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Help! 130GT - Dumb Newbie

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#1 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 01 February 2004 - 08:36 PM

I was trying to collimate my 130GT for the first time. There are six screws at the back for the main mirror: three fat screws and three long and lean screws. I unscrewed one of the flat screws (the flat screws have the springs) a bit too far and it came off. There is no way to get the screw back in, since the post it screws over is a bit too short.

Now, the really stupid thing is that in trying to fix the darn thing, all the flat screws are now off (don't ask). Looks like the main mirror is just loosely laying in the back of the tube.

So, how do I go about reassemling the scope? There are three phillips-head screws on the sides of the tube, but I'm not sure if I should take those apart to access the mirror and reassmble the main mirror.

Ok, folks. No laughing, please. :o Please, just help me out the hole I just dug for myself.

Thanks! :bawling:

Pat

P.S. Amazon kept saying that the "NexStar User Guide" wouldn't be shipping for another four weeks...but as soon as I came online to ask for help, Amazon notified me that the book shipped yesterday! I should have waited :foreheadslap:

#2 techmgr

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Posted 01 February 2004 - 08:49 PM

No guarantees, but I looked over my N114GT which is similar to your 130, and it looks like those three phillips-head screws hold the mirror cell on to the tube. It looks like you could take those off - carefully - to remove the whole cell and that might allow you to reattach the collimation screws (the fat ones). Then when you re-collimate, loosen the three lean screws before you turn any of the fat ones.

You might also try just loosening one or two of the lean screws to see if the mirror tilts far enough for you to reconnect one of the collimation screws.

Good luck!

#3 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 01 February 2004 - 09:19 PM

John:

Whew! Thanks. We took the back assembly off by taking out the phillip-head screws and that made it easy to reassemble. In hind-sight (now that it's all back together again), I'm glad I messed up because I see how it works.

Thanks for verifying my thoughts that the phillips-head screws held the back assembly onto the tube.

Now, I'll go back to my first attempt at collimating...much, much more gingerly.

Regards, Pat

#4 techmgr

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Posted 01 February 2004 - 10:13 PM

I'm glad to hear this worked - now I know what to do, too! The N114GT is my first Newtonian - my SCT only has ONE mirror to worry about collimating! And I get the advantage of knowing I shouldn't loosen those fat screws too much!

#5 Syzygy

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 08:54 PM

Patzee,
I guess I'll be referring back to this thread when I get my 130GT. It's due to be on my doorstep this Friday. I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas!

John

#6 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 11:37 PM

Syzygy:

Congratulations! It's great to have another 130GT person in the group! I hope you have better viewing conditions with your scope than I have had with mine.

My 130 was an Xmas present...and it's now Feb. 2nd and I still have not had one night without heavy clouds. :bawling: The moon was visible for about 10 minutes a few weeks ago and we ran around with the scope trying to view it. We did, for about one minute. It was amazing -- we saw craters -- and that was through tinted windows with the scope straight out of the box and just picking a lens at random. Alas, it's snowing tonight (again) and I'm still waiting for my first "partially" cloudy night.

It's been quite cold in NJ. Have you had any clear nights? It must be quite cold for night viewing right now. Puxitawny Phil isn't optimistic about warm weather anytime soon! :(

Pat


#7 Matthew E

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 11:23 AM

I have a 114GT i got for an early Christmas present, and was blessed clear skies for the first 3 nights, i took it for granted that 'every' night will probably be clear but i wasn't able to use it again for about 2 weeks. I will always remember my first view...i live in a 4th floor apartment, so it was from a very light polluted area, from my balcony, and so i could only see 3 or 4 stars from my eastern view. So i pointed at the brightest object and lo and behold it was Saturn, i couldn't belive i was seeing its rings, i had a smile on my face for weeks, and still do when i think about it!!! i cant wait to get back out there!

just my 2 cents.
Matthew.



#8 TeamGS

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 03:46 PM

As a note, many of the collimation guidelines state that it is helpful to put a spot at the exact center of your primary. Others also advocate using string attached in the shape of crosshairs at the back of the open tube to help align the secondary. Removing the primary is the only way.

As a new 130 user, have you checked out the following sites?

www.nexstarsite.com

The nextar and baby nexstar Yahoo groups?

Gary

#9 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 04:31 PM

Thanks! Yes, I've been to the site and I'm waiting for delivery of the NexStar book. It should be here by tomorrow.

My idiocy was quite apparent when I did access the primary mirror to discover that Celestron had already marked the center spot with a binder reinforcer. I didn't need to do that step at all! I just didn't know what I was looking at through the Chesire Collimator.

I still don't understand exactly how to align the secondary mirror. I'm hoping the NexStar book will make the process clearer. There's not much to tweak, but I just want to learn how to do it.

#10 Syzygy

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 06:24 PM

Patzee,
I downloaded the 130's manual and the info in it is sparse, indeed. Looks like I'm going to order the "NexStar User Guide" soon. I'm a rank newbie, myself, although I did some unguided poking around with a cheap refractor when I was in junior high.
Yeah, it's been frigid and nasty here in NJ as of late. The way my luck holds, there won't be any good conditions for weeks after I get my scope :lol: Oh, well, it will give me some time to devour as much background reading as I can handle.

John

#11 TeamGS

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 06:50 PM

Not idiocy, just inexperience! At least Celestron is marking the 130 mirrors. My 114 didn't come with any.

Collimation should be a little easier in the 130, as it doesn't have the internal corrector(barlow) lens in the focuser as does the 114.

Gary

#12 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 07:09 PM


My 130GT arrived about 2 hours ago. Forecast: Rain

I must admit that I seem to have received quite a bit of bang for my buck. I must also admit that I had to do some head scratching trying to figure out how the mount would ever take the telescope anywhere near zenith. Then I realized that they had the OT clamped in backwards...for packing purposes, I guess.

I'm very excited as this is a HUGE step up from my Costco Bushnell Voyager Newt. If only the rain would go away before Orion goes away!!

Good luck,
Eric

#13 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 09:15 PM

I just received "The NexStar User's Guide". I'm really glad I ordered it. It's very readable and includes all sorts of information about NexStar scopes -- accessories, trouble shooting, alignment, control, astrophotography -- more than I ever wanted to know :cool:

It's just what I needed!



#14 Syzygy

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 09:23 PM

Patzee,
Yup, you convinced me....the "NexStar User's Guide" will be ordered here. You're three steps ahead of me here with the 130. I think it will be GREAT to compare notes as we go! I should have my 130 this Friday!

Are we there yet?

John

#15 Tom L

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 10:29 PM

So, that makes YOU the resident expert now! ;)

#16 Syzygy

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Posted 05 February 2004 - 09:36 PM

Saturn, Jupiter, and the Orion nebula are my FIRST targets with my 130 as soon as I get it. My luck, though, that the NJ weather is forecasted to be complete murk for the rest of infinity :lol:.

#17 TeamGS

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Posted 07 February 2004 - 02:30 PM

With a decent alignment, you will be able to bag those three objects within the first 10 minutes! Once you are satisfied with the alignment, you should try the "Tour" option, and you will be amazed at how many objects you will bag in the first evening, providing decent seeing conditions.

Good Luck!

Gary

#18 Syzygy

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Posted 07 February 2004 - 03:50 PM

Gary,
The scope is assembled and it works. I tried a dummy alignment inside the house just to watch it try to do it's thing. I borrowed a friend's GPS receiver, so I have an accurate present position (my back deck) to put in for the alignment...maybe tonight! :jump:


#19 Syzygy

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 01:38 AM

It didn't happen tonight :bawling:. The skies cleared but there's a front pushing through and the wind is blowing to beat the band. I went out anyway for a bit and spent a few minutes on the Moon, but the wind is blowing strong enough to move the tube around pretty good, so I packed it in.

#20 Dennis

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 12:54 PM

The jet stream is right over your house! :shocked: Winds @ 10k-57mph, @ 34k-115mph. High Pressure should settle in late tonight to calm things down. Hope you get another shot tonight. calm skies!

#21 Syzygy

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 02:40 PM

I'm setting the scope up at sundown tonight and crossing my fingers. I'm really not worried right now about perfect conditions. I just want to get this new scope out and do a little peering.

Here's hoping that the wind dies down a bit........

#22 Syzygy

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 04:23 PM

OK...the scope is outside, powered up, and cooling down. The wind is calming down. I have all my warm snugglies layed out. The plan is to dial in the Starpointer, check the collimation, and check out the auto alignment. THEN, have a little fun with the first extended outing.

Oh, boy!

:jump:

#23 Matthew E

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 04:26 PM

good luck!

I was out last night, well out for 20 min in for 20 min...you know to warm up!! :)

#24 Syzygy

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 04:38 PM

Matthew E,
I'm DETERMINED! It's a brand new scope and I'm dying to get it out for longer than a 20 minute tease!

Cold or not, I'm out there! :grin:

#25 Matthew E

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Posted 08 February 2004 - 04:45 PM

Well make sure you let us know how it went!


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