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Should I buy a 10" dob as a second scope?

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#1 StarDancerFL

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 03:00 AM

I am just a few months into this hobby. Bought a NexStar 6SE July 31 because I felt that was a happy medium to use for both planets and DSO and because it's transportable. Now I'm looking to buy a 10" dob to have something larger and non-electronic. In general, how different will the dob view be compared to the 6SE? Brighter? Wider? Is there enough difference to make it worth buying the dob at all?

 

I am considering a used Orion XT10 or a new Skyline 10 or Apertura AD10. Is the XT10 a good scope?  Will I have to collimate it every time I transport it in the car?  I want to make the right choice because this will be the last one I buy.


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#2 sg6

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 03:17 AM

The difference is in a way large. The 2 are simple completely different form of scope.

The SE is a small slow scope and the 10" would be a large fast scope, oddly the SE is likely to have the longer focal length still.

 

The 10" will collect around 4x the amount of light, so faint objects will be brighter at the same magnification. Do not expect massively greater magnifications. Assorted "rules" will say one thing, reality is give another. You well find you see more but not necessarily bigger. Problem is people use "more" for both situations.

 

Expect the 10" to require better eyepieces, as scopes get faster the eyepieces have to improve to match the speed increase. Basically a 10mm ploss is unlikely to do well in the 10".

 

Another is that I expect a 10" to be around f/4.7 so you will at some time want a coma corrector.

 

Basically the 2 are different. What each ends up being used for and possibly more relevant how often will be the question. A 10" is not overly large so should be used often.



#3 starbug

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 03:40 AM

I'd try with a manual mount first. Preferrably with an EQ,which can be turned to AZ.

I actually did it and like my manual mounts for visual much more than GoTo.

 

Johann



#4 Paul Sweeney

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 05:42 AM

If this is to be a "final" scope (how many times have I said that?), then I strongly suggest finding you local club and trying one out. See what eyepieces work, how it moves, and try collimating it. Nothing beats first hand information.

You will need to collimate a 4.7 scope often. Every time out you will check it. It will soon become something you do as part of your setup routine. Tweaking the collimation will soon be child's play. It's no big deal, don't worry about it.

The choice of scope is important. Roller bearings or teflon in azimuth? Some like one, some the other. Small bearings in altitude will probably cause balance issues with different size eyepieces. Which eyepieces work well? These and other issues are why you should seek help from you local club.
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#5 MellonLake

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 07:59 AM

You will probably have to collimate when you move it.  Collimating is super easy and takes all of one or two minutes at site (an I get perfect star tests every time).  I can set up and collimate my XT10 in far less time than it takes to set up my 120ST on a AZ mount and in 1/10th the time it takes to set up the EQ mount.  Dob's are in general much easier than other telescopes to set up.  

 

If you have access to dark skies (Bortle 4 or better), I would get as much aperture as  you can afford and transport.  If this is a 10" dob then that is probably the ideal instrument for you.  

 

I have seen so much with my XT10 I can't every see myself not owning a 10" or larger aperture.  This spring I counted 67 visible galaxies in Virgo.  I have visually seen the spiral arms of M51.  M15 looks like 100,000 stars in a 10".   I found 75 messier objects in one night (I could have found nearly 100 but got cold as it was -10C).   I have found 6 moons of Saturn. 

 

I don't think you can make a mistake with a 10" Dobsonian.  These are easy telescopes to use and own.  I will also say (based on your user name) that dew is a big issue in Florida and solid tube Dobonians do very well with dew (provided you keep the eyepieces warm).  I have viewed from the Sarasota and Everglades areas a couple of times with the XT10 and found it very rewarding.

 

FYI - you can always sell a Dobsonain for a huge percentage of what you bought it for.  They resell very easily.  Even if you don't like it, it is a minimal investment.  

 

 

Rob 


Edited by MellonLake, 18 October 2020 - 09:17 AM.

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#6 MrRoberts

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 08:45 AM

10" is the sweet spot when size/weight vs aperture is considered. Many consider the size to be their forever ota.

As for the difference in views. Brighter, immersive views for sure. May require 2 new ep's.

Don't sweat collimation.

If I were to have in the future space and place for one, it would be my next choice also.


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#7 MaknMe

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 09:07 AM

I think this is a great plan. You will find that you still gab your smaller scope more often. But, when you do drag it out, the big dob will be a real treat.
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#8 LIVE LONG

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 09:34 AM

   The 10" Dob is the ideal scope to own. I call it the "Goldilocks" scope, not too big not too small, just right !

 

   I seriously doubt, if you buy a 10" Dob., you will ever consider selling it. It's just too good of a scope.

 

   You will, if you have not already, have to upgrade to good eyepieces.

 

   I agree with having to check collimation. I do it every time I use my scope. It becomes second nature, after a while. Just make sure you have a good laser collimator.

 

   I just upgraded to a Howie Glatter "Parallizer", 2" to 1.25" centering adaptor. This made a big difference in getting perfect collimation, and eyepiece alignment. As an added bonus, the adaptor has a smooth bore. My eyepiece safety undercut's, no longer get hung up !

          

   Good Luck and Clear Skies!!!


Edited by LIVE LONG, 18 October 2020 - 09:34 AM.

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#9 csrlice12

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 10:11 AM

No, it should have been your first scope.grin.gif   


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#10 ShaulaB

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 10:31 AM

Find out if the 10 inch scope will fit in your vehicle. Under dark skies, you will be really thrilled with its views.
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#11 aeajr

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 11:10 AM

I am just a few months into this hobby. Bought a NexStar 6SE July 31 because I felt that was a happy medium to use for both planets and DSO and because it's transportable. Now I'm looking to buy a 10" dob to have something larger and non-electronic. In general, how different will the dob view be compared to the 6SE? Brighter? Wider? Is there enough difference to make it worth buying the dob at all?

 

I am considering a used Orion XT10 or a new Skyline 10 or Apertura AD10. Is the XT10 a good scope?  Will I have to collimate it every time I transport it in the car?  I want to make the right choice because this will be the last one I buy.

Those are all good scopes, so no issue there.  I owned an XT8i and now own an AD12.

 

I think a 10" Dob will be an excellent complement to the 6SE.  That is why I have an 80 mm refractor, 5" Mak and a 12" Dob. Each provides options that the others don't offer. 

 

The Apertura AD10, the Skyline 10 and the Zhumell Z 10 are the same scope with different labels.  They are all made by GSO.  The AD10 and Z10 have the same accessories.  The Skyline's accessory package is slightly different but fairly equivalent.   From  your list, I would lean toward the AD10 or the Z10, but they are all good choices. 

 

I have 5 scopes.  One is a 5" GoTo Mak, just a little smaller than your 6" SCT.   I had an 8" XT8i and now have a 12" AD12.

 

Difference between the 6SE and the 10" Dob would be similar to my 5" Mak and my 8" Dob.  Light gathering difference, about 2.5X for mine.   Your 6" SCT to 10" Dob light gathering difference, about 2.7X, so quite similar in that respect.

 

Collimation

 

I collimate my Dob about every 5 times at home but I collimate it after a car trip. Takes about 2-3 minutes and is quite easy to do. Any adjustments are tiny.  

 

Collimation is a non-issue.  Takes a few minutes with a laser collimator or a collimation cap.  The laser is more convenient. The AD10, Z10 and Skyline come with lasers.  The XT10 comes with a collimation cap. 

 

How to Collimate an Orion Reflector Telescope using a collimation cap or a laser

The others work the same way. Quick and easy. 
https://www.youtube....h?v=YAVGcGEBmCE

 

 

Field of View

 

Field of view is based on magnification provided by the eyepiece and the eyepiece apparent field of view specification. Because the Dobs you listed have two 2" focusers they can provide a wider view than the SCT. 

 

The 6SE's 1.25" focuser means that your low power wide view would be a 32 mm Plossl giving you 46.8X and about a 1 degree field of view.

 

The Dobs have 2" focusers.  I use a 38 mm 2" with a 70 degree AFOV.  In one of those scopes that would provide 31.6X and about a 2.2 degree FOV, more than twice as wide as the SCT's widest possible FOV. 

 

 

Finding and tracking.

 

The 6SE finds and tracks your targets.  With a manual Dob you have to find the targets and you track them.  How good are your skills at finding things without the use of a computer?   Are you prepared to learn?   There are several methods you can use.

 

Seven Ways To Find Things In the Sky
https://www.cloudyni...e-there-others/

 

There are computer assisted Dobs.  For example the XT10 Intelliscope PushTo or the XT10G GoTo Dobs. The AD10, Z10 and Skyline 10 can have a PushTo system added for about $100 called EX PushTo.

 

Light

 

By gathering 2.7X as much light, objects will be brighter and you can see dimmer objects.   The larger aperture gives you finer resolution so you can see finer details. And typically, because you gather more light, you will be able to apply more magnification, likely 40x to 80X more depending on the conditions. 

 

My 12" Dob gathers 2.25X as much light as my 8" Dob.  As a result I can see things and resolve things in the 12" that I could not in the 8".  And I can apply 40X to 80X more mag.  So I speak from experience. 

 

Size

 

Where will you store the Dob and how will you move it?  Will it fit in your car? Should you be considering a truss rather than a solid tube?

 

The 6SE breaks down into pieces so you can easily move them and put them in any car.   A solid tube Dob needs more space and the tube is heavier but it can be moved in two pieces.

 

I prefer a solid tube but, for some the truss Dobs are a better option. For example:

https://www.explores...79bb90caa&_ss=r

 

 

 

 

My XT8i lived in the garage on a cart.  My AD12 lives in the garage on a hand truck.  These made moving the scope super easy.  Put your cursor over the photo for the description. 

Attached Thumbnails

  • Apertura fitted to red handtruck (240x320).jpg
  • Apertura AD12 and Orion XT8i (240x320).jpg
  • AD12 tube base observing chair hand truck and all accesories in Rogue with front passenger set still available (320x240).jpg
  • XT8i on cart   269X480 .jpg

Edited by aeajr, 18 October 2020 - 11:51 AM.

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#12 LDW47

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 11:24 AM

I am just a few months into this hobby. Bought a NexStar 6SE July 31 because I felt that was a happy medium to use for both planets and DSO and because it's transportable. Now I'm looking to buy a 10" dob to have something larger and non-electronic. In general, how different will the dob view be compared to the 6SE? Brighter? Wider? Is there enough difference to make it worth buying the dob at all?

 

I am considering a used Orion XT10 or a new Skyline 10 or Apertura AD10. Is the XT10 a good scope?  Will I have to collimate it every time I transport it in the car?  I want to make the right choice because this will be the last one I buy.

If you jolt it around, bang it around you will surely have to collimate it quite often, if you take care when moving it maybe ......... ! These scopes are solidly built but they aren’t made for battle, lol ! Basically its all how you handle it, so make sure of your strength levels and where you intend to use it, regardless of the carts, the dollies, the wagons or what have you !


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#13 moonrakercat

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 11:38 AM

If you jolt it around, bang it around you will surely have to collimate it quite often, if you take care when moving it maybe ......... ! These scopes are solidly built but they aren’t made for battle, lol ! Basically its all how you handle it, so make sure of your strength levels and where you intend to use it, regardless of the carts, the dollies, the wagons or what have you !

Exactly what was said above.   I have an xt8 - used for the last 20 years - still have it - great scope - I treat & handle it with care - only collimate it every spring - it holds it well - and easily fits in the car. 

 

Big difference in the view- you will see significant increase in brightness between a 6 and 10.   Manual scopes are more engaging than the computerized - I have 2 dobs & don't think I'd enjoy a computerized scope nearly as much.  


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#14 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 11:41 AM

Wider?

The maximum true field of view of your 1500mm focal length 6" f/10 SCT with a 1.25" eyepiece is around 1.1 degrees, as compared to approximately 1.4 degrees for a 1200mm focal length 10" Dob.  The Dob can produce a true field of view of close to 1.9 degrees with a 2" 70-degree wide-field eyepiece without exceeding a 7mm exit pupil and a maximum of about 2.3 degrees with a 40mm 70-degree "finder" eyepiece.


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#15 LDW47

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 11:41 AM

Exactly what was said above.   I have an xt8 - used for the last 20 years - still have it - great scope - I treat & handle it with care - only collimate it every spring - it holds it well - and easily fits in the car. 

 

Big difference in the view- you will see significant increase in brightness between a 6 and 10.   Manual scopes are more engaging than the computerized - I have 2 dobs & don't think I'd enjoy a computerized scope nearly as much.  

I had 3 dobs, now just a 6”, I had considered a computerized, am I ever glad I didn’t as I love just plain old star hopping with all of my sizes of scopes.


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#16 StarDancerFL

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:20 PM

Those are all good scopes, so no issue there.  I owned an XT8i and now own an AD12.

 

I think a 10" Dob will be an excellent complement to the 6SE.  That is why I have an 80 mm refractor, 5" Mak and a 12" Dob. Each provides options that the others don't offer. 

 

------------

Thank you for your detailed answer and pictures. 

I like the NexStar6 for getting me started on learning the sky quickly. However, I would enjoy having a manual scope to hunt for objects myself. (I tried stretching out on a beach lounger with my binocs and found it very relaxing.)  

 

My big decision is whether to get the used XT10, hold out for a used Skyline/Apertura/Zhumell, or buy one of those 3 new (all on backorder now). I would prefer the Skyline10 or  Z10 or AD10.  Just don't know the odds of one showing up used.



#17 MellonLake

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:30 PM

XT10 or Apertura or Zuhmell are going to be essentially visually equivalent at the eyepiece.  There are a few more bells and whistles on the Z10 or AD10 (better bearings, RA finder, cooling fan, and two speed focuser).   I am happy with my XT10 but I have added the RA finer, the two speed focuser and the cooling fan (bearings would be nice but really aren't practical to change).  If you can wait, I would.  If not, get a used XT10 at a much lower price and add these features after.  


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#18 StarDancerFL

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:30 PM

You will probably have to collimate when you move it.  Collimating is super easy and takes all of one or two minutes at site (an I get perfect star tests every time).  I can set up and collimate my XT10 in far less time than it takes to set up my 120ST on a AZ mount and in 1/10th the time it takes to set up the EQ mount.  Dob's are in general much easier than other telescopes to set up.  

 

If you have access to dark skies (Bortle 4 or better), I would get as much aperture as  you can afford and transport.  If this is a 10" dob then that is probably the ideal instrument for you.  

 

I have seen so much with my XT10 I can't every see myself not owning a 10" or larger aperture.  This spring I counted 67 visible galaxies in Virgo.  I have visually seen the spiral arms of M51.  M15 looks like 100,000 stars in a 10".   I found 75 messier objects in one night (I could have found nearly 100 but got cold as it was -10C).   I have found 6 moons of Saturn. 

 

I don't think you can make a mistake with a 10" Dobsonian.  These are easy telescopes to use and own.  I will also say (based on your user name) that dew is a big issue in Florida and solid tube Dobonians do very well with dew (provided you keep the eyepieces warm).  I have viewed from the Sarasota and Everglades areas a couple of times with the XT10 and found it very rewarding.

 

FYI - you can always sell a Dobsonain for a huge percentage of what you bought it for.  They resell very easily.  Even if you don't like it, it is a minimal investment.  

 

 

Rob 

Thank you for your helpful reply. I feel better about collimating after reading all the comments. 



#19 SpaceConqueror3

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:43 PM

Heck yeah, get the XT10. I've had mine for 16+ years now and it's super quick to set up and tweak the collimation, if needed. A Coma Corrector is an expensive nice to have but it's not needed to enjoy the XT10. As far as car space, I haven't transported it in awhile but I had no problem getting mine in/out of  both a Jeep TJ Wrangler and VW Golf (Mk4) with room to spare for camping gear, etc.

 

 


#20 vtornado

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 12:52 PM

You will see a lot more in a 10 inch dob than a 6 inch SCT.   More light, wider field, no batteries.  You lose some portability, tracking and goto.

Expensive eyepieces are not required unless you go ultra wide and expect a perfect view.   60 degree eyepieces work very nice in my f/5.

My secondary never needs fiddling with, but bouncing the scope over bumpy ground on a cart means the primary needs a little tweak

ever time I use it.  The barlowed laser technique is fast, foolproof, and can be done in the dark.  You can even experiment with replacing

the primary mirror springs with a little stiffer model.

 

If you step down in aperture to an 8 inch, these come up for sale frequently on craig's list and can be had for $200-$250.  10 inchers

are nicer, but come up very infrequently in my used market.  The increase in views will be less than going to the 10 (100/36 vs 64/36),

but still a nice increase. 


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#21 aeajr

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Posted 18 October 2020 - 02:21 PM

 

Those are all good scopes, so no issue there.  I owned an XT8i and now own an AD12.

 

I think a 10" Dob will be an excellent complement to the 6SE.  That is why I have an 80 mm refractor, 5" Mak and a 12" Dob. Each provides options that the others don't offer. 

 

------------

Thank you for your detailed answer and pictures. 

I like the NexStar6 for getting me started on learning the sky quickly. However, I would enjoy having a manual scope to hunt for objects myself. (I tried stretching out on a beach lounger with my binocs and found it very relaxing.)  

 

My big decision is whether to get the used XT10, hold out for a used Skyline/Apertura/Zhumell, or buy one of those 3 new (all on backorder now). I would prefer the Skyline10 or  Z10 or AD10.  Just don't know the odds of one showing up used.

 

Do you realize you can just buy a different mount and put the 6SE optical tube on that?  If what you want is a manual scope, just get a manual mount. 

 

This would work quite nicely.  I have my 5" Mak on a similar mount. 

https://www.astronom...muth-mount.html



#22 John Wunderlin

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Posted 20 October 2020 - 01:27 PM

There are computer assisted Dobs.  For example the XT10 Intelliscope PushTo or the XT10G GoTo Dobs. The AD10, Z10 and Skyline 10 can have a PushTo system added for about $100 called EX PushTo.

Do you have a link for the Ex PushTo?  I haven't heard of that and a quick google search came up blanks.  Thanks



#23 aeajr

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Posted 20 October 2020 - 02:09 PM

I am sorry. Typo

 

EZ Pushto from Romer Optics - For GSO Dobs - GSO, Zhumell, Apertura, Orion Skyline among others.  

https://romer-optics...ds-of-dobsonian

 

And then there is the Orion Intelliscope line that ranges from 6" to 14" in tabletop, solid tube,and truss tube designs

https://www.telescop...rd=Intelliscope

 

There are others too. 

 

I owned an Intelliscope - loved it.

 

I own an Apertura and may add the EZ Pushto some day. 


Edited by aeajr, 20 October 2020 - 02:17 PM.


#24 MawkHawk

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Posted 21 October 2020 - 07:40 PM

I've had and used this same combination for years. I have the 6SE OTA on a Meade LXD-55 and ES Twilight mount. I mostly use the 6SE in my white zone backyard for planets and doubles, mainly. My 10" xt10g is for darker skies. It's a great combination.

 

You can also mount a Sky Commander and possibly Nexus DSC on many manual 10" dobs



#25 JustAnotherScott

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Posted 21 October 2020 - 09:55 PM

I can only tell you my experience and let you decide. I live  in a city and on a good night I have bortle 8 skies. 

 

I started this spring with my z130. Its awesome and I adore it. Its great as its super for quick sessions where I just want to go out for an hour or less. Its really portable and I take it on trips. However I really wanted to see DSO and its hard to do with this scope at home. 

 

I picked up an old 10" dob from the 90's this summer from a guy in my astronomy group. Its really fun for better nights off my back porch that I plan on being out for a long time. Its small enough that taking it on the porch is pretty easy and I have no qualms about doing so. It is still portable enough that I can easily put the OTA in the back of my truck cab by myself but I have to be motivated to do so. My smaller scope travels so much easier and under dark skies is a gem so generally I choose that for long trips. For short trips to my friends rural house and back I take the 10" or for outreach in my neighborhood.  Cool down is maybe an hour and colimination is fairly simple. I love it because under my bright skies I can see so much more detail. Planets pop and it handles high magnification with ease.

 

For me I love having both and they serve all my current needs well.


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