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APM 152 ED APO club

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#126 daquad

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Posted 24 February 2018 - 02:11 PM

That dovetail bar is a good idea.  Notice in my pic that I have one attached to the two additional Parallax rings near the focuser and I've added a steering handle.  The dovetail bar also serves as a handle to carry the scope.  I hold the bar with my right hand and cradle the tube in my left hand and raise the scope onto the rings.  The parallax rings also provide a nice balance to the tube assembly.

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#127 drd715

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Posted 24 February 2018 - 02:39 PM

drd715 you're really going to like that APM 152.  Did you notice the machined baffles inside the 3.7" focuser tube?  Both the focusers for the APM Ed's (2.5" and 3.7") are based on the Starlite Instrument models and APM has executed the design beautifully.

 

Did you get it at the sale price, hopefully?

 

I haven't had any problem with marring the tube with the dew shield clamp screw.  I removed the screw and looked inside the hole with a flashlight.  There appears to be what looks like a brass stop at the bottom of the hole, but I can't be sure.   It definitely is not felt.  I always back the screw off several turns before sliding the dew shield back; maybe that is why I haven't scratched the tube.

 

Good luck with your new scope.  Wish I had your seeing.

 

Dom Q.

Yes this is a great scope. Everything is top quality. Fantasic 3.7 inch focuser.

 

On mine the clamp screw for the dew shield slide pushed directly against the material (fo-leather like felt) with no backstop brass or otherwise. The fo-leather soft slider is glued to the under side of the ring in a recessed slot. The screw clamp pin which is very small in diameter was pushing directly on the soft material. By adding the larger 1/2 inch puck the clamping force is spread out over a larger contact surface; still beneath the soft material so just spreads out the contact resistance force over more soft slide material.  Works great, noticebly less screw force to clamp the slider.  While the original pin screw worked it needs just a bit more force to clamp the slider and in my case was maring the tube paint in a narrow strip. 

 

And I do love the tube paint quality. The white paint is tough ,also it has a bit of a metallic sparkle in bright sunlight.

 

Yes I did get the sale price, but with $2500 plus $300 upgraded 3.7 inch focuser, plus $300 shiping ad $200 duty; at $3300 (a significant expenditure)  it is of such great quality that the value is 100% there.  - I am very pleased with this telescpe -


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#128 drd715

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Posted 24 February 2018 - 02:59 PM

That dovetail bar is a good idea.  Notice in my pic that I have one attached to the two additional Parallax rings near the focuser and I've added a steering handle.  The dovetail bar also serves as a handle to carry the scope.  I hold the bar with my right hand and cradle the tube in my left hand and raise the scope onto the rings.  The parallax rings also provide a nice balance to the tube assembly.

The Parallax rings are very nice and a heavier built structure.  The extra equipment near the aft end of the tube really balances out the centering of tube to mount position.  With quick release clamps I can leave the top bar on the OTA and still have it fit into the case.  Now to get a little more sky time. Currently refining an auto tracking system with PHD and a ZWO 290 mini. 



#129 drd715

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Posted 24 February 2018 - 03:09 PM

Slide dew shield puck.

The slide soft material was reinstalled over the puck so the puck pushes down on the material, not on the tube as the material is between the puck and the tube.



#130 Bomber Bob

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:12 PM

May fortune favor the foolish:  Gonna attempt imaging with the 152 for the first time this weekend -- Moon tonight, and Jupiter (& maybe Mars!) in the morning.  Seeing forecast for near perfect at The Swamp, so I won't have that excuse -- dang it!

 

No.  Joy!  Air was calmer this morning than last night, but it still limited the Vixen FL80S to 100x (& the APM 152 to 200x).  Brief flashes of detail, like Ganymede's shadow, so it was worth hauling out the gear.  And after weeks of cloudy nights, seeing anything was great.  A few times the V80 put some real red in the GRS.  At just 200x, I did see 6 belts in the 152 (only 3 in the V80), and some features in the EQ belts.  But in the worst seeing, I got a light blue crescent on Jupiter's limb with the APM 152.  It was always on the trailing edge.  Jupiter's disk color was very similar to my reflectors -- more white than gray -- so the very dry clear air has an impact with this scope.  No way was I gonna haul out the imaging gear.  When I first started, I would image just about every halfway decent night just to get comfortable with the process, but those results were poor.  I'd rather wait and give the 152 a chance to wow me.

 

Gonna try again tomorrow morning if the seeing is better tonight than last night.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 03 March 2018 - 09:23 AM.


#131 daquad

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:36 PM

Nice to know somebody has clear skies.  We are in the middle of a gale wit 3+ inches of rain to last another 18 hours.  Good luck with your imaging.  Wish I had your seeing.

 

Dom Q.


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#132 Bomber Bob

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:41 PM

We are in the middle of a gale wit 3+ inches of rain to last another 18 hours.

 

Youch!  Batten down the hatches!!   This is the first decent weather we've had in at least 3 weeks...  makes me antsy.  The 152 is too big to move around the yard for cloud & tree dodging.  But the views sure are worth the effort to set up & take down.


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#133 Bomber Bob

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Posted 03 March 2018 - 09:01 PM

So far tonight:

 

- Castor:  Clean split at 40x with a 35mm barreled spectros KE30.

- Trapezium:  4 stars at just 24x with spectros KE50.  (The 50/40/30 have the large barrels.)

 

Seeing is near perfect, and the air is much calmer than last night.

 

The optics & mechanics of the 152 make it a super star splitter.  The R&P is vibration free at both coarse & fine -- makes nailing perfect focus easy-peasy.

 

you should have tried for E and F

 

I did, and I did see E at 240x with a spectros PL5; and, I think F popped in/out intermittently, but not well enough for me to claim seeing it.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 04 March 2018 - 09:44 AM.

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#134 daquad

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 09:17 AM

So far tonight:

 

- Castor:  Clean split at 40x with a 35mm barreled spectros KE30.

- Trapezium:  4 stars at just 24x with spectros KE50.  (The 50/40/30 have the large barrels.)

 

Seeing is near perfect, and the air is much calmer than last night.

 

The optics & mechanics of the 152 make it a super star splitter.  The R&P is vibration free at both coarse & fine -- makes nailing perfect focus easy-peasy.

Bob, with near perfect seeing, you should have tried for E and F, or did you but forgot to mention it?  On an average night here in southern New England I can Usually nail the E, but the F often proves elusive.



#135 Bomber Bob

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 09:52 AM

First Imaging Session with the APM 152 ED

 

This morning at 1030Z (0430L):

Temp  42°F (6°C)
Humidity 68%
Wind Speed Calm
Barometer 30.23 in (1023.6 mb)
Dewpoint 32°F (0°C)
Visibility 10.00 mi

SEEING = 7 / 10 (low level haze / river smog)

 

ASI120MC + GSO APO 2.5x Barlow (EFL 3000mm).  Moon glow went about halfway to Jupiter before it tapered-out and I thought about not imaging, but I'd already prepped all the gear.  These are RAW images with no post-processing, stacked with AS!3 64-bit.  The haze was almost uniformly thin, but in the last image a "clump" drifted across the field while shooting the AVI.

 

APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V06BR11.jpg  APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V07BR11.jpg  APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V08BR11.jpg  APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V09BR01.jpg

 

I haven't imaged since October, so I had to get refreshed on the process while learning the new scope.  I tried lots of camera settings and wound up making over a dozen videos before sunrise really made the sky glow!


Edited by Bomber Bob, 04 March 2018 - 09:54 AM.

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#136 daquad

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 10:17 AM

First Imaging Session with the APM 152 ED

 

This morning at 1030Z (0430L):

Temp  42°F (6°C)
Humidity 68%
Wind Speed Calm
Barometer 30.23 in (1023.6 mb)
Dewpoint 32°F (0°C)
Visibility 10.00 mi

SEEING = 7 / 10 (low level haze / river smog)

 

ASI120MC + GSO APO 2.5x Barlow (EFL 3000mm).  Moon glow went about halfway to Jupiter before it tapered-out and I thought about not imaging, but I'd already prepped all the gear.  These are RAW images with no post-processing, stacked with AS!3 64-bit.  The haze was almost uniformly thin, but in the last image a "clump" drifted across the field while shooting the AVI.

 

attachicon.gif APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V06BR11.jpg attachicon.gif APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V07BR11.jpg attachicon.gif APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V08BR11.jpg attachicon.gif APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V09BR01.jpg

 

I haven't imaged since October, so I had to get refreshed on the process while learning the new scope.  I tried lots of camera settings and wound up making over a dozen videos before sunrise really made the sky glow!

Looking forward to your final results.



#137 Bomber Bob

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Posted 04 March 2018 - 05:47 PM

This image shows the effects of the haze layer -- and its variable thickness.  Normally at this magnification, the Galileans would be tiny perfect disks, and not this misshapen.  They also wouldn't differ as much as in the zoomed copies:

 

APM152 - Jupiter 20180304V05BR83.jpg

 

I post this because these images are not representative of what the 152 can do in better seeing.  Why show them at all?  I share the good, the bad, & the ugly (cue Sergio Leone); and, hopefully my next session will be under better circumstances.  In comparison, I got this image on a night of excellent seeing with the vintage Ralph Dakin 4" F10 achromatic:

 

Dakin 4 - Jupiter 20170628V02AU01.jpg

 

Same camera & Barlow.  Notice that in the 152 images Jupiter's disk is cleaner & whiter.


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#138 Bomber Bob

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Posted 07 June 2018 - 08:57 PM

Jupiter - Io Eclipse

 

About 3 minutes before Io disappeared:

 

APM ED 152 - Jupiter 20180608V06R31.jpg

 

My second imaging session with the APM 152 went much better than the first!  ASI120MC @ 30fps through a GSO APO 2.5x Barlow.  Seeing about an 8/10 -- thin wispy mid-level clouds streamed across intermittently, but the air mass was overall almost as calm as last night.  Hot!!  94F Heat Index at The Swamp.

 

In the 1st session I wanted to show the 152 has little / no false color.  Last night I went for fine detail / resolution & contrast.  Image holds up well when I apply IrfanView's 1.5x magnifier:

 

APM ED 152 - Jupiter 20180608V06R32.jpg

 

But it does "go soft" at the 2.0 setting.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 08 June 2018 - 05:23 AM.

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#139 Bomber Bob

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Posted 08 June 2018 - 10:54 PM

Jupiter -- the GRS & Io Transit -- riding high at The Swamp with near-perfect seeing -- and my 152 delivered stunning views.  She's sharp & bright at 500x, but after a week of work, 400x better suited my tired old eyes.  I'm used to straining to see detail in small refractors.  Straining is not required with this scope.  GRS is flame-red with outer & inner rinds, a dark red center, and subtle patterns between.  So much disk detail!  No way I could ever sketch all of it & do it justice.  The Galileans vary in brightness, size, & color:  Io is like a mix of pale yellow & orange;  Europa is obviously smaller, dimmer, and dull whitish;  Ganymede & Callisto are close in apparent size, but while Callisto is a pale gray-white, I see that the southern 1/3 of Ganymede is lighter & brighter, and I get random flashes of a very light red -- at the limits of my vision.


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#140 donadani

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 06:30 AM

Hi Bob,

 

I always asked myself how good these ED´s are corrected colorwise... So 400-500x is a lot for the aperture of 152mm and any color genereated by the optics should be clearly visible here...

 

In a german forum now a guy  posted a pic made with a short 150mm achromat - look here: http://www.astrotref...chpage=1#803663

 

I see the same resolution but the CA is of course worser then in the ED you poste here in the thread:  https://www.cloudyni...club/?p=8627684

 

I then searched for a photo made with a TOA-150 - known as one of the best corrected 6" apos around and found it here: https://www.astrobin...5418/B/?nc=user

 

Would be interesting if the differences are visually the same in a direct shootout.

 

cs

Chris


Edited by donadani, 09 June 2018 - 06:31 AM.

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#141 Bomber Bob

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Posted 09 June 2018 - 05:05 PM

I always asked myself how good these ED´s are corrected colorwise...

 

No false color with the APM 152, regardless of object type, magnitude, or natural color.  Not even the places I see it with my best traditional achromatics:  Along the illuminated lunar limb, the brightest parts of crater walls, or isolated peaks right along the Terminator.

 

My 1995 Vixen FL80S F8 Fluorite presents objects with the same natural colors I see with my own eyes.  In comparisons with the APM 152, I do see color differences.  For example, Vega in the FL80S has an icy white appearance, but there's a bit of blue mixed in with the APM 152.  Arcturus has more orange than red in the Fluorite, but the opposite in the APM.  I don't call these false colors, just variations in the way each scope presents the naked-eye colors.  It could also be the complex blend of accessories with the objectives.  My Baader prism diagonal has the best contrast & resolution in both scopes, but star clusters look a little brighter in my vintage Tani prisms in both APOs...


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#142 Jon_Doh

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Posted 10 June 2018 - 05:51 PM

This refractor continues to show its chops and what a superb value it is.


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#143 Jan Owen

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Posted 18 June 2018 - 09:55 PM

My APM ED 152 ED is still up & running...  During the initial launch there issues well documented here with the Lunt branded units...  I tried to buy one, but the intended supplier couldn't make their example deliver the kind of images they knew I was expecting, and it went back...  That was also detailed here.  Then I bought one directly from Markus & had it shipped here to Arizona.  It initially had issues, too, also detailed here.  But with help over the phone from Markus, I was able to solve the problems and it's been superb ever since.  Glad I stuck around for the GOOD part!!!

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#144 stevew

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 01:22 AM

Any idea if APM will keep producing these scopes, or is it more of a once their gone their gone scenario ?

I'd like to get one but my twin boys are both entering college in September so there are more important priorities at the moment..



#145 CHASLX200

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 06:04 AM

I would love to try one, but don't want to go thru another Meade 7" ED nitemare like i had in 1999.



#146 Sky Muse

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 06:43 AM

I would love to try one, but don't want to go thru another Meade 7" ED nitemare like i had in 1999.

I had a Meade-mare once, but with a model 390, and in '92.



#147 emilslomi

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 07:39 AM

I would love to try one, but don't want to go thru another Meade 7" ED nitemare like i had in 1999.

Yes, the ride for some early adopters was a little choppy. But the current lens cell is considered to be very good by users. I think there is a thread somewhere on its almost "autohealing" properties. As far as the cell is concerned there is no reason to be deterred from trying it.

 

Cheers, Emil



#148 Jan Owen

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 11:45 AM

The only issue with the APM-badged one that Markus shipped me from Germany was that at first I couldn't get it properly collimated.  With help from Markus, I found that the objective retaining ring that snugs up the optical group was loose.  After I tightened it, the collimation process worked just fine, and it came right into collimation and has remained there for a couple years or more since, with never another need to adjust.  Here's another image on another mount...  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#149 daveCollins

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 01:22 PM

My APM 175 f8 was out of collimation when I received it. I used a Takahashi collimation scope and was able to bring in into collimation in less than 30 minutes, having never collimated one of these scope previously. It was easy to do. 


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#150 CHASLX200

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Posted 19 June 2018 - 05:37 PM

The only issue with the APM-badged one that Markus shipped me from Germany was that at first I couldn't get it properly collimated.  With help from Markus, I found that the objective retaining ring that snugs up the optical group was loose.  After I tightened it, the collimation process worked just fine, and it came right into collimation and has remained there for a couple years or more since, with never another need to adjust.  Here's another image on another mount...  

Wonder if my GM8 would hold it?




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