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Old 30-03-2008, 04:56 PM
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PhilW
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Obs report 29 March 2008

I took the family to the Victorian west coast on the weekend. Normally the 14" is the first thing I pack when I leave town, but the car was loaded to the gunwales with spouse, kids, cat etc (do Camrys have gunwales?). A perfect opportunity then to take my new 4" F/6 RFT refractor, which is built around this Surplus Shed lens: http://www.surplusshed.com/pages/item/l3926.html.

I use it with a 20mm Antares eyepiece (2.3 deg FOV), and also a 13mm T6 Nagler (1.8 deg FOV). How would it compare to my usual light bucket? Pretty well as it turned out, although I found myself craving more aperture at various points.

These were some of the highlights from the evening:

- NGC 4945: the galaxy itself was very clear. I couldn't see the dark lane along one side though, which is easy in the 14"
- NGC 5128: the central dark lane was obvious with averted vision
- LMC: the cloud is brilliantly effective in a wide-field scope, and good structure was visible in the Tarantula

- NGC 2359 (Thor's helmet) & NGC 3199: I spotted both nebulae, but could not see any structure in either. They were only visible with averted vision.

- NGC 3766, 3532 and assorted other open clusters in Carina: these were all beautiful objects. 3532 is arguably more effective in this scope than a larger one, because it can all be fitted within the 2.3 degree field

- Omega Centauri: this was the other standout from the evening. The outliers were nicely resolved but not the core, and the wide field frames it very effectively
- NGC 362: it was clearly a globular, but I couldn't see any resolution.

Phil
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  #2  
Old 30-03-2008, 06:32 PM
Rob_K
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Welcome to the small-side Phil, LOL!

Nice report - sounds like lots of fun, a change and a holiday!

Cheers -
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Old 30-03-2008, 10:11 PM
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This is the winoscope doublet? Good to see it's performing.
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Old 30-03-2008, 10:18 PM
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PhilW
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Yes, so christened because I rolled the tube around a wine bottle, prior to riveting it. It was a bottle of red wine, hence the colour I painted it.
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Old 30-03-2008, 10:39 PM
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goober (Doug)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilW View Post
Yes, so christened because I rolled the tube around a wine bottle, prior to riveting it. It was a bottle of red wine, hence the colour I painted it.
Oops, yes, certainly not implying anything! Actually, I thought the tube was a fashioned wine bottle... must have misunderstood
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Old 31-03-2008, 12:57 AM
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Hi Phil,

Terrific report.

You wrote:

"- NGC 3766, 3532 and assorted other open clusters in Carina: these were all beautiful objects. 3532 is arguably more effective in this scope than a larger one, because it can all be fitted within the 2.3 degree field"

Yep, too true. The picture is always better with a nice frame around it and this is what a wide field does on these sorts of O.Cs. I think my favourite view of NGC 3532 was with a friend's Takahashi 106FSQ with a 35mm panoptic at x17 (I think) and a 4 degree field Dreamy! Neither my 12 or 18" can do NGC 3532 (or ones like it) justice in any way (but they do do other things well to compensate!)

BTW, you 'scope looks like a corker (Sorry). Sounds like a fun little project and besides the nice views it gives, it might prove a good little guide 'scope down the track ...

Only $79- USD for the lens -- a steal!


Les D
Contributing Editor
AS&T
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Old 31-03-2008, 10:20 AM
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I am always reminded of John Herschel's third observing note about 3532 when I look at it: "A glorious cluster of immense magnitude, being at least 2 fields in extent every way. The stars are 8, 9, 10 and 11 mag, but chiefly 10th magnitude, of which there must be at least 200. It is the most brilliant object of the kind I have ever seen."

I think my best ever view of it was in Doug's NP-101, with a very flat three-degree field. I can just imagine how effective it would be with four degrees.

S-S now has 127mm F/5.5 doublets for a mere US$119. Needless to say, they released these right after I bought mine. Of course, I would need to find a bigger wine bottle to roll the tube around.
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