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Skywatcher GoTo Dobsonian?

beginner dob reflector accessories equipment
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#1 DanielG8686

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 05:37 PM

Was hoping to get some feedback on the Sky-Watcher 8" Flextube SynScan GoTo Collapsible Dobsonian.. It looks like a good buy to me so far. What are everyone’s thoughts?I will be transporting the telescope to viewing sites.. Will I have to collimate everytime I move this thing? What kind of light shroud do you recommend?? The astrozap one seems bulky and overpriced.. Id like something sleeker like what Orion makes for their big truss rod dobsonians Thanks in advance!!

Edited by DanielG8686, 09 July 2020 - 12:09 AM.


#2 junomike

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 05:44 PM

Great portable telescope

Requires a little learning curve.

Requires a Shroud (AstroZap).

 

Consider the 10" version if possible. 



#3 DanielG8686

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:07 PM

Besides seeing more in the sky why do you recommend the 10”? When i transport this telescope to my viewing sites will i have to collimate everytime? I plan on building a padded case for it. Thanks

#4 n2dpsky

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:23 PM

I have a 10" Flex-Tube (non-goto) and it's been a fine telescope.  Nice optics.  Good mechanics, except for the bearings.  I don't know what they use, but it's not Teflon.  I upgraded mine.   I suspect the GOTO version uses different bearings than the push-to version. Other than that, I've had no complaints.  I did add a light shroud, cooling fan, and counterweights and it's a very fun telescope to use.   


Edited by n2dpsky, 08 July 2020 - 06:23 PM.


#5 stargazer193857

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:27 PM

I read some people say these scopes don't need to be collimated each time, and others say they do. Maybe the key is just pulling it all the way out each time before tightening it.

As for go-to, besides being able to see more stuff, the benefit is it staying on target whole you sketch or look or let a line of people look.

Downside is weight, complexity, and cost. Also a bit taller, if that is good or bad.
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#6 Bean614

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:28 PM

It's quite a nice scope, and I've had the 8 and 12 from Orion, and the 10 from Skywatcher (all 3 are basically identical since they are Synta scopes, with SynScan Operating systems. ).

  The 8 you like is excellent!  BUT.... you seem very concerned about collimation.  Though a tad less important in the 8 than in the larger scopes,  it IS very important,  since ONLY with a well collimated scope can you get the best from your optics!

If you buy a Newtonian,  Dob or Tripod mount, you WILL have to learn to collimate it. Once you learn, it's just 2 or 3 minutes each time you go out.  If you don't wish to learn to collimate,  you should really be looking at another scope design.  And, even SCT'S and Maks have to be collimated.

Good luck with your choice! 



#7 N3p

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:29 PM

To me the 8" seems like a reasonable choice also. I still consider my 8" as a lifetime instrument after 4 years or so. Plus, the 8" is F6 which is a good thing, with tracking.

 

I think it would be a wise choice.



#8 S.Boerner

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 06:31 PM

You probably won't have to collimate every time but it wouldn't hurt and does give you something to do while it gets dark.  A laser collimator makes it easy and they aren't expensive.

 

If your vehicle is small look into the size of the base before you buy.  I've got the 12" inch which is much larger, but it certainly wouldn't fit through the door into the back seat of my Camry.



#9 DanielG8686

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 10:31 PM

Can I use a TalentCell Rechargeable 12V 6000mAh DC Output Lithium Ion Battery Pack to power this bad boy? It seems to have good reviews on Amazon. I like the sounds of it because its small and lightweight and I should be able to just velcro it to the base arm to prevent chord wrap. What kind of light shroud do you recommend?? The astrozap one seems bulky and overpriced.. Id like something sleeker like what Orion makes for their big truss rod dobs. How hard is it to adjust the scope on its axis manually? Ive heard that it doesnt move well when manually moved.

Edited by DanielG8686, 09 July 2020 - 03:08 AM.


#10 stargazer193857

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 11:21 PM

The reason for a collapsible vs a solid tube is if you want to bring friends or family in the back seat. If you are alone, get the solid tube. For the collapsible, account for the price of the shroud.


If you need to sell, 6"-10" is easiest to sell.

#11 DanielG8686

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Posted 08 July 2020 - 11:48 PM

The reason for a collapsible vs a solid tube is if you want to bring friends or family in the back seat. If you are alone, get the solid tube. For the collapsible, account for the price of the shroud.


If you need to sell, 6"-10" is easiest to sell.


They dont make a solid tube skywatcher goto Dobsonian do they?

Edited by DanielG8686, 08 July 2020 - 11:49 PM.


#12 eamos

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 12:43 PM

Skywatcher does not I don't believe, but Orion does and as others have mentioned it is the same SynScan system.



#13 SteveG

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 12:52 PM

Besides seeing more in the sky why do you recommend the 10”? When i transport this telescope to my viewing sites will i have to collimate everytime? I plan on building a padded case for it. Thanks

As others have noted, you will need to learn how to collimate it properly. It will be quick and simple once you thoroughly understand it. I suggest getting quality 2" collimating tools when you buy the scope, and don't use the cheap 1.25" lasers. A combo site-tube Cheshire in 2" by Astrosystems or Catseye will do everything you need.

 

It's a steel painted tube that can easily lay across your back seat. I think you might find a case cumbersome. I've never put my 10" dob in a case, and it still looks new after 15 years of use. YMMV.



#14 DanielG8686

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 12:58 PM

Hey everyone!! Can I use a TalentCell Rechargeable 12V 6000mAh DC Output Lithium Ion Battery Pack to power this bad boy? It seems to have good reviews on Amazon. I like the sounds of it because its small and lightweight and I should be able to just velcro it to the base arm to prevent chord wrap. What kind of light shroud do you recommend?? The astrozap one seems bulky and overpriced.. Id like something sleeker like what Orion makes for their big truss rod dobs. How hard is it to adjust the scope on its axis manually? Ive heard that it doesnt move well when manually moved. Thank you!!!

Edited by DanielG8686, 09 July 2020 - 12:58 PM.


#15 stargazer193857

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 02:01 PM

As others have noted, you will need to learn how to collimate it properly. It will be quick and simple once you thoroughly understand it. I suggest getting quality 2" collimating tools when you buy the scope, and don't use the cheap 1.25" lasers. A combo site-tube Cheshire in 2" by Astrosystems or Catseye will do everything you need.

It's a steel painted tube that can easily lay across your back seat. I think you might find a case cumbersome. I've never put my 10" dob in a case, and it still looks new after 15 years of use. YMMV.


My complaint about 1.25" $30 lasers is the beam is so wide. I wish they could get closer to a pinpoint. Also nice if the laser's collimation would not drift.

#16 eamos

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 02:34 PM

Hey everyone!! Can I use a TalentCell Rechargeable 12V 6000mAh DC Output Lithium Ion Battery Pack to power this bad boy? It seems to have good reviews on Amazon. I like the sounds of it because its small and lightweight and I should be able to just velcro it to the base arm to prevent chord wrap. 

Yes I have used that same exact battery with the orion 8in goto and it worked just fine.



#17 howardcano

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 04:32 PM

Was hoping to get some feedback on the Sky-Watcher 8" Flextube SynScan GoTo Collapsible Dobsonian.. It looks like a good buy to me so far. What are everyone’s thoughts?I will be transporting the telescope to viewing sites.. Will I have to collimate everytime I move this thing? What kind of light shroud do you recommend?? The astrozap one seems bulky and overpriced.. Id like something sleeker like what Orion makes for their big truss rod dobsonians Thanks in advance!!

My SW 8" Collapsible arrived with the go-to defective and a "meh" mirror that pooped out at about 1.5mm exit pupil.  Re-flashing the hand controller got it working.

 

The mount has vibration issues since the azimuth bearing is much narrower than the ground board.  The non-motorized mount doesn't have that problem.

 

There's a reason these things are cheap.



#18 DanielG8686

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 04:47 PM

My SW 8" Collapsible arrived with the go-to defective and a "meh" mirror that pooped out at about 1.5mm exit pupil. Re-flashing the hand controller got it working.

The mount has vibration issues since the azimuth bearing is much narrower than the ground board. The non-motorized mount doesn't have that problem.

There's a reason these things are cheap.


I have no idea what you’re talking about when you say the mirror “pooped” out at so and so exit pupil. Why do people rave about these telescopes if you think they’re so “cheap”? Just wondering.

#19 DanielG8686

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 05:14 PM

It doesn’t matter anyways.. I contacted Skywatcher USA and they say the soonest they will get any in from China is September or October. And no retailers have one in stock. Im not waiting that long.

#20 Glory Eye

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 06:37 PM

It doesn’t matter anyways.. I contacted Skywatcher USA and they say the soonest they will get any in from China is September or October. And no retailers have one in stock. Im not waiting that long.

Hopefully I can encourage you not to let the fact that truss dobs have to be collimated prevent you from considering one. I had trouble with collimation at first but after I did away with the allen set screws and ordered "Bob's Knobs" collimation made perfect sense and became a breeze. My advice would be to get Bob's Knobs after which you will quickly see the relationship between turning one of the three screws and the movement of the mirror. As far as telescopes go, I have never owned a Skywatcher, but I love my Orion xx16G. If their 8" scopes are of equivalent quality, I don't think you would be disappointed. By the way, if you don't know already, Bob's Knob's are screws with heads on them that allow you to adjust the secondary mirror with your fingers rather than the allen wrench. http://bobsknobs.com/



#21 howardcano

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Posted 10 July 2020 - 12:42 PM

I have no idea what you’re talking about when you say the mirror “pooped” out at so and so exit pupil. Why do people rave about these telescopes if you think they’re so “cheap”? Just wondering.

This means the mirror was far from 1/4 wave PV wavefront.  In other words, images where not sharp at magnifications greater than about 100X.

 

Many people do get nice mirrors in the Skywatchers.  Many also don't.  It's luck of the draw.  That's part of why they are cheap.


Edited by howardcano, 10 July 2020 - 12:45 PM.


#22 GeneT

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Posted 10 July 2020 - 01:09 PM

Besides seeing more in the sky why do you recommend the 10”? When i transport this telescope to my viewing sites will i have to collimate everytime? I plan on building a padded case for it. Thanks

A 10 is a nice size, as is a 12. Collimation is quite easy once you get a little practice. Get a Glatter barlowed laser with TuBlug. Extremely accurate and very easy to uee.



#23 junomike

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Posted 10 July 2020 - 04:28 PM

I like mine enough that although I origially bought it for the Base (for my AT 12" F4 OTA) I ended up liking it enough to use it as is.....




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