This one is a simple smart phone finderscope attachment for a telescope to assist one in quickly locating astronomical object.
(This is a quick instructable - I will edit it later but you get the gist of what we did)
We used it on Friday, 6th of Sept 2013 to locate Venus full day light - when the sun was well above the horizon.
The telescope is 100 mm Newtonian, home brewed by Pooja, who is looking at Venus. In the background are (from L to R) Smruti, Mayank, Hrishikesh, Jayshree and Arunima.
I must say here that Pooja is slightly better than novice - she started observing just about 8 months ago.
At the time of posting this instructable we have not seen Uranus and Neptune but we are confident that it will be a 'damn' easy to do so.
All that is needed is
1. Smart Phone (of course) with sky map installed.
I am using Samsung Galaxy with Google Sky Map app.
2. A cassette cover
3. A piece of wood - about the length and width of the cassette cover
4. I am using - ball and socket attachment with 20 TPI 1/4 inch bolt for camera.
5. 20 TPI 1/4 inch nut
Step 1: Nut to the Wooden Strip
A hole was drilled in the center of the wooden strip and the 20 TPI 1/4 inch bolt was fixed to it.
Step 2: Wooden Strip to the Cassette Cover
The wooden strip was now fixed to the cassette cover.
Note: You have to file away the cassette holding tabs on the cover.
Step 3: Attachment Goes to the Telescope
Now the phone is inserted into the cassette cover - fixed to it by rubber bands and the attachment goes to the telescope --
I had a ball and socket attachment that I could fix to the telescope tube but one should be able to work out appropriate arrangement.
One possibility, that I had used in past is to use ball and socket part of rear-view mirror is a mirror in automobiles or use camera holding part of the camera tripod.
Step 4: Aligning
Aligning is the next part
First the optical finder scope and the main telescope were aligned.
Looked at a distant object through the telescope and then aligned the finder scope.
(you know what to do)
Next we put the phone on a camera mode and centred same object in the square of the screen.
Finally we pointed the scope towards the sun - Use of extreme caution is needed here -
On a paper we first took the image of the sun using the finder scope.
Then covered the finder scope. Put the smart phone on the Sky Map mode and by get the Sun in the centre of the screen.
This done- use the search mode and simply follow it to Venus- and there it would be a nice bright dot in the field of the optical finder scope.