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rockystar

SkyWatcher Infinity 76P

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Just wondering if one has had any experience of one of these: https://www.harrisontelescopes.co.uk/acatalog/SkyWatcher_Infinity_76P_Childrens_Telescope.html#SID=9

It's my son's birthday in a couple of months and he keeps asking to look through my telescope. As he's only 4 (or going to be), I'm not keen to let him loose on my expensive kit, but I do want to encourage him. I'm aware of not getting cheap toy store scopes, and the plus point for this scope that I can see are:

  • It's made by SkyWatcher
  • It's sold by a dedicated telescope provider
  • It has a parabolic mirror.
  • It should be easy for him to just swing it around the sky - I know binoculars always get touted for this, but even I can't hold my 8x42s steady.
  • It's not too expensive, so if it gets abused or abandoned I won't be too put out
  • It's a table top, so no worries about a wobbly (or too tall) tripod and I can stick it on the outside table so he can use it whilst sat next to me.
  • Not that i'm normally swayed by advertising, but it is advertised as "Not Your Average Toy Telescope!!"

 

Things I'm aware of (and reasons I'm not worried about them)

  • Probably not a great eyepiece (and it is erecting) - I've got stock skywatcher eyepieces from my skyliner that he can use.
  • Only 3" - So I'm aware of what will be visible (and what wont) with this size aperture
  • No finder - He'll be with me when he uses it, so I'll be able to help him point it at something suitably bright and interesting.
  • Aperture fever - I can't imagine his sessions will last more than 15/20 minutes at a time so I think we'll be ok for targets for a while (especially since he'll be in bed for 40% of the nights in the uk, and 70% of the rest will be covered in cloud). And if he gets into it and enjoys using it, i'll happily upgrade him to something bigger and better in a year or two (or upgrade myself to something bigger and better and he can have mine :icon_biggrin: )

Any thoughts much appreciated.

 

Lee

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I bought this scope for my four year old daughter. She loves it. I don't...

Pros:

You can put stickers on it.

You can see the moon quite well.

Cheap, portable, no cooling, attractive shape.

Light plastic eyepiece bounces when dropped.

Cons:

Children knock it  out of position every time they touch it.

No real focuser. The supplied eyepiece has curved slots for simple helical focus, perfectly adequate. And you can push the helical focus plastic pins out and so theoretically any 1.25 inch eyepiece will fit in the tube, maybe with an extension, but practically I have never found a good combination. I think the supplied x30 erecting eyepiece is probably the best for the job.

Tube is curved so fitting a red dot finder is a bit tricky - and I did need to fit a finder.

76mm f/4 reflector, 300mm focal length, I can't think of anything its really useful for.

The moon is so bright you would ideally need a filter, which doesn't fit on the eyepiece.

 

It's given us and friends a lot of fun. The sight of 4 little ones standing on a table, heads down looking at/through a little blue spaceship/penguin is one I will never forget. But for actually looking through, and something that would grow with the child, I'd probably choose the 130P if I did it again.

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+1 for the SW Heritage, I've used a couple and thought them to be pretty good value.  :icon_biggrin:

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Not with a bargepole....I've seen friends buy 2 of these. They don't come properly collimated and they don't stay that way with little hands. Virtually unpointable. You're much better off with a ST80 and you can use it for a finder / guidescope after the kids have got bored with it....

RL

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Thanks for all the info guys, I think you've helped me decide to look elsewhere - maybe investigate the heritage a bit further.

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2 minutes ago, rl said:

Not with a bargepole....I've seen friends buy 2 of these. They don't come properly collimated and they don't stay that way with little hands. Virtually unpointable. You're much better off with a ST80 and you can use it for a finder / guidescope after the kids have got bored with it....

RL

I've owned the very slightly larger 100p Dob and that was very pointable/usuable, arrived collimated and stayed that way for the whole time I had it which very much surprised me at f4!...good mirror too. I'm not saying I don't believe you, just I'm surprised that the slightly smaller model is so different. They're only 39 quid, so I might pick one up to see for myself, might be a bit of fun I can have with my 4 year old :) 

I second the ST80 if the OP can go up quite a bit in budget? They are £100 odd for an OTA and need monting off course, worth the money though. All comes back to getting what you pay for I guess.

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Asking a slightly different question but I'm wondering how much damage your son could do to your dob? (under supervision) I wouldn't trust my kids to not drop an expensive ep if I had any but always help them have a look when they're interested.

Edited by Joseki

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@Chris Lock I don't mind paying a bit more, but as you say it also needs a mount, and I want to make sure it's something he'll stick with first.

@joseki I agree, with supervision he'll be fine, but it's always nice to have your own when your are a kid. Something smaller is quicker and easier to grab for a look before bedtime. And he can swing this around himself. The main concern about damage is him falling on it while stood on the chair to reach the eyepiece.

I think I'm going to get him the heritage this time and see how he gets on.

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