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Equipment Discussions >> Equipment

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Martin Lyons
sage
*****

Reged: 10/06/08

Loc: Cape Town, South Africa
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment new [Re: JayinUT]
      #5612130 - 01/08/13 03:05 PM Attachment (56 downloads)

This is how I transport mine.
Using a trailor, It doesn't really matter what size car you use, so fuel economy is not an issue and I can buy and sell cars without having to worry about load capacity.

Martin


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ZRX-Steve
sage


Reged: 03/31/08

Loc: Phoenix, Arizona
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment *DELETED* [Re: JayinUT]
      #5612582 - 01/08/13 07:36 PM

Post deleted by ZRX-Steve

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CJK
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/05/12

Loc: Northeast TN
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: ZRX-Steve]
      #5612727 - 01/08/13 09:12 PM

Dang! I didn't know they'd discontinued the Element! I always wanted the SC version!

-- Chris


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JimMo
I'd Rather Do It Myself


Reged: 01/08/07

Loc: Under the SE Michigan lightdom...
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: ZRX-Steve]
      #5612764 - 01/08/13 09:35 PM

We bought an Element for my son to use at grad school. He loved it but after he returned it to use I wasn't thrilled with the ride or it's cargo capacity. The gas mileage loaded up with my gear was only 20 miles per gal which I get with my 13 year old Jeep Cherokee.

My brother in law is a Honda dealer and he said the Elements sell at a premium now due to limited supply of used units available. Seems most folks hang onto them, and while we didn't we got a great deal trading it in.

I always thought a Chevy Astro van would be appropriate for hauling gear. I currently have the Jeep and a 2010 Chrysler Town and Country which is very astro friendly. The light kill switch was mentioned earlier and this model year doesn't have the flashing school bus lights when opening either side door like my last one had.


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: JayinUT]
      #5612936 - 01/08/13 11:35 PM

Howdy Jay.

I'm a Subaru guy. Love 'em. Indestructible, reliable, durable, capable, capacious, reasonably fuel efficient for AWD vehicles, and they hold their value well. I have two of 'em currently. A 2007 Forester with ~140k miles on it and a new 2013 Outback. I couldn't part with the Forester even though I bought the Outback. It's just too darned useful. It has become our "truck" for nursery and hardware runs and I use it to haul my kayak to and from the river. Best of all, Subarus drive like cars.

Here's the Forester in June at 11,500 feet:



You can see the rear of the new Outback here:



The Forester handles better (sharper, almost sporty) but is noisier and less compliant. The Outback is smoother, quieter, holds more cargo and actually gets a bit better fuel economy.

Regards,

Jim


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JayinUT
I'm not Sleepy
*****

Reged: 09/19/08

Loc: Utah
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5612965 - 01/09/13 12:00 AM

Jim,

Thanks. I watched a great review of a Forester over a Rav 4 (Rav is what one rides in, and the Forester is what one drives), Rogue and the Mazda CX 5. I am mow leaning to either the Forester or the Outback. A friend has an Outback 2002 with 201,345 miles and he just got a 2012. I like his 2012 A LOT.


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bierbelly
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/23/04

Loc: Sterling, VA
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: JayinUT]
      #5613607 - 01/09/13 12:08 PM

2006 Toyota 4Runner. A nearly perfect truck (and a REAL truck to boot, with body on frame construction). Average about 20.5 mixed, and about 24 highway. Don't bother with the V8, the V6 has great power/torque.

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killdabuddha
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 08/26/11

Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: kevint1]
      #5613689 - 01/09/13 12:59 PM

Quote:

+1 for wagons

I use my wife's 2010 Subaru Outback. Admittedly, I don't carry much more than what fits in the rear cargo area floor, but it has a lot of head room back there and the rear seats fold flat for more space. My eyepiece case(s) go on the floor behind the front seats where they won't slide around when braking for deer. The Outback gets great mileage and the all wheel drive gets me up the hill to the dark site with ease in the winter. You can turn off all the interior lights and leave the rear hatch open. I set my eyepiece case(s), notebooks and snacks on the rear cargo floor and the open hatch keeps the dew off everything in the summer.




We originally got a 92 Nissan hardbody pick-up for dark sky transportation, and recently added a 99 Subaru Outback for these winter months (it has heat). The mileage is disappointing at about 22 mpg, a real surprise for any 4-cylinder and considerin the pick-up gets almost 28 mpg.


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Shneor
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 03/01/05

Loc: Northern California
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: killdabuddha]
      #5614046 - 01/09/13 04:36 PM

I transport my 22" f/4 with all accessories (including an equatorial platform), large box of charts and books, observing chair, table, camping gear when I'm out for more than overnight, in a Honda Fit. I also sleep in the Fit, on a cot and Thermarest when I'm out for more than overnight. Mileage is 35-38 mpg depending on season (California winter gas is lower mileage). I need to drive 1.5-2 hours to usual observing sites depending on where I'm observing.

Clears,


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turtle86
Pooh-Bah Everywhere Else
*****

Reged: 10/09/06

Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Aquatone]
      #5614111 - 01/09/13 05:17 PM

Quote:

I use a Sprinter Van to carry my 24" which I can wheel down ramps out of the side slide door. (Visible in the picture) As it is also a Class B RV it provides a comfy bed, air conditioning, electrical power as needed, cooking, cold drinks in the fridge, and a bathroom. It is also a diesel and does 20 to 22 mpg so quite economical for a hotel on wheels.

Chris




Chris, that's just awesome.


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turtle86
Pooh-Bah Everywhere Else
*****

Reged: 10/09/06

Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5614123 - 01/09/13 05:24 PM

Quote:

Howdy Jay.

I'm a Subaru guy. Love 'em. Indestructible, reliable, durable, capable, capacious, reasonably fuel efficient for AWD vehicles, and they hold their value well. I have two of 'em currently. A 2007 Forester with ~140k miles on it and a new 2013 Outback. I couldn't part with the Forester even though I bought the Outback. It's just too darned useful. It has become our "truck" for nursery and hardware runs and I use it to haul my kayak to and from the river. Best of all, Subarus drive like cars.

Here's the Forester in June at 11,500 feet:



You can see the rear of the new Outback here:



The Forester handles better (sharper, almost sporty) but is noisier and less compliant. The Outback is smoother, quieter, holds more cargo and actually gets a bit better fuel economy.

Regards,

Jim




Thanks for the comparo. My wife and I recently saw a new Forester and Outback on display at an art festival and both looked great. I'm pretty happy with my Honda Element for now. It's a bit spartan but it's very reliable and has an excellent cargo capacity. Since Honda is no longer makes the Element, some day one of those Subarus will most likely be my next set of astro wheels, though Chris's Sprinter Van also looks mighty tempting.


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Pat at home
sage


Reged: 03/16/07

Loc: Campbellton, New Brunswick, Ca...
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: turtle86]
      #5614209 - 01/09/13 06:18 PM Attachment (30 downloads)

This is it for me. 3500 dually 4x4 extended cab diesel.

Not kidding either.

We own an undeveloped piece of land with all around view of the sky, no neighbours for miles therefore no street lights or porch lights and a sea beach on a shallow warm water bay as a bonus. However access is a bit difficult as I've not built a proper road into the site yet but there is a trail wide enough to get this rig in. The 8 foot covered bed is big enough to carry any scope and mount I own and all the camping equipment and food for the family. The cab seats me, the boss, our daughter and the mutt.

Another place we go to is a small secluded camping park way outside of any nearby town. They deliberately turn off all outside lights when the telescope is out. So we drag a travel trailer with all the amenities, i.e. coffee maker, beer fridge and a comfy bed.


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gillmj24
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 12/06/05

Loc: PA
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Pat at home]
      #5614246 - 01/09/13 06:36 PM

I'm keeping my 10 year old 9-5 as long as I can. It's orphaned now

Once I fit a Meade RCX400 12" in a HUGE JMI case (same case as the 14" LX200), Huge RCX tripod (which thankfully separated into 4 pieces), LX200R 10" OTA, LXD750 HUGE mount, and HUGE folding tripod (tall version). No room for passengers that night though. Also have fit a 20" f5 obsession, though the altitude bearings were hitting the roof.

Also mine is souped up a bit so at 300HP/285ft-lb max, it doesn't quite get the sticker mileage (24 is typical on the highway doing 65mph, rated 27 though I could get above 30 doing 55 driving slowly with scopes). I'd probably win any race among other scope haulers though!


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Alvin Huey
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/18/05

Loc: NorCal
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Pat at home]
      #5614252 - 01/09/13 06:38 PM

Third one down

VW Beetle. I had two VW Beetles, the one with a supercharged VR6 has a blown tranny.



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Starman1
Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)
*****

Reged: 06/24/03

Loc: Los Angeles
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Alvin Huey]
      #5614265 - 01/09/13 06:43 PM

Alvin has me beat: twice the scope in half the space.

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CJK
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/05/12

Loc: Northeast TN
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Alvin Huey]
      #5614300 - 01/09/13 07:03 PM

Quote:

Third one down

VW Beetle. I had two VW Beetles, the one with a supercharged VR6 has a blown tranny.






I was waiting for a picture showing all the clowns getting out

Seriously, you deserve some sort of award for most enormous scope in a small car

-- Chris


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bherv
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 03/10/06

Loc: WMass
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Alvin Huey]
      #5614325 - 01/09/13 07:19 PM Attachment (22 downloads)

Not good on gas but great for hauling my equipment and towing my 21 foot camper, my 1998 Dodge Durango. Since my commute to work is only 4 to 5 miles each way, I am not spending a fortune on gas. I usually only have to fill it every two weeks.Plus I have a gas rewards card that I earn points on every day when filling my company truck and use points to save 10 cents or more a gallon when filling my Durango. It is only 45 miles to our club's dark sky site so it is not a big expense to go observing.
Barry


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Alvin Huey
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/18/05

Loc: NorCal
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: CJK]
      #5614397 - 01/09/13 07:53 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Third one down

VW Beetle. I had two VW Beetles, the one with a supercharged VR6 has a blown tranny.






I was waiting for a picture showing all the clowns getting out

Seriously, you deserve some sort of award for most enormous scope in a small car

-- Chris




And my supercharged Beetle moves really well. 0-60 in 4.6 sec. Now I gotta get that tranny replaced.


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Dan Watt
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 10/13/09

Loc: Oceanside, Calfornia.
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Alvin Huey]
      #5614576 - 01/09/13 09:58 PM

1985 Volvo 240 Wagon with 360,000 miles.



Got a cargo carrier for free!


I picked this up over a year ago for $420 off Craigslist, it wasn't running at the time. Tossed in a new fuel pump and everythings perfect now. I can haul an impressive amount of gear and two people can comfortable sleep in the back with the seats folded down. I've upgraded the suspension a bit and it has no problem traveling miles down washboard dirt roads and while it's a little slow I can still make it to all the faraway dark sites in the mountains while its fully loaded. Best of all, I get 25-30 mpg. Everything works, doesn't leak a drop of anything so I'm not going to be getting rid of it anytime soon. I recently looked at new cars and I really can't find anything that I'd be happier with. Considering it costs me maybe $500 a year in maintenance I think I'll keep it!

Edited by Dan Watt (01/09/13 10:01 PM)


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StephenW
member


Reged: 02/04/05

Loc: San Jose, CA
Re: Vehicles Use for Transporting Telescope Equipment [Re: Dan Watt]
      #5614604 - 01/09/13 10:22 PM

Subaru Forester for me. Handles all my gear, drives like a car and isn't afraid of some off-roading

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