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Is the Xt10 a good deal

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#26 LFORLEESEE

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Posted 30 June 2015 - 06:42 PM

Everything has been said,I use Orion 9x50 right angle finders on most of my dobs,it's like having a little wide field refractor sitting on top of the dob.Some nights I have spent 30 minutes viewing through it without realising it's the finder scope. Sitting on a scope chair makes it easier and less fatiguing also.

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#27 Reran

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 02:17 PM

Just when I thought that a had a good choice,  someone in the neighborhood told me that they have a telescope from the 80's in good condition in their basement: A 10.1" Coulter Odyssey 1 on an equatorial mount.

They are willing to sell it for $200.  Would this be a better (less expensive) first scope to be used in the backyard?



#28 GaryCurran

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 03:04 PM

Here's a website with the history and details of the Coulter Odyssey 8.  

 

https://sites.google...terodyssey/home

 

The 8" inch version has a tube weight of 20 pounds.  I would seriously find out what kind of Equatorial Mount your neighbor has.

 

Is it worth $200?  Only you can determine that.

 

1.  Take a POWERFUL flashlight with you.

2.  Take a NEW feather duster.

3.  Remove the telescope from the EQ Mount!

3A.Examine the outside and inside of the OTA.  Look for any cracks, dents, deformations or other obvious flaws in the outside of the tube.

4.  Check the Primary Mirror Cell at the bottom where the primary mirror is held and make sure that it is well attached and tight.  These telescopes were made of paperboard sonotubes, so you'll want to check for rot and consistency.

5.  At the top, check the 'spider vanes' which hold the secondary mirror in place to make sure that they, and the mirror itself, is secure and tight.

6.  Using the flashlight, inspect the primary mirror for dust, cobwebs and other debris.  If there is any there, gently use the new feather duster to remove them, being careful to clean the duster after each stroke.  It is vitally important that you do not scratch the mirror, so make sure the duster is clean EACH time you put it on the mirror.

7.  Again, inspect the scope's primary mirror, this time looking for any scratches, gouges, discoloration or missing reflective material.  Any of those are a "No-Go" item.

8.  Lay the scope on it's side, and gently insert a mirror between the spider vanes, and examine the secondary mirror.  Again, it should be clean, dust free, and no scratches, gouges, discoloration or missing reflective material.

9.  For both Primary and Secondary mirrors, make sure all the screws that hold it in place, and all collimation screws are there.

10.  Remove any eyepieces in the focuser, and make sure the focuser moves in and out smoothly.  There should be no binding or loose spots.

11.  With no eyepiece in the focuser, shine your flashlight down the main tube.  You should see at least part of the secondary mirror reflecting that light out the focuser.

 

EQ mount.

1.  Determine the manufacturer and model of the EQ mount.  Do an internet search and find the manufacturer and see if you can get a manual for the mount.  Check the weight rating.  For Astrophotography, your mount should have 2x the payload capacity as your OTA, Finder Scope/Auto Guider, Camera and other accessories.

2.  Unlock both the Right Ascension and Declination clutches (one at a time) and make sure the associated axis has free movement.  There should be no binding or loose spots.  

3. Retighten the clutch before moving on to the next Axis.  DO NOT ATTEMPT TO MOVE THE AXIS WITH THE CLUTCH ENGAGED!

4.  If the unit has a motor drive of some sort, make sure the motors run and that the controller is available.  Check the battery box/holder for leakage from batteries and corrosion.

5.  Make sure all of the bolts, screws and nuts are there and installed.

6.  Verify that the legs are securely connected, and that some sort of spreader or tray, or leg stops are there, so as to have a stable tripod.

7.  Check the mount itself (the mount actually sits ON the tripod and is where the telescope attaches to) and make sure that it is securely connected to the tripod.

8.  Make sure that there are enough counterweights, and that the counterweight bar has a 'Safety Stop' at the end of it.

 

Look online for threads and posts about the Coulter Odyssey telescopes.  There are several here on Cloudy Nights, as well as other sites.  Most of these seem to do with Restoration.  The scope appears to be designed as a Dobsonian mount, and my feeling that it being on an Equatorial Mount is probably not such a great idea, but others may say differently.

 

The above steps are basic steps.  I do not own a Reflector telescope of a Newtonian design, as a Dobsonian is, nor have I ever worked on one, tested on, or even considered owning one.  But, the items on the check list should give you an indication of how sound the telescope and mount will be.

 

HTH


Edited by GaryCurran, 01 July 2015 - 03:04 PM.


#29 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 03:44 PM

Just when I thought that a had a good choice,  someone in the neighborhood told me that they have a telescope from the 80's in good condition in their basement: A 10.1" Coulter Odyssey 1 on an equatorial mount.

They are willing to sell it for $200.  Would this be a better (less expensive) first scope to be used in the backyard?

 

I would pass..  Coulters were the first mass produced Dobs, crudely built with marginal optics.. It would be a project scope that would end up costing more that the XT-10..

 

Jon



#30 csrlice12

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 04:22 PM

Not to mention a mother bear to use and operate.....Kinda like the worst of all worlds....



#31 kfiscus

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 04:24 PM

I'll take the contrary point of view:  BUY IT!!!  Even if the mount can't handle it and the scope is not great, I'm guessing that the parts are worth at least $400.  I say this because I love wheeling and dealing and have built my current stable of equipment (seen in signature) by parting out scopes and upgrading as I go.  Since this is a beginner thread and newbie, that can change things, depending on bravery and budget.  At $200, there is little risk and significant potential gain.  Posting a picture of this basement scope would be most helpful, if possible.



#32 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 05:39 PM

I'll take the contrary point of view:  BUY IT!!!  Even if the mount can't handle it and the scope is not great, I'm guessing that the parts are worth at least $400.  I say this because I love wheeling and dealing and have built my current stable of equipment (seen in signature) by parting out scopes and upgrading as I go.  Since this is a beginner thread and newbie, that can change things, depending on bravery and budget.  At $200, there is little risk and significant potential gain.  Posting a picture of this basement scope would be most helpful, if possible.

 

If this were a forum for bargain hunters, I might recommend purchasing a 10.1 inch Coulter.  But this is a forum for begining amateur astronomers and whether or not the parts might be worth $400, my guess is no, the important parts, the mirrors, the objective cell, the secondary cell, the focuser, the base and the OTA, these are all of lesser quality.  There is really nothing on the scope that is of comparable quality to a Zhumell/GSO or Orion/Synta scope.

 

I know that Ken likes to buy second hand Dobsonians and I have seen him part out quite a few.  But they have been modern scopes, GSOs and Synta, not the older Coulters that gave Dobsonians such a bad reputation.. 

 

Jon



#33 kfiscus

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Posted 01 July 2015 - 07:55 PM

Jon is being reasonable, as usual. To the OP, stay the course and buy the new 10" of your choice. You can buy expecting good customer service and benefit from cheap or free shipping.  If you are up to it, see about getting the basement scope out into the daylight.  A few pictures would really help.

 

I sold my Coulter 10.1 optics for $150 in less than 24 hours.  The focuser should be worth a few bucks.  Any EQ holding a 10" has some value.  EPs, finder, etc. more $$$.  The thing that will make or break a deal is shipping...


Edited by kfiscus, 01 July 2015 - 08:04 PM.



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