I had this telescope for a few months and Jan's post above covers the history of the telescope.
Some comments stemming from personal experience (and from seeing how my observing buddy uses it - he bought it off me):
1. I found the weight too much for the aperture (11.3 kilograms with rings and dovetail) and being an Alt/Az guy, I got tired quickly of setting it up, as it takes me the same time to setup my 12" dob (let's ignore cooling here for a minute, although in my usual weather conditions, the dob needs only 15 minutes more to acclimate courtesy of a cooling fan).
2. It rides pretty good for visual on a Celestron AVX mount (that's how my buddy uses it), so it doesn't need very heavy or expensive mounts to use. For Alt/Az use you would need a beefy mount for it and definitely a nice strong tripod. The scope has a lot of mass and needs to ride well to perform.
3. It gives more or less the same image as a standard 8" dob in terms of light gathering (or so it feels), only sharper. Let's ignore chromatic aberration on really bright stars here.
4. Not a good idea to view the moon and planets with it, although a Baader Minus Fringe filter or a yellow #8 filter improves contrast (added bonus makes the moon look like Swiss cheese). It does have better correction than a standard achromat, but this is not a planetary / lunar scope. See point 5 below.
5. Shines with deep sky objects if you are happy with the aperture, loves a Telrad and a Nagler 31mm with a passion. This is a wide field instrument which can handle quite a lot of magnification on DSO as well.
6. TS ships worldwide and since you are based in the US, you don't pay VAT so reduce the selling price you see by 19%.
I miss that scope but I don't miss all the fuss of setting it up. If I go down that road again, I will head in the direction of the new APM 140mm. At f7 and a weight of 6-7 kilos, it should offer much better correction, handle lunar and planetary "sufficiently" well and be more gentle on mounting requirements.
Bill, I thought you were planning on going with the 120mm f5 achro (yes, I had one of those as well, the TS is a much better scope). What gives?