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Best 12" dob?

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#1 brandonrworkman

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 10:17 PM

Hello everyone, this is my first post (kind of exciting!), and I plan on buying a new telescope in the near future. I wanted to know what the best choice for a 12" dobsonian (no go-to or tracking) would be. As of right now, I have an Orion XT8 Plus, which is great, don't get me wrong, but I wish I had just gotten a 12" instead. I guess I caught a case of aperture fever haha. Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

 

Cheers! 


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#2 kfiscus

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 10:48 PM

I recommend the Zhumell 12" or Orion's SkyLine 12".  They're the same scope with different decals.


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#3 brandonrworkman

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 11:05 PM

I recommend the Zhumell 12" or Orion's SkyLine 12".  They're the same scope with different decals.

I've heard good things about the Z12, but I can't find them anywhere



#4 cookjaiii

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 11:25 PM

I read on one of the CL forums that GSO shut down the Zhumell line a few months ago. You'll have to find one used if you are set on a Z12. I think Apertura is the same scope.


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#5 aeajr

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Posted 01 March 2018 - 11:53 PM

Zhumell is gone so they are only available used.

 

So, what is your budget?   

 

I hear very good things about Teeter Telescopes

https://www.teeterst...pes.com/classic

 

 

A 12.5" Obsession might be what you are looking for

http://www.obsession.../12.5/index.php

 

 

Explore Scientific truss dobs for very compact designs

https://explorescien...-tube-dobsonian


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#6 M57Guy

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 12:47 AM

I recommend the Zhumell 12" or Orion's SkyLine 12".  They're the same scope with different decals.

Unfortunately, I see the SkyLine is "Not available for sale or delivery to California addresses"

 

undecided.gif

 

Poking fun at the land of fruits and nuts I live in are welcomed.


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#7 Tony Flanders

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 05:35 AM

Is price an issue? Do you want the best mass-market 12-inch Dob or the best 12-inch Dob regardless of cost? For what it's worth, for reasons of tradition, 12.5 inches is actually a much more common size than 12, at least among custom-built scopes.


Edited by Tony Flanders, 02 March 2018 - 05:36 AM.

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#8 Starkid2u

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 09:22 AM

Do you want go-to or manual? I own the PUSH-TO Orion XX12i Truss-Tube Dob. A compromise between Go-To and manual. It finds 'em, you're the motor. Orion also makes the Truss-Tube GO-TO dobs as well. You should have a look at them. If these are not to your liking, I suggest the Explore Scientific 12" Truss-Tube model. It's all manual but it'll get the job done, if you know what I mean. Nice scope, nice to look at. That's my view from here...

 

STARKID2U


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#9 aeajr

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 09:35 AM

Hello everyone, this is my first post (kind of exciting!), and I plan on buying a new telescope in the near future. I wanted to know what the best choice for a 12" dobsonian (no go-to or tracking) would be. As of right now, I have an Orion XT8 Plus, which is great, don't get me wrong, but I wish I had just gotten a 12" instead. I guess I caught a case of aperture fever haha. Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

 

Cheers! 

Remember, you said the BEST.  That means the best mirror on the best base with the best focuser.   That means a high price.   

 

Or do you mean the best choice on a limited budget?   now we are talking Z12, Apertura 12, Orion Skyline12, Orion XX12i, Meade Lightbridge 12, Skywatcher 12, Explore Scientific 12 and similar.  They are good scopes, but they are not the best.  They are midrange commercials scopes.  That will show you a lot and serve you for years, but they are not the BEST.  In fact they are all about equal.

 

It all comes down to budget.  What is your budget?  Do you  have the budget for the BEST, or are you trying to find the best you can get within your limited budget?


Edited by aeajr, 02 March 2018 - 09:36 AM.

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#10 brandonrworkman

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 10:32 AM

 

Hello everyone, this is my first post (kind of exciting!), and I plan on buying a new telescope in the near future. I wanted to know what the best choice for a 12" dobsonian (no go-to or tracking) would be. As of right now, I have an Orion XT8 Plus, which is great, don't get me wrong, but I wish I had just gotten a 12" instead. I guess I caught a case of aperture fever haha. Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

 

Cheers! 

Remember, you said the BEST.  That means the best mirror on the best base with the best focuser.   That means a high price.   

 

Or do you mean the best choice on a limited budget?   now we are talking Z12, Apertura 12, Orion Skyline12, Orion XX12i, Meade Lightbridge 12, Skywatcher 12, Explore Scientific 12 and similar.  They are good scopes, but they are not the best.  They are midrange commercials scopes.  That will show you a lot and serve you for years, but they are not the BEST.  In fact they are all about equal.

 

It all comes down to budget.  What is your budget?  Do you  have the budget for the BEST, or are you trying to find the best you can get within your limited budget?

 

I should have clarified on price range, my fault. I would like the best for my price range, probably looking to spend around $900-$1,000. So I guess, not the best scope, but a high quality scope within that range. 


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#11 brandonrworkman

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 10:36 AM

I read on one of the CL forums that GSO shut down the Zhumell line a few months ago. You'll have to find one used if you are set on a Z12. I think Apertura is the same scope.

 

Yeah I saw that too. I was looking at the Apertura AD12, I've heard some good reviews about that scope, can anyone confirm?


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#12 kfiscus

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 10:45 AM

Apertura is the same GSO scope as Zhumell and Orion's SkyLine.  Get one if you can. The Orion-not-shipping-to-California policy is because of formaldehyde in the particle board base.


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#13 aeajr

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 12:19 PM

Apertura, Orion, Skywatcher, are all good.   The tube and mirror, at least, come out of one of two factories both of which would be considered good.  They differ mostly by accessories and many have identical accessories and sell at the same price. 

 

 

SOLID TUBE DOBS

 

Skyline and Apertura are the same scope.  I would happily have either of these.

 

Orion Skyline 12 - $849

https://www.telescop...keyword=skyline

 

Apertura 12 - $879

https://www.telescop...ccessories-ad12

 

 

TRUSS DOBS - COME APART FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT

 

Skywatcher Collapsable 12" - $1015

https://www.telescop...onian-telescope

 

 

Meade LightBridge 12 Truss Dob $999

https://www.astronom...ope_p10680.aspx

 

 

Explore Scientific - Truss Dob that packs up really small - $1200

https://explorescien...-tube-dobsonian

 

 

ADDING SOME INTELLIGENCE

 

Orion XT12 Intelliscope - PushTo system - $1300

https://www.telescop...ts?keyword=XT12

 

 

Since you have an XT8 you understand what a Dob is.   You likely have accessories, extra eyepieces, added Telrad or other finder, maybe a laser collimator, filters, etc, so I don't know how much you care about the accessories that come with the scopes.

 

You said no GoTo or tracking but I did list the Intelliscope.  It finds but does not have motors.  I have the XT8 intelliscope.  Can use it with the computer or strictly manual, depending on what I am trying to find.

 

 

I don't know about your storage or transportation needs so I don't know if a collapsable or truss are valuable to you.   A 12 is going to be bigger and heavier than your XT8.  

 

 

 

SIGNATURE:   If you wish, you can create a signature (my settings)
where you can list your telescope or eyepieces or whatever you wish.  My
signature is at the bottom of this post.  A signature helps people help you
because they know what you have.  We get a lot of requests from people
saying, "I am new, what eyepieces should I get?"   Now we play 20 questions
to find out what telescope they have, what eyepieces they already own, etc.


Edited by aeajr, 02 March 2018 - 12:32 PM.

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#14 brandonrworkman

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 01:09 PM

Apertura, Orion, Skywatcher, are all good.   The tube and mirror, at least, come out of one of two factories both of which would be considered good.  They differ mostly by accessories and many have identical accessories and sell at the same price. 

 

 

SOLID TUBE DOBS

 

Skyline and Apertura are the same scope.  I would happily have either of these.

 

Orion Skyline 12 - $849

https://www.telescop...keyword=skyline

 

Apertura 12 - $879

https://www.telescop...ccessories-ad12

 

 

TRUSS DOBS - COME APART FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT

 

Skywatcher Collapsable 12" - $1015

https://www.telescop...onian-telescope

 

 

Meade LightBridge 12 Truss Dob $999

https://www.astronom...ope_p10680.aspx

 

 

Explore Scientific - Truss Dob that packs up really small - $1200

https://explorescien...-tube-dobsonian

 

 

ADDING SOME INTELLIGENCE

 

Orion XT12 Intelliscope - PushTo system - $1300

https://www.telescop...ts?keyword=XT12

 

 

Since you have an XT8 you understand what a Dob is.   You likely have accessories, extra eyepieces, added Telrad or other finder, maybe a laser collimator, filters, etc, so I don't know how much you care about the accessories that come with the scopes.

 

You said no GoTo or tracking but I did list the Intelliscope.  It finds but does not have motors.  I have the XT8 intelliscope.  Can use it with the computer or strictly manual, depending on what I am trying to find.

 

 

I don't know about your storage or transportation needs so I don't know if a collapsable or truss are valuable to you.   A 12 is going to be bigger and heavier than your XT8.  

 

 

 

SIGNATURE:   If you wish, you can create a signature (my settings)
where you can list your telescope or eyepieces or whatever you wish.  My
signature is at the bottom of this post.  A signature helps people help you
because they know what you have.  We get a lot of requests from people
saying, "I am new, what eyepieces should I get?"   Now we play 20 questions
to find out what telescope they have, what eyepieces they already own, etc.

Thank mate, I just added a signature waytogo.gif . I'll look into the Apertura AD12 I think 


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#15 Chucky

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 01:15 PM

<<  The Orion-not-shipping-to-California policy is because of formaldehyde in the particle board base.  >>

 

Glad the dangerous chemical properties of formaldehyde are limited only to California !  


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#16 Tony Flanders

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 03:00 PM

Be aware that a sold-tube 12-inch Dob is really big, heavy, and clumsy. Most adults can handle the tube, but it's a serious burden. That's why this is about the point where many if not most people switch to truss-tube construction.


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#17 SteveG

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 03:05 PM

Be aware that a sold-tube 12-inch Dob is really big, heavy, and clumsy. Most adults can handle the tube, but it's a serious burden. That's why this is about the point where many if not most people switch to truss-tube construction.

Or at least the collapsible Skywatcher, which gets very good reviews.



#18 100MPG

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 03:27 PM

<<  The Orion-not-shipping-to-California policy is because of formaldehyde in the particle board base.  >>

 

Glad the dangerous chemical properties of formaldehyde are limited only in  California !  

fify. I don't plan on eating any dobsonian bases so I should be ok. 


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#19 dr.who

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 03:52 PM

Best to look at a truss or collapsible Dob in that size mate. A 12” Dob is a big heavy beast. Explore Scientific, Skywatcher, and Orion have good options for this.

Formaldehyde, from memory, can off gas out of the particle board so there is a risk beyond eating it. Remember the FEMA mobile home formaldehyde disaster of a few years ago?

#20 kfiscus

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 04:44 PM

I made my solid-tube 12" dob much lighter- I bought a 16".  (Thought stolen from Jon Isaacs.)


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#21 Billytk

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 05:38 PM

My Apertura AD8 is an excellent little grab and go scope. Gives very good views. I used to have an Orion solid tube 12" Dob. It was a real crowd pleaser. I miss it.

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#22 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 06:16 PM

 

Be aware that a sold-tube 12-inch Dob is really big, heavy, and clumsy. Most adults can handle the tube, but it's a serious burden. That's why this is about the point where many if not most people switch to truss-tube construction.

Or at least the collapsible Skywatcher, which gets very good reviews.

 

 

I have a friend with the 12 inch collapsible Sky Watcher. The collapsed tube is shorter which is good but it's still a big, heavy tube and base.

 

If Brandon has a vehicle that can handle the 12 inch Apertura, that would be my choice.  

 

I have some pretty big scopes but every time I see a 12 inch F/5 Dob, I surprised how big it is, probably because I comp are it subconsciously to my 10 inch F/5.

 

jon


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#23 brandonrworkman

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:10 PM

Best to look at a truss or collapsible Dob in that size mate. A 12” Dob is a big heavy beast. Explore Scientific, Skywatcher, and Orion have good options for this.

Formaldehyde, from memory, can off gas out of the particle board so there is a risk beyond eating it. Remember the FEMA mobile home formaldehyde disaster of a few years ago?

Thanks, I think I'll look into the Orion SkyLine 12" in that case. The weight really isn't an issue, I'm only 20 and in good shape, so I'm not worried about that.


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#24 brandonrworkman

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:11 PM

 

 

Be aware that a sold-tube 12-inch Dob is really big, heavy, and clumsy. Most adults can handle the tube, but it's a serious burden. That's why this is about the point where many if not most people switch to truss-tube construction.

Or at least the collapsible Skywatcher, which gets very good reviews.

 

 

I have a friend with the 12 inch collapsible Sky Watcher. The collapsed tube is shorter which is good but it's still a big, heavy tube and base.

 

If Brandon has a vehicle that can handle the 12 inch Apertura, that would be my choice.  

 

I have some pretty big scopes but every time I see a 12 inch F/5 Dob, I surprised how big it is, probably because I comp are it subconsciously to my 10 inch F/5.

 

jon

 

 

My mom has a minivan, so I think I'm set waytogo.gif 


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#25 Starman1

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 07:34 PM

Look at the 12" Meade LightBridge--also a GSO but much less difficult to transport.


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