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Charles Dunlop
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  • Laguna Beach, CA
  • United States
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Charles Dunlop's Discussions

CCD autopilot vs ACP

Started this discussion. Last reply by Marc Basti Nov 11, 2014. 6 Replies

Kind of liking CCD autopilot. Have both systems, but I'm preferring CCD autopilot. Just easier to understand. Now that my guider is picking up stars easily CCDAP seems to be doing the job. Of course…Continue

Howie Glatter Laser Collimator

Started this discussion. Last reply by Charles Dunlop Jun 1, 2013. 2 Replies

Best telescope tool I ever bought. Little pricey, but got a discount. My scope was way out of collimation as I was overscrewing around stars at night trying to get it perfect. Thing was way out of…Continue



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Profile Information

To avoid Spam and Bots, to join we simply ask you to describe your primary telescope setup.
I started astrogab to have fun, chat with others and learn more. My learning curve has been off the charts since starting this site.

Telescope Setup

Technical innovations PD10 automated dome
Paramount Pier


Paramount ME

12.5" AG optical corrected Dall-Kirkham
FLI Atlas focuser

optec pyxis 3 rotator

Starlight xpress adaptive optics

Maxim and CCDsoft
SkyX pro
ACP observatory control

Photographic stuff
Flatman XL

QSI 683 wsg-c-8

SBIG Planetcam

Baader Filters: LP for luminance, Red, Green, Blue, Halpha, OIII, Hbeta, SII

Charles Dunlop's Blog

Switching to ACP

Posted on September 25, 2012 at 4:20am 4 Comments

CCDap is so unstable. Actually going to try the free program Steve Coates turned us onto tomorrow, but man CCDap is just unstable. When it works it's awesome when it doesn't it blows a night, and it seems to be 50/50. ACP apparently much more stable.

personal hubble

Posted on August 5, 2012 at 6:23pm 4 Comments

Wonder how much it would cost to have your own like 20 inch orbiting telescope.

Mars one

Posted on June 26, 2012 at 7:58am 3 Comments

OK, these guys are actually doing this. Would you go?

I made it into scientific American!!!

Posted on May 16, 2012 at 10:44am 2 Comments

Not too big a deal, but I'm pretty stoked. Irony is, I share a step mother with David Goldstein but I've only met him once or twice. funny.

Comment Wall (32 comments)

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At 4:58am on April 21, 2015, carlo colombo italiano milanese said…

mi sono sempre dimenticato di farti i miei ringraziamenti per la tua amicizia e accoglienza presso l'astrogab, grazie c.colombo astrofilo milanese

At 4:58pm on December 13, 2013, Marc Basti said…

Congrats to you and Mom. Life will never be the same, it'll be better-enjoy!

At 7:42pm on December 12, 2013, Trevor Woodrow said…

What, no pics of your new baby!?!

At 2:41pm on May 4, 2013, Trevor Woodrow said…

I know you have been shooting, where are your posts!?! And for Christ's sake, shoot some darks!

At 6:24am on April 24, 2013, Mark Roberts said…

Hi Charles
If you are looking for a Ha Solar Scope there are a few nice options you may wish to consider. Solarscope and Daystar have Premium Ha filter systems that will mount to your existing refractor to turn them into very high quality solar instrument. One of my friends has a Solarscope filter system that just blows away the Coronado or Lunt scopes. I have heard nothing but good about Daystar but have no experience with them.
Something to consider since you tend to like the best

Clear Skies

At 9:10am on July 8, 2012, Frank Bastian said…

Interesting you said that because I've been of the same mind. I considered starting small and stretching to better, but finally after all I've read I decided to go for a higher end from the get go - an aplanatic 11" with CGEM DX mount. My only hesitation was a) it may be more than I can handle (I'm quite fit now at 59, but in 15 or 20 years a 110 lb mount may prove daunting to haul around) and b) building that old 6" from scratch was an adventure. Buying a 'ready to go' scope may leave less opportunity for creativity and discovery. But I suspect I will have ample opportunity to tweak and upgrade and I get my feet wet in this. Time will tell.

At 7:12am on July 8, 2012, Frank Bastian said…

Well... maybe I can grow into something that ambitious! What do you think of the Celestron CGEM DX mount?

At 9:56pm on July 7, 2012, Frank Bastian said…

well, forgot to mention that I have a 6" ~ F6 newtonian I built years ago and also picked up a used 3" refractor that have both languished for lack of a decent mount. a priority is to get a good solid mount. my skies are pretty good when clear (mountains of Pennsylvania)

At 9:30pm on July 7, 2012, Frank Bastian said…

that's part of my dilemma - both. So I wanted something I can enjoy viewing with and cultivate a serious AP hobby too. I was torn between a large aperture SCT and large newtonian. I'd read that for viewing a short F newtonian was not ideal, but a 10" F5 newtonian would have a 48" tube - kind of cumbersome on for viewing with an equatorial mount.

I think where I've settled is the reality that there is no one perfect scope for both viewing and AP - I'll eventually want an SCT and a newtonian; maybe even a big dobsonian. I'm strongly motivated to go with a SC to start and build from there.

At 2:36pm on June 20, 2012, Steve Coates said…

Totally agree with Mark. I wish I started out with this gear and skipped the SCT. There are a lot of folks who are using an Orion 80mm ED and are getting excellent results.



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