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LX200 12" good buy?

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#1 slarsson

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 03:56 PM

A guy locally has a nice looking LX200 12" on tripod and compuetrised mount for sale. Have only seen the photos but it looks in good condition. Is $1200 Canadian a reasonable asking price?
I've been a Celestron (C8) man up to now!

#2 Christopher Erickson

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 04:11 PM

LX200 Classic or LX200GPS?

#3 slarsson

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 04:21 PM

Ad says:
"This is the most popular research grade telescope on earth. Normally used exclusively by universities and enthusiasts, the lx200 is well over $5000 retail.

Includes:
12" uhtc schmidt cassegrain optical tube
LX200 fork mount with computer controller
Giant field tripod
Ac adapter and optional car plug
Meade lenses and filters
Solar filter
8x50 Viewfinder
Visual back
90 degree prism
Ota cover
Original packaging and boxes
Operational Manual"

No mention of GPS, Christopher

#4 junomike

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 04:26 PM

But the price I see In the Ad is $2200 (which is about right).

Mike

#5 clmbr256

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 11:29 PM

LX200's can be good buys. But please consider this:

The optical tube and fork mount are one piece and results in one heavy item. About 90lbs for the 12 inch model. This is a lot of weight to transport and to lift onto the tripod, especially if installing onto a wedge.

The automation during alignment (if a GPS/R/ACF model) is only fully active when in alt-az mode (True North, Levelling).

The Meade Super Wedge for use in Eq mode adds 26lbs to your collection of gear, and its not a particularly good wedge, it needs modifications to work effectively. The alternative wedges from Mitty and Millburn are good, but even heavier.

The balance of LX200's is just ok with no extra gear. With extra gear you will need counterweights, adding even more weight to your collection of gear.

If you want to do astrophotography, its not the best option, because you will need a wedge, which can be a pain to align, and then the tracking on the LX200's is not particularly good (even with PEC). I use an autoguider, and it works hard to adjust the tracking of my LX200.

If you have an observatory and its going to be permanently mounted then most, if not all, of the concerns go away.

If you want portability and astrophotography capability then a German Equatorial Mount is likely what you should get. It can be heavy, but not as heavy as an LX200, it breaks down into lighter components. And you can pick the optical tube or tubes that you want.

I see more LX200 OTA's on GEM's such as the Orion Atlas or Skywatcher EQ6 than together with the original mount.

Sometimes the deals just too good to pass up though...

As the seller why its for sale, and its likely one of the following:

* I have a hernia, can't lift that thing anymore
* Its not portable enough so gets little use
* Its a bit of a pain to use for Astrophotography

I bought my LX200 six years ago, and while I like it, I would not repeat the purchase. I would go GEM with a collection of OTA's.

One advantage the LX200 has is that in alt-az mode for visual observing its a rock solid platform. Minimal vibration..

But in alt-az mode looking at anything near zenith is tough. The eyepiece is hard to access between the forks (focus too) and the slew accuracy pointed straight up is not the best.

#6 thesubwaypusher

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 01:33 AM

"As the seller why its for sale, and its likely one of the following:

* I have a hernia, can't lift that thing anymore
* Its not portable enough so gets little use
* Its a bit of a pain to use for Astrophotography

I bought my LX200 six years ago, and while I like it, I would not repeat the purchase. I would go GEM with a collection of OTA's."

So true. Go lift before you buy!

#7 redlinedb16a

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 12:56 PM

I bought a 10" classic for $1600 u.s.

The mirrors needed recoating and I have sense disassembled the entire scope and gearboxes

All in all still a killer scope,glad I got it

#8 Spacetravelerx

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 01:17 PM

I am convinced the 10" LX200 is the sweet spot of SCTs. Large enough for a range of observing, but still small enough to be set up by one person and reasonable to transport. I use a superwedge and have no problem with polar alignment or transportation. I can't speak for 12" or bigger, but 10" seems optimal.

I guess if you can get a really good price for the 12" and don't mind the exercise it would be worth looking at.

BTW - I have a fork and I am now playing with a GEM. My immediate take: if you do lots of visual or lets say 50/50 split with ap and visual, I would stick with the fork.

GEM is great for AP and larger telescopes, 12" and above, (you can break into smaller chunks). GEM also allows you to vary what OTA you use, for most folks though one OTA is sufficient. GEM for visual? I have decided it sucks big time. I know people do use it for this purpose too, but all the weird angles? The LX850 I have is great for video and ap (excellent in fact!), but for visual it is not as fun. The OTA is WONDERFUL for visual, but viewing angles and the wide sweeping motion of the mount not as fun. Still, for a 12" or 14" GEM may be the better way to go due to overall mass.

If I ever upgraded from my 10" LX200 class I would go with a 10" LX600. Of course that is a whole different price category than a used 12" LX200. But less hernias! Heck, less hernias with a 12" LX600!

#9 GUNER

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:39 PM

I have the 12" GPS & love it. No way it's 90 lbs. Maybe 75 if that. I can set it up no problem & I'm not in good shape.

#10 GUNER

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:45 PM

Just found the Meade manual:
"Net telescope weight ....73 lbs"
"Net tripod weight........50 lbs."
Not an easy lift but very doable. I'm a couch potato & have never had troble with setting it up. Even when I put it on the wedge.

#11 thesubwaypusher

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 07:03 PM

I bought a 10" classic for $1600 u.s.

The mirrors needed recoating and I have sense disassembled the entire scope and gearboxes

All in all still a killer scope,glad I got it


Great attitude! :bow:

#12 thesubwaypusher

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 07:08 PM

I am convinced the 10" LX200 is the sweet spot of SCTs. Large enough for a range of observing, but still small enough to be set up by one person and reasonable to transport. I use a superwedge and have no problem with polar alignment or transportation. I can't speak for 12" or bigger, but 10" seems optimal.

I guess if you can get a really good price for the 12" and don't mind the exercise it would be worth looking at.

BTW - I have a fork and I am now playing with a GEM. My immediate take: if you do lots of visual or lets say 50/50 split with ap and visual, I would stick with the fork.

GEM is great for AP and larger telescopes, 12" and above, (you can break into smaller chunks). GEM also allows you to vary what OTA you use, for most folks though one OTA is sufficient. GEM for visual? I have decided it sucks big time. I know people do use it for this purpose too, but all the weird angles? The LX850 I have is great for video and ap (excellent in fact!), but for visual it is not as fun. The OTA is WONDERFUL for visual, but viewing angles and the wide sweeping motion of the mount not as fun. Still, for a 12" or 14" GEM may be the better way to go due to overall mass.

If I ever upgraded from my 10" LX200 class I would go with a 10" LX600. Of course that is a whole different price category than a used 12" LX200. But less hernias! Heck, less hernias with a 12" LX600!


Yes, the 10" is truly the sweet spot in the LX200 line, and it is NEVER a good idea to upgrade to the 12" if one is portable because of possible injury, and because there is very little to gain as far as performance and the dreaded Eddy currents.

If you have an observatory however, the bigger, the better!

#13 thesubwaypusher

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 07:09 PM

I have the 12" GPS & love it. No way it's 90 lbs. Maybe 75 if that. I can set it up no problem & I'm not in good shape.


I agree. It's not 90. 73 sounds perfect.

#14 David D.

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Posted 19 September 2013 - 08:45 PM

I have the 12". Lifting technique is the key. Once you get it right its a piece of cake.

#15 Qwickdraw

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Posted 20 September 2013 - 06:03 AM

I have both the 10" and 12".
The 12" is definitely less convenient to setup but if you are in moderate shape without back issues it is not a problem. However, I put the 12" on Wheeley Bars and am now much more satisfied and motivated to observe with it. I will say if you are considering a 12" to verify that image shift is not excessive prior to purchasing.

#16 kimball

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 12:21 AM

If weight is a concern, and you want to port it about, then for sure get Peterson's handles. Otherwise, I have been using my 12 inch classic for 10 years and find it comfortable. You will want to get a good OAG if you plan a lot of photography, although I still use the piggyback guiding method. I mount an Explore ED80 triplet on top, balance in 2 dimensions, and have pretty good stars ... whether it is a good buy will depend on the true condition...

#17 Markigno

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 06:27 AM

Hello everyone, I have the 12" and I have no problem, alone (but I'm very strong, 200 lbs x 1.86 cm of high), to lift the telescope on a tripod, or even on the wedge. But I think the best compromise is 10". The reasons are simple:
10" is lighter, and closes better between the forks than a 12". This makes it much more compact for transport.
The 10 "and 12" have the exact same fork. This results in 2 things in favor of the 10 ". A slight margin of extra measure between OTA and base of the fork. Polar mode there is a lighter weight on the same fork, so makes the 10" most optimal for photography with wedge.

Marco

#18 P26

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 06:44 PM

It seems that in spite of numerous responses there never was clarification on the Steph's intent. (Camera or visual, fixed or portable, etc.?) But the original question was only if this is a reasonable asking price. For a fully functional GPS or ACF the answer is absolutely yes. For the 12" Classic, maybe, but I guess it depends.

#19 jrcrilly

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 10:01 PM

If the UHTC claim is true it's a GPS model. It isn't true, though (no mention of GPS or microfocuser). Sellers of Classics very frequently look at the "Ultra High Contrast" label on the corrector ring (that label has NOTHING to do with coatings) and decide to falsely claim it as UHTC (Hey, it's only one letter off, right? Why be honest? Someone will pay more!). Sort of like offering a watch with a Roladex label and hoping nobody notices.






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