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Thread: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

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    Post 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??



    Well Im burned out from the obsesion at lookig for the perfect scope. I seem to be constantly gravetating to small refractors that are cheap . I am a low budget amateur astronomer . Who is looking for the best deal for my situation. I do alot of binocular astronomy 7x50 and 11x80 binoculars . I have owned several scope but always seem to lust for a scope that would be an extension of my filed of view of the binoculars yet I can change the eypieces for varied magnifications.

    I seem to keep going back to the Orion st 80. For 200 bucks I can have a scope with a good reputation-for a cheap scope, thats well not an apo but im not looking for an apo Im lookig for a cheap scope that will be like a single tube of a pair of binoculars with a 24 mm 68 degree eye piece it will be like a single tube of a pair of 11x80 s at 20 x power with a 3 .1 degree field of view . Thats exactly what I am looking for wide field low power sweeping of the universe . I already have a camera tripod that will support it with ease and a few eyepieces I will be on my way maybe a finder scope or some thing but at 3.1 degrees who needs a finder scope . Many people have modified the hell out of this little scope flocked the tube and dew cap , took the focuser apart and striped it of china grease and applied new grese and dialed in the focuser. I can always buy a GSO focuser with the slow focus ability for 170 bucks . Then I can use 2 inch eye pieces that will bring me to 5 degree fields of view perfect for deep sky stuff and star hopping. Could vary well be the perfect scope for me.

    The other big thing is I live in an apartment with no yard in bad light polution I need to bring a scope or binoculars to a dark site to do viewing of the stars . The 80 mm size would be perfect, ease to store and transport, a blast to use, good for a quick session at 4 am . I am a baker I get hyper early on days off astronomy would fit perfect into my schedualat 4 am . Then pack it up and go home or watch the sun rise. Then get brekfast.

    Maybe I might still be intrested in a 4 ich scope I have always wanted a 4 inch refractor sinece the very beginning and I wonder if I will out grow the 80 mm size in a hurry . There are a few 4 inch refractors that fit my budget at 300/400ish for the scope and the alt az mount at f/5 or f/6 thats still really wide fields of view but I will have 20 mm more aprature , on an alt az mount built for astronomy hmmmmm?? What to do, im not in a super rush to buy a scope but seem to gravitate to these types of scopes wide fields of view, low power and ease to transport and use. So should I go with a 80 mm or a 102 mm refractor I know in the future it would be fun as money permits to swap out the focusers and flock the tube and dial in a cheap scope then if I get crazy into viewing the skies I might buy an ioptron alt az or some type of equetorial GOTO mount could be alot fo fun and I can do alot with a scope like this either the 80 m or the 102 mm scope .

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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Lunar Mike View Post
    The other big thing is I live in an apartment with no yard in bad light polution I need to bring a scope or binoculars to a dark site to do viewing of the stars . The 80 mm size would be perfect, ease to store and transport, a blast to use, good for a quick session at 4 am . I am a baker I get hyper early on days off astronomy would fit perfect into my schedualat 4 am . Then pack it up and go home or watch the sun rise. Then get brekfast.
    Mike, don't let being an apartment dweller turn you off from observing at home. While optimal dark skies are nice, there's a lot to be said for setting up in urban skies - mainly, more observing time. I'm in the same boat. No yard. The apartment steps led right on onto the sidewalk. When in Rome...

    That's where I setup....right on the sidewalk. I clip a spray-painted-black piece of cardboard onto the No Parking sign to block out one street light and I'm good to go. Also, scope out your local area. There may be a park or other area without the annoying point source light from street lights...you can't escape the light dome. You just need a place that obscures street lights. You'd be surprised. I found one a 1/4 mile from a shopping center - bright parking lights and all - but a long row of trees completely blocks all street light.

    Dark sites are ideal and I try to get to mine as often as possible. However a 35 minute one trip can be a drag during the week when I need is 'scope time'. Little gems around the neighborhood or even the front sidewalk are good enough for the most part. Clear Skies.
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    I have a cheap 80mm and I think the view is meh. I have a 98mm apo and could look through that all day.

    Or I just bought a william optics zenithstar 61mm.

    I'd rather look throught that than the 80mm too.
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    A good scope regardless of size will keep you looking up for years,
    A bad scope regardless of size will keep you frustrated for years.

    Pick a decent grade scope in whatever size suits your budget and you will not regret using it.
    AbbN, Leveye, bladekeeper and 2 others like 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
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    Ya gotta keep this Apo/
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    Covering No Parking signs with black cardboard, great idea
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    The ST80 / Meade versions are great scopes
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    ST80, GREAT scope, I've got three of them. 102mm scope, GREAT scope, I've got two of them. I've even got an ST90, GREAT scope that fits right in between. You will enjoy any of them. I would look for a used 102SLT, GREAT scope on a GREAT portable mount. If you can put $400 down on an achro, the AR102 is truly a VERY, VERY good scope.

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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Ylem View Post
    Covering No Parking signs with black cardboard, great idea
    Paint it Matte Black. The Gloss Finish defeats the purpose. Don't ask how I know.
    Leveye and ProfEclipse like this.
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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    Thanks every body I think you all made great points. I think after weeks of deliberation as to what scope fits my budget I think Im gona go with a 80 mm scope short tube of some brand on an alt az mount .This way I will have a single binocular tube I can change the power on and it will be extremly portable. 80 mm is a good size for me and I can save a bundle by putting it on my camera tripod for now . This will be a good scope as my intrest and needs increase it will grow with me . I can change the focuser , get better eyepieces, a better mount and such and it willl always be portable. If size were no big deal I probably would get an 8 or 10 inch computerized dob but portability is my main thing and to have a scope thats cheap and small is better than no scope at all. This way I can put money into good to great eyepieces , then a mount I can do alot with . Then maybe after I get some experience I can move into other optical tubes as my needs permit thanks for all the advice Mike .
    Ozman13, morrbru, Gabby76 and 1 others like this.

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    Default Re: 80 mm or 102 mm refractor wide field short tubes which should I go for ??

    Quote Originally Posted by Ylem View Post
    The ST80 / Meade versions are great scopes
    Absolutely! Mine gets a lot of use even though it's my smallest scope!

    Abb

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