Shame I missed the last meeting...

Discuss practical questions about using equipment,
finding celestial objects etc.
Posts: 15
Joined: 03 Jan 2011, 18:26

Shame I missed the last meeting...

Postby stormin » 15 Nov 2012, 21:44

Unfortunately myself and my son, Sandy, missed last month's meeting and the telescope buying guide session. This is particularly relevant as Sandy's 16th birthday and Christmas are fast approaching and it seems an appropriate time to think about upgrading our 76mm ALDI's purchased OTA :) !! So I'm looking for some advice for our next step on the equipment ladder. This will be the second phase of the "spend 1/3 on mount, 1/3 on OTA and 1/3 on eyepieces" principle as we already have a Skywatcher EQ5 GOTO mount.

This is probably pretty typical but I'd like something that's a bit of an all rounder with say a 70/30 split of astrophotography/visual work. We already have a Philips SPC-900NC webcam and Nikon D3100 with 1.25" adapter so I'd like the scope to be as compatible as possible with these straight out of the box. We'd like to do the usual things; moon, planets and the more obvious DSO's and generally have a good and relatively easy to use system to practice our astrophotography skills and have some fun!

My current thinking is a 6 or 8 inch catadioptric such as a Celestron C6 or C8, Orion OMC140 (isn't that what you have Paul?), Skywatcher Skymax 150 or the like as I think these would be easier to handle, setup, maintain and give good results whilst being "relatively" economic. I stand to be corrected though! It would obviously need to work with our mount too. If I can get a good 2nd hand one (do you know someone who is selling :)?) that would be fine, but prepared to buy new.

So any advice welcome and hopefully we'll see you at this month's meeting to discuss it further or tell you what we got!

Thanks in anticipation,

Posts: 364
Joined: 12 Jun 2008, 11:39

Re: Shame I missed the last meeting...

Postby Cosmic » 19 Nov 2012, 10:23

Hi Paul
If you wish to do Astrophotography the Maksutov that Paul has is not suitable due to the long focal length F15 (I think). A SCT would be more suitable at F10 with a focal reducer you could get it down to around F6.3 In layman's terms this means the shorter the F ratio the faster the scope is and the more light it gathers more efficiently thereby reducing exposure times. You say you have an EQ5 go to mount so that will suffice for a 6 inch SCT. Buy in haste repent at leisure so better to wait until you speak to me at the next meeting.

Meade 8inch  SCT. Observatory mounted on an HEQ5 Pro using EQMOD Canon 1000D modified DSLR,200mm Dobsonian, 200mm Celestron C8, 15x70 Astro Binoculars. 2x Mintron ccd cameras, lots of other stuff.

Posts: 285
Joined: 15 Nov 2006, 22:17

Re: Shame I missed the last meeting...

Postby pbholmes » 19 Nov 2012, 23:14

Hi Paul N,

I do indeed have an OMC140, and it's great for visual observing, nice and portable.
I haven't done much imaging with it, but if you want to do deep sky stuff,
then (as Geoff says) something with a faster f number and maybe also a larger
aperture would be better.

I'll be bringing my scope along next Tuesday, so you can have a look at it and
compare its pros and cons with some of the others.

Paul H.

Posts: 15
Joined: 03 Jan 2011, 18:26

Re: Shame I missed the last meeting...

Postby stormin » 20 Nov 2012, 00:04

Thanks guys. Yes, I'll do some more research and speak to you next week. I need to check what the mount can comfortably handle weight wise and go from there. Would like to get to an 8" cat if possible and from what I've read f10 seems a good compromise on speed which, as you say, could be reduced further.

Paul N

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