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Teaser: The tension in the air is palpable.

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#26 jrbarnett

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Posted 01 February 2019 - 11:28 PM

You are in for a treat, 'tis great fun... : )

 

maximum objective size you could use with standard 2" filters is about 46mm - I use dual Optolong 2" UHCs. If anyone else is thinking of doing this, the Optolongs are a great way to go since they are so cheap, and the quality is very consistent

 

I have custom-made 2" filter adapters for my Prostaff 8x42, Visionking 5x25, Vixen SG 2.1x42, and even a pair of 'zero-power' filter spectacles : )

 

Now, Optolong do make a 77mm and even an 82mm UHC filter, getting a pair of those in front of some 11x80s would be next-level  watching.gif

Thanks for the tip on the Optolong filters Simon.

 

I like these super-gentle light pollution filters in 77mm.

 

https://www.optolong...lear-sky-filter

 

It sounds like they'd produce relatively natural coloration but also very effectively eliminate the streetlight bands.

 

They'd be adaptable for 70mm or 80mm (if you don't mind losing a little aperture) binoculars pretty easily.

 

Best,

 

Jim



#27 Simon B

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:14 AM

Thanks for the tip on the Optolong filters Simon.

 

I like these super-gentle light pollution filters in 77mm.

 

https://www.optolong...lear-sky-filter

 

It sounds like they'd produce relatively natural coloration but also very effectively eliminate the streetlight bands.

 

They'd be adaptable for 70mm or 80mm (if you don't mind losing a little aperture) binoculars pretty easily.

 

Best,

 

Jim

 

Ya no problem : )  looking forward to hearing your experiences with your custom-made adapters - never tried Skyglows on my binos though, would love to see how they'd perform

 

I did also make a pair of 48mm solar filters, I know they sell generic ones that are secured with nylon screws, but it's pretty neat to have threaded solar filters



#28 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:45 PM

Drum roll please...

 

 

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#29 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:46 PM

Next...

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#30 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:47 PM

And more...

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#31 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:49 PM

And then...

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#32 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:50 PM

But wait, there's more...

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#33 SMark

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:53 PM

laugh.gif waytogo.gif



#34 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 01:55 PM

I do have a harder time threading one filter than the other.  I'll swap the filters between adapters and see if it's the filter (likely) or the adapter.

 

The nylon attachment screws are too short to fit these natively to the narrower-barreled Action EX, but that's no surprise.  The Aculon 7x35 was the target platform.  Jason provided Harry with a pair of Aculons and that is what Harry worked with in propotyping.  I'll try a couple of things.  First, I'll see if I can find any longer, same-pitch nylon screws locally at Lowe's, Ace or Home Depot.  Failing that, I'll get some adhesive backed felt and shiim the adapters when I try them on the Action EXs later.  Here's what they look like on the Action EXs.

 

 

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#35 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:00 PM

Way leads unto way as the old Frost poem goes, and actually seeing and handling the adapters sparked a few ideas.  How about this one - create thin and light aluminum dew shades with a male thread pitch that threads into the female threads on the exposed filters.  You could even have slip on insulated sleeves for those dew shades to extend viewing sessions with the filters in humid settings.

 

And yeah, we're socked in again now.  It's drizzling and in fact I had to scramble to get everything back in the astro-shed (dubbed KV-62).

 

I'd put the first light probability for tonight around 25%.  Rain and clouds are predicted, but that little clearing earlier that let me do the unboxing photos gives me some hope.  I need to figure out the thread pitch and diameter of the screws now.

 

Best,

 

Jim


Edited by jrbarnett, 02 February 2019 - 02:02 PM.

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#36 PEterW

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:13 PM

Very nice looking setup, think I might recognise that cheap monopod ball head ;-) (just covered it with neoprene so I don’t get cold fingers). Looks like still time for the clouds to clear.

Peter
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#37 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:33 PM

As I sat in my shed, which now smells slightly of rodent and of bleach from my clean-up operation last weekend, listening to the rain patter on the skylight, cleaning the Aculons, which were last lent to a visiting coworker and his family for a beach trip, it occurred to me that I ought to try the prototypes on the Vixen SG 2.1x42 Constellations.  They fit perfectly.  So I got a "two-fer" using the adapters with their native attachment hardware.  I'm pretty chuffed.  grin.gif

 

- Jim


Edited by jrbarnett, 02 February 2019 - 04:33 PM.

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#38 Grimnir

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:38 PM

Very interesting project Jim - how do the cells affect the balance of your bins?  Clear skies to you for tonight!

 

Graham



#39 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 02:57 PM

Very nice looking setup, think I might recognise that cheap monopod ball head ;-) (just covered it with neoprene so I don’t get cold fingers). Looks like still time for the clouds to clear.

Peter

You have a keen eye Peter.

 

I recently added the pistol-grip ball head to my pistol grip height-adjustable monopod.  I did so based on something I saw in a link on one of your posts I believe.

 

But that ball head wasn't all that cheap unfortunately.  It looks to be a knock off of a discontinued Bogen design from 8-10 years ago.  I looked at a few and picked this one because it was all metal (magnesium, but it's still heavy).  It's some brand I never heard of - Studio Assets.  $90 in the US.  I also considered a Dolica head that was half that.

 

I've also messed around with it with my travel camera, a big point and shoot Panasonic travel zoom (FZ-1000).  It's a true pleasure to use with the camera.  It'll be awesome for hiking travelogues.

 

Best,

 

Jim   



#40 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 03:02 PM

Very interesting project Jim - how do the cells affect the balance of your bins?  Clear skies to you for tonight!

 

Graham

Hi Graham.

 

Not much difference to be honest.  They are relatively light and most of the mass of the Aculons in in the body (the prisms).

 

On the Vixen SGs the extra forward mass is more noticeable; though the adapters attach solidly and the screws hold them in place, they "feel" a bit front heavy and there's a bit of "oh no I am going to drop my filters!" anxiety in mock use.  I'll probably get used to it, but initially those are my impressions.

 

- Jim


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#41 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 04:30 PM

The Vixen SG Constellations sporting the adapters...

 

 

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#42 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 05:09 PM

A bit about the Orion Skyglows...

 

I have a very old Skyglow 1.25" bought from Orion's brick and mortar store in Cupertino when I was living there as a kid.  That filter was made in Japan.

 

When I returned to the Bay Area for graduate school, I visited Orion and picked up an OIII filter.  By then Orion's filters were made in Korea.  The OIII has been a nice filter.

 

When Justin enlisted me to participate in his filter adapter project I considered adding a second Celestron (same as Baader) UHC.  Though named UHC, it isn't.  It's more like a narrowish LPR filter, only a little tighter than the Skyglow or Lumicon's gentle LPR.  I could pair up my 2" Celsrton UHC for about $80 (for a single filter).  Before ordering though I decided to look at true 2" LPRs with nice wide bandpass on the theory that I'd be using small aperture and wanted as high pass through of non-streetlight wavelengths as possible.

 

I was surprised to see that the 2" Orion Skyglows were less than $60 apiece.  I figured they must've moved filter production to China to achieve such a low price.  When my pair arrived I was surprised to see that they are still made in Korea.  Opening the filter boxes I was glad to see individualized bandpass graphs.  Both are recent filters (one was made in December and the other in September).  They have similar but not identical graphs.  Both have unusually high peak transmission (97 to 99%).

 

Let's see how they work.

 

- Jim


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#43 CAAD9

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 10:04 PM

Congratulations on the whole project Jim.  I’m looking forward to hearing how it works on the night sky.

 

Adam



#44 jrbarnett

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Posted 02 February 2019 - 10:06 PM

Congratulations on the whole project Jim.  I’m looking forward to hearing how it works on the night sky.

 

Adam

Me too Adam.

 

We're having a storm right now.  Alas no first light tonight I fear unless it clears late and I'm still awake.

 

Best,

 

Jim



#45 Enkidu

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Posted 03 February 2019 - 03:08 AM

Thanks for all the impressions Jim, the build quality looks fantastic! I hope you find more bino fits (and longer screws for the AEs). They look very nice on your Galileans.

 

This design could possibly have threads added to the adapter OD to attach a dew shield; is that what you meant above?

 

Our local sky is clear this evening, good conditions predicted, and of course many fine nebulae in the south early at night. My adapters are in transit but should be here by the next viewing opportunity.

 

Working with Harry Siebert has been outstanding. His optics are in some of the finest observatories on Earth, yet he's extremely approachable, collaborative and efficient. He really does things his own way. I admire that.

 

A group of us are travelling to very dark skies at 4400' elevation early this summer, so I'll post my experiences (also with narrower filters) then.

 

Jim, being the true gentleman and scholar that he is (and a terrific partner in this project), will undoubtedly do thorough and reflective testing and reporting in the meantime. I'm sure he'll consider all the angles and give this project the best chance for success in the field. :)


Edited by Enkidu, 03 February 2019 - 03:28 AM.

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#46 jrbarnett

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Posted 03 February 2019 - 10:25 AM

Thanks for all the impressions Jim, the build quality looks fantastic! I hope you find more bino fits (and longer screws for the AEs). They look very nice on your Galileans.

 

This design could possibly have threads added to the adapter OD to attach a dew shield; is that what you meant above?

 

Our local sky is clear this evening, good conditions predicted, and of course many fine nebulae in the south early at night. My adapters are in transit but should be here by the next viewing opportunity.

 

Working with Harry Siebert has been outstanding. His optics are in some of the finest observatories on Earth, yet he's extremely approachable, collaborative and efficient. He really does things his own way. I admire that.

 

A group of us are travelling to very dark skies at 4400' elevation early this summer, so I'll post my experiences (also with narrower filters) then.

 

Jim, being the true gentleman and scholar that he is (and a terrific partner in this project), will undoubtedly do thorough and reflective testing and reporting in the meantime. I'm sure he'll consider all the angles and give this project the best chance for success in the field. smile.gif

HI Justin.

 

I hadn't thought about thread-on or slip on dew shades for the adapter bodies themselves, but that's a good idea,

 

I was actually noticing that the female threads of the filters (allowing you to stack filters) are exposed and pointing skyward in this adapter design, and figured that shades could be designed that threaded into these exposed filter threads. 

 

Thanks for the kind words, but I was floored when you invited me along for the adventure with these adapters.  I think you deserve the lion's share of any credit due as you had the desire and the drive to figure out how to get it done in a context where, if it works out well, it could easily be evolved and offered commercially to everyone interested by your prototype manufacturing partner. 

 

Nothing but rain for me all night and this morning.  Per the current forecast it's looking like Wednesday or Thursday before we get any real clearing.  That means that there's a chance you'll actually manage nebulae observations from Holland before I manage them from California.  So much for California's rumored endless sunshine.  :grin:

 

My first truly darker sky opportunity with these will be at the end of March.  I'll be headed to Arizona for a Messier Marathon, and figure I'll take the adapters and the 7x35s along to share with others as it's an organized event with many active observers.

 

And thank you for the opportunity to participate.  As for "Project Gilgamesh" (adapters for larger binoculars) the three screw attachment mechanism of these prototypes actually could work pretty well.  Unlike with smaller/narrower binoculars (the Galileans or any small roof prisms) where the screws have to be carefully positioned to avoid hitting body when you set your IPD, larger binoculars, especially Porros, have more clearance.  Fancy compression ring type attachment mechanisms are a neat idea, but simpler is probably better from a cost and manufacturing ease perspective.

 

I am going to try and fit in a trip to the hardware store today to find some longer screws and adhesive backed felt.

 

- Jim


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#47 jrbarnett

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Posted 03 February 2019 - 02:19 PM

The weather gods seem to think these are going to be fantastic...

 

:(

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#48 Crow Haven

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Posted 03 February 2019 - 05:55 PM

grin.gif That's a Good sign!



#49 jrbarnett

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Posted 04 February 2019 - 11:48 PM

I just got a call from a friend in Healdsburg.  There's snow, and lots of it (for California) on the hill above Healdsburg where our club observes each new moon.  We had intermittent hail storms today at work.  Tonight we may get snow in Petaluma.  The last time it snowed here (near sea level) was 2001.

 

These adapters with filters must be VERY good indeed.  grin.gif

 

https://upload.wikim...Chac0180Rot.jpg

 

- Jim  


Edited by jrbarnett, 05 February 2019 - 01:35 PM.

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#50 Rich V.

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Posted 05 February 2019 - 01:27 AM

I just got a call from a friend in Healdsburg.  There's snow, and lots of it (for California) on the hill above Healdsburg where our club observes each new moon.  We had intermittent hail storms today at work.  Tonight we may get snow in Petaluma.  The last time it snowed here (near sea level) was 2001.

 

These adapters with filers must be VERY good indeed.  grin.gif

 

- Jim  

Our Tahoe snow forecast called for snow levels dropping from 3000-4000' this morning to below 1000' this evening.  I guess they're right...

 

https://opensnow.com/dailysnow/tahoe

 

Enjoy the snow in the Bay Area! coldday.gif  Tahoe ski resorts all around the Lake have had 33-56" of new snow recorded over the last three days with more tonight.  Squaw Valley has had 299" this season so far.  laugh.gif

 

Rich


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