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PFMarconi

1st Telescope - ADVICE please

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I'm wanting to buy my son a telescope for his 18th birthday but I have no idea what to look for.

Ideally I would spend £100 - 150. With that budget I'm limited but that's all I can afford.

Is it possible to get a half decent piece of equipment for that amount.

Many thanks for any comments.

Paul

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Hi Marconi - welcome to the group :D

One of my relatives just got a SkyWatcher 130P in your budget range. It's very nice as a starter scope and should keep you hapilly occupied for several years. They're only £132 (or £162 with RA motor) and should come with a red dot finder, 2 eye peices and a barlow lens.

You'll get good views of the moon and solar system objects, and it is well capable of many deep sky objects. SkyWatcher are a good make - my first scope was almost identical (except it was the 150P) they are easily upgraded and a good price. See this link:

Reflectors

(5th and 6th scope down the page)

Hope that helps :D

Edited by brantuk

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Newtonian reflecting telescopes offer the best value for money and this one is well within your budget.

Reflectors - Skywatcher Explorer 130

The eyepieces combined with the barlow lens will give a good selection of magnifications and the package will give great views of the moon, planets and deep sky objects.

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I would recommend you give First Light Optics a call, speak to Steve and talk through your budget and requirements. They sometimes have clearance items or special introductory offers where you could get a bargin.

He's a good guy and very knowledgable.

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Thanks to everyone for your advice. You've made things much clearer and I now have something to go on.

Thanks again

Paul

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Just bought a starter scope for my little sister and here's a review:

http://stargazerslounge.com/equipment-reviews/105086-skywatcher-evostar-90-az3.html#post1442922

Personally I would prefer a 6" dobsonian, as suggested by astrokat. However a refractor is much easier to carry and doesn't require so much maintenance (no need to collimate). Although you could do the maintenance yourself.

The small refractor is more suited for a kid, in my opinion, it also looks a bit more impressive, although in reality the dob is more comfortable to use and will show more of the night sky, as the greater aperture allows an increase in light gathering of 277% over this refractor.

Edited by pvaz

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6" Newtonians are a dream start to a hobby. I built mine years back and loved it. Don't be scared of collimation, it is not as big a hassle as people may think. I did not have laser collimators at my disposal, but got good results (with a little patience) and once collimated rarely had to go through it again.

Cheers

Michael

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