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  #1  
Old 22-04-2021, 11:40 PM
AdamJL
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Planning to upgrade the OTA - Suggestions? (refractors only)

Hey folks

So I'm starting to plan my next scope purchase. I'm going to chase a bit of aperture, so will be aiming for 130mm (coming from 80mm)

I'm sticking with a refractor because they're simple.

I've narrowed it down to
- 4 different TSO options (they have a few 130/140mm options), but means importing from Germany
- Astro-Tech 130EDT (importing as above)
- WO 132 FLT
- Orion 130 ED triplet

Aiming for
- triplet
- good glass
- no slower than f/7
- to Taks/Tecs or anything in that price range
- 3" focuser and needs to rotate
- Can be convinced to drop down to 120mm, but that's it (e.g. SW Esprit 120)
- 140mm is an option, but they get expensive quickly (although the TSO variant seems relatively well priced)

Scope will be on an EQ6-R, and shooting through an ASI2600

Any suggestions beyond the ones I've listed? Best places to buy?

Thanks in advance
Adam
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  #2  
Old 23-04-2021, 07:44 AM
Zuts
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Hi,

I recently moved from a TV85 to a Esprit 120 plus ASI2600 MC plus AZEQ6.

I am very happy with my purchase and am enjoying the very well corrected field.

I have only had it for a month or two but feel it is very well made and have had no issues with the focuser.

I have a few photos in the beginners section if you would like to see some examples.

Can certainly recommend.

Cheers
Paul
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  #3  
Old 23-04-2021, 08:19 AM
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TEC140 is the dominant scope in the 140 range but 1 year wait for new and around US$6500 for 2nd hand.

WO 132 has seen some good images hereon this site.

TS Optics seem to be a good supplier.

APM do a 140 FPL51/lanthanum double which gets good reviews and its cheaper. They also sell a Riccardi reducer for it. Not sure if they sell a flattener but TS Optics sells one.

Greg.
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Old 23-04-2021, 08:24 AM
Imme (Jon)
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Iím running a flt132 on an eq6r and I have nothing but praise for it. I would suggest belt modding the mount though.
Field flattener is needed on an asi1600 so suggest you will need the same. Focuser is rock solid and they are really well built.....they look nice too.
I have mine kitted out with a zwo eaf for focus, a guidescope and filter wheel....works really well as a package.

Last years David Malin award for deep space was won on this exact setup so canít be too bad. It was competing against much more expensive telescopes. I picked mine up second hand on here
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  #5  
Old 23-04-2021, 09:31 AM
glend (Glen)
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I am a big fan of TS, and have imported several quality refractors from them. All of the TS Photoline range have high quality glass, well figured and colour correct; focusers are all R&P and imaging capable. As far as shipping is concerned, they use UPS to Australia, and yes that can seem pricey but it is very fast (door to your door in a week at most) and UPS handle all custom clearance (often cleared while inbound) and will let you know if there are any clearance charges, which you can pay over the phone. I will add the the way TS package their scopes for internation shipment is outstanding, always thick triple boxed, with the two internal boxes floating in bead medium ( never had any damage concerns).
The last TS scope I bought was a TS 115mm triplet, f7, and the 3" reducer corrector (highly recommended for imaging and it fits most of the range). Alex is present owner of that scope.

I would also second the comment below, regarding quality Doublets in the larger sizes that interest you. It is simply a weight based decision given you are limiting yourself by sticking with the EQ6.
The 140 FPL51/lanthanum Doublet is a very good scope and highly regarded, with significant weight saving over an equivalent Triplet. If you insist on a Triplet at that size, I would suggest you upgrade your mount to a minimum of something like the CGX. You need to consider the overall imaging equipped weight, not just the scope weight, and Triplets are very nose heavy.

I will suggest a scope outside of your list, the Skywatcher ED150 DX. It is a well figured Doublet, at native f8, but has a reducer available. Not terribly heavy. I own one of these, which i image with, but mostly use for EAA type imaging these days. They are on sale at the moment, but I suggest the DX model is preferred for imaging, as it has the big Esprit focuser. The ED150DX can be in your hands for less than $3k, from Astro Anarchy in Brisbane. The standard version you can buy for $2400. It is alot of scope (150mm) for that price, and comes with the most serious aluminium shipping case I have seen. From a visual point of view it is great, very well figured glass. For imaging I would say it is good, not as great as a Triplet with fpl-53, as it does have a slight blue fringe tendancy on some very bright star targets, but honestly it is not that worrisome.
Beyond that the Espirt 150 triplet might be worth looking at, but that scope is above $6k.

Last edited by glend; 23-04-2021 at 12:41 PM.
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Old 23-04-2021, 05:31 PM
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Hi Adam

I started with an esprit 80 and than moved to a esprit 120 late last year . And could not be any happier . I originally was going to purchase an esprit 150 but then realised that most of my intended targets mainly nebula would not fit in my field of view , so I went for the 120 it is built like a tank. I also thought it was fairly well priced as well
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  #7  
Old 24-04-2021, 05:10 PM
AdamJL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zuts View Post
I recently moved from a TV85 to a Esprit 120 plus ASI2600 MC plus AZEQ6.
Paul
Great to hear, Paul. 120 is as narrow as I want to go, and I know the Esprit is a good scope. Are you seeing a noticeable increase in resolution vs your 85?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbradley View Post
APM do a 140 FPL51/lanthanum double which gets good reviews and its cheaper. They also sell a Riccardi reducer for it. Not sure if they sell a flattener but TS Optics sells one.

Greg.
Interesting. As the owner of a doublet, I have no problems buying another, except for CA issues. I'll have to look into how the APM handles fringing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imme View Post
Iím running a flt132 on an eq6r and I have nothing but praise for it. I would suggest belt modding the mount though.
Field flattener is needed on an asi1600 so suggest you will need the same. Focuser is rock solid and they are really well built.....they look nice too.
I have mine kitted out with a zwo eaf for focus, a guidescope and filter wheel....works really well as a package.

Last years David Malin award for deep space was won on this exact setup so canít be too bad. It was competing against much more expensive telescopes. I picked mine up second hand on here
Ahh, really good to hear. Right now I'm leaning towards the WO, but it's at the top end of my budget. But it'd be nice to have local support, not importing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by glend View Post
I am a big fan of TS, and have imported several quality refractors from them. All of the TS Photoline range have high quality glass, well figured and colour correct; focusers are all R&P and imaging capable. As far as shipping is concerned, they use UPS to Australia, and yes that can seem pricey but it is very fast (door to your door in a week at most) and UPS handle all custom clearance (often cleared while inbound) and will let you know if there are any clearance charges, which you can pay over the phone. I will add the the way TS package their scopes for internation shipment is outstanding, always thick triple boxed, with the two internal boxes floating in bead medium ( never had any damage concerns).
The last TS scope I bought was a TS 115mm triplet, f7, and the 3" reducer corrector (highly recommended for imaging and it fits most of the range). Alex is present owner of that scope.

I would also second the comment below, regarding quality Doublets in the larger sizes that interest you. It is simply a weight based decision given you are limiting yourself by sticking with the EQ6.
The 140 FPL51/lanthanum Doublet is a very good scope and highly regarded, with significant weight saving over an equivalent Triplet. If you insist on a Triplet at that size, I would suggest you upgrade your mount to a minimum of something like the CGX. You need to consider the overall imaging equipped weight, not just the scope weight, and Triplets are very nose heavy.

I will suggest a scope outside of your list, the Skywatcher ED150 DX. It is a well figured Doublet, at native f8, but has a reducer available. Not terribly heavy. I own one of these, which i image with, but mostly use for EAA type imaging these days. They are on sale at the moment, but I suggest the DX model is preferred for imaging, as it has the big Esprit focuser. The ED150DX can be in your hands for less than $3k, from Astro Anarchy in Brisbane. The standard version you can buy for $2400. It is alot of scope (150mm) for that price, and comes with the most serious aluminium shipping case I have seen. From a visual point of view it is great, very well figured glass. For imaging I would say it is good, not as great as a Triplet with fpl-53, as it does have a slight blue fringe tendancy on some very bright star targets, but honestly it is not that worrisome.
Beyond that the Espirt 150 triplet might be worth looking at, but that scope is above $6k.
Thanks for the suggestions. The Esprit 150 is a dream, but yes, above my budget. And also probably at the weight limit.

Have you any concerns for warranty with TSO? That's the biggest issue for me.
I mean, when I add up all the costs of shipping and taxes to get the TSO scopes and flatteners here, it's basically equal (or a touch less) than a local WO scope
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Old 24-04-2021, 05:45 PM
Wilsil (Wilco)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glend View Post
I am a big fan of TS, and have imported several quality refractors from them. All of the TS Photoline range have high quality glass, well figured and colour correct; focusers are all R&P and imaging capable.
Hi Glen, how are those focusers? Can they hold a minimum of 3 kg without slipping?
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  #9  
Old 09-05-2021, 03:53 PM
AdamJL
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Narrowed it down to the Esprit 120 and the WO 132.
I decided against TS, mainly because when I add shipping and import/GST, I'm not saving a thing (when including the Field Flattener).

I love that the Esprit comes with a Field Flattener included in the package. And the benefit of the WO come down to 12mm of aperture and focal length. It's the minimum I'd want to use to shoot galaxies, so that needs to be considered.

Anyway, hope to make a decision in the next couple of months, so expect a wet Spring and Summer whatever I choose
Sorry!!
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  #10  
Old 09-05-2021, 04:12 PM
AdamJL
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Also, I think I'm most excited about getting to make a case for the new scope with the leftover walnut I have in the garage
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  #11  
Old 09-05-2021, 05:36 PM
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The esprit comes with a pretty decent transport case with really nice wheels on the bottom. These are both excellent scope and you would be well happy with either choice
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  #12  
Old 09-05-2021, 07:25 PM
AdamJL
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Can I ask how you've got the backfocus setup, Kuz?

I see the field flattener has a 75?mm backfocus which is a bit weird. What tubes have you got setup to achieve this?
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Old 09-05-2021, 10:09 PM
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Hi Adam . I only have 1 off 16.5mm spacer that came with my.zwo camera as I also have my filter wheel in the set up
As per attached photo
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  #14  
Old 10-05-2021, 04:58 PM
AdamJL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kuz View Post
Hi Adam . I only have 1 off 16.5mm spacer that came with my.zwo camera as I also have my filter wheel in the set up
As per attached photo
Hi Kuz

That's interesting.
On page 9 of the manual for the Esprit it says to have exactly 75mm

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/00...prit120EDT.pdf

But it looks like they aren't including the back end of the corrector itself, which is both in your image, and their website.
Your ZWO filter wheel I think is 20mm,
So that would be:

Camera Flange to Sensor = 17.5
ZWO filter wheel = 20
Additional spacer = 16.5
meaning the extra bit at the back of the flattener is 21mm?

I've only got a 21mm spacer, a 16.5mm spacer so will likely need another spacer, but at 20mm..
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Old 10-05-2021, 06:01 PM
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Hi Adam

I have attached the following screen shot from the zwo web sites. I use the same set up on both my rigs . One with a 294pro and the other with 1600pro. Hope this helps
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Old 10-05-2021, 07:34 PM
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https://cfftelescopes.eu/product/refractor-135-mm-f6
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Old 10-05-2021, 08:54 PM
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lazjen (Chris)
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I get the impression that the CFF might be just a bit outside the proposed budget range from the OP...
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Old 10-05-2021, 09:03 PM
AdamJL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kuz View Post
Hi Adam

I have attached the following screen shot from the zwo web sites. I use the same set up on both my rigs . One with a 294pro and the other with 1600pro. Hope this helps
Cheers, Kuz! That looks good, it gives me some options.


Quote:
Originally Posted by lazjen View Post
I get the impression that the CFF might be just a bit outside the proposed budget range from the OP...
Ha, yeah. I even said no Tecs/Taks and one of the first suggestion was a Tec (but totally forgiven as the rest of the post was about scopes in my range)
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Old 10-05-2021, 11:37 PM
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Ha, yeah. I even said no Tecs/Taks and one of the first suggestion was a Tec (but totally forgiven as the rest of the post was about scopes in my range)[/QUOTE]


actually your post doesn't say no tecs/taks
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  #20  
Old 11-05-2021, 01:03 AM
Constant (David)
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https://www.testar.com.au/collection...arpstar-121sdq

The above is a delight. Forgive the cut & paste, it's worth a look.
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