Category: Equipment

Orion 120 ST Upgrade

I really enjoy my Orion 120ST.
It's the scope I use the most. This scope is a great performer on deep sky viewing.
But one of the cons is the focuser that comes with it, the stock focuser isn't quite smooth enough for easy high power focusing and you can forget about any sort of AP.

So this Christmas I got a 2" Crayford Focuser from Scopestuff.
It totally changed the life of this wonderful scope

 

This was a simple upgrade. All you have to do is remove the 3 screws then new focuser just dropped in.

 

New Computer

I did not like having to drag my laptop back and forth from the Astro Hut.

So we went looking on E-Bay for a computer and found a
Gateway Model E4600, Pentium4 1.3GHz processor, 512MB RAM, 37GB HD, 250MB Zip, DVD-ROM. 10/100 Ethernet card included!! for 40$.
While its not a top of the line, it is more then what I need!

I dropped in a:

    spare 60 GB hard drive
    a wireless card
    USB card

and am a happy camper!

Now comes the battle of installing all of the astro software from all of the computers…
I have to say that this is going to be one of the better upgrades to the Astro Hut I have done.

Telrad Or What

I have a 9×50 and can’t stand it as a matter of fact it was the very first upgrade I did to my Dob.
The Telrad is one of those things that when you get one and use it ……
HOW DID I GET ALONG WITHOUT IT

For star hopping it just can’t be beat.
There is a TON of charts, maps and software that use the Telrad circles.
The batteries last forever….or it seems like it. I have left my Telrad on for a couple of days and they went on for MONTHS.
My red dot finder does not come close. Leave it on overnight and the batteries ARE DEAD.
Some people think the Telrad as heavy and bulky….


You can see my Telrad, it is not as long nor as tall as the stock 9×50.
As for being heavy hummm it is heavier the the 9×50 but we are talking OUNCES here not pounds.
Bulky? I think it fits right in next to the 2? focuser

There will be a Telrad on all of my scopes!!!

 

StarShootII

I received my StarShootII yesterday! Whaooo

[photopress:StarShootII_1_2_3_4.JPG,thumb,pp_empty][photopress:StarShootIIa.JPG,thumb,pp_empty]
My first impression of the camera was how small and light it is, it actually weighs next to nothing!
The casing is made of lightweight plastic.
I installed the drivers and MaximumDL on my Vista equipped laptop without any problems all!
Here’s a picture of some Sunspots 20 minutes after the camera came out of the box!
[photopress:SunSpot1a.jpg,thumb,pp_empty]
It took longer to install the camera than it did to take this picture.
Overall I am pretty impressed and I think I’m going to have a lot of fun with little camera.

Rubylith

The other day I got a different type of Rubylith for my laptops.
I had been using Rubylith Acrylic Sheets while these worked good the new Rubylith worked a whole lot better!
It comes a heavy-duty plastic sheets that very easy to cut.
Its not as thick or as heavy as the Acrylic Sheets.
Since its not as thick I can leave on my laptop and close it with no problem.

it also works very well on lights and flashlights.

If you are still looking for Rubylith
scopestuff.com carries it!

Celestron StarSeeker 80mm

Update
I have only had a couple of clear nights to use the “The Little Dude”
but they were very enjoyable.

The Celestron Sky Align is very simple and fast to use.
I just pointed at 3 different stars and it came back with
MATCH CONFIRMED.
You don’t have to know the name of the star.
You don’t have to put it at a HOME postion.
You don’t have to point it North.

Just level it and pick out 3 stars and you are set!
What a delight to use.