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TS 130mm F/7 Refractor Second Light

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Finally got a second light on my TS 130 F/7 APO last night. I've been waiting for 4 weeks for a decent night!  We had very clear skies 2 nights ago but I had to work late and couldn't get out to observe. So yesterday was one of my days off and the skies were clear again. Setup the scope on my iEQ45 Pro mount about 9:45pm PDT. Saturn and Mars were both up about 30° to 40° above the horizon; so I did all my observing on these two planets. Seeing was very good for this area!! I also got to test my 4 new Delos eyepieces, 3.5mm, 6mm, 10mm, 17.3mm. The scope preformed excellently and the seeing was good enough to use the 3.5mm eyepiece, 260X. Mars was a decent size in the 3.5mm eyepiece. I could see Syrtis Major and Tyrrhenum on the planet. They were faint at times but when seeing settled down they showed very well. There was no false color/smearing color that I could see around the planet!

I also spent about 1 hour observing Saturn. It's always a joy for me to observe Saturn!! The rings showed very well and the Cassini division was very prominent and easy to see. I could see a dark gray band about 2/3rds of the way up the planet. I could also see a couple of more faint color bands on Saturn. Saturn was more stable and seeing was better when I observed it. I also used the 3.5mm Delos on Saturn to great effect. Here again there was no false color anywhere on the planet. The detail and resolution of the scope was excellent. While the planets didn't snap into focus as quickly as in my ES102APO, it was still very easy to get them in focus. Everything worked without a hitch!!!

Ok, on to the eyepieces!. I used all four of the Delos eyepieces (3.5mm-6mm-10mm-17.3mm) and the ES 4.7, 6.7mm, and 24mm (68°). I also used a Starguider 5mm eyepiece. The Delos were excellent in the TS 130mm scope. They gave me great views and I was able to see the dark details on Mars and the dark band and a couple of faint colored bands on Saturn. I compared the ES 4.7mm to the 3.5mm Delos and also to my 5mm Starguider eyepiece. The 3.5mm picked up the dark and faint bands on Saturn that the ES 4.7mm didn't see. The surprise of the night was the Starguider 5mm eyepiece. The Delos and the ES 4.7 were basically a tie on Mars and Saturn, with the exception of the 4.7 not seeing the dark band on Saturn. They were within 5% to 10% of each other in performance. The Starguider was nearly as good as both of the others. I was within 15% or less in performance of the other two eyepieces!! The Starguider did see the dark detail on Mars and just barely saw the dark belt on Saturn. The Paradigm/Starguider eyepieces are very underrated eyepieces!

The TS 130mm was well worth the money and performance is excellent for the price. While it's not in the same class as Tak, Tec, or AP it performs extremely well IMO. I'm very happy with it!!:icon_biggrin::icon_biggrin:

Edited by gunfighter48
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Great report. Scope and EPs sound very nice indeed. I have an 8mm  and a 14mm Delos and they are extremely good.  F/7 is not extremely fast, so I am not too surprised a BST gives top-end EPs a serious run for their money. My MV 24mm 68 deg is a superb EP in my F/6 triplet, but comes a bit unstuck at the edges in an F/4.1 Dob. The TV EPs I have tried stay sharp, even in such a fast scope. 

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I went out the day after my observing session to the local astronomy shop and bought the 14mm Delos. Just like potato chips, you can't have just 1,2,3,4!!!!!!!:icon_biggrin: So now I have 5 Delos and I thought I was all done with buying any more eyepieces, rightttttttt !

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