17/10

Loc: Southeast Idaho, USA
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: AstroBaby]
      #5682510 - 02/15/13 10:44 PM

+1 on an observing chair. Even if you can use a scope comfortably while standing, a chair allows you to view for a much longer period of time in comfort. That extended viewing is really necessary for seeing details in DSO's and planets. In fact, for planetary viewing I would go so far as to say a chair is an absolute necessity as often seeing allows a few moments of clarity interspersed with long periods of lack of detail.

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: WaterMaster]
      #5682547 - 02/15/13 11:06 PM

Well ok then I guess I do need a chair. Didn't think about extended periods of viewing. Right now I'm not really getting a lot of time,either because of weather or early mornings where hubby has to bring the scope in so he can get some sleep for work. I need a cart or something so I can move it by myself.

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5682554 - 02/15/13 11:10 PM

Yes cooling has been a worry down here in the oh so humid & sweltering south. I was so glad the Lightbridge came with a fan but still we will be getting some sort of dew control.

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: kenrenard]
      #5682560 - 02/15/13 11:13 PM

And holy *BLEEP*! Thats alot of info! But thanks! It's what I need.

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: Dennis_S253]
      #5682568 - 02/15/13 11:16 PM

Our lack of knowledge was the problem. We put the extender in when it wasn't needed! All is well now.

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WaterMasterAdministrator
Moat Keeper
*****

Reged: 02/17/10

Loc: Southeast Idaho, USA
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: AstroBaby]
      #5682570 - 02/15/13 11:16 PM

There are lots of options for short-distance transport of your dob. Probably the easiest is a simple hand truck with a little padding and a strap to hold the scope. Keep in mind that if you have to roll it over uneven ground you can end up jostling the dob and knocking it out of collimation (but usually not enough so that it can't be tweaked easily). Large, pneumatic tires help if you're dealing with uneven ground.

There are other options like ScopeBuggy that are three-wheeled carts you just leave the scope on all the time - but I don't know if ScopeBuggy makes one for dogs.


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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner new [Re: drober23]
      #5682572 - 02/15/13 11:17 PM

*BLEEP* That's awesome!

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AstroBaby
member


Reged: 02/11/13

Loc: Fairhope, Al
Re: Greetings from an extreme beginner [Re: lamplight]
      #5682584 - 02/15/13 11:23 PM

Yes they are good. Enjoy!

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