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Batman
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  #2043517 25-Jun-2018 13:05
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Only ever get them as presents for the kids. Everybody ends up in tears every time. Why repeat? Maybe we get gifts coz we're people? We don't look like nice people afterwards though.




Involuntary autocorrect in operation on mobile device. Apologies in advance.


Gordy7
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  #2043526 25-Jun-2018 13:20
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I have often been fascinated with Ball Telescopes for their simplicity and portability...

 

http://www.bbastrodesigns.com/ballscopes/ballscopes.html

 

 

 

 





Gordy

 

My first ever network connection was a 1MHz AM crystal(OA91) radio receiver.


 
 
 
 


James Bond
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  #2043534 25-Jun-2018 13:34
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jonathan18: While I’ll keep an eye out on PriceMe for new models at a good price, and TM for s/h, can anyone advise me where may be other good places to look out for a decent Dobsonian scope at a good price? 

 

https://www.telescopes.net.nz/ - Have purchased one item here, no issues. They're based in Northland. (They don't appear to be showing up on PriceMe) - listed as the authorised resellers for a number of manufacturers.

 

https://www.astronz.nz/shop/ (formerly under the domain name astronomy.co.nz) owned by the Auckland Astronomical Society. Purchased from them a few times, very good overall.

 

https://blaxall.co.nz/ - NZ distributors for Meade Instruments and others, although I'm not sure if they sell directly to the public. They may be able to provide you with a stocklist for your area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


JaBZ
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  #2044037 26-Jun-2018 12:38
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James Bond:

 

jonathan18: While I’ll keep an eye out on PriceMe for new models at a good price, and TM for s/h, can anyone advise me where may be other good places to look out for a decent Dobsonian scope at a good price? 

 

https://www.telescopes.net.nz/ - Have purchased one item here, no issues. They're based in Northland. (They don't appear to be showing up on PriceMe) - listed as the authorised resellers for a number of manufacturers.

 

https://www.astronz.nz/shop/ (formerly under the domain name astronomy.co.nz) owned by the Auckland Astronomical Society. Purchased from them a few times, very good overall.

 

https://blaxall.co.nz/ - NZ distributors for Meade Instruments and others, although I'm not sure if they sell directly to the public. They may be able to provide you with a stocklist for your area.

 

 

 

 

Those are the places I know of too nowadays, there has been a lot of closed resellers/distributors in the past.

 

In terms of brands.  

 

I've currently got a Sky Watcher 10" collapsible Dob Goto scope.  A few years back I had to mail order it, there weren't many selling them online and at twice the price they are selling for now.

 

 





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jonathan18

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  #2044163 26-Jun-2018 15:21
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Thanks, guys, those links were useful; I'll keep an eye out over the next few months as hopefully something decent (and ideally a 10") will come up s/h on Trade Me, as my budget will certainly only extend to a new 8". (That's why I have sorted out what I'm looking for now, to maximise the chance of finding one before Xmas!).


invisibleman18
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  #2049851 5-Jul-2018 15:08
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@jonathan18

 

 

 

Sorry I hadn't got back to you. Have looked at the one I have in the shed and unfortunately don't have any details other than it having "Regent 15-60x60 No. 641554" written on it.

 


mdf

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  #2063753 27-Jul-2018 16:39
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I'm currently telescope shopping too. The kids (7 and 9) have also been into astronomy, but the bug really seems to have bitten in a big way after taking them to the Carter Observatory and seeing Saturn's rings and Jupiter's moons (and if I'm being honest, it wasn't just them. Saturn's rings were seriously something else). Mars is also looking really cool at the moment.

 

I've done some reading, but want to check some of my current thinking. The planets and the moon are our current focus (heh, pun). Stars have some interest, but deep field objects are a bit nebulous (heh, another pun) to be immediately interesting. We've got a decent sea view with ships going past and some terrestrial viewing might be a good thing too. 

 

I was therefore thinking a refractor telescope would be a better starting point? Apparently 50x magnification should be sufficient to start distinguishing Saturn's rings. 

 

I'm currently looking at the Celestron range since they seem reasonably available in NZ and well (enough) reviewed. But any comments on which model/series - so far I've identified Inspire and TravelScope. How do additional lenses/eyepieces work - is it like cameras that you have to match mounts, or are things more interchangeable?

 

I'm not worried about bulk/length (it won't travel too far), though would rather not have something that weighs a tonne.

 

I'm keen to keep the price reasonable at this stage - I'd rather spend $3-400 now and if they keep up their interest get something much better if the interest lasts longer than a year or two, rather than try and spend $6/7/800 now and hope it grows with their interest.

 

 


 
 
 
 


blakamin
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  #2063778 27-Jul-2018 17:33
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mdf:

 

 

 

I'm keen to keep the price reasonable at this stage - I'd rather spend $3-400 now and if they keep up their interest get something much better if the interest lasts longer than a year or two, rather than try and spend $6/7/800 now and hope it grows with their interest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not sure if they ship to NZ (edit: they do)

 

Australian Geographic often has Celestron on sale.

 

 

 

BUT WAIT FOR A SALE!

 

 

 

I got an Astromaster 70AZ for AUD$160 just for looking at paddle boats on the river (and roos in the paddock). It doubles as a good moon scope. The 90 would be even better. 

 

The beauty of Celestron is they're not reversed in their refractor scopes, so can be used terrestrial or astro.


jonathan18

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  #2063904 28-Jul-2018 08:57
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blakamin:

 

Not sure if they ship to NZ (edit: they do)

 

Australian Geographic often has Celestron on sale.

 

 

 

BUT WAIT FOR A SALE!

 

I got an Astromaster 70AZ for AUD$160 just for looking at paddle boats on the river (and roos in the paddock). It doubles as a good moon scope. The 90 would be even better. 

 

The beauty of Celestron is they're not reversed in their refractor scopes, so can be used terrestrial or astro.

 

 

Thanks for this - not only do they ship to NZ, but their delivery prices are seriously cheap: for the 6" Dobsonian I'm looking at (which can't be small as its focal length is 1200mm) is $15! Standard prices work out to be just a bit cheaper than in NZ, but hopefully their sale prices are decent.

 

I'd also liked to have had a scope that worked for terrestrial viewing as well, but it's a matter of working out what compromises one is happy with - and in the end I've decided I'd rather ensure a satisfactory astro experience for my boys, rather than risk getting a 'jack of all trades' scope. (the image from Dobsonians I understand will be upside down and reversed!) We've got a decent pair of binoculars which will cover the terrestrial need off anyway...


jonathan18

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  #2068780 6-Aug-2018 15:37
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Based off the advice I received on this thread, today I won an auction for a s/h 8” Dobsonian telescope for $400, and that includes an image reversing thingy (may make it easier for the kids to use?) and a camera adapter. So a pretty good deal I’m most happy with.

https://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=1722551107

Kind of early for an Xmas present, so it’ll just have to be a mid-year present for the boys. And, anyway, now is a far better time to be gazing at the sky than mid-summer...

Only problem is it’s in Hamilton and I live in PN, so it’s going to be a long drive this weekend to pick it up!

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