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Posts Made By: Tom Pico

July 29, 2002 11:02 PM Forum: CCD Imaging and Processing/Solar System

SAC IVc Color CCD Camera ???

Posted By Tom Pico

I'm thinking time to try CCD but the prices are a bit much. I ran across an ad for a neat looking little CCD -- the SAC IVc -- for $219 at Digitech Optical ( Anyone have any experience with this camera?

February 12, 2003 06:10 PM Forum: Pictures of Me and My Telescope and........

Meade AR-6, Me & Son

Posted By Tom Pico

The mount is an A-P 706 on a Quickset Hercules tripod. Note the long dew shield from AstroZap. All in all a very satisfying set up. The boy's OK too!

February 12, 2003 06:15 PM Forum: Meade

AR-6 Before and After

Posted By Tom Pico

The photos show my AR-6 before and after AstroZap dew shield. What a difference! These AstroZap aluminium shields are well made, light and allow you to use the Meade lens cover. I'm a lot happier with my scope now -- take note Meade!!

September 15, 2002 05:40 AM Forum: Telescope Making

My Giro Knock Off

Posted By Tom Pico

That is a beauty -- let me know if you start making those for sale. I have a Giro 2 deluxe and really like it. The weight it can handle is amazing - I'm using it for a 6" f/8 refractor right now (the attached photo is of my first set up with a 4" Borg & 5" Apex Mak). Regarding tripods - check out the Hercules QuickSet. It is lightweight and solid and the elevating column is a real luxury.

October 17, 2002 11:47 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

High Power Eyepieces for Celestron 9.25

Posted By Tom Pico

Lots of good thoughts here. I find that my 13mm Nagler (at 180x and .45 deg true field) gives the most pleasing views all around and when I want a boost for planetary detail the 8mm Radian (294x @ .20 deg true field) is about as high as is needed. Frankly, I use the Radian more than my 7mm Nagler (335x @ .24 TF) -- (why I'm not sure, but the Radian just seems to fit better) -- and have not yet had good enough seeing to be able to use my 4.8mm Nagler (490x @ .16 deg TF). I suspect that you'll use your 12mm most often but if you want a higher power non-barlow magnification, I suggest the 8mm Radian. It is a very fine (IMHO) eyepiece.

November 2, 2002 10:45 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

C-11 eyepiece & accessories?

Posted By Tom Pico

Maybe I'm weird (OK, scratch the "maybe") but I find myself using my 17mm Nagler (165x w/.49 deg true field) or my 13mm Nagler (215x w/.38 deg TF) for 90% of my observing with the C-11. Except for planets these two are all I need. When I want higher power the 8mm Radian at 350x delivers. Occasionally I'll drop down to 103x (.66 deg TF)with a 27mm Panoptic, but really the 17mm Nagler is low enough power with the 11" - generally you go to lower power for wider field and increased light concentration but with the C-11 you already have plenty of light and the increase in true field isn't that much. To get a nearly 1 degree true field I can go with a 55mm Plossol but I very rarely do as I find the images with the 17mm Nagler much more pleasing. Only the 13mm Nagler can compare. Not that I'd toss a 31mm Nagler if I had one you understand -- I'm not THAT weird!
Maybe my preferences are influenced by having a Borg 100mm mounted piggy back on my C-11. The Borg with a 15mm Panoptic gives a 42x with 1.61 deg true field for wide angle views that the C-11 can't achieve.

November 6, 2002 10:32 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Reduce Effective Apeture

Posted By Tom Pico

Sure that works. Get a 6" f/8 refrector cut a 4" hole in the lens cap and you have a 4" f/12 refractor. You will probably have less color and since you are using the center of the objective, sharper images. BUT, you are still mounting and dealing with the weight and size of a 6" refractor. Thereby requiring a large and more expensive mount. The money saved for a cheap 6" is used for the heavier duty mount. You can get some very nice 4" refractors at a reasonable price and get good color correction, fine images and light weight. The light weight lets you mount your scope on a less expensive mount. The size difference between a 6" f/8 and a 4" f/6 is huge. I'm attaching a photo of my 6" Meade and 4" Borg on a Giro mount to give you some idea of the difference. Yes the Meade gains some size by being closer to the camera, but you can see that the diameter and tube lenghts are massively different with only a 2" diameter difference in objective. Think about it. Clear skies,

November 6, 2002 10:37 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

Reduce Effective Apeture

Posted By Tom Pico

Here's another photo with the 4" Borg and 5" Orion RFT opposite the 6" Meade. Here there is less perspective distortion but you can see that the size difference is still large.

November 9, 2002 10:21 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Eyepiece advice

Posted By Tom Pico

In 2" diameter the Nagler 13mm or 17mm w/82 deg. fov are winners.
In 1 1/4" the Panoptic 15mm w/ 68 deg. fov is very, very nice.

December 14, 2002 09:25 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Good refractor for under $2000.00

Posted By Tom Pico

A light weight 4" refractor f/6 or thereabouts is very easily mounted on a C-11 and allows you to compare wide angle, low power views with the view through the 11" -- I have a Borg 100 (non-ED) f/6.4 that I mount piggy back on my C-11 NexStar and I'm very happy with the color correction and crisp images that the Borg scope provides. Hutech sells the OTA for $777 - the finder is another $116 but is worth the money as it is an excellect optic. If you want to spend more they have an ED 100mm for just under $2,000.