Conlin Hill Observatory -- 42° 7' N, 71° 54' W



Equipment List  


Optics
 
Meade LX200 10" 10" F10 Schmidt Cassegrain Reflector Lot's of light gathering ability and super high magnification that's awesome for solar system objects. Highly accurate and with smooth controls - this is one nice telescope. Purchased used on AstroMart.
Accessories:

Dew shield, JMB Class "A" 10" solar filter

Losmandy counterweight system and Losmandy dovetail plate for mounting the ETX90. Collimation Thumbscrews for 10" SCT.

Meade F6.3 Focual Reducer / Field Flattener, Ted Agos reducer adapter, JMI NGF-S Motorized Focuser for SCTs, Meade Super Wedge - these are all must have's for imaging with the LX200!

   

Orion 15x63 Mini-Giant Binoculars Click here to see the pipe Mount

This fantastic device makes using the Binos easy and comfortable, highly recommended!

Meade ETX 90 90mm F13 Maksutov Cassegrain Reflector Mounted piggy back on the LX200 for use as a guide scope. Purchased used on AstroMart.

The dew shield is home-made from closed cell foam padding and duct tape - looks bad, works good.

The cheesey rings and rail shown in this picture have since been replaced with a very solid Losmandy dovetail plate and dovetail rings.

Meade ETX 70 70mm F5 Achromat Refractor with AutoStar controller My first telescope, great for starters. I still use it on a regular basis. Depending on your browser, you're probably listening to it track right now...
Accessories:

Flexifocus focus knob replacement from ScopeTronics, a must have.

Dew shield, Meade #124 2X Barlow, Meade #128 3X Barlow, JMB Class "A" 70mm solar filters

   

Eyepieces
  Meade 12mm Illuminated Reticle, 9mm MA, 15mm Plössl, 25mm MA, 26mm Plössl, 40mm Plössl The light on the reticle eyepiece stopped working about 6 weeks after I bought it! I still use it, shining a dim red light onto the opening as needed. I got the 15mm and 40mm Plössls from Scopetronix, the other eyepieces came with the various telescopes. It's a threadbare collection, I really could use some better eyepieces but I spend so much time imaging that I can't justify the cost.
 

Cameras

* My
Techniques page has more info on the use of these CCD cameras.
2/28/03

SBIG ST-8i

Kodak KAF-1600 chip, 9x9 micron pixels 13.8x9.2mm area. Full well = 100,000 electrons, gain = 2.3 electrons per ADU

NABG (non anti blooming gate), means that the pixel wells may overflow, causing streaks, if exposure time is too high on bright objects. This is actually a plus since NABG is required to perform the scientific astrometric and photometric work that I hope to do someday. It's also significantly more sensitive than the anti blooming version.

This is my primary imaging camera. Brother of the SBIG ST-8e, the i=industrial with the major difference being that this camera does not have a built in guiding chip. The "e" version retails around $6000, I paid less than $2200 used (AstroMart)! It takes gray scale images. I have added on the SBig CFW-8 color filter wheel to enable color and HA imaging. This camera is great, large chip area and VERY sensitive pixels!In fact, the chip in this particular camera is free of column defects and is significantly smoother and more sensitive than the chip in my ST8.
11/18/03

SBIG ST-8

Same as the ST8i but this camera has a guide chip for self guiding! I actually use the main imaging chip on this camera for guiding and my ST8i for imaging. Someday I might purchase an AO7 adaptive optics unit from SBIG that requires the guidechip in order to function.
NIKON Coolpix 995 The family digital camera get's used for eyepiece projection photography from time to time although vignetting and achieving good focus are challenges. I captured part of the 2004 Venus transit of the Sun using this camera.
SAC 7 Air Cooled One Shot Color CCD Camera A fun but super low end camera, was good for starters.

I purchased some SLR lenses and some spacers used on ebay for <$100. All with Pentax M42 mount threads which work with the SAC7. These connect directly to the SAC7 riding piggy back on the LX200 for wide field imaging!

  Meade Pictor 201XT Auto-guider Purchased (you guessed it) used on Astromart. The lack of a display makes this somewhat difficult to use, I may sell it.
  Meade Electronic Eyepiece Came bundled with the ETX70.
 
Miscellaneous
  Meade #3200 Planetary Filter Set, Meade Series 4000 #58 green filter. The filters see a lot of action when I'm imaging the moon, which I do as often as possible.

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