Posted 07 April 2013 - 03:36 PM
Also reading through these various posts I'm wondering if I've made the right choice. No spare parts sold by Meade?? Poor customer service?? I've got two month wait, its not to soon to cancel the order.
Posted 07 April 2013 - 03:49 PM
It will also depend greatly on your knowledge of the sky... the goto can be spot on sometimes, others not so much so the better you know the sky to start with the better off you'll be.
Meade offer a sky assurance program which if your worried about things there I would take advantage of for sure and it would not hurt for you to just call them and explain your concerns and see if they can put your mind at ease, Meade makes some good products at good prices so the scope is probably a good enough deal, but to protect it... I would call and look in their SA program for sure.
Posted 07 April 2013 - 03:53 PM
First let me open saying I have received nothing but excellent service from Meade. First rate in my opinion.
The spare parts debate - I guess it all depends. I my 35 or so years dealing with Meade I really have not had a need for replacement parts. With all the variation in the telescope lines over time, keeping spare parts becomes a nightmare and very expensive. If they have the parts - yes they can sell it to you. If it is a major service item, you need to send the item back to them for repair, especially if it is under warranty.
All my Meade products (10" LX200 and ETX-125) have worked very well over the years. So well, I have an 14" LX850 coming in soon.
What goodies do I get for my LX200/LX850? I got the 2" Diagonal with 24mm UWA eyepiece. This is a wonderful kit. Since then I purchased the 30mm UWA (a beast!). I also purchased the Meade 5000 series HD-60 ep with case. I also got from Astronomics a solar filter for fun Sunspot viewing. Other nice goodies to consider - piggyback mount, dew filter for moist climates, and carrying case.
I would not cancel the order unless you want to get the LX600 or LX850. However the 10" LX200-ACF is a very good telescope.
Posted 07 April 2013 - 04:31 PM
Posted 07 April 2013 - 05:11 PM
Posted 07 April 2013 - 05:35 PM
Posted 07 April 2013 - 09:51 PM
a dew shield is almost mandatory. SCT correctors are horrendous for picking up dew.
Posted 07 April 2013 - 09:56 PM
Posted 08 April 2013 - 04:41 AM
Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:09 AM
I would stay away from heated if it is not really necessary. They consume a lot of power so you need a bigger battery or your viewing session is cut short anyway. I made my test dew shield out of a stiff plastic that is still flexible, a kids roll up snow sled if you have ever seen one of those. That was ten years ago, and I am still using my test version. I have only had two nights where I wished I had a heater.
Posted 08 April 2013 - 10:48 AM
Posted 08 April 2013 - 08:59 PM
go out to star parties and see what other people have, this will help with picking eyepieces, and you can see/try other things.
then wait a little while and consider what you want to do, if you are going to keep doing visual, then get more toys for visual, if you are going to do imaging, than invest in that (although imaging will open up a whole new set of expenses, its a money pit). imaging vs visual is like a fork in the road, most people spend 80% or more of their time on one or the other.
if you decide to stick with visual, then consider a binoviewer, more eyepieces, and some filters, and counterweight system as needed
id you want to do astrophotography, the list of things to get is long
Posted 09 April 2013 - 03:10 AM
Where do you get the mounting brackets for the 14" LX850 "finder scope"? lol
Posted 10 April 2013 - 12:05 AM
i use the telrad alot more than the finder scope, that was one of the first things i purchased, $40 well spent.
there are probably all kinds of astronomy clubs and star parties in your area so just hunt around, you dont need your own scope to go.
stellarium is free, there are other free programs, why wait for the program that comes with the scope, sounds like you are already itching to get started.
Posted 10 April 2013 - 01:58 AM
Posted 10 April 2013 - 03:13 AM
peterson also makes the "eye-opener". This is a nice little upgrade to the visual back that lets more light in. Not a must have but a nice to have, especially with 2" diagonal and EPs
If the scope is back heavy or if you think you will keep getting more accessories, heavier EPs, or you will get into astrophotography, than you need a flexible setup (skip on the peterson balance weight). Meade makes a balance kit that you can look into. I have/prefer the losmandy kit, (you will need DM10 and DVDWS)
If you are going to be traveling with the scope, will you have access to a power outlet? if not, you may need some kind of a battery pack. Some people use portable car battery starters (get at least 18 amp hour), some people build their own pack with a marine or deep cycle battery, Kendrick also has a nice but expensive unit (I got lucky and found a used kendrick battery pack on craiglist). Celestron has the Powertank.
BTW a good way to save $ is to get some of this stuff used.
Anyway as I tell you all these things to get, be mindful that if you have to break down and setup your scope each time you want to use it and carry all these items with you, each little thing adds time and effort to the process and you need to carry more things with you. The first few times its fun, but when its cold outside and your wife is telling you to hurry up, it can get annoying. Most night I enjoy the setup, some nights I try to minimize what I take with me.
As far as EPs, Meade EPs are OK, but there are better EPs. Look through the eyepiece forums, post questions, read reviews, lots of information out there. If budget is not an issue, look into Televue EPs or Explore Scientific EPs or other well rated/reviewed EPS. There are many to choose from, these are just the popular higher end EPs. It sort of fun to build your own set over time. Ive been gradually adding to my Televue set over time, filling in the gaps. A barlow lens might also be useful too. I have the TV 2x Powermate, comes in handy sometimes. EPs generally hold their value (especially if kept in mint condition). People buy/sell/trade them like baseball cards sometimes. See the CN classifieds.
Glad to hear that you are getting into the hobby with your wife. Always good to share the experience with someone close. Luckily my wife is a willing participant, and she lets me spend $ on gear.
Posted 10 April 2013 - 03:51 AM
I've had bad luck with used, so I generaly avoid it till I'm more expearianced, but I can see where EP's might not suffer like some used items do.
I'm going to look through you links now thank you and all for the help.
Posted 10 April 2013 - 09:35 AM
and worth every cent you paid for it!
If you live in the City a Wide band LPR filter will help.
Eyepieces are #1. You don't have to spend a fortune.
My RKE eyepieces from Edmund are fantastic. AND cheap.
I have had eyepieces that cost 1/2 as much as my SCOPE!
You can get a decent low power 70 degree eyepiece for not a lot of money for DSO.
I quickly realized the money was better spent elswhere.
You can make a dew shield yourself, dont get caught up in the B.S. of spending a ton of money on items!
I bought a new Arcturus Binocular Viewer, it is the best $119.00 shipped I have ever spent. My views are as sharp as a friends WO's
If you look in the Classifieds any used Binoviewers are sold "within hours!". You gain another 30% smaller detail
when useing 2 eyes on Planetary compaired to one.
Color filters are nice if you like Planetary viewing.
Posted 11 April 2013 - 06:24 AM
Posted 11 April 2013 - 10:36 AM
You could buy a used set of BV's and easily resell them if you dont like them without loosening money.
Posted 11 April 2013 - 11:10 PM
Teleview makes diopters for their EP's . this is another $100.00 add on for their already expensive EP's. it is a lens that comes in whatever power you need to correct for your astig. but there is a limit to what power they run up (or down) to. also I believe these only fit TV EP's. they don't play well with others.
Posted 17 April 2013 - 01:48 AM
Posted 22 April 2013 - 03:17 AM
Posted 22 April 2013 - 03:28 PM
My main eyepieces are a 7mm Nagler, a 16mm Nagler and a 55mm Plossl. I use a 55mm Plossl to find the object. Then I switch to the Naglers.
My other Plossls feel like the discarded mops on the Swiffer commercials.
Posted 26 April 2013 - 10:38 PM
Go big or go home
I have a lx200 10" classic and my brother has the ad12
I must say that's two fine scopes.
My suggestions for the lx200
Bobs knobs are a must.i think a lx200 without bobs knobs should be illegal
Dew sheild is a must
40mm 2" ep
Nothing brings the lx to life like a 2" low power ep
I have a meade 8-24mm zoom ep and its pretty much my goto ep
Strong back,I move mine alot