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  1. #1
    barnstorm's Avatar
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    Question "star party" questions, does each viewer need to re-focus? Why the cheap eyepiece?



    .
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    I am planning on taking my 16" DOB to some public events this summer.

    In the past I have been most introverted with my ETX so this will be new for me.

    I have 2 questions.

    1. Do viewers really need to re-focus my telescope?

    I have contacts that give me 20/20 vision in both eyes. If it is focused for me, would that not also put it in focus for everyone else?

    2. I overheard someone giving advise at a club meeting and she said that her and her husband use "spare", cheaper eyepieces at public events. Several people seemed to agree.

    Why might this be? Are you afraid they might get stolen, or people will sneeze on them or pull them out and drop them?

    I would have thought that you would want to bring out your very best for the public.

  2. #2
    KathyNS's Avatar
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    The eyepiece will be in focus for everyone who has 20/20 vision. Anyone else will need to refocus.

    I think people use cheap eyepieces for all the reasons you mentioned. I like to let people look through my Panoptic just for the Wow! factor.

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  4. #3
    magic612's Avatar
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    1. Perhaps; those not using glasses or contacts with something other than 20/20 may wish to slightly refocus. Those who take off their glasses with strongly corrected vision will very like need to refocus.

    2. I don't, but I don't own eyepieces that cost more than $60. But I can understand some people's hesitation at bringing $400 - $700 eyepieces that can get smeared with mascara (yes, that happens), grabbed by kids (can you imagine an Ethos dropping out of a Dob onto concrete?), poked/touched by kids (or adults), and yes, some "ahem" enterprising people with sticky fingers who may know the value of certain eyepieces.... yes, there's valid reasons to keep the really pricey glass at home.
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  6. #4
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    Default

    I should point out, with respect to focusing (and even eyepieces, generally), it's best to let people know every time a new person comes up to your scope what to do / not do (in a nice way, of course). Something like this:

    "Hi, please feel free to have a look through the scope - feel free to refocus if you need to, here (pointing out focuser knob) but please don't grab the eyepiece or touch the scope as it will move it off-target."
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  8. #5
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    Default

    I have agree with the cheap eyepiece theory, at least if there are kids around. I use a Celestron zoom for my outreach stuff. It doesn't take but a second for those little fingers to do a 'look at this daddy'.
    As to focus, yes it normally does. My eyes aren't real good anymore so my focus is different enough that most people need to do some small adjustments to suit themselves. The suggestion by Magic612 about a telescope introduction for each view is pretty much the same as I use.

    And

    Never leave your scope unattended! Even for a second.
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  9. #6
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    Humm...

    If you let them refocus then chances of them putting the object out of view seem like they would go WAY up.

    /

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    Quote Originally Posted by barnstorm View Post
    Humm...

    If you let them refocus then chances of them putting the object out of view seem like they would go WAY up.

    /
    Yup! (motorized focusers work great!)
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  11. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by barnstorm View Post
    Humm...

    If you let them refocus then chances of them putting the object out of view seem like they would go WAY up.

    /
    I suppose the chances do go up, but I've never had a problem. I think when people are told not to touch the scope or grab the eyepiece, they realize they must be gentle with the focusing knob and move it gently. Besides, they tend to look first - not focus before putting their eye there - so when they go to touch the telescope at that point, they can see how little it takes to move the scope or vibrate it.

    And the few who do bump it? It usually doesn't take long to find a showpiece object and recenter it.
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    I am near sighted and wear glasses, which in most cases I can not wear when looking through a telescope, thus I would be one of those people who might need to refocus in order to properly see the object. Usually, my eyes can adjust, but sometimes, depending on the eyepiece, that is not the case.

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    On the cheap eyepiece thing? I fully understand why people do that.

    But I'm sort of in the mode of trying to suck people into the hobby. For that the "wow" factor counts and the better eyepieces tend to supply that. So at the moment I still use the better eyepieces - and fully understand why some others don't.

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