Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

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nigelpbwye
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Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by nigelpbwye »

I'm desperate to support my 10-year-old's fascination with the stars by buying him his first scope for Christmas but it's proving to find anything in stock!

Having done some research, I concluded that the best option for a novice within my price range (£150-200) was a Skywatcher Heritage 130P Dobsonian (https://www.firstlightoptics.com/beginn ... xtube.html). However, like most other scopes these are out of stock everywhere until after Christmas.

The nearest thing I can find that might tick the same boxes (ease of use, powerful enough to see planets) is the Omegon MightyMak 90 Dobsonian (https://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/om ... scope.html). It only has one eye piece and is less powerful than the Heritage.

Does anyone have any suggestions? Would you recommend going for the mightymak or wait till after Christmas for a better buy?

Thanks!!
brian livesey
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by brian livesey »

You might like to consider a Skywatcher Sky Max 90 and a zoom eyepiece to avoid having to have a selection of eyepieces for your son.
Both are available at harrisontelescopes.com .
brian
brian livesey
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by brian livesey »

I've just checked at www.harrisontelescopes.com and the SkyMax 90 is out of stock. Sorry about that.
brian
Brian
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by Brian »

Brian,

the Harrisontelescopes.com link takes me to a web-builder page. Hacked?

edit:

link should be https://www.harrisontelescopes.co.uk/

everything seems to be out of stock anyway
Brian
52.3N 0.6W
Wellingborough UK.

254mm LX90 on Superwedge, WO ZS66SD, Helios 102mm f5 on EQ1, Hunter 11x80, Pentax 10x50
ASI120MC Toucam Pros 740k/840k/900nc mono, Pentax K110D
Ro-Ro roof shed
Brian
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by Brian »

Hi Nigel, welcome!

You are indeed between a rock and a hard place when trying to purchase a decent telescope at the moment. Covid has dried up the stream of imports from the Chinese optical factories which produce much of the equipment used by us amateurs these days.

My main advice is not to be sucked into buying from mail-order or department stores. Invariably their offers will disappoint you immensely. You are best off keeping to known astro-suppliers with a knowledgeable user-base. As you have done, in fact.

Bear in mind that the Omegon Mak telescope will need a sturdy table to use it on, and that the red-dot finder will need you to view through it from a distance behind the eyepiece if it is to work properly. The supplied eyepiece is x40. For planets you would need x100 or a little more (9-10mm eyepiece say) and the images would still be quite small. Training the eye "to see" is a necessary part of learning observational skills. One positive with the little Mak is that the dovetail mounting allows you to move the optical tube to a better (maybe driven) mount in future.

Personally, I would go with the Bresser 6inch "planetary dobsonian) as sold by FLO. It is a good telescope, but outside your budget unfortunately,

Regards,
Brian
52.3N 0.6W
Wellingborough UK.

254mm LX90 on Superwedge, WO ZS66SD, Helios 102mm f5 on EQ1, Hunter 11x80, Pentax 10x50
ASI120MC Toucam Pros 740k/840k/900nc mono, Pentax K110D
Ro-Ro roof shed
brian livesey
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by brian livesey »

Bresser 'scopes get good reviews for quality and price. The main tube side bearings on a 'scope attached to a Dob mounting should be about the same diameter as the primary mirror, to give good stability and smoother movement.
Bressr Dob-mounted 'scopes meet this requirement. My Revelation 20CM Newtonian has side bearings that are less than half the diameter of the mirror. The movement feels "sticky" as a result.
brian
nigelpbwye
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Re: Desperately seeking Christmas gift scope

Post by nigelpbwye »

Thanks so much for all the advice Brian. Much appreciated. I think I'll wait till after Christmas and go for the 6" Bresser when funds allow.
Cheers, Nigel
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