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portlander47
2004-Mar-25, 02:08 AM
I have always loved looking at the stars since childhood. Never did anything but gaze upward...now I have this yearning to learn so much more.
But god forbid I will become so obsessed that I will be like those bingo ladies toting thier daubers in funny bags to the nearest bingo hall. I can just see my husbands face when I tell him I want to go to the local star gazing party and just maybe, learn how to build a telescope. Okay you all, JUST how much time do you REALLY spend on this ? And , is it very, very expensive to build a modest telescope? And, are complete newbies welcome here, or are we pains in your necks?

AGN Fuel
2004-Mar-25, 02:58 AM
Welcome to the BABB, portlander47! :D \:D/


I have always loved looking at the stars since childhood. Never did anything but gaze upward...now I have this yearning to learn so much more.

Good for you!


But god forbid I will become so obsessed that I will be like those bingo ladies toting thier daubers in funny bags to the nearest bingo hall. I can just see my husbands face when I tell him I want to go to the local star gazing party and just maybe, learn how to build a telescope.

I have no idea what a dauber is, or how one is toted, but I venture to suggest that astronomy is far more interesting and rewarding! :lol:


Okay you all, JUST how much time do you REALLY spend on this?

I try to observe at least once a week, weather permitting.


And , is it very, very expensive to build a modest telescope?

It is probably cheaper to buy than build. Is your interest in observing or in building? Grinding a mirror can be very time consuming & laborious.


And, are complete newbies welcome here, or are we pains in your necks?

Anyone with an interest in astronomy is most welcome here, regardless of experience! :D . This is unquestionably the best run and friendliest Chat Board that I have seen. Also, the level of expertise of some of the people here is quite amazing!

Brady Yoon
2004-Mar-25, 03:07 AM
Hello, and welcome! :D

I have always loved looking at the stars since childhood. Never did anything but gaze upward...now I have this yearning to learn so much more.
Ha me too. I'm only 14 but I've enjoyed astronomy since around kindergarten.

Okay you all, JUST how much time do you REALLY spend on this ?
Well, I read book and magazine articles every time I can, and I come to site every day, and I do serious observing once a week.

And , is it very, very expensive to build a modest telescope?
It might not be more expensive, but it is definitely much harder. Making a good reflecting telescope is very hard, but a refractor is pretty much close to impossible.

And, are complete newbies welcome here, or are we pains in your necks?
Of course you're welcome. I'm still a newbie and everyone was at one time.

George
2004-Mar-25, 03:20 AM
I have always loved looking at the stars since childhood. Never did anything but gaze upward...now I have this yearning to learn so much more.
But god forbid I will become so obsessed that I will be like those bingo ladies toting thier daubers in funny bags to the nearest bingo hall. I can just see my husbands face when I tell him I want to go to the local star gazing party and just maybe, learn how to build a telescope. Okay you all, JUST how much time do you REALLY spend on this ? And , is it very, very expensive to build a modest telescope? And, are complete newbies welcome here, or are we pains in your necks?

Welcome aboard the board. =D>

Just jump on in here and enjoy the fun. They haven't tossed me out yet so you're bound to do just fine.

You might want to tell us what you want to do with the scope and your budget range. There are plenty here that will give you great adviice.

portlander47
2004-Mar-25, 03:31 AM
The reason I asked about building a telescope is that I saw that an old guy named John Dobson will be holding a workshop next month in nearby Battleground ,WA. Apparently he is credited with starting the first 'sidewalk astronomy' group that allowed anyone passing by an opportunity to view close-ups of the night sky. He makes "Dobsonian telescopes' (?)and the class is reasonably cheap. I think I will check it out. At the least I would meet others who know A LOT more than I. And who knows. maybe my old hubby might enjoy this too. I KNOW it would impress him if I built ANYTHING :o

George
2004-Mar-25, 03:46 AM
The reason I asked about building a telescope is that I saw that an old guy named John Dobson will be holding a workshop next month in nearby Battleground ,WA. Apparently he is credited with starting the first 'sidewalk astronomy' group that allowed anyone passing by an opportunity to view close-ups of the night sky. He makes "Dobsonian telescopes' (?)and the class is reasonably cheap. I think I will check it out. At the least I would meet others who know A LOT more than I. And who knows. maybe my old hubby might enjoy this too. I KNOW it would impress him if I built ANYTHING :o

8) That should be the guy!

Check out more...>>>. John Dobson (http://quanta-gaia.org/dobson/) <<<

I would consider a local astronomy club, too.

Charlie in Dayton
2004-Mar-25, 04:01 AM
..you're going to a workshop put on by JOHN DOBSON???

This is like getting tuneup tips from Henry Ford, or airline recommendations from Orville'n'Wilbur...

Get a picture of you'n'him!! Scan it in and post it here! And take lots and lots and lots and lots of notes!

portlander47
2004-Mar-25, 04:20 AM
I checked out the link about Dobson..wow, whats he doing with a bunch of us NEWBIES?
Very small article in todays Oregonian..'Telescope pioneer offers Battle Ground classes.' Heck, thats just across the river a few miles.
I also have checked out Rose City Astronomers Club web site. They hold regular gatherings and are pretty popular with families. I have a lot to look forward to learning!

aurora
2004-Mar-25, 04:34 AM
I checked out the link about Dobson..wow, whats he doing with a bunch of us NEWBIES?
Very small article in todays Oregonian..'Telescope pioneer offers Battle Ground classes.' Heck, thats just across the river a few miles.
I also have checked out Rose City Astronomers Club web site. They hold regular gatherings and are pretty popular with families. I have a lot to look forward to learning!

The Rose City Astronomers have an incredibly active group, observing sessions going on in various places just about every weekend.

Looks to me like a great group to hook up with. (I don't live nearby, but have spoken to a few of their members in the past).

Psi-less
2004-Mar-25, 04:35 AM
The Mad Monk in Battleground??!? I think I better see if I can get there--I'd love to meet the guy and I'd love to try and make a homebrew scope. We've got a 10" Dob and both Mike and I spend as much time as possible at it. Now, if we could just get these Washington skies to cooperate a little.... [-X
And to answer one of your questions: you can spend as much or as little time at the telescope as you want. But you'll find yourself getting the urge to see "just one more thing" more and more strongly! Enjoy yourself and your husband may surprise you with how much he enjoys it as well. We're talking about becoming a two-scope family (well, at least we talk about it during those disagreements over who was hogging the scope more).

Psi-less

Ut
2004-Mar-25, 04:42 AM
I checked out the link about Dobson..wow, whats he doing with a bunch of us NEWBIES?

It's what he does. He's one of those guys that likes to bring the things he loves directly to the public. It's far more effective than NASA press conferences.

AGN Fuel
2004-Mar-25, 05:38 AM
The reason I asked about building a telescope is that I saw that an old guy named John Dobson will be holding a workshop next month in nearby Battleground ,WA.......

:o :o :o :o :o :o

I can't wait to get to basketball training tonight to see if an old guy named Michael Jordan might drop by to scrimmage! :lol:

What an incredible introduction to the hobby of astronomy!!

George
2004-Mar-25, 01:55 PM
...and what's this "too old" stuff? There are plenty of folks here in their 50's. (You have to be patient but they will eventually admit it). :)

We live in a wondrous dynamic, full-color, hi-res observable and glorius universe today. Enjoy!

gethen
2004-Mar-25, 02:18 PM
...and what's this "too old" stuff? There are plenty of folks here in their 50's. (You have to be patient but they will eventually admit it). :)

We live in a wondrous dynamic, full-color, hi-res observable and glorius universe today. Enjoy!
Quite right. I'm 53 and have had a lifelong interest in astronomy, but only obtained my telescope within the last couple of years. And I'd rather be an old lady with an 8" Newtonian case over my shoulder than an old lady with a dauber (even if I do occasionally need help toting the heavy things.) The youngsters here are quite tolerant of us old folks. :wink:

Psi-less
2004-Mar-25, 03:58 PM
What's too old??! :o I was 44 when I got my first "real" telescope last year. I got one for Christmas when I was 12, but it was a very low power, rickety tripod special--ugggh! Just keeping focused on a big target like the moon was a challenge and I finally gave up on it. Now the time spent is limited only by (winter) losing all feeling in fingers and toes and (spring/summer) by obtaining 10 or more mosquito bites. And by uncooperative weather. :evil: You really can get by on a lot less sleep than you think you need.....

Psi-less

tlbs101
2004-Mar-25, 05:33 PM
I am 45, and as you can see, a newbie.

I have always been fascinated at stargazing. I can spend hours just looking up when I am in dark sky areas (camping, travelling at night away from city lights -- but I stop my car first).

Last month, I made the mistake of buying a cheap telescope, but actually made one 2 weeks later (bought a 8" F8 mirror kit and assembled the whole thing one evening). I love it! Weather permitting, I have been out an average of twice per week. Any more than that and my wife gets upset.

There are still a couple of things I have to do to my homemade scope to fix it so my wife can get in on the action, also (more stable mount, reinforcing the tube, baffling the tube), but when I do I think she will become as interested as I am.

George
2004-Mar-25, 05:35 PM
Last month, I made the mistake of buying a cheap telescope, but actually made one 2 weeks later (bought a 8" F8 mirror kit and assembled the whole thing one evening). I love it! Weather permitting, I have been out an average of twice per week. Any more than that and my wife gets upset.

Cool 8) . Was there a fair savings in doing this?

skrap1r0n
2004-Mar-25, 05:38 PM
I'm 33 and just beginning to get the fever.

Whether or not you you decide to get into it GO TO THE WORKSHOP! I mean what an opportunity. It would almost be like having Carl Sagan holding a college algebra tutorial session.

portlander47
2004-Mar-26, 01:48 AM
Okay,,, no one is ever too OLD to learn something new! And after reading all I can find about NEWBIE astronomers I realize that just being in the same room with John Dobson would be an opportunity many wouldn't miss. Now I am starting to think I will be like a pre-schooler that is sitting in on a college level class! Talked to hubby about this new yearning and he thinks it's a great idea! He's really excited when I say anything about BUILDING something(this is a man who loves his tools :D ) Only thing is now I will have to go on those dreaded camping trips of his~~(away from the city lights). Oh, I think the man is going to love this. If he can get me to go camping he knows he WONT have to cook :wink:
Glad to see lot's of other newcomers. I was so excited to read about skrapirons 1st night out...and to hear how cool HE thought it was. Lot's to look forward to. Thank you all for encouraging comments.
Just an aside..I can hardly believe the number of people on this BB! Thousands....sure glad I found it.

SpaceTrekkie
2004-Mar-26, 02:28 AM
I have always loved looking at the stars since childhood. Never did anything but gaze upward...now I have this yearning to learn so much more.

I have been interested (to the degree i am now) for about two years...but ahve always loved to go out and just stare up!


Okay you all, JUST how much time do you REALLY spend on this ?

Hmmm...i read A LOT and try to observe 2-3 times a week...i tend to get only 1-2 though becasue of the weather this time of year! and i spend about half my life on this site it seems.

And as was said before you are NEVER too old to learn something new!My at 14 have the benefit of still being fairly new to the world and easily learning something new everyday! Pursuing to learn is ALWAYS a good thing.

-ST