Time has already come to improve my Sky-Watcher Explorer 130PDS 🙂
After using the 130PDS for 3 weeks it turned out that there are some things that could be better. So far I have equipped my 130PDS with the following improvements:
2″ Adapter with compression ring
I replaced the original Sky-Watcher 2″ adapter with a TS-Optics 2″ adapter with compression ring to prevent dents on the Baader MPCC Mark III corrector and for an overall better grip of my DSLR/corrector combo.
Most likely I’ll also buy a 2″ screw adapter for the MPCC. With it tilting should be eliminated and also no risk anymore for damage if (in worst case) my DSLR slips out of the focuser, like it did a few days ago almost happened…
T-2 Fine Adjustment Rings
Baader 0.3mm, 0.5mm and 1mm aluminum rings for fine space adjustments between DSLR sensor and Baader MPCC Mark III corrector. With these 3 rings I’ve a range of 0.3mm to 1.8mm. Hopefully it will solve the corner coma issues I’m currently struggling with…
There are already clearly visible dents on the corrector from the original 2″ Sky-Watcher adapter with 2 screws after only 2 usages 🙁
I just measured and it seems the MPCC distance was to small without any ring (54mm). I even didn’t knew that there is a mark on the DSLR which shows the sensor position.
I start with the red ring (0.5mm) and see what difference it makes. Second the red and black ring (0.8mm) and finally the yellow ring (1mm). A comparison of the images will show which combination is the best.
Dust / stray light protection
Laser Collimator / 2″ to 1.25″ Twist-Lock Adapter
It works better than with my old 2″ to 1.25″ adapter and standard laser collimator, but still far away from a reliable reproduction…
A TS-Optics dew shield for the colder nights…
So far I don’t use it, but as soon as I experience dew for the first time I’ll know in which situations I need it. Newtons generally should be very insensitive to dew, since the tube itself is already a big dew shield.
Or I’ll use it as strew light protection if needed 🙂
Magnets for Fine Balance Adjustment
I found those magnets in our local discounter. The magnetic side is overlayed by a soft fabric. Perfect to avoid scratches on the 130PDS tube. They are also very easy to slide on the tube for fine balance adjustments.
I purachased 12 small magnets total. One of them weights around 17 grams. Currently I use 2 magnet “towers”, one tower contains 4 magnets (68 grams), the other 3 magnets (51 grams).
So now I have an ultra flexible 120 grams weight. It works like a charm.
I really like the Lacerta Bahtinov masks (*) since they have thinner and more slots than other brands. It’s really easy to find focus with this one.
I was concerned about the size. It seems to have a to small diameter, but it works perfect. The following images were taken with this new mask:
Primary Mirror Mask Ring
Read more here.