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Thread: Looking for a barlow

  1. #1
    Whiskeyjack's Avatar
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    Default Looking for a barlow



    It's been a few years since I posted here. Life got in the way of getting out with my son and his scope. In that time, we've bought property near Atikokan Ontario, just North of Quetico Provincial Park. The skies are beautifully dark. We just brought his scope out there last weekend now that we have a shed to store it in.
    I would like to get a Barlow lens to add to the scope (Apertura AD8). All we have currently are the standard lenses that came with it. We did manage to get a good look at Jupiter before the clouds came in on Saturday night. We lost a lot of blood to the mosquitoes, but it was worth it.
    The focal length/eye piece size math kind of hurts my head, so I'm just looking for advice on the best fit and quality. If I'm going to buy one, it might as well be good. If there are any other lenses that you would recommend for the scope, please let me know which as well. My son is interested in looking at anything in the sky, although the moon and planets are the biggest hit so far.
    This weekend we'll be going into the park for their astronomical nights and will hopefully learn how to find some of the objects we've been unable to so far.

    One issue we had was when looking at Jupiter through any lens except the 9mm in the extension tube, was that when looking at the planet, it appeared as a bright blob with the clear cross piece of the mirror support visible. What causes this?
    Apertura AD8

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    If money is not an object a lot of peeps swear by Televue barlows, but one might be wasted depending on the eyepieces you are going to be using. For run of the mill Plossls a 2x Orion Shorty will be more than adequate.

    https://www.amazon.ca/Orion-08711-Sh...ords=barlow+2x

    The issue you describe with Jupiter sounds like the image was not in focus.
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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Well, I'm no expert, but I can tell you what I enjoy and what makes my eyes happy. Most folks I've spoken with say that you get what you pay for, and generally, I think that is true. However, there are exceptions to that rule. High Point has an apochromatic barlow at a steal. Celestron's X-Cel is another excellent barlow at a great price. Personally, I don't shoot much higher than that, but my standards might be low. If it is clear and sharp, I am happy. If I save money to boot, I am thrilled.


    I also have the Orion Shorty mentioned above and I am happy with it.
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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Another option is the Baader Q barlow which I have and I'm very happy with how it performs
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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Quote Originally Posted by snooze View Post
    Another option is the Baader Q barlow which I have and I'm very happy with how it performs
    +1 for Baader Q barlow But David brought a valid point. Your optical chain is as good as the weakest link. What EPs do you use?

    Another issue is that Jupiter is just to bright. For 8" scope you either need good filter to control the glare or stop down the aperture.
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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigzmey View Post
    +1 for Baader Q barlow But David brought a valid point. Your optical chain is as good as the weakest link. What EPs do you use?

    Another issue is that Jupiter is just to bright. For 8" scope you either need good filter to control the glare or stop down the aperture.
    Thanks for all the very prompt replies! We just have the standard EPs that came with the scope. A 30mm (2") and 9mm plossl (1.25").
    I was thinking of picking up a barlow, and maybe a 6mm EP. That would get me to a max magnification of 400x I think?
    Apertura AD8

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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    I guess I should also mention, we have viewed Saturn, Neptune and Jupiter in town several times without issue. I think I had the issue with the cross visible, when we first got the scope, but my memory isn't the best.
    Apertura AD8

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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Quote Originally Posted by Whiskeyjack View Post
    Thanks for all the very prompt replies! We just have the standard EPs that came with the scope. A 30mm (2") and 9mm plossl (1.25").
    I was thinking of picking up a barlow, and maybe a 6mm EP. That would get me to a max magnification of 400x I think?
    400x is more than your scope can handle. I would aim for 200-250x on planets for good seeing, and half of that when viewing conditions are bad. I would just get a good quality 6mm EP for planets and skip barlow.

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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Don't bother with the Barlow for now. A magnification of x 400 is too much for this telescope.
    As for the cross in the view, it means you are not focused and seeing the small diagonal mirror and its support spider.
    Make sure you can move through focus from maximum to minimum (as far out and as far in) as possible.
    The 9 mm eyepiece on it's own should show you and your son everything that's possible.
    Bearing that in mind that better quality eyepieces will certainly improve your viewing. Most scopes are shipped with poorer quality eyepieces in the kit.
    I will leave eyepiece selection to members better informed on this than I.
    Otherwise

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    Default Re: Looking for a barlow

    Quote Originally Posted by goldstar View Post
    Don't bother with the Barlow for now. A magnification of x 400 is too much for this telescope.
    As for the cross in the view, it means you are not focused and seeing the small diagonal mirror and its support spider.
    Make sure you can move through focus from maximum to minimum (as far out and as far in) as possible.
    The 9 mm eyepiece on it's own should show you and your son everything that's possible.
    Bearing that in mind that better quality eyepieces will certainly improve your viewing. Most scopes are shipped with poorer quality eyepieces in the kit.
    I will leave eyepiece selection to members better informed on this than I.
    Otherwise
    I was pretty sure that I had a full range of motion on the focuser the second night, but between the darkness and 10,000 mosquitoes, I can't be sure. This weekend I'll pull it out in the day and go through everything and make sure it's going through the full motions. It has been about two years since we used the scope. On the plus side, my son spent about half an hour using the finder scope to locate specific stars and then looking at them through the scope. I only had to help him on the first one.
    I did also collimate the scope after the first nights viewing (we didn't see anything). It only needed a very slight adjustment to put the laser directly in the centre. I thought it was going to be way off.
    Apertura AD8

 

 
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