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Rig rebuild. Which system?

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#1 wxcloud

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Posted 17 May 2021 - 11:29 AM

Galaxy season is probably out the window for me with everything going on, in guessing by the time clouds and moon clear out and my work schedule and trying to be safe out doors at night, might get another quicky round if I build the edgeHD 8 for this really quick but I'm already looking towards nebula season and a slightly less bulky rig which I plan on controlling from inside (if my testing shows it's possible, got to do something productive I guess on cloudy days).

Mount will probably be the EQ6 R pro (I know, bulky) and refractor. Already thinking the AT80EDT might be the better option for this (480mm or 384 reduced). I'm thinking this because it might be a bit more robust to add an autofocus (zwo) kit to it) over option 2 which would be the ZenithStar 61 of which I also have the flattener and the flattener reducer (never did the math for this one). Probably just use a guide scope for either to lighten the focuser up on either and to have slightly brighter guide image.

Haven't decided yet on camera if I should do filter drawer to make OSC and mono camera swaps a bit easier. I do know OSC and emission nebula really disappoints the few times I've tried but do have l-extreme for it.

Biggest question I got for the rebuild is which scope should I kit out for this? The ZenithStar is a doublet but also can be reduced to wider aperture and focal ratio. Also has the advantage of adjustable reducer and flattener. It's also not the best mounted with it's center only mounting bracket.

#2 Hypoxic

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Posted 17 May 2021 - 11:36 AM

I have an EQ6-R and a 72mm doublet. My only input here for you is: if you're really serious about and liking this hobby, go triplet.


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#3 bobzeq25

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Posted 17 May 2021 - 12:22 PM

Galaxy season is probably out the window for me with everything going on, in guessing by the time clouds and moon clear out and my work schedule and trying to be safe out doors at night, might get another quicky round if I build the edgeHD 8 for this really quick but I'm already looking towards nebula season and a slightly less bulky rig which I plan on controlling from inside (if my testing shows it's possible, got to do something productive I guess on cloudy days).

Mount will probably be the EQ6 R pro (I know, bulky) and refractor. Already thinking the AT80EDT might be the better option for this (480mm or 384 reduced). I'm thinking this because it might be a bit more robust to add an autofocus (zwo) kit to it) over option 2 which would be the ZenithStar 61 of which I also have the flattener and the flattener reducer (never did the math for this one). Probably just use a guide scope for either to lighten the focuser up on either and to have slightly brighter guide image.

Haven't decided yet on camera if I should do filter drawer to make OSC and mono camera swaps a bit easier. I do know OSC and emission nebula really disappoints the few times I've tried but do have l-extreme for it.

Biggest question I got for the rebuild is which scope should I kit out for this? The ZenithStar is a doublet but also can be reduced to wider aperture and focal ratio. Also has the advantage of adjustable reducer and flattener. It's also not the best mounted with it's center only mounting bracket.

A few points.

 

Going remote was easier than I thought it would be, a good thing since it gets me out of winter cold.  I can't imagine doing the cold as much as I used to.  There are lots of was to go, I use a NUC at the scope, and Teamviewer.  That program essentially makes the screen and mouse and keyboard the same indoors as it would be out.

 

The AT80EDT will be a good choice.  You will lose some field of view compared to the 61.

 

The L Extreme and OSC work well for emission nebulae, but you do have to put in the total imaging time.


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#4 daveco2

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Posted 17 May 2021 - 12:31 PM

Galaxy season is probably out the window for me with everything going on, in guessing by the time clouds and moon clear out and my work schedule and trying to be safe out doors at night, might get another quicky round if I build the edgeHD 8 for this really quick but I'm already looking towards nebula season and a slightly less bulky rig which I plan on controlling from inside (if my testing shows it's possible, got to do something productive I guess on cloudy days).

Mount will probably be the EQ6 R pro (I know, bulky) and refractor. Already thinking the AT80EDT might be the better option for this (480mm or 384 reduced). I'm thinking this because it might be a bit more robust to add an autofocus (zwo) kit to it) over option 2 which would be the ZenithStar 61 of which I also have the flattener and the flattener reducer (never did the math for this one). Probably just use a guide scope for either to lighten the focuser up on either and to have slightly brighter guide image.

Haven't decided yet on camera if I should do filter drawer to make OSC and mono camera swaps a bit easier. I do know OSC and emission nebula really disappoints the few times I've tried but do have l-extreme for it.

Biggest question I got for the rebuild is which scope should I kit out for this? The ZenithStar is a doublet but also can be reduced to wider aperture and focal ratio. Also has the advantage of adjustable reducer and flattener. It's also not the best mounted with it's center only mounting bracket.

You mentioned "safe outdoors at night".  Not sure what that means, but it sounds like portability may be important.  It is for me, so I opted for a light weight system and got the CEM40.  Now, I'm thinking of paring down more with a CEM26.  Another factor, which I'm surprised came out of no where, is collimation.  I started with a reflector, super easy to collimate; but heard all the raves about refractors, so diverted to that path.  Then I discovered my ES ED102CF was out of collimation - probably because I couldn't handle the weight of the system, carrying in and out every night, and sometimes skidding it across the garage floor, jarring the scope in the process.  I found that recollimating the refractor was not easy, at least for me; and I'm still waiting for a clear night to verify the procedure.  My other refractor, from Germany, doesn't have collimation adjusting screws, and therefore needs to be shipped back to the factory if it ever needs collimation.  Bottom line, I'm thinking of going back to a reflector, which seems to me cheap and easy and gets the job done. 


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#5 wxcloud

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Posted 17 May 2021 - 03:33 PM

A few points.

Going remote was easier than I thought it would be, a good thing since it gets me out of winter cold. I can't imagine doing the cold as much as I used to. There are lots of was to go, I use a NUC at the scope, and Teamviewer. That program essentially makes the screen and mouse and keyboard the same indoors as it would be out.

The AT80EDT will be a good choice. You will lose some field of view compared to the 61.

The L Extreme and OSC work well for emission nebulae, but you do have to put in the total imaging time.

Sounds like the AT80EDT / reducer flattener is the way to go. The OSC, most emission nebula I tried where dim, I mean, the flamming star? Bubble? Yup pretty challenging for these skies and lack of integration time. Also at the time wasn't using the newer filters. I got one quick test in with the rig and l-extreme of m42 during some rig issues, got about 30 minutes of data, was a good start I suppose.

This makes me wonder if I should try OSC this year (the little bit of data I got on galaxies was fair also) and use a filter drawer and swap between possible emission nebula and use the l-extreme and switch over to the ir filter for more broadband objects.

Definitely think if I can run the rig from inside instead of sitting with the laptop outside would help get a little bit more data.

Forgot to mention I do have an asiair pro (barely been used but it seems to be more outside time set up) and a beelink u57 I think maxed out ram and storage (until I shove another drive in it, if needed). Haven't got it set up yet.

Edited by wxcloud, 17 May 2021 - 03:37 PM.

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#6 wxcloud

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Posted 18 May 2021 - 02:30 PM

Starting the equipment shuffle rebuild. Obviously some (more) equipment is going to end up in storage. I happened to glance at the 10 day forecast (previous 10 day, mostly clouds) and might have one clear (ish) night coming up on tab. I'm actually thinking it'll probably cloud up. Anyway kind of got me thinking with scopes being assessed for reassembling...

With limited sky time for objects that require hours of data to get, should I just dust bin dso imaging?

I guess I can go ahead and set the AT80EDT up as previously thought and give it a trial go. Try not to switch things around as I'm prone to doing.


//

I should mention if I go the nuc route I'll probably hardwire the connection. Do have ethernet crossover adapters and long ethernet cable.

#7 bobzeq25

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Posted 18 May 2021 - 03:31 PM

Starting the equipment shuffle rebuild. Obviously some (more) equipment is going to end up in storage. I happened to glance at the 10 day forecast (previous 10 day, mostly clouds) and might have one clear (ish) night coming up on tab. I'm actually thinking it'll probably cloud up. Anyway kind of got me thinking with scopes being assessed for reassembling...

With limited sky time for objects that require hours of data to get, should I just dust bin dso imaging?

I guess I can go ahead and set the AT80EDT up as previously thought and give it a trial go. Try not to switch things around as I'm prone to doing.


//

I should mention if I go the nuc route I'll probably hardwire the connection. Do have ethernet crossover adapters and long ethernet cable.

Shoot bright targets, forget about the dim stuff.

 

Get a reducer for the 80.  Requires less total imaging time.

 

What people do to get more total imaging time.  More than one night on a target, using platesolving to get back to precisely the same spot.


Edited by bobzeq25, 18 May 2021 - 03:32 PM.

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#8 wxcloud

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Posted 19 May 2021 - 10:09 AM

Yup, got the reducer / flattener for the 80mm, brings it down to 384mm, still a bit narrow with the asi533 for a lot of objects, but might be usable still. Will have to run to astronomy tools to get an idea for some potential objects and planning.

Still thinking on just using a filter drawer system and try my best to stick with one set up. Need to get the imaging train built and see if I can get the eaf installed and working.

I think in a lot of ways I goofed up by not sticking with a single set up and spent too much time rotating and changing things since outings have been few and far between.

#9 wxcloud

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Posted 20 May 2021 - 01:21 PM

Sigh. Making slow progress on this build. Of course the conditions are kind of not helping. Got the zwo eaf (12v) mounted. So far it was less stressful than the Pegasus I originally tried.

Next up the imaging train for it and I'm hitting that indecisiveness:
1600mm and mini EFW for luminance and narrowband and a wider fov and probably likely end up with only single (ha or lum data) anyway or just use the 533 and stick a filter drawer in front of it for uv/ir filter on broadband objects and switch it out for emission nebula.

Still also trying to decide laptop with long usb cable and no computer outside, raspberry pi with astroberry hardwired to ethernet or asiair which would likely keep me outside more and since wifi is not good on it or around the place, disconnects are very likely.

Still would like to keep the rig set up so when I pack it in, I keep everything pretty much wired up, kind of plug and play the scope and leave mount outside if needed.

#10 wxcloud

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Posted 14 June 2021 - 09:05 PM

And about a month later, the rig is sitting outside. Due to autofocus issues with ekos on my Linux laptop, I've opted to go asiair route and WiFi extender. Not sure this is going to work. I unfortunately have low expectations, it's been so long since I've been out, conditions are not great, it's hot and smokey haze. I see clouds on a supposed clear evening. Seeing and transparency supposed to be good by are standards but atmospheric smoke in the air.

#11 unimatrix0

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Posted 14 June 2021 - 10:48 PM

I have an EQ6-R and a 72mm doublet. My only input here for you is: if you're really serious about and liking this hobby, go triplet.

I got 2 doublets and that's it. I'm done with them, they are good scopes to learn and familiarize and practice, but they got their limitations  Even if it's the finest doublet ever.
If I ever to buy another telescope, definitely a triplet, or a quadruplet.  Or a RASA.  



#12 wxcloud

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Posted 15 June 2021 - 12:19 AM

And that was a failure. Managed to get a single 2 minute sub of the Iris nebula that wasn't utter garbage. Nothing but guide failure. I mean how does this thing lose at least 8 different stars in multi star guiding at 4 second exposures? First Dec went, I mean almost straight 45° down shortly after guiding starts with good numbers, like .60 then tanks to over 3. Something.

Think the mount is garbage. Ekos complained before with guiding. Scope was balanced in both axis. Didn't see a cable snag.

Ugh I'm so frustrated. After almost 4 months I get out then run into this. Almost seems like a mount issue. Maybe it's been the problem all along. Or maybe just Linux don't like it. I don't know.

I'm really very tempted to just hang the hobby up. Barely get out anyway. When I do it's mostly issues. Should have known something was up when I balanced the scope in RA and the dang zwo filter drawer slid out into the sharp grass first thing.

Only thing that really seemed to work was the router but only just. Didn't get a chance to test it as it was nothing but running in and out trying to get focus in the ball park with the eaf then guide scope. Not sure if that contributed to the guide issues. Probably didn't help.

Really really discouraged.


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