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Hi Mike. I joined today aswell. I'll leave the scope advice to the others as i'm a complete novice. My research lead me to the Celestron Astromaster 130EQ, so far i've been able to find the stars i was looking for without even doing the pre-reqs like polar alignment (granted one of the stars i was looking for was polaris but hey) so it cant be that hard to use :)

There is a sticky in the help forum about choosing a scope, i'd check that out.

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hi and welcome to sgl. when i joined not that long ago i was asked a few questions like budget,what do you want to see planets,galaxys e.t.c. your viewing location i.e. apartment,house with a garden or have you got to travel to use it.also were would you store it as in the size of the scope.

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Hello newbie, May I suggest a small fast refractor first,like a 80mm f-5(Orion makes a great one) rich-field telescope. It's pretty cheap and it will get you started. And when you want to boost your light gathering ability(and you will!) a nice 8in(200mm) Dobsonian will show you thousands of objects for not much more than the little refractor! I hope that helps a little. I'm sure others have excellent advise for you as well. Always look up!...JMR

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