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Glare and Tripod Question

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#1 Fred

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 05:10 PM

Just started stargazing with a pair of cheapy binoculars I bought (Celestron UpClose 10x50, recently reviewed in Astronomy magazine for 37 of the green things) When they first came they were de-collimated so I popped them back to C. to fix it. Back they came and I had a blast but I noticed two things, and didn't really worry about it because I thought it was normal. And that is, Glare, on the moon and Jupiter is where I noticed it, nowhere else. Is this normal? or did the price get into the heads of these things and they decided to get me back for going cheap?

Now for the Tripod Q. Any suggestions for looking at Zenith with a tripod. Or do you just have to go to a chiroprachtor after your observing sessions? :bawling:

Well thanks for all your help. Hopefully I'll get some quality time with my bright little (well not really) friends up there.

Quick observing report, skip if you'd like:
I was up in Michigan for awhile with a friend and we went out on his deck to watch. I brought my new binocular Astronomy book by Crossen. But after picking it up we both agreed that we just wanted to just look up and relax. I showed him M13 through my binocs (he had 7x30s and it looked far better in the 10x50s. This was about the third time I've seen it (Where the tripod comes in, I want to see it with a tripod and mabye do a little binocular sketching) We saw around 5 sattelites, which I find are really fun to watch them move across the sky once you've found them. One of them seemed to slow down and speed up again but I think thats just an optical illusion. Friend saw a shooting star, probably one of the perseids because It was in that time. Well now that I've given you this much reading material and hope it was interesting, I think its quite enough now. So toodle-pip and thanks again :grin:

Edit: Zenith spelt wrong, sorry! :(

#2 Erik D

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 05:41 PM

Hi Fred,

Go the the "Best of" section at the very top of this forum. Go down about 1/2 way and you'll see a thread titled "Binocurlar Mounts, Tripods, adapters etc" There are plenty of tripod/head combos in that section.

I consider it a must to have a tripod/head combo tall enough that you can stand and look straight up without arching or bending your back. Be prepared to spend more than $100 for a good tripod/head:

http://www.adorama.c...ripod&item_no=6


You will upgrade your optics later but consider a good tripod an investment for life....

Erik D

#3 Fred

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Posted 31 July 2005 - 05:54 PM

For 10x50s though? I have a normal camera tripod, but yes it does shake quite A bit but it settles down after a bit, and its definately tall enough.

#4 DJB

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 01:43 AM

Hi Fred,

I have noticed that satellites sometime do appear to speed up or slow down.

This is most likely attributed to the fact that the brightness changes as you observe. Now that is due to orientation, rotation of the satellite, sun-to-satellite-to viewer angles, and even thin cloud covers. Pretty much normal to see the effect, however.

Regards,

Dave.

#5 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 07:21 AM

Fred, this "glaring" that you speak of could be chromatic abberations. Do you see unusal colors around the limb of the moon? You might also see flaring around Jupiter. These are seen to me as small spikes of light that radiate outward.

Viewing zenith can be tricky. If your bins are going to be mounted on a tripod, and you don't have a p-mount, I don't think there is much you can do to reduce the neck strain. It's a definite pain for me as well. If you have a p-mount you could lay down on a reclining chair or something. This would help, but at a cost. Good p-mounts can be pricey unless you build one yourself.

#6 Craig Simmons

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 07:32 AM

If you're handy with tools, this is a comfortable way I came up with to view overhead with 15x70 and smaller binos....

http://tinyurl.com/baxdw

or Mike Moffat's solution from a chair...

http://tinyurl.com/8ahn8

#7 Joe Ogiba

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 07:34 AM

Any suggestions for looking at Zenith with a tripod


90° binoculars are the only way to look at the zenith without having a pain in the neck unless you get a Unimount and reclining chair .

#8 Mark9473

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 02:27 PM

Any suggestions for looking at Zenith with a tripod.


I posted my method in a recent post on using 15x70s handheld: tilt the tripod backbards on two legs, and hold those two legs with your hands for stability. Sitting slightly leaned back on an ordinary chair, this works well for me for viewing the zenit.

No doubt a P-mount and a reclining chair would still be more comfortable, but the above method works sufficiently well for me to hold off on buying a P-mount for now.

#9 Fred

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 08:32 PM

I checked the tripod I have again, and Its worse than I thought. If it turns out that I'm really into using binoculars on tripods then I'll get one but, for now I think I'm alright. I got the mount thinking I would be able to see more and mabye do a sketch or two just for fun. Which I probably will be able to do because after a couple of seconds of shaking it calms down again (Looking straight is how I tested it though)

Does anybody think its worth it to try to build a sturdy wood tripod somehow.

Another thing I thought of was that if I end up buying a telescope with a tripod mount, just wondering if I bought a good head if it doubles over?

Thanks again for all your help!

#10 Erik D

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Posted 01 August 2005 - 10:03 PM

Another thing I thought of was that if I end up buying a telescope with a tripod mount, just wondering if I bought a good head if it doubles over?


A tripod with an Alt Az mount for a scope COULD work as binocular mount. The Orion Az-3 mount with the 1/4-20 attachment comes to mind.... the problem is most telescope tripods are designed for scopes with a 90 deg diagonal. You look down instead of straight up as in binoculars. Scope tripods are usually no more than 60 inch tall and without an adjustable center column....not tall enough for standing observation. You can purchase a adjustable height astronomy chair and observe seated. However, a solid observing chair can cost ~$150, weighs 15+ lbs. I have a very nice StarDust chair but rarely use it. I prefer to use my Bogen 3221 tripod and 501 fluid head. This combo is about 76 in tall with a ~18 in center column. Total weight with my 20X80 bino is 16.5 lbs. I carry the whole set-up out the door in one hand, take off the lens caps and I am ready to observe......I also have the Orion Az3 mount but have not use it for more than 2 years.

Invest in a good tripod from the start and you'll save money in the long run.

Erik D

#11 Fred

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Posted 02 August 2005 - 10:29 AM

Thats quite a bit of money especially for handhelds. But I suppose that if I get one of the heavy duty ones If I ever upgrade binos to a bigger size I don't have to get a new tripod.

I'll have to see, because I may just prefer sticking to handholding my 10x50s and getting a scope.

#12 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 02 August 2005 - 10:34 AM

It is a tough call Fred on what to do, but if you are going to be serious about using binoculars for all, or at least a major portion, of your observing, Erik's suggestion is a good one. You don't want a collection of tripods...


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