Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

stargazine_ep29_banner.thumb.jpg.da7f3b163f7bd35187cb558b0346baf6.jpg

Recommended Posts

Hello Everybody,

I can't get away from the idea that I want a manual EQ mount for my scope, which I haven't bought yet, which will be used for visual astronomy (I did like the thought of AP - but as I've never looked through a scope I'm kind of trying to limit my expectations :grin:)

I've really enjoyed researching stuff over the last few months, and reading these forums over the last few days, and can't wait to have a go - but a non MD EQ is for me (sorry dob mob) - I want to learn how to set it up and track if I can. The thought of finding it appeals more than the view (I have the 100 greatest Hubble views on my iPad!!)

My past history (which if you ask my my wife is littered with 5 minute hobbies) tells me that I have to work at it - if it comes too easy I'll lose interest - & I'm happy to start with the easier stuff. I can spend upto £500 max, any ideas?

Cheers, Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The advice will depend on your scope. With that budget you are just about into basic HEQ5 territory (or EQ5 motorised with goto) for a new mount. You need to consider that undriven mounts are confined to the smaller models and that it can cost quite a bit more to eventually upgrade than to buy a motorised mount in the first place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a manual only scope then the Skywatcher 200P on an EQ5 would take some beating - and only £415 from FLO (usual disclaimer). It may be a bit big but the 200P is about as close to an all round scope there is. It has enough aparture for decent views of DSO's and enough focal length for the Sun (with the correct filters), Moon and planets. With the change you could get a couple of decent eyepieces and maybe a Telrad finder (a most useful device!).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another vote for the 200p, best bang for your bucks.

Your budget would go further on the second hand market.

For the same money you could pick up a S/H EQ5 and say a Skywatcher Equinox Pro 80.

This would be good for visual and AP later but would not give you the same experience as the 200p.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i would not recommend a newt on an EQ for visual, a dob would be far superior and you would still have to learn the sky with it

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aha, the big dob - can't tell you why I just don't fancy one!! Maybe later. I've read enough threads to realise one scope isn't enough anyway :laugh:

The sw80's interesting - how would this compare, and would you both agree this might be a better choice to start with?

Cheers - Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

150P on HEQ5 Synscan. Second hand and you are laughing. Good for a dabble in AP too. Good luck

Cheers

Jamie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some contrary opinions here.

I have used 8" & 10" newts on EQ5 without problem for visual.

The SW200P on EQ5 is a good combination visual and (motorised) on the limit, but usable, as a starter for AP to a minute or two.

Don't restrict yourself to the new package pricing. You will probably want to try out different scopes in the not too distant future.

Keeping the scope and mount as separates gives you the flexibility. Used gets you more for your £££.

Buy the biggest most sturdy mount that your wallet will stand. It hurts only once.

BUT>>>

Remember that it will hurt your back every time used if it is too big.

If you weigh 7 stone and have to carry it down a flight of stairs.....etc. The mount will not get used.

Try to have a hold/lift of a mount or two in a shop or at a club.

EQ1 to EQ6 look very similar on the computer screen, but are very different in real size and weight.

If you bought an SW200P, you could always make your own dob base if you are handy with wood.

When you do get the scope and mount, wait before buying a finder or other accessories.

Eyepieces and finders are very much a personal choice.

I happen to like RA finders and EPs with long eye relief. I sold a telrad, preferring the Rigel small finder.

But that is me. Others here have different preferences.

No easy answers, sorry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to everyone for their tuppence worth, I will take it on board - I understand it's a personal choice, but one that's hard to make without any experience!

I kind of expected the sw200, hoped for the omni 150 (it looks nice!) plus maybe one from left field that I had missed (made me look at the pro80 :evil: ). Does anyone have experience of the omni, good or bad, and how will it compare to the 200?

Are there any other manual outfits around this level, or is that about it?

Clear skies...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a good look at the second hand market. I once purchased a second hand 200P dob and an HEQ5 Pro together for £500 total - both around a year old and in excellent working order and condition. You can save a lot of money with a keen eye and a little negotiation. :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In visual use small refractors are pretty limiting. If you get bored easily then read that twice!

Olly

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lol. Fair point well made :grin:

Thanks for all your advice - I'll take it on board & keep my eyes open. I cant see a purchase until this winter, but I'll let you know when I've seen an 'm'!!

Cheers - Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

+1 for the SW200p eq5, I personally find using a dob a bit like dancing with a fat lady in wellies but each to their own :evil:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i would not recommend a newt on an EQ for visual, a dob would be far superior and you would still have to learn the sky with it

+1

Been there and done that. A Newt on an EQ mount = PITA. The EP ends up in some contortionist positions. Either get a Dob (great choice) or a refractor and an HEQ5 mount (great mount choice again) if you have an eye to imaging. I never liked the idea of Dobs and thought them somewhat "retro". Until I got one. They are wonderful.

I am afraid there is no "one scope fits all needs" principle in astronomy. Its not unusual to find imaging and visual enthusiasts to have three or four scopes. I have three.... :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's amazing how experienced opinions vary...

There seems to be a fairly even split between the 200p on an eq, and the big dob. Having used neither I'll try to see, or better still play with a few before I buy - that's as clear as it's gonna get me thinks

Clear skies - Tim :smiley:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a relative newbie who has two working scopes in two locations and a third scope to be rescued if I can. If your enthusiasm is really likely to last but five minutes, then don't get a manual EQ mount! Maybe a fully aligned HEQ-5 with Synscan or computer GoTo overcomes the pointing problems I'm having with my manual mount, but in my experience so far the Dob has been many times more satisfying per 5 or 50 minutes of use!

Last night I tried to look at M81, in the northern sky and visible without so much light pollution as we suffer on the southern side of the house. I lined up the EQ3-2 fairly well with Polaris by looking through the empty hole where the Polar scope would mount, and then tried to point the scope at M81. Have a look on Stellarium or a Star Atlas to see where it is in the sky - two of the stars in the Plough point to it and it is about the same distance from the nearest of these as this star is from the other star. I checked with binoculars and felt that I could see a smudge with averted vision so I turned to the scope. I tried several attempts and orientations of the scope using a red dot finder and a 9x50 (straight through) finderscope but the EQ mechanical movement constraints just wouldn't let me point at it. After quite a struggle I was tempted to re-orientate the tripod, re-position the scope tube, or fiddle with the altitude bolts on the mount, but didn't want to lose the RA tracking which is surely the big advantage of an EQ over an Dob. I never did get to the stage of having to slacken the scope rings to place the eyepiece in a reasonable position to view through!

This is just one anecdote but this was not the first struggle I've had with the EQ mount. On the limited number of clear nights we seem to be blessed with, you may find frustration with the mount overcomes all your stored up patience and good intentions!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since your resigned to getting multiple scopes anyway, you could always look out for a used C8...it's not a Dob and will be more than happy on an EQ5. Then get a 4" or so refractor for the wide field stuff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bear with me. It's the goto thing - the button pressing thing - that I think will 'try' my enthusiasm. It's the instant gratification that will be my undoing! In my mind if I press m81 and the scope takes me to it with disappointing results, I've learnt nothing. Remember my budget is limited

Take the m81. I see a real achievement in your looking it up, finding it with bins, and then having a go at hunting it down with your scope. Even though you didn't see it, you can still take some positives away from your session. And ultimately it's this that will hold my interest...

What I now don't understand is why you couldn't get your scope there or thereabouts? Because then I'd really be in trouble :rolleyes:. And would it really be easier to find with a dob?

Clear skies

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry for leaving you confused Tim, I was trying to imply that indeed it would have been easier with a Dob. Pointing a Dob is pretty intuitive. However the barriers to pointing a scope on an EQ mount are: 1 - the RA and Dec axes need adjustment simultaneously, 2 - the slow motion controls and the clutch levers move with the mount so don't come to hand easily in the dark, 3 - to get the eyepiece into a good position for comfortable observing will often require slackening off the scope tube rings and rotating the scope, and 4 - there may be issues of scope/counterweight balance shifting and also possible fouling of the tripod legs.

I'm not trying to suggest that you can't learn how to overcome these potential barriers, and that you may not find the challenge fun. I'm just saying that there's already plenty to challenge us newbies such as as struggling to interpret what we're seeing in an inverted view in the eyepiece! Since you've said clearly that you are initially interested in visual observing, a Dob is quick to set up, intuitive to point, and you get more aperture for your money since the mount part of the package is cheap.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ooh, that makes an awful lot of sense. If I were to be swayed by just one argument - that would be it!!

Thanks Avocette, and to everyone, for your advice. At least now I know enough to keep an open mind :rolleyes:

Clear skies...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

and swayed I was

Just bought a Meade LB8" on impulse. Sorry Nightfisher, I take it all back. For half my budget I got a secondhand LB, a case full of Plossl's and filters, a 2" 32mm wide angle ep, a collimator, and a shroud

Yes, it was the one on eBay - and now I know why I was the only bidder - but I have a scope, and I've just taken it outside, and I've just come back in, and I've found stuff (Vega and Arctaurus) and it's brilliant. Lol

Now I have a new wish list. Has anyone seen those pimp my scope sites, because everything on it needs changing...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.