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60 day review of ETX 80

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89 replies to this topic

#76 SamplingNature

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Posted 02 September 2019 - 04:37 PM

As for tripod issues earlier in this thread, I had luck stabilizing the tripod with a 10-pound dumbbell and a length of rope that I made adjustable with a few grinner (noose-type) knots.

#77 MikeC268

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 11:18 AM

I've just seen what looks like an ETX80 on a local buy, swap and sell group for €100. I'm very tempted. I have a CPC1100 which barely gets used due to me having done my shoulder and I could barely lift the thing before! From the sound of it the ETX would be a bit of fun that I could sling in the car or quickly whip outside.

 

Anything in particular I should be looking for when I go to see it tomorrow?



#78 aeajr

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 06:34 PM

Check the tripod to be sure the legs lock fully extended with the scope mounted.

Read the manual on the easy alignment the night before. Take it through a full alignment process even if it is daytime. You want to be sure the motors run smoothly with no skips or getting stuck.

Make sure you have all the parts.

Edited by aeajr, 18 October 2019 - 06:35 PM.


#79 MikeC268

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Posted 23 October 2019 - 11:48 AM

Check the tripod to be sure the legs lock fully extended with the scope mounted.

Read the manual on the easy alignment the night before. Take it through a full alignment process even if it is daytime. You want to be sure the motors run smoothly with no skips or getting stuck.

Make sure you have all the parts.

Thanks for the advice, didn't even get that far. It was a very dodgy deal. Bloke selling it said he'd meet me then take me to see the scope. Met me with the scope in his car, which set the alarm bells ringing straight away. Got the scope powered on, handset came up with a message saying 'motor drive error' or similar and wouldn't go any further. Bloke was pushing me to take it anyway, halved the price. Even at €50 I reckoned it was more trouble than its worth.



#80 aeajr

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Posted 23 October 2019 - 02:56 PM

Smart move. Probably stolen.

#81 ManintheMoon

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 11:51 AM

Has anyone heard or did anyone read where the New ETX 80 cannot be put in a equatorial setting or mode on a equatorial wedge? We had the ETX 70 and ETX 60 and both we could put into equatorial mode on a wedge. Every ETX we have played with over the years they all could be place in equatorial mode. In the AutoStar hand controller the function is there to put it into eq mode and you can turn it on but once you exit it resets. Meade knows about this and no where in their documentation does it disclose this fact and the manual that came with the scope was revised in July of 2016 Rev3 which seem to cover the last models but was not updated to this new version. 

Thank you



#82 oldman21

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 12:40 PM

I really enjoyed the article about the ETX 80 60 day report.  I guess I am not so lucky with mine.  Just purchased the new model and to tell 

the truth, I am not impressed.  Maybe I expect too much from the scope.  The biggest problem is the flimsy tripod.  I cannot believe Meade

would market the scope with it.  Useless is an understatement.  Granted, the scope is cheap.  I got mine for under 300 dollars.  After owning

an ETX 125 and an LX 90, maybe I was spoiled.  I am 74 and have been out of astronomy due to health for several years.  Unfortunately, 

I no longer own the bigger scopes.  Just getting back into astronomy, I am stuck with it for a while at least.  Between the shaky tripod and focus

mechanism, it is not a fun scope.  



#83 aeajr

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Posted 27 January 2020 - 05:25 PM

Yes, the tripod is the weak part of the package but I found it at least useable.  But if you just got it and dislike it that much, return it. 

 

However, if you want options, I moved mine to an old ETX 60 mount which was much more steady.  You can get these used quite cheaply.  The ETX 60, 70 and ETX 80 AT all have that stronger tripod.   The ETX 70/80 have the lighter weight tripod like the one you have. Still not the rock of Gibraltar, but more steady than the light weight travel tripod that comes with the ETX 80 observer.

 

When I got the ETX 125 EC, used, I found that they had the same bolt pattern.  So the ETX 80 is now used on the ETX 125 tripod.  

 

When I have them both out I put the ETX 80 on the ETX 60 tripod. 

 

 

Ebay - ETX AT Tripod

This is the Sturdier AT tripod

https://www.ebay.com...CoAAOSw8LZeH6O8

 

 

If you are handy you can make this up and chuck the tripod that came with the ETX.  

Super Simple Tabletop telescope stand
https://www.youtube....h?v=HsGD9mU8cR0
http://www.eyesonthe...eTripod2x4.aspx


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#84 HeathM98

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Posted 02 March 2020 - 10:53 AM

Hey Ed,

 

I’m thinking about adding the ETX-80 to my stable for a travel scope. I’m currently lugging the ETX 60 around and would like the extra light grab from the 80. My question is this, I’m wondering if it will fit in my current camera backpack, the Lowepro Protactic 450. 
 

Can you measure yours for me? I can’t find the dimensions online, except for the complete box or fully assembled on the tripod. How tall is it upright and how wide from knob to knob?

 

My ETX-60 is 17” from base to the tip sitting upright and about 8 3/4” across from knob to knob, and 7 1/4” on the widest part of the base, in case anyone is wondering. It fits in my camera bag nicely. There is room to spare, but not a ton, particularly in the length. I can fit maybe 18-18 1/2” in length in this backpack. I just don’t think the included backpack is padded enough to take the telescope and my DSLR around the world as a carryon.

 

So I’m wondering how much longer the 80 is and if I can squeeze it in my current setup. 
 

Thanks for the info,



#85 HeathM98

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Posted 02 March 2020 - 11:29 AM

Actually, just remeasured the length, I forgot that if I turn the focus all the way in it shortens it significantly. The ETX-60 is only 16-1/4” if you turn the focus until it’s all the way in. 
 

The extra 50mm in FL would, in theory make it around 2” longer. But with the whole fork being redesigned and fitting the 80 and 90 now, I’m curious how long it is now...


Edited by HeathM98, 02 March 2020 - 11:30 AM.


#86 soarbooks

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Posted 09 April 2020 - 03:00 PM

Hi HeathM98, did you get an answer about the length of the fork and tube of the ETX 80? -soarbooks



#87 oldman21

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Posted 19 July 2020 - 07:47 PM

Yes, the tripod is the weak part of the package but I found it at least useable.  But if you just got it and dislike it that much, return it. 

 

However, if you want options, I moved mine to an old ETX 60 mount which was much more steady.  You can get these used quite cheaply.  The ETX 60, 70 and ETX 80 AT all have that stronger tripod.   The ETX 70/80 have the lighter weight tripod like the one you have. Still not the rock of Gibraltar, but more steady than the light weight travel tripod that comes with the ETX 80 observer.

 

When I got the ETX 125 EC, used, I found that they had the same bolt pattern.  So the ETX 80 is now used on the ETX 125 tripod.  

 

When I have them both out I put the ETX 80 on the ETX 60 tripod. 

 

 

Ebay - ETX AT Tripod

This is the Sturdier AT tripod

https://www.ebay.com...CoAAOSw8LZeH6O8

 

 

If you are handy you can make this up and chuck the tripod that came with the ETX.  

Super Simple Tabletop telescope stand
https://www.youtube....h?v=HsGD9mU8cR0
http://www.eyesonthe...eTripod2x4.aspx

I did solve my tripod problem with my ETX 80.  I bought a new ETX 125 and use that tripod when I want to use the small scope.  I also took the ETX tripod and spent some time making it sturdy.  It is useable, but the heavier tripod makes a big difference.


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#88 aeajr

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Posted 20 July 2020 - 01:19 PM

I also have an ETX 125 and use that tripod today with the ETX 80.   But I also use the ETX 60 tripod with it at times.   The ETX 60 tripod is simlar to he tripod I had with the original ETX 80 AT package.  That tripod was pretty good.  So I have two options.

 

The tripod that comes with the ETX observer is too wobbly for my taste.   I would love to see what you did to improve it.



#89 oldman21

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Posted 20 July 2020 - 06:35 PM

Thanks for responding:  First, I do not use the tripod anywhere except in the same spot in my yard.  The surface is concrete.  I do not need to fold or otherwise adjust the tripod for viewing.  I made anti vibration pads with hot melt glue, the bottoms of the pads are carpeted.  I NEVER use the thin, useless bottom section of the tripod, since I sit while viewing.  I drilled and replaced the bolts that attach the base to the legs, then shot hot melt glue into the joints to give them some vibration-dampening power.  I drove a thin(.64 inch) piece of wood where the tripod legs join. (the tripod will not longer collapse).  This has greatly stiffened the tripod.  I have timed the vibration after touching the eyepiece from 6-8 seconds to about two seconds. I do not travel with a telescope so no problem.



#90 oldman21

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Posted 20 July 2020 - 06:38 PM

One other item I need to mention about the ET 80 tripod.  I always hang a gallon milk jug filled with water from the bottom hook.




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