Jump to content


Photo

2013 - on a modest budget


  • Please log in to reply
47 replies to this topic

#1 Captain Tweaky

Captain Tweaky

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 211 posts
  • LocationSouthampton, UK

Posted 26 January 2013 - 10:39 PM

As the night skies in Blighty seemed to have turned a dark white for the duration, I thought I would show you what I intend to use once the black stuff re-appears. It would also be really good to see the equipment that others are - or will be using, so please add to this.

 

All my combinations are mounted onto a SkyWatcher HEQ5 Pro Synscan with extended counterbalance shaft. Because of carrying restrictions I'm a bit stuck with the HEQ5, so sometimes it is pushed a little over its recommended load!!!

 

My imaging camera is an Atik 314L+ with a Brightstar Quantum Electronic Filterwheel controlled by Nebulosity V3 on a laptop. My guiding is currently done with a QHY5 using PHD on a netbook. On three of the four combos a SkyWatcher StarTravel 80mm Achro is used as the guide 'scope.

 

1: For those dinky little far away dealies I have this arrangement:

 

Meade LX90 8in.jpg

 

A Meade LX90 8" F10 guided with the SW ST 80 and this does push the weight but at least it is short and seems to behave itself. I use this with and without a Meade f6.3 focal reducer

 

2: For small nebula, galaxies and detail an Altair Astro 'scope:

 

Altair Wave Series 115 F7 ED Triplet APO.jpg

 

Altair Wave Series 115 F7 ED Triplet APO F7 and this does have issues in any slight breeze!!! But as a 'scope I'm really pleased with it. For viewing it is really very nice and has re-awakened my interest in just gawping at the sky instead of trying to image it all the time.

 

3: For slightly larger objects this was the first refractor I bought not really knowing anything very much at all about this imaging business:

 

William Optics Zenithstar 80mm II ED APO Doublet.jpg

 

A William Optics Zenithstar 80mm II ED APO Doublet F6.8 and this is used without a Focal reducer or with a .8 Ikharos FR or .5 TS FR giving quite a flexible range of FOV. Blue can be a little tricky, but in general the colour control is good for a doublet.

 

4: And finally with a FOV across the diagonal of the 314L+ of 3.1 Arc Minutes using a .5 TS FR, this should just manage most of M31 and most of The Plieades - at least, that is the plan!!!

 

TS70 and ZS80 640.jpg

 

A TS INED 70mm ED APO Doublet F6 piggy-backed onto the ZS80 which is then used as the guidescope. I bought this at the end of December and it still has not seen first light!!!!!! Should I have paid the extra £200 and bought a triplet - time will tell!!!

 

The little ST80 gives some idea of the scale of the top three images. It looks so small on the Meade compared to being a similar size to the ZenithStar.

 

So there we have my curious little armory - I should be really interested to see what others are using

 

Yours aye - Cap'n


  • Andromeda likes this

Captain Tweaky

 

And if the dam breaks open many years too soon; And if there is no room upon the hill
And if your head explodes with dark forbodings too; I'll see you on The Dark Side of the Moon
 
My Flickr site for all my astro images - and other stuff, if you'd care to take a look!

#2 RickS

RickS

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 620 posts
  • LocationBrisbane, Australia

Posted 27 January 2013 - 11:58 AM

Nice collection, Cap'n!

 

Takahashi FSQ-106ED on Astro-Physic AP900 mount:

_DSC0752-X3.jpg

 

 

GSO RC10 on AP900 mount:

_DSC5358-X3.jpg

 

I also have an Orion Optics AG12 which is a new acquisition.  If the weather ever clears I will get outside to test it...

 

Cheers,
Rick.


  • Neil, Andromeda, duskchaser and 1 other like this

#3 Captain Tweaky

Captain Tweaky

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 211 posts
  • LocationSouthampton, UK

Posted 27 January 2013 - 12:38 PM

Very nice Rick - a new AP900 mount alone would be as much as all my equipment put together!!!!!! Sounds like you are having weather issues as well, but your surroundings don't look a lot like the UK!

 

Clear skies - Yours aye - Cap'n


  • Andromeda likes this

Captain Tweaky

 

And if the dam breaks open many years too soon; And if there is no room upon the hill
And if your head explodes with dark forbodings too; I'll see you on The Dark Side of the Moon
 
My Flickr site for all my astro images - and other stuff, if you'd care to take a look!

#4 Neil

Neil

    Administrator

  • Administrators
  • 1,493 posts
  • LocationThe Netherlands

Posted 27 January 2013 - 02:45 PM

Nice collection there, Cap'n & Rick, here is my person collection of telescopes, don't laugh!


This is the wide-field system used to take the recent images of the Heart IC1805 and the Rosette nebula.

IMG_0800.jpg

The BabyQ FSQ85EDX and the WO FD72 used as a guide scope.

For medium focal length work I have my very versatile TOA130F with focal reducer and extender Q, so its really 4x telescopes! Its most definitely my baby, my first Takahashi purchased when I was living in Japan.

IMG_0802.jpg

As you can see with the atrocious weather its been kept nice and snug in its padded carrying case.

Finally, we have the long focal length stuff and Mewlon 250CRS and a homemade carbon fiber newton based on an Orion Optic primary mirror.

IMG_0801.jpg

The Mewlon in particular has become a much more versatile scope with the addition of the baffled corrector and the new reducer which bring the focal length down to a much more manageable 1850mm @ F7.3. The newton is still experimental and will be used hopefully during the springto good affect, galaxy season!!!



#5 RickS

RickS

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 620 posts
  • LocationBrisbane, Australia

Posted 29 January 2013 - 10:31 AM

Very nice Rick - a new AP900 mount alone would be as much as all my equipment put together!!!!!! Sounds like you are having weather issues as well, but your surroundings don't look a lot like the UK!

 

Clear skies - Yours aye - Cap'n

 

Thanks, Cap'n!  The AP900 was one of my best "investments."  It's so nice to have a mount that just does what it is told.  In the past month we've had a heatwave and bushfires followed by floods.  Summer is usually pretty awful for astronomy here but this is worse than usual.  I'm just hoping for some cool, clear winter nights later in the year.

 

Nice collection of Tak gear there, Neil! My FSQ-106ED is my other best investment :wub:

 

Cheers,

Rick.



#6 Yoddha

Yoddha

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 11 posts
  • LocationSofia, Bulgaria

Posted 29 January 2013 - 01:59 PM

Here is my setup :) In this form I managed to use it only once :( so it is still waiting for the second light... There is also an a reducer that has to be tried :)

 

IMG_0936_sm.jpg


Clear skies,
Ivo


Takahashi TOA-130, WO 66SD, Takahashi EM-200, Unmodded - 1000D 350D, Modded & Cooled - 1000D, Modded 550D, APT - The Imaging Catalyst
Some of my images (2 AAPODs, 1 Published)


May the weather be with you!

#7 Captain Tweaky

Captain Tweaky

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 211 posts
  • LocationSouthampton, UK

Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:54 PM

Very nice to see these different set-ups, many thanks for posting. Please keep them coming!

Yours aye - Cap'n

Captain Tweaky

 

And if the dam breaks open many years too soon; And if there is no room upon the hill
And if your head explodes with dark forbodings too; I'll see you on The Dark Side of the Moon
 
My Flickr site for all my astro images - and other stuff, if you'd care to take a look!

#8 JNieto

JNieto

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 41 posts
  • LocationCambrils, Spain

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:20 PM

Lots of Takahashi enthusiasts here, I can see! Well me too, although I may have betrayed the Taka faith a bit as I just got a future replacement for my FS-102: looking for aperture I found a nice second hand Astro-Physics 130GT. Anyway, here is a photo of my current setup, still with the FS-102, sorry I do not have a better photo at hand. The mount is an ASA DDM60, and the camera a QSI683ws. Everything in a small rolloff shed in my terrace upstairs.33f5aa9c7b46d5ac4b73e41c3be3ce23o.jpg


  • Neil, Andromeda and duskchaser like this

#9 RickS

RickS

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 620 posts
  • LocationBrisbane, Australia

Posted 02 February 2013 - 02:57 AM

I'm sure the A-P will be a great scope!


  • Neil likes this

#10 miguelsp

miguelsp

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • LocationArgentina

Posted 14 February 2013 - 11:28 PM

This is my astrophoto setup.
La Plata is a place with enough light pollution, so I have to use anti-pollution filters

GSO 203 mm F4 newtonian telescope
Orion EON 80 Apo refractor (80mm F6.25)
Galileo Italy achromatic refractor (70mm F5.7) Autoguide ST4 port
QHY5T 3mp planetary camera Autoguide St4 port
Sky Watcher EQ6 Pro Goto
Nikon D200 10 mp
Lumicon Deep Space 2" filter
StarGuider BST H-Alpha Filter 2" narrowband 12 nm .
Celestron 2" OIII filter

Miguel

Attached Thumbnails

  • DSCF1168.JPG

  • Neil and Andromeda like this

#11 Captain Tweaky

Captain Tweaky

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 211 posts
  • LocationSouthampton, UK

Posted 15 February 2013 - 12:17 AM

A neat and business like set-up there Miguel - looks good.

 

This evening I gave first-light to my latest acquisition. Because the .5FR didn't work with the TS INED APO, I changed the 'scope for a TS 50mm APO Doublet F6.6/330mm - and it is small - in fact we're talking tiny - minute - midget, BUT it has the facility to take an SCT Visual Back and Rack-&-Pinion 'steering'  :rolleyes:

 

In the image below the 50mm is almost entirely hidden. The William Optics ZS80 is used for guiding with a QHY5 and the imaging camera is an Atik 314L+ complete with Brightstar Quantum Filter Wheel.

 

As it's getting late and I just dozed-off in front of the 'puter, so I'd better get a bit of a wriggle-on. The tubes in front of the 'scope are Oversized dew shields to keep out dew or water droplets and street light glare - and they really work!

 

Yours aye - Cap'n.

 

ZS80 and TS50-140213.jpg

 

 


  • Neil likes this

Captain Tweaky

 

And if the dam breaks open many years too soon; And if there is no room upon the hill
And if your head explodes with dark forbodings too; I'll see you on The Dark Side of the Moon
 
My Flickr site for all my astro images - and other stuff, if you'd care to take a look!

#12 kepler22b

kepler22b

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 95 posts

Posted 21 February 2013 - 09:49 PM

hahaha everybody is pulling theirs out i guess i should then.

 

7982282508_16aeb323e7_z.jpg

7982280390_8e4d99565e_z.jpg

8491127520_d59944f925_z.jpg

 

im thinking of selling the TS 90 Apo now that i have the pier and its too much for the cgem dx

the only way i could keep the the TS 90 Apo is if i sold it and the cgem dx.



#13 The rev

The rev

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 80 posts
  • LocationUK

Posted 25 February 2013 - 02:21 PM

Heres my 2, ignore the stuff around them it was taken as south west astro fair last year..
The one on the left is an NEQ6 mount with a C6 as my main telescopes with an SX H9 camera and a WOZ 72mm for guide scope using a costar camera.
The one on the right is an SE6 mount with a 5 inch amk-cas on it which I use an SX M9 and a star analyser on for spectroscopy.



#14 Peter Birren

Peter Birren

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts

Posted 28 March 2013 - 10:44 PM

As long as we're talking about "on a budget", here's my humble addition. The scope is a 1976 Edmund Scientific "Super Sky Ranger" 6" f/8 Newtonian that I rescued from a friend's garage (cost: $75 to recoat the mirrors, new focuser and secondary). About a year after getting it, I won a raffle of a 6" Hardin f5.3. After doing a fair amount of side-by-side comparisons, I gave the Hardin to my son with the Edmund mount and modified the Hardin tripod to take the f/8. Built the seat using old hang glider tubing, then built a balance beam tripod mount for a pair of 12x50 Meade binoculars.  The entire package stows quickly for the 100 mile trip to my favorite dark sky south of Chicago.

 

Tried to attach an image but no luck. Couldn't get the manual either. Oh well.

 

- Peter



#15 Carastro

Carastro

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 101 posts
  • LocationSE London/Bromley

Posted 29 March 2013 - 09:41 AM

This is my set up.

 

ED120 with QHY5 and ST 80 on NEQ6

 

wpe7367530.jpg

 

I also have an ED80 for the larger stuff:

 

wpb252f183_0f.jpg

 

and more recently I bought myself a Skywatcher 200PDS but only had a chance to use it once due to the weather.

 

 

 

 

wp1e337333.jpg


Edited by Carastro, 29 March 2013 - 09:42 AM.

  • Neil likes this

#16 Carastro

Carastro

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 101 posts
  • LocationSE London/Bromley

Posted 29 March 2013 - 09:47 AM

All housed in a Skypod, this is a photo of it on completion before I moved the kit in:

wpa4e22e7f_0f.jpg

 

As you can see in the Newtonian photo above I have also gone over to a finderguider, and lately acquired a CG5 GT which I thought would be useful for doing solar and planetary imaging instead of having to strip down the NEQ6 every time.  I then thought well why not collect RGB on one set up and Ha or luminance on the other.  So with the spare ST80 and mounting hardware and my planetary DMK21 as a guider, and having 3 scopes 2 CCD cameras (Atik383L and QHY8L) plus a Canon 450D, all I had to buy was a Hitech autoguider and adapt my netbook as a 2nd imaging laptop and hey presto I have two imaging rigs.

 

Greedy eh?

 

Just need some CLEAR SKIES!!!

 

Carole


  • Neil likes this

#17 Peter Birren

Peter Birren

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 4 posts

Posted 29 March 2013 - 02:09 PM

Tried to attach an image but no luck. Couldn't get the manual either. Oh well.

Got the manual. Here's my budget setup:

 

- Peter

Attached Thumbnails

  • Seat.jpg

  • Neil likes this

#18 klaatu2u

klaatu2u

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 283 posts
  • LocationPortland, Oregon, USA

Posted 29 March 2013 - 04:27 PM

Wow, if some of this stuff is on a modest budget, i am far poorer than I thought!

 

Here is my setup as is today, wich for me is 'spendy'.  FSQ-85, miniguider, Mach1 mount, SBIG ST8300M/FW8, concrete pier, computer and power supply cart. ROR obs.

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • FSQ85_obs_tel_pole.JPG

  • Neil likes this

Jim in Portland, OR.  Some images I've taken

14" Orion goto Dob that amazes me for visual, Lots of eyepieces, and a few binoculars

A few nice refractors and 8300M CCD with full set Astrodon filters 5nm Ha, 3nm SII and OIII -->Veloce RH200 f/3 on order :)

A 'ROR' and a concrete pier in my white LP zone backyard observatory where I image from (yes, in the city!)

TheSky6, Skytools3 pro, MaxImDL pro, Photoshop CS5, PSP7 with PhotoX2, many shelves of Guides, Atlas, handbooks, you name it...


#19 Lee

Lee

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 35 posts
  • LocationAustralia

Posted 09 April 2013 - 11:56 AM

I'll add mine.... 200mm F/4 newt with Atik-420, guidescope a 100mm f/5 achromat with DSI II Pro, Losmandy G-11 Gemini in my backyard ROR Obs.....

Lee

 

scopes 1.jpg

scopes 2.jpg


  • Neil likes this

#20 swag72

swag72

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 74 posts

Posted 14 April 2013 - 03:11 PM

Yum yum, here's my excitement for 2013.

 

A Tak FSQ85 atop of my HEQ5. This now has an upgraded Losmandy puck and saddle. The 314L+ is on the scope at the moment, but the 460EX will come back out for the summer. The 0.73x Tak reducer is ready to rock and roll as well!

 

Trutek superslim filter wheel, with Baader RGB filter, an IDAS for the Luminance and Baader NB filters. I am planning on getting the 3nm Astrodon Ha filter later in the year.

 

Guiding via an Altair Astro 10x60 mini finder / guider and a QHY5. All in all, a very satisfactory setup :)

 

BabyQ.jpg

 

 


  • Neil likes this

 

Sara ---> Check out my website at http://swagastro.weebly.com/

 

 

 

 





Thank you for your interest in our Astronomy Forum...
It looks like you haven't joined us yet?
Why don't you register to get all the features of being a member! Its free!