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what can you see with a Sears/Towa 60mm

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#1 godelescher

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Posted 09 February 2021 - 09:41 PM

I know the optics are supposed to be good. I know that using modern 1.25" EPs will be better than the supplied EPs. But what can you really see with a 60mm f15(?) scope (aside from the moon)?

 

 


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#2 oldmanastro

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Posted 09 February 2021 - 10:32 PM

 There are many deep sky objects and double stars that this telescope can handle. It will do well on planets like Saturn and Jupiter. On Jupiter it will show not only the 4 bigger moons but also some of the atmospheric belts and on Saturn it will show the ring very clearly. During the Mars opposition in October I could see markings on the planet disc with my own Sears/ Towa 60mm. Right now Mars is so small that it is a disappointing sight even in larger instruments.  At this time you can see double stars like Castor, Algieba, Iota Cancri or Rigel. In Orion you can see the Great Orion Nebula and the Trapezium. I could name many other objects that I and others have observed with a Sears/Towa 60mm f/15. An image of your scope would be nice.

 

 A set of 1.25" eyepieces. A 26mm, 15mm and 8mm Plossl eyepiece set will be a good start. In addition you will also need a 1.25" to .965" eyepiece adapter to fit the 1.25" eyepieces to the telescope. Believe me, they are a definite improvement over the supplied original set. The optics in these telescopes are usually good. The equatorial mount handles the telescope very well too. 


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#3 CharlieB

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Posted 09 February 2021 - 11:21 PM

A long 60mm Towa scope is great for double stars.  

 

stellarf20.jpg


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#4 GreyDay

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Posted 10 February 2021 - 04:06 AM

Quite a lot :)

 

Jupiters moons, Saturns rings, Messier objects, bright galaxies, open/globular clusters and thousands of double/multiple stars. It's a myth that "you can't see anything with less than an 8" dob"!

 

60mm classic scopes are portable, have fast cooldown, are easy (forgiving) on eyepieces, cheap to buy, mount and maintain and most importantly are affected less than larger apertures by atmospheric seeing.

 

I have an 8" Newt that probably gets used about 10 percent of my time under the stars, the other 90% is spent with refractors or maks of 40-102mm.


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#5 grif 678

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Posted 10 February 2021 - 05:14 PM

Most of the vintage 60mm scopes will have descent optics, most will be made in Japan. The main reason that some 60mm scopes get a bad rap, is because of the sorry, wobbly mounts. Many of them will come with the yoke mount, with only 1 slow motion, that would be the rod on the side connected to the tube, and that will move it up and down by turning the knob. The side ways motion is just by moving the scope by hand. The Sears you have should have very good optics, if you could find a 114 unitron altaz mount, you would love this scope much more. The easiest, smoothest, lightest and sturdiest mount for a 60mm scope. From what I have read, the Sears 60mm scopes on the average will have better optics than many unitrons,


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#6 godelescher

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Posted 10 February 2021 - 06:56 PM

Most of the vintage 60mm scopes will have descent optics, most will be made in Japan. The main reason that some 60mm scopes get a bad rap, is because of the sorry, wobbly mounts. Many of them will come with the yoke mount, with only 1 slow motion, that would be the rod on the side connected to the tube, and that will move it up and down by turning the knob. The side ways motion is just by moving the scope by hand. The Sears you have should have very good optics, if you could find a 114 unitron altaz mount, you would love this scope much more. The easiest, smoothest, lightest and sturdiest mount for a 60mm scope. From what I have read, the Sears 60mm scopes on the average will have better optics than many unitrons,

Mine came with an equatorial mount and I have no problems with it. I'm not wild about the tripod, but the mount is actually very nice.

 

Since I got the scope, which is basically an unused new-old stock scope, I've set it up a few times and taken it out once. The original Kelner EPs were pretty bad, and I didn't have any other .965 EPs to try.

 

I don't have a problem spending $15 on a 1.25" adapter, but I also don't know how much energy I want to spend on making a 60mm f15 scope usable


Edited by godelescher, 10 February 2021 - 08:31 PM.

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#7 Tenacious

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Posted 12 February 2021 - 02:05 PM

I know the optics are supposed to be good. I know that using modern 1.25" EPs will be better than the supplied EPs. But what can you really see with a 60mm f15(?) scope (aside from the moon)?

 

We are spoiled and have it so good!


Edited by Tenacious, 12 February 2021 - 02:06 PM.


#8 DouglasPaul

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 04:56 AM

Replacing the eyepieces is going to make it much more usable as already stated, with good seeing and good ep;'s they give good views. 



#9 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 06:13 AM

Mine came with an equatorial mount and I have no problems with it. I'm not wild about the tripod, but the mount is actually very nice.

 

Since I got the scope, which is basically an unused new-old stock scope, I've set it up a few times and taken it out once. The original Kelner EPs were pretty bad, and I didn't have any other .965 EPs to try.

 

I don't have a problem spending $15 on a 1.25" adapter, but I also don't know how much energy I want to spend on making a 60mm f15 scope usable

 

What other scopes do you have?  I see you have been a member since 2009. Is this your first scope?  Eyepieces are more or less universal so even if they are purchased with one scope in mind, they can be used others that might come along.

 

There is quite a bit one can see with a 60mm F/15, the planets have been mentioned in detail.  There are a great number of binary stars visible. Castor, Gamma Arietis, Gamma Andromedae, Porrima, Albireo, the triple beta Monocerotis are a few that come to mind.  

 

There are actually quite a number of deep sky objects visible in a 60mm, even from a light polluted backyard. With the right visual back, diagonal and eyepiece, a field of view of 1.7 degrees is possible.  This is enough to fit most of the Pleiades.  Many of the Messier objects will be visible, M44 (the Beehive), M41, M47 and maybe M46, M93, are a few that come to mind.  Galaxies are even possible.  

 

Jon


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#10 CHASLX200

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 07:53 AM

I know the optics are supposed to be good. I know that using modern 1.25" EPs will be better than the supplied EPs. But what can you really see with a 60mm f15(?) scope (aside from the moon)?

Just about anything you can with a bigger scope minus very faint deep sky stuff. Good for the sun, moon and planets and the show case deep sky objects. If the optics are good and the seeing good then 250x is easy for the moon and Jupiter.


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#11 Tenacious

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 12:09 PM

We are spoiled and have it so good!

 

That could read more harsh than I intended.

 

Cassini made his discoveries about 75 years after Galileo using monstrously long refractors.  What a thrill for him if he could have a neighborly peek through your Towa 60mm!  On a night with steady air, you could show him his division.


Edited by Tenacious, 13 February 2021 - 12:12 PM.

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#12 photiost

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 04:40 PM

My very first telescope was a Towa 60mm and I enjoyed that scope for many years  

 

Lets not forget the amazing Solar images the 60mm can provide using the correct Solar filter like the Baader :

https://www.baader-p...15467caa68c580a


Edited by photiost, 13 February 2021 - 04:47 PM.


#13 jgraham

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Posted 13 February 2021 - 07:34 PM

A 60mm f/15 is a fantastic scope! Modern long focal length and UWA eyepieces work wonders for going wide, and the f/15 focal ratio gives almost no color spread supporting higher magnifications. I highly recommend starting with Turn Left at Orion and going off-road by star-hopping with the Pocket Sky Atlas. I’d also add a Vixen finder bracket so you could mount a modern RACI finder.

 

Enjoy!



#14 Terra Nova

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Posted 14 February 2021 - 02:35 PM

My very first scope was a 60mm F11 (1965). I still enjoy using it. (I saw a wonderful Jovian shadow transit just a few months ago with it).

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#15 LukaszLu

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 07:10 AM

When I started my adventure with astronomy in the early 1980s, there was martial law in Poland. Empty shelves in shops, food coupons and there was no question of buying astronomical equipment. After joining the official society of astronomy enthusiasts, however, I obtained a "ration" for the excellent PZO 68/800 lens and built my first telescope on its basis. I used what was available - a cardboard tube, focuser made of a hydraulic PVC tube, a finder lens cell made of glued paper, and an eyepiece sleve made of a spool of adhesive tape ... My dad managed to buy a great Zeiss ortho 10-O eyepiece in the East Germany with 1.3x Barlow lens and an excellent, massive "Goliath" tripod.

 

With this equipment I made my most important astronomical "discoveries", I owe it the most beautiful moments spent in the company of objects of the Solar System. Of course, it was not a device that gave deep insight into Deep Sky objects, but the sky never again made such an impression on me - even though when I returned to my astronomical passion after many years, I tested many different, excellent instruments. Until now, actually - until I looked through the Royal-Astro R-74 refractor. Suddenly something woke up inside me, allowing me to look at the sky in a fresh, intense way again, after so many years...

 

So, yes - through a 60 or 80 mm lens you can sometimes see much more than through 250 mm - I checked it myself...

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#16 jgraham

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 09:41 AM

I'm currently working with several 60mm refractors in the f/12-15 range refamiliarizing myself with what they can do. This is following some work that I was doing with the small ETX refractors and a couple of small reflectors. First, the sky is a Very Big Place with something to offer every size scope, including no scope at all. You just need to adjust your scale and target list. For my 60mm refractors I like to keep them at about 30x for most things, maybe bump them up to 75x for close up views, regardless of the f/ratio. The longer scopes just tend to give a sharper view. For me, a nice RACI finder is a must have. Once I can easily point the scope and get a view that is within the score's parameter space, the rest is easy and enjoyable.

Food for thought.
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#17 Terra Nova

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 09:58 AM

I feel like ~120X is a very nice upper threshold with my three 60mm scopes. That’s 117X with a Vixen 6mm Ortho with my Mayflower (700mm f.l.), 129X with my Unitron (900mm f.l.) using a 7mm Unitron Symmetrical, and 125X with the Takahashi (500mm f.l.) and a circle T flat top Ortho; all 0.956” eyepieces usually, tho all can also use a 1.25” diagonal and eyepieces. They’re all capable of higher power given target and seeing, but generally my upper limit is 100X to 125X with them.


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#18 Tenacious

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 10:03 AM

When I started my adventure with astronomy in the early 1980s, there was martial law in Poland. Empty shelves in shops, food coupons and there was no question of buying astronomical equipment. After joining the official society of astronomy enthusiasts, however, I obtained a "ration" for the excellent PZO 68/800 lens and built my first telescope on its basis. I used what was available - a cardboard tube, focuser made of a hydraulic PVC tube, a finder lens cell made of glued paper, and an eyepiece sleve made of a spool of adhesive tape ... My dad managed to buy a great Zeiss ortho 10-O eyepiece in the East Germany with 1.3x Barlow lens and an excellent, massive "Goliath" tripod.

 

With this equipment I made my most important astronomical "discoveries", I owe it the most beautiful moments spent in the company of objects of the Solar System. Of course, it was not a device that gave deep insight into Deep Sky objects, but the sky never again made such an impression on me - even though when I returned to my astronomical passion after many years, I tested many different, excellent instruments. Until now, actually - until I looked through the Royal-Astro R-74 refractor. Suddenly something woke up inside me, allowing me to look at the sky in a fresh, intense way again, after so many years...

 

So, yes - through a 60 or 80 mm lens you can sometimes see much more than through 250 mm - I checked it myself...

 

I very much appreciate your perspective...

 

That first telescope must be a real treasure for you.


Edited by Tenacious, 15 February 2021 - 10:09 AM.

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#19 LukaszLu

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 02:11 PM

Thank you very much. I keep wondering whether I should be more loyal to a very good lens - then it should be placed in a decent tube with a good focuser - or rather to my inept, though having sentimental value construction. Then it would have to be left in its original form, but doomed the lens to a rather decorative role.

 

For now it is standing and dusting, and I kind of betrayed this scope, paying attention to Japanese classics that I didn't even have a chance to touch at the time :-)



#20 jgraham

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Posted 15 February 2021 - 06:38 PM

For me the emphasis is always making my scopes useful and catching starlight. I like to be able to configure them in their original form for show, but that is secondary. At worst I may add a few small holes to add a Vixen finder bracket that I can later remove and plug if necessary.

 

I have also found that I can easily take my 60mm scopes up in the 120x range and they can produce some beautiful textbook diffraction rings, but I have been exploring how to make these scopes easy to use and exploring good targets so that I can help beginners that often start with the modern versions of these wonderful little scopes. As advanced amateurs we often push the edge, but I want to dedicate some time to backing off to more comfortable and accessible territory and I am having a lot of fun doing it.


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#21 Terra Nova

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Posted 16 February 2021 - 11:58 AM

I feel like ~120X is a very nice upper threshold with my three 60mm scopes. That’s 117X with a Vixen 6mm Ortho with my Mayflower (700mm f.l.), 129X with my Unitron (900mm f.l.) using a 7mm Unitron Symmetrical, and 125X with the Takahashi (500mm f.l.) and a 4mm circle T flat top Ortho; all 0.956” eyepieces usually, tho all can also use a 1.25” diagonal and eyepieces. They’re all capable of higher power given target and seeing, but generally my upper limit is 100X to 125X with them.

(Edit above in red)



#22 grif 678

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Posted 17 February 2021 - 10:38 PM

Farpoint optics is selling the Parks hybrid .965 to 1.25 diagonal ( not the adaptor ) for $25 with free shipping. That will improve the performance a lot, better than the adaptor.


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#23 GreyDay

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Posted 18 February 2021 - 08:45 AM

I feel like ~120X is a very nice upper threshold with my three 60mm scopes. 

 

They’re all capable of higher power given target and seeing, but generally my upper limit is 100X to 125X with them.

My most used ep for 60mm f15 1.25" scopes is my 7.5mm halloween plossl at 120x, if i need to go higher i use a 6mm BCO for 150x, i use oem ep's in my .965 setups.

 

120x is a really comfortable mag, just high enough for any 60mm scope to cope with and still easy to keep targets in the fov.



#24 rogue river art

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Posted 19 February 2021 - 08:28 PM

In Chicago you can see the Sears tower.lol.gif lol.gif lol.gif



#25 godelescher

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Posted 19 February 2021 - 08:43 PM

I picked up a .965" to 1.25" adapter to use some of my regular EPs. I'm going to set it up and try it out Sunday night (it's supposed to be clear for the first time in what seems like months).

 

I'll look for some doubles and check out the moon. It would be nice to hunt for some planets, but this isn't the right time for that.

 

Anyway, thanks for your replies. I'll post again after Sunday.


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