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Grumpy Martian

Small grab & go setup that can go on a plane.

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I met my school friend today. He travels abroad frequently. He is interested in a setup that can be used at home in light polluted North London for quick setup. Also to be used when travelling to over countries. I said that a 72mm ed doublet mounted on a sturdy photographic tripod. It would resolve planets and moon. Also nice widefield views. What do other people use? 

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My OTA of choice when travelling is a 66mm ED Doublet because its so tiny. Good for low mag widefield but not so good for high mag due to tiny exit pupils though it's good up to about 75x and OK upto 100x depending on conditions. 

The extra aperture would help with DSO.

 I'm sure others will be along shortly to offer other opinions.

Ade

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102 skymax on a suitable tripod

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I have used my APM 80mm F/6 triplet on a carbon tripod with mini-giro mount. Shown here in tandem with my SolarMax-II 60mm DS

IMAG1016.thumb.jpg.c8cc23421fc509226ce2e0245a18d953.jpg

I am sometimes tempted by a Vixen VMC110L: lighter than my 80mm and a lot more aperture. Not as good for wide-field, however

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I reckon the 72ED is a good choice Martin. I've got the TS version which has a lovely R&P focuser and sliding dewshield so it is very compact. It gives excellent wodefield views, a creditable performance on Jupiter and Saturn, has the benefit of being able to do solar with a wedge and to act as a spotting scope in daytime too.

Whilst I can take my FC100 abroad with me, it requires a fair amount of thought and preparation, the smaller scope is just begging to be taken at a moments notice.

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I use a Tele Vue Ranger 70mm on a photo tripod with a Dwarfstar alt-azimuth mount. The whole lot weighs about 3kg. I have a 3 piece travel eyepiece set which gives me from a 3 degree low power view to 150x. The performance of this little scope has often surprised me :smiley:

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r70dstar02.JPG.c3bfd806e51aefe65a9e80f07f831c75.JPG

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I use a Borg 71 as my travel scope.  It has the advantage of splitting into to smaller pieces - so I can just take the lens in carry on and pack the other pieces in suitcase.  It is also light so works with a lightweight giro mount on a photo tripod.

Helen

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I've recently acquired an Altair Starwave 80ED-R. It's on an skywatcher AZ-GTI mount and the whole setup is light and surprisingly stable. I was looking at jupiter last night at about 160x without even aligning the mount and it was tracking really well. 

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I've just taken a Heritage 130 on a AZGTi to the Atacama desert for fab views of southern DSO's. Both fit in a cabin size bag with tripod in large suitcase in the hold.

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21 hours ago, Grumpy Martian said:

I met my school friend today.

I always tell my wife that the telescope that's just been delivered is for my friend, too.

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Just bought an Astrotech AT66ED for a small and light travel scope that will sit on my Manfrotto geared head. I'm hoping its so small and inconspicuous that my wife won't notice it packed for our camping trips. Also hoping it will make a good scope paired up with the Fujifilm X-A10 for a little imaging too. First light sunday if the forecast holds.

I used to have a WO 66SD on a mini Giro some 10 years ago now and loved that. So hoping the AT 66 will be a direct replacement.   

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38 minutes ago, GlenM said:

Just got this for grab&go. 

 

sharpstar2.jpg

That looks epic :)

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2 minutes ago, russ said:

Just bought an Astrotech AT66ED for a small and light travel scope that will sit on my Manfrotto geared head. I'm hoping its so small and inconspicuous that my wife won't notice it packed for our camping trips. Also hoping it will make a good scope paired up with the Fujifilm X-A10 for a little imaging too. First light sunday if the forecast holds.

I used to have a WO 66SD on a mini Giro some 10 years ago now and loved that. So hoping the AT 66 will be a direct replacement.   

I wondered who went for that one :grin:

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1 minute ago, John said:

I wondered who went for that one :grin:

haha i had to be quick. I missed out on a Revelation ED80 on Saturday morning for £110 delivered....  And also missed out on the setup nonlinear bought a few posts up. I had been watching that Starwave 80ED-R on the GTI all week and then forgot to bid lol :)

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20 minutes ago, russ said:

I used to have a WO 66SD on a mini Giro some 10 years ago now and loved that. So hoping the AT 66 will be a direct replacement.  

I have @CraigT82's old WO ZS66SD and it's my most used setup by far. Gets far more use than the ED100 and ED120 as it's small enough to go pretty much anywhere.

I hope the AT66ED works nicely for you. 

Ade

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52 minutes ago, AdeKing said:

I have @CraigT82's old WO ZS66SD and it's my most used setup by far. Gets far more use than the ED100 and ED120 as it's small enough to go pretty much anywhere.

I hope the AT66ED works nicely for you. 

Ade

I loved my old WO ZS SD66mm, so compact but very nice views.

That Astrotech was a good buy @russ 👍👍

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Among the slightly larger plane-friendly refractors, the TS 90mm F6.7 triplet made by Sharpstar is also interesting. Sliding dew shield, pretty light and compact, and binoviewer friendly. Obviously pricier than the smaller EDs, around £950. But great if you want a true apo with a bit more aperture, flexibility for imaging etc. Sharpstar also produces its own version - carbon fibre tube - sold by 365 in the UK.

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3 hours ago, AdeKing said:

I have @CraigT82's old WO ZS66SD and it's my most used setup by far. Gets far more use than the ED100 and ED120 as it's small enough to go pretty much anywhere.

I hope the AT66ED works nicely for you. 

Ade

Ade, that 66SD was such a great scope. I took a mistep initially and bought the WO 66 petzval when it first came out. I'm sure there is some historic posts on here where I wasn't impressed. No better than a Star travel 80. But the SD was a dream scope. Especially on the mini giro. Just need to re-buy one of those now. 

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2 hours ago, Stu said:

I loved my old WO ZS SD66mm, so compact but very nice views.

That Astrotech was a good buy @russ 👍👍

I hope so Stu. I guess we'll find out tomorrow when I collect it. Or more precisely, Sunday when I use it. I can't wait. 😁

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20 minutes ago, russ said:

I hope so Stu. I guess we'll find out tomorrow when I collect it. Or more precisely, Sunday when I use it. I can't wait. 😁

I was quite tempted myself, even though I don't really need it with my 72mm. They are just so small though, something very appealing about that. Hope you enjoy it.

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8 hours ago, nonlinear said:

I've recently acquired an Altair Starwave 80ED-R. It's on an skywatcher AZ-GTI mount and the whole setup is light and surprisingly stable. I was looking at jupiter last night at about 160x without even aligning the mount and it was tracking really well. 

+1 for this set up. I have the Altair star wave 80ed on a star discovery mount and this goes with me in cabin baggage. I have to put the tripod in the hold but it travels well and I think is a pretty good balance between wide field and high mag.

There are many choices in these apertures and they are all pretty good I think.

steve 

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