Collimation App?

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GCoyote
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Collimation App?

#1

Post by GCoyote » Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:26 pm

I see all sorts of mounts to adapt a cell phone camera for astrophotography. Is there an app that also lets you use it for collimation? Seems like being able to sit comfortably and watch the screen while turning the adjustment screws would make the process pretty easy. Already checked the Android store with no luck.
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#2

Post by UlteriorModem » Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:08 pm

Why not just defocus the star take a series of snaps and adjust the doughnut. Sounds easy but the star moves as you adjust the mirror tilt :D

But it can be done.
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#3

Post by yobbo89 » Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:48 am

A laser collimator with the return crosshair target does pretty well ,What telescope are you using ?

I never have any much luck with software, ccd inspector and sharp cap are suppose to have collimation tools
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#4

Post by GCoyote » Sat Feb 15, 2020 12:17 pm

yobbo89 wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:48 am
A laser collimator with the return crosshair target does pretty well ,What telescope are you using ?

I never have any much luck with software, ccd inspector and sharp cap are suppose to have collimation tools
Well my though was that you could have a right angle eyepiece oriented toward the rear of the scope, add the phone cradle, and that would give you a nice big picture to look at while you fiddle with those :flame: little screws.

I'm looking at a couple of collimation tools now but have not made the purchase. So the Newt's are getting dusty while the 'fracs are doing all the work.

I looked up this laser tool and it does look interesting. Might reduce my frustration level a tad.
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#5

Post by MrShorty » Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:34 pm

FWIW, if you are looking to buy a piece of hardware, I've had a laser collimator for about a year -- never felt like I got consistent, good collimation. Bought a Cheshire about a month ago and feel like I get better, more consistent collimation with it. I would probably recommend the cheshire collimator over the laser collimator, since they tend to be similarly priced.

As far as turning it into an app, you would just need to figure out how to get your camera to look down through that tiny hole in the Cheshire in a way that you can see the image from the mirror end of the telescope.
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#6

Post by Larry 1969 » Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:36 pm

GCoyote wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 12:17 pm

Well my though was that you could have a right angle eyepiece oriented toward the rear of the scope, add the phone cradle, and that would give you a nice big picture to look at while you fiddle with those :flame: little screws.

I'm looking at a couple of collimation tools now but have not made the purchase. So the Newt's are getting dusty while the 'fracs are doing all the work.

I looked up this laser tool and it does look interesting. Might reduce my frustration level a tad.
I paid a bit extra for the Hotech laser collimator with crosshair pattern. It has been my goto and I use it every time I set up.

You may also want to get a set of Bob's knobs. These replace your nasty little allen screws that adjust your secondary mirror. No risk of dropping a tool right onto your primary mirror.

Link for collimator
http://www.hotechusa.com/category-s/22.htm

Link to Bob's knobs
http://bobsknobs.com/Newt/Newt.html

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#7

Post by GCoyote » Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:43 pm

Nice.
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#8

Post by Sky Tinker » Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:01 am

GCoyote wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 12:17 pm
I'm looking at a couple of collimation tools now but have not made the purchase. So the Newt's are getting dusty while the 'fracs are doing all the work.

I looked up this laser tool and it does look interesting. Might reduce my frustration level a tad.

You don't want that Orion tool. You can get the same, or better even, without the brand-label, and for less...

https://www.ebay.com/itm/SVBONY-1-25-Ne ... 8632!US!-1

I have one of those. It sports a triplet-lens, and for a tighter laser-spot. With the Orion or the Svbony, you will need to check its collimation and correct it before using it to collimate the telescope. Collimating one of those tools will require a jig.

However, I don't use my own for my Newtonians. I use a Cheshire and a collimation-cap instead...

https://agenaastro.com/celestron-1-25-c ... 94182.html
https://agenaastro.com/rigel-systems-al ... piece.html

The passive tools are tried-and-true.
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#9

Post by Sky Tinker » Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:07 am

Bob's Knobs are bit fancy, and to where you'd want a finished appearance; like for the secondary-hub of a Schmidt-Cassegrain.

I went to my local hardware and got these socket-head bolts...
secondary hub screws5.jpg
"Look, son! Up there!" His son shouted back, "I see it! What is it?" The father regaled, "The galaxy! Andromeda! Our origin, our destiny!" And so the boy was hooked, and for the rest of his natural life.

Alan

Apochromat: Takahashi FS-102 f/8 - Achromats: Meade "Polaris" 90mm f/10(flocked & blackened), Antares(GSO) 805 80mm f/6(flocked & blackened), Celestron(Synta) "AstroMaster" 70mm f/13(flocked & blackened), Sears(Towa) #4-6340 50mm f/12(flocked & blackened) - Newtonians: Orion(Synta) 6" f/5(flocked & blackened), Meade "Polaris" 114mm f/8, Zhumell(GSO) Z100 100mm f/4 - Catadioptrics: Explore Scientific(JOC) 127mm f/15 Maksutov-Cassegrain, Celestron "PowerSeeker" 127mm f/8 "Bird Jones" reflector(modified, flocked, blackened...& collimated!)...and mounts, eyepieces, barlows and diagonals.
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#10

Post by UlteriorModem » Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:37 am

Sky Tinker wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:07 am
Bob's Knobs are bit fancy, and to where you'd want a finished appearance; like for the secondary-hub of a Schmidt-Cassegrain.

I went to my local hardware and got these socket-head bolts...

secondary hub screws5.jpg
Did the same thing with my Ritchey Chretien. A plus for the Bob's though is that a tool is not required.
Tom

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#11

Post by Sky Tinker » Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:56 am

UlteriorModem wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:37 am
Sky Tinker wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 12:07 am
Bob's Knobs are bit fancy, and to where you'd want a finished appearance; like for the secondary-hub of a Schmidt-Cassegrain.

I went to my local hardware and got these socket-head bolts...

secondary hub screws5.jpg
Did the same thing with my Ritchey Chretien. A plus for the Bob's though is that a tool is not required.

The socket-heads do allow for adjustment with just the fingers, although torquing them down in the end with a hex-key would be required. Still, I've found them to be most effective. Then, anything's better than the original head-less set-screws.
"Look, son! Up there!" His son shouted back, "I see it! What is it?" The father regaled, "The galaxy! Andromeda! Our origin, our destiny!" And so the boy was hooked, and for the rest of his natural life.

Alan

Apochromat: Takahashi FS-102 f/8 - Achromats: Meade "Polaris" 90mm f/10(flocked & blackened), Antares(GSO) 805 80mm f/6(flocked & blackened), Celestron(Synta) "AstroMaster" 70mm f/13(flocked & blackened), Sears(Towa) #4-6340 50mm f/12(flocked & blackened) - Newtonians: Orion(Synta) 6" f/5(flocked & blackened), Meade "Polaris" 114mm f/8, Zhumell(GSO) Z100 100mm f/4 - Catadioptrics: Explore Scientific(JOC) 127mm f/15 Maksutov-Cassegrain, Celestron "PowerSeeker" 127mm f/8 "Bird Jones" reflector(modified, flocked, blackened...& collimated!)...and mounts, eyepieces, barlows and diagonals.
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#12

Post by GCoyote » Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:40 pm

Ended up getting the next generation laser collimation tool for $24. I'll have to check my box of metric parts to see if I already have replacement screws that size. Otherwise I'll be using my Lowe's discount once again. :)

I also joined a nearby amateur astronomy club. They are having a telescope clinic next month so if I have too much trouble I can drag my gear to the meeting and get some hands on experience.
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#13

Post by ARock » Wed Feb 19, 2020 3:23 pm

Mire de Collimation used to be one of those collimation assist tools for windows. There are a couple of tools at the bottom of this page

http://sweiller.free.fr/collimation.html
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