Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Use this section to discuss "standard" Baader/Coronado/ Lunt SolarView/ Daystar, etc… filters, cameras and scopes. No mods, just questions/ answers and reviews.
Post Reply
Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Fri May 22, 2020 7:35 pm

I ordered the Solarscope 70DS filter package a few weeks ago - and it should be with me in a week or two, so thought I’d start a thread as there’s not much information out there on this intriguing company and their products - though I was helped in my decision by searching the archives of Solarchat, and in particular by Alexandra’s amazing images using both 70mm and 100mm filters.

My solar ha experience so far is limited to two double stacked Lunts (50 and 60), and a Quark which I use with a 4” refractor. I was close to buying a Lunt LS80DS, and then a Solar Spectrum 0.3A, but when I found out that the price of the SF70DS was only a little more here in the U.K. than the Lunt LS80 (DS, FT, B1800), I didn’t hesitate - I’d always thought that a Solarscope set up was beyond my means. The 70mm filters also pair nicely with my TV85.

As many of you will know, the firm was bought a couple of years ago. It’s been a pleasure to deal with the new owner, Helmut Kessler, who has kept me informed about the etalons as they’ve been assembled. Today he emailed saying: “I’m waiting for a day to field test the instrument, to make sure the filters are all adjusted properly, especially the second blocking filter to use with the double stack unit. As all combinations are slightly different (we specify <0.7A but our etalons are more like <0.5-0.6A) this is done specifically for each instrument. So the second blocking filter is adjusted in the field.” Can’t ask for better pre-delivery service!

The hope is that this will be a real step up from the Lunt 60 - a telescope I have very much enjoyed, but feel I need more for visual. Though only 10mm more aperture, I’m hoping for better contrast and more even detail for when Cycle 25 revs up, while still retaining the grab and go ease of a small refractor. Will report back on how things go.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

User avatar
DeepSolar64
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 1342
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:19 am
Location: Edneyville North Carolina U.S.A.
Has thanked: 330 times
Been thanked: 299 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by DeepSolar64 » Sat May 23, 2020 5:56 am

Highbury,
I have been following you on this and wish you the best. Normally I would say that only 10mm increase in aperture would'nt make that big a difference. That's why I wanted to got to at least 80mm in aperture. 20mm over my 60mm. BUT you did choose Solarscope which has a reputation for very high quality and that seems to be shaping out well judging by their customer service. And you haven't even gotten the etalons yet! I hope they just rock! :band May they revolutionize your solar observing experience!

James


Lunt 8x32 SUNoculars
Orion 70mm Solar Telescope
Celestron AstroMaster Alt/Az Mount
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 60 DS
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS
Meade Coronado AZS Alt/Az Mount
Astro-Tech AT72EDII with Altair solar wedge
Celestron NexStar 102GT with Altair solar wedge
Losmandy AZ8 Alt/Az Mount
Traq 60mm with Baader AstroSolar film
Lunt, Coronado, TeleVue, Orion, Celestron and Sears eyepieces

Image Visual Observer

User avatar
Carbon60
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 6995
Joined: Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:33 pm
Location: Lancashire, UK
Has thanked: 227 times
Been thanked: 217 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Carbon60 » Sat May 23, 2020 6:37 am

Looking forward to seeing your images with this setup, Mark. Solarscope products are excellent, as Alexandra so remarkably demonstrates.

Stu.


Lunt LS60THa B1200 PTFT
150mm H-alpha Solar telescope with Lunt35 mod
DMK41, Basler acA1920-155
NEQ6 Pro-mount
Fluxgate Magnetometers (1s and 150s Cadence)
More images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/solarcarbon60/

User avatar
Montana
Librarian
Librarian
Posts: 22333
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 5:25 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK
Has thanked: 707 times
Been thanked: 245 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Montana » Sat May 23, 2020 10:12 am

You have to remember that it is only 10mm greater in aperture than the Lunt 60 you had before, but did the Lunt 60 have a central obstruction? in which case the aperture difference would be more.

When he says the single stack is more like 0.6A I would say that would be true for mine when I first bought it. However, when I sent it back to be matched with a double stack it has never been the same and I have never been quite happy with it. Ken took the tuning wheel so far to one end that in cold temperatures (usually in the spring) I cannot get it on band as I can't get the wheel to go any further. It also decontacted on the one trip across the Irish sea. I hope that one day I will go on holiday to the Isle of Man, leave it with Helmut for the week and get him to test my single stack unit because I am sure there is something not quite right with it still. The double stack unit has been robust and unchangable throughout and never really needs tuning. My single stack certainly isn't what it used to be. I still love it but when you used to have perfection you always want it :)

I hope yours is as good as Pete Lawrence's and the one I tested because it was a super etalon (70mm).

Alexandra



Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Sat May 23, 2020 11:16 am

DeepSolar64 wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 5:56 am
Highbury,
I have been following you on this and wish you the best. Normally I would say that only 10mm increase in aperture would'nt make that big a difference. That's why I wanted to got to at least 80mm in aperture. 20mm over my 60mm. BUT you did choose Solarscope which has a reputation for very high quality and that seems to be shaping out well judging by their customer service. And you haven't even gotten the etalons yet! I hope they just rock! :band May they revolutionize your solar observing experience!

James
Thanks James - there is always a compromise isn’t there? I was hesitant about an LS80DS because of the halo issues. Would love a larger scope but don’t have the space (or back strength) for it. My largest night refractor is 100mm - but it’s only 2.8kg so very easy to carry. I need something grab and go as so much of my solar observing is taking opportunity to grab a quick session. So I hope I’ve made the right decision.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Sat May 23, 2020 11:21 am

Carbon60 wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 6:37 am
Looking forward to seeing your images with this setup, Mark. Solarscope products are excellent, as Alexandra so remarkably demonstrates.

Stu.
Thanks Stu - ‘fraid you might have to wait for those images. Never taken an astronomical photo in my life, though I probably will start in a few months with the new set up.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Sat May 23, 2020 11:38 am

Montana wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 10:12 am
You have to remember that it is only 10mm greater in aperture than the Lunt 60 you had before, but did the Lunt 60 have a central obstruction? in which case the aperture difference would be more.

When he says the single stack is more like 0.6A I would say that would be true for mine when I first bought it. However, when I sent it back to be matched with a double stack it has never been the same and I have never been quite happy with it. Ken took the tuning wheel so far to one end that in cold temperatures (usually in the spring) I cannot get it on band as I can't get the wheel to go any further. It also decontacted on the one trip across the Irish sea. I hope that one day I will go on holiday to the Isle of Man, leave it with Helmut for the week and get him to test my single stack unit because I am sure there is something not quite right with it still. The double stack unit has been robust and unchangable throughout and never really needs tuning. My single stack certainly isn't what it used to be. I still love it but when you used to have perfection you always want it :)

I hope yours is as good as Pete Lawrence's and the one I tested because it was a super etalon (70mm).

Alexandra
Interesting Alexander. Sorry your filters aren’t everything you’d hoped for - they are clearly at the limit of what’s possible with an unobstructed unit.
It’s the unique properties of every etalon, every stacked system, and everyone’s individual vision that make this such a frustrating but also addictive pastime! Obviously the aperture jump of only 10mm for me is an issue, I’m just hoping the quality of the Solarscope filters will make it worthwhile. The Lunt 60 has a 60mm unobstructed double stack filter so is no slouch. Another issue is seeing - my Quark paired with 100mm refractor is normally too much for my seeing here in London, so in that respect a 70mm set up could prove more usable. We shall see...


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Sat May 23, 2020 11:39 am

That should have been Alexandra - apols.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

User avatar
DeepSolar64
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 1342
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:19 am
Location: Edneyville North Carolina U.S.A.
Has thanked: 330 times
Been thanked: 299 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by DeepSolar64 » Sat May 23, 2020 4:06 pm

Highbury Mark wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 11:16 am
DeepSolar64 wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 5:56 am
Highbury,
I have been following you on this and wish you the best. Normally I would say that only 10mm increase in aperture would'nt make that big a difference. That's why I wanted to got to at least 80mm in aperture. 20mm over my 60mm. BUT you did choose Solarscope which has a reputation for very high quality and that seems to be shaping out well judging by their customer service. And you haven't even gotten the etalons yet! I hope they just rock! :band May they revolutionize your solar observing experience!

James
Thanks James - there is always a compromise isn’t there? I was hesitant about an LS80DS because of the halo issues. Would love a larger scope but don’t have the space (or back strength) for it. My largest night refractor is 100mm - but it’s only 2.8kg so very easy to carry. I need something grab and go as so much of my solar observing is taking opportunity to grab a quick session. So I hope I’ve made the right decision.

Usually there is a compromise.

I hope you are as satisfied with your new etalons as I am my Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS. It is vastly superior to my Coronado 60 in resolution and detail. It performs superbly on proms and fine limb detail and given some disc activity should do well there too. I haven't had a chance to do a lot of disc observing due to lack of anything there and now when there is an AR it's cloudy or I have lack of time. Let us all know how they do when you get them. Do you plan to use them more visually or more for imaging?

Lunt scopes have no central obstruction.

James


Lunt 8x32 SUNoculars
Orion 70mm Solar Telescope
Celestron AstroMaster Alt/Az Mount
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 60 DS
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS
Meade Coronado AZS Alt/Az Mount
Astro-Tech AT72EDII with Altair solar wedge
Celestron NexStar 102GT with Altair solar wedge
Losmandy AZ8 Alt/Az Mount
Traq 60mm with Baader AstroSolar film
Lunt, Coronado, TeleVue, Orion, Celestron and Sears eyepieces

Image Visual Observer

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Sat May 23, 2020 5:39 pm

Usually there is a compromise.

I hope you are as satisfied with your new etalons as I am my Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS. It is vastly superior to my Coronado 60 in resolution and detail. It performs superbly on proms and fine limb detail and given some disc activity should do well there too. I haven't had a chance to do a lot of disc observing due to lack of anything there and now when there is an AR it's cloudy or I have lack of time. Let us all know how they do when you get them. Do you plan to use them more visually or more for imaging?

No imaging - at least not yet. Want to get to know them visually first. But you’re right, it’s almost impossible to assess the visual performance of a double stack system - particularly a small one like mine, at the moment without greater activity. You really seem to have hit the jackpot with your new 90 though. Sounds like you’ve got a lifetime scope there.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

User avatar
DeepSolar64
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 1342
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:19 am
Location: Edneyville North Carolina U.S.A.
Has thanked: 330 times
Been thanked: 299 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by DeepSolar64 » Sun May 24, 2020 5:23 am

I like the TV85 too. Nice scope. I have a close friend that had one a while back. It does very well and is grab and go portable. He also has a Takahashi FS 102 which gives even better views but is a much beefier instrument.


Lunt 8x32 SUNoculars
Orion 70mm Solar Telescope
Celestron AstroMaster Alt/Az Mount
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 60 DS
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS
Meade Coronado AZS Alt/Az Mount
Astro-Tech AT72EDII with Altair solar wedge
Celestron NexStar 102GT with Altair solar wedge
Losmandy AZ8 Alt/Az Mount
Traq 60mm with Baader AstroSolar film
Lunt, Coronado, TeleVue, Orion, Celestron and Sears eyepieces

Image Visual Observer

User avatar
Bob Yoesle
Almost There...
Almost There...
Posts: 565
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:24 pm
Been thanked: 7 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Bob Yoesle » Wed May 27, 2020 12:23 am

Hi H Mark,

Thought you might be interested in this thread if you haven't seen it already:

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/6844 ... pe-sf70ds/


Diagonally parked in a parallel universe.

Curiosity is the father of knowledge; uncertainty is the mother of wisdom.

Goldendale Observatory

Dark-Sky Defenders

User avatar
DeepSolar64
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 1342
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:19 am
Location: Edneyville North Carolina U.S.A.
Has thanked: 330 times
Been thanked: 299 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by DeepSolar64 » Wed May 27, 2020 5:22 pm

Excellent thread, Bob!!


Lunt 8x32 SUNoculars
Orion 70mm Solar Telescope
Celestron AstroMaster Alt/Az Mount
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 60 DS
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS
Meade Coronado AZS Alt/Az Mount
Astro-Tech AT72EDII with Altair solar wedge
Celestron NexStar 102GT with Altair solar wedge
Losmandy AZ8 Alt/Az Mount
Traq 60mm with Baader AstroSolar film
Lunt, Coronado, TeleVue, Orion, Celestron and Sears eyepieces

Image Visual Observer

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Wed May 27, 2020 7:58 pm

Thanks Bob!
Have to say that before I pressed the button on the filters, I squeezed Solarchat (and the rest of the internet) dry of all Solarscope content. And it didn’t take long. A few discussions and reports on CN. Very little on Stargazers’ Lounge in the UK. So that thread you posted had been very well absorbed.....


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Solar B
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 177
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2015 9:29 am
Location: Dunfermline , Scotland
Has thanked: 20 times
Been thanked: 10 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Solar B » Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:16 am

💚🐸🐊🐢🐍🐉🌲🌳🌴🌵🌿🍀🍃🌵🍏🍈⛳🔋📗💹🌄

It's Tuesday

Brian


" Gentlemen only ever use Refractors "

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:27 pm

They’re here!
Attachments
043369E6-D73C-4240-B002-DA0B809EF67C.jpeg
043369E6-D73C-4240-B002-DA0B809EF67C.jpeg (3.55 MiB) Viewed 57 times
39F8E714-5754-4D8A-8DA0-60B643B8626E.jpeg
39F8E714-5754-4D8A-8DA0-60B643B8626E.jpeg (4.05 MiB) Viewed 57 times
0CE9C808-BDD3-46CC-9A57-58CF8AFB667A.jpeg
0CE9C808-BDD3-46CC-9A57-58CF8AFB667A.jpeg (2.34 MiB) Viewed 57 times


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Tue Jun 02, 2020 10:32 pm

New SF70DS arrived . Only had 10 minutes observing time today - with high cloud making conditions less than perfect - but already clear these filters are a step up from my LuntLS60 DS. Need a lot more time to fully assess - so will post reactions over the next few days, as long as U.K. weather plays ball


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

User avatar
DeepSolar64
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Way More Fun to Share It!!
Posts: 1342
Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:19 am
Location: Edneyville North Carolina U.S.A.
Has thanked: 330 times
Been thanked: 299 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by DeepSolar64 » Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:45 am

Awesome! They look good on that TV85! Keep us posted on how they do.


Lunt 8x32 SUNoculars
Orion 70mm Solar Telescope
Celestron AstroMaster Alt/Az Mount
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 60 DS
Meade Coronado SolarMax II 90 DS
Meade Coronado AZS Alt/Az Mount
Astro-Tech AT72EDII with Altair solar wedge
Celestron NexStar 102GT with Altair solar wedge
Losmandy AZ8 Alt/Az Mount
Traq 60mm with Baader AstroSolar film
Lunt, Coronado, TeleVue, Orion, Celestron and Sears eyepieces

Image Visual Observer

User avatar
marktownley
Librarian
Librarian
Posts: 28151
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:27 pm
Location: Brierley Hills, UK
Has thanked: 903 times
Been thanked: 367 times
Contact:

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by marktownley » Wed Jun 03, 2020 6:41 am

Great news! No wonder the weather has turned from summer to autumn here :D


Image
http://brierleyhillsolar.blogspot.co.uk/
Solar images, a collection of all the most up to date live solar data on the web, imaging & processing tutorials - please take a look!

User avatar
Montana
Librarian
Librarian
Posts: 22333
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 5:25 pm
Location: Cheshire, UK
Has thanked: 707 times
Been thanked: 245 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Montana » Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:11 am

I was going to say, you just got them in the nick of time on the very last day of sunshine. I'm sorry to say that we will no longer see the Sun again this year ;) :lol:

Alexandra



Highbury Mark
Ohhhhhh My!
Ohhhhhh My!
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:53 pm
Has thanked: 17 times
Been thanked: 16 times

Re: Solarscope SF70DS incoming

Post by Highbury Mark » Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:16 pm

Montana wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:11 am
I was going to say, you just got them in the nick of time on the very last day of sunshine. I'm sorry to say that we will no longer see the Sun again this year ;) :lol:

Alexandra
Incredible isn’t it! Five weeks of beautiful sunshine. Now my weather app shows nothing but cloud.
Couldn’t reach focus with my binoviewer yesterday so at least this gives me time to work out a solution - a stronger Barlow is called for.


TV85 + Solarscope SF70DS (on the way)
Lunt LS60DS
Quark Chromosphere
Baader wedge

Post Reply