Results 1 to 3 of 3
Like Tree4Likes
  • 1 Post By Avid Astronomer
  • 1 Post By Gabby76
  • 2 Post By helicon64

Thread: Outreach telescope insurance

  1. #1
    Avid Astronomer's Avatar
    Avid Astronomer is offline Main Sequence
    Points: 2,134, Level: 29
    Level completed: 34%, Points required for next Level: 66
    Overall activity: 0%
    2 Posts Achievement20 Posts Achievement!Got three Friends50 Posts Achievement!5 Threads Achievement!
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    College Station, TX
    Thanked 91x 33 Posts

    Default Outreach telescope insurance

    In the past couple of years, I've really been stepping up my outreach, both personally and as part of my local astronomy club. This has lead me to start wondering what I would do if something catastrophic happened to my equipment while on one of these public outings.

    So far, I've been extremely lucky, but not without a few close calls. Last summer, I took a telescope to a science fair at an elementary school. I had my 12" dob pointed at the filtered sun (it was a daytime event) and turned my back for just a few seconds to answer a parent's question. I turned back around just in time to hear a loud *snap* as a youngster unsuccessfully tried to use my empty eyepiece rack as a stepladder. With Bryan's help (bladekeeper), I was able to repair the damage very cheaply, but I may not be so lucky next time. My mind imagines a kid picking up a rock and chucking it down my scope tube and smashing my mirror.

    To ease my mind, I've been speaking with my local insurance agent about my telescope outreach. He says my equipment is covered under my homeowner's policy, but since I have a $3000 deductible, it won't really do me much good. He offered to add a rider to my house insurance that would cover the scopes and eyepieces separately with no deductible, but couldn't make a policy until he had an expert appraisal of their individual values.

    Our town doesn't have a telescope shop or even a camera shop, really. The insurance agent suggested I find an antiques appraiser or jewelry appraiser, but I really don't think they'd be able to help me. I did offer to send him new or used quotes from multiple sources and average them into an appraised value, but he said that wasn't good enough for their company.

    Now that I've started thinking about how many things can go wrong at an outreach, I'm getting afraid to do any more sidewalk astronomy until I get everything insured properly. Does anyone have any experience with this? Should I shop around and try to find a different insurance company that will do it without all this fuss, or do you know of a good way to get appraisal documents for used (but far from antique) telescope equipment?
    helicon64 likes this.
    Tom Campbell (

    To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 5 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

    SCOPES: Zhumell Z12 f/5 (Zoomie), Discovery DHQ-8 f/6, Meade DS-2080AT 80 f/10, Meade AS80 f/5 (Cutie) BINOS: 10x50, 16x50, 10x70
    1,124 Observations, 603 Objects (97 Glxy, 185 OC, 58 GC, 17 Neb, 39 PN, 171 Dbl) Sessions in 2018: 21 Best: 36 (2001)
    AL Awards: Messier, Double Star, Bino Messier, Planetary Transit

  2. #2
    Gabby76's Avatar
    Gabby76 is offline Super Moderator
    Points: 84,259, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 99.8%
    2 Posts Achievement20 Posts Achievement!Gallery Achievement!Album Achievement!50 Posts Achievement!
    Activity & Post & Thread Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Thanked 6,026x 5,063 Posts
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Outreach telescope insurance

    The insurance company I use at home just needed copies of receipts and photographs of all equipment.
    I would email or call a few and see what their policy is.
    Avid Astronomer likes this.
    Refractors: Antares 105 f/15, Celestron 150 f/8, Stellarvue NHNG 80 f/6.9, TAL 100RS f/10, TS 102 f/11, UR 70 f/10, Vixen SD115s f/7.7
    Mounts: Celestron SLT w/ pier mod & EQ-3 tripod, Celestron hypertuned CG-5 w/ tracking motor & Argo Navis, Manfrotto 028B w/ Stellarvue M2C, Manfrotto 055PRO w/ 128RC, TAL-1 HD EQ, Vixen SXP w/ HAL-130 SXG & half pier
    Diagonals: 2" Astro-Physics MaxBright, 2" Zeiss/ Baader prism, 2" Baader Herschel Wedge (Photo Version), 2"
    To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 5 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.
    Amici prism, 2" Stellarvue Dielectric, 2" TeleVue Everbrite
    Eyepieces: A-Z

    To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 5 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.

    The weakest link in the optical chain is the large nut located directly behind the eyepiece/ camera. - Gabrielle
    Ya gotta keep this Apo/
    To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 5 or greater. You currently have 0 signatures.
    thing in some balance of perspective. Apos are awesome, but long focus Achros aren't that far behind them - Siriusandthepup (CN)

    Refractors kick arse precisely because they don't hide behind excuses. That is, they have no obstructions to hide behind. - Jon Isaacs (CN)

  3. #3
    helicon64's Avatar
    helicon64 is offline HYPER GIANT
    Points: 134,833, Level: 100
    Level completed: 0%, Points required for next Level: 0
    Overall activity: 3.0%
    2 Posts Achievement20 Posts Achievement!50 Posts Achievement!Ghost Achievement! Averaging 5+ posts a day!200+ Posts Achievement!
    Most Friends Award!
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Berkeley, CA
    Thanked 6,969x 5,426 Posts

    Default Re: Outreach telescope insurance

    I've made photos of my equipment and submitted them to my insurance company - they are covered under my homeowner's policy. Just finished having the house re-appraised by a realtor which will impact my premiums (the insurance company has upped the rate) but I needed to do it so that the replacement cost was re-estimated in the event of fire or other catastrophe. And that is a severe risk in the September/October fire season in these parts. Anyway, I'm less worried about the scopes then fire/earthquake. I already have a plan to evacuate my scopes into the SUV if I have sufficient notice of what is coming.
    Obsession 18" f/4.2, Zhumell Z10 f/4.9, ES AR 152 refractor f/6.5, Celestron Skymaster 15x70's , Bushnell 10x50's
    9x50mm RACI finder, Telrad, Rigel Quickfinder, 30mm Erfle, 9mm Plossl, and full line of ES eyepieces
    Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is Limited. Imagination Circles the World... A. Einstein



Similar Threads

  1. Telescope Insurance?
    By MickiEcho in forum Telescope Forum
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 07-17-2017, 09:41 PM
  2. Volunteering for outreach events and bring the telescope
    By jazzin in forum General Stargazing Forum
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 02-03-2016, 01:19 PM
  3. Replies: 16
    Last Post: 01-08-2015, 02:03 PM
  4. Replies: 15
    Last Post: 04-10-2012, 04:03 AM
  5. Telescope insurance
    By Florian in forum Amateur Astronomy Forum
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 03-26-2007, 02:51 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.2.0
Powered by vBulletin®
All times are GMT. The time now is 08:03 PM.