#1  
Old 23-12-2009, 10:16 PM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
Gidday All

Thanks for a great place to learn, I literally stumbled upon the site while surfing for information on telescopes and it look's like I've hit the jackpot.

Just wondering if you kind folk could help me out with some informed opinion on the following.

I'm a complete novice but have just decided that I want to purchase a telescope after years of wanting to, I have done a bit of research over the past month or so and have decided on an 8 or 10 inch dob as my first scope depending on budget. Right choice?

My questions are , Which brand is best (I know it's a matter of opinion mostly but would anyone here consider a Seben?) I'm after a quality brand that I can use and pass on to my Kids in a few years, so as a newbie I'd just like to maybe get an idea of which Brands you guys/girls think of as quality as there are so many choices out there.

Next up apart from the Orion intelliscope are there other goto Dob scopes? I would like to have a motor drive at least to allow for easier viewing but would like to maybe add something after purchasing the scope. Are there after market add ons that are available and if so is it dependent on the brand?

My plan is to buy a quality scope and put any excess dollars into purchasing additional eyepieces, filters etc, learn both the sky and the scope (or vice versa) and then add on a motor drive or goto drive as $ allow, I'd like to know if I'm heading in the right direction here and would love some advice.

I apologise if theses questions have already been answered here, I have had a quick squiz of the newbies pages but I am quite eager to get me a scope and start seeing and learning.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 23-12-2009, 10:37 PM
Terry B's Avatar
Terry B
Country living & viewing

Terry B is offline
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Armidale
Posts: 2,781
Welcome SC
Don't do the Seben.
As for brands there are lots of choice. Look at what Andrews communication sells. They are good value and the right price.
As for motordrives for dobs. These are fairly expensive and usually only used for big dobs. Start with the non motorised. Maybe add an argo naevis as an object finder.
I think that this is a better starting option. For tracking most people would get an equatorial mount but this is much harder to learn with and is much more expensive.

Last edited by Terry B; 23-12-2009 at 10:38 PM. Reason: typo
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 23-12-2009, 10:45 PM
leon's Avatar
leon
Registered User

leon is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: ballarat
Posts: 11,390
Jeff, mate i can understand your excitement of wandering out side to see the night sky.

However I feel you should have a big breath and slow down a little, you are expecting to much from buying your first scope with all the ad on's you have listed.

I will give you some sound advice, start at the beginning, and spend your dollars on a good pair of Binoculars and lay under the stars in your back yard and explore, you will be rewarded.

To many people go out and buy scopes and stuff, and after their fist attempt become disappointed of what they can really see.

It takes time and experience as you progress through your hobby.

Trust me mate we have all been there.

Leon
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 23-12-2009, 10:48 PM
Liz's Avatar
Liz
Registered User

Liz is offline
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Beautiful SE Tassie
Posts: 4,734
Welcome Jeff .... another North Queenslander!!!
Terry gives great advice .... check out Andrews/Bintel/My Astro Shop etc .... lots of sites with great scopes.
Dobs are quick and easy, the prices are coming down a little for some tracking, but not the best mount forfull tracking. The equatorial mount is the go if you want all that automated stuff.
The Skywatcher Dob is very popular at the moment, and very good quality. An 8" Skywatcher Dob would be nice, and not too expensive, and easy to use. Andrews (and others) sell this Dob with tarcking for under the $1000. Very nice indeed!!
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 23-12-2009, 10:54 PM
telecasterguru's Avatar
telecasterguru (Frank)
Have scope will travel!

telecasterguru is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Pitnacree NSW
Posts: 1,473
Jeff,

Welcome to IIS. I have been hooked for 12 months now and use a 10" dob and it is amazing what you can find. I also added an Argo Navis (later) but only because of the ease to find objects as I did not know the sky well enough to hop around in it. I have learnt a lot and the wonders of the sky have me enthralled night after night. (clouds permitting)
Which ever way you go in this hobby, enjoy, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

Look at the Meade and GSO dobs including the truss tube variety.

Frank
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 24-12-2009, 12:10 AM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
Quote:
Welcome SC
Don't do the Seben.
As for brands there are lots of choice. Look at what Andrews communication sells. They are good value and the right price.
As for motordrives for dobs. These are fairly expensive and usually only used for big dobs. Start with the non motorised. Maybe add an argo naevis as an object finder.
I think that this is a better starting option. For tracking most people would get an equatorial mount but this is much harder to learn with and is much more expensive.
Thanks for the nice welcome Terry, I've already ruled the Seben out as a choice based on what Ive read elswhere I only use it as an example of what not to buy, I'm planning on buying just the scope and some eyepieces first up and learning from there before adding anything else , Could you give me more info on what an argo naevis is? I'm after something that will just keep the object in view rather than a goto type motor drive, Thanks again for the nice welcome Terry.

Quote:
Jeff, mate i can understand your excitement of wandering out side to see the night sky. http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/..../winking70.gif

However I feel you should have a big breath and slow down a little, you are expecting to much from buying your first scope with all the ad on's you have listed.

I will give you some sound advice, start at the beginning, and spend your dollars on a good pair of Binoculars and lay under the stars in your back yard and explore, you will be rewarded. http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/..../winking70.gif

To many people go out and buy scopes and stuff, and after their fist attempt become disappointed of what they can really see. http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/....s/sad_eyes.gif

It takes time and experience as you progress through your hobby. http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/..../shrugging.gif

Trust me mate we have all been there. http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/....s/thumbsup.gif

Leon http://www.iceinspace.com.au/forum/....s/thumbsup.gif
G'day Leon and thanks for the sound advice, I have done the Binoculars and also the poor quality Scope thing, I was totally wowed at my first view of the moon through quite a poor scope and spent hrs and hrs looking at it over many months more than a decade ago, and then trying to check out planets with the same scope. I thought it was awsome till I checked things out a little more and found that there is much more to it, I am at a time in my life now though where I know that this is something I want to do, and I can now afford to do it.
My big breath is asking you guys for some informed advice, I am not rushing in without thinking I hope, My first aim is to buy the proper scope that will allow me to later do the add ons, My first aim is the right scope and eye pieces and then to learn the sky and scope before moving on from there, I know I have a lot to learn but that's why I registered.
Thats why I'm asking you nice people, because you have all been there and done it.

Quote:
Welcome Jeff .... another North Queenslander!!!
Terry gives great advice .... check out Andrews/Bintel/My Astro Shop etc .... lots of sites with great scopes.
Dobs are quick and easy, the prices are coming down a little for some tracking, but not the best mount forfull tracking. The equatorial mount is the go if you want all that automated stuff.
The Skywatcher Dob is very popular at the moment, and very good quality. An 8" Skywatcher Dob would be nice, and not too expensive, and easy to use. Andrews (and others) sell this Dob with tarcking for under the $1000. Very nice indeed!!
Thanks also for the nice Welcome Liz, Is there a local branch up this way ?

I have had a look at the Andrews site and while tracking is high on my list I am really after just a great scope and accessories to start out with, with the option of adding tracking and goto later on. I am also after something that is not too hard to move and is also able to handle the moves, I have a second home at Maryfarms up on the Table lands (near Mt Carbine)that will see most of the viewing, do you think that the collapsible Dob is a wise move?

Quote:
Jeff,

Welcome to IIS. I have been hooked for 12 months now and use a 10" dob and it is amazing what you can find. I also added an Argo Navis (later) but only because of the ease to find objects as I did not know the sky well enough to hop around in it. I have learnt a lot and the wonders of the sky have me enthralled night after night. (clouds permitting)
Which ever way you go in this hobby, enjoy, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

Look at the Meade and GSO dobs including the truss tube variety.

Frank
Thanks for the Warm welcome Frank, Can I ask what got you hooked M8? What brand of scope you have and why you chose it? My main task at the moment is choosing the right Dob scope that will allow me to add on later as I can afford it, While I would love to get something that I can start and view on I also want to learn as I go, Can I ask what the interval was between your original purchase of your scope and the purchase of the Argo navis and also your choice of brand that allowed your add on?

Do you move your scope around much? and what eyepieces did you buy soon after your scope purchase? Is the view that you enjoy now what you expected? Is there anything that you would do differently?

Sorry for the amount of questions but I am wanting to get as much right before I buy as possible.
Thanks Jeff
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 24-12-2009, 12:19 AM
mswhin63's Avatar
mswhin63 (Malcolm)
Registered User

mswhin63 is offline
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Para Hills, South Australia
Posts: 3,553
Gidday Jeff,

All I can say is no to SEBEN, as you can see from my footer below i have a SEBEN and it sits gathering dust. It is way over priced for the quality of the optics.

I spoke to someone who seemed to be quite favourable on all kinds of scopes no matter how cheap they seemed. After he tried mine he changed his mind.

I only kept mine to see if i can modiy it.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 24-12-2009, 12:57 AM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
Thanks for that Malcom, The Seben is one thing that I have learned so far, I actually considered it as a choice based on price and the apparent German label originally but upon researching reviews of people, it stands out as a do not touch sort of scope in the (real) astronomy world.

I have a few faves at the moment but am reluctant to make up my mind without sound advice, this is one choice I am considering and I would like some feedback

http://www.ozscopes.com.au/saxon-8-i...an-bundle.html

This is another
http://www.ozscopes.com.au/dobsonian...on-10inch.html

I would like to move around a bit between home and my second home (second home is about 400 mt above sea level). Plenty of transport space is available, I know they are bulky but for me that is not an issue, my main concern is quality.

If you were a born again newb in this day and age what would you choose?
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 24-12-2009, 01:33 AM
Octane's Avatar
Octane (Humayun)
IIS Member #671

Octane is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Canberra
Posts: 11,159
Jeff,

Any of the GSO/SkyWatcher Dobsonians will do. They all come out of the GSO factory and are rebadged.

You mention you will be transporting the scope. You will need to invest in collimation tools to sort the optics out after every move. Look in the how to section, I am sure there are tutorials on how to collimate and what tools are required. I am a refractor person (imager; visual -- what's that?!) so can't help there.

An Argo Navis should be high on your list of accessories as it will enable you to view the sky efficiently. Put aside about a grand for it. Gary Kopff is the director of Wildcard Innovations and also a very active member of this forum who will be able to answer any queries you may have. His username is gary. Check out the equipment forum for Argo Navis-related posts.

Hope this helps in some way. Welcome to IceInSpace.

Cheers.

Regards,
Humayun
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 24-12-2009, 08:23 AM
telecasterguru's Avatar
telecasterguru (Frank)
Have scope will travel!

telecasterguru is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Pitnacree NSW
Posts: 1,473
Jeff,

What got me hooked on astronomy? When I was at school I worked Thursday nights and Saturday mornings at Kmart so that I could buy a scope. (it was the 70's) It was a 127mm reflector on an alt az mount. My first view of Saturn just blew me away. Of course, as I got older other matters took precedence and I did no astronomy but I was given a small refractor last Christmas and refound that excitement from my youth. The problem now though is that the amount of gear that is available is quite extraordinary.

So, I bought a second hand Bintel 10" dob from a guy that advertised it for sale on this website. Keep your eyes peeled as you never know what will come up for sale at a very reasonable price. I paid $600 but it came with a telrad finder, a laser collimater and a couple of eyepieces. The collimater is important if you are going to transport the scope as you will have to learn how to set the mirrors if they go out of alignment during transporting, and they do. There was everything that I needed to get me started. First off I started with easy objects like M42, the Orion Nebula, it was amazing in the 10" but there was so much more to see. That is why I bought the Argo Navis. The Argo is fabulous and I would not be without it. I want to upgrade to a 16" Meade Lightbridge and it will also have an Argo.

As far as eyepieces go, there were a couple with the scope. A 2" 30mm and a 1.25" 9mm both Bintel Plossls. Very useable for learning. These eye pieces are inexpensive and very good value.

In regards to transport, I have a small Holden Barina and I strap the box into the passenger seat and can fit the scope across the back seat, just. It has to sit on the arm rests on the doors. Remember that truss dobs take up less room when transporting.

I hope this helps,

Frank
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 24-12-2009, 01:30 PM
GrahamL's Avatar
GrahamL
pro lumen

GrahamL is offline
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: ballina
Posts: 3,222
hi Jeff

I bought a 10" first time round and over again I'd probably do the same .. as others have mentioned once your looking at any of these
scopes the quality is pretty much the same.. and you can't go wrong ... unless the seben wins the day

instead of the bundle I'd spend the same dollars on a
telrad finder ,collimateing tool ,star charts or planisphere,
astronomy 2010.. and just use the eyepieces that come with the scope for the time being as that set is likely the as good as what you get with the scope anyway ... coloured filters ?.. I'm not sure many buy or use them ?



good luck with your choice
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 24-12-2009, 09:32 PM
mswhin63's Avatar
mswhin63 (Malcolm)
Registered User

mswhin63 is offline
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Para Hills, South Australia
Posts: 3,553
Quote:
Originally Posted by southerncross View Post
Thanks for that Malcom, The Seben is one thing that I have learned so far, I actually considered it as a choice based on price and the apparent German label originally but upon researching reviews of people, it stands out as a do not touch sort of scope in the (real) astronomy world.
I got sucked in by the same information. But I learn't and as I was keen to continue I bought another scope 12" collapsable DOB. Most people that buy cheap scopes would let it sit in the cupoard gathering dust.

When I went for the scope I went for the larger apeture so I would choose 10" that come with 2 lense as a good starting point. Some of the filters are a bit of a waste as i also have the kit too. I have after 9 month purchace new Baader Hyperion lenses as the Plossl which are good but not enough for me as I need glasses to view.

The Baader though with such a wider field of view i don't require th glasses as much as the standard plossl's.

One important things is that in the suburbs you won't see a lot of deep sky due to light pollution so you may need to transport the scope to dark area where you should get clearer views. Don't expect to see what photos show though. With transport you need to see if it can fit in your car when travelling. If you have a smaller car then consider collapsable DOB.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 25-12-2009, 02:30 PM
DiamondDust's Avatar
DiamondDust (Ingrid)
One day.......

DiamondDust is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Woodford, Qld
Posts: 79
Welcome Jeff

I recently got my 10" GSO Dob from Andrews - good people to deal with, and carry out the tube every time I want to view, it's 15+Kgs, then there's the mount (swivel base assembly), another 15+Kgs. Not unmanageable and at least I know it's all safe in the house afterwards. I was considering bigger better eyepieces and filters etc., but after posting a thread I decided to use what I've got to see what they can do, and how I can observe better with them. What I'm trying to say is don't rush in and spend on stuff you really don't need until you know you do. Good luck
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 25-12-2009, 05:55 PM
V-Man
Registered User

V-Man is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Queensland
Posts: 16
Quote:
Any of the GSO/SkyWatcher Dobsonians will do. They all come out of the GSO factory and are rebadged.
Eeerrrm nope. SkyWatcher is out of the Synta factory. GSO is out of Guang Sheng.

Having seen many examples of both over many years I am inclined to lean to the Synta (Sky Watcher) scopes for consistency in quality. I have seen a couple of GSO mirrors that were not really up to scratch, although I should qualify this by adding that I haven't seen a questionable one for a couple of years.

HTH

V.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 26-12-2009, 12:21 AM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
Merry Christmas All.
Thanks for all the feedback people , you have all been a great help with me making up my mind on my first real scope. Ive decided to go for the 8" solid tube sky-watcher Dob, I wanted to go the 10" but I figure as my first scope this one will still let me learn, still show me a lot of stuff, and would be a little more manageable with transport not to mention free up some $ as well for some accessories such as collimation tools and the like.
The cost was $550 delivered , 5 yr warranty , and a couple of eyepieces included hope this it not out of the ball park so to speak. I get a 1.25" super 25 and a 10*, dont know what the asterisk is for, it has a 2" focuser Diameter and a 1.25 adapter.

A few more questions of you all if you dont mind, what would be the next item on your shopping list to enhance the viewing pleasure?

I have read both pro's and Con's on having an equatorial mount for my new baby and from what I have read the Dob base is the best for viewing ease and pleasure, but what do you put it on? My main veiwing site is a nice dark beach less than a 1 minute walk from my front door with a lovely NE aspect, do I just plonk it on the sand?, My other home is on a farm 400mt above sea level with no light pollution at all and beautiful clear crisp nights during the colder months but knee high grass and cow and goat turd's everywhere?

Filters and such, Iv'e been reading that the dobs are so good at collecting light that the Moon can become glary through the scope due to too much light. Is this so? Also is it possible to view an eclipse through a dob with the right filters?


Lastly (but by no means the last question I will have) although I have gone for the smaller aperture what will I be able to see in the way of nebulae, galaxy's etc, Iv'e been checking out some of the Pic's people here have been posting (Awsome)and while I realise that most of the colour can not be seen with the naked eye, could I still get some of the detail through a 8", saturns rings and so on? A little colour? I'm sure I can still upgrade if needs be.

This is my first scope, I plan on learning both it and the sky with this one, to see if it still tingles my spine in twelve months time to look back hundreds of millions of years into time will be the test for me, the price tag of this one will be covered when I see the first look on my kids faces the first time they see the moon up close through it. But I would still like to see freaky stuff through it.

Thanks again for all the advice people. Merry Christmas and Happy new year to all
JEFF
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 26-12-2009, 12:29 AM
Zzapped (Steve)
Registered User

Zzapped is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Perth
Posts: 26
Im in exactly the same boat so im subscribing to see the answerts, i used mine for the first time tonight and it was just amazing..the moon was so clear ans large, im still blown away with it
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 26-12-2009, 01:55 AM
mswhin63's Avatar
mswhin63 (Malcolm)
Registered User

mswhin63 is offline
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Para Hills, South Australia
Posts: 3,553
Hi Jeff,

Myself next on my shopping list is an observing chair. I actually purchace new lenses first but in all realism I should have gone for the chair.

Lense need extra careful considering and would time a long time to make the consideration. I based my descision on my future of astronomy. So my lenses where good wide field but not over price as some can be. My new lenses are Baader Hyperion but I intend to do more Astro photography so I didn't spend the money on Ethos, Nagler or Pentax lenses. Even though Baader are not as good as Ethos etc they still a big step up from the standard Plossls.

First though if you want to look after your back get a obs chair.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 26-12-2009, 02:36 AM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
Thanks Malcom, I think I have that one sorted already, adjustable height and a built in stubby/glass holder, a bit like a cat perch but more comfy with adjustable foot settings as well (custom made), a leftover from a mechanic of all places.

I would like some good quality wide field lenses for a great view but I think I am wondering more about zoning in on areas in deep space stuff, something that will balance between, if it exist's.

I dont really have very good grasp on this as yet despite trying to and reading, I guess what I am after is an eyepiece(s) that will allow a wide view of a relatively small object through the scope I am getting, and how to go about it.

I guess I'm basically after the best bang for the buck so to speak, I do appreciate quality tho and would prefer to spend my money once rather than a few times trying to get it right, even if it does cost a bit more.

That a good chair hit's the top of the list tells me I'm in the right spot for advice tho, it really does make sense when you think about it and I'd never really thought about it till your post. Thanks M8
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 31-12-2009, 02:34 AM
southerncross's Avatar
southerncross (Jeff)
Registered User

southerncross is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Cairns
Posts: 25
best collimating tool?

Need some help/opinion on the best tool for collimating my new dob, laser or eyepiece? I'm considering the Cheshire tool as a first choice but would a well calibrated/collimated laser make life easier? My first real scope is on the way(along with the Monsoon as luck would have it) and I also have copy of Vic Menard's New Perspectives on Newtonian Collimation. on the way as well. But I want to know what makes for the best result in the way of collimating tools, one or the other or both?
At the moment I have neither but would like to purchase one or the other or both quite soon, Like tonight.

Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +10. The time is now 07:59 PM.

Powered by vBulletin Version 3.8.7 | Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Advertisement
NexDome Observatories
Advertisement
Testar
Advertisement
Bintel
Advertisement
Limpet Controller
Advertisement
Astronomy and Electronics Centre
Advertisement