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Good Deal (X-Posted)

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  • Clifton Hipsher
    I was out today running errands and stopped by Home Depot to get some non-magnetic hardware for my LX5 field tripod.  The problem was the stop nut for the
    Message 1 of 12 , Apr 1, 2009
      I was out today running errands and stopped by Home Depot to get some non-magnetic hardware for my LX5 field tripod.  The problem was the stop nut for the 1/2" threaded rod was magnetized just enough to throw the compass off.  I got a stainless steel wing nut and a couple of stainless steel washers, so now I'm good to go.

      While I was there I checked out the tool boxes and found a real gem.  H-D has Husky aluminum attache style tool cases for $20.00, so I snatched one.  This case is perfect for storing my two hand boxes (Galileo and Meade), power cords, flash light, and various other necessities, and there is even enough room to store my 8" Thousand Oaks Solar Filter.
       
      Cliff Hipsher
      ICC USN (Ret.)
      '03 883 XLH
      I.A.M.B.K.
      Safety is NO accident.
      I Ride.  Therefore I am....




      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Wolvenstien
      Cliff, Other than magnetism messing with a compass, will it mess with a telescope at all? I know mine is plastic, aluminum, and hopefully some glass for
      Message 2 of 12 , Apr 1, 2009
        Cliff,

        Other than magnetism messing with a compass, will it mess with a telescope
        at all? I know mine is plastic, aluminum, and hopefully some glass for
        mirrors.. But I am curious.

        Also in your sig.. you have: "Safety is NO accident.
        I Ride. Therefore I am...."

        You ride motorcycle? What do you ride?

        Mike



        _____

        From: Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com
        [mailto:Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Clifton Hipsher
        Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 6:06 PM
        To: amateurastronomyonline@yahoogroups.com; MEADE-LX5-LX6@yahoogroups.com;
        sct-user@yahoogroups.com; Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [MeadeUncensored] Good Deal (X-Posted)



        I was out today running errands and stopped by Home Depot to get some
        non-magnetic hardware for my LX5 field tripod. The problem was the stop nut
        for the 1/2" threaded rod was magnetized just enough to throw the compass
        off. I got a stainless steel wing nut and a couple of stainless steel
        washers, so now I'm good to go.

        While I was there I checked out the tool boxes and found a real gem. H-D
        has Husky aluminum attache style tool cases for $20.00, so I snatched one.
        This case is perfect for storing my two hand boxes (Galileo and Meade),
        power cords, flash light, and various other necessities, and there is even
        enough room to store my 8" Thousand Oaks Solar Filter.

        Cliff Hipsher
        ICC USN (Ret.)
        '03 883 XLH
        I.A.M.B.K.
        Safety is NO accident.
        I Ride. Therefore I am....

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Clifton Hipsher
        Mike: It would take a major magnetice field to mess with the scope, so I wouldn t sweat it. My daily ride is a Luxury Rich Red 2003 100th Anniversary
        Message 3 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
          Mike:

          It would take a major magnetice field to "mess" with the scope, so I wouldn't sweat it.

          My daily ride is a Luxury Rich Red 2003 100th Anniversary Edition 883 XLH Sportster.  I also have a 1987 Yamaha Virago XV700, and I am restoring a 1977 XLCH "Iron Head" Sportster.
           
          Cliff Hipsher
          ICC USN (Ret.)
          '03 883 XLH
          I.A.M.B.K.
          Safety is NO accident.
          I Ride.  Therefore I am....
           
           




          ________________________________
          From: Wolvenstien <choochoocomm@...>
          To: Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Wednesday, April 1, 2009 8:19:29 PM
          Subject: RE: [MeadeUncensored] Good Deal (X-Posted)


          Cliff,

          Other than magnetism messing with a compass, will it mess with a telescope
          at all? I know mine is plastic, aluminum, and hopefully some glass for
          mirrors.. But I am curious.

          Also in your sig.. you have: "Safety is NO accident.
          I Ride. Therefore I am...."

          You ride motorcycle? What do you ride?

          Mike

          _____

          From: Meade-Uncensored@ yahoogroups. com
          [mailto:Meade-Uncensored@ yahoogroups. com] On Behalf Of Clifton Hipsher
          Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 6:06 PM
          To: amateurastronomyonl ine@yahoogroups. com; MEADE-LX5-LX6@ yahoogroups. com;
          sct-user@yahoogroup s.com; Meade-Uncensored@ yahoogroups. com
          Subject: [MeadeUncensored] Good Deal (X-Posted)

          I was out today running errands and stopped by Home Depot to get some
          non-magnetic hardware for my LX5 field tripod. The problem was the stop nut
          for the 1/2" threaded rod was magnetized just enough to throw the compass
          off. I got a stainless steel wing nut and a couple of stainless steel
          washers, so now I'm good to go.

          While I was there I checked out the tool boxes and found a real gem. H-D
          has Husky aluminum attache style tool cases for $20.00, so I snatched one.
          This case is perfect for storing my two hand boxes (Galileo and Meade),
          power cords, flash light, and various other necessities, and there is even
          enough room to store my 8" Thousand Oaks Solar Filter.

          Cliff Hipsher
          ICC USN (Ret.)
          '03 883 XLH
          I.A.M.B.K.
          Safety is NO accident.
          I Ride. Therefore I am....

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Joe
          TOM, I guess you got to do what you got to do. To read about how someone else dissembled a Meade LX200 go to
          Message 4 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
            TOM,

            I guess you got to do what you got to do. To read about how someone else dissembled a Meade LX200 go to http://www.astromart.com/articles/article.asp?article_id=524

            Looks like you are getting advice from two different camps that will never agree with one another. Me, I vote on the side of reckless exploration. I've noticed that luck and superstition often beats science and skill. While I've make a mistake from time to time, generally things work out for the best whether it be computers, telescopes, cars, sail boats, and other adventures and misadventures. I had a Meade 2045 LX3 that was a pig for years and all anyone told me was that it was a pig and to dump it. Well, the way I looked at the problem nothing ventured, nothing gained. I dissembled the scope and found the problem that made centering or to having the secondary mirror mount orthogonal to the plane of the corrector plate a matter of statistical chance. The fix was simple and now I have a fairly decent 102 mm SCT I've mounted on a DS2000 mount that is a super grab and go. However, I was willing to accept the possible outcome of a pile of junk before I started the task. The LX3 screwed together and its disassembly is straight forward and simple. The LX200 is another sack of potatoes.

            The next adventure I am thinking about is putting a Celestron C6S on a DS2000 mount/CG5 tripod. I've added weight to my current configuration to simulate the weight of the heavier C6S and the DS2000 mount seems to handle it with little problems. I have a newer version of the DS2000 that has actual roller bearings instead of a plastic sleeve. Mounting the DS2000 mount to the CG5 tripod is a piece of cake. The challenge I have is making an adapter for the DS2000 mount that lets me easily balance the heavy load of the C6S and accessories as I am sure the extra torque by an off balanced C6S would be beyond the mount's compensation capabilities. The worse thing that can happen is I strip some gears or burn out a motor; neither of which are a catastrophe as I have spares available. The best thing that can happen is that I end up with a grab and go 6 inch SCT which to me is worth the risk of damaging the mount.

            The way I see it, there are three possible outcomes from your endeavor; an improved scope, no change, or a pile of junk. As long as you are willing to accept the pile of junk outcome, go to it. The probability regarding which outcome actually happens is dependent upon your knowledge, skills, available tools, patience, confidence...., and that wee bit of luck and superstition that always seems to help. However, having said all that, there is a risk in what you are planning to do and there is a lot of truth to the old saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." You really ought to think long and hard whether or not the expected improvement is worth the risk of a pile of junk and if you do have the skills, TOOLs, and temperament needed for the job.

            Good Luck,

            Joe
            Sxinias Greece

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • tom_krajci
            ... planning to do and there is a lot of truth to the old saying if it ain t broke, don t fix it. Mirror flop of 5 - 7 arc minutes. When changing focus
            Message 5 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
              --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "Joe" <joe@...> wrote:

              >...However, having said all that, there is a risk in what you are
              planning to do and there is a lot of truth to the old saying "if it
              ain't broke, don't fix it."

              Mirror flop of 5 - 7 arc minutes.

              When changing focus direction, focuser knob needed to be turned two
              revolutions before focus would start changing.

              After you stopped turning focuser knob...focus could keep
              changing...by a large amount!...for five seconds!

              I call that broke.

              Now I find a ring of pig iron in the back. I'm glad I opened up the
              OTA. I will find other problems, and fix them. Many of them will
              probably be similar to the ones I found in the Celestrons I've worked
              on.

              --
              -------------------------------------------
              Tom Krajci
              Cloudcroft, New Mexico
              http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci

              Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
              http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico

              American Association of Variable Star
              Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
              -------------------------------------------
            • John Mahony
              ... It s an easy adjustment to remove slack from the focuser- see
              Message 6 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
                ----- Original Message ----

                > From: tom_krajci <tom_krajci@...>
                >
                > --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "Joe" wrote:
                >
                > >... "if it ain't broke, don't fix it."
                >
                > Mirror flop of 5 - 7 arc minutes.
                >
                > When changing focus direction, focuser knob needed to be turned two
                > revolutions before focus would start changing.

                It's an easy adjustment to remove slack from the focuser- see

                <http://www.g0poy.me.uk/Pages/Astro/Focusser/Focusser.htm>
                <http://www.mapug-astronomy.net/AstroDesigns/MAPUG/ImgShift.htm>

                > After you stopped turning focuser knob...focus could keep
                > changing...by a large amount!...for five seconds!

                Keep in mind the 12" has a heavy spring under the mirror, so the final focus move should be downhill (CW), not CCW.

                -John


                > I call that broke.
                >
                > Tom Krajci
              • tom_krajci
                ... The spring is following the pig iron ring into the trash bin. (But maybe I can use that iron ring as a door stop...so I may keep it.) I will clamp the
                Message 7 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
                  --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, John Mahony <jmmahony@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > It's an easy adjustment to remove slack from the focuser- see
                  >
                  > <http://www.g0poy.me.uk/Pages/Astro/Focusser/Focusser.htm>
                  > <http://www.mapug-astronomy.net/AstroDesigns/MAPUG/ImgShift.htm>
                  >
                  > > After you stopped turning focuser knob...focus could keep
                  > > changing...by a large amount!...for five seconds!
                  >
                  > Keep in mind the 12" has a heavy spring under the mirror, so the
                  > final focus move should be downhill (CW), not CCW.

                  The spring is following the pig iron ring into the trash bin. (But
                  maybe I can use that iron ring as a door stop...so I may keep it.)

                  I will clamp the main mirror into place and use an external focuser.

                  I am also making other improvements in opto-mechanical support,
                  ventilation, and reducing temperature induced focus shift.

                  You gotta take the OTA completely apart to do all these things.

                  --
                  -------------------------------------------
                  Tom Krajci
                  Cloudcroft, New Mexico
                  http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci

                  Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
                  http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico

                  American Association of Variable Star
                  Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
                  -------------------------------------------
                • Gregg
                  The motion of a main mirror in most SCT designs for focusing is about 50 times more effective than an external focuser s motion. So freezing the main mirror
                  Message 8 of 12 , Apr 2, 2009
                    The motion of a main mirror in most SCT designs for focusing is about 50 times more effective than an external focuser's motion. So freezing the main mirror in position may lead to an inability of certain accessories to reach focus, because an external focuser doesn't have enough range.

                    --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "tom_krajci" <tom_krajci@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, John Mahony <jmmahony@> wrote:
                    > >
                    > > It's an easy adjustment to remove slack from the focuser- see
                    > >
                    > > <http://www.g0poy.me.uk/Pages/Astro/Focusser/Focusser.htm>
                    > > <http://www.mapug-astronomy.net/AstroDesigns/MAPUG/ImgShift.htm>
                    > >
                    > > > After you stopped turning focuser knob...focus could keep
                    > > > changing...by a large amount!...for five seconds!
                    > >
                    > > Keep in mind the 12" has a heavy spring under the mirror, so the
                    > > final focus move should be downhill (CW), not CCW.
                    >
                    > The spring is following the pig iron ring into the trash bin. (But
                    > maybe I can use that iron ring as a door stop...so I may keep it.)
                    >
                    > I will clamp the main mirror into place and use an external focuser.
                    >
                    > I am also making other improvements in opto-mechanical support,
                    > ventilation, and reducing temperature induced focus shift.
                    >
                    > You gotta take the OTA completely apart to do all these things.
                    >
                    > --
                    > -------------------------------------------
                    > Tom Krajci
                    > Cloudcroft, New Mexico
                    > http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci
                    >
                    > Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
                    > http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico
                    >
                    > American Association of Variable Star
                    > Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
                    > -------------------------------------------
                    >
                  • tom_krajci
                    ... about 50 times more effective than an external focuser s motion. So freezing the main mirror in position may lead to an inability of certain accessories
                    Message 9 of 12 , Apr 3, 2009
                      --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "Gregg" <starryskyn@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > The motion of a main mirror in most SCT designs for focusing is
                      about 50 times more effective than an external focuser's motion. So
                      freezing the main mirror in position may lead to an inability of
                      certain accessories to reach focus, because an external focuser
                      doesn't have enough range.

                      I am setting up this scope for CCD photometry, and that's the only
                      configuration that I will use.

                      An external focuser will have plenty of travel for my needs.

                      This same setup has worked on the C11 and C14 I've worked on.

                      Mirror flop is greatly reduced, and the pointing models are pretty
                      good.

                      Yes, if you want to change optical configurations, then bolting the
                      main mirror in place probably will not work for you.

                      --
                      -------------------------------------------
                      Tom Krajci
                      Cloudcroft, New Mexico
                      http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci

                      Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
                      http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico

                      American Association of Variable Star
                      Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
                      -------------------------------------------
                    • tom_krajci
                      ... What say you about a scope with 5 - 7 arc minutes of mirror flop? How effective is that? Or am I simply supposed to tolerate that horrible performance? --
                      Message 10 of 12 , Apr 3, 2009
                        --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "Gregg" <starryskyn@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > The motion of a main mirror in most SCT designs for focusing is
                        > about 50 times more effective than an external focuser's motion.
                        > So freezing the main mirror in position may lead to an inability of
                        > certain accessories to reach focus, because an external focuser
                        > doesn't have enough range.

                        What say you about a scope with 5 - 7 arc minutes of mirror flop?
                        How effective is that? Or am I simply supposed to tolerate that
                        horrible performance?

                        --
                        -------------------------------------------
                        Tom Krajci
                        Cloudcroft, New Mexico
                        http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci

                        Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
                        http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico

                        American Association of Variable Star
                        Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
                        -------------------------------------------
                      • John Mahony
                        ... 5 -7 is not great, but not horrible either compared to some commercial SCTs I ve seen. I think they ve gotten better at this over the years. A few years
                        Message 11 of 12 , Apr 3, 2009
                          ----- Original Message ----

                          > From: tom_krajci <tom_krajci@...>
                          >
                          > --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, "Gregg" wrote:
                          > >
                          > > The motion of a main mirror in most SCT designs for focusing is
                          > > about 50 times more effective than an external focuser's motion.
                          > > So freezing the main mirror in position may lead to an inability of
                          > > certain accessories to reach focus, because an external focuser
                          > > doesn't have enough range.
                          >
                          > What say you about a scope with 5 - 7 arc minutes of mirror flop?
                          > How effective is that? Or am I simply supposed to tolerate that
                          > horrible performance?

                          5'-7' is not great, but not horrible either compared to some commercial SCTs I've seen. I think they've gotten better at this over the years.

                          A few years back, sometime after Meade introduced the LX200GPS with the mirror lock, Celestron started claiming that their mirror slider tubes were "hand honed" to such high precision that a mirror lock wasn't needed. But I haven't heard any Celestron owners singing the praises of how stable their mirrors are.

                          BTW the term "mirror flop" usually means when the mirror shifts during a long exposure, but in an earlier message I got the impression you were talking about "image shift" when changing the focuser direction. Basically the same root cause, but different names.

                          -John
                        • tom_krajci
                          ... commercial SCTs I ve seen. Are you gonna be happy? It depends on your standards. If you plunk down your SCT/computerized mount...do a hasty level, point
                          Message 12 of 12 , Apr 4, 2009
                            --- In Meade-Uncensored@yahoogroups.com, John Mahony <jmmahony@...> wrote:

                            > > What say you about a scope with 5 - 7 arc minutes of mirror flop?
                            > > How effective is that? Or am I simply supposed to tolerate that
                            > > horrible performance?
                            >
                            > 5'-7' is not great, but not horrible either compared to some
                            commercial SCTs I've seen.

                            Are you gonna be happy? It depends on your standards.

                            If you plunk down your SCT/computerized mount...do a hasty level,
                            point north, two star alignment...pop in an ultra-wide very low power
                            eyepiece...slew to some titanic target like M42 or M31...and at least
                            some part of the object appears somewhere in the field of view...you
                            might say "This scope works great!"

                            My 10-inch dob, with a protractor on the elevation trunnion, a tape
                            measure wrapped around the base, and a 286 computer converting
                            coordinates to Protractor/tape-measure values...points better than
                            that.

                            My plywood 16-inch dob, with home-made, molded worm gears, stepper
                            motors and a 486 laptop...points far better than that.

                            Those were scopes I made in a wood shop...tolerances of about 1/32 if
                            I was having a good day. Made from inexpensive materials, like B/C
                            external grade plywood.

                            These SCT's are commercial scopes, machined metal (much higher
                            precision, yes?)...made by a company that specializes in scopes, and
                            has made tens (hundreds?) of thousands over the years.

                            I'm not impressed with Meade.

                            >I think they've gotten better at this over the years.

                            I haven't studied enough scopes to say either way. But I do know
                            that there is a tremendous variability in quality of
                            assembly/adjustment. There is an average quality value...but a
                            tremendous scatter about that average value.

                            > A few years back, sometime after Meade introduced the LX200GPS with
                            the mirror lock, Celestron started claiming that their mirror slider
                            tubes were "hand honed" to such high precision that a mirror lock
                            wasn't needed. But I haven't heard any Celestron owners singing the
                            praises of how stable their mirrors are.

                            Not enough folks are doing objective assessments of scope
                            performance. Most of it is anecdotal evidence, passed on
                            third-hand. It's hard to draw firm conclusions about anything.

                            I hear the same thing up here in the mountains:
                            - the woolly bear caterpillar bands tell me it will be a snowy winter
                            - that jar of bear grease is bubbling in a way that tells me it will
                            be a dry, but cold winter.

                            Oh, my aching head.

                            Most folks run their mouths...and don't bother to check back to see
                            if their predictions were accurate.

                            > BTW the term "mirror flop" usually means when the mirror shifts
                            during a long exposure, but in an earlier message I got the
                            impression you were talking about "image shift" when changing the
                            focuser direction. Basically the same root cause, but different
                            names.

                            I don't want the mirror to move, or focus to shift over the course of
                            the night. Various causes:

                            - not very stiff focuser assembly
                            - gap between baffle tube and mirror cell tube
                            - no hard points to hold mirror in one place in its cell
                            - mirror supported at wrong location
                            - tube made of high-expansion aluminum

                            And probably a few others.

                            They all need to be assessed and addressed...no matter what name you give them.

                            --
                            -------------------------------------------
                            Tom Krajci
                            Cloudcroft, New Mexico
                            http://picasaweb.google.com/tom.krajci

                            Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA)
                            http://cbastro.org/ CBA New Mexico

                            American Association of Variable Star
                            Observers (AAVSO): KTC http://www.aavso.org/
                            -------------------------------------------
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