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Any ex-refractor guys here?

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#1 starcruiser

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:22 PM

I'm wondering if there are "SCT guys" here who used to be one of the following below:

 

1. Refractor guy ->became SCT guy.

2. SCT guy ->becomes Refractor guy ->became SCT guy again.

 

If so, why?

 

 


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#2 AxelB

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:28 PM

For me, it’s more like an sct and refractor guy at the same time.

Sct for high power. Fast refractor for wide field.
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#3 Kevin Barker

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:36 PM

I am using Mak's more than SCT's/refractors theses days.

 

Compact and great images. More aperture and better resolution for most types of observing. And a fair bit cheaper.

 

I have one SCT which I do use occasionally.



#4 macdonjh

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:38 PM

During my first couple of years, I really thought I'd be a refractor guy.  I bought a really nice 6" f/12 achro that I still have.  However, aperture fever is so expensive to cure with lenses I started buying mirrors.  First a C11, then a classical Cassegrain.


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#5 Astro-Master

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:47 PM

I went from a 10" SCT to a 18" Obsession, then bought a 105mm Apo for wide field, and a ES 6" Mak-Newt also for wide field.  I use them all, but the 18" Dob is king under a dark sky!


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#6 MalVeauX

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 06:59 PM

I'm both.

 

I swap between several refractors (80mm to 150mm) and two SCTs (200mm & 250mm).

 

Why?

 

Imaging scale, FOV and resolution. Depends on what my target is. I often have a refractor & SCT side by side at all times for viewing & imaging.

 

For wide FOV and long exposure (DSO), I like refractors. For bright things that need a lot of magnification and big apertures to resolve details, I like SCTs (planets, lunar, solar).

 

Solarsetup_01_04082019.jpg

 

solarsetup_04032019.jpg

 

Very best,


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#7 fullotto

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:21 PM

i used to be. like most, i was into ap. fever. my refrac. was not very large( 60mm) and i wanted to see dso`s a lot & image them.

just now i bought a used but in mint cond. 80mm Meade 312. i was remembering the great views i had of the planets & doubles

and i decided to buy the 312. so for me, getting another refrac. is just to bring back some good memories.

 

but i still love my sct and will never stop using it!


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#8 Dynan

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:22 PM

Funny you should ask. I'm just about to launch my new ES ED127CF and was putting together an ad to sell my C11.

 

Then I got to thinking...I sez to myself, I sez, "Self...you may never own one of these large apertures again. What's the hurry? It's safely stored at my pier, semi-dark site. It's in great shape, unlike yourself. Why not hang on to it for a while, at least long enough to see if the refractor will do what you'd like to do? You don't need the money right now, and you can still lift it onto the CGX."

 

Myself sez, back to me, it sez,"Yeah! What HE sez..."

 

So I scuttled the ad process. Also seeing that to ship it to a buyer, insured for replacement cost, could cost up to $300. And I'd be giving Mr. PayPal a decent chunk of change just to sell it.

 

It'll be hanging around until I need some finances.


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#9 Astrojedi

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:36 PM

SCT guys/gals are very practical. We like to use the right tool for the job. So we use both SCTs and refractors and understand the benefits and limitations of each. But there are a few folks on the refractor forums who would need holy water after touching a SCT as it is obviously the work of the devil : )

Edited by Astrojedi, 08 April 2019 - 07:36 PM.

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#10 AxelB

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:41 PM

Funny you should ask. I'm just about to launch my new ES ED127CF and was putting together an ad to sell my C11.

Then I got to thinking...I sez to myself, I sez, "Self...you may never own one of these large apertures again. What's the hurry? It's safely stored at my pier, semi-dark site. It's in great shape, unlike yourself. Why not hang on to it for a while, at least long enough to see if the refractor will do what you'd like to do? You don't need the money right now, and you can still lift it onto the CGX."

Myself sez, back to me, it sez,"Yeah! What HE sez..."

So I scuttled the ad process. Also seeing that to ship it to a buyer, insured for replacement cost, could cost up to $300. And I'd be giving Mr. PayPal a decent chunk of change just to sell it.

It'll be hanging around until I need some finances.


Keep both, they are complementary.
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#11 Neptune

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:41 PM

I fall under category 2.  I had a variety of small to mid/large sized SCT's that where bought and sold.   I started with a 8" new orange tube C8 from 1977 (Thanks Edwin Hirsch, R.I.P.). next up was a C5 orange tube, and another orange C8 (wobbly fork mount), then on to a black tube C11 (horrible optics, the corrector had been messed with, not original), next a Meade 12" (so, so optics). Then a TEC140 APO.  Stunning optics, but I was looking for more image brightness as my eye's are definitely getting older. Purchased a carbon tube C11with stunning optics to compare with the TEC140.  Very similar performance on faint stars but the C11 did make nebula look better/brighter. Sold both because of what came next... A once in a life time lucky shot at an Astro-Physics Starfire 175 EDF.  Great scope, but it really does not defy the laws of physics.  It is an excellent performing 6.9" telescope.  Image brightness was much better than the TEC140, albeit for about 5 times the price!  Next up was a C11 EDGE HD.   Wonderful performer. Had a chance to compare the 175 against the C11 edge on one occasion.  The APO was sharper, but not by much. Jupiter showed about the same amount of detail that evening with both scopes.  Nebula are brighter in the C11 showing more detail in my light polluted skies.  The 175 was eventually sold, regrettably.  It was a very heavy tube assembly with the 175 weighing about 55 pounds. I usually mounted the tube on a AP900 mount by myself.   I only have the C11 edge now.  I figure it is a most bang for the buck in a SCT.  I am a huge proponent of that philosphy.   Eventually Aperture Fever will strike again and I can see a C14 edge in my future, someday.   Most people say (with due respect) that no scope does everything and you need at least 2 scopes.  Maybe a 6" APO and a decent size reflector, say 14"-16" or a C11/C14 SCT might do the trick.


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#12 GlendaleGuy

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Posted 08 April 2019 - 07:52 PM

I'm wondering if there are "SCT guys" here who used to be one of the following below:

 

1. Refractor guy ->became SCT guy.

2. SCT guy ->becomes Refractor guy ->became SCT guy again.

 

If so, why?

Number 1.  I started with a 2.4" refractor followed by a Meade 3.1" refractor. I moved to the Celestron SCT chasing more light gathering power and resolution. In the future I may split and get an 11" SCT as well as small refractor to use on the same mount. Also to be determined.....


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#13 treadmarks

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 09:38 AM

When I was just getting started in this hobby, I much preferred refractors based on the available information and my first telescope was a cheap refractor. A year later I was hitting the limits of its aperture and glass so I got an SCT. And it was not easy to make the switch to SCTs -- if you set aside things like cost and size/mounting, refractors are better aperture for aperture -- more light throughput, more contrast. Problem is, to get a big aperture in a refractor you need to spend as much as a house and get a mount as big as a house.

 

So I had to get over the whole "refractor views" thing. In exchange I got to see "reflector views" - well-resolved globular clusters, spiral arms on galaxies, Ganymede resolved to a disc, etc. On the first night of good seeing with my new SCT, I was shocked by how much detail I saw in the clouds of Jupiter.

 

Given what I've now seen, I'm not sure what an APO refractor can do for me that my SCT can't, and I'm sure that I'm not using my SCT to its full potential. So they just don't seem worth the large amounts of money to me when I already have a very capable instrument. Everyone points to the wide fields but I still have my 660mm FL refractor for that and it only applies to maybe a dozen objects. While I still own and occasionally use a refractor I don't think I'm primarily a "refractor guy" anymore.



#14 Swanny

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 09:47 AM

Well, I have an fsq106 but during galaxy season it is limited.  So I am looking at an AG Optical 10" to satisfy those needs.  Howard at AP said my Mach 1 will handle that fine so I am just saving my $ to get the scope hopefully next winter/spring.



#15 kkrepps

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 11:26 AM

For me, it’s more like an sct and refractor guy at the same time.

Sct for high power. Fast refractor for wide field.

I'm with Apollo here. I sold my 80mm ED refractor when I got a C6 because the SCT was way superior in capability, but then I got a complementary refractor because the SCT just doesn't do wide fields.


Edited by kkrepps, 09 April 2019 - 11:28 AM.

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#16 erin

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 11:45 AM

This Astro gal is a fan of both. I love refractor views and portability, but for larger aperture, sct is the way to go for me! I just got an 8, but it is out of collimation, so next clear night, I will be making some adjustments. My 6 is awesome. I forget it isn’t a refractor when I am looking through it.


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#17 Tyson M

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 01:06 PM

I am a refractor guy at heart for casual use, but main scopes are always some kind of reflector / cassegrain.  I can see myself owning a bunch of refractors just to enjoy using every now and then for specific purposes/targets.



#18 schmeah

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 01:35 PM

I’m an imager mainly. While still officially a refractor and an SCT guy. But I haven’t touched my refractor in over a year. Reason? You really can run out of widefield refractor targets after ten years of frequent imaging. You can NEVER run out of small long FL targets. Even tiny portions of large emission nebulae take on a new perspective at long FL.

Derek

Edited by schmeah, 09 April 2019 - 01:36 PM.

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#19 photoracer18

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 03:12 PM

I use everything so I am just a telescope guy. I firmly believe everyone who is serious and old enough to afford it needs at least one each of a refractor, a Newtonian, and a catadioptric. In my case its 3 or more of each.


Edited by photoracer18, 09 April 2019 - 03:13 PM.


#20 fullotto

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 03:28 PM

I use everything so I am just a telescope guy. I firmly believe everyone who is serious and old enough to afford it needs at least one each of a refractor, a Newtonian, and a catadioptric. In my case its 3 or more of each.

i`m curious, all things being equal ( at least as much as they can be as far as aperture, f.l. , magnification, e.p. fl. etc.) if your looking at the same object with a refractor, reflector, & a cat...what would you see different in all 3?

 

reason im asking is for all the years i have been an amateur, i have never looked thru a reflector. where i live and being there are no fellow amateurs near me i just have never looked thru one.



#21 Astrojedi

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 03:38 PM

i`m curious, all things being equal ( at least as much as they can be as far as aperture, f.l. , magnification, e.p. fl. etc.) if your looking at the same object with a refractor, reflector, & a cat...what would you see different in all 3?

 

reason im asking is for all the years i have been an amateur, i have never looked thru a reflector. where i live and being there are no fellow amateurs near me i just have never looked thru one.

Actually the reason to own scopes of different designs is exactly because all things are not equal. If everyone could own and manage to use a 16” apo refractor for the cost of say a 16” dob then it would be a no brainer to buy the refractor due to its unobstructed design. The problem is that the refractor design has serious limitations with respect to how it scales with aperture. There is just no way for me to compare a 16” refractor to a 16” dob.

 

Generally I prefer refractors in <5” of aperture, SCTs in 6-9.25” of aperture and Dobs for >10” of aperture. Others will likely have their own breakpoints.


Edited by Astrojedi, 09 April 2019 - 03:40 PM.

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#22 fullotto

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 07:06 PM

ok i was just wondering what would get me to purchase a reflector. if maybe somehow looking at a planet or dso would look better visually in a reflector i would buy one but just not to have one. the view of the particular object would have to show detail that would otherwise not be seen in an sct or refract. just my opinion  though


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#23 Don W

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 07:25 PM

I'm not sure I like the premise. I enjoy scopes of many configurations nearly equally. I can't picture myself not having an SCT, refractor and reflector all at the same time.


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#24 jgraham

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 07:31 PM

+1

 

The right tool for the right job.

 

I enjoy my SCTs for general-purpose observing and they are the scopes that I use most often.

 

On the refractor side of the house I enjoy my 80 & 100mm EDs; something special happens when all of the light goes where it is supposed to. My biggo 6" f/8 achromat has emerged as my favorite RFT; I can max-out the exit pupil without worrying about seeing the shadow of a secondary.

 

Love'm all and blessed to have the opportunity to own a few. :)

 

What a wonderful hobby!


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#25 bbqediguana

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 07:34 PM

As far as my primary scope goes, I fit scenario #2. I have had quite a few different scopes over the years (Dobs, Maks, SCTs, eq-mounted Newts, APO and achro refractors), but I did go from:

 

Meade 2120 LX6 Premier 10" SCT (later mounted on an LXD75 GOTO mount)...

 

to Explore Scientific ED-102 APO 4" refractor...

 

and then back to a Meade 2080 LX6 Premier 8" SCT.

 

Currently I still have (and love using) my Meade 2080, and my secondary (grab 'n' go) scope is a 70mm f/10 refractor.

 

If pressed while consuming a barley beverage, I'd probably classify myself as an "SCT guy". :)

 

Cheers!

Rick




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