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sockgoblin

Heritage 130p on European tour

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hello all
just got back from an extended holiday through France , Italy and Greece. We took a VW van , camped in France and Italy and then stayed in an apartment in Greece.

I took the Heritage 130p flex tube along and as some others have asked about a portable setup I thought I should report back.

The scope was packed in a plastic gardening trug , the OTA wrapped in a towel and laid on the dobs base in the trug ,and then assembled at each location and either stored in the corner of the tent or the apartment. I needed to collimate at each outing as the scope was rattled around over 3000 miles of road, but just a 5 minute job with a Cheshire.

In truth , in Italy and in France the lights on the campsites made viewing not great ,but in Greece the view over the sea was good.

Highlights were , sitting behind the van , to avoid the  lights, at 2pm in the morning  on a French campsite listening to a Dutch guy snoring in the nearby tent and the mossies buzzing but seeing the Whirlpool Galaxy for the first time.

In Italy viewing the Moon , Mars and Saturn over the Umbrian hills. (see Pic below)

In Greece , most of the time we had the Moon above but for a few days we had moonless skies. My wife , myself and son lying on the sunloungers on the beach in the dark while I pointed out the various constellations and then spotting shooting stars . then on the way back to the apartment crossing a particular dark part of the beach and noticing the milky way ( dont see that at home)
When we got back to the apartment ,I set up the scope on the balcony and we scanned across the milky way , I saw a large nebula ( no idea which one, the Mythos was flowing) It was deemed as awesome by my teenage son and his mate.

On another night we introduced the folks in the bar to the ISS spotter app and we all clocked it skimming over the Greek mountains.

Interestingly as Greece is at 39 degrees latitude (home is 53 degrees) I could see the Sagittarius "teapot" over the sea.

A carepoint. I stored the scope , in the setup you can see below, with the light shroud around the trusses , however now I notice that the mirror is filthy. I should have closed it when not in use. I will be washing the mirror when I receive my distilled water

The scope was great and I would highly recommend it to any travellers.

As a separate post I will be asking where to upgrade from the 130p , but I will not be getting rid of this little gem.

Additional note: The Sky and Telescopes Pocket Sky Atlas was very useful but my new all time fave book is Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders by Robert Bruce Thompson and Barbara Fritchman Thompson, in my opinion even better than Turn Left at Orion. Its clear directions and great illustrations lead me to the Whirlpool Galaxy..very recommended.

IMG_20160708_211026.jpg

Edited by sockgoblin
additional note
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Great that you could even share the experience with the locals. Good stuff.

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41 minutes ago, Putaendo Patrick said:

Great report - and a great little telescope!

What eyepieces did you take?

all of them! but I mostly used a Vixen NPL 30mm as a wide view and GSO 16mm and 12mm plossls

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17 minutes ago, LukeSkywatcher said:

Can i assume the step ladder was for kids?.

its my viewing seat.. and to reach stuff in the roofbox......multitasker

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7 minutes ago, sockgoblin said:

its my viewing seat.. and to reach stuff in the roofbox......multitasker

I have a similar one for DIY. I dont do DIY. I get others to do it for me. Nice comfy stool to sit on though as the step on them are pretty deep and very sturdy step ladders in general.

Edited by LukeSkywatcher

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Come to Greece lads! Great skies and NO CLOUDS!. Damn how do you live up there in the UK..? Damn... I need sun, can't live under the clouds all the time...! This must be a great little scope, I'm also considering it as it's very affordable and easy to use!

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Nice post! I've been thinking that one of these could be a nice little travel scope.  Can I ask a quick Q please: would the dob base take repeated assembly/dissembly so as to be able to pack it flat do you think?

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12 hours ago, niallk said:

Nice post! I've been thinking that one of these could be a nice little travel scope.  Can I ask a quick Q please: would the dob base take repeated assembly/disassembly so as to be able to pack it flat do you think?

I have never taken the base apart. As you can see from the pics below the base is attached to the vertical arms by screws underneath. If my Ikea experiences are anything to go by then chipboard screws do not to be unscrewed and rescrewed. I am considering an AstroMaster Tripod for next trip some options are discussed here

 

130base.jpg

130a.jpg

Edited by sockgoblin
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suppose you could rig some L brackets on the top of the base to connect the vertical boards to the base, countersink some screws coming up through the base and then use wing nuts to attach and detach?

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18 minutes ago, sockgoblin said:

suppose you could rig some L brackets on the top of the base to connect the vertical boards to the base, countersink some screws coming up through the base and then use wing nuts to attach and detach?

Great idea thanks!! + I appreciate you taking the time to post the pics - very helpful :thumbsup:

I think it's worth a shot - these scopes seem to me to always get very complimentary reviews.

PS The bottle of wine suits the size comparison with that backdrop far better than the standard tin of beans :):p

Edited by niallk
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