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Posts Made By: mary hofer

September 16, 2002 04:14 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

focal lengths and light pollution

Posted By mary hofer

I'm considering upgrading my scope from an 8" f/6 dob to an 8" f/10 sct. I've heard that the longer focal length makes for better seeing in light polluted urban/suburban skies. How much of a difference can I anticipate?

September 18, 2002 03:16 AM Forum: Home Observatories

thinking o' building

Posted By mary hofer

We may be building a 2-story building- small rehearsal room (soundproofed for musicians)on the ground floor with an office space on the top. While we're building, I'd love to put an observatory on the roof. All this is on the extremes of hypothetical, but what is the ballpark figure (yeah, right) to put a dome or a roll-top roof up? Why would I choose one over the other?
If I do it, I'm gonna get a bigger scope than my 8" Dob...

September 24, 2002 04:22 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

schmidt-newtonian vs sct

Posted By mary hofer

What are the advantages/disadvantages of the SN vs the SCT, other than cost?

September 26, 2002 08:21 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

How is an LX200 better than an LXD55?

Posted By mary hofer

I'm trying to justify the cost of the LX200 (esp the 12", but we'll see), but I'm confused by its advantages in design over the much cheaper Schmidt-Newt (alas, only goes up to 10"). For that matter, how does the viewing from an equatorial reflector (with added goto and tracking)compare?
Thanks- I'm sure this comes up a lot...

October 6, 2002 08:21 PM Forum: Deep Sky Observing

observing nebula

Posted By mary hofer

I spent a good chunk of last night in a place where I could just barely see the Milky Way, looking for the Crab Nebula, and I couldn't find it. I'm obsessed with trying to find the North American nebula too, and so far no luck. Shouldn't I be able to see them in an 8" Dob? I've got both the Skyglow and Ultrablock filters.

November 22, 2002 03:10 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

advice on software programs...

Posted By mary hofer

Anyone have any advice on which general astro program I should put on my Xmas list? Ease of use is important, as I'm not hugely computer oriented. For using mostly as a mapping and observing tool. Telescope interface would be a plus, but not necessary. I'm getting a new computer, so hard drive space shouldn't be problematic. I'm getting overwhelmed looking at websites for starry night, the sky, skytools, ecu, skymap pro...

February 4, 2003 05:41 PM Forum: Refractors

FS 128 vs AP superplanetary or TMB 130

Posted By mary hofer

More hypothetical scope-comparing...inspired by current ads on the classifieds...
The inevitable can of worms- what do you like?
Curiously, f/ratios range from 6 to 12. I'm up for visual, mostly planets...

February 20, 2003 04:21 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

travel scope

Posted By mary hofer

What's the biggest refractor that can still be successfully carried on an airplane?
I've been looking at 4 and 5" refractors. I guess there's no chance of an FS128 being carried on, but is there any problem with a fairly fast (f6ish)4"?
I want to go somewhere where Mars will be higher this summer...but the scope needs to be able to show some detail? Am I wanting the impossible?

March 26, 2003 11:36 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

flying with a FS102

Posted By mary hofer

Anyone flown recently with this or a similar sized refractor (4", f/8) lately? Problems with carry-on?

March 30, 2003 04:05 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

mount/tripod advice for Sky 90

Posted By mary hofer

I've really appreciated the advice I've gotten the last few times around about airline-portable refractors and the like. So now I've just bought a used Sky 90, with various accessories. Does anyone have any advice on a solid but airline-portable (checked baggage, of course!) mount and tripod? I probably just need alt-az, tho I am intrigued by the idea of putting it on a LXD55 EQ mount with autostar capabilities...