First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

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First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby gmactelmac » Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:06 am

Hello to all, [:)] , I have purchased a Sky watcher Evostar pro 100ED + HEQ5 mount and was wondering is there anyone with a similar set up or maybe some one would like to give me some tips/advice etc. I am a newcomer having previously owned an ETX 125.(my first scope which I owned for 6 months,). I got very frustrated with this particular scope and all its troulbles, Maybe it was me!!!, I took a step back and studied form for a long while and eventually decided to purchase the above, mostly because I liked looking at the moon and planets and thought this one might be best.

Anyway, to report on the Evostar and the HEQ5 mount. The mount is nicely finished and everything easy to hand. Good quality feel to the Lock levers etc, The motors are extremly quiet, in fact you have to put your ear very close to the mount to hear them.. I found that the Altitude adjustment T-bolts very stiff, but maybe they will free up. Polar finder scope is very good. Everything about it feels right, This is my first EQ mount and I am impressed.

My first attempt at Polar alignment was last Saturday 28/01/06, the first reasonably clear night for ages!. It took a little longer to setup than the ETX, but what really surprised me was how solid and steady the mount is. Not a move all night.
It must have been beginners luck but every object I placed in the EP stayed there!! Brilliant!! It was really cold that night I went indoors to warm up, Saturn in the EP, and went back out 1 hour later and it was still there bang in the middle. That excited me more than the view!!

As for the Scope, I observed as much as I could, all the easy ones to find, Saturn was good at high and low powers , very good contrast with cloud bands just visible but I found it hard to distinguish the division, this confused me as I thought the clouds etc are harder to see. I was looking at Orion and spent a lot of time looking at, I think was M42, It was shaped different from any photos I have looked at, a bit like a cloud with a clear space with 4 and sometimes 5 stars in the clear centre. ??? Help on this one please.
M31 and its companian galaxy in my Telvue 32 plossl, still just a fuzzy blop though , Mars just OK, too far away I think. Stars were pinpoint sharp, I cannot wait until the moon comes around.

EP's used were the supplied 20 mm and 5mm, these were not very good in my very humble opinion, however I did use my Televue 2x barlow , Televue 8mm plossl, Televue 32mm, vastly different. I would very much appreciate advise on further EP's sizes please.

I found the Finder very difficult to use, most of the time on my knees to view through it. Is it possilbe to use a right angle finder or maybe a red dot finder ????
A big disappointment was no manual for theTelescope or the mount, however the manual for the mount can be downloaded.
I still have some bits left over from the diagonal and have not got a clue what they are used for.! In the package was a longer mounting plate, spanner for the mount and allen key.The Dust cap has a smaller centre opening, again I do not know why. Maybe I will give Optical Vision a call.

Next step finding objects?????????

I hope this was a little informative for any novice like myself .

Clear skys
gmactelmac
 
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby Chanctonbury » Wed Feb 01, 2006 10:23 am

Excellent report, thanks for telling us about it.

The HEQ5 is an excellent mount and I am not at all surprised that it tracked your objects well.

The Alt bolts are stiff and I am afraid they will not loosen up with use - this is because of the low mechanical advantage they have at their low set position on the mount. Make absolutely sure that you undo the opposing bolt adequately so they are not fighting one another! When adjusting the Az. bolts, it helps to svery lightly slacken off the main bolt that attaches the mount to the tripod and then re-tighten it when you have an alignment.

I have written an article on Polar alignment based on the original manual but correcting some errors and you may find it of some use:-

[url=http://home.btconnect.com/astro-site/polar_alignment.htm]http://home.btconnect.com/astro-site/polar_alignment.htm[/url]
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby gmactelmac » Wed Feb 01, 2006 4:46 pm

Thanks Steve for your comments and tips.

I just had a peek at your Web site and all your equipment looks very impressive along with your images.

Just one question, would it be possilbe to mount a Reflector scope and the Evostar 100 together on the HEQ5 mount , on a similar way to your setup with the Skywatcher 80T and the Skywatcher 10".

Regards

Gerry
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby Chanctonbury » Wed Feb 01, 2006 6:43 pm

Gerry,

A good friend of mine has mounted his Skywatcher 8" Reflector and his 80mm Short Tube Refractor on this mount with no difficulty. The 100ED is, of course, heavier than an 80mm ST but I would not have thought it was a big problem and if you compromised with, say, a 6" reflector then there really should not be a problem.
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby cumbrianwolf » Thu Feb 02, 2006 2:43 pm

Excellent to here the good write up i am also considering the Skywatcher mount but the big brother EQ6 version. I would advise a moon filter with your scope as other wise you will get white blobs printed on your retina.
Most disturbing although not harmful as i found out after panicking.
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby Chanctonbury » Thu Feb 02, 2006 3:33 pm

Wolf,

You will really like the EQ6, an excellent solid mount capable of carrying huge loads.
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby cumbrianwolf » Thu Feb 02, 2006 6:03 pm

I hope so as i want to do OAG deepspace photography with it.

I have burnt out two motors on my LXD75 mount!
So i guess its going to go for sale not sure yet though.
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby Chanctonbury » Thu Feb 02, 2006 7:10 pm

Wolf,

Are you going for the SkyScan version or standard version? I started with the standard version and then upgraded with the upgrade kit - in both guises it has been excellent. I even modified the standard version for autoguiding with great success.
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby Chanctonbury » Thu Feb 02, 2006 9:06 pm

Gerry,

[quote]The Dust cap has a smaller centre opening, again I do not know why[/quote]
I forgot to comment on this! The small cap can be used to 'stop down' the aperture of the lens. You place the full cap on the telescope and remove the small cap. This has the effect of reducing the F stop of the lens (although, of course, the focal length remains the same) which in turn will:-

(a) cut down the collected light (great for looking at the bright moon)

(b) reduce chromatic aberration in achromatic lenses which doesn't apply to this this telecope because it has extra low dispersion glass in one of it's elements

(c) increase contrast

(d) increase depth of field - of no use to an astronomer at all!
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RE: First experiences of a Skywatcher PRO Evostar 100ED + HEQ5

Postby gmactelmac » Thu Feb 02, 2006 9:40 pm

Thanks again Steve, I generally get the idea, all I can do is experiment ! What size eyepieces would you recommend along with my 32 plossl, 8mm plossl, plus 2x barlow. I have to forget about the supplied 20mm and 5mm, the view through them seemed very cloudy (for want of a better descricption.).

Also when will the cloudy condition go??? Its been like it for ages

Gerry
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