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  1. Great review here from Holger Merlitz. http://www.holgermerlitz.de/nikon_wx/nikon_wx2.html
  2. You may like to read Ed Tings review. https://www.scopereviews.com/page1ar.html If you can get hold of one then I doubt you will be disappointed. It will certainly be easy to sell it on if you don't like it.
  3. It is a tough call to sell a TSA 102 in pursuit of a lighter FC-100. I can understand the desire for a lighter option. I have owned a TSA102 since 2008 and it has never failed to impress me when the conditions are right. I have no doubt the FC-100 would also be a very satisfying scope in use. I use the TSA on a Vixen GPD2 mount. I also have an FC-76DC since 2014 which goes with a Vixen Porta mount. That is my lightweight grab and go option. If I didn't already have the TSA102 then the FC-100 would be my choice. In the meantime I wait patiently for Takahashi to announce a new FC-125!
  4. I guess the zcf refers to "z" for the light path through the prisms and "cf" for centre focus.
  5. The Takahashi collection. Mewlon 180C, TSA 102S, FC 76DC.
  6. There is a good review with a lot of information on the history of the Habicht 8x30 here. http://www.greatestbinoculars.com/allpages/reviews/swarovski/swarohabicht8x30w/swarohabicht8x30w.html
  7. The Habicht 8x30 is a classic binocular made to very high standards. It shows beautiful sharp stars and is a pleasure to use for astronomy. It is limited by its aperture and I much prefer a good 10x50. I mostly use the Habicht in the daytime.
  8. Some of my favorites; The Book Nobody Read by Owen Gingrich. Fascinating insight into Copernicus and his famous publication and the history of the original editions. Starlight Nights by Leslie C. Peltier. Autobiography of a famous amateur Variable Star observer. The Great Melbourne Telescope by Richard Gillespie. At one time the second largest telescope in the world. Clyde Tombaugh by David H. Levy. Biography of the discoverer of Pluto. The Nobleman and his Housedog by Kitty Ferguson. Wonderful account of the life of Tycho Brahe, previously mentioned by Putaendo Patrick above. Alvan Clark and Sons, Artists in Optics. The history of the great American refractor makers along with a listing of their telescopes and lenses. Epic Moon by William P. Sheehan and Thomas A. Dobbins. In depth history of the telescopic exploration and mapping of the moon. The History of the Telescope by Henry C. King. This classic work still makes great reading.
  9. The Habicht 8x30 is an outstanding binocular with a great reputation. It has been in production for many decades and many subtle improvements have been made over the years. Though it still has the classic feel and charm of a vintage bino. I bought mine new about 3 years ago. It is not my first choice for astronomy as I prefer a 10x50 or 15x60, however it does give beautiful sharp stars and is surprisingly satisfying to use if you have realistic expectations. I would also recommend the Nikon 8x30EII. It is similar with a wider field of view, though perhaps not quite as robust as the Swarovski. Check out this website; http://www.greatestbinoculars.com/
  10. This particular scope is very light for it's length and is balanced as shown in the photo with a 2" GSO diagonal and 40mm Reverse Kellner eyepiece. It is ok on the Vixen GP mount when there is no wind. The long tube can catch the breeze. It is a nice scope for solar observing with an appropriate filter.
  11. The plywood is thin, only 3 or 4mm in thickness. Cooldown is not an issue at all. The lenses are achromatic doublets of small size so not really much thermal mass.
  12. This one is a light-weight 90mm f16.7 (90/1500) using an Antares Vixen spec lens.
  13. Thank you all for the nice comments. There is no reason you can't use this type of telescope anywhere in the world. I would not leave it outside when not in use but I wouldn't do that with a non-wooden scope either. They can handle dew and moisture in the air just like any other material. The wood is varnished or painted just like a small boat. Here is a link to a Cloudy Nights thread describing a 5" f12 built to this design; https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/325327-5-f12-istar-refractor-project/#entry4171500
  14. This picture is by request for Chris. The green one is a 6" f5 Jaegers lens in metal tube with GSO focuser. The wooden one is a D&G 6" f15 lens in a thin ply octagonal tube with AP focuser. Both piers are made from plywood with jarrah veneer. Andy Perth Australia
  15. Make no mistake a 6" f15 refractor is a large unwieldy thing to manage particularly if you have to mount and dismount each time you use it. If you can make it as light as reasonable and you don't mind the physical handling of it then it can be a very satisfying telescope in use. My current pier is 165mm OD steel and is embedded in concrete block 900mm cubed. The alt az mount is simple and solid but does require very careful balancing. This type of telescope is wonderful for deep sky as well as solar system objects. The high contrast and flat coma free field makes the most of the aperture. You can use simple eyepieces without issue. For sure a 6" apo will be even better but not by much. There is a great feeling of nostalgia when using a long old fashioned scope like this. It is not for everyone but there is a lot of fun to be had. If you do not have the luxury of a fixed mounting in an observatory then I recommend you make the ota as light and easy to manage as you can. I've managed to keep mine under 30 lbs including finder, diagonal, tube rings and 24" dovetail plate. Even so, it is an effort to lift above shoulder height to lock it into the 16" saddle. A Berry mount has the advantage of being simpler to mount and dismount. The scope is stored in a large box in the shed when not in use. I have to carry it about 15 metres from the shed to the pier each way.
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