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Changes ...


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In the fourth October session I got out between 20:10 and 21:30. The conditions were above average until the inevitable blanket of cloud came. This session was a bit of a change in many ways. I’m physically disabled and partially paralysed on my entire right side. Since a recent seizure I’ve actually lost some range and dexterity. Which is why I tend to use my smaller scopes now. One of the smallest, yet versatile telescopes in my inventory is my Altair 60mm ED doublet refractor.  



It has excellent S-FPL53 glass and is ideal for rich field and high power planetary observation (it can easily achieve 144x). However, small scopes like the ‘Titchy Sixty’ really come into their own with 2” accessories.



I figured that I could add a 2” diagonal and at least one 2” eyepiece to my kit bag without a major increase in weight. The low profile TV adapter fits the Baader Maxbright like a glove and is truly a marriage made in heaven, or at least my back garden. It’s comfortable to use even with a tiny Takahashi 4mm orthoscopic.




I also changed my tripod/mount combination to a Vixen Porta II/TL130 combination. A tad heavier than the AZ5, but more robust and easier to manipulate for me. 




Porta II Shown with the ED72 above.




I spent the vast majority of the session with a 36mm Baader Aspheric for 10x and a whopping 6mm exit pupil. So I viewed a lot of open clusters, including Caroline's Rose, the Double Double, the Owl Cluster and NGC 663. I saw both Hercules Clusters and the Coathanger. One standout was Polaris and the 'Diamond Ring'. I haven't seen so many open clusters for ages. As the clouds were threatening my fun I decided to try a quick session on Saturn with the 4mm Tak ortho'. I stuck with the Maxbright (I had a 1.25" Takahashi prism with me) for convenience and was rewarded with a razor sharp Saturn, for a short while anyway. I rate the Maxbright for a variety of reasons, ergonomics for one, although I do also like the twistlock. Considering this was a bit of an experimental session I'm pretty hip with the outcome. I'll probably continue with this set-up. I originally purchased a Tele Vue 2" Everbrite dielectric for the Titchy, but it didn't play well with the 60 EDF's three screw visual back. My guess was that the undercut on the TV diagonal's nose was the culprit. So tonight's session was definitely a change, but I'm cool with changes ...


Edited by Nightspore
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I have always been an advocate for 60mm quality scopes, its surprising just what you can see with them and folks tend to forget that when caught in arpeture fever.

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Yeah, big time, or should I say small time? lol. Years ago I was told it was impossible to see the Ring Nebula with an ST80. Admittedly a lot depends on conditions and overall light pollution where you are observing from, but I can usually find it with the 60 EDF in my backyard. I understand aperture fever, it's easy to catch, but there are certain practicalities for me.  I would like to get the 102mm Starwave out more though.



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On 15/10/2023 at 20:04, Streetbob said:

Thanks for your report. A good read.


Thanks. I did ramble on a bit about equipment. 




I was tempted to try the Baader Zoom, if I could remember where I put the bloody thing! lol

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6 hours ago, Sojourneyer said:

I always like reading your equipment narratives Nightspore.  Keep them up.

I second that.

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8 hours ago, Sojourneyer said:

I always like reading your equipment narratives Nightspore.  Keep them up.

Me too

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