View Full Version : "grab and go" scope

2003-Aug-20, 06:27 AM
This question is similar that posted by zeus ...I am a newbie-I have been doing the binoculars and sky map thing for a while-say 12 months- and want to get more oomph for quick backyard viewing, so what would be ideal would be a light weight very portable, easy to store scope that can be instantly put to work...is this a dream? :(

I don't want a massive dobsonian which can't be carted around and has big set up time, however unfortunately the cost of even the low end Meade (ETX) and Celestron in Australia appears to be second mortgage territory...

Would anyone be able to advise me on a suitable scope?

2003-Aug-20, 08:45 PM
For a grab and go scope I certainly enjoy the portability of my Orion Apex 127mm Maksutov. I mount it on a Bogen (Manfrotto) tripod. Very light, quick and easy scope to us. Drawback is cool down time inherent in a Maksutov. Can't recall the price but was half that of a Meade. Do believe these are available worldwide under various brands, evidently made in China by Synta. They also offer a 102mm and a 90mm. You can see them at Orion Telescopes (http://www.telescope.com)

2003-Aug-21, 06:08 AM
Hi Seeker from a fellow Aussie,

I would recommend a 8" dob, either Meade or a Celestron, or if you can get one a Orion.

During a comparative test a few years ago the 8" Orion came out the best.

These will give you great entry level Ooomph in the back yard and should be light enough and easy enouh to set up quickly.

Any other scope for the same price will reduce the optical capacity and boost the investment in mount, tripod or optics cost.

The dob is simply the biggest bang for bucks.



2003-Aug-21, 11:11 AM
At least part of the answer is going to depend on how you get to your observing site. Personally, I like my 10" dob. From throwing the van in park to observing is 10 minutes, 15 max. The longer time is usually due to explaining what I'm doing with the portable cannon! L :lol: L

But, for fast setup, I don't think you can beat a dob. Just throw the base on the ground, and slip the altitude bearings into the slots. The 6, 8, and 10" models are not too big to be handled by one person. However, you might need to take a look at your transportation as well. A 10" OTA isn't gonna fit in the back seat of an Escort! :blink:

Charles Bell
2003-Aug-23, 12:14 AM
I bought a set of large astronomical binoculars from Apogee.


I got a good deal on a set of 25x100 mm binoculars for around $250.
They are heavy though. I like reclining on my lounge chair on the back porch, peering up in the sky and looking for whatever I can find. There's no setup time at all. It's like a hand held low to medium power telescope. I saw the Andromeda galaxy and star clusters in Cassiopeia the other morning. Mars is easy to spot. Having a binocular view is easy on your eyes.
These binoculars are just right for scanning for comets.
We have one coming into view this fall, 2P/Encke