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Portable widefield rig


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Ive been wanting to get a dead basic widefield rig together for some time now for those nights when I want to image but don't have the stamina for full on telescopic imaging and for chucking in the van for star parties.


And so... tadaaaa here it is






Cheap and cheerful EQ1 stripped of dec axis and Manfrotto head fitted to the RA axis top, (required some drilleage, tapage and fileage).


I'm testing the drive motor at the mo, these aren't accurate but as I wont be using anything more than the 50mm for 1 to 2 minute subs Im hoping it will be OK for that. If not I will get the other drive with hand box, oscillator based and more accurate.



Edited by philjay
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Even though I was full of manflu last night I managed to get out for an hour or so to get the rig tested under the stars. After a few attempts I managed to get a drive rate which didn't trail too much so stuck with it. My daytime estimate of the speed was way off (don't ask grin.gif ) so I had to do it on the fly whilst having fits of coughing.


Anyrode I managed a dozen 2 minute subs with trailing at different levels. I wasn't going to do owt with them but Im bored with this forced convalescence so I decided to have a play.

This is from 9 of the 12 subs, no calib and slightly cropped. Im quite chuffed really, It shows potential as well as a bit of Lovejoys tail, heavily stretched to get the tail out



Edited by philjay
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Good dark skies you have there Phil. Will get my efforts up in a few days.

Would be really nice to have a light weight set up like that!

Well done.

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It certainly has potential once you have it sorted out. Some dark skies and you'll be turning out crackers.


Noel did something similar with a tabletop EQ1 rig at Belper, and turned out a stunning summer Milky Way.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I did the same with my EQ2 that I got off Damien (C/o Kim).

I found polar alignment the tough part without a polarscope.

Use my HEQ5 now with homemade dovetail.

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