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I wanted to reach out to everyone here for some advice. I currently have a Tele Vue Nagler 4 17mm, viewing on a Celestron Nexstar 8SE, and am interested in an EP with a longer focal length. I really like the 82 degree AFOV, so I was immediately eyeballing the Nagler 4 22mm or Nagler 5 31mm. And this is where my problem is... which one do I choose if money isn’t a factor? I have reviewed the specs between the two, but without trying them out, I can’t visualize which would work out the best. Is going 31mm too much of a leap from 17mm?
I was lucky enough to get a 12" Skywatcher Dobsonian (305mm/1500mm) for Christmas. It shipped with a 10mm Plossl and a 25mm Plossl, both 52° AFOV. Finally had a clear enough night to try it out and I absolutely loved it. I researched a bunch over the last year so I knew this was the scope I wanted should someone want to get me a really sweet gift before I grabbed it myself. What I didn't research at the time was accessories and equipment, something I've been doing relentlessly over the past few days.
I'll primarily be viewing in the backyard until I find a great viewing spot (and a good way to safely transport). Light pollution isn't terrible but I haven't fully gauged its impact on seeing fainter objects. I'm not interested in imagery/photography at the moment. Not foreclosing on the idea by any means but everything I'm looking to add is purely for visual gratification at this point. Hoping the experts out there can lead me in the right direction. Here's what I'm trying to figure out:
1. What eyepieces should I pick up?
I've read that, generally speaking, you want 2-3 premium pieces in over to cover low, medium, and high magnification. I'm currently looking at the following "sets": 5mm Nagler, 13mm Ethos, 35mm Panoptic or 6mm Ethos, 13mm Ethos, 21mm Ethos. I'm not overly concerned about price. I recognize that there's going to be a premium associated with a brand like TeleVue and with squeezing out that last drop of performance; however, I don't want to throw away money unnecessarily if I'm not going to see a benefit from pulling out the stops. I'm not beholden to TV by any stretch but everyone says they're the gold standard so I figured I'd look there first. I'm not looking to grab everything at once either. Was thinking of starting with the 13mm Ethos since it would fill the mid-range gap between my 10mm and 25mm.
2. Should I grab a Paracorr?
I've read many comments that go back and forth on this but the consensus seems to be that, while it's not crucial at f/4.9 like it would be with a faster scope, it's something I should probably have in the arsenal if I'm using wide field eyepieces, which the ones I'm contemplating are. I couldn't detect any coma with the two eyepieces I currently have but I suspect I probably wouldn't given the FOV and my beginner status. I also think that once I see it I'm not going to be able to unsee it.
3. Should I pick up a Barlow?
This question assumes I'm not getting a Paracorr. I like the idea of essentially doubling the number of eyepieces I have but I'm not too sure of the ultimate utility/necessity of it.
4. Any other crucial accessories I should have?
I'm looking at a Cheshire collimator for when the time comes. Aside from that, is there anything else I should absolutely have?
5. Finally, any suggestions on transporting?
It goes without saying but this baby is heavy. I don't have a garage, and I'm hesitant to store it in the shed, so what I've been doing is removing the OTA from the base and transporting them separately to the backyard for setup. It's not bad but I can see it getting old after awhile, especially with numerous viewing sessions in a row. After all, I didn't get this scope so it could collect dust; I want to use it as often as the weather lets me. I do plan on replacing the feet with wheels so I can at least roll it, but I'm trying to figure out a good solution to getting it in and out of the house (down 3 small steps) to the backyard without damaging it or breaking my back.
I think that's all I have for now. I appreciate any help you all can provide. I'm just trying to learn as much as I can so I can have a great experience and eventually show my little guy all about the joys of astronomy. Thanks everyone!
After discovering that my Borg 107FL could take the magnification provided by the Ethos 3.7mm with ease, I have been working (or waiting...) for the chance to make a few changes to my "planetary eyepiece" department for 2019.
After a bit of a wait (>4 months), I finally grabbed the chance to get a second hand 4mm DeLite from astrobuysell (I have been looking for one of these since the review by @iPeace).
The recent pre-Christmas TeleVue sale allowed me to bag the rare 3mm DeLite at a discount.
I really liked the Ethos 3.7mm but as it was rendered redundant by my plan, it had to go and luckily it has covered the cost of the two new DeLite's!
[The two new DeLites are pictured with a 5mm DeLite that I picked up second hand last summer.]
The 4mm is wearing a 'Baader 2"-1.25" low profile adapter for Steeltrack' (which I find very good, as I don't like to mess with adapters when wearing gloves!)
Just need some PLANETS now!
The "mustavs" have struck again. I have a 31mm Nagler, and it is superb, but often the sky brightness is such that it requires a little more power. I have a 22mm Nagler and that is fine, but I find the magnification offered by my 27mm Panoptic to be the best compromise, hence I am looking for a reasonably priced 26mm Nagler.
I purchased my 31mm Nagler this year for £350 in preference to a 26mm when I was offered both, but as I thought it could replace both my longer Panoptics I went for the N31 despite it costing a lot more.
The Nagler 26 is an old, and now obsolete, design, but it is still a premium eyepiece, so if you have added a modern ep and don't use your N26 much maybe you would consider passing it on. I have tried some 100 degree eyepieces, but can't get on with them. I am hoping someone with, say, a 21mm Ethos still has an underused N26 in their eyepiece box.
If anyone is thinking of letting theirs go then please let me know.
Thnkyou for looking