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Choices, choices....

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#1 Augustus

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 09:53 AM

I'm debating whether to bring my orange C8 or my 12" truss Dob to a public night at the local (former) observatory, Bortle 5 site. The other scopes there will be a 4" refractor, one C8, a C8 or a 10" Dob, and a 14" GoTo truss Dob. Which of the two scopes should I bring? There will be at least a few dozen people.


Edited by Augustus, 26 July 2019 - 11:25 AM.


#2 Taosmath

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 10:32 AM

If the C8 has tracking - or at least a wedge & clock drive - I'd take that.  First time out, most people find it almost impossible to nudge a Dob.  Don't know why.  Also take a small step stool for Kids to stand on and a Focal reducer (if you have one) and your longest Focal length eyepieces, or at least those easiest to see through (largest Ep, most eye relief).

 

I have had people who cannot put their eye in the right spot to observe, so the brightest image which is easiest to find is very important.  After they've seen it, you can boost the magnification if the target merits it.  Also start with the largest brightest objects (moon, Jupiter, Saturn), Albireo , Mizar etc. before you work your way into the faint fuzzies.  After they've seen a few things some will be satisfied & leave & others will start to get the hang of eye placement and be prepared to hunt around until they see the target.


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#3 Jeff Struve

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 11:05 AM

Id take the manual dob... there is already a C8... and a manual dob would be good for them to see as opposed to the goto and tracking mounts.



#4 ShaulaB

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 11:15 AM

With either scope, have a ladder available. This is not just for small kids. When the uninitiated take their first look through a telescope, 90% of the time they will grab the eyepiece. Having a ladder at the scope gives you the opportunity to say "Please hold onto the ladder, not the eyepiece." Older people who are unsteady on their feet in the dark would appreciate having something to hold.

 

This is the ladder I use at outreach events for any telescope that I use. https://www.target.c...cB&gclsrc=aw.ds


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#5 Greyhaven

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Posted 26 July 2019 - 07:04 PM

With either scope, have a ladder available. This is not just for small kids. When the uninitiated take their first look through a telescope, 90% of the time they will grab the eyepiece. Having a ladder at the scope gives you the opportunity to say "Please hold onto the ladder, not the eyepiece." Older people who are unsteady on their feet in the dark would appreciate having something to hold.

 

This is the ladder I use at outreach events for any telescope that I use. https://www.target.c...cB&gclsrc=aw.ds

My first reaction to supplying a ladder and making it available is, darkness- age related balance issues- law suits. Wasn't there a thread recently  on liability issues.

Grey

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#6 Stevegeo

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Posted 27 July 2019 - 06:20 AM

i took my c8 last nite to a state park outreach ..i find that if the scope is low enough the kids really enjoy looking. the adults can get on their knees in the grass ( or bring a small rug) .for a peek ..start with brightest first as stated .. and lastly advice .being skeeter season .. bug spray!!

#7 Pharquart

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Posted 29 July 2019 - 12:43 PM

With my C8 on a Nexstar Alt-Az mount, I rotate the diagonal in the visual back so the eyepiece is either horizontal or even angling downward (with set screw nice and tight to prevent the eyepiece from falling out) to accommodate the shorter folks in the crowd.  I use a step stool, similar to the one linked above, for my 10" Dob when the eyepiece is too high for short people.

 

Brian


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#8 44ye

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Posted 29 July 2019 - 03:47 PM

If you can not set up right out of your vehicle ,which is easier to take down at 1:00 o'clock ?. Setting up before sunset is easy when you are fresh . Tear down after 4 hrs. and hauling back ( if necessary ) to the car with several trips  becomes" issue even with a wagon. 

Don



#9 tchandler

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 01:12 AM

The sky conditions will play a part too. Not to mention how much hardware you feel like schlepping.

 

It also depends on what targets you’d like to look at. Bortle 5 skies are rather meh - not terrible, but not terrific either. If skies are transparent then I would like to see faint, extended objects, which are good with the larger dob. If transparency is meh, but seeing is not bad, then maybe I’d opt for the focal length of a C8.

 

Truth be told, the most important piece of equipment there will be you. 



#10 whizbang

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 07:09 AM

The lightest one to carry or quickest one to set up.

 

Tracking helps.



#11 Voyageur

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 03:57 PM

Without a doubt, the C8. And a step stool with a handle. Not a ladder, a two-step stool with a grab bar across the top.

 

Yes, the Dob would provide a nice complement to the scopes already scheduled, but it is not nearly as practical as the C8. If the crowd is at all large, you will have people lined up for a look, and you will be VERY grateful for tracking. Most people are hopeless at nudging a manual scope, even if you carefully explain what to do. You will have much more control over the whole thing with the C8.



#12 Pharquart

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 08:38 AM

If the crowd is at all large, you will have people lined up for a look, and you will be VERY grateful for tracking. Most people are hopeless at nudging a manual scope, even if you carefully explain what to do.

I use a 10" Dob to look at the moon during any outreach session when it's visible.  My solution to a non-tracking telescope when I don't want to interrupt the line: I set my right-angle finder on the back side of the tube from the main eyepiece.  I can then stand on the back side and periodically nudge the tube using the finder to stay aligned on the moon.  I never have to look through the main eyepiece other than the original setup/focus.

 

That said, if you're looking at high magnification (planets), a tracking scope is REALLY nice.  I also use a C8 as well as a 4" refractor, both on tracking mounts, during my outreach.  Dob on the moon, others on Jupiter and Saturn.

 

Brian


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#13 aeajr

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Posted 16 August 2019 - 10:44 AM

I'm debating whether to bring my orange C8 or my 12" truss Dob to a public night at the local (former) observatory, Bortle 5 site. The other scopes there will be a 4" refractor, one C8, a C8 or a 10" Dob, and a 14" GoTo truss Dob. Which of the two scopes should I bring? There will be at least a few dozen people.

Did this already happen?  What did you take and how did it work out?


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