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Thread: New Telescope Curse? What New Telescope Curse? 2007/2/11 UT

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2003

    New Telescope Curse? What New Telescope Curse? 2007/2/11 UT

    I now own a "pre-owned" 8" f/6 Starsplitter Tube Dob which brings my personal collection of telescopes to an even dozen. (A few of them are going to have to go now!) This scope, which is no longer available, features a 2" JMI Crayford focuser, a rotatable and flocked OTA, "virtual counterweight" springs, and a Carl Zambuto mirror with a 0.990 Strehl ratio and a 1/24 wave peak to valley wavefront error. I plan on adding an 8x50 finder scope. I picked it up at Skies Unlimited near Pottstown on Saturday afternoon and, despite the legendary new telescope curse, spent over six very chilly (13 degrees Fahrenheit) hours observing with it on Saturday night at a local dark sky site.

    During that time I viewed dozens of deep-sky objects (including carbon stars, binary and multiple stars, asterisms, star clusters, reflection nebulae, emission nebulae, planetary nebulae, and galaxies) that night along with Saturn. M42 and its environs were quite beautiful through my 19 and 35mm Tele Vue Panoptics (64 and 35x respectively) and 13mm Tele Vue Nagler type 6 (94x) and even held up well at 243x (5mm Nagler type 6). Other favorite views of the night included M35 and NGC 2158, M46 (and NGC 2438) and M47, M51 and NGC 5195, M81 and M82, M104, NGC 2903, NGC 3242 (the Ghost of Jupiter), and the Double Cluster (NGC 869 and 884) and Stock 2. The 35mm Panoptic provided me with an expansive, almost two degree true field of view.

    Saturn, which was at opposition, looked better than I've ever seen it before through an 8" aperture with the outstanding exception of one of the few 206mm Astro-Physics Starfire EDF apochromats ever manufactured. The seeing was steady enough at one point to allow me to use 487x (the 5mm Nagler type 6 and a 2x Celestron Ultima Barlow lens). The image was more than acceptable at that high magnification. The Cassini division was obvious as were a couple of southern hemisphere cloud belts and the Crepe ring.

    The Zambuto mirror appears to be a very good one indeed. I hope to use this scope in conjunction with the 80mm f/7.5 Vixen ED80Sf refractor that I purchased in December for a tune-up Messier marathon this month. Hopefully, the coming snow storm won't throw a meterological monkey wrench into those plans.

    Dave Mitsky

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    WA state, USA - Seattle area
    Nice! And you didn't even have to wait through weeks of lousy weather before being able to try out the new scope. I envy your steady seeing conditions.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Maybe it only applies to new scopes then. When I got my pre-owned 10" it was clear as it could be for a summer night. Had a great time looking at Mars, during it's closest approach, and other stuff I'd never seen before.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Here's a photo of my "new" telescope.

    Dave Mitsky
    Attached Images Attached Images

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