Today, the 34mm Siebert Optics eyepieces arrived in the mail. These are handmade by Harry Siebert in North Carolina. They are incredibly light, have a small diameter, and will display 3 degrees of sky in the Drifter. They are also produced and calibrated as a pair to ensure collimation. Beautiful!
Tonight there was about one hour of clear sky–and it’s the hour I was sitting down eating dinner. Afterwards, I took them out to the front lawn for a worst-case-scenario test: clouds, monoviewing (yawn!), f/4.5″ optics (providing both coma and diffraction spikes in my astigmatic eyes at 7.5mm exit pupil), two streetlights, and a second-quarter moon. Still, I managed to see the Ring Nebula pop out of the sky behind it–with Sheliak and Sulafat just barely trading places at the edge of the field. (65 degrees AFOV seems very accurate.) The moon was razor-sharp, perfectly round, and completely colorless. I’d hoped for a decent view of the Double Cluster, but it was obscured for the most part. Still, an impressive number of stars could be resolved at this relatively low magnification.
Can’t wait for a proper test!