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My Explorer 130RA Unboxing and First Light

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OK, so after waiting so very Patiently (NOT!) for my scope to get here it has finally arrived.

I have to say everything was very well packaged and seemed in great condition. Now I was in for quite a suprise. Considering my Scope was supposed to come with a standard finder and plain EQ2 Mount with no drive etc I was delighted to find a red dot finder & a single axis drive too!! Not the cheap economy one but the one that retails for about £70 on green witch astronomy. What an awesome bonus. I was actually going to order both the drive and finder seperately when I placed the order for my scope so Im so happy about this bargain :)

Speaking of which, only cost me £135 Including delivery!

Anyways, onto first light. Well, I had to set up in the garden for now. I took it out. Did all the balancing (Hope I did it right) and then tried to calibrate the finder, which for some reason I found very difficult despite following what seems like easy procedures lol. Trouble is its rather overcast and not great viewing conditions. Plus loads of light polloution from the nearby town center! However, after playing around and getting used to the RA & DEC for a few hours I finally managed to get my beady little eyes on Saturn.

WOW! I wasnt expecting to see as much as I did. I used a 25mm first and was really impressed with actually making out the rings very clearly. I then popped the 10mm ep in and was even happier. It took a while for my eyes to adjust and pick out some of the details but Im sure they were there.

I swear I could make out some cloudy areas on the planets surface. Although there was some wavering (heatwaves?) distorting the image I was still highly impressed..and bottom line extatic about my new purchase. I just cant wait for some clearer skies :(

Anyways Im a very happy bunny indeed and just wanted to share

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My first light was Jupiter, back in 2005 with my 150mm Dob (which I sadly had to sell 2 yrs later :) ) But I'll never forget it, looking up at that bright spot in the sky...then looking through the eyepiece and seeing that spot become a definable disc with the storm patterns and the moons...priceless...

On the bright side...my birthday in June...and might well pick up a 200mm Dob and renew my friendship with Jupiter!

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