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Are you content with your refractor?

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#1 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:32 AM

If not, then why do you find yourself continually switching or changing OTA's and even in some cases going back to the same exact model once, twice, three times again? Is it because you are bored with your current model? Is it finances? Is it cosmetics? Is it because you are getting in or out of imaging? Are you addicted to flipping OTA's? Is it because you don't like your sample? Are you simply addicted to change? Is it because you are overwhelmed with the choices and can't resist change? Is it because you are always in doubt about the choices you made? Is it the weight? Is it the glass type? Are you searching for the holy grail? Is it because you can only afford one refractor? Is it because of FPL53? Is it portability? Is it because of a dust mote? Are you OCD? Is it because you are getting out of the hobby? Is it because you have decided on some sort of reflector instead? Something else?


Edited by Daniel Mounsey, 07 December 2019 - 10:20 AM.

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#2 zakry3323

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:38 AM

It's a problem I would love to have :)

 

I'm going to stick with my 80mm and 100mm for now. The next ota upgrade will likely max out with seeing conditions around here, something with a flat field and 1000-1500mm FL...and it might not be a refractor :)



#3 Jeff Lee

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:39 AM

Nope, I have the lowly ES102 triplet and a ST80. They both get the job done, as do my other scopes. Scopes are nothing more than tools, much like an artist's brush that paint the universe for me. If I am unhappy its due to my skill set not the tools I use.


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#4 wrvond

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:39 AM

I would like a 6” or larger, but 120mm is the largest practical size for me. I’m content with that.
Overall, I am very happy with my Sky-Watcher and don’t anticipate changing.


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#5 Esso2112

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:40 AM

Part of it is that refractors are like prime focus camera lenses.  You need different focal lengths to image different objects at the correct framing. 


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#6 ascii

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:42 AM

I have a Sky-Watcher ProED 100 mm and an Astro-Tech AT60ED 60 mm (looking to make a backpack kit with this one), and I am quite pleased with both.


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#7 HydrogenAlpha

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:45 AM

I'd say I'm guilty of changing OTAs somewhat frequently. 

 

I'm content with my current OTA, but in the past years I have been switching out my main OTAs once a year on average. I identify with some of the reasons you gave. 

 

I guess the main reason is cost. While I can technically buy several telescopes if I sold the one I have now, I tend to go for quality over quantity. As I could afford better equipment, I sell the one I currently have and upgrade. For the most part, I only own one telescope at any point in time. 

 

Just earlier this week, I decided to order another telescope without selling the one I currently own. And the reason is portability. Like most people, having both a big setup for when you have the logistics and time to move it is great, but I also want a grab and go. 

 

To a lesser extent, I like switching things up for the sake of it (yes I admit we millennials have a short attention span). 

 

I've always been doing imaging exclusively, so moving and and out of imaging doesn't apply to me. 

 

P.S. I happened to chance on your takahashi videos on youtube recently


Edited by HydrogenAlpha, 07 December 2019 - 09:46 AM.

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#8 erin

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:50 AM

Daniel, I think you covered every possibility! For me it was a holy grail search after realizing that an achro just didn’t cut it for me. Started with a 90mm f6.7 achro, then a vintage 80 f11 achro with great glass, 100 f10, 100mm f6, Vixen ed103, AT102, and then finally the SV Access.

 

I learned a lot about what I prefer on the way:

 

-for my skies, 90 mm is minimum aperture

-shorter tubes. The Vixen was too bulky for my liking and for the mount. Otherwise an outstanding scope! Gave me a taste for fpl53

-Dual speed focusers make all the difference in the world when you have a vibration-prone mount 

-I love 2 eyed viewing so use a binoviewer whenever possible

-this hobby is truly a money pit. I have come a long way from “a simple refractor will be enough”. Nope!

-it is all worth it!

 

Fun topic! waytogo.gif


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#9 Astrola72

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 09:58 AM

Yeah, I'm happy with my refractors. Sorry, won't be buying any more. Unless I move to better seeing.

 

Joe


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#10 mich_al

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:06 AM

All except the focuser (Tak 100DL).  I've done the adjustments and it's still cheezy.  Looked at replacements that are all too expensive and often don't solve the problem.  Tak's weak point!


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#11 Jond105

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:08 AM

I’m on my 3rd 100ED, not because I wanted another one per se. Christmas was coming up, so I had to sell my dream scope for some extra cash. When I receive my bonus in two weeks I’ll probably buy it again. The 100ED is getting me by until then, though this one was special as it was a gift from my wife with the help in funding it for feeling bad I had sold the 120 without telling her. I’m addicted to FPL-53 glass now and it’s hard to ever get anything else as I know what it means for views.
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#12 sg6

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:10 AM

Happy with my collection, the Skywatcher 72ED needs a better focuser I suppose but the optics are fair.

Do I change, well no. I buy another and add to the collection lol.gif .

Have you not noticed that Refractor people add another one, it is the Reflector people that seem to sell for a bigger one.

 

Would one day like a 132 WO, but that is for later.



#13 Ishtim

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:13 AM

I am content with my refractor. 

 

After years of reflectors, I bought a TOA130 with all the "fixins" form Woodland Hills, and after I learned what/how I needed to configure it for a given camera, it's my goto scope.  


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#14 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:13 AM

Daniel:

 

I am constantly changing my refractors so they match my wardrobe.  I just got a new suit (see below, shield your eyes)  I need to find a scope that is a good match.  waytogo.gif

 

The important issues out of the way... 

 

I am generally content with my refractors.  I am not quick to buy and when I find one that suits my needs, I keep it.   I've had my 80mm WO Megrez II FD for about 15 years, I have had my NP-101 for about 10 years.  The AT-80LE is a recent, probably 4 years ago.  

 

The one good quality scope that I have bought and sold and bought again is the Orion 120mm Eon.  I bought my first one about 5 years ago as a backyard refractor with more zoot than the NP-101 on the planets and double stars. It did the job very well but it was in competition with my 10 inch Dob for that role.  The Eon was handier and had far fewer thermal issues but the Dob split the tighter doubles and the better planetary, when everything was right.  It just seemed like I wasn't using the Eon, I needed shelf space.  I sold it.  It took a while several starts and stops but finally I found a serious buyer who has been very happy with the scope. 

 

But soon enough I started to regret having sold it.  That never happens to me, but it did this time. It was there in the back of my mind... For the backyard stuff, the Eon really is the right refractor..  So then, earlier this years, there was some scope swapping between a couple of CN mods/admins and ex's that resulted in a surplus 120mm Eon needing a new home.  

 

So that new home was me.. This time, I'm keeping it. 

 

The new Eon: 

 

Eon Number 2 Backyard 1.jpg
 
The New Suit:
 
New suit.jpg
 
What do you think?  A good match?  smile.gif
 
(When my 12 year old grandson saw that picture, someone said, 
 
"Not many can pull off wearing a suit like that but Jon can."
 
The grandson said:
 
"Yes, Grampa Jon can pull it off and he should pull it off."
 
I thought to myself, man, that is a perfect comeback.. I would have been proud of it myself.)
 
Jon

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#15 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:19 AM

I’m on my 3rd 100ED, not because I wanted another one per se. Christmas was coming up, so I had to sell my dream scope for some extra cash. When I receive my bonus in two weeks I’ll probably buy it again. The 100ED is getting me by until then, though this one was special as it was a gift from my wife with the help in funding it for feeling bad I had sold the 120 without telling her. I’m addicted to FPL-53 glass now and it’s hard to ever get anything else as I know what it means for views.

lol.gif I was gonna ask if it's because you are addicted to FPL53. I'll add that too. I did;t think anyone would mention it. Thanks waytogo.gif


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#16 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:22 AM

 

Daniel:

 

I am constantly changing my refractors so they match my wardrobe.  I just got a new suit (see below, shield your eyes)  I need to find a scope that is a good match.  waytogo.gif

 

The important issues out of the way... 

 

I am generally content with my refractors.  I am not quick to buy and when I find one that suits my needs, I keep it.   I've had my 80mm WO Megrez II FD for about 15 years, I have had my NP-101 for about 10 years.  The AT-80LE is a recent, probably 4 years ago.  

 

The one good quality scope that I have bought and sold and bought again is the Orion 120mm Eon.  I bought my first one about 5 years ago as a backyard refractor with more zoot than the NP-101 on the planets and double stars. It did the job very well but it was in competition with my 10 inch Dob for that role.  The Eon was handier and had far fewer thermal issues but the Dob split the tighter doubles and the better planetary, when everything was right.  It just seemed like I wasn't using the Eon, I needed shelf space.  I sold it.  It took a while several starts and stops but finally I found a serious buyer who has been very happy with the scope. 

 

But soon enough I started to regret having sold it.  That never happens to me, but it did this time. It was there in the back of my mind... For the backyard stuff, the Eon really is the right refractor..  So then, earlier this years, there was some scope swapping between a couple of CN mods/admins and ex's that resulted in a surplus 120mm Eon needing a new home.  

 

So that new home was me.. This time, I'm keeping it. 

 

The new Eon: 

 

 
 
The New Suit:
 
 
What do you think?  A good match?  smile.gif
 
(When my 12 year old grandson saw that picture, someone said, 
 
"Not many can pull off wearing a suit like that but Jon can."
 
The grandson said:
 
"Yes, Grampa Jon can pull it off and he should pull it off."
 
I thought to myself, now that kid has a great sense of humor.. 
 
Jon

 

rofl2.gif  You often give me a good laugh Jon. I think you deserve some sort of CN trophy for best sense of humor. It's great to have enough experience and wisdom to laugh at all the things we bicker over. 


Edited by Daniel Mounsey, 07 December 2019 - 10:24 AM.

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#17 jag767

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:22 AM

I think sometimes initially when getting into a new size category, it may take a couple of tries to get what makes you happy. I tend to stick to what I have for a few years, then if something tickles my fancy, maybe grab it and see what does the job better. Loser goes to a new home.
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#18 PirateMike

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:24 AM

Am I content with my refractor?

 

No. So Daniel, why don't you send me a 140mm or bigger to try out for a few months? If I like it I will consider purchasing it. smile.gif

 

 

Miguel   8-)

 

.


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#19 russell23

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:25 AM

Jon,

 

That suit is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!
 

Dave


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#20 Gipht

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:32 AM

Well if they come up with a refractor with a 300mm focal length and a 127mm aperture,  I am in!  Always looking for the next big deal here, but not into small changes.   As Jeff Lee said these are tools, and getting the most out of your tools is half the fun.


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#21 Daniel Mounsey

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:33 AM

Jon,

 

That suit is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!
 

Dave

Love’n the suit that’s freaking hysterical.  



#22 Agatha

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:34 AM

I'm content with all of my refractors.  I am guilty of loving to look at them almost as much as I love looking through them.  Yup.    grin.gif


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#23 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:34 AM

I think sometimes initially when getting into a new size category, it may take a couple of tries to get what makes you happy. I tend to stick to what I have for a few years, then if something tickles my fancy, maybe grab it and see what does the job better. Loser goes to a new home.

 

That has been how it was for me.

 

When the ED-80 came out, I bought one from a friend and I had it for a year or so, I liked it, very good optically.  Then the Megrez 80 FD showed up on craigslist for $425 with a 2 inch diagonal and it was the right combination, optics very similar to the ED-80 but with a much nicer build.  It's a keeper.

 

I was interested in a 4 inch ED and when the Astro-Tech AT-102ED was announced, I was really excited, I wanted the shorter focal length and it was in my price range.  The first AT-102ED showed up in the US, Tom Trusock was too busy to review it so I got the chance.  I later bought the scope.  After 2 years, I'd had so much fun with it that I decided to treat myself to a used NP-101.

 

Jon


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#24 Bomber Bob

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:37 AM

Daniel, I'd have to re-phrase your question to:  Are you content with your refractors?   I'm blessed with too many.  I'm gonna be shedding some, but with our South Seattle cloudy weather, even if got down to a half-dozen, giving each one its fair share of use would be tough, as I have some great reflectors, too.

 

Since I joined CN, my line-up has changed a lot.  Big part of that was looking for the best combinations of performance per aperture; and, assessing the new (to me - an Old Guy) technologies, like ED optics.  The dust is settling, but it ain't there yet.  I do foresee 3 Categories:  Mostly Display, Routinely Used, & Occasionally Used.  For just my refractors, I have 4 Displays, 6 Workhorses, & 2 Occasional.

 

I think my Workhorses are appropriate for this thread, and I'm happy with them:  2 small fluorites, a 100mm F7 ED, a 100mm F10 achro, and my 100mm & 130mm F5 RFTs.  I could shed 2 of these, and still be in good shape for a variety of observing -- it's choosing those 2 that's tough!

 

For example, I have 2 -- count'em Two -- pairs of 4" + 2" Duo-Scopes (pairs I use together).

 

The Vintage Achromatic Duo -- Dakin 4" F10 + Yamamoto 60mm F7:

 

Dakin 4 - Restore S07.jpg

 

The new APO Duo -- AT102ED + Tak FC-50:

 

AT102ED S23 (AR-1 & FC-50).jpg

 

Views through these duos are great -- given their apertures & glasses -- but the Vintage weighs 2x the APO.  Should be easy to part with the Vintage, but it ain't.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 07 December 2019 - 10:46 AM.

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#25 SeaBee1

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 10:38 AM

Well Daniel, for me, it's kinda like this... I'm not the typical refractor guy that generally posts here... not looking for a Tak or Vixen for the ultimate end game nirvana... I know zip about exotic glass, don't even know what glass is in my SW120ED... and don't actually care... popcorn.gif

 

I started with a Celestron Omni102 XLT, which I enjoyed immensely. I still have it, but currently retired to the shelf until I can find a new home or purpose for it. Eventually, it became apparent my old eyes needed a bit more aperture, and I had been using the 4 inch enough that I felt the SW120ED would be the right amount of aperture with enough quality I could appreciate. It was a home run for me. I am always looking forward to my next observing opportunity with it. Pretty sure it will be my last refractor purchase. It does everything I expect from it. Any lack is totally attributable to my own shortcomings.

 

Content? Why, yes I am... totally...

 

Keep looking up!

 

CB


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