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Suggestions for Orion 102 F/7 ED refractor

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#1 slackline

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 01:22 AM

Hi.

 

I have an 8" SCT, portable pier, Atlas mount, camera adapters, software, cables, and all sorts of doohickeys to attach.  The problem is that it is such a process to set everything up.

 

I also have an Orion 102 ED that I only used once (I think).  Sorry, it has been so long since I have set everything up (or even the scope).  I think I bought the 102 as a guide scope and potentially a portable/viewing/photo scope.

 

But-

 

I would like to use the Orion as a terrestrial scope with the ability to do some night time observing.  This would be for vacations near the beach.  I can see out on the ocean and we look for whales, boats, etc.  My bino's are so-so and I would like to put the Orion up on an Alt/az mount.

 

I am going to get a 45* erect image diagonal for daytime use.  For ease of use, I would also like to get a zoom eyepiece.  This is all for day use when my kids (teens) might want to look through it.  I am also trying to get them to look at something besides screens.  I see different ( but similar) eyepieces.  i.e.  8-24, 6.5-21, etc.  Any recommendations?  I prefer to spend under $100 for this one.

 

Now, for night time, I have a Dielectric mirror diagonal with 2" eyepieces.  Can I get a couple of recommendations for the moon and brighter objects?  I bought some eyepieces for my SCT without knowing what I was doing (nor asking questions) and ended up with some mistakes.

 

Not sure what else I will be able to see from the coast.  Lots of atmosphere to look through and water vapor I assume...

 

 

Recap:

Zoom opinions?

2" eyepiece opinions for lunar/planetary?

714mm focal length F/7.

 

Thanks.

 

Rob



#2 clearwaterdave

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 02:04 AM

Hello Rob.,welcome.,I have the Meade zoom and have been very happy with it.,as for lunar and planetary ep's.,2"ep's are generally lower power.,you can get adapters to use 1.25"ep's for higher power ep's.,I like ES eyepieces.,68* or 82* .,For that scope a 5 or 6mm ep would show lots.,good luck



#3 sg6

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 02:31 AM

Personally I have avoided zooms. Equally when I started zooms were a joke, old beliefs die hard it seems.

 

My eyepiece selection is often related to targets. Those planets being the obvious ones every year.

Jupiter is OK at 60x to 80x, Saturn needs 120x area, Mars I suggest you forget or use the SCT.

So Jupiter a 10mm is good for Jupiter, Saturn means around a 6 to 7mm.

If you wanted to travel light take an 8mm for both, should do both.

 

Wider fields and objects is easy one around 12mm to 15mm and a wide 25mm. I have assumed all to be 60 degree eyepieces, or in that area. Paradigm's, X-Cel's, HD's, ES 62's etc.

 

For a 1 degree target you want a field of around 2 degrees to frame and that in a 60 degree EP is 30x. A 25mm 60 degree gives about that. Does mean that M45 will possibly not fit the view in one go. Very close.The 24mm 68 degree may be required for 2.25 degree field. Would suggest worth getting as "The wide EP" anyway. At least then you have it whatever the target.



#4 Tony Flanders

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 05:52 AM

A 102-mm scope is somewhat overpowered as a terrestrial spotter -- but will work nonetheless.

A 45-degree erect-image diagonal is a great idea, though the regular 2-inch star diagonal should be fine too, as long as you don't mind the mirror-reversed image.

The obvious zoom to buy in the under-100 price range is the Celestron 8-24, a very good performer, especially for the price. But it would also be nice to have something that provides a wider field of view at lower magnification. 700/24 = 29X is too much magnification for many, perhaps most, terrestrial purposes.

What eyepieces do you already own for your 8-inch SCT? There's no reason not to use them.
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#5 SeattleScott

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 09:07 AM

I used to use 180x regularly on planets and Moon with my 4” Orion Apo. So I would look at more like 4-5mm. Morpheus 4.5mm comes to mind if it must be 2”, or the 4.7mm Ethos for much more money. Neither are generally considered top flight planetary eyepieces but they are 2”. Or you can get a real planetary eyepiece like the Nagler 3-6mm Zoom but it is 1.25”. Personally my planetary ones are 7mm type 1 Nagler, 5mm Tak LE and 3.4 Vixen HR. All outstanding on planets, and all 1.25”. The Vixen might be a bit much power for your scope, although it would match the highest rated magnification and I use it with my 4” refractors, so it might be fine. But the Nagler Zoom would cover the whole planetary range for you.

Scott

#6 Tony Flanders

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 10:56 AM

Oh, by the way, I tend to think of "planetary eyepiece" and "2-inch" as a contradiction in terms. That's not entirely fair -- there are in fact a handful of short-focal-length eyepieces that come only in 2-inch barrels, and a fair number more that fit in both 1.25-inch and 2-inch focusers. But most people use 1.25-inch eyepieces to achieve high magnifications, since there's little benefit to the 2-inch format in short focal lengths. Any 1.25-inch eyepiece can be used in a 2-inch focuser with the aid of an adapter. All 2-inch focusers that I have ever used are sold with 1.25-inch adapters, in fact.

 

The Moon is a somewhat different question. Although serious lunar observers use mostly high magnifications, fitting only a small piece of the Moon in the field of view, it's also nice to have an eyepiece with a true field of view around 40 arcminutes that will fit the entire Moon in the field of view with a bit of sky around to frame it. In a long-focal-length scope like an SCT, that may well require a 2-inch barrel.



#7 vtornado

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 12:12 PM

Hello Slackline and welcome to the forum.

 

This would be for vacations near the beach. ... for day use when my kids (teens) might want to look through it ...

 

To me this spells "Danger Will  Robinson"  Sand is really bad for optics and mechanicals, and kids are generally careless.

So,   I would probably get something like this.

https://www.meade.co...-refractor.html

 

I have an older orion ST80 that I put on a celestron heavy duty alt-az mount as my beach scope.

The 45 degree diagonal is a good choice for terrestrial.  I also use the celestron zoom and a 32mm plossl.

This mount leaves a bit to be desired as a astro mount because it can back flip if the tube is near straight up.

But works well when pointed more horizonatally.  I also have mine loosen from time to time and have

a small wrench to tighten it in my tool kit.

 

2 inch eyepiece for the moon?   I normally think of the moon as a high power narrow field target. 

I would probably shop for a 10mm 1.25 inch eyepiece.  Your scope is f/10 so it is easy on eyepieces, one of the expanse clones

would probably work very nicely.  Also the astro-tec paragigm eyepieces.  8 or 12mm?


Edited by vtornado, 27 May 2020 - 12:13 PM.


#8 slackline

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 02:11 PM

Thank you, all.

 

That is a lot of great information and exactly what I was looking for.  I'll post my current selection of eyepieces tonight.  

 

I understand that this is very much overkill for the terrestrial view, but I already have it sitting in a closet.

 

vtornado:  my SCT is F/10, my refractor is F/7.

Lol.  And, as far as the sand goes, this will be in the room shooting out the window/door looking terrestrial.  It won't go near the beach itself.  Or, in the driveway/parking area for the night view.

 

I am not counting on much for night time and will stick to bright objects.  Perhaps I will be pleasantly surprised.

 

I do have a camera type tripod with a ball type mount that I can lock down and still get the left/right rotation movement.  It has a 33lb load rating but it is pretty wonky with that scope on it.  I may need to get a purpose built tripod.  It would be nice if there was one that I could adjust the mount to be alt/az and lay it over to be an EQ.  Is there such an animal?

 

Rob



#9 SteveG

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 02:15 PM

Thank you, all.

 

 

It would be nice if there was one that I could adjust the mount to be alt/az and lay it over to be an EQ.  Is there such an animal?

 

Rob

There are many small EQ mounts that can be set up as alt/az. I would ask this very question in the mounts forum for more replies.



#10 slackline

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 03:32 PM

There are many small EQ mounts that can be set up as alt/az. I would ask this very question in the mounts forum for more replies.

Will do.

 

Thank you.



#11 slackline

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 07:03 PM

Current lineup:

1.25

University Optics 6mm multi coated (Japan) 

Orion 12.5mm Plossl (illuminated reticle)

TeleVue 15mm Plossl

Orion 10mm Ultrascopic

Meade MA 9mm

Meade MA 25mm

(I think the Meade's came with an ETX60AT that I never use)

 

2"

Orion Q70 26mm

 

 

 

So, I think I will get a zoom and erecting diagonal for terrestrial.  After using my current eyepieces for astro viewing I will see if I need any others.  If my University Optics is not up to par, I will look at the Tak 5mm or others in that range.

 

I have adapters for 1.25.  

 

Thanks again.

 

Rob



#12 slackline

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 07:18 PM

Also, I just ordered the SkyWatcher AZ-GTi mount.  Not EQ, but I am not going to use this for photo work.

 

Rob



#13 clearwaterdave

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Posted 27 May 2020 - 08:02 PM

I like the Meade zoom and William Optic correct image diagonal for my bird scope.,the helical focuser helps a lot with higher power view in my 1.25" set up's.,good luck.,




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