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Andy Cole

Should I buy a Skywatcher Heritage 130p DOB?

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Hi all

I'm a newbie here but not totally new to astronomy. I've had a telescope since I was a teenager (over 30 years!) and only ever had 1 telescope - a Tasco 40x40mm reflector. I expect members my age are familiar with it - thin and white with a thin metal tripod and a push and pull focuser.  It's still functional at more than 30 years old although the thread on the eyepiece is worn so the eyepiece falls off regularly! I've only ever used it to look at the moon, Jupiter and Saturn and that's always been good enough for me.  Now I have been thinking of getting a new scope. I have a very limited budget and so I am wondering whether I will get any significant improvements on what I can see.

My earliest memories of the Tasco from childhood were that I could see the rings of Saturn as a line across the circle of the planet.  Having rekindled my interest in the last few years, I have started to use it again, and nowadays, when Saturn is visible, I can clearly see the rings 'as a ring' and the gap between the planet and the rings, which I don't remember seeing as a kid. 

Vieing Jupiter I can usually see about 4 moons.

I've heard that the Skywatcher Heritage 130P Dobsonian is a good 'budget' telescope, and great for casual use, which is what appeals to me most.  I don't want a telescope with complicated setup or one that takes up a lot of space.  TheSkywatcher seems to fit the bill, and it also fits my very limited budget.

What I am most interested to find out is whill I get an improved view of the things I have already experienced?  I have read some reviews that describe what you can see with this scope and it sounds like it's pretty much what I can already see. And it's maximum 65x magnification doesn't seem like much better than the Tasco's 40x. But will the wider aperture make a bigger difference than the magnification?

I'm also interested to know if I could use this scope for basic astrophotography - I have numerous cameras - phone cameras, compacts and DSLR's (photohraphy is my main hobby).  I'm not talking about hour long exposures of dark sky objects, just what can be seen easily through this scope.

I'd love to know what people's opinions are, especially if you own or have used this scope.  I'm also interested to hear recommendations for other scopes, but please remember I have limited budget and space.  I know that an 8" or more is better and I would love one but they are just too expensive and too large for me.

Cheers

Andy

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Hi Andy,

The Heritage 130P is a very capable little scope, optically very good and will be a significant improvement over your 40mm refractor.

I'm not sure where a x65 limit comes from, perhaps the supplied eyepieces, but with some optional additions the scope is more than capable of x130 or more.

I bought one from Astroboot just as the tube for about £50 and use it on a tripod with a mount which puts it at a better height. I believe there was one on there just recently but it may have gone.

https://www.astroboot.co.uk/AstroBoot

The weak point of the scope is the plastic helical focuser. It actually performs very well with smaller eyepieces and can be improved alot just with a few wraps of plumbing PTFE tape.

I have split quite close doubles with mine, the Double Double is quite doable, and the extra aperture will show you many more stars in open clusters. Under a dark sky I think you will be pleasantly surprised by its capabilities.

If this is your limit from a budget point of view then I would say go for it! Perhaps plan to get one or two higher quality eyepieces to give higher powers which you could either pick up off ABS, maybe some orthos or try the BST Starguider range which are very good.

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Hello Andy and welcome to SGL.

I have the Heritage 130P and I use it for outreach work plus at home for quick grab and go.

The mag of 65X is not the limit - in fact I often use mag up to 150X. Had good views the other other night of Jupiter + GRS and Saturn + Cassini division. At outreach events I often show DSOs (Clusters, Globs and Galaxies)

As Stu stated above the weakest part is the focuser but that can be improved with PTFE tape.

I have made many modifications to the scope including, a few weeks ago, an additional dovetail to use it on a particular alt/az mount.

The attached photo shows the addition of a 9x50 finder, plus a neoprene shroud.

Heritage in travel mode.jpg

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I’m happy fully to verify what’s already been said, but would like to add - the chairman of my local astronomy club has Heritage 130 Dob and he’s been into astronomy for decades.

A very capable and useful scope for many great years of enjoyable no hassle astronomy 👍

Ed.

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2 hours ago, Andy Cole said:

Hi all

I'm a newbie here but not totally new to astronomy. I've had a telescope since I was a teenager (over 30 years!) and only ever had 1 telescope - a Tasco 40x40mm reflector. I expect members my age are familiar with it - thin and white with a thin metal tripod and a push and pull focuser.  It's still functional at more than 30 years old although the thread on the eyepiece is worn so the eyepiece falls off regularly! I've only ever used it to look at the moon, Jupiter and Saturn and that's always been good enough for me.  Now I have been thinking of getting a new scope. I have a very limited budget and so I am wondering whether I will get any significant improvements on what I can see.

My earliest memories of the Tasco from childhood were that I could see the rings of Saturn as a line across the circle of the planet.  Having rekindled my interest in the last few years, I have started to use it again, and nowadays, when Saturn is visible, I can clearly see the rings 'as a ring' and the gap between the planet and the rings, which I don't remember seeing as a kid. 

Vieing Jupiter I can usually see about 4 moons.

I've heard that the Skywatcher Heritage 130P Dobsonian is a good 'budget' telescope, and great for casual use, which is what appeals to me most.  I don't want a telescope with complicated setup or one that takes up a lot of space.  TheSkywatcher seems to fit the bill, and it also fits my very limited budget.

What I am most interested to find out is whill I get an improved view of the things I have already experienced?  I have read some reviews that describe what you can see with this scope and it sounds like it's pretty much what I can already see. And it's maximum 65x magnification doesn't seem like much better than the Tasco's 40x. But will the wider aperture make a bigger difference than the magnification?

I'm also interested to know if I could use this scope for basic astrophotography - I have numerous cameras - phone cameras, compacts and DSLR's (photohraphy is my main hobby).  I'm not talking about hour long exposures of dark sky objects, just what can be seen easily through this scope.

I'd love to know what people's opinions are, especially if you own or have used this scope.  I'm also interested to hear recommendations for other scopes, but please remember I have limited budget and space.  I know that an 8" or more is better and I would love one but they are just too expensive and too large for me.

Cheers

Andy

Its an ideal starting scope on a budget. Easy to move and store. 

You will also need a Newtonian colimation (laser / Cheshire) tool and I would suggest a 2 x Barlow lens for some higher magnifications and you are ready to go. 

In terms of astro photography, I am not sure its the ideal scope with the weight of the camera on the helical focuser. Dont expect any Dobsonian to do DSO imaging for that matter, but you could dabble in a little solar system imaging. 

Adam  

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27 minutes ago, Adam J said:

In terms of astro photography, I am not sure its the ideal scope with the weight of the camera on the helical focuser. Dont expect any Dobsonian to do DSO imaging for that matter, but you could dabble in a little solar system imaging. 

Yes, I forgot that part. The focuser will likely not be up to holding anything like a DSLR, would cope with a smaller one like the GPCam though so as said, solar system imaging, or a bit of smartphone imaging would be possible but that's about the limit I should think.

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I have thst scope, with it i also got

2x Celestron barlow around 20€

9mm svbony eyepiece 25$

6mm svbony eyepiece  25$

 

Two nights ago weather was perfect and I observed moon jupiter and saturn at 216x magnification,(6mm eyepiece and barlow) I think that is upper limit. Fine little scope. I love it

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