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Catseye vs. Howie Glatter and Blug??

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#1 matthew2000tx

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 12:51 AM

Since I just got my new 16" Lightbridge I'm needing to get 2" Collimation tools. I've narrowed it down to either the Howie Glatter and Blug or Catseye Trio-Delux.

I like the Simplicity of the Howie Glatter and the Blug and the cost is less than the catesys trio. Last Wednesday I helped a collimate a Obsession 30" using a Glatter without a blug and seems fast and simple. I know about errors with lasers but from what I read the Howie is quality! Is that tru? I used one a extensively a few years back to set up my neighbor's Starfinder 16" Dob that my neighbor had.

I like the comprehensiveness of the catseye but it seems almost too complicated and complex. I've read/re-read and watched video after video on their website and it just seems confusing way more than the nice collimation video that Andys Shot Glass has on it.

What I've got now is a 1.25" Cheiser and a 1.25" Collimation cap, which served me well on my Odyessy 10, but now that the 16" LB has a 2" focuser I want to upgrade.

Recommendations? Comments on each of these? :confused: Video HERE

#2 HiggsBoson

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 01:14 AM

I use the CATSEYE system.
  • The components are completely passive. They require no batteries or collimation.
  • The system is the most accurate known to me. I have read many threads on this subject and I have not yet seen a report that a laser is more accurate than an autocollimator.
  • Learning to use the system helped me to understand my telescope


#3 chuck56

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 01:23 AM

IMO. I would lean toward the passive systems like Farpoint
or Catseye.

#4 Jason D

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 01:27 AM

Matthew,

Both are fine/reputable products. It really comes down to personal preference.

If you decide to go with a laser solution then do consider the holographic laser attachment or a quality sight-tube. You can’t use a single laser beam tool to center the secondary.

Jason

#5 tom r.

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:04 AM

When I was at the same crossroad a little over a year ago, I chose the CatsEye system. And yes, it was personal, I didn't want to bother with collimated lasers and batteries.
I enjoyed the small learning curve in using the system and can now have pin point collimation in just a few minutes.
I bought the combo sight tube and auto collimater (two pieces of equiptment).

What ever you choose, you will like the results! :)

Tom

#6 F.Meiresonne

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 06:26 AM

I use a Howie Glatter and a blug. Works like a dream. I have my scope collimated in no time. No peeking through a cheshire or sighttube.
Trouble is, this systems only works with a good laser and there aren't many around.
A Howie glatter is one of the few real good ones and built like a tank.
This said the collimation system of the Obsession is the best i ever seen so far. 4 screws on the secundary and no tools needed. Works fast en efficient. That helps alot too of course...
My OO is more difficult to do for that matter...it has 3 screws and i need a screwdriver. That keeps me busy for a while...this is not the case on the Obsession.

#7 hansolo

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 08:06 AM

hey matt did you look at the ho tech laser collimator if u go to utube and type in ho tech collimator there are i think 3 videos on there demonstrating it

#8 dvb

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 10:46 AM

I started with the Catseye system -- it is extremely accurate.

However, I now use the Howie Glatter, with the Barlow and 1mm attachments -- very quick, a no-brainer to use and accurate.

Both firms need to work on their websits -- CatsEye has too much, Glatter has too little -- but both are terrific to deal with.

#9 Starman1

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 11:02 AM

Whether using a passive tool set of sight tube plus cheshire, or an active tool set like a laser and laser plus barlow, you will still need one passive tool to do final collimation at f/4.5.
That tool is an autocollimator, and the 2" Catseye is one of the best.
The autocollimator is capable of collimating more finely and eliminating residual errors left by other tools, whether active or passive.
So whether you choose to use a laser/Blug combo, or a sight tube/cheshire, or a laser/cheshire combo, also buy an autocollimator to refine you collimation.
You'll be rewarded with the best images your scope can produce.
Don

#10 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 11:18 AM

Hey Don,

If you were to pull out your autocollimator after the final alignment and put it back in, how close would the stacks appear to be again? I know you combine the stacks but I sometimes wonder about how the stacks appear just from the slight removal and return of the autocollimator. It's also interesting to observe how much flexure are in some of these dobs. You can see the stacks moving all over the place when moving the scopes up and down.

#11 JR1560

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 11:23 AM

Any other autocollimator reccomendations, besides Catseye?

#12 Buck

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 11:32 AM

The 2" Catseye Autocollimator gets my vote, and I believe the only 2" on the market that I know of.
I use the Glatter system for normal collimation and check with the Catseye Autocollimator. I also have the Catseye 2" sitetube/cheshire combo tool(forgot the name)) for the occasional focuser-secondary rough alignment.
Buck

#13 Astro Sky

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 12:23 PM

As a telescopes dob builder,I choose Catseye.BEST

James G.

#14 CatseyeMan

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 12:43 PM

... CatsEye has too much ...


No doubt there is a "lot" of information I've put out on the site over the years, but I have something there for everyone's level of comprehension and interest; however, I'm always open to suggestions for improvement. If there's some non-useful or too technical information on the site that needs to be eliminated, let me know via email flyj@catseyecollimation.com or PM :grin:

#15 JimMo

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 01:53 PM

I use the HG 2" laser, BLUG, then the Catseye auto collimator, and then I repeat. Works great for me.

#16 JR1560

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 01:55 PM

If you were to pull out your autocollimator after the final alignment and put it back in, how close would the stacks appear to be again? I know you combine the stacks but I sometimes wonder about how the stacks appear just from the slight removal and return of the autocollimator. It's also interesting to observe how much flexure are in some of these dobs. You can see the stacks moving all over the place when moving the scopes up and down.



I ordered the Howie Glatter and the Blug. I thought this problem was solved. Why exactly do you need to collimate at f /4.5 anyway? What is the process of collimating at f/4.5. Aren't we splitting hairs here?

In my opinion, all the Catseye stuff is too expensive for my blood. Since there are no other 2" autocollimators on the Market? - What about this: Would this work with a 1.25 to 2" adaptor?
http://www.agenaastr...alc-js-etii.htm

Seems to me I have purchased a telescope that has numerous design flaws and won't hold collimation. Maybe I'll just cancel the Order, and all the accessories, and buy an SCT.

#17 DeepSpaceTour

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 02:11 PM

I use neither....(just to give you an excellent option)...I use the Kendrick 2" collimator with detachable 45 deg. face(it screws on and off and is the same thread pitch as my 2" barlow)This set up that I use on my 17.5" Discovery TD is dead accurate and dead easy,collimation is a breeze.

I use the Kendrick 2" collimator in single beam mode to point the secondary reflected beam to the center of the primary and back on itself,then take out the 2" collimator,unscrew the 45 deg. face and screw the face onto the bottom of my 2" Big Barlow,put the 2" body into the barlow,then that set up goes into the focuser...collimate the primary(barlowed collimation).pull that out of the focuser and go back to single beam mode just to check that things haven't moved(usually they haven't)...Done!!!And yes the Kendrick lazer collimator(at least mine anyway)is collimated and has proved to stay collimated,and is dead easy in itself to collimate,if you have ground and matched machinists V blocks,which are inexpensive and easy to come by.

I have checked this with a Tectron autocollimator many times,and have found this to be dead on(all the images stacked nicely)...now to the point I rarely use the autocollimator.


Clear skies.

#18 Jason D

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 02:20 PM

In my opinion, all the Catseye stuff is too expensive for my blood. Since there are no other 2" autocollimators on the Market? - What about this: Would this work with a 1.25 to 2" adaptor?
http://www.agenaastr...alc-js-etii.htm

I bought the EasyTester autocollimator tool long time ago and ended up returning it. It is NOT an autocollimator as the name of the tool suggests. It does have the perforated flat mirror but it lacks precision. In fact, the document of the tool does not even mention stacking ghost images. It simply states to adjust the primary until the view is darkened but mathematically that is not enough precision.
Bottom line: JSP EasyTester auto-collimator is a very expensive collimation cap.
Jason

#19 csa/montana

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 02:40 PM

Why exactly do you need to collimate at f /4.5 anyway?



The faster the scope, the more crucial collimation needs to be; that is if you want decent views.

Seems to me I have purchased a telescope that has numerous design flaws and won't hold collimation.



There's many, many happy Dob owners that don't feel that they have numerous design flaws, preventing them from holding collimation. I rarely had to re-collimate my 8" Dob, just a little "tweaking", despite moving it in/out of the house for each viewing session. My 16" isn't moved (in observatory), but the collimation is still holding from the first time I did the collimation.

#20 F.Meiresonne

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 02:44 PM

As i have a truss i have to collimate every time. But with the laser and the blug it has really become a nobrainer.

#21 DeepSpaceTour

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:02 PM

.....Oh!! I forgot to mention if you go to Kendricks web site they have a new collimator(came out last year)...that is a self contained single beam-barlowed collimator in one unit,you just flip a switch from single beam to barlowed collimation or visa-versa,the switch moves a barlowing lens in and out of the lazer beam path the laser has a 45deg. face,it is really quite the slick set up,if I didn't have what I already have,I would go for it for sure,think about it collimation without moving the tools around to change up,just flip a switch..cool, check it out!!!!

Clear skies.

#22 JR1560

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:25 PM

I was waiting for Don to explain, but maybe you can help me.
I also plan for a permanent position. Just how do you collimate at f/4.5? It seems both the Meade & the AT go out of collomation when moved up and down.

There's many, many happy Dob owners that don't feel that they have numerous design flaws, preventing them from holding collimation.


I know there are many Dob owners with no problems. I certainly wasn't refering to them, Nor did I mention anyone else. I was refering to the Meade Scope I have on order. I do believe there are some design issues that Meade or GSO should correct.

#23 csa/montana

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:36 PM

I have the CatsEye tools for collimation.

Hopefully, Jay or some other Meade owners can help answer your questions, & set your mind at ease. I think you would be most happy with the Meade; I wouldn't let the collimation stop you from enjoying that great scope.

#24 LateViewer

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 03:52 PM

Glatter Blug and Laser solved my collimation problems. So easy no guessing.

Al

#25 Starman1

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Posted 23 November 2008 - 04:36 PM

Hey Don,

If you were to pull out your autocollimator after the final alignment and put it back in, how close would the stacks appear to be again? I know you combine the stacks but I sometimes wonder about how the stacks appear just from the slight removal and return of the autocollimator. It's also interesting to observe how much flexure are in some of these dobs. You can see the stacks moving all over the place when moving the scopes up and down.

Daniel,
Short answer: I alternate between the cheshire and autocollimator for final collimation. You can stack the images and have the primary slightly off, so I bring the stack together, check the primary alignment with the cheshire (often, it needs a tiny tweak), then check the stack in the autocollimator again. When I go back and forth between the cheshire and AC and neither shows any shift at all, I'm done.
Therefore, reinserting the AC has no effect on the stacking of the centermarks.

The AC, but not the cheshire or sight tube, taught me my original scope had collimation shift with altitude.
I had 4 problems:
1) sag in the spider when the scope pointed low and the entire weight of the secondary was beside, rather than uner, the spider. The cure was figuring out how to supertighten the vanes to prevent sag. It took modification of the scope.
2) movement of primary mirror on its springs. I figured this one out--the springs were nearly uncompressed, and flexed easily. Since my scope had no locking screws, the top spring flexed outward when the scope pointed low. The cure was to tighten the collimation springs all the way and collimate by loosening only. Now, the springs are so tight there is no movement.
3) movement of truss poles at point of attachment. The cure was to move the attachment points at the UTA outward so the poles on either side of the UTA were no longer parallel. This improved rigidity in the scope, and stopped slippage entirely.
4) flexure at the focuser. A complete rebuild of the JMI NGF-DX3 focuser almost eliminated this. A change to a Moonlite CR1 focuser DID eliminate this. I don't say that all JMI NGF focusers have or had (since they're discontinued) the problems mine had, but the Moonlite doesn't sag at all with the weight of a Paracorr and 31 Nagler in it. There is another reason for this, as well as the focuser's inherent rigidity--the tightening of the primary's collimation springs brought the focus point closer to the UTA, where the focuser is almost all the way in at focus. I think it likely nearly all focusers are more rigid when they focus closer to the tube.

At this point, I only periodically check for collimation change with altitude since the scope is substantially more stable.
It's fascinating to watch collimation wander as the scope cools only to see the scope return to perfect collimation a couple hours later as the poles achieve thermal equilibrium.


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