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Posts Made By: Rex Cox

December 19, 2005 11:33 PM Forum: Eyepieces

high power advice

Posted By Rex Cox

Hi folks. I own a Celestron C11. I am looking for a recommendation for a high-power Televue eyepiece to use with this telescope. There are two ways I'm considering going.

First, I would like a recommendation for a dedicated high power eyepiece. I was thinking along the lines of either a 5-6mm Nagler or a 6mm Radian. Which would be a better choice for my telescope? I think for an 11" CAT, 5-6mm is probably the most powerful eyepiece I should use for most seeing conditions.

Second, I was also thinking about something to use with my 2X Powermate. I have a 17mm Nagler, which gives me about 8.5mm with the Powermate. I'd like to push that up just a bit, though. If I were to use a 12mm Radian with the Powermate, that would give me 6mm, and it would also give me an in between point between 6mm and the 17mm Nagler.

Any thoughts?

Rex Cox

December 24, 2005 08:22 AM Forum: DVDs and Music and Books That You Recommend

Cream: Live at the Royal Albert Hall 2005

Posted By Rex Cox

I liked this DVD, with a few minor reservations. The crowd atmosphere was a bit subdued, and Clapton's guitar playing seemed a bit mechanical at times, but still sounded great. Ginger Baker and Jack Bruce look as if they've spent the last 30 years doing hard labor. Also, I wish that 'Strange Brew', 'I'm So Glad', and 'I Feel Free had been included in the setlist. Instead, 'Sleepy Time Time', We're Going Wrong', and 'Sunshine of Your Love' are offered as alternate takes. I think one take is enough.

In spite of these nitpiks, I still highly recommend this DVD. Clapton always sounds great (when doesn't he?), and Baker and Bruce haven't lost any of their skill on the drums and bass either. The songs have a fresh sound while still staying true to the original feel of the music. Overall, this trio still sounds great together, in spite of the fact that it has been over 30 years since they last played together. The camera work is well done too.

If you're a fan of rock music from that era in general, and of Cream in particular, I think you'll enjoy the show.

Rex Cox

March 15, 2006 01:30 AM Forum: DVDs and Music and Books That You Recommend

new Springsteen Live CD -- Awesome!

Posted By Rex Cox

I picked up a new CD this past weekend, titled 'Bruce Springsteen & the E Street band, Hammersmith Odeon, London '75'. This is the best CD I've bought in quite a long time.

If you are a Springteen fan, this is a *must have*. This is a complete concert, 2-disc set lasting over 2 hours. Although this performance was recorded in 1975, the sound quality is excellent--very clean, very tight. It sounds as though it were recorded much more recently. The performance is typical outstanding, high-energy Springsteen in all his working class, teenage coming-of-age and angst glory. He and his band perform many of their classics, but my favorite cut is on disc two, titled 'Kitty's Back'. The guitar and piano highlights on the song are absolutley electric. The song lasts for nearly 17 minutes, and never does it wear out its welcome! I would love to see a series of CD's like this released, similar to what's been done by the Greatful Dead and, if I'm not mistaken, Pearljam.

Very highly recommended!

April 16, 2006 04:52 AM Forum: AstroMart FAQ

Need help sizing photos for ads

Posted By Rex Cox

Hiya folks. I've taken some photographs of items that I want to sell on Astromart in the near future. They are fairly hi-resolution photos, so they would take some time to upload and download on slow connections like mine. Is there a way that I can make these photos smaller, so that they'll be easier to upload and download, but not so small that prospective buyers can't still get a good look at the gear? I don't want to needlessly use up bandwidth. I don't have any photo editing software on my PC, although I do have an older copy of Photoshop Elements lying around somewhere. I'm not savvy with this computer photo editing--I borrowed the camera I used to take the pics, so I felt that I did pretty good just getting decent photos. I need an easy, cheap (free!) way to do this.

Thanks for any help.

Rex Cox

February 17, 2007 05:32 AM Forum: Reflectors

can anyone recommend a good cheshire eyepiece?

Posted By Rex Cox

Hi folks. Can anyone recommend a good cheshire eyepiece for fine tuning the collimation on my 18" Obsession? Are they all pretty much the same, or are some better than others? Does anyone make a 2" cheshire, or does it matter?

From what I've been reading lately, a cheshire is a complementary accessory to a barlowed laser, so I'm looking to purchase one.


Rex Cox

May 23, 2007 04:35 PM Forum: Digital SLR AstroPhotography

DSLR's with picture preview

Posted By Rex Cox

Can anyone tell me if any of the DSLR's on the market have a picture preview feature for framing a shot on the backside screen before shooting a picture? I have been told that they don't, except for the Cannon 20Da.

Rex Cox

July 30, 2007 01:08 PM Forum: Eyepieces

Jupiter filter

Posted By Rex Cox

This was the most appropriate forum I could think of for the question I have. Can anyone recommend a filter for cutting some of the glare off of Jupiter without introducing an off-color view? I have an 18" Obsession, and I mainly use my 17mm Nagler and my 15mm panoptic along with a 2X powermate. A moon filter would cut out too much light. I would think a filter that cuts about 10-15% of the light throughput would work well.

Thanks for any suggestions.

Rex Cox

August 25, 2007 05:28 AM Forum: Eyepieces

Re: Cleaning?

Posted By Rex Cox

I spoke with Al Nagler a few years back, and he said that Acetone is perfectly safe for optical surfaces, and I have found that to be true. The stuff usually does a great job of cleaning, leaves no residue, and it won't eat optical coatings. BUT, Televue doesn't use plastic retaining rings in their eyepieces, and as another poster stated, Acetone will attack plastic. So, I don't use it on my non-Televue eyepieces, because on some of them, I can't tell if there is any plastic or not. I have also found that some kinds of smudges are cleaned better with alcohol for some reason. I use 99% pure isopropyl alcohol.

Use a pure cotton swab, don't over saturate it, and let the swab do the work in a spiral circular motion, working from the center of the optical surface outward--don't rub. Keep the swab moving and change swabs often. Like Floyd, I also use kleenex, and it seems to work fine. It seams to leave some paper residue sometimes when I use it, though.

September 19, 2007 09:31 PM Forum: ASTRONOMY

"Seeing in the Dark"

Posted By Rex Cox

Hey y'all, don't forget "Seeing In The Dark" tonight on PBS! My DVR is set.

October 19, 2007 01:07 PM Forum: Astro Binoculars

Celestron 11 X 80 Comet Hunters

Posted By Rex Cox

While at Okie-Tex this fall, I had an opportunity to do some observing through a pair of Celestron 11 X 80 Comet Hunter binoculars. The view through these binoculars was gorgeous. I don't know if I have ever used a pair of binoculars that had such sharpness over the entire field of view. The gentleman who had them said that they were sold by Celestron quite a few years ago and that they are no longer available new.

Is that kind of quality fairly consistent in that line of binoculars? About how much would a used pair in good condition go for? Does anyone else make a pair of binoculars that have the same kind of quality, but reasonably priced--something in the $200-$300 range?