Series 60 Ring (#7065) & Mercury Transit

•May 2, 2016 • Leave a Comment

New Series 60 mounting ring (# 7065) is now in stock. The mechanical design is identical to 7085 – Series 80 ring except the size.

I have just changed my setup with new rings. There are many threaded holes. So it’s quite easy to attach small accessories such as a red-dot finder shown in a picture. Also the ring allows to set a ball head at the top or even side via 1/4″-20 male to male adapter. 0502a

Mercury transit is just a week away. I doubled checked my rig’s setting and performance. Eventually I picked 89ED + 1.4x teleconverter (# 7214). It’s 840 mm focal length. Still a plenty of extra room in micro 4/3rds sensor. But I think it’s realistic focal length and speed for me.

0502bHinode SG’s calibration and auto guiding was as usual. Camera exposure and shutter speed look proper. The mount looks good. So I think I’m ready. Only problem is the weather……  I might be forced to change the location. Let me keep watching the forecast.

New US Dealer & Sigma Art Lenses

•April 29, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Seattle-based Cloud Break Optics now becomes one of Hutech partners in US and starts carrying several Hutech-related products in stock.

cboAn Owner of the company – Matt Dahl is an experienced and serious astrophothgrapher. So I’m confident he will fully support you at all of aspects you will face. Especially for California customers, you will have a great astro shop outside the state but still close enough to avoid the extra cost. Please enjoy shopping with them.

These days I notice more people are selecting Sigma Art lenses. Yes, they are excellent quality and performance. I own 50 mm and 20 mm. I used to test 35 mm provided from Sigma. It was great result too. But personally I already owned 50 mm and thought 35 mm was a bit too close to 50 mm. When 20 mm was released, I jumped to get 20 mm. I didn’t need to time to spend considering. As expected, 20 mm is surprisingly very well too. Here is 3 brothers of F1.4 Art series. From top, 50 mm, 35 mm and 20 mm.


If someone are looking highest quality wide-angle lens, this is it.

You can see some my previous posts on Sigma.

Finally here is the article on 50 mm written by Terry Dickinson. I have exactly same feeling as his.

Sigma is the excellent company who is still designing and producing in Japan. I’m proud of their spirit. Go Sigma. I’m eagerly waiting for a new Foveon based mirrorless camera, which is expected to come up this summer. Definitely I should get the one. Probably it might still not suitable for deepsky targets. But I expect how it works for lunar and solar imaging.


BORG Black Velvet Sheet

•April 27, 2016 • Leave a Comment

One of BORG scope advantages is the easy access to inside tube assembly because of modular design. So it’s quite easy to add a black velvet sheet inside tube.BORG sheet is not flimsy paper. It’s resin-made industrial quality and black velvet well prevents the inside of the tube from reflections. See my comparison test.

7051 is added in front of a 205 mm long tube. As you can see, obviously improved. I’m sure this makes the difference of image contrast.

If your system includes 25 mm, 50 mm or 100 mm long tube, remove the objective lens section and look into the scope from the rear side to see any reflections inside. Keep in mind, a threaded connection portion is a part of reflection too. So I put 10 mm wide sheet on a threaded section too.

Following was my previous test for FTF-M57, just for your reference.

For the users who own recent reducers such as 7872 and 7880, this is not required since the reducer’s lens portion goes inside of FTF’s drawtube.

Please enjoy BORG advantage to achieve maximum performance and maintain good shape inside long time.

BORG velvet sheet is available at part # 5020. 

This is a highly recommended item.


BORG 55FL F3.6 with Rotator

•April 25, 2016 • 3 Comments

The customer who recently bought 55FL F3.6 feather touch version wanted to orient a cooled camera without interfering a motor and tension screw with a plate. So he brought his scope to my office this morning and we tested around several possibilities. Here is his final conclusion.

This setup allows him to rotate a camera up to about 270 degree without a motor’s interference. A rotator is functional to raise the scope up. And a plate is short enough for large CCD camera too.

I was glad to figure out the good solution for him too. Shorter the telescopes, harder the setup.



New Series 60 Mounting Ring (#7065)

•April 21, 2016 • Leave a Comment

As a prototype was shown here several times, a new Series 60 ring (# 7065) will be commercially available early of next month. This is basically a smaller version of Series 80 one.

As you are aware, this ring allows to more easily set something at the top or sides.And machined-made precision finish inside achieves the smooth the scope orientation and sliding back & forth. The resin-made velvet sheet inside prevents the scope from being spotted.

BORG Dovetail Plate

•April 20, 2016 • Leave a Comment

I have completed to switch all of my previous plates and saddle to Arca Swiss style. I love new interface because of more compact and lighter. I totally feel it’s the best fit with BORG. So I wanted to evaluate such feeling numerically. plateLeft is my previous Vixen-compatible plate and Saddle. Right is Arca Swiss clamp head and BORG dovetail plate (#3200)

Each weight is;

BORG 3200 : 115g & 235g with clamp

Losmandy plate : 265g & 665g(!!) with saddle

So “before” was almost 3 times heavier. This is big difference. Obviously D-series plate is much heavier.

BORG dovetail plate is nicely designed and machined to reduce its weight while maintaining the stiffness. Probably machining cost must be more than normal plate like above Losmandy one because of the complexity of machining.

Extra benefit after changing to Arca Swiss mounting interface is to make switching between telescopes and camera lens setup more convenient.

I highly recommend BORG users Arca Swiss setup. Various plates and clamps are available in the market too.



BORG 107FL with 1.4x Teleconverter (840mm)

•April 15, 2016 • 1 Comment

This is Mr.BORG – Nakagawa san’s 107FL configuration. It’s a little longer than basic prime focus setup due to 1.4x teleconverter. But when each section is fully retracted, all along with a camera can be put into this carrying bag (#5414).   5414’s length inside is 670mm. But keep in mind this is 840mm focal length configuration. Prime focus is shorter and it will be further shorter with the reducer currently designed.

With M75 focuser, M75 iris and carbon tube and drawtube

I was told “Canon Optron” name was included for advertising purpose during field test based on request from Canon.

Drops of water look very realistic.


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