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Equipment Discussions >> Equipment

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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Which equipment is "king"?
      #6125208 - 10/08/13 03:25 PM

The telescope? The eyepiece? The experience and eyesight of the user? The camera? The mount?

All good answers, but sadly all incorrect.

Fuel is king.

In these days of expanding light pollution and dwindling dark sky resources, the surest way to increase the performance of any telescope is to load it into a vehicle and drive to an observing site at least two darkness zones darker than your usual observing site.

For the price of an Ethos the average astronomer in North America could fund travel for a dozen or two dark sky trips, provided he or she doesn't mind camping out.

Save for targets that require resolution, going darker with what you have is very much like going bigger and staying put. If you observe under magnitude 4.5 skies as I do, going to Magnitude 6.5 skies makes an HUGE difference on what is seen. A 12" at home is given a run for its money by a mere 8" at such a dark sky site.

Perhaps it makes more sense to spend less and obtain a smaller telescope, and apply the savings to dark sky travel to extract the most out of that equipment?

- Jim


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Astrojensen
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Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Bornholm, Denmark
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6125255 - 10/08/13 03:46 PM

Sad, but true.


Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark


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csrlice12
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Astrojensen]
      #6125387 - 10/08/13 04:33 PM

I've always said the gas filter is the best piece of equipment I have.....

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Crow Haven
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 01/09/09

Loc: Oregon USA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #6125401 - 10/08/13 04:43 PM

This is always true! I will only add that having the larger aperture available every night at a less dark but permanent site has enabled a lot of great observing, out-manuvering the fickle weather deities which have a way of ruining planned dark sky trips. I love my Lumicon UHC & OIII filters!
---Maya


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Eddgie
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Crow Haven]
      #6125424 - 10/08/13 04:55 PM

Yes, this mirrors my own finding and something I have mentioned many times before.

Even in my Central Austin home, I did a lot of productive observing with my C14.

Using a 3mm or 4mm exit pupil helps keep the sky pretty dark, and I have observed hundreds and hundreds of objects from my back yard.

True, all of them look better under dark sky conditions. Not debating that.

But driving a 90 minutes out of the city to get to dark sky conditions is not something I want to do with the frequency I observe.

I can roll out and align my Go-to dob in less than 10 minutes and be observing before you can load a small mount, telescope, eyepiece cases, battery packs, and all of that other stuff you need.

I don't have to dig holes in the desert to use the bathroom. I can go right inside.

And sometimes, I like a little vodka with my stars, so no need to worry about warping while drinking.

I used to read that there was no point in having a big telescope un brighter sky conditions. It used to be common for retailers to say that in their brochures.

Thankfully, they no longer say that, and as I have said for so many years now, aperture is your friend.


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brianb11213
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6125435 - 10/08/13 04:58 PM

Quote:

Fuel is king.



Umm, yeah, ideally (to minimise observing time wastage) live at a good observing site & commute to shops / job.

You can save a great deal on fuel price by driving a sensible vehicle. It's not hard these days to find comfortable vehicles with reasonable load carrying capability & performance that will still deliver 60 mpg or more on long runs.


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Aquarist
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 08/27/12

Loc: Illinois
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: brianb11213]
      #6125456 - 10/08/13 05:09 PM

Well, for my wife and I, traveling to dark sites is infeasible. So we built an observatory in our backyard and we can be up and running in under 10 minutes. When the weather is good, we are good to observe. Of course, during the day, the sun is also a great target.

Still, in the long run we may also get a dob and wheel it out into the back on the patio (probably would not fit in the observatory) so we can increase aperture. Sure dark site viewing would be great . . . no argument there.


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csa/montana
Den Mama
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Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6125461 - 10/08/13 05:11 PM

Quote:

Fuel is king.




In my case, no. I'm quite content observing right here at home with SQM readings of averaging 21.50/21.70. I have no desire to observe elsewhere.


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bobhen
professor emeritus


Reged: 06/25/05

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csa/montana]
      #6125507 - 10/08/13 05:38 PM


For more and more people, the video camera (Mallincam, Stellcam 3, and others) are or will be king.

I live just outside Philadelphia, PA. It's impractical for me to travel to a decently dark sky. But my video camera allows me to not only continue to do deep sky observing (thank goodness) but to "see" objects and details that would require a huge telescope and very dark sky.

I think my situation will become the norm for a lot of astronomers in the future.

Bob


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faltered
professor emeritus


Reged: 04/01/05

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: bobhen]
      #6125553 - 10/08/13 06:02 PM

Interesting post. I agree with you. I really only enjoy this hobby from dark sky. Backyard viewing for me is getting really old, and not as enjoyable. I think sometimes I only do that to say I am still in the hobby and justify the equipment.

Nothing like dark sky. Its king. So yep, Fuel is king!


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GeneT
Ely Kid
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Reged: 11/07/08

Loc: South Texas
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6125592 - 10/08/13 06:20 PM

The ideal would be to live in a dark sky site. Next best would be to have an observatory and some simple living quarters at a dark sky site, and drive to it on weekends, and holidays. Most of the time I have to observe in Mag. 4.8-5.0 skies. Due to my schedule it is difficult to get to the really dark sites.

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Gastrol
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/04/11

Loc: los angeles
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: GeneT]
      #6125683 - 10/08/13 07:10 PM

Fuel, for both my vehicle and myself, and some essential sleeping gear.

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Widespread
professor emeritus


Reged: 05/11/11

Loc: Bowling Green, Kentucky
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Gastrol]
      #6125735 - 10/08/13 07:40 PM

For best views, Fuel is king. But for frequency of viewing, 'tis Convenience who wears the crown.

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Jon Isaacs
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Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csa/montana]
      #6125804 - 10/08/13 08:29 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Fuel is king.




In my case, no. I'm quite content observing right here at home with SQM readings of averaging 21.50/21.70. I have no desire to observe elsewhere.






Fuel is not king,fuel is cheap...

Time is king... time to observe...

Jon


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mountain monk
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 11/06/09

Loc: Grand Teton National Park
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #6125891 - 10/08/13 09:29 PM

Time to observe under dark skies.

Dark skies.

Jack


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blueman
Photon Catcher
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Reged: 07/20/07

Loc: California
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: mountain monk]
      #6125976 - 10/08/13 10:16 PM

Well, with the cost of my equipment, I will not quibble over a little gas. But I refuse to drive long distances to get a possible good night.

I am fortunate enough to have a private club site 56 miles from home that I go to each month. Not the absolute best, but overall a good situation.
Blueman


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Jon Isaacs
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: blueman]
      #6126008 - 10/08/13 10:33 PM

Quote:

Well, with the cost of my equipment, I will not quibble over a little gas. But I refuse to drive long distances to get a possible good night.

I am fortunate enough to have a private club site 56 miles from home that I go to each month. Not the absolute best, but overall a good situation.
Blueman




Floyd:

I am happy to drive long distances to locations with pristine dark skies.. But I am happy to make the journey regardless of whether the night sky warrants the trip.. The places themselves, the trip itself, these are sufficient.

My wife and I are fortunate to have 4 acres in the mountains with a small house and a good sized garage. It's 70 miles from home, the skies not the darkest but the Milky Way with it's branches into Ophiuchus blaze away overhead. It's a nice place to be even when the skies are not clear..

Jon


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BKBrown
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Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6126042 - 10/08/13 10:51 PM

Since the title of this thread is Which equipment is "king", and since I spend 90% of my astro time in my red sky backyard - I would say a CCD mono camera loaded up with narrowband filters. One can image under light polluted skies, be they man made or lunar induced, and still get stunning images of the night sky. And imaging will always show me more than I will ever see through the eyepiece, even at the darkest dark site with my equipment. I love visual astronomy, but my home location and steadily declining observing conditions drove me toward the decision to focus on lunar and planetary work, splitting doubles...and imaging. Good thing I really enjoy those options

Clear Skies,
Brian


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EFT
Vendor - Deep Space Products
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Reged: 05/07/07

Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6126163 - 10/09/13 12:05 AM

Thus the growing popularity of remote observatories for imagers. Arizona and New Mexico are hot spots for these but I recently read about one in the western foothills of the Sierras and wow were those lots expensive. For imagers, remote observatories and the equipment to operate them may become the king.

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csrlice12
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Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csa/montana]
      #6126516 - 10/09/13 08:29 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Fuel is king.




In my case, no. I'm quite content observing right here at home with SQM readings of averaging 21.50/21.70. I have no desire to observe elsewhere.




But we gotta get to your place somehow...look at those SQM readings!!


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hfjacinto
I think he's got it!
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Reged: 01/12/09

Loc: Land of clouds and LP
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #6126828 - 10/09/13 11:39 AM

Having all the fuel in the world wont make a difference without clear skies.

Clear Skies rule all, I can still observe from my light polluted area when its clear with out fuel.


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csrlice12
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Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: hfjacinto]
      #6126886 - 10/09/13 12:20 PM

except clear skies isn't "equipment"...like the stars, it just is.....

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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Eddgie]
      #6126927 - 10/09/13 12:51 PM

"I used to read that there was no point in having a big telescope under brighter sky conditions."

I agree with you Ed. That makes zero sense. Aperture is the *only* real foil for light pollution if you're going to observe through light pollution. You'll see a lot more through a 14" scope than an 8" scope under suburban skies (or dark skies for that matter). But it's easier to get an 8" scope out to darker skies, and if the limiting magnitude delta between home and the boonies is large enough, you might go deeper in an 8" under dark skies than in a 14" at home. And the 8" is a lot cheaper and easier to mount, too.

So for an observer that doesn't mind burning some dinosaur butter to get out to darker skies, he or she might be able to finance that travel by opting for a smaller aperture, lighter mount, and larger petrol budget.

Regards,

Jim


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: bobhen]
      #6126968 - 10/09/13 01:09 PM

I have my doubts. I think for most visual astronomers, observation is akin to meditation. It represents a complete divergence from daily life. Lugging cameras and power and computers out to observe would totally kill the peacefulness experience for many of us. Those that already lug a laptop out to the field, though, are probably ripe for video.

Regards,

Jim


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csrlice12
Postmaster
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6127155 - 10/09/13 02:32 PM

Agree about using my scope to "get away from it all"...besides, I've got enough to load up for a trip to the dark site; the dob takes up the back seat, the base the front passenger seat, (and if I take the XLT too, the mount/tripod lays on the floor of the car with the OTA in the trunk; then theres the accessory case, and the eyepiece case, and the other eyepiece case, and the even other eyepiece case, plus the chair, jackets, etc.....I wouldn't have room for AP equipment even if I wanted........

Actually, I usually don't take it all, usually just the dob, the accessory case (paracorr, controller, batteries, etc...) and one eyepiece case (whatever I chose for the night). Last week I was out during the week and the only eyepieces I used outside of the plossl to align the finder, were the 20mm and 14mm ES 100s.

For some of us, petrol $ are not an option, it's a requirement....


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Lorence
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/15/08

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: bobhen]
      #6127393 - 10/09/13 04:35 PM

Quote:


For more and more people, the video camera (Mallincam, Stellcam 3, and others) are or will be king.

I live just outside Philadelphia, PA. It's impractical for me to travel to a decently dark sky. But my video camera allows me to not only continue to do deep sky observing (thank goodness) but to "see" objects and details that would require a huge telescope and very dark sky.

I think my situation will become the norm for a lot of astronomers in the future.

Bob




Absolutely. I have the luxury of a dark sky site and will take the camera views anytime. Don't forget you can still observe deep sky during a full Moon.

Don't have to take my word for it. Check out the Night Skies Network.

http://www.nightskiesnetwork.com/

No need for long drives or one of those monstrous Dobstrosities. Invest your money in a Mallincam. It will be the best return on your investments you have ever made.

Think about all the years people have spent trying to recapture the excitement they experienced when they first started observing. I get that experience almost every time I observe.


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RAKing
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Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Widespread]
      #6127525 - 10/09/13 05:46 PM

Quote:

For best views, Fuel is king. But for frequency of viewing, 'tis Convenience who wears the crown.




+1

I won't argue the "Dark Skies Rule" idea, but I am happy anytime I can get outside under a clear, reasonably dark sky. I cannot handle the bigger apertures and as much as the Mallicam idea might be in my future, I still hate the thought of hauling a computer outside with me. I work with them all day - I don't want to play with them all night.

There is still plenty out there I haven't seen yet and I still treasure the time I get to spend under the stars - just check my tag line.

Ron


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iluxo
sage


Reged: 09/23/08

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6127684 - 10/09/13 07:08 PM

Quote:

Perhaps it makes more sense to ...


Move to a country that still has dark skies (like Australia), and retire to a nice town in the country far from a big city.

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DavidNealMinnick
sage
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Reged: 03/06/06

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: iluxo]
      #6127691 - 10/09/13 07:14 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Perhaps it makes more sense to ...


Move to a country that still has dark skies (like Australia), and retire to a nice town in the country far from a big city.




If they'd let me bring my guns, too, I'd sure consider it!


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killdabuddha
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 08/26/11

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: RAKing]
      #6127695 - 10/09/13 07:16 PM

Well, having recently spent $800 on dinosaur butter, it's maybe interesting that I haven't had to resist any urge to ask, "Gee, what could we have bought with that instead?" But that's only because my wife had the time of her life. Now she's asking about the annual star party in the Keys...and for that, maybe I can convince her that a traveling refractor is just what we need to save me from driving and burning butter.

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City Kid
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 05/06/09

Loc: Northern Indiana
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6127714 - 10/09/13 07:29 PM

Quote:

Fuel is king.

In these days of expanding light pollution and dwindling dark sky resources, the surest way to increase the performance of any telescope is to load it into a vehicle and drive to an observing site at least two darkness zones darker than your usual observing site.

For the price of an Ethos the average astronomer in North America could fund travel for a dozen or two dark sky trips, provided he or she doesn't mind camping out.




No argument here, I totally agree. However if fuel is king then for me vacation time from work is queen. I have equipment that I can get to a dark site and I have the money for the gas it takes to get there. What I don't have is enough time off from work to take advantage of it.


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Mirzam
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Reged: 04/01/08

Loc: Lovettsville, VA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: killdabuddha]
      #6127717 - 10/09/13 07:31 PM Attachment (8 downloads)

I sometimes (frequently) use fuel to get to dark skies. But a good lunar planetary scope does not require such excursions.

JimC


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brianb11213
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Reged: 02/25/09

Loc: 55.215N 6.554W
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6127735 - 10/09/13 07:42 PM

Quote:

a good lunar planetary scope does not require such excursions.



But you're just trading the necessity of dark sky for the necessity of steady air. As a first approximation you want no built structures, roads etc. for several miles in the arc from south east to south west (in the northern hemisphere). Nor any exposed rock in the same arc. And no steep slopes anywhere in the vicinity.

The jet stream moves around but some regions are much more likely to be affected by jet stream smearing than others.

In fact the requirements for a good solar / lunar / planetary site are probably rather harder to meet than those for deep sky. And, if you find a site which has both dark skies and good seeing, it's probably already occupied by a professional observatory.


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: killdabuddha]
      #6127807 - 10/09/13 08:20 PM

Bravo, Doug!

That was the best $800 in dino-grease you ever burned.

If you guys want a 'frac, let me know how big and what design. I may have something lying around collecting dust motes rather than photons.

Doug and his wife and seven others collectively burned up two T-rexes, an Apatosuar and an unknown number of Dimetrodons in order to join me in conclave in a haunted canyon in northwest New Mexico for a week. That's kind of what got me off on this train of thought, in fact.

- Jim


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Mirzam
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: brianb11213]
      #6127810 - 10/09/13 08:21 PM

We know the Jet Stream well where I live, and indeed, there are only a handful of really good nights each year when the seeing is excellent. But the perfect dark sky nights are equally illusive. There is dew, haze, pollution, moonlight, all of which combine to make perfection rarely attainable. So I don't accept that seeing conditions are more of a limitation for Lunar and planetary viewing than other limatations are for deep sky viewing.

JimC


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esd726
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 09/30/04

Loc: Rochester, IN
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csa/montana]
      #6127934 - 10/09/13 09:35 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Fuel is king.




In my case, no. I'm quite content observing right here at home with SQM readings of averaging 21.50/21.70. I have no desire to observe elsewhere.



As much as it would be interesting to see REALLY dark skies, mine here are just fine. I barely seem to have enough time to observe here , let alone the thought (and $) of loading up and driving somewhere to try to do it

Edited by esd726 (10/09/13 09:37 PM)


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BKBrown
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Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Mirzam]
      #6128569 - 10/10/13 09:02 AM

Quote:

We know the Jet Stream well where I live, and indeed, there are only a handful of really good nights each year when the seeing is excellent. But the perfect dark sky nights are equally illusive. There is dew, haze, pollution, moonlight, all of which combine to make perfection rarely attainable. So I don't accept that seeing conditions are more of a limitation for Lunar and planetary viewing than other limatations are for deep sky viewing.

JimC




I concur with this completely. I do virtually all of my imaging from my red sky suburban back yard and get terrific results with modern lunar and planetary imaging gear. The 100+ frame-per-second rates often can beat down less-than-ideal seeing conditions on all but the worst nights to bring home decent, and often superb, lunar and planetary images. My recent forays into deep sky imaging also supports this, and narrow band imaging can only improve my options in the red zone. Yes we would all love to have pristine, dead calm dark sky over our heads but real life makes this tough to come by for most of us. So you learn how to deal with what you've got and appreciate the opportunities to be under better skies when you can...

Clear Skies,
Brian


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obin robinson
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/25/12

Loc: League City, TX
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6128709 - 10/10/13 10:11 AM

What equipment is king? The lathe and the mill. With one of each you are only limited by your imagination and skill.

obin


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Pinbout
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Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: obin robinson]
      #6128844 - 10/10/13 11:11 AM

Quote:

What equipment is king? The lathe and the mill. With one of each you are only limited by your imagination and skill.

obin




fuel - tools to make things. I think for this question those answers are like taking the derivative to prime [x'] where the answer should only be x.

cause if you want to go prime the most valuable equip are my eyes = x' for such a visual hobby.


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csrlice12
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Pinbout]
      #6128932 - 10/10/13 11:57 AM

Clouds must be the Joker then.....

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obin robinson
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/25/12

Loc: League City, TX
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Pinbout]
      #6128954 - 10/10/13 12:08 PM

Quote:


fuel - tools to make things. I think for this question those answers are like taking the derivative to prime [x'] where the answer should only be x.

cause if you want to go prime the most valuable equip are my eyes = x' for such a visual hobby.




If I lived in a perpetually cloudy area I'd build a radio telescope. I actually thought about making one as they seem to be sort of fun to construct. You know what I'd need to build the mount for a radio telescope? A lathe and a mill.

obin


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De Lorme
professor emeritus
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Reged: 12/30/08

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: obin robinson]
      #6129108 - 10/10/13 01:28 PM

Filters than Aperture are King to me. Check out the CA
Reduction Review by Russell23. The Baaders Longpass filter
is working wonders and it's cheap compared to most.
Space Dragon bought the Moon and Sky{to my understanding} to couple it to the Longpass hoping to take out the yellow
on the Moon. I ordered one to. Looking at the Moon {close to the horizon} with the Longpass it made the craters and mountain ranges much more distinctive. There was yellow of course but to me it wasn't bad. The trade off was easily worth the much better contrast and sharpness.
Hopefully the Moon and Sky Glow with the Longpass will
take out the yellow. Will find out soon; I cannot wait!
De Lorme


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: obin robinson]
      #6129111 - 10/10/13 01:29 PM

And, of course, availability of materials.

- Jim


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: obin robinson]
      #6129114 - 10/10/13 01:31 PM

If I lived in a perpetually cloudy area I'd move.

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Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6129139 - 10/10/13 01:44 PM

Quote:

If I lived in a perpetually cloudy area I'd move.




If I lived in a perpetually cloudy area, I probably never would have taken up stargazing.

"Things turn out the best for people who make the best of how things turn out." (John Wooden)

Jon


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Lorence
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/15/08

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: DavidNealMinnick]
      #6129316 - 10/10/13 03:12 PM

Quote:

If they'd let me bring my guns, too, I'd sure consider it!




Nothing better than a hail of bullets to blast a hole through the clouds. Armature Astronomy?


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David Castillo
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/09/06

Loc: Carmel Valley, Ca
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Lorence]
      #6129617 - 10/10/13 06:06 PM

Kneel before the king; no eyepiece, mount or massive aperture can equal His power.A vast majority of the King's loyal sheep-like subjects depend on the "light" from his glowing, protective fires to sleep securely at night. Loyalists use his power to fend off fearsome hoards of nightly attackers with street lights as shields, and porch lights as swords. The King's hydrocarbon fueled arcade of light is a blessing for some, but a curse to others. The King has dominated us all and enslaved us geographically. His power has financially shackled us all. I am forced to wait on the banquet hall floor for any morsels that fall off the table.
-----
Dave


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Pinbout
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 02/22/10

Loc: nj
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6129707 - 10/10/13 07:05 PM

Quote:

And, of course, availability of materials.

- Jim




That would be x''


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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Pinbout]
      #6129786 - 10/10/13 08:04 PM

The spouse....

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Lorence
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 09/15/08

Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: David Castillo]
      #6131193 - 10/11/13 01:45 PM

Quote:

The King has dominated us all and enslaved us geographically. His power has financially shackled us all. I am forced to wait on the banquet hall floor for any morsels that fall off the table.
Dave




Perfect example of the "Golden Rule." Thems with the gold makes the rules.


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kkokkolis
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/23/09

Loc: Piraeus, Greece
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Lorence]
      #6131326 - 10/11/13 02:57 PM

A Swiss Army Knife or Swisstool is the only equipment King I recognize.

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barasits
sage


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Chicago
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #6131469 - 10/11/13 04:01 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Fuel is king.




In my case, no. I'm quite content observing right here at home with SQM readings of averaging 21.50/21.70. I have no desire to observe elsewhere.






Fuel is not king,fuel is cheap...

Time is king... time to observe...

Jon






I live under heavily light polluted skies, but driving to darker locations is out of the question because I can't afford the time and I'm trying my level best to minimize my carbon footprint. Time is priceless, and the real cost of gasoline is not measured by what you pay at the pump.

Geoff


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starrancher
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 06/09/09

Loc: Northern Arizona
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: barasits]
      #6133471 - 10/12/13 05:28 PM

A 40 acre patch of Juniper/Pinion at a mile high in the arid climate of Northern Arizona is King !
Bortle One skies . Or some might call it the Black Zone .
Bullets welcome and the carbon footprint is next to nil .
Just look at that CSC !


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: starrancher]
      #6133499 - 10/12/13 05:49 PM

"...and the carbon footprint is next to nil"

Until I drive my truck on it, then that footprint gets measured in "carbon acreage".



- Jim


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barasits
sage


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Chicago
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6133901 - 10/12/13 09:25 PM

5.7L Hemi V8? Jim, you need some carbon offsets to go with it!

http://www.green-e.org/getcert_ghg_products.shtml

Geoff


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: barasits]
      #6134697 - 10/13/13 10:29 AM

Nah, I was figuring that I could put solar on the pergola in the back yard and then get one of those bumper stickers that says "My other wheel chocks are Toyota Priuses", and still keep my Sierra Club buddies appeased. To be fair, though, my other (commuter) car is a PZEV rated Subaru, and I've owned a couple of hybrids in the last decade, and...and...and...it's a HEMI! (8 speed 4x4 no less.)

- Jim


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izar187
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 09/02/06

Loc: 43N
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6136135 - 10/14/13 12:12 AM

Which equipment is king rightly varies from person to person.

I moved years ago from within urban sky glow, specifically to it's south side perimeter.
This yielded significantly better options for observing DSO's crossing the meridian.
Development has expanded in my area certainly, as it has in most places, so I have to go farther afield.
But still less far than if I lived north, east or west.
I chose to go south, because I telescope.
And chose to stay south once more, when I moved again.

Regarding time... well, I take the time to observe from the rest of life.
If you want to go fishing, then you have to go fishing. Same for golf.
I do not live beside water, nor next to a green, nor out under dark sky.
But I live within reach of something darker sky, where I can get better dark adapted.

It is convenient to go there because I am always loaded up and ready to go, with one scope or another.
For me, mobility is pretty much my main king thing regarding gear.
I have chosen to drive four cylinders for decades, so fuel has never been much of an issue.

An honorable mention equipment issue for me, is comfort while observing.
In my case, all my scopes are set up so that I can stand, without stooping when looking through the focuser.
I can sit too, whenever I want, or lean against the back of my chair.
But the option to stand, comfortably at the eyepiece is a biggie, for me.


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FirstSight
Duke of Deneb
*****

Reged: 12/26/05

Loc: Raleigh, NC
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: izar187]
      #6136482 - 10/14/13 09:14 AM

I must protest that this thread is hopelessly sexist until we balance it with the question:

"What equipment is QUEEN"?


Queen Elizabeth I was the match of any king...



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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: FirstSight]
      #6136906 - 10/14/13 12:52 PM

Queen Elizabeth I was a man.



- Jim


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nytecam
Postmaster


Reged: 08/20/05

Loc: London UK
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #6137563 - 10/14/13 05:51 PM

I live in the city and refuse to travel to observe - my camera is king from my backyard - it vastly outperforms the eye almost irrespective of aperture or location so I'm in heaven

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groz
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 03/14/07

Loc: Campbell River, BC
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: nytecam]
      #6139080 - 10/15/13 01:35 PM

My wife recently got a new job, which entailed moving. The move took us to an area with relatively dark skies compared to what we used to have. We bought a small acerage just out of town, and now live under a bortle 3 sky. It's not as black as some, but, better than most, and as good as we have seen a numerous 'dark sky' astronomy events that were many hours of driving away.

Our view of astronomy has suddenly changed. It used to be we considered it a hobby that included camping etc etc. Now we are planning the roll-off in the back yard, and, no longer have plans to make long drives to attend events for astronomy, altho we may occaisionally head out to an event for the social aspect. the 'big gun' telescopes will stay in the observatory if we go, and we'll just take the little stuff because it's easy to carry and set up.

This is our back yard now, taken on Oct 8 of this year.

http://youtu.be/X6NAcNfrs1U

Location is king, and now that we have a permanent location with a dark sky, our whole view of the hobby has changed.


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: groz]
      #6140888 - 10/16/13 01:07 PM

Nice whole-sky video!

I assume those bright flashes illuminating the trees that get less frequent during the later hours are passing car headlights on a nearby road?

I'd say those skies make staying home quite sensible. The observatory will shield you from any local light, including the occasional passing vehicle.

Permanent relocation to darker skies, though, isn't feasible for most observers, and imagine all of the fuel you used to accomplish the move?

- Jim


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Bruce FitzGerald
sage


Reged: 09/17/10

Loc: Arizona
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6146384 - 10/19/13 10:41 AM

Fuel is king?
Nope! Retire and move to a dark sky site in the middle of a mountainous desert. No light pollution, no camping, no travel, no problem!


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starrancher
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 06/09/09

Loc: Northern Arizona
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Bruce FitzGerald]
      #6146727 - 10/19/13 01:42 PM

Quote:

Fuel is king?
Nope! Retire and move to a dark sky site in the middle of a mountainous desert. No light pollution, no camping, no travel, no problem!




That's what I'm talkin about .


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Pinbout
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 02/22/10

Loc: nj
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Bruce FitzGerald]
      #6146760 - 10/19/13 02:02 PM

Quote:

Fuel is king?
Nope! Retire and move to a dark sky site in the middle of a mountainous desert. No light pollution, no camping, no travel, no problem!






and no wife...


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Pete-LH
sage
*****

Reged: 03/25/09

Loc: Wilmington, DE
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #6146845 - 10/19/13 02:54 PM

In review of all the equipment I have accumulated I would say the most useful has been my observing chair.

That being said I do like doing most of my observing from my back patio even with the neighbors lights of paranoia and living 30 minutes south of Philadelphia. I can still set up strategically and achieve my moments of Zen quite nicely there and have that beverage of choice while watching. Having the facilities nearby as well is a big plus.

I will drive once in a while when I have time but it's more to check out the friends toys and socialize.

Edited by Pete-LH (10/21/13 05:05 PM)


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carlcat
sage
*****

Reged: 11/26/07

Loc: Northern California
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Pete-LH]
      #6148537 - 10/20/13 02:50 PM

For me, it's a toss up between dual axis drives and a good astronomy chair. I can't imagine how others do without them. I love looking at the moon, sitting in my chair in back of a refractor, tooling around under high power, gliding over the surface of the moon like I'm in some kind of lunar module......all while in the confines of my back yard. There's so much to see on the moon and I'm so comfortable in my chair that I almost go into a trance observing. It really takes me to another place on so many levels......it's invigorating and relaxing at the same time.
And thanks, Jim B. for all the individual advice you've given me over the years......much appreciated.


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Bruce FitzGerald
sage


Reged: 09/17/10

Loc: Arizona
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Pinbout]
      #6149865 - 10/21/13 01:05 PM

What do you mean, no wife? I fired mine ten years ago....but my girlfriend likes the mountains and beautiful downtown Tucson is 40 minutes away (if you drive like she does)!

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bhpnbr
member
*****

Reged: 04/11/12

Loc: DFW, Texas
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Bruce FitzGerald]
      #6149893 - 10/21/13 01:28 PM

IMHO, a good SAFE observing site is King! It could be your own fenced backyard or a dark sky site a hundred miles away, or the neighbourhood park or parking lot because you live in an apartment.
Considering the essentially nocturnal nature of this hobby, and the unfortunate coincidence with times of heightened criminal activity, having peace of mind that you are safe with your expensive equipment is King.


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Aquarist
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 08/27/12

Loc: Illinois
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: groz]
      #6152342 - 10/22/13 07:45 PM

Quote:

My wife recently got a new job, which entailed moving. The move took us to an area with relatively dark skies compared to what we used to have. We bought a small acerage just out of town, and now live under a bortle 3 sky. It's not as black as some, but, better than most, and as good as we have seen a numerous 'dark sky' astronomy events that were many hours of driving away.

Our view of astronomy has suddenly changed. It used to be we considered it a hobby that included camping etc etc. Now we are planning the roll-off in the back yard, and, no longer have plans to make long drives to attend events for astronomy, altho we may occaisionally head out to an event for the social aspect. the 'big gun' telescopes will stay in the observatory if we go, and we'll just take the little stuff because it's easy to carry and set up.

This is our back yard now, taken on Oct 8 of this year.

http://youtu.be/X6NAcNfrs1U

Location is king, and now that we have a permanent location with a dark sky, our whole view of the hobby has changed.




Wow!


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Mirzam
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/01/08

Loc: Lovettsville, VA
Re: Which equipment is "king"? new [Re: Aquarist]
      #6154256 - 10/23/13 07:11 PM

I think we have a winner!

JimC


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