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Posts Made By: Rod Mollise

March 17, 2013 03:23 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Why I don't Post On CN...

Posted By Rod Mollise

For some on CN, collimation, not viewing, is the reason for having a telescope. I have tried to talk sense to them, but without too much success. LOL...

March 24, 2013 07:06 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

I just turned this down… WAS I RIGHT?

Posted By Rod Mollise

Wm Reed Lovick said:

A 12 year old 8" Celestron on an older manual but heavy duty tripod mount that was missing a knob or two and had three counterweights. The accessories included one Tele-Vue 11mm EP and
a small set of standard EP's, 2x magnifier, two sets of colored lenses, a 45 degree diagonal, 6x50 finder scope, etc. There was also a padded cloth case for the tube. Price was 350.00 firm.

What say ye?

It was actually advertised as 9.25" but the person measured the tube with the cover on it. The glass actually measured 8".

For 350, yes, you made a mistake if it was in good shape (and that's without knowing what sort of mount it was on). I'd essay a do-over, muchacho. ;-)

March 28, 2013 10:03 AM Forum: Reflectors

Criterion mystery

Posted By Rod Mollise

There were a couple of different "feet" styles. Doesn't make any practical difference.

There were the RV-6es and the RV-8s...and then there were also the Deluxe scopes. These were supposedly available in apertures up to 16-inches (though I've never seen a 16) and had fancier, heavier mounts, the pedestal + tripod, slow motions, tube rings, the gray tubes, etc., etc. Naturally, Criterion sold far more RV "real value" scopes. wink

April 17, 2013 03:22 PM Forum: Beginning Astronomy?

Meade LTX 90 PE Issue

Posted By Rod Mollise

Michael Miller said:


I am hoping for some help. I have a Meade LTX 90PE that was purchased used. It works well with the exception of the auto-align feature. When I try to use this feature it will go through the sequence of aligning itself but once it gets to orienting to the first star it gives an error on the HBX to "Check Mount" and then options to abort or "Go To" to continue. Problem is that at this point the HBX locks-up and will not allow either a "Go To" input or pressing "Mode" or any other button - I have to turn the unit off to reset it. It works fine on 2-star, 1-star and Easy Alignment modes - slews to stars, Go To works etc. Only problem is with AutoAlign. Any advice? Meade was not helpful - told me to send it to them and for $150.00 they would look at it. Would rather spend the $150.00 on accessories vs. repairs!. Thanks.

The first thing to do in these cases is to do a Calibrate Motors followed by Train Drives. Be sure to train in both altitude and azimuth.

May 25, 2013 06:41 AM Forum: After Dark

Celestron Edge HD 1400 Focusing issues

Posted By Rod Mollise

1. Make sure the mirror locks are disengaged.

2. Focus on a distant object--like the Moon.

3. Be aware that the primary moves by very small amounts as you focus and that its movement is not very obvious.


May 30, 2013 07:51 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

2" diagonal internal restriction issue

Posted By Rod Mollise

You'd have to use a very long focal length eyepiece or a fairly long one with a focal reducer for this to be a practical problem. On an f/10 SCT it is a non-issue. That's is why the "big backs" like the AP or the Eyeopener for the larger SCTs have no visible effect till you go to f/ls of eyepieces most of us never use--50mm and longer. wink

August 12, 2013 06:55 AM Forum: Solar System Observing

Refractor contrast vs aperture advantage

Posted By Rod Mollise

Larry Brown said:

I built a 6-inch Newtonian with a tiny secondary mirror on a curved spider. The increase in contrast over the old larger secondary was quite noticable. My 6-inch Newt outperformed 8-inch Schmidt Cas scopes at a star party (for contrast and detail), using Mars as the sample target. My question is, when does aperture become an advantage? Will I get better planetary images with a 9.25 or 11-inch Schmidt Cas (with 33% obstructions) than I do with my 6-inch Newt (with 12% obstruction)? By "better" I mean enhanced contrast and more planetary detail as well as sharpness. Anyone have any experienced with reduced secondary obstructions? Thanks!

Yes you will. The old saw, "Aperture Always Wins," still applies. A good C8 will deliver more on the planets.

August 12, 2013 06:57 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Celestron Power Tank

Posted By Rod Mollise

No more than about 12 hours for a well-discharged one. You can leave it plugged in and see what happens, but the Powertank is notorious for bad chargers. You are better off with a jumpstart battery from Wally-World, usually.

August 12, 2013 06:59 AM Forum: Mounts

Celestron avx mount @below zero

Posted By Rod Mollise

Rowland Hamly said:

Below zero winters in northern MN are the norm. Celestron tells me not to run the electronics in my vx when it is this cold. Are heaters available for mounts? Are there homemade ideas that work? Rowland

Your winters are so fraking brutal I'm not sure this would work, but what I've done at temperatures into the 20sF is to rubberband a chemical hand warmer pack to the HC.

October 5, 2013 06:36 AM Forum: ASTRONOMY

your most used scope

Posted By Rod Mollise

C8. Has been over the last 37 years, and even moreso these days when I am getting ever lazier about dragging out something bigger. It is the perfect blend of performance, portability, and versatility. grin