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    Downloading open streetmap data to garmin GPS devices

    Talkytoaster does a trial/free download of the Isle of Wight at 1:25000 so you can see how the mapping looks on screen. A big difference between the Ordnance Survey and the Talkytoaster maps is that the OS map is essentially a photograph of the paper map and as you zoom there comes a point when...
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    Downloading open streetmap data to garmin GPS devices

    I have used Talkytoaster maps on my garmin device. These are not free but have a modest price and are very good. Although Talkytoaster is UK based, his maps (which are based on open-source mapping) are available for most of the world and are updated frequently. The support available from...
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    Walking boots

    Sorry to be late to the party. I go with the advice to visit a proper outdoor shop with trained staff who know about boot fitting. I prefer not to use a proprietary membrane in my boots - they never last long, take an age to dry out when the inside of the boot gets wet (when not if) and they...
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    What tripod for Opticron MM4 60 Travelscope

    Sorry for the late reply - I have been away from home with no e-mail. I use a Gitzo G2380 head which I got for a very good price used from Wex. The head is heavy and but for the very good price I probably wouldn't have bought it. But the head is very well made and in excellent condition and...
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    What tripod for Opticron MM4 60 Travelscope

    I use a Benro TMA37c which is a 3 section carbon fibre tripod and that appears very similar to the "Wild"series save that it is black and doesn't come with a head. I am about the same height as the OP. I rarely need the centre column raised.
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    How to carry heavy binoculars in the field and on long hikes

    I use a RY Ultra Harness with my 8x42 bins. The cords are made of a slightly elastic mterial not wire and do not cut into me at all. The toggle thing sits at the bottom of the neck not the back. I am sure a similar arrangement of cords could be made DIY but the RY version has quick-release...
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    Tripod and head for slight female birder

    You could try Ace Optics (Bristol) or The Birders Store in Worcester or some of the reputable dealers who have excellent returns policies such as Cley Spy or Focus Optics or Uttings but sending stuff back could prove a bit costly in postage. I bought my tripod from Harrison cameras in Sheffield...
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    10x42 v 10x32 advice for a newbie.

    If weight really is an issue get a Rick Young Ultralight harness from somewhere like The Birder's Store - makes all the difference.
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    10x42 v 10x32 advice for a newbie.

    I support the view of speaking to a good optics shop and seeing what they have. Don't rule out used from a reputable supplier. In fact, if you are "pretty set" on a 10x 42, have a chat with In-Focus about these
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    Benro Wild 1/2 Carbon Fibre Birding Kit - spec help/info please

    Thanks. I hope the kit 1 provides all you need from it. The Benro stuff I have seen seems well made and robust.
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    Benro Wild 1/2 Carbon Fibre Birding Kit - spec help/info please

    I bought a Benro TMA 37c from Harrison Cameras in Sheffield and needed a spare aluminium centre column to use with my hide clamp. I found Harrisons to be very good and have bought from them again. They might be able to help you. In the alternative, try [email protected] macgroup are the...
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    Vismigging and back problems

    I would have thought seeing a physiotherapist might be more useful than seeing the doctor. The physio will be able to recommend appropriate exercises to strengthen the muscles and likely advise on posture etcetera.
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    65 or 80mm Telescope

    I agree with Mono. Let me declare my position. My own scope is an 88mm angled scope. I also have access to and regularly use angled 65 and 80mm Swarowski scopes. In good conditions the brightness of each is fine. In overcast conditions the 65 keeps up most of the time. All of that said, I find...
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    Scope histories

    Mine is a very short history. Kowa 883 + 25/60 zoom. I have had regular access to Swaro 65 and 80 scopes and went out to buy an ATS 80 and ended up with the Kowa.
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    Are there are good deals on the KOWA TSN-883 at the mo?

    Lockdown won't last forever and you can then enjoy your scope. It will still be there. The 7% discount might not.
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    Are there are good deals on the KOWA TSN-883 at the mo?

    Try Uttings - they sometimes have good offers on. That said, at the moment Uttings are 7% ish more than Ace.
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    Tripods?

    I use a Benro carbon fibre tripod which I think is essentially the same as the "Wild" version. I think the "Wild" package represents very good value for money. I have no complaints at all about my own Benro tripod. That said, I bought a spare aluminium column from Benro so I can use that in a...
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    Best light-weight tripod and head for Kowa 883

    I have a Kowa 883 and use a Benro 37c tripod with a Gitzo 2380 head. The head is very good but heavy but was a very good used buy. The tripod weighs 1.85kg and currently costs about £270 (Benro Mach 3 series 3, 3 leg sections). Together, this combination works very well but a lighter head would...
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    Kowa 883 vs Harpia 85

    I have an extender for my scope and find it a bit difficult to put on and take off if my hands are cold. In addition, to Paddy's observations I find that depth of focus is reduced (or I think it is). Unstable air can also be an issue at the greater magnifications (hardly the manufacturer's...
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    Kowa 883 vs Harpia 85

    In the North West of England, I see mainly Opticron and Swaro. I rarely see Kowa products on view and feel a bit of an outsider with mine.
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    Kowa 883 vs Harpia 85

    I wonder if the Swarovski are popular because, not only are the Swaros very good, they are a "safe buy". I know Swaros are a very good instrument (I Use them regularly) and lots of birders use them so a sort of momentum builds up whereas one has to be a bit brave to go for something else. So if...
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    Advice on mid-size scopes?

    Re the Mulepack - as we are confessing. I pass the strap of the stay-on-case through the Mulepack carry handle so that if the scope does become free of the tripod it won't fall to the ground. It might take a chunk out of my leg but that will repair cheaper than the scope.
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    Advice on mid-size scopes?

    Sancho, daft question perhaps - given the weight savings between the scopes you are considering is modest, have you considered getting a Mulepack or similar to carry your existing kit? Much less expense than than a new scope. I have a Mulepack and they are brilliant.
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    'Choose any two'...

    Singlereed - thank you for letting us know the outcome. It is frustrating when there is a discussion but the outcomes remain a mystery. Glad you got sorted and you are right - get out and use the scope.
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    'Choose any two'...

    When you are watching birds at reserves do you only use the hides? If so perhaps a hide clamp with column such as that produced by Opticronhttps://www.opticron.co.uk/our-products/tripods-and-mounts/clamps-and-mounts/bc-2-hide-clamp-cw-157qk-panhead rather than a tripod might suffice? If you will...
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