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My Orion Starshoot Autoguider has arrived!

I can't wait for some clear skies. Thanks to UK Astronomy Buy & Sell, I've managed to find a second hand Orion Starshooter autoguider at a very good price (thanks Peter). The next clear night I'll try it out while testing the last couple of cameras I have modified.

So far, I have been guiding with a Philips 880 SPC flashed camera in my Stellarvue F50 -a finder that takes eyepieces. Finding and centering a bright enough guide star has been a struggle and I can't wait to try a proper autoguider which should give me plenty of stars to choose from. That will save me a lot of time and frustration.
So far, I've been using a 2X barlow to extend the focal length of my finder to 400mm. This has obviously significantly reduced the field of view and and made very difficult to centre the guiding star. I've been advised to use the OSA without the barlow as the 200mm FL of my finder should apparently be enough for autoguiding.

One of the things that caught me by surprise is the weight of the OSA. The webcam is much lighter and has given me nice planetary images but I must simplify the guiding process, particularly in this weather with so little astroimaging time!












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