All of the dueling, flaming etc aside, seriously, I think perhaps some of you (not all) have never actually used a quality 60mm to 80mm refractor telescope. The comments in general simply do not fit with reality and my experience with these types of telescopes and simply repeat urban legend as if it were fact.
First, the Wally World, department store telescope purchased in the last 20 years or so, yes, they are pretty poor, some more so than others and I don't mean that as universal of the genre, there could be exceptions. Unfortunately most of these inexpensive, sub 150 dollars telescopes either had poor optics, poor mounts, poor accessories or all of these and resulted in frustration for beginners who did not know better. That is true. I happen to have some of these in my collection usually purchased to scavenge a part from or to experiment with and I get them on CL and usually pay little to nothing for them.
Recently I purchased a complete Jason 454 simply to get the dew shield from. This was a complete telescope purchased by the owner in 1999 he said. It was pretty junky, plastic lens cell, plastic focuser, plastic diagonal, plastic eyepieces, plastic leg mounts, undersized mount, on and on. If this is what the OP has, I sympathize with him/her completely.
OK, side by side against my Unitron 114, Carton DIY and my hot rod Tasco it is immediately evident the Jason is out of it's league. The Jason simply does not provide the views the others do even with the same diagonal and eye piece installed. The contrast is less, stars are not concentric out of focus, the plastic lens cell is unstable, the plastic focuser is out of alignment. CA is severe in the shorter focal length and there is a lot of glare, not to mention the whole thing is unstable and wiggly to the extreme.
This is why I brought up the older 60mms. They are all metal, metal focuser, metal lens cell (often collimateable) and superior accessories and yes some of those old .965 eye pieces were not that bad compared to the extra cheap 1.25 stuff delivered with cheap scopes today. No, .965 is gone, you get a department store scope today and it has 1.25 eye pieces that are WORSE than the .965 units of yesteryear, not even close, and the diagonals are simply horrid.
Most of the 60mm refractor scopes today have inferior optics, the FL is too short for an achro format. These are not the instruments that were being sold in the 50s and 60s by any measure which were typically f15.6 to f 16.7 range. CA was much better controlled in these as a result.
Now, if I were to spend the time to remove the objective from the Jason and collimate it, darken the lens edges, paint the shiny black plastic to a flat black paint, flock the tube properly, replace the plastic focuser and cell with metal pieces, replace the GEM, I dunno, I am sure it would perform much better but still have severe CA due to the short FL.
Second, no, the old classics from the 50s and 60s were not perfect, their mounts were not as stable as compared to quality equipment today, a 60mm scope is still a very small scope then and now certainly but to compare a Unitron from 1955 to a Jason bought in Wall Mart is not realistic and to dismiss all 60mm telescopes as department store junk is not productive. No, small telescopes purchased today at a the usual box stores are not equal to what was once available and to get that same quality today, metal construction, self damping wooden legs, at least semi useful GEM mounts, wooden storage boxes and accessories that mostly worked and were actual metal and optical glass is going to run around 1,000 dollars and at least 500 dollars and probably more and in that price range there are some instruments that could be useful.
If a person wanted a small refractor and cannot afford a quality new instrument it could pay to cruise CL or eBay for an older, much older, but well maintained instrument. Of course, I see prices seeming to escalate for some of these classic Japanese refractor telescopes, so I don't know if it really is a bargain anymore like it was some years back compared to purchasing a new plastic Taiwan scope.
In the refractors forum, I suppose it would be to much to ask is it could be possible to discuss refractor telescopes without condemning an entire class of telescope wholesale and recommending a set of binoculars as a universal solution. Maybe, just maybe, a small refractor is the solution for some people.
Unitron 62mm Model 114 62mm, Celestron 5.5 inch Comet Catcher SN, JSO 125mm 12B Cat, Carton 60mm f16.7, Tasco 60mm f11.7, Scope 76mm f 15.7, SYW 60mm f15, Sears (T) 50mm f15, Wollensak 5.5 inch f14.0 Mak