Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Any astronomy people here?  (Read 618 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
modulator
Newbie
*

Thanked: 1
Offline Offline

Location: STEYNSBURG - EC
Posts: 61
Referrals: 0


View Profile
« on: August 15, 2017, 06:58:45 pm »

If you are into astronomy, looking for equipment, pm me.  Need to sell a telescope to finance amps...
Logged
Sponsored
lindsmuse
Sr. Member
*

Thanked: 13
Offline Offline

Location: Cape Town
Posts: 974
Referrals: 0



View Profile WWW
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2017, 06:05:53 am »

Maybe try via ASSA - Astronomical Society South Africa?
Logged

So much music, so little time ...
modulator
Newbie
*

Thanked: 1
Offline Offline

Location: STEYNSBURG - EC
Posts: 61
Referrals: 0


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2017, 08:17:26 am »

ASSA is my next stop, not a member, though.
Logged
Wizard
Hero Member
*

Thanked: 29
Offline Offline

Location: Cape Town
Posts: 2,727
Referrals: 0


Neville Scott


View Profile
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2017, 06:47:50 pm »

If you are into astronomy, looking for equipment, pm me.  Need to sell a telescope to finance amps...

I was heavily into astronomy.
Even owned some really nice telescopes.
And regularly attended the Wednesday night talks at ASSA.

But ... I sold all my astronomy stuff to get into guitars
 Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy
Logged

Violincaster (DIY), Tele (DIY), Strat (DIY), Tanglewood TWF SPLE, 74 Di Giorgio Nylon, Guild Nylon, Elk-ish Princeton, Roland TD-10 V-drums
modulator
Newbie
*

Thanked: 1
Offline Offline

Location: STEYNSBURG - EC
Posts: 61
Referrals: 0


View Profile
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2017, 08:00:04 pm »

The telescope I have up for sale was a friend's in Pretoria.  He lived two houses down from a major road, then got hit with three new shopping centers around his suburb, so, no looking at stars.  Sold the telescope with the long-term dream of buying a good refractor.  Someday, but he still will have to travel 50 km to get to an observing site.  Being over 70 now, I doubt it will ever happen.  I am fortunate in that I enjoy relatively dark skies, but the seeing is usually poor, and these days, after a full day of activity, I have little enthusiasm left to go sit outside in the cold..  Living in Cape Town, I can understand you selling off "useless" equipment.


Logged
Wizard
Hero Member
*

Thanked: 29
Offline Offline

Location: Cape Town
Posts: 2,727
Referrals: 0


Neville Scott


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2017, 01:06:33 am »

It was a good phase & I learned a lot.
I learned that astronomy is done when it's very cold & while everyone else is asleep.
And that a star is still just a white dot at any magnification.
And that you can't focus with gloves on because your hands are too clunky.
And you can't focus with gloves off because your hands are too cold.
And that once you have a good telescope, you need a better mount; which you generally can't afford.
And that there is no limit to the GAS that attacks you - and the numbers get very bad very quickly.
And that it's really, really hard to get any decent telescope stuff in South Africa at vaguely respectable prices.

But but but ... I can report that actually seeing the rings of saturn yourself is a religious experience.
It always seems to come with the rather odd outburst of "hey - it's actually got rings!"
Very odd that everyone says that. Since we all know it has rings. But we all say that anyway. Very odd.

I initially bought a Stellarvue AT1010 refractor which got a lot of use.
Then I broke the budget and spent $2,000 on a 7 year old second hand refractor from a serious astronomer in the US.
It was a Televue TV101.
And the actual telescope had been used to photograph all the Messier objects.
I even got a copy of the book with the telescope.
Astonishing telescope.

Here's a link to the actual telescope I bought. And the book. And the chap I bought it from.
Note: I didn't buy the mount in the picture - it's worth much more than the telescope Smiley
http://www.company7.com/books/products/thenextstep.html

But ... it was too good - it was a bit too precious & I was too scared to use it often.

After which I read one of the most profound bits of knowledge:
"The best telescope is the one you actually use".

Which has become a general principle I now apply to all hobbies.
Only buy stuff you're actually going to use often.
I have vowed to never again to buy any equipment for any hobby that I regard as too precious to use.

I sold the Televue for my purchase price.
To an incredibly excited chap who couldn't believe such a telescope was lurking in South Africa.

So it all ended very well. Smiley
Logged

Violincaster (DIY), Tele (DIY), Strat (DIY), Tanglewood TWF SPLE, 74 Di Giorgio Nylon, Guild Nylon, Elk-ish Princeton, Roland TD-10 V-drums
modulator
Newbie
*

Thanked: 1
Offline Offline

Location: STEYNSBURG - EC
Posts: 61
Referrals: 0


View Profile
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2017, 02:58:00 pm »

You neglected to say "want to share with people who want to sleep/drink indoors/etc."  You are indeed fortunate to have experienced the Televue.  Even good eyepieces cost more than a basic "good" scope...  My favourite remains my wife's ETX 90RA.  One of the first ones, I bought it for her in a well-used, very secondhand condition for too much money (equipment costs too much anyway) with the Meade carry bag and stuff, a well used Meade 26 mm Super Plossl eyepiece.  Someone decided the scope was dirty, and proceeded to use a dirty rag to clean the corrector plate and diagonal mirror.  Severe scratches.  The mechanicals were well worn.  That eyepiece is my farourite, though, it says "made in Jap..." and is good despite some dirt and sleeks.  I spent lots of hours working on the ETX mount, altered the RA bearing system, installed new teflon rubbing pads, even had it a complete roller bearing unit at some stage, but that was not "solid".  Very portable, even with a home-engineered equatorial tripod table-top mount, and very good optics, despite the scratches.  If only one could get that tube new in a EC mount...  My main scope is an Alt-Az GoTo thing, working from a wheelchair I find the old German Equatorial mount a bit of a hassle.  Trade-offs all the time, hey?  But yes, a small scope is much more (cute?) user friendly than a large one.  Although, after I bought the to-be-sold scope from my pal, I lent him the ETX to use, he seemd to be enthused about a small portable scope, but after a while he gave it back, proclaiming that he has learnt "a small scope is not for me".  I had a good table-tripod to bolt it to, he did not.  Makes a difference.

I could never afford a good APO, my current beeg scope costs less...  As for mounts, yes, I should prefer a Paramount, with a suitable CCD thingie, and time to massage the digital info gleaned thus, but, no, life is too short to limit oneself to one activity only, and besides, when does one sleep if you spend nights out in the cold amassing images?
Logged
Wizard
Hero Member
*

Thanked: 29
Offline Offline

Location: Cape Town
Posts: 2,727
Referrals: 0


Neville Scott


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2017, 06:35:20 pm »

If I were to do it again, I'd allocate 50% of the budget to the mount.
A stable goto mount will actually point the telescope where you want it to be; and allow you to see what you want in a stable way.
If you can't achieve the above, it doesn't really matter how good the optics are.

Eyepieces are obviously equally critical to the light path.
I found the university optics ortho's were a good quality/cost trade-off for my budget.
With the 18mm a comfortable nice eyepiece to use.
The short focal length jobs with the tiny pupil just didn't work.
No-one told me that the floaters in your eyes suddenly come into play with these eyepieces.

The chap who bought my telescope brought with him a Televue Nagler eyepiece.
It weighs about 1kg; is massive, and is referred to as a "hand grenade" in the clique circles for obvious reasons.

They advertise it as having an "82 degree field of vision" - and I wasn't quite sure what that meant in practice.

We put it onto my telescope.
THEN I found out what it meant.
It's like putting your head inside the eyepiece & having a look around. In any direction. And looking at the sky.

And that was when I said: "You win - you get the telescope".

I bought a pair of good quality 8x42 binoculars.
Through a decent stable stand, or lying flat on your back on the grass looking at the sky ... that's a pretty damn good astronomical experience.

The same article that said the best telescope is the one that you use, concluded that the best telescope was a pair of binoculars.

On the other extreme it's fun to try out photography.
A friend of mine got a Philips webcam, performed the prescribed mods to give it a longer shutter speed, attached a peltier cooler to improve the ccd performance & took videos through his Meade LX-90.
He then processed the video through remarkable software called Registax
http://www.astronomie.be/registax/
and got astonishing results.

Through the eyepiece the image of Mars was wafting around in a smudgy way with the atmosphere.
When we looked at the image coming out of registax it was mind blowing:
https://photos.google.com/search/mars/photo/AF1QipPl8BeQxcp5cG8fbj-BhLJC5l6oF9Z0afkZyCLK












Logged

Violincaster (DIY), Tele (DIY), Strat (DIY), Tanglewood TWF SPLE, 74 Di Giorgio Nylon, Guild Nylon, Elk-ish Princeton, Roland TD-10 V-drums
modulator
Newbie
*

Thanked: 1
Offline Offline

Location: STEYNSBURG - EC
Posts: 61
Referrals: 0


View Profile
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2017, 06:44:03 pm »


I learned that astronomy is done when it's very cold & while everyone else is asleep.



Yes, and of course, light pollution messes up your view.  If you live in a light-polluted area, one could try to observe the moon.  But, hey, there is the sun!  It mostly shines during the day, when light pollution does not interfere, and it may be pleasant and warm,  but, no, during the day one has to go to work.... 

Attached a pic of sunspots now visible, took them 4 Sept. 2017, around 11:00.   I do manage to take a peek at the sun from time to time...



* 86Ca.JPG (361.51 KB, 1201x1172 - viewed 2 times.)
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to: