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How to use a non goto scope

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I was at a friends when he showed of his goto scope, too far away from a power source, batteries were flat, so I had to try and nudge it manually, which was useless.

My question concerns going for the non goto route, so that I get more of my budget spent on the optics.

Say I was getting a dobsonian that has no goto, 200 or 300. Are there small vernier type wheels to move it slowly, and slightly? Or do you have to give the whole thing a gigantic shove?


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well I have never used a dob but know you can follow objects by small movements of it, I am sure some members with experience of using one will advise on your question.

good luck with it should you buy one :)

your friend with the Go To would be better off buying a portable power unit that can be charged for observing sessions, batteries are a waste of money to be honest.

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The dob mount (if well tuned) moves very smoothly and easily. You soon get the hang of applying tiny nudges as you are viewing. As Shane says, having eyepieces with a wide field of view helps as well.

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I have no trouble tracking manually with my dob at powers up to about x400. I find a plossl field of view perfectly adequate up to about x200, but prefer wider angle for highest power.

Slow-motion controls were standard on alt-az Newtonians during the 19th century. In modern dobs the motions are generally smooth enough that you don't need any slow motion control. It could be useful at very high power, but in practice you're never likely to want to go above x500. Herschel used powers well above x1000, and his eyepieces gave a small field of view, so for him, slow motion control was essential.

Edited by acey
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