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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
First Light TEC 140 new
      #5706335 - 02/28/13 10:28 PM Attachment (122 downloads)

Well after a long wait, the TEC 140 finally arrived, expecting a December delivery, my thoughts of missing some good winter targets were starting to worry me. After setting up the scope on my TAK EM-200 I had mounted what will be my guiding scope a ST-80. It has the bracket that I will use to put the finder scope on for now so it was basically my finderscope bracket and that was it. I must say I do like the rings that TEC makes, it is easy to lock the scope in place and when balancing I just open one ring make sure it is still latched, then open the other and make sure it is latched then just slide it to where it needs to be. The guide scope and finder stay centered on the mount so I was able to get a nice balance to wherever I put it. Of course tonight was not about photos just to take in a few classic targets and get back to knowing my mount being I have been scopeless for 5 plus months. Having problems connecting my computer to the scope via Sky X I decided to just find stuff manually for a bit then go back to fixing the problem. I polar aligned the mount, which is a breeze with the best polar scope out there. I then moved the mount to Jupiter. The rings running around Jupiter were as if looking at a HD 1080 TV, the moons all on one side of Jupiter. I was using my Ethos 13 which would be a 75x view which is a wide field dream. So while looking out the shuttle window I decided to try my new Pentax XW 3.5. Being it was early the view was pretty mushy plus it is 306x view. So I put the Nagler 7 in and I can tell this will be heavily used EP. At a about perfect 140x view this will get so eye time along with my still favorite Ethos 13. So now it is time to try and get the computer connected to the mount. After Googling the problem I realize I need to boot my Mac into 32 bit mode, so I reboot, and reconnect and we have lift off. Thank goodness I am working these bugs out before I start getting out away from home for the AP sessions. I then sync to Betelguise and then slew the mount to M42. I must say the nebula has never looked so smokey, it even had a greenish tint to it. I had never seen that before in my TV 101 or other scopes of friends. It was as if I could see through the gas very three dimensional. So taking it in for about 15 minutes I thought lets do a star test. I slewed to Sirus and tried the focus. Then I realized I needed someone who knew and understood this stuff and I really didnt care what it looked like so I went back to looking at cool stuff. It was dark enough that I slewed back to Jupiter to give it a go again with the Pentax. The view was a little steadier but I enjoy the 7 and 13 much better. Im not in the best place to view with trees growing higher from a few years ago, and I just wanted to get a few targets to see. Hopefully I will get out tomorrow night with our group and get some other targets, but for now I needed to pack it up being I have a busy day tomorrow. Plus I am in the process of selling my home and will be looking for a place with a bigger back yard. When I go look at houses I pull out my compass to see where North is and say "nope" this covers the South so this house wont work. LOL Anyway I am waiting for the moon but I think by the time it rises above the trees it will be pretty late so I am packing it in.

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Hermie
sage
*****

Reged: 04/20/05

Loc: Cloudy HKG
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #5706574 - 03/01/13 03:50 AM

Congratulations on a first-class scope! I'm sure it will be great for imaging as well.

Hermie


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Erik Bakker
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 08/10/06

Loc: The Netherlands, Europe
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #5706593 - 03/01/13 04:23 AM

Congrats on your great new scope Rob!

I recommend that you couple this superb instrument with the best sensors available: your eyes

No need for primitive electronics any longer

Love that Orion above your scope in the picture. Nothing quite like the Orion nebula to connect with the heavens.


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timps
sage


Reged: 02/24/13

Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: Erik Bakker]
      #5706599 - 03/01/13 04:36 AM

Please let me know what you think of this new scope. I am considering buying a new scope, but at the moment am torn between the TEC 140 and Takahashi TOA 130.

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Erik Bakker
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 08/10/06

Loc: The Netherlands, Europe
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: timps]
      #5706600 - 03/01/13 04:40 AM

Quote:

Please let me know what you think of this new scope. I am considering buying a new scope, but at the moment am torn between the TEC 140 and Takahashi TOA 130.




What is your intended use for the new scope?


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t.r.
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: Erik Bakker]
      #5706710 - 03/01/13 07:45 AM

Enjoy the new scope Snommisbor! I had many firsts with my TEC 140. If you plan to use it alot for visual and you are into planetary viewing, get yourself the TV 3-6 zoom. I used the full range of that zoom for planets/doubles/lunar and used the 4mm setting alot, providing 245x even on Jupiter which is considered a soft target! This scope is fully capable of providing WOW views to over 300x on good nigts. Have fun!

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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: timps]
      #5706842 - 03/01/13 09:35 AM

Quote:

Please let me know what you think of this new scope. I am considering buying a new scope, but at the moment am torn between the TEC 140 and Takahashi TOA 130.




I was as well, I had a friend who has the TOA 130 with the smaller focuser and it is a big scope. It is so heavy on the front end it requires a counterweight on the back. Unless you get the larger focuser. The views were spectacular in the TOA. Depending on what mount you are going to use could be another factor. I decided that the TEC had 10mm more in aperture which doesnt mean much but it still is 10mm more. And in the end either is a world class instrument and will show great views and take incredible photos. But I think TEC would be worth the wait. I really like what I have seen of the new focuser on TEC.


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CounterWeight
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #5707435 - 03/01/13 04:16 PM

I think the only thing better than owning one is living somewhere you can use it frequently... looks to me like you have both ! Congrat's.

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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #5707505 - 03/01/13 05:14 PM

I'm pretty sure you can drive the EM-200 with an iPad Mini (perfect size for a controller; not too big like an iPad and not too small like an iPhone) plus Sky Safari. Oh and throw in Sky Fi too, for wireless piloting.

Looks like I'm coming to your house to observe next time I'm in Austin.

- Jim


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Bowmoreman
Clear enough skies
*****

Reged: 09/11/06

Loc: Bolton, MA
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5707602 - 03/01/13 06:23 PM

Congrats, Rob!

I was torn between precisely those two scopes... Went TOA because I will be higher proportion AP... But I love the aperture increase and weight decrease of the TEC... It just wouldn't fit in my observatory... The TOA barely does, and as you mention, with the 4" focuser is a weight beast!

Jealous of your location, especially this time of year


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stevetaylor199
sage
*****

Reged: 09/21/11

Loc: SE Wisconsin
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: Bowmoreman]
      #5707903 - 03/01/13 10:22 PM

Great photo! That's very nice that shows details on the scope while making the stars plain. And inviting.

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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5708109 - 03/02/13 02:12 AM

Jim,

I have the iPad with Sky Safari on it and I plan to get the wifi version of it to use for when Im visual. The Mac will then be used for AP due to the guiding software.

Also, you are more than welcome to come when your in Austin, who wouldnt want The Most Interesting Astronomer in the Universe to visit. I actually try to get guys in our observing group to come down to our ranch which is a Grey zone, so the views are spectacular. That is where I cant wait to take the TEC 140.


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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: First Light TEC 140 [Re: Bowmoreman]
      #5708116 - 03/02/13 02:20 AM

Thanks Dave,

Yes, our 40 degree nights can be a little chilly for us Texans. I still get chills when I see photos of scopes in the snow.


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Bowmoreman
Clear enough skies
*****

Reged: 09/11/06

Loc: Bolton, MA
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: snommisbor]
      #5708400 - 03/02/13 09:38 AM

I'm strongly considering a move to the hill country, and want a compromise between being within an hour of a Whole Foods in San Antonio or Austin, and having 5 or more acres, decent skies for observing...

Say the triangle from Kerrville, to New Braunfels, to just south of Bee Caves... How ARE the skies in that area dark wise?


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snommisbor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/15/09

Loc: Cedar Park, TX
Re: First Light TEC 140 new [Re: Bowmoreman]
      #5708459 - 03/02/13 10:15 AM

You could get into a Yellow to Green zone pretty easily. Im in an Orange Zone at my house but it turns to Yellow maybe 5 miles further. The Austin Astronomical Group has a site that is a Blue Zone about 50 minutes from me. I'm out by Lake Travis, but it is growing out this way. But they are keeping some areas that are wildlife refuges. Nice thing about being west of Austin, San Antonio is if you look at the light pollution map that it pretty much stops at I-35 so going West you get into dark skies pretty quickly. So come on out, it supposed to be clear skies sunny and 63 today and 73 tomorrow.

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