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Orion 09007 SpaceProbe 130ST Equatorial Reflector Telescope

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#1 jiblet65

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 06:34 AM

So a lady a couple of hours away has this on craigslist for $275 and she has an Orion 8885 5mm Edge On Planetary EP ($99) listed with it but it's actually a 3mm. Would this be a decent purchase to go along with my little refractor scope? The world of reflectors would be a whole new realm so will there be collimation issues or any other concerns, headaches, joy, epiphanies with this model? Is $275 too much? I was thinking of offering $225. It looks brand new and she claims she got it for her husband and he never used it.

00h0h_2VASfSGXRss_0lM0t2_1200x900.jpg



#2 John Miele

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 08:28 AM

I would pass big time. But not solely because of the price. 

 

A 6" or 8" Dobsonian telescope would give you far more enjoyment for about the same price. Brighter views and a Dob mount is so easy to use.

 

That rather shaky looking manual equatorial mount will literally be a pain in your neck unless you constantly rotate the tube to keep the EP in a comfortable position for viewing. Since you are not doing any imaging (inferred) there is no need for the extra complexity of an equatorial mount at all. You will have to at least roughly polar align the mount and slewing by hand using RA-DEC motions is so much less intuitive than simple Alt-AZ motions. 

 

I would strongly suggest this if the budget is critical:

 

https://www.telescop...yCategoryId=398

 

Or this one if the budget can go up a little bit:

 

https://www.telescop...yCategoryId=398

 

cs...John



#3 macdonjh

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 08:29 AM

jiblet65,

 

A new Spaceprobe + Edge-On eye piece would be $410.  $275 for both is enough of a discount for me personally.

 

The 130mm Newtonian will provide a noticeable increase in light grasp over your refractors.  You'll be able to see more, especially if you can travel to a dark sky.  I think you'll be pleased with that.

 

As you said, you'll have to learn collimation.  It isn't hard, but it does take practice, and it's much easier to learn if you have someone who can teach you in person.  You'll also have to get used to putting your scope outside for a while before you want to observe to allow the mirrors to reach ambient temperature.

 

The weakest link in the package, in my opinion, is the EQ-2 mount.  The tripod is pretty weak and does not support the mount and scope well.  The mount itself is very basic, which is not inherently a bad thing.  At least they have provided a dovetail bar and tube rings.  The 4" Maksutov Santa brought as my family's first scope attached to the EQ-2 mount with a 1/4" screw and a photo tripod-type mounting pad.  No matter how much I tightened the screw, the scope always swiveled on the mount.

 

Larger Newtonians can be a pain when mounted on an equatorial mount.  The eye piece will often be in an uncomfortable orientation.  The classic solution is to have rotating rings of some kind (the scope you've pictured doesn't have those).  "Real" rotating rings are expensive, but you can get the same functionality by adding one more ring (you can buy a pair from Orion, not single rings).  The third ring gets installed between the focuser and the front mounting ring.  The two mounting rings are left loose to allow the scope to rotate.  The new third ring and the front ring slide against each other keeping the scope steady while you rotate it.  I've got an 8" Newtonian I use at the house with this set-up, it works well.

 

If you decide to buy the SpaceProbe, I think you'll be looking for a new mount soon anyway, so the deficiencies of the EQ-2 may not be that big a deal.  A small manual alt-az mount would be a good choice to the SpaceProbe.  Something like the Orion Versa-Go, or a Twilight mount...

 

John Miele makes valid points.  Dobsonians are definitely easier to observe with than an equatorially mounted Newtonian without rotating rings.  However, an Orion (or SkyWatcher, Explore Scientific, etc) 6" or 8" Dobsonian will be bulkier and take more room to store than the SpaceProbe.  If storage space is scarce in your house, you should consider that, too.  My son and I used an Orion 6" Dobsonian similar to the scope shown in the link John Miele provides.  We had a lot of fun with it, it's a good scope.  It took up a lot of space in his room, though, and wouldn't fit in his (admittedly tiny) closet.


Edited by macdonjh, 16 July 2020 - 08:38 AM.

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#4 jiblet65

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 09:55 AM

Thanks for the input guys I think I'll pass on this one. I've had my eye on an Orion Skyquest 4.5" Dobsonian. It's a little closer drive and he had it listed at $200 and has dropped to $180/OBO. Might make him an offer of $160 and pick it up if he still has it in a couple of weeks. Again he says it's in excellent condition so that's a pretty attractive starter for me. 00G0G_7T3RfWSFTgP_0CI0sV_1200x900.jpg



#5 macdonjh

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:10 AM

Well there you go.  Jumping from a 60-70mm refractor to a 112mm scope will provide you with a huge jump in what is visible.  I think you'll be pleased if you decide to get it.  It's also a nearly painless way to explore the world of reflectors.  At 4" of aperture you may wonder what all the fuss is about.  But with your next case of aperture fever, you'll get it when you start researching what it takes to purchase and use an 8" refractor.


Edited by macdonjh, 16 July 2020 - 11:11 AM.

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#6 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 12:38 PM

My two cents:

 

Both scopes are seriously overpriced.  At ~$100 the SpaceProbe 130ST would be a decent scope. I had one.. the mount was too small but the optics were good.

 

$200 is what a used 8 inch Dob in good condition should cost. 

 

Jon


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#7 jiblet65

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 01:31 PM

My two cents:

 

Both scopes are seriously overpriced.  At ~$100 the SpaceProbe 130ST would be a decent scope. I had one.. the mount was too small but the optics were good.

 

$200 is what a used 8 inch Dob in good condition should cost. 

 

Jon

The Skyquest is $250 new so I doubt he'd go down to $125 if it is in fact in excellent condition. If you don't mind my asking what would think would be a fair price for it?
 



#8 macdonjh

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 01:39 PM

My two cents:

 

Both scopes are seriously overpriced.  At ~$100 the SpaceProbe 130ST would be a decent scope. I had one.. the mount was too small but the optics were good.

 

$200 is what a used 8 inch Dob in good condition should cost. 

 

Jon

To add to Jon Isaacs' point about pricing: 

 

You can do some research in the classifieds here by searching for what you want to buy and seeing what typical prices are in "sold" ads.  Case in point: recently I was looking for a particular eye piece.  I knew from previous purchases the going price for what I wanted is $145- $165.  When I looked here and elsewhere I saw ads with asking prices between $145 and $279.  So you never can tell what people will ask for.  

 

Anyway, my point is, there is good information out there about current selling prices for used astronomy gear.  Having that information will give you confidence in any offers you make as well make it unlikely you'll feel cheated in any purchases you make.


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