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Hi, another newbie here


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OK first post and I am desperately avoiding asking the question 'what should I buy?' but it's definitely 'the elephant in the room'.

I thought I would get a telescope when I retired over 5 years ago but the light pollution here in Salisbury is awful, the Cathedral even has searchlights lighting up the sky :) so I decided against it but last year at a motorhome rally in the countryside I saw what could be achieved with a modest scope away from most light.

As we spent 100 days away last year that gives me plenty of scope (sorry) for observation.

So I've joined this forum and have read some guides and am now looking for a scope. I thought a 5" reflector on a motorised EQ mount. I think I should allocate a budget of £500 to include all the bits and bobs as well inc starchart software for my macbook.

Does all that sound realistic for a beginner?

Edited by Chatham
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hello....welcome. I guess it also depends what you "may" want to do with it in the future....I bouught a Dob first, and ever since Ive had a hankering for Astrophotography, so I guess I probably got it wrong...

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Hi, welcome along to SGL.

That last recommendation (an 8" dobsonian) would definitely be worth you checking out. You'll get a lot for your money there.

I havent yet shelled out for a scope myself but time and time again, people here recommend these dobs scopes as a first investment.


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Hi Chatham and welcome to the forum.

£500 is a good amount to get you going. Dobsonians represent the best value for money of all the scopes because all the money goes into the size of the mirror, rather than being shared with the cost of a mount or electronic toys. Before buying, please contact you local astro club/observing group to see when they are organising their next public viewing session. You can then pick the size OR type of scope that best meets your aspirations and needs. Will also give the chance to talk to those running the scopes about set up times, mobility of the scopes, eyepieces etc (take a note pad, as a lot can be forgotten in the dark:D)

Clear skies


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Hi Chatham and welcome to SGL :)

All good advice above - I'd spend 1/2 to 2/3 of your budget on the scope/mount/tripod and save the rest for essential accessories.

Join a local club, get "Stellarium", and when you have a few choices and want to know strengths/weaknesses of each scope - ask away in the beginners help section and someone will be along to help you soon :(

Edited by brantuk
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Thanks to all who have replied and to all of the rest of you whose threads I have read over the past few weeks.

Went to Astrofest yesterday and bought SKYMAX-127 AUTO SupaTrak™ AUTO 127mm (5") f/1500 MOTORISED MAKSUTOV-CASSEGRAIN AUTO-TRACKING TELESCOPE

Yes I know I should have gone to a star party first or bought a light bucket but I've been havering for about 5 years so its time I got on and did some star gazing :)

Its about the biggest rig that I can afford permanent space for in my small motorhome.

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