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Posts Made By: Doug Peterson

January 25, 2005 08:21 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

GO-TO upgrades for the Orion Atlas mount?

Posted By Doug Peterson

Anyone know what's out there? Experiences?

I see that Skywatcher Canadian has an upgrade, looks like Canada only. Anyone know if they can be had stateside?

February 19, 2005 12:14 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

INTES 2" Ocular Turret

Posted By Doug Peterson

I bought one of these used, and it has an unusually stiff motion. It is not obvious how it comes apart. Has anyone fixed one of these?

March 25, 2005 05:20 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Celestron 130 Mak collimation--success

Posted By Doug Peterson

The rear plastic housing obviously comes off with three screws removed. Hopefully this will reveal primary collimation screws. The only thing holding it up is the focus knob: rolling back the rubber grip ring exposes a single hole, but I can't tell whether there is anything down there, doesn't look like a hex, phillips or screw to be removed, or whether the knob simply pulls off against friction (mine doesn't). Anyone tried this?

May 11, 2005 11:28 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Cases and Covers--a class act

Posted By Doug Peterson

Despite an extensive web-search, I could not find a soft carry case for my massive 120mm Chinese binos, due to the odd dimensions. Cases and Covers, an Astromart sponsor, and one-time supplier to Orion, does take custom orders. I am thrilled with the case I received, which was around $120 shipped. Frankly, that is a bargain for a custom order, not at all out of line compared to an off the shelf case. Recommended.

June 11, 2005 07:05 PM Forum: Lost Contacts and Personal Messages

Lance Freehafer

Posted By Doug Peterson

Where did you go? Check your spam filter.

June 25, 2005 12:47 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Vixen ED 80Sf Portable APO Refractor w/Porta Mount

Posted By Doug Peterson

I am in the process of checking out this brand new scope. The OTA is obviously a variant of the same now-familiar Synta tube that is the basis of the Orion 80ED and the Celestron equivalent. The star test is identical to the other two versions I have owned, which is to say excellent with no obvious abberations and very good ED doublet color correction.

The crayford focuser is really nice, the overall finish is classier, even the Synta tube rings some how seem nicer with the heavy white Vixen paint. The only fly in the ointment so far is a defective flip mirror system (astgmatism), but any diagonal will work while waiting for a replacement. Frankly a 2" diagonal is called for anyway.

I cannot believe a nice foam-fitted aluminum case comes with this budget scope. Have you checked the prices on these cases lately? Astronomical! It holds the tube, with cutouts for the flip mirror and finder. No oculars included, but a 9x50 finder is standard.

The PortaMount may be a dream come true: a compact, lightweight fork like the Tele Vue Telepod, but with dual axis slow motion worm gears, adding only about $350 to the cost of a complete scope. No wonder Al Nagler is now selling his scopes with this mount.

July 3, 2005 02:54 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

A Unitron 50hz/220V clock drive in USA?

Posted By Doug Peterson

Anyone know of a cost-effective way to directly go from 60hz/120VAC-in to 50hz/220V-out? I imagine the 120 to 220V travel converters that merely step up the voltage will not track correctly, if at all--I presume the Unitron drive motors are synchronous. With a 120VAC-to-12VDC converter going into a 12VDC-to-220VAC inverter this can be done in two stages for about 75 bucks, but is a little clumsy.

July 6, 2005 08:35 PM Forum: Refractors

The Thought Police and Semi-ED

Posted By Doug Peterson

On a non-Astromart forum noted for its heavy-handed moderation (is that an oxymoron?), the moderator has decided that all references to Semi-ED will be deleted with extreme prejudice, because the phrase is "meaningless".

Granted, call it exagerated marketing hype, Penn&Teller-esque you-know-what, even meaningless if you like. However should that not be for the members themselves to decide, rather than the Word from on-High?

Your thoughts please.

I think I'll go have a beer.

July 24, 2005 04:54 AM Forum: Eyepieces

Dioptrx and non-Tele Vue oculars?

Posted By Doug Peterson

I guess the question boils down to whether the large Meades or other oculars use the same rubber eyeguard interface as Tele Vue.


September 13, 2005 05:58 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Collimatable 1.25" diagonal?

Posted By Doug Peterson

There are several 2" diagonals out there, but anyone know of a 1.25" diag with collimation adjustments?