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RE: Dome For Portable Use.

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Posted by Hans G. Gnodtke on November 1, 2000 17:58:13 UTC

John, I live in Egypt and whenever I can, I drive a 100 or so miles into the desert to enjoy the most unpolluted skies I ever came across. But the price is dust and wind. Egyptian deserts are basically a plateau, and therefore almost always prone to sudden gusty winds. I tried first Kendricks observer tent, which was good for small instruments to protect against both, winds and sandstorms. Its probably no solution against stray light either, but thta no concern in the desert. Ever since I got myself a new 10 incher meade SCT on the super wedge, Parts of the mounted scope would always be exposed to gusty winds. The result was poor photos, for very obvious reasons. I then upgraded to Kendricks observer dome, and that really was the solution, unfortunately only for the wind problem, there is no protection against dust or even sandstorms.The reason being the lack of a floor sewn to the tent so sand and dust does creep in from everywhere.
Mind you, conditions in the saharan environment are quite extreme. I also observed in my native Europe and the American South West. Both solutions from Kendrick should work well over there. therefor the gist of what I am trying to tell you is:
The observer tent gives adequate protection against Wind and dust for instruments up to 8 inches (200 mm) SCTs provided you keep the instrument low (dont extend tripod legs) and make sure, that the tent is set up in a way, that you can zip the roof to close the general wind direction.
For larger Instruments Kendricks dome provides excellent if not perfect protection against winds, unfortunately none against dust or even Rain, rain doesnt matter in Egypt but certainly would elsewhere.
Kendricks two portable solutions were tested by Astronomy mag three months ago. The reports confirm my own impressions except that the author mixed up the inadequate bag for the tent with the well designed bag for the dome. I hope this helps.

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