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HGSkinner
member


Reged: 11/28/12

Loc: WI
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Mike vp]
      #5544170 - 11/28/12 04:19 PM

I have been looking at the moon, stars, and planets with my young kids for about a year. Initially with just the naked eye, then the cheap binoculars I had on the shelf, and then a Galileoscope we built during a local astronomy event. My wife surprised us last week by bringing home the Celestron 102GT from Costco (although some hints may have been dropped). For a scope that I can setup quickly and share with my kids, it is fantastic. I will pick up a couple of nicer eyepieces, maybe a 90 degree diagonal, and maybe a recharagble battery pack.

My amateur impressions from two nights of use. Is it shaky? Yes, especially if the legs are extended fully. Things are much more stable with the tripod legs only extended about 6". This puts the eyepiece (in the 45 degree diagonal) at eye level for sitting in a chair, or on the ground, depending on how close we are to the zenith.

For $200 and a no-questions-asked one-year return policy, this was an easy scope to buy.

Edited by HGSkinner (11/28/12 05:26 PM)


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Ripper
newbie


Reged: 11/24/12

Loc: SW Pa
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Mike vp]
      #5544316 - 11/28/12 06:02 PM

Hello to everyone.
I just wanted to say thank you to all who posted in this thread. I did not own a telescope till I read this thread over and over again. I have always dreamed of owning my own scope and actually SEE something. I do have a very good spotting scope and made due with it for years, but never saw what I really wanted to experience. I have always watched the skies and thought, one day I will get a good telescope.

After rereading this thread, I went to Costco Sunday afternoon and bought it. Set it up and had an outstanding 3 hours in the cold. I observed Jupiter the entire time. I was so darn excited I couldn't stand it. I actually SAW Jupiter, it's moons, and 2 bands with the 25mm eyepiece. I could not believe it.

So thanks to all for your help. I am hooked.
Paul


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Locoman
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/09/09

Loc: Abilene, Kansas
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Ripper]
      #5544369 - 11/28/12 06:39 PM

Glad to here you are enjoying your new scope. I sure like my 102gt.

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Meadeball
sage


Reged: 10/22/12

Loc: Midlothian, Virginia
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Locoman]
      #5544486 - 11/28/12 08:18 PM

Geez, lookie at this. You actually can get into the hobby for less than $500. I hope all the young people lurking on CN read this thread before turning away; the other threads in the beginners forums have everyone believing you have to spend at least $500 to get started in this hobby.

Enjoy the scopes guys! Thirteen months into ownership, mine gives me smiles (1) at night when I observe, and (2) in the daytime when I do my banking.

Meade

Edited by Meadeball (11/28/12 08:19 PM)


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Meadeball
sage


Reged: 10/22/12

Loc: Midlothian, Virginia
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Ripper]
      #5544491 - 11/28/12 08:22 PM

Quote:

I observed Jupiter the entire time. I was so darn excited I couldn't stand it.




Wait 'till you get your first look at SATURN!

Just think, Jupiter and his moons, Saturn and his rings, and countless other objects, have been up there, patiently waiting your entire lifetime for this moment. Such images can -- and do -- bring tears to grown men's eyes, and childlike giddiness is a frequent symptom displayed by adult newcomers to this hobby. Enjoy every minute of it!

And just think, every time you show one of these objects to a neighbor, friend, or even a complete stranger at a star party, you get to relive the moment all over again! It gets addictive. You've been warned.

Meade

Edited by Meadeball (11/28/12 08:29 PM)


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Astrosetz
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/05/03

Loc: Wisconsin
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Meadeball]
      #5548678 - 12/01/12 12:09 PM

I've just created a design for adjustable wooden replacement legs for the Nexstar 102GT. Part of this design is an accessory tray/spreader that is quick to attach and detach while contributing to the rigidity of the system. The goal is a highly-functional unit that can be made from common and inexpensive materials with a minimum amount of effort. I'm building the prototype this weekend, and once things are done I'll post the results

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svrider1000
super member
*****

Reged: 06/28/12

Loc: Sylmar, California
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Astrosetz]
      #5548705 - 12/01/12 12:25 PM

Quote:

I've just created a design for adjustable wooden replacement legs for the Nexstar 102GT. Part of this design is an accessory tray/spreader that is quick to attach and detach while contributing to the rigidity of the system. The goal is a highly-functional unit that can be made from common and inexpensive materials with a minimum amount of effort. I'm building the prototype this weekend, and once things are done I'll post the results




Awesome. I look forward to reading your post.

Thanks


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Astrosetz
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/05/03

Loc: Wisconsin
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: svrider1000]
      #5548858 - 12/01/12 02:04 PM

I've posted some preliminary details on my blog regarding the Nexstar 102GT tripod leg replacement project at http://astrosetz.wordpress.com

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Meadeball
sage


Reged: 10/22/12

Loc: Midlothian, Virginia
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Astrosetz]
      #5548898 - 12/01/12 02:32 PM

Cool! I'll keep looking there.

And -- geesh,I remember that Celestron C6 ad! (But I think I remember the, um, "presenter" more than the "presentee" ...)

Meade


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Locoman
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/09/09

Loc: Abilene, Kansas
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Astrosetz]
      #5548967 - 12/01/12 03:25 PM

If all it takes is an Electric Drill and a Jigsaw as you posted on your blog then I think I can handle building it. I look forward to it!!!!!

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Astrosetz
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/05/03

Loc: Wisconsin
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Locoman]
      #5549296 - 12/01/12 07:31 PM

An electric drill and jigsaw are all the power tools I have, so they'll have have to suffice! Ok, I do have a Roto-Zip I used when we did some work on the basement, but most people don't have one of those so I'm not going to use it for this project.

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BoriSpider
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/10/04

Loc: S.W.FLA
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Astrosetz]
      #5550168 - 12/02/12 11:25 AM

Astrosetz I too will be watching your blog for tri-pod goodness
I might even try it out for my cg4 and c4-r. tnx.


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newtoskies
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 07/15/12

Loc: SE Ma.
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: BoriSpider]
      #5550213 - 12/02/12 11:51 AM

I've been checking the Costco's in my area and none have this scope.
BTW, love the DIY tripod. Will also follow.


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Meadeball
sage


Reged: 10/22/12

Loc: Midlothian, Virginia
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: newtoskies]
      #5550647 - 12/02/12 04:38 PM

Make sure you call the store or pay them a visit. It is *not* on the website, ever. (Even if you don't see it at the store, still check up front. The last time I was at my store, there wasn't a display model, and it was hard to see the stack of boxes in and amongst the other boxes around it containing Casio keyboards and other large objects.

Meade


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HGSkinner
member


Reged: 11/28/12

Loc: WI
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Meadeball]
      #5551265 - 12/02/12 11:22 PM

Just came in from looking at Jupiter with a crick in my neck. Any recommendations for a 90 degree diagonal for this scope?

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Astrosetz
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/05/03

Loc: Wisconsin
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: HGSkinner]
      #5551379 - 12/03/12 01:47 AM Attachment (59 downloads)

I was able to make what I'm now calling the "Everyone Tripod" in a few hours this afternoon. I have to admit a good chunk of that time was spent gathering the tools and remembering how they worked! Anyway, I thought people would like a picture:

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svrider1000
super member
*****

Reged: 06/28/12

Loc: Sylmar, California
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Astrosetz]
      #5551381 - 12/03/12 01:53 AM

Quote:

I was able to make what I'm now calling the "Everyone Tripod" in a few hours this afternoon. I have to admit a good chunk of that time was spent gathering the tools and remembering how they worked! Anyway, I thought people would like a picture:




Very nice looking. How sturdy do you think it is and how much weight do you think it can handle?


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Meadeball
sage


Reged: 10/22/12

Loc: Midlothian, Virginia
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: HGSkinner]
      #5551727 - 12/03/12 09:37 AM

Quote:

Just came in from looking at Jupiter with a crick in my neck. Any recommendations for a 90 degree diagonal for this scope?




I picked up this one about a year ago after having the same "fun" with the 45-degree diagonal included with the scope. I always wanted to try out a correct-image diagonal, and this one does not disappoint!

Orion Correct-Image Diagonal

Meade


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HGSkinner
member


Reged: 11/28/12

Loc: WI
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: Meadeball]
      #5551789 - 12/03/12 10:34 AM

Quote:



I picked up this one about a year ago after having the same "fun" with the 45-degree diagonal included with the scope. I always wanted to try out a correct-image diagonal, and this one does not disappoint!

Orion Correct-Image Diagonal

Meade




Thank you Meade!

While we are at it, any Plössl recommendations for the 102GT? The Black Knight OWL Super Plössls seem like a good value ($65 for a set of 4).

Update: More specifically, I am thinking about getting the 40mm, 15mm, and 10mm Super Plössls and the 2x Barlow. Any thoughts on this combination would be most welcome.


Edit: Super Plössls

Edited by HGSkinner (12/03/12 12:14 PM)


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Astrosetz
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/05/03

Loc: Wisconsin
Re: Nexstar 102 GT new [Re: HGSkinner]
      #5552051 - 12/03/12 01:29 PM

I'd personally recommend a standard 1.25" star diagonal, either prism or mirror type, over an erect-image prism (which are actually two prisms). Optical quality tends to be higher with the normal diagonals, in my experience. Plus, they're less expensive.

In terms of the eyepieces, I've used Celestron silvertop Plossls (26mm and 10mm) to good effect -- any decent Plossl will be a nice step up from the Huygens designs, so you almost can't go wrong there.


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