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Zauriel

Is hiring a good idea before buying

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Zauriel    2

Hi, if anyone viewing this would know I'm extremely new to this hobby as my previous posts would suggest, whilst stumbling around google trying to find a localish shop that sells scopes/dobs  ( I want some hands on before I purchase ) I found this link http://www.darkskytelescopehire.co.uk/course/8-skywatcher-200mm-dobsonian-telescope-2/ they're an hour away from me and after doing a little research after some direction from the SGL members I think this or something similar is what I'm looking for. At £50 for a weeks hire plus extra add ons included I see this as a win win for me, if it doesn't work out then yeah im £50 out of pocket but surely better that than spend £250-£300 only to get the same result. Can anyone see any drawbacks or is this something I should jump into head first for my first ever attempt.

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Peter Drew    5,429

If there is no nearby astronomical society where you could probably try a similar telescope for free then it's not a bad idea. Bear in mind that one week in the UK doesn't guarantee much viewing, keep an eye on the forecast before hiring.  :icon_biggrin:

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John    17,533

Your nearest dealer is First Light Optics who are at Exeter and a very nice bunch of people :icon_biggrin:

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/

I think you need to phone / e.mail ahead if you want to visit to see something.

At Bristol Astro Society we have regular star parties and scope clinics so those might be worth considering ?:

http://www.bristolastrosoc.org.uk/www/

 

 

 

 

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Zauriel    2
1 hour ago, John said:

Your nearest dealer is First Light Optics who are at Exeter and a very nice bunch of people :icon_biggrin:

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/

I think you need to phone / e.mail ahead if you want to visit to see something.

At Bristol Astro Society we have regular star parties and scope clinics so those might be worth considering ?:

http://www.bristolastrosoc.org.uk/www/

 

 

 

 

I emailed FLO this morning asking if I could go and see them for ' a play ' unfortunately Steve replied saying they're a warehouse and every things boxed up ready to be shipped out and they don't have a showroom facility that I could go to, with regards to the local clubs I've had a look around at several on the internet but don't really know how to approach them being a complete novice at this. I have taken a look at your Bristol astro society web page and am impressed by it shame its an hour away but I can live with it do you have any events that would benefit someone like me who has little knowledge.

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Uplooker    1,294

Best to pick the nearest AS to you and turn up, you should be made to feel more than welcome.

Explain your situation and they should be more than willing to help

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IanL    785

I'd agree. The full membership fee for Bristol AS seems to be £40 for the year, and doubt any other local society is going to be much more. You'd save 10 quid, not have to worry about the weather cooperating with your hire period and likely get to look through a variety of different scopes belonging to the society or other members before you buy. You'd also end up getting more out of your first scope since you'd have access to practical help and assistance.

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ronin    3,718

Check out clubs within reach: http://www.astronomyclubs.co.uk/

Chard is well south in Somerset so it looks like Sidmouth may be the closest to you, not sure of options in Dorset. Is there anything at Yeovil?

Many have a "hire/loan" arrangement for scopes BUT for members only and then often established members.

Search out ones that have apublic or open evening, or ask if you can attend a suitable club noight and have a look around at the various scopes - if polite many of the people will I expect let you have a look through theirs and answer questions. I know one where if you stand still then they drag you off (screaming or otherwise) to look through a scope.

FLO are basically a warehouse now, think they tried a bit of a showroom at some time but I guess the demand for it was minimal, which I can understand, and the space had better use. As in storing equipment.

Will ask what type of scope is it that you visualise yourself using - ignoring peoples recommendations. Someone somewhere said that that is the item you should get. Also I suggest you considering a very much general purpose item, preferably of mediocre size. In effect just something that you will get hold of and get out and use.

Tales of 500x just are not true, tales of seeing objects too faint for hubble are not true, galaxies glowing in white dazzling stars and vibrant red star forming regions are not true, seeing the Martians dismantle the assorted rovers we have sent there are not true. For magnification you can to my mind and thinking stop at 150x, say a medium slow f/8 or f/10 100mm scope.

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r3i    444
19 hours ago, Zauriel said:

.... with regards to the local clubs I've had a look around at several on the internet but don't really know how to approach them being a complete novice at this. I have taken a look at your Bristol astro society web page and am impressed by it shame its an hour away but I can live with it do you have any events that would benefit someone like me who has little knowledge.

Most astro societies arrange public events and expect visitors who come along to have a range of knowledge, from zero upwards so don't be concerned if you are a novice, you'll probably find that you're actually quite knowledgeable compared to many. There's nothing worse than arranging an event and nobody turns up so I'm sure you'd be made most welcome wherever you go. It will be definitely worth go along to try out a scope or two before parting with your hard earned money.

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Geoff Lister    107
On ‎13‎/‎11‎/‎2017 at 12:43, John said:

At Bristol Astro Society we have regular star parties and scope clinics so those might be worth considering ?:

http://www.bristolastrosoc.org.uk/www/

The Bristol AS public viewing evenings (most Saturdays) are worth going to. I went a couple of months ago, and met John, and several other keen astronomers with a selection of telescopes. The observing site is in Failand, on the Chard side of Bristol, along a path from the B3129 Weston Road. If you use Google Maps satellite view, there is a marker for B&W Equine Vets, and the observatory is about 150m NE of the marker. Probably about 55 miles / 1h 20 mins. (mostly M5) from Chard.

Geoff

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AdeKing    167
On 13/11/2017 at 16:55, ronin said:

Chard is well south in Somerset so it looks like Sidmouth may be the closest to you, not sure of options in Dorset. Is there anything at Yeovil?

There is a group at Crewkerne (http://www.cadas.net). I found a webpage for a group at Yeovil but the events programme was about 5 years out of date so I'm not sure whether it's still active.

In Dorset I only know of a group in Weymouth and another in Wimborne, both of which are probably a bit far for you to comfortably get to and from for an evening.

Ade

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cletrac1922    61

Hi Zauriel

Welcome from Land Downunder

As mentioned, you can hire a scope for a week, and entire week can be clouded out

Agree with comments about going along to your local astronomy club

Members only too happy what they have, and you can observe through their scopes

Then comes the big question

You intend to just view planets and other deep sky objects, or venture into AP down the track

The latter with then dictate which type of scope and mount you eventually purchase

Happy Viewing

John

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Delasaurus    41

Have a think about subscribing to a professional observatory. It's not as expensive as you think. Wish I had done it before buying all my kit as the amount of clear skies we get in UK is a lottery.

Here's a link to one of the sites but there are many others if you Google for remote telescopes/observatories. You buy time on the scope, enter the co-ordinates and you get your results sent in an email.

 

http://www.itelescope.net/subscription-plans

 

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Zauriel    2
11 hours ago, AdeKing said:

There is a group at Crewkerne (http://www.cadas.net). I found a webpage for a group at Yeovil but the events programme was about 5 years out of date so I'm not sure whether it's still active.

In Dorset I only know of a group in Weymouth and another in Wimborne, both of which are probably a bit far for you to comfortably get to and from for an evening.

Ade

The group in Crewkerne have a meeting this evening, hopefully I can attend but my wife has decided we need to attend a friends birthday.

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JOC    1,309

When I bought my telescope the thing it took me longest to get to grips with was the size and movability, possible storage needs of them.  There is a great picture in one of my threads that someone posted for me which shows various Dob sizes against a 6 foot man which is very useful in this respect - I'll see if I can dig it out.  You might also do worse that look at some of theads with the titles variously around 'show me your setup in action' and that might also be useful in seeing what is possible and how big things are.  FWIW I did my research online - mainly on SGL and then bought what I decided directly from FLO without ever seeing it or another scope 'in the flesh'.

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JOC    1,309

The thread with that diagram in here if you scroll down you will see it

 

 

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