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Quick and dirty eyepiece tryout

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#1 jrcrilly

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Posted 13 May 2003 - 09:52 PM

I got a few eyepieces in and decided to try a very quick check of the new C11 under mediocre skies. I compared the 32mm Plossls from the Celestron $99 kit with a pair of 32mm TV Plossls, using the Black Night binoviewer, no OCS or Barlow, and the moon (didn't wait for it to get dark enough for anything else appropriate to the FOV).

I noticed right away that the 32mm cheapies merge more easily; I think because the eyelens on the TV Plossls is larger. Going back and forth a few times it got a little easier but the Celestrons always merged more quickly. Magnification and FOV was similar, of course, and there wasn't a huge difference in the views. I had the feeling that more details stood out after a period of gazing with the TV's but could find no one detail that was only visible in one or the other. I guess I'd recommend the Celestrons considering the price difference.

I also tried out the 19mm Panoptics - great! Very quick to merge, nice views. Both sets deserve a good deep sky test but at my location it wasn't gonna happen tonight so that will be another report.

I had a pair of 6mm orthos that look suspiciously similar and was hoping they would make a good bino planet pair - they did seem to match up pretty well but too much magnification for tonight so we'll see about that later also.

CGE performance was so-so; I could tell from the motor sounds that I didn't have it balanced as well as I had thought. Didn't have the Allen wrench with me (which is totally amazing, since there's a storage hole right on the mount for it!) so I didn't have it anywhere near polar alignment. Despite all that, it actually put objects in the FOV of a 13.8mm SWA and tracked well enough to play with eyepieces and binos on the Moon and Jupiter. :jump:

#2 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 13 May 2003 - 10:17 PM

Hi John,
You might be able to see Planetary Nebulas with a UHC or OIII filter even with the moon in the sky depending on their
position relative to the moon.I am able to see a few with my Nexstar8/BWOptics combo.I think Bob V might be interested
in your Black Nights performance on DSO's.Enjoy your new scope and clear skies,Scotty. :cool:

#3 jrcrilly

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 04:55 AM

Hi, Scotty.

Looking at my post, I see that I should have waited until I had time to do a better test - not much useful info in what I posted. I was just in a hurry to do a quick check on all the stuff I hadn't looked through yet before the stuff got too old to return if defective! I suspect the TV Plossls will begin to show some superiority on DSO's but the haze was doing me in.

Yes, the easier nebulae aren't too bad from here on a decent night despite heavy light pollution - last night the moon was lighting up the entire sky due to haze so I didn't even try any filters. I kind of lost interest in trying DSO's when M13 was barely detectable! I picked up the Orion UHC when they had them on sale but I haven't tried it yet. I have a narrowband from Thousand Oaks I never use because it's 1.25" but with the binos it will become more useful.

If I were a more experienced Moon observer I would have learned more last night but I tend to regard the moon as something to look at when I can't see anything else. I found scanning the surface of the moon with the binos almost dizzying - these things are great. I want to try Plato craterlets some night when I have more time - that's the only area I've spent any time looking at so I can judge the bino effect a little better. I have another 13.8UWA on the way and I think those with the 1.8 corrector will be a good high-power combo.

The next session should involve less wasted time putting new stuff together; I gotta find out where I put that Allen wrench (it was stowed where it belongs last time I remember!) and the roof motor sounded as though it was getting a litle loose from the wall when I closed it last night so I need to look at that during the day before I open it again.

I think I'll be able to directly compare the Black Night to the Denks pretty soon; my observing buddy is supposed to pick up his Denk binos at NEAF this weekend. I promise to do a better evaluation on that comparison. I really hope mine does as well as I think it will - the cost of another set of binos would require selling some of my Cyclops collection.

John

#4 John_Gillies

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 06:42 AM

"I would have learned more last night but I tend to regard the moon as something to look at when I can't see anything else."

Hi John,

Since I got the "Starsweeper" for my Denkmeier Standard, I now look forward to the Moon showing up.



#5 jrcrilly

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 07:36 AM

Hi, John.

It was enjoyable with the panoptics; I just meant I haven't spent enough time previously to really know what I was looking at... I suspect I'll spend more time on it now.

John

#6 rboe

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 09:09 AM

John;

"Looking at my post, I see that I should have waited until I had time to do a better test - not much useful info in what I posted. I was just in a hurry to do a quick check on all the stuff I hadn't looked through yet before the stuff got too old to return if defective! I suspect the TV Plossls will begin to show some superiority on DSO's but the haze was doing me in."

Been there done that. It's like buck fever. I did something similar with my NS11 the first time. Looking at M42 or Jupiter, can't remember; and the image started going to hell. Subtle at first then is was really washed out. I'm thinking what kinda piece of crap did I buy (first use with a SCT and I had read about the lower contrast compared to a refractor - my first scope).

Then I use my head and I think DEW! This is Arizona, but my brain doesn't have sycro-mesh so it takes a few trys before I really catch on. But I look at the corrector plate anyway. Looks great. I'm thinking " What the hell?????". So I look up. Clouds. I couldn't see squat. Look in the scope again; there was my object but very washed out. That scope was pulling in my object thru all that interference that I couldn't even see with my own eyes (now I'm thinking it was Jupiter). Very impressed, but bummed because I had to tear down.

But hey, new toys. Gotta get out there and use them! I think most of us have been there and done that. We understand. And keep it up! It means you still got the fire.

Ron


#7 jrcrilly

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 09:30 AM

Hi, Ron.

I've more than once been puzzled at diappearing objects only to look up and see that things have changed up there when I wasn't watching! At least I didn't have to tear down and haul everything inside - this permanent setup is going to make a very big difference for me.

One thing I noticed and forgot to comment on in the original post was that with the Black Nights I have the eyepieces are focused by sliding one in or out. The newer TV eyepieces have a groove in the barrel so they don't fall out as easily - this makes sliding 'em in and out a little clumsy. Might be worth watching for older models for this application.

John

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 01:30 PM

Scotty,

Thanks for keeping me in mind. I decided to go ahead and get the Denk Standard with Skysweeper and 2x Module. My reasoning is that the Denk has a few extra millimeters of clear aperature and I'll need whatever extra I can get since my scope is only 8". It will be delivered tomorrow so maybe I can try it out a little on the total eclipse.

John C.,

Thanks for the early review. I'll be very interested in hearing your comparison with your friend's Denk binos when you get a chance.

Regards,

Bob Veazey

#9 Ken Hutchinson

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 09:15 PM

I had a pair of 6mm orthos that look suspiciously similar and was hoping they would make a good bino planet pair - they did seem to match up pretty well but too much magnification for tonight so we'll see about that later also.


Most likely they will work. I ordered a Denk and three pairs of Ultimas the same day. I had a lot of fun trying to guess which would show up first. My fun was spoiled when they all showed up the same day :grin:.

However I had read long ago concerning binocular telescopes that a 5% magnification tolerance was acceptable for most people so I had a backup plan, just in case: a 20 year old 16.8mm Meade Ortho and a three month old 16mm UO Konig! I tried the "pair" out one night and they did work reasonably well. Can't say that they would be comfortable for a long observing session because I only used them briefly.

Ken

#10 rboe

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 11:10 PM

John;

Seeing your set up makes me think again if I can do something for myself. A permanent setup would be a great aid. But I can't help but think a new location would be the best move. A freeway overpass a block away with all those attendent light towers (wasn't here when we bought, and I was not in the hobby at the time either). Street light out front. If I buried it in the back yard I would be better off than putting it on a roof!

What kind of motor setup do you use for your roof? A garage door drive?

Ron

#11 Gary BEAL

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 11:20 PM

Hello all,
new here, with a bino viewer on the way. I will neglect to advise the make as it seems to stick in some folk throat. I have all the same questions on whether it will work or not, and what eyepieces to use, so have been the proverbial sponge with all the info. Keep it up.
Once here I will let you all know how it goes.
Regards,
Gary BEAL,
New Zealand

#12 jrcrilly

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 11:36 PM

Hi, Ron.

A better location would be nice but I just moved here because of the pole barn and the fact that it's 100 feet from my office. I finally decided to just do the best I could do from here. It's much darker in the observatory than on the ground because it's shaded by the walls. Doesn't help the sky but does permit my eyes to dark-adapt better.

I'm kinda proud of the roof motor. It's an AC-powered hoist from Harbor Freight ($60). It's mounted high on the east wall so the top of the drum is above the wall edge. I ran a cable from the east end the roof and wrapped it around the drum 5 or 6 times and then back out and to the west end of the roof. Simple & cheap. Always pulls the end that needs to be pulled and takes up the slack on the other end at the same time! I'll post a sketch or some photos later in case that description makes no sense.

I pondered a garage door drive but I didn't want anything blocking the opening on the inside and didn't want any mechanical parts outside. Now when it's open there's nothing there and when it's closed the cable is higher than the 6 foot walls.

John

#13 jrcrilly

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Posted 14 May 2003 - 11:39 PM

Hi, Gary.

They are very nearly as magical as people describe them. You will be amazed.

John


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