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Posts Made By: David Simons

December 17, 2004 12:40 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

equipment dilemma- warning: long preamble

Posted By David Simons

Hi Glenn,

[COLOR="Blue"][SIZE="Small"]Standing in my driveway on good nights, M33 is a naked eye object. These new conditions triggered an amazingly time consuming trial of many scopes in search of an ideal combination that fit my budget. It was fun to try all that equipment though.[/SIZE][/COLOR]

M33 Naked eye !! ??

Go for the aperture ! Deep sky is now your calling. 12" minimum ! The cheap 12" imports will get you very far down the road. If your adventurous and handy with fixing scopes, the Meade 16" dob is an amazing deal. These scopes need some tuning up, but they really deliver the goods. There were a bunch of these at RTMC a few years ago, and the couple that I looked through gave sharp low power views. Some were only modified with new focusers and squeeked a little in azimuth, but really gave >deep< sky views. Yes I looked through the 20+ inch scopes there as well, but for the $$ the Meade could not be touched. Chances are you won't be needing a ladder either.

David Simons

December 18, 2004 11:04 PM Forum: Pictures of Me and My Telescope and........

Active Cooled C8

Posted By David Simons


Can you do a set for a C14 smile

I hope to see your rig at RTMC '05 !! It should be a good weekend.

David Simons

December 22, 2004 08:25 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Star Testing

Posted By David Simons

Hi Floyd,

I have the book also, but have not had the tenacity to plow through it yet. If you can figure it out and "distill" it down for the rest of us, I would appreciate it

David Simons

January 9, 2005 08:07 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

constant cloud cover

Posted By David Simons

Per Herberts suggestions, I just got in a set of Skunk pelts mounted on my scope along with a just received new-to-me 22 Nagler. These pelts work like .. well .. a charm wink

Low and behold the clouds are starting to part, I saw a handful of stars as I was driving home. I plan on doing some observing later tonight. I may have an extra set of these pelts, should I put them on the auction page .... ?


January 11, 2005 12:10 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

EQ mount for 10" DOB?

Posted By David Simons


Have you considered making a tracking table as opposed to a full blown EQ mount ?


January 16, 2005 10:47 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Re: Turning white LEDs red

Posted By David Simons

Hi Floyd,

Sometimes the voltage on the white LED's can be quite different than the red. The flashlight may fry the red one. I would vote for the red cellophane, or similar filter. Although with a voltmeter, it would be easy to measure the white LED's voltage to check first !

January 16, 2005 11:43 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Astromart forum member passed away... :*(

Posted By David Simons

Hi Mike,

Thank's for giving us the news. There aren't too many protocols for on-line only acquaintances, but I think respect for those that have passed on is universal.

I checked his web page link you posted, and the last line was really moving ..

[COLOR="Blue"]" More later. Presumably. "[/COLOR]

If nothing else, I would take this a reminder that we all are on borrowed time here.

Opportunities for relationships or unique efforts in our lives that may be taken for granted or ignored now, won't be around forever.

January 23, 2005 05:09 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Thoughts on the Orion AstroView 120ST EQ Refractor

Posted By David Simons

The Good:

Awesome wide field views. You can't really go overboard here, as the f5 ratio will handle even the 31mm Nagler with a reasonable exit pupil.

The Bad:

It ain't big enough. The ST150 blows it away. I'm patiently waiting for the ST200 (rumors from China).

The Ugly:

Although I have not tried the mount, it looks not quite adequate. Most comments about the color correction are right on. This scope is all about dark skies and getting lost in the star dust of the Milky Way. The big clusters near Sirius are great in these type of scopes.

February 2, 2005 09:48 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Inexpensive mounts..

Posted By David Simons

Hi Wayne,

Not sure if this has already come up, there is a new mount from Helix Manufacturing: Hercules alt-az cradle. I think these are about $200

Also, I made a simple pipe mount for quick looks and the cost was pretty reasonable, although I already had the tripod. So if you can get a tripod like a used LXD55 aluminum tripod, you might be able to make something quick and cheap like this.

February 2, 2005 09:55 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Inexpensive scopes with upgraded optics?

Posted By David Simons

Hi Joe,

If you have steady skies, the more quality aperture the better. Although I suppose tracking the higher powers in a dob may be tiresome after a while. If you get the 10" you might still be able to mount it on an EQ mount later. The 12" not as ea$ily. Tracking platforms may work also.

Steady skies, and a cooled down, collimated Newt. with a killer mirror should give awesome views. Floyd makes a good point about the diagonal, it should be high quality as well. There are lots of stories pro and con about plate glass mirrors, maybe I'm just being naive, but if someone like Swayze was able to figure the glass to his specs, then I wouldn't be too worried, since he surely has seen enough glass to know when he can use it or not.

I think if you have documentation, a Swayze dob should hold it's value.