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(AZCentral)   Remember folks, that 14" telescope you use to watch the lunar eclipse, Venus transit, or just to stargaze in general, during daytime, it acts like a giant magnifying glass and can set your damn house on fire   (azcentral.com) divider line 75
    More: PSA, Venus, Cave Creek, structure fire, bright spot, Rural/Metro, long rifle  
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7142 clicks; posted to Main » on 06 Jun 2012 at 11:17 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-06-06 07:41:41 PM
As firefighters looked for the cause, they began to focus on the telescope

I see what they did there.
 
2012-06-06 07:51:21 PM
Stay classy, Scottsdale.
 
2012-06-06 07:56:04 PM
I'd like to think that somewhere in the cosmos, Carl Sagan is giggling.
 
2012-06-06 08:27:19 PM
His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.
 
2012-06-06 08:54:26 PM
Firefighters suspect a 14-inch telescope left outside in sunlight sparked a fire that damaged a Carefree home this week.

Yeah - I'm guessing not so much anymore.
 
2012-06-06 09:05:02 PM
What a perfect insurance scam
 
2012-06-06 09:16:06 PM

Shadow Blasko: What a perfect insurance scam


This. I'm guessing someone was upside-down and needed to get out pretty darn quick.
 
2012-06-06 09:45:30 PM

rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.


Farking THIS

/a 14" reflector isn't cheap, and you sure as hell take better care of it than that
 
2012-06-06 11:06:46 PM
Put a lid on it. Your gf will thank you.
www.farpointastro.com
 
2012-06-06 11:22:17 PM
Is this like that episode of 1000 Ways To Die where that guy makes a giant death ray to cook a can of beans and it exploded, leaving him unconscious with his head in front of the light beam which burned into his brain?
 
2012-06-06 11:27:35 PM
Just keep it away from the popsicle stick skyscraper please.
 
2012-06-06 11:28:07 PM
Obviously, we need more legislation on telescopes, 'cause you just can't fix stupid.
 
2012-06-06 11:30:40 PM

rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.


'more dollars than sense'
 
2012-06-06 11:30:55 PM
Mentioned this very possibility at our transit event yesterday and had people joking about it. Who's laughing now, Mr. Egghead Astronomer???
 
2012-06-06 11:31:16 PM
TFA: "We believe it could be a result from the light of the sun refracting against the [reflecting] telescope"

Hey, I'm depraved on account I'm deprived!
 
2012-06-06 11:32:39 PM
I was wondering who was going to win the prize for burning their house down during the transit.
 
2012-06-06 11:33:26 PM

imprimere: Obviously, we need more legislation on telescopes, 'cause you just can't fix stupid.


Hey, a company is currently selling 1 watt blue lasers capable of instantly blinding people if the beam enters their eye, or probably blinding them if they're near the 'dot' and look at it. The casing makes it look like a light saber and I just wonder how many people/pets have gone blind form having it shined into their eye...if we aren't going to ban lasers that powerful from entering the hands of assholes, we aren't going to ban passive focusing devices like this.
 
2012-06-06 11:33:27 PM

rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.


yeah, who leaves a $10k telescope uncovered??? dumba$$
 
2012-06-06 11:33:45 PM
What this also indicates is the moran didn't have any sort of solar filter over the end. he's lucky he only burnt his house down and din't blind himself permanently.
 
2012-06-06 11:34:18 PM
i.imgur.com
 
2012-06-06 11:35:17 PM

rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.


This. That's a $3k scope, easy.

My first scope was a 2" refractor on a crappy tripod. I graduated to a 3" reflector, got good with that before moving on to my 8" light bucket.

Never spent more than $300 on any of them.

Treadmills and telescopes, never buy them new.
 
2012-06-06 11:37:22 PM
Defnitely more dollars than sense (I can only dream of having that particular scope model). Seriously, I wouldn't even leave it out on the patio even with the caps on.

/took his six inch SCT to watch the Venus transit.
//paid $800 for it and am a lot more careful.
 
2012-06-06 11:44:06 PM
"Carefree house fire" in the article headline, and that Farkline (Fark headline) is what you went with, subby? I am disappoint.
 
zez
2012-06-06 11:50:30 PM
"We believe it could be a result from the light of the sun refracting against the telescope," Williams said.

Williams described the situation as similar to sunlight directed through a magnifying glass


very similar or exactly similar?
 
2012-06-06 11:52:42 PM

Hrist: imprimere: Obviously, we need more legislation on telescopes, 'cause you just can't fix stupid.

Hey, a company is currently selling 1 watt blue lasers capable of instantly blinding people if the beam enters their eye, or probably blinding them if they're near the 'dot' and look at it. The casing makes it look like a light saber and I just wonder how many people/pets have gone blind form having it shined into their eye...if we aren't going to ban lasers that powerful from entering the hands of assholes, we aren't going to ban passive focusing devices like this.


I was being completely sarcastic. I can't stand that we add a new law everytime stupid does stupid.

And how we don't have legislation yet for purchasing class 4 (or any non "eye safe") lasers is beyond me. I'm guessing we're one tragic event away from this hitting a politician's radar. I would actually support this long before most gun measures.
 
2012-06-06 11:56:22 PM
Didn't anyone ever tell you to make sure your optics were covered?

1.bp.blogspot.com


/maybe he was just trying to make popcorn
 
2012-06-06 11:56:47 PM

ecmoRandomNumbers: I'd like to think that somewhere in the cosmos, Carl Sagan is giggling.


Well, I'd say yes, normally... but it's Sagan.
 
2012-06-06 11:58:20 PM

zez: "We believe it could be a result from the light of the sun refracting against the telescope," Williams said.

Williams described the situation as similar to sunlight directed through a magnifying glass

very similar or exactly similar?


Somewhat almost similar

/sort of
 
2012-06-07 12:04:23 AM
just how did the sun refract off of a reflector? it's got to pass through to refract.
 
2012-06-07 12:06:56 AM

zez: Williams described the situation as similar to sunlight directed through a magnifying glass

very similar or exactly similar?


It's a different mechanism (concave mirror vs. convex lens), so I'd go with plain "similar".
 
2012-06-07 12:13:27 AM

dsergison: just how did the sun refract off of a reflector? it's got to pass through to refract.


Maybe it needed recoating really badly?
 
2012-06-07 12:13:55 AM

itsfullofstars: rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.

This. That's a $3k scope, easy.

My first scope was a 2" refractor on a crappy tripod. I graduated to a 3" reflector, got good with that before moving on to my 8" light bucket.

Never spent more than $300 on any of them.

Treadmills and telescopes, never buy them new.


More like $7-10k, depending on the mount, plus any accessories such as eyepieces. The tube assembly alone is a good $4k.

/direct sunlight + curved corrector plate = toast
 
2012-06-07 12:14:58 AM

jaytkay: TFA: "We believe it could be a result from the light of the sun refracting against the [reflecting] telescope"

Hey, I'm depraved on account I'm deprived!


so take 'im to a headshrinker!
 
2012-06-07 12:28:56 AM

common sense is an oxymoron: itsfullofstars: rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.

This. That's a $3k scope, easy.

My first scope was a 2" refractor on a crappy tripod. I graduated to a 3" reflector, got good with that before moving on to my 8" light bucket.

Never spent more than $300 on any of them.

Treadmills and telescopes, never buy them new.

More like $7-10k, depending on the mount, plus any accessories such as eyepieces. The tube assembly alone is a good $4k.

/direct sunlight + curved corrector plate = toast


yeah--a fully-loaded C14 is about ten grand minimum., with some of the lower-end models down to about seven. And they're big, heavy bastards, too.
 
2012-06-07 12:29:16 AM

dsergison: just how did the sun refract off of a reflector? it's got to pass through to refract.


Bad choice of words.

The mirror itself wouldn't be responsible (its focal point is just outside the corrector plate, so any reflected light should be well diffused by the time it reaches the patio ceiling). If the telescope is responsible at all, it would pretty much have to be light reflecting off the front surface of the corrector plate. Depending on the fabrication process used, this surface can have a concave curve, which could reflect a focused spot of light onto the ceiling.

Or, maybe the guy left an unfiltered scope aimed at the sun, with an eyepiece and diagonal in place. This could project a narrow, collimated beam several hundred times brighter than direct sunlight onto the ceiling. But that would be beyond stupid...
 
2012-06-07 12:32:03 AM
Came for Lemony Snicket reference. Am disappoint.
 
2012-06-07 12:33:04 AM
Most of my house fires have been Carefree.
 
2012-06-07 12:35:53 AM

bird girl: Most of my house fires have been Carefree.


as long as they weren't Stayfree.
 
2012-06-07 12:36:16 AM

common sense is an oxymoron: dsergison: just how did the sun refract off of a reflector? it's got to pass through to refract.

Bad choice of words.

The mirror itself wouldn't be responsible (its focal point is just outside the corrector plate, so any reflected light should be well diffused by the time it reaches the patio ceiling)...


Heh. As if there weren't another mirror in the light path. It would take a hell of a collimation error to shift the focal point off the secondary.

FTFM.
 
2012-06-07 12:40:19 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.

'more dollars than sense'


why dont you make like a tree... and get outta here!
 
2012-06-07 12:44:02 AM
If only everyone had telescopes - someone else could have burned that telescope before it had a chance to burn down the house.
 
2012-06-07 12:45:23 AM

zzrhardy: If only everyone had telescopes - someone else could have burned that telescope before it had a chance to burn down the house.


David Byrne had one.
 
2012-06-07 12:45:37 AM
farm9.staticflickr.com

/I should be studying
//no time for a real try at that
 
2012-06-07 12:59:33 AM

common sense is an oxymoron: /direct sunlight + curved corrector plate = toast


You can make toast with them, too?
 
2012-06-07 01:00:20 AM
Hard to tell, but the burned out telescope in the picture looks like it has a solar filter on it. If that is the case then light should be dimmed enough that it will not start a fire. And even if it was strong enough, the focal point out of the eye piece should only be a couple of feet away at most. It would not be intense enough to start a fire on the roof of the patio.

And, if he did not have a filter on and left the uncovered then all I have to say is, "Ha ha!"
 
2012-06-07 01:08:21 AM
ecmoRandomNumbers: I'd like to think that somewhere in the cosmos, Carl Sagan is giggling.

I was thinking Archemedes, but I guess Sagan works
 
2012-06-07 01:18:40 AM

Mock26: Hard to tell, but the burned out telescope in the picture looks like it has a solar filter on it. If that is the case then light should be dimmed enough that it will not start a fire. And even if it was strong enough, the focal point out of the eye piece should only be a couple of feet away at most. It would not be intense enough to start a fire on the roof of the patio.

And, if he did not have a filter on and left the uncovered then all I have to say is, "Ha ha!"


The broken-window thing on the front of the scope is more likely the Schmidt corrector plate in its mounting ring. A solar filter would be placed in front of this and be more nearly flush with the extreme front of the tube:

reflow.scribd.com

ecx.images-amazon.com

Interestingly, the cheap-looking Mylar filter is at least as good optically as the fancy-looking glass filter.
 
2012-06-07 01:22:42 AM

rockhound: His first scope was a 14" job. Then he leaves it outside without a cap over the tube. Then he sets his house on fire.

I'm guessing more money than sense.


^^this. Not only that but he was warned about the problem.

At least one expects telescopes to focus. I've heard of a fire caused by water dish.

imprimere: And how we don't have legislation yet for purchasing class 4 (or any non "eye safe") lasers is beyond me. I'm guessing we're one tragic event away from this hitting a politician's radar. I would actually support this long before most gun measures.


So long as it's not too restrictive I agree. People don't realize how powerful they really are. My wife has permanent marks on her retina from 1/3 of watt in a very short pulse. (Said laser was in the hands of a retinologist, it wasn't an accident.)
 
2012-06-07 01:23:50 AM

jaytkay: TFA: "We believe it could be a result from the light of the sun refracting against the [reflecting] telescope"

Hey, I'm depraved on account I'm deprived!


That's quite the jump, but at least you stuck the landing!
 
2012-06-07 01:26:54 AM

fusillade762: common sense is an oxymoron: /direct sunlight + curved corrector plate = toast

You can make toast with them, too?


If you can place a slice of bread at the focal point of a mirror or lens of the appropriate size, then you can make toast.

The difference between this:

www.loc.gov

and a telescope is mainly one of mirror quality.
 
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