View Full Version here: : Just picked this bad boy up for $75 - What do you think?
09-03-2012, 02:01 PM
Got her today and PERFECTLY clear skies tonight so going to take it up to a Mt near me and make a night of looking at stars and stuff! :D
Worth $75? Brand new it is $530 from National Geographic haha.
Edit: also, came with 4 different lenses and a moon filter! :)
09-03-2012, 02:05 PM
Where did you purchase it? Direct from O/S?
09-03-2012, 02:06 PM
Bargain , where from ? Hope you enjoy it !
09-03-2012, 02:11 PM
did you make sure it has got the mirrors! ha ha
that is unbeleivable for $75
09-03-2012, 02:12 PM
Cash Converters near me. They had no idea what they where selling haha. It was posted for $120 but I just undid and did up some stuff to make it look half faulty and they brought it down to $75, kind of feel bad but didn't have $120 to spend haha! :P
09-03-2012, 02:14 PM
You evil person :lol:
Quite the bargain :P
09-03-2012, 02:22 PM
Couple other images to get a better view of it.
Can anyone tell me what the bottom photo is? It's a mini scope looking thing built into the mount. have to get right down to look at it and it has them markings inside.
that's the polar scope - used for aligning the main scope to the south celestial pole.
In the northern hemisphere they align to the northern celestial pole using Polaris - down here with have sigma octans to align to the SCP.
Plenty of details on this site about how the achieve that.
09-03-2012, 02:37 PM
nice find well done! That scope with the markings is a Polar Scope for polar Alignment i believe. Mine has the provision for it but when i bought the scope and eq3 mount it did not come with it. I am currently in the process of learning Polar Alignment.
09-03-2012, 02:41 PM
Awesome, thanks for that! Learning something new every day lately! :P
Time to look up how to polar align! :P
09-03-2012, 02:53 PM
That scope & mount look quite well made. I wonder what the manufacturer was, looks a little like Vixen to me.
09-03-2012, 03:07 PM
It has Australia Geographic on it hey, so not sure :|
09-03-2012, 03:39 PM
Alas, the nearest cash-converter to me is pretty au-fait with optical equipment :(
Doesn't know squat about books tho'! :D
09-03-2012, 03:50 PM
I hate doing this. :sadeyes:
I had a guy come to us at MAS with one of these a while back. He picked his up for about the $75 mark too.
We could not adjust it to collimation - it ran out of adjustment and even the moon was badly out of focus - and lop-sided. The mount itself jerked around so much nothing would stay in the FOV. It's incredibly light metal and has no strength - the slow motion gearing did not work very well at all. It may look like a Vixen or even a Tak (colour), but it is certainly neither.
Sorry to be brutally honest. :shrug: It was certainly fun trying to get it to work though, and maybe after time we would have figured out why it wouldn't collimate. Maybe you'll have success with this particular one. Here's hoping! :)
09-03-2012, 03:58 PM
Does it have a lens in the bottom of the focuser..?
09-03-2012, 04:05 PM
Nicely done for $75.
I'm familiar with this scope. Be careful not to over tighten ANY of the threads, even if the logical thing would be to have them firm. "National Geographic" isn't a garrantee of quality. This scope is a mass produced demon I'm sorry to say. The mount will not last long as the scope is really too big for it, and the single counter weight isn't enough to balance the OTA. You would be better off making a dob mount for the OTA.
I could do a song and dance over your purchase, but I'd be not truthful.
The optics may be ok. Only a night under the stars will tell. Take it slow with this scope. Don't rush the mount.
Also, at f/4, coma will be very obvious at low power. This will look like the stars around the edge of the field of view have little comet tails that radiate out from the centre. This isn't a defect! It's a phenomenon that happens when coupling a fast Newtonian with low power eyepieces.
I hope you've scored a ripper scope. I really do. It will make it an outstanding buy.
09-03-2012, 05:20 PM
Matt ... This scope is ok for a person who's starting out ... with very little money to spend.... Yes ... It's a bargain.
It's ok for general observation of the moon, Jupiter, some dso's ( deep sky objects ) ... but don't expect to much from it .... if it's real light in weight .... the slightest breeze will have the eyepiece shaking ... terrible time getting a ' still image ' at the eyepiece.
I've heard people refer to these types of scopes as ... Department Store Scopes ' ... hence the National Geographic Branding.
But for the money you paid ...:thumbsup: ... you could probably sell it again on eBay and make a ' tidy ' profit.
09-03-2012, 05:29 PM
For $75 I would not be able to resist the urge to buy this scope either. If there are some issues with stability or optics it would become a nice project to experiment with.
Hope it is able to give nice views at the eyepiece. I am curious and would like to know how it performs.
10-03-2012, 01:18 AM
The mount does'nt look weak.Its got 2 counter weights on it.
could be in the EQ3 class.
Looks like a cheap buy but I'd be worried about the Qua;ity with national Geographic branding on it.:sadeyes::sadeyes::sadeyes::sade yes:
10-03-2012, 01:15 PM
Well it's not about cheap but value for money.. I think you got ver very good value for your money... You could not buy an eyepiece for that price even a cheap one... I think you will have lots of fun with it... Lots of comments on it's quality, but I think most people would have grabbed it for that price to see how it worked.. You just can't loose!
I have my good setup, but I also have a Dick Smiths reflector on an EQ mount that I got as a sellout for $40... Yep it's no top shelf item, but the images are pretty good and I use when friends come over or with children who have never looked through a scope before... When you get these sort of bargins you must just think of the value you got for your money...HEAPS.
Good on you
10-03-2012, 01:33 PM
We had clear skies last night. :thumbsup:
Did you get a chance to test the scope?
If so, how did it perform?
12-03-2012, 01:36 PM
Update: Well, it didn't go as good as I would have hoped. I took it out to Glass House Mt look out just north of Brisbane (About a 30 - 40min drive for me) and got it set up and everything while out there and I wasn't too impressed by it. The "slow motion" controls either don't work or I have no idea how to set up the mount. The images weren't too good either, I couldn't even see the moon it was way too blurry! Could only see one massive bright white light and that was it.
I pointed it at M42 and saw nothing, not to mention the finder scope is a heap of **** to say the least.
I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to config the mirrors I was also thinking of taking it to a "Star party" thingo that happens once a month or something near my place and seeing if someone up there can help me out.
If anyone knows of the next met up at Bracken Ridge, Brisbane is happening at the Water Res could you let me know so I can make sure I keep the night free?
Thanks for all the info as well!
12-03-2012, 02:56 PM
Sounds typical of my experience with this awful piece of equipment. I'm sorry that you were duped, as was the bloke who bought the one I felt obliged to get working for him. Nat Geo should be ashamed of themselves.
13-03-2012, 09:38 AM
If it was just a blur was it in focus ? I realise it may not the best piece of hardware but it should still reach a point where you can make out some detail on the moon eg.
I'd have a go during the day at some distant view. You may need to extend the Eye Piece to reach focus before you can write it off as a bad job. Maybe a few missing bits. My old 114 f8 Newt has an extender as normal part of the focusser. It would be useless without it.
13-03-2012, 09:46 AM
Brent - the example I tried to get going would not come into focus - at all. Between both focus extremes there was no sweet spot. The image was lop-sided and the mirror horribly mis-figured. It wasn't a case of it being a little out of kilter - it did not work at all.
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