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Posts Made By: Randy Roy

January 20, 2004 02:58 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Premium 2" ep

Posted By Randy Roy

Tom,

I have the 16" Starmaster and use the Paracorr for an effective F4.9. The 26 Nagler is the best eyepiece I've used in the scope (balancing best eye relief for the largest FOV for my eyes for my scope's focal ratio). The 31 is magnificent, but from a dark site I frequent, I was able to view the Horsehead recently with the 26mm Nagler, but not the 31mm Nagler. I believe the difference was primarily the more favorable exit pupil of the 26mm with my scope as well as the increase contrast due to the slightly shorter focal length. BTW, I was able to see it with the 22 Nagler, 24 Panoptic and 17 Nagler. I sold the 31mm and kept the rest. Had my scope been an F6 or greater instead, I have no doubt the 31mm would be a killer ep.

It sure would be great if you could do some comparisons before committing funds.

Randy

January 21, 2004 03:57 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

newbie needs help! does size matter?

Posted By Randy Roy

I have a 16" Starmaster which I find to be a good balance between portability and aperture. It is great for DSOs and planets alike. That said, if I were primarily interested in tracking down the very faint, relatively obscure fuzzies (esp. dimmer galaxies), I would simply buy the biggest scope I could possibly afford and manage, especially if you have really dark skies and a garage or other area where you can just wheel it out. Size really matters if this is your purpose.

For everything else, balance aperture with portability. Most of us don't have the luxury of dark skies and have to resort to taking our scope some distance to observe the fuzzies. For this, some degree of portability is necessarily a major consideration.

There are worse things for a beginner than buying small and upgrading over time to larger and larger apertures. That is starting off huge and never using the scope because of the setup hassle. I personally think something in the 8-12 range (dob or sct) is a great start for a beginner--but that is just me.

Best wishes,

Randy

January 23, 2004 01:28 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Tak FS-60C vs. Borg 76ED - which for camping?

Posted By Randy Roy

Also, check this out. I just reviewed the TV-60 for Cloudy Nights. I backpack quite a bit and plan to use this rig for that purpose. With a Hakuba carbon fiber tripod (these are quite inexpensive for CF), Bogen 3130 and scope, the entire rig weighs 8lbs, which is about my backpacking limit for a scope (considering up to 30-40lbs for the rest of my gear.)

Randy

January 31, 2004 04:44 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Sold Starmaster with the Mirror 14.5"

Posted By Randy Roy

Chas,

Things that, "Just ain't right":

1. Putting ketchup on a Filet Mignon.
2. Cropping a Van Gogh so that it will fit a favorite picture frame.
3. Parting out a Starmaster.

My worst fear was the Zambuto possibly ending up in someone's Meade Starfinder. I'd hate to know that it was glued onto a particle board mirror cell.

All is now right in the world,

Randy

February 14, 2004 02:31 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Your most used Eyepiece?

Posted By Randy Roy

26 Nag in the Starmaster
17 Nag in the N8GPS
24 Pan in the TV-60
13T6 in all of the above!

Randy

February 18, 2004 08:19 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Starsplitter prices

Posted By Randy Roy

I've seen Starsplitters and I think they are wonderful scopes. However, last year I they would not return my calls/emails. Contrast that with Rick Singmaster who personally answered the phone and spent an hour with me on the first call. I've said since there are two reasons to get a Starmaster: 1) Zambuto Optics and 2) Rick Singmaster.

That said, with a Starsplitter you get 1) above. If my experience was an anomaly then I am quite certain you would be delighted with their product.

Randy

February 19, 2004 03:42 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

If you could only have 3 eyep's

Posted By Randy Roy

Easy--Whatever eps would give me the widest field and a 4mm, 2mm and .5mm exit pupil for my scopes. At least 12mm of eye relief would be nice!

Randy

February 21, 2004 11:28 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

collimation tool for refractor

Posted By Randy Roy

Yep, place it in the focuser with the lens cap on the objective. It's best however to adjust just the screws on the focuser with this method to achieve optical alignment between the focuser and the objective, the source of most miscollimation problems with refractors. If there are easy to get to collimation screws on the objective lens assemby (i.e., you do not have to remove the cell to collimate the objective) then the cheshire works as well for that.

Randy

February 22, 2004 07:14 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Soft Case for Celestron Nexstar 9.25 GPS

Posted By Randy Roy

I use a softcase for my NS8GPS from casesandcovers and much prefer it to the hardcase (I had the JMI hardcase when I owned the N11). The reason I prefer it is just what you mentioned. The softcase is much smaller and less clunky than the hard case. It takes up way less space and the weight of the hardcase by itself is substantial.

That said, if I still had the N11 or one as heavy, I would prefer the hardcase simply for the wheels.

Randy

February 25, 2004 10:37 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Astomart-aholic - 10 Step Program ?

Posted By Randy Roy

In January 2003, my New Year's resolution was to be off the Top Astromart Users list. With much hard work and self restraint, I managed doing that after about three months. It worked for the rest of the year. Lately, I've been backsliding--you know, sneaking a sale here, a trade there. I just checked and aggghhhhhhhh!!!!!! I am back on the Top trades list. Do I have to go all the way back to Step 1 or can I return to some intermediate step. Someone stop me . . .pls. . . .

Randy