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Messages - George B Grimm

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Your post is in the wrong section regarding Crowley.
All Crowley activity is in a section near the top. It is the third section down. There you can find who and when Crowley events occur. There is a gate lock. As luck would have it with the CV stuff occurring it's been slow out there lately. I am sure Sean will see you original post and respond also 

A Telrad is the best ever money you could spend. And I have had mine since 2000. In fact I have 2 Telrads and 4 bases so all my scopes can use it. They work great on an SCT as they fit nicely. They cost about $45.

The 6SE and the BSE both use the same mount and tripod. I started with the 6SE and the got an 8in OTA and put that on the SE mount. Several in the club have done so. In truth the 8in is a challenge for that SE Mount in that it will vibrate more that the 6SE. It is livable however. Now however I fear the next "fever" might involve a camera. This is a challenge for the 8SE as it's length will hit the base at about 75 degrees up with a camera attached. Done it so many times it drives me crazy.

The 6SE is a wonderful setup. Take the entire setup outside in one trip. With the 8SE not so easy. I must remove the OTA to be really safe getting through doors etc. The 8in gets 78% more light. 

My recommendation is to buy the 8in. The 8SE is $1199.  However to complete your journey you can get the 8in AVX model for $1739. I say this because you will outgrow the SE mount technology and you wont be limited heading down the "astrophotography" money pit. Watch for sales on either model. I think August has sales coming up.

Take your time and use the 4SE .... find out what you want to really do. Fuzzy stuff requires Crowley dark skies and even in an 8in they are still fuzzy. Enjoy the solar system while the planets are out.  Jupiter changes nightly.

Hello Dave,

I have an SE scope. Before you go outside you can setup some of the key parameters and actually watch it slew about on it's own.
In order to be setup for goto operation you must enter your latitude and longitude of where you are viewing from and the current time in 24 hour format. The latitude and longitude will be maintained in memory even after you turn off the power. The time must be entered each time you power on. Currently in the east the stars Vega and Arcturus are excellent choices for a two star alignment. However you must know about where they are in the sky. There a several cellphone free apps for depicting the sky and naming the objects you point the cellphone at .... the most famous is Google Skymap for andriod devices and iOS has similar apps for the iphone. Point the app at a star and it will show its name.

Around 1030pm Jupiter is now really popping in the East. You can do a less accurate Solar System align on that but viewing it will be awesome. Look for it's moons also.

The latiutude for Sarasota is 27.3364 N ..... it's Longitude is 82.5307 W. As an optional method you may scroll down to the Time entry and hit the BACK button and you can walk thru menus to enter you location as a CITY .....

Everything you need to know is available from the Nexstar site

I always recommend a 2-star alignment but you have to know the stars you see above you. There are other options to align that require little knowledge .... here is that procedure I copied from the Nexstar site. I do feel however that knowing the major stars in the sky above you at any given time is just a part of astronomy not to overlook ...

Introduced with NexStar hand control version 4 (first included with the CPC) and available in all newer versions, SkyAlign is an entirely new approach to aligning an alt-az mounted telescope.  SkyAlign requires no knowledge of the night sky and as such is designed for beginning backyard astronomers.  In a nutshell, you set up the telescope, provide your location and the date and time and center 3 bright objects (you don't even need to know their names) in the eyepiece.  The scope is now aligned and ready to Go(To).

I have the same zoom eyepiece and it is just great for general viewing.

Email me at if stuck .....

I would add location as a big factor. Also it is a almost given fact that an 8 inch manual dob is the best teacher period. To use goto you need to know some basic skills like star names, latitude and longitude, celestial movement,  and things best learned at the $400 level before dropping $1000+ plus on a dust collector. Galileo did not have a goto scope. A absolute novice with an 8in dob, who, when they finally found Saturn will need no further motivation. They then can move more upscale with a hunger to learn. 

Hello Jon,
As far as directions go, get on Fruitville Rd and drive 15 miles east until the road just ends at the junction of Myakka Rd. Go right on Myakka Rd for 2 miles. The entrance to the Crowley Nature Center is on the left.

If you can get there early enough, at least by 6pm then you might get some help with your scope setup. Once it gets dark its just a parade of people walking through and looking through all the scopes. And it is so dark we have all we can do to keep our alignments.

So I say bring your scope. And if at all possible long before sunset. Others will respond to this I am sure and will be available. On the next weekend, the 24th we also have a function at GT Bray Park where more help will be available. 

Equipment Wanted / Re: Diagonal
« on: December 27, 2017, 06:34:03 pm »
2in is the way to go. If you don't get the model with the sct screw on you will need the 2in visual back. 
Ignore my comments about the focal reducer. The diagonal wont be used with that.  When the time comes to image with a dslr just make sure to get a 2in adapter for that also, else vignetting. I never owned that screw on type of diagonal and the more I think about it I think it not be a good idea as my eyepiece would be so close to the rear of the scope I would bang my head. So you can choose from any other models and with the slip in type it could be used on a refractor also.

Equipment Wanted / Re: Diagonal
« on: December 27, 2017, 09:12:38 am »
In searching for a 1.25 sct dialectic diagonal you know they don't make them.  So here is a real deal

I use agena alot.

Equipment Wanted / Re: Diagonal
« on: December 27, 2017, 08:47:43 am »
I heard you have a new scope.  It is an 8 inch sct?
I ask that because that would influence the type of diagonal you should buy.  If it is a sct then you should only buy a diagonal made for an sct with a screw on attachment. Not doing so and using the type that just slides in has the potential to scratch the glass of future attachments like focal reducers. On some SCT's with their local focal length aka high power  2 inch stuff just doesn't have the same impact as it does on short focal length refractors. I would get a nice dialectic 1.25 made for an sct. 

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