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Old 12-01-2010, 05:12 PM
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iceman (Mike)
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Review: SkyWatcher 114mm (4.5”) by 900mm Newtonian on EQ2 mount

Colin Hut (ColHut) has kindly done a review of the SkyWatcher 114mm (4.5”) by 900mm Newtonian on EQ2 mount.

You can read the review at the IceInSpace Reviews page, or directly by clicking on the link below:

SkyWatcher 114mm (4.5”) by 900mm Newtonian on EQ2 mount

Thanks to Colin for taking the time to write the review and share it with IceInSpace. If you'd like to contribute a review or article to IceInSpace, please Contact Us.

Last edited by iceman; 13-01-2010 at 06:44 AM.
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Old 13-01-2010, 06:44 AM
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Old 24-05-2012, 05:37 PM
ColHut (Colin)
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To bring this review up to date, I would just like to add that I added a light-weight Rigel Quickfinder over a year ago to help get things in the fov of my 6x30 finder in my light-polluted skies. This was a good move.

I also had a 4" long counterweight bar extension made up which allowed me to get better balance. This meant I could take off the thin lead sheet and the counterweight now sits at about 110% of its original length, just past the end of the unmodified counterweight bar.

Batteries seem to last a very long time, (I'm only using my third set) so perhaps I am not getting out often enough.

Using the scope to view things directly south (now I have moved a few trees) is a nuisance at higher angles as the controls tend to hit the mount legs but that is life.

Finally, I recently used the scope on hard compacted pea-gravel surface and the vibrations were astonishing. I should have broken up the surface a bit I suspect. Still I definitely prefer lawn.

Overall the scope continues to provide reasonable views of planetary objects , some Nebula, and many Globulars.

regards
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Old 24-05-2012, 06:51 PM
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jjjnettie (Jeanette)
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Thanks for taking the trouble to write the review Colin.
I'm looking at buying a cheap, light weight eq motorised mount for my wide field work, mounting just the camera and lens on it.
I'll take what you've said into consideration.
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Old 24-05-2012, 11:44 PM
ColHut (Colin)
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Thanks for that.

I don't know how much you would be willing to pay but there is no doubt that the SV-1 (now discontinued I think) and EQ3 mounts are significantly more capable. The EQ3 mounts have 360 deg worm gears on all axis, and the newer versions come with goto (at a price).

Doubtless the EQ2 (and probably 1) can handle a camera.

I think they are had fairly cheaply at Andrews.

regards
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Old 25-05-2012, 12:13 AM
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I've been window shopping at Andrews this afternoon.
I see what you mean about the package deals. The 130mm F5 newt on the EQ2 looks pretty good. I could see me having some fun with that little scope.
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  #7  
Old 22-01-2017, 08:29 PM
ColHut (Colin)
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An update on this little scope:


Eight and a half years later having had light to moderate use it still continues to perform adequately. Looked at over time the cost per hour has been rather little.

The setting circles continue to annoy me as they are too small, badly placed, have no vernier, and are at best accurate to within a degree only (half the smallest division). Still that is just good enough for the max TFOV of about 1.7 degrees.

The latitude adjustment scale is out by 2 degrees, so I use a digital level to correct for this when travelling to new latitudes.

Having left both slow motion control cables on does mean they can get in the way. On balance though they are better left on.

The free slewing clutches can be very hard to find in the dark at odd angles even with practice!

It is affected by strong gusts and breezes as the OTA is quite long.

OTA weight with Rigel QF, 6x30 RACI finder, electric focuser and eyepiece is 7lb 12 oz (about 3.5kg). Orion and others give its capacity as 9lb.

An EQ 3-2 mount with polar scope and proper bearings would be a better mount for a scope of this length.

And in the field?
A recent trip to Bremer Bay allowed its use in some very dark (if cloudy) skies. Despite a side trip with telescope on the back seat on 100km of unsealed road, the telescope needed only a slight tweak to collimation (Thanks Howie!) on set-up.

M42 was breathtaking. The planets although low in the west were easily found with the Rigel QF. The Pleiades stunning. The Milky Way rich with stars. No doubt dark skies are worth several inches of aperture. Even using only the compass (adjusted for magnetic variation) and the digital level to polar align still provided 15 minutes tracking in a 20mm eyepiece. Probably some luck there.

I am looking to upgrade to a slightly more capable mount, maybe even a new OTA (130 x 900) some time, but it will not likely be goto (although that could change). I have enjoyed learning to use the EQ mount for all its foibles, and I very much enjoy the EQ ‘tracking’ which makes viewing a pleasure with plenty of time for sips of tea without worrying about where the target has gone. With regret it being more portable, does get more use than my 10” dob.

regards
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