Like New AgainI succeeded in removing the focuser as well and started the tedious job of scraping out the droppings. Then I cleaned the inside of the tube with a moist rag. Next to a tiny bit of shine where the droppings had been there was no trace left of the dead lizard. I carefully cleaned the lens and put everything back together. Case, diagonal and Rigel Quickfinder were subjected to rigorous cleaning as well. By the time I was done, everything looked like new. Here are the photos after the Stellarvue was all cleaned up. Click on thumbnails to enlarge.
The True TestSoon after, I went out into the Santa Monica mountains to do some astrophotography and test the new scope. It performed great: sharp and contrasty images, tiny pinpoint stars against a velvet black background. With a modest CG-4 mount I imaged the North America and Pelican Nebulae, using just over 20 one-minute subs at ISO 1250, unguided. Very happy with the result – in spite of the relatively short integration time both nebulae show good color and detail. Click image to enlarge Image Info: The North America Nebula (NGC 7000) and the nearby Pelican Nebula (IC 5070) are in fact parts of the same interstellar cloud of ionized hydrogen. Between the Earth and the nebula complex lies a band of interstellar dust that absorbs the light and determines the shape as we see it.
Distance: 2,000 light years Constellation: Cygnus Telescope: Stellarvue SVR70ED Camera: Nikon D7000, astro modified