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Thread: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

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    Question Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic



    I just received an Orion XT8 classic from my wife as a Birthday gift. I have never had a telescope before but have always been interested in Astronomy. I used it for the first time this evening and have to say I am really impressed. I was able to see the bands on Jupiter and the rings on Saturn. I have a few questions if someone doesn't ming putting up with a newbie's dumb questions:

    1. Saturn was crazy bright but I could distinctly see the rings. In photography terms it looked like it was completely over exposed. My question is would I improve it by using a neutral density (another photography term), a polarizing filter or a moon filter that I used tonight to look at the moon?

    2. I have seen a ton of information about people mounting a cooing fan on the back of the telescope and that the increase in image quality really is evident. I understand one purpose of the fan to cool the mirror to ambient temperature. Does the fan also act as a sort of gyro to stabilize the telescope and reduce any telescope movement that would result in a shaky image?

    3. What are the recommendations for more accessories? I have a 1.25" 2x barlow lens, 1.25" eyepiece (came with the telescope), and a moon filter.

    4. Not that I want to do it now or anytime soon (I would like to learn how to use it manually to build my understanding of the star map and relationship of stars and planets to Earth. Is it possible to get the base and proper tube bearings to convert the classic to an XT8g? I know it is most definitely more cost effective to sell mine and get an XT8g but I am a sentimental type who like to hold on to things that are given as a gift. If it is possible would anyone have an idea of how much it would cost?

    I am sure I will have a ton more question but this is the greatest. I wish I had bought a telescope years ago.

    Thanks,
    Troy

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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Troy,
    I also own a XT8 Classic for 3 years now.
    1. This type of scope is not for Astrophotography- I have had OK results using a Iphone to capture Moon craters and Sun spots, Venus transit. Planets are hard because everything is moving pretty fast through the eyepiece.
    2. Cooling fan does help and works great on the XT8, Orion sells one that screws in to the back of the OTA. You will feel the air move out of the tube when using the fan on the XT8. I have now transfered the fan to my XT10g. The fan will not act as a gyro.
    3. So you have a Barlow and a 25MM (barlowed 14.5MM). I believe a 12MM (barlowed 6MM) and a 32MM 2 inch would help you. I ended up getting a zoom, but the 32MM will help you GREATLY since you are looking for objects manually- I used it as a "Finder Eyepiece".
    4. A Telrad will help you a lot with finding your way around the night sky. I took off my Red Dot Finder and just mounted this. They have Telrad charts that show were to place your scope using the rings on the Telrad as your guide, along with my 32MM, I could find just about anything in a couple of minutes.

    Be patient with your XT8, its like learning to drive car with a stick vice a automatic when you dont have GOTO. It is a great feeling when you find something on your own. I remember at Star Parties everyone with their GOTO and me pushing my Dob around keeping up with them. I would joke, in the event of a power failure or dead batteries- I could keep on trucking. Thats one thing I like about my new XT10g- the main reason I bought was because of the tracking-everything stays in the eyepiece. I still am able to push my dob around to find things manually- which is sometimes quicker or if its tricky to find I still have the Goto. First mod I did was take off the Red Dot Finder and placed a Telrad on it!
    Tim
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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    The most important benefit of a fan is that it delays dew formation by preventing the mirror temperature from dropping below ambient air temperature.

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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Thanks Guys! I will look into getting a fan and mounting it on the back of the mirror. Anyone know if it is possible to upgrade to the capabilities of the XT8g using parts purchased from Orion?
    Last edited by Jammer; 02-17-2013 at 06:30 PM.

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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Is there any issue with dust getting sucked down (or up?) the OTA and collecting on the mirror? It would seem like a certainty to some degree.

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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Quote Originally Posted by Jammer View Post
    Thanks Guys! I will look into getting a fan and mounting it on the back of the mirror. Anyone know if it is possible to upgrade to the capabilities of the XT8g using parts purchased from Orion?
    Orion is picky about selling extra parts, replacement or new. IRC they purchase their telescopes complete and do not stock spare parts. I seriously doubt they will sell you parts to upgrade your scope...HOWEVER!!!!! you should look up here on the forums the push-to system that several of us dob owners use. It consists of an azimuth circle that you affix to your base and a digital level for your altitude. Personally I think this system is just as good (maybe better) than Orion's "i" system.
    willny likes this.
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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Quote Originally Posted by neal_mlc View Post
    Orion is picky about selling extra parts, replacement or new. IRC they purchase their telescopes complete and do not stock spare parts. I seriously doubt they will sell you parts to upgrade your scope...HOWEVER!!!!! you should look up here on the forums the push-to system that several of us dob owners use. It consists of an azimuth circle that you affix to your base and a digital level for your altitude. Personally I think this system is just as good (maybe better) than Orion's "i" system.
    Is this a setting circle that you're referring to? I'm definitely interested in adding something like this.
    -Will
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    Default Re: Newbie dumb question about fan for XT8 classic

    Quote Originally Posted by KeithBC View Post
    The most important benefit of a fan is that it delays dew formation by preventing the mirror temperature from dropping below ambient air temperature.
    Keith, thank you for this reply. I had not considered a fan as I keep my XT8 in an unheated shed but now I may add one should dew become an issue. I had not considered that problem before.
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