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Posts Made By: Ron Hranac

February 12, 2005 01:02 PM Forum: Coronado-Lunt-DayStar Solar Filters

The Sun Today!!!!!!!

Posted By Ron Hranac

Figures. It's overcast in Denver today (Saturday). sad

Tonight is the Denver Astronomical Society monthly open house at Observatory Park on the University of Denver campus. The forecast isn't looking very good for clear skies tonight. Even clearskyclock shows poor to fair sky conditions. Ever the optimist, I'm going to load up the telescope and accessories a little later, head to the park, and hope for some clearing this evening.

Ron

February 27, 2005 09:05 PM Forum: TeleVue

np127

Posted By Ron Hranac

It's tough to compare these two scopes. A good friend of mine has an NP127, and I have a TOA-130. We've had the scopes set up side-by-side at some of Denver Astronomical Society's monthly open houses, and both refractors provide truly superb views.

While the aperture of the two scopes is essentially the same, they differ in other ways. The Tak is 1000mm focal length (f/7.7), the TV is 660mm focal length (f/5.2). With a given focal length eyepiece, the TV provides somewhat lower magnification, wider angle views; the Tak somewhat higher magnification, narrower angle views. It's not unusual for both of us to put, say, 31mm Naglers in our scopes, pick an object to look at, make the usual oohs and ahhs, then wander over to the other's scope to see what it looks like there. Still oohs and ahhs. These APOs do not disappoint.

The Tak is bigger and heavier than the Tele Vue, so needs a bigger mount. I use a Losmandy G11, my friend uses a GM-8 with his NP127.

I originally contemplated an NP127, but would up getting the TOA-130. The only reason I got the Tak instead of the TV was availability. Frankly, either one would have been a good choice, and I'm very happy with the Tak.

My friend feels the same way about his NP127, of course.

Bottom line: If you're after a quality 5-inch APO, you'll be happy with either of these scopes.

Ron

March 2, 2005 08:44 AM Forum: Coronado-Lunt-DayStar Solar Filters

Mount for the SM40

Posted By Ron Hranac

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I usually mount my MaxScope 60 on a Tele Vue Tele-Pod. The clamshell that came with the MaxScope 60 mates perfectly with the holes in the Tele-Pod's head.

Every once in awhile I'll do a side-by-side on a Losmandy GM-8, with the MaxScope 60 providing H-alpha views, and a Tele Vue TV85 & white light filter providing white light solar views.

Ron

March 13, 2005 10:12 AM Forum: Takahashi

Budget mount for an FS-128?

Posted By Ron Hranac

I use a Losmandy G11 with my Takahashi TOA-130. I think the TOA-130 weighs a bit more than the FS-128, so the G11 will be more than enough for the FS-128, especially for visual astronomy. The GM-8 may work OK with the FS-128 (the GM-8 is not quite enough mount for the TOA-130), but others in the forum may have experience with the FS-128 and various mounts.

Ron

April 5, 2005 05:15 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

New 24mm Panoptic

Posted By Ron Hranac

I think you'll like the 24mm Panoptic, Floyd. I have two of them, and they spend a good deal of time in a TV Bino Vue. Of course, I've been know to use one of the eyeieces in "Cyclops" mode in my Tak TOA-130 or TeleV Vue TV85, which also works nicely. Great eyepiece!

Ron


April 7, 2005 08:55 AM Forum: Eyepieces

Eyepiece cases for big ep's?

Posted By Ron Hranac

I carry most of my eyepieces in a Pelican case. These cases are rugged, protect the contents nicely, and keep the elements out. Depending on case size, it's possible to also carry filters, barlows, star diagonal, finder, and other odds and ends.

Ron

April 8, 2005 08:45 AM Forum: Beginning Astronomy?

Good tripod case

Posted By Ron Hranac

Great idea, Robert. Thanks for sharing!

Ron

April 10, 2005 09:45 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

tipod (Vixen GP) tray with holes for eyepieces?

Posted By Ron Hranac

A local Denver Astronomical Society member makes a round eyepiece tray that is sold by S & S Optika (http://www.sandsoptika.com/). It's sometimes referred to by locals as a pizza plate, since it's about 14 inches diameter and 1/4-inch thick. It has 18 holes for 1.25 inch eyepieces, and 6 holes for 2 inch eyepieces, and is made from black plexi-glas or similar material. The tray fits Losmandy GM-8 and other equatorial mounts (I adapted one to fit my G-11, and a friend uses one on his Celestron SCT setup). Installation is typically underneath the mount head, between the tripod legs.

Ron

April 17, 2005 06:33 PM Forum: Coronado-Lunt-DayStar Solar Filters

Need a little help guys

Posted By Ron Hranac

I have a Sol Ranger on my Coronado MaxScope 60. It works as advertised, and is much easier to use for finding the sun than using the eyepiece.

I have Tele Vue's equivalent product--a Sol-Searcher--on a TV85 (this scope is sometimes used for white light solar viewing with a Thousand Oaks filter), and it works quite well, too.

Ron

April 23, 2005 11:45 AM Forum: After Dark

Nagler 7 or Nagler %?

Posted By Ron Hranac

Hi Bill,
Seeing conditions here in Colorado are, most of the time, pretty so-so. But on occasion we do get some decent atmospheric stability that, when combined with our dark and usually transparent skies, allows higher magnifications. Even so, seeing can vary quite a bit from one night to the next.

I found that having a variety of eyepiece focal lengths allows picking one that yields the maximum magnification seeing conditions will support. That meant biting the bullet and getting several eyepieces in short focal lengths. My short FL collection includes 3.5mm, 7mm, 9mm and 11mm Nagler T6 eyepieces, a Takahashi 5mm LE, and 14mm Radian (OK, this last one isn't really short...). No, I don't own stock in Tele Vue wink

Seriously, this eyepiece selection allows choosing the optimum FL for given seeing conditions (my main scope is a Tak TOA-130). Sometimes the 11mm is the shortest FL that can be used, sometimes a 9mm works fine but 7mm is too much, and other times the 5mm is best. On those rare occasions of really good seeing, the 3.5mm eyepiece can be used. The latter works out to about 286x, or about 57x per inch of aperture in the Tak.

If you get a chance, go to a star party and try some of the shorter FL eyepieces in your scope. You may find that you want both a 7mm and 5mm eyepiece. Alternatively, you could try a Nagler zoom (I think they're available in 2-4mm and 3-6mm versions), which would let you adjust FL and magnification to suit conditions.

Ron