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Any little Mak fans here?

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#151 fcathell

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 02:48 PM

I think Treadmarks may have a very valid point here. I have not been in the habit of using filters throughout my 40+ years of amateur astronomy. I never liked the artificial effect that color filters created despite perceived contrast improvement in some cases. I have also been delinquent in using my crossed polarizing filters. My eyes have always been light sensitive and I started wearing very dark sunglasses outdoors in my early 20s. Living in Arizona now makes it a must.  I am 71 now, and luckily my last eye exam several months ago showed no trace of cataracts. I do remember feeling that the glare produced by an 8" scope on Jupiter was a bit uncomfortable, but I don't remember ever trying a filter. I must admit that Saturn always looked good in the larger SCTs but Jupiter seemed to be the detail/contrast problem. I do remember decent views of Jupiter in a friend's C-5 but never thought about it seriously. I now use a 6" Mak for planetary and it has given me the best views of Jupiter I have ever had. Maybe I need to get another C-8 or C-9 and "dust off' my polarizing filters. I do agree with Bataleon w.r.t. Maks and the majority of DSOs, but planetary viewing, double stars, and carbon stars have been my interest for the past 10 years.

 

Thanks for the comments!

 

Frank

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#152 Bowlerhat

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 05:37 AM

Well said! The only point we differ on is your remark about “a magical portal to another word.” No telescope does that. It’s the mind-telescope connection that opens a portal to another world: not the eye-telescope connection.

 

At times, during public outreach sessions, I’ve come across a few people who had a rather ho-hum attitude after looking at outstanding views of Saturn or Jupiter. Their experience had nothing to do with the quality of my telescope or the quality of the views.  

Reminds me of a small star party I went to. It was a small party for viewing the moon, Jupiter and Saturn. One guy showed us some pics of the andromeda galaxy and some nebulae photos: those were great photos with lots of details that he took by himself. But people don't understand the process behind it and looking at as if it's a Hubble's photo; they just took a glance at it and move along.

 

I had people too looking at Jupiter for first time through my SCT only for them looked back to me: 'that's it?' hmm.gif 


Edited by Bowlerhat, 14 September 2019 - 05:51 AM.

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#153 fcathell

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 02:52 PM

Speaking of star party incidents (a little off topic but still interesting IMO) - Many years ago when I was part of the San Diego Astro Association, we set up for a public star party in Balboa Park.  It was a gorgeous night and Saturn was in excellent viewing position, so most of us had Saturn in our scopes.  I was using a 6" Newt at the time. I noticed after a while there was a commotion starting up where one lady was going around to each scope and starting to get angry and raise her voice. When she got near mine I was able to understand what her "problem" was. She was saying there is no way Saturn could look like that in "small" telescopes and you needed big observatory scopes to get views like this.  She accused us of "fraud" and said we had pictures or transparencies of Saturn inside the scopes to fool the public. She even demanded that one person take his scope apart so she could prove it (C-8 I think).  In fact he did remove the visual back, diagonal, and eyepiece and let her inspect them.  By this time it was actually getting amusing for a lot of people and the local news media, who were covering the event, became interested in this lady's ravings due to the drama. She was never convinced that the Saturn she was seeing in the scopes was real and that we were defrauding the public. All of this wound up on the local nightly news. Luckily, she was the only one convinced that it wasn't the "real" Saturn. We had a good laugh with most of the other attendees after she left (still arguing and grumbling about "fraud on the public").  I'll never forget that evening.

 

Frank

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#154 Joe1950

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 03:47 PM

​Today she’s probably a flat earther, Frank!  That’s bizarre.

 

Is that Rocky Balboa park?  Didn’t know he was popular out that way.  grin.gif


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#155 fcathell

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 04:41 PM

Well, I was about 30 years old then and she was probably about 50.  I'm 71 now, so unless she was lucky, she is probably in a FLAT position now, in the EARTH!

 

Frank


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#156 aneeg

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 05:16 PM

Returning to some observing use of the Maks, my ETX 105 is my favorite Mercury scope. In broad daylight it is fun to pick up this innermost planet with my stationary Goto mount.

 

Arne


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#157 fcathell

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 06:00 PM

Did Meade make many of the 105 Maks?  They seem kind of rare.  I have the SW 102 Mak which I use a lot.  It is just so easy to set up and use. It is my primary scope for finding carbon stars on an old Celestron GT mount.

 

FC



#158 Jaimo!

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 10:21 PM

Did Meade make many of the 105 Maks?  They seem kind of rare.  I have the SW 102 Mak which I use a lot.  It is just so easy to set up and use. It is my primary scope for finding carbon stars on an old Celestron GT mount.

 

FC

There was an ETX-105, but not nearly as popular as the ETX-90 or 125.  They also produced a less expensive version with a single arm...


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#159 cupton

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Posted 29 September 2019 - 06:22 PM

Took out my 127 Orion MAK after an astronomy break of a few years. Haven’t used it once since moving to western Pennsylvania 4 years ago. Last skies it saw was back in the Phoenix area and then SoCal before that. Sure are a lot of clouds here in western PA! Anyway, cleaned her up, ordered some new tripod legs from Orion that were broken and now am researching a right angle finder and possibly a diagonal. Can’t remember the diagonal being too bad but I also don’t remember it being plastic before (even though it is). Looking forward to some clear skies!
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#160 photoracer18

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Posted 30 September 2019 - 12:17 PM

I did that with my ETX90 for the last eclipse. It melted the secondary baffle off of center. frown.gif

Not possible if the filter was working properly and had no defects.



#161 photoracer18

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Posted 30 September 2019 - 12:27 PM

Speaking of star party incidents (a little off topic but still interesting IMO) - Many years ago when I was part of the San Diego Astro Association, we set up for a public star party in Balboa Park.  It was a gorgeous night and Saturn was in excellent viewing position, so most of us had Saturn in our scopes.  I was using a 6" Newt at the time. I noticed after a while there was a commotion starting up where one lady was going around to each scope and starting to get angry and raise her voice. When she got near mine I was able to understand what her "problem" was. She was saying there is no way Saturn could look like that in "small" telescopes and you needed big observatory scopes to get views like this.  She accused us of "fraud" and said we had pictures or transparencies of Saturn inside the scopes to fool the public. She even demanded that one person take his scope apart so she could prove it (C-8 I think).  In fact he did remove the visual back, diagonal, and eyepiece and let her inspect them.  By this time it was actually getting amusing for a lot of people and the local news media, who were covering the event, became interested in this lady's ravings due to the drama. She was never convinced that the Saturn she was seeing in the scopes was real and that we were defrauding the public. All of this wound up on the local nightly news. Luckily, she was the only one convinced that it wasn't the "real" Saturn. We had a good laugh with most of the other attendees after she left (still arguing and grumbling about "fraud on the public").  I'll never forget that evening.

 

Frank

Tucson  

I had a similar thing happen at a public star-party when observing Saturn with my TEC140ED. I just showed that person how the scope would not focus on anything closer than about 100 yards and when I moved the scope Saturn moved out of the field which it would not do if it was something inside the tube. I wondered if he might have been at another star-party where this came up. 



#162 mr_snout

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 12:40 AM

Excellent discussion. I just made a post on replacing my Evo 6 inch ota with a Make of the same size. After reading this, maybe less would actually be more. So, 102 or 127?

#163 Old Man

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Posted 10 October 2019 - 07:34 PM

 What is anyone,s opinion on the little Meade ETX 90 PE made a number of years ago, the one with the autostar and smart finder in the maroon color with the Orion Neb on the tube? 

  The reason I ask is I have a chance at one, all original, including tripod and not bad looking, a little dust on the outside from sitting unused. I have never had the chance of looking thru a Mak, so I am unsure of this. I can pick this up for around $200.00.

  What is your op.?

 

     Mike



#164 elwaine

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Posted 11 October 2019 - 09:35 AM

Mike, for $200, it’s hard to go wrong buying a 90mm ETX. Mine offered very pleasing views of planets and the Moon. Very easy to travel with, too. Just don’t expect much out of the mechanical components. 


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#165 elwaine

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Posted 11 October 2019 - 09:48 AM

Excellent discussion. I just made a post on replacing my Evo 6 inch ota with a Make of the same size. After reading this, maybe less would actually be more. So, 102 or 127?

Are you looking to optimize the ability to detect details and surface features, or ease of traveling with your Mak? A 102mm MCT makes for a very nice GnG and/or travel scope; but the laws of physics being what they are, you will never be able to see as much detail with a 102mm as you’ll be able to see through a 127mm Mak.

 

For that matter, a 127mm Mak may show a slightly more contrasty view than your 150mm SCT, but a 6” SCT (if well collimated) will edge out the 127mm Mak when it comes to detecting details. — I’ve owned and used Maks from 90mm to 203mm and SCTs from 125mm to 235mm, and that was my experience, anyway. 


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#166 mr_snout

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Posted 12 October 2019 - 12:34 PM

Started to think that the 127 is a good compromise in price and performance.. ..
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#167 pdxmoon

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Posted 12 October 2019 - 01:01 PM

Started to think that the 127 is a good compromise in price and performance.. ..

The Celestron SLT 127 package has been a winner for me as a lunar observer. Easy to align, tracks at a lunar rate, great views of the moon. I love that thing.


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#168 Mitrovarr

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Posted 12 October 2019 - 01:03 PM

Probably quite a lot of small mak fans here. The C90 thread is 98 pages long for a reason. lol.gif


Edited by Mitrovarr, 12 October 2019 - 01:03 PM.

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#169 Bowlerhat

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Posted 18 October 2019 - 06:09 PM

Started to think that the 127 is a good compromise in price and performance.. ..

 

Love mine, really easy to set up. Can't comment on 127mm mak since it's heavier I think.

 

I got the 0,63x focal reducer fitted in and it's really easy to keep track of objects with wide angle eyepieces.



#170 jaraxx

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Posted 26 October 2019 - 11:53 AM

All this discussion about competition between Maks and refractors….. I would offer cooperation as a alternative model.

 

I have a dual alt/az mount that accepts two scopes. One of those scopes is a 127 Orion Mak. As we all know from reading thru this post this scope has its strengths and weaknesses. The other side of the mount sports an ST80 - a scope with its own set of good and bad characteristics.

The refractor resides in a big set of 105mm rings so that the 127 Mak and the 80mm can point to the same target. On the Mak is a green laser, on the 80mm is a 8x50 finder. Point with the laser, move to the 8x50, then to the 80mm for the wide view and finally to the 127 for an “up close” look. The 80mm seldom goes above about 60X (usually lower); the 127 Mak has a Baader Mark IV zoom (usually without a Barlow but I have one if conditions support more than 200X). I travel with this set up a lot, using the refractor in the day and both scopes at night. (The 127 Mak was sold as a spotting scope but the utility of an f/12 with limited FOV spotting scope has escaped me…)

I also have an Orion 102 ED which I look at as a combination of these two scopes. It’s simpler in that there is only one easy scope to set up as opposed to two easy scopes to set up. But it’s not quite as good at high magnifications as the Mak and not quite as good at rich wide field as the St80. Another problem is stability - the 102 is longer than either of the other scopes, so its reaction to focus and wind is shakier. Also, in terms of travel the two small scopes and everything else except the tripod legs fit in a single bin and make it easy.

Everything in this dual scope system was bought used - I probably have about $600 in scopes, mount and tripod legs. At some point I might spend $2000 and only have one refractor that does both jobs well. Or I might swap the 127 Mak for a 180 Mak - about as high as I can go and still travel. But for now cooperation seems to get me further than anything else - at least anything else I can afford.


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#171 whizbang

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Posted 27 October 2019 - 07:24 PM

I love my Sky Watcher 127mm.  I use it on both the EVO and SE mounts.

 

It's a good grab n go or travel scope.  I prefer it over my C8 for double stars.  Collimation is sharp as a tack.



#172 fcathell

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 10:51 PM

I just "scored" this C90 Mak spotter off of Amazon where it was advertised as "minor blem on bottom, open/damaged box." I took a chance and got it for $130 shipped and the "new" ones were showing $165.00. Never found the "blem" nor any issues with the box on arrival.  They must have just grabbed a "clean" one and shipped it. Checked it out on Saturn and some double stars last night and it looks very good. Was able to catch Rhea and Dione without much trouble. It took a 6mm eyepiece (208X) without any image softness on Jup and Saturn. Collimation was dead on and no image shift with focus or backlash. I left the useless finder, 45* prism and "wilderness" backpack in the box. 

 

Frank


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#173 fcathell

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Posted 04 November 2019 - 10:53 PM

Whoops - forgot the pic!

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

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#174 Bowlerhat

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Posted 05 November 2019 - 01:48 AM

I saw a listing for for a used orion 90 goto MCT few days ago, 80USD for the whole package!

 

My 9mm redline just arrived yesterday, I'll tets it out on my skymax.


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#175 fcathell

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Posted 05 November 2019 - 08:49 AM

Bowlerhat - I assume by "redline" you mean the red striped versions of the Expanse clone eyepieces.  I have a couple of the black gold banded ones and 3 of the red banded ones.  I use 2 of the 15mm in my bino viewer for about 100X and they work great. Nice eyepieces for the price.  I like the red banded ones because of the easier grip, but internally the optics are identical to the blacks with gold bands. I recently have tried several of these and really like them.  I'm positive they are clones of the BST Flat Field or Lunt Solar lines.

 

Frank




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