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Posts Made By: Doug Walton

March 14, 2007 07:16 PM Forum: Eyepieces

radians/pentax ?????

Posted By Doug Walton

I went with all Pentax XWs after years of Radian use. Over a few nights about a year ago, I spent a lot of time going back and forth repeatedly between some Radians and XWs, and to my eye, the Pentax EPs were sharper and more contrasty. The difference wasn't that big, but I thought it was enough.

March 14, 2007 07:21 PM Forum: Astro-Physics

Made in America-press release from AP

Posted By Doug Walton

I loved seeing Roland and Marj and their facility, and lusted after the mounts and the 160 they were showing. In fact, it may have rekindled my dormant desire to move away from big reflectors and over to refractor (or, in my dreams, AP Mak-Cass)-based imaging.

But God - how TV usually decides to totally dumb down whatever they are talking about is depressing. Ours is a country in a growing intellectual crisis.

Be that as it may, I want either an AP 160 or a 10" Mak-Cass, and preferably, I'd like one soon. grin Oh yeah - I'll take a nice 1200 mount too!


April 1, 2007 07:45 PM Forum: Reflectors

Through with Discovery Telescopes (Long)

Posted By Doug Walton

Kinda makes you want to only do business with guys with names like Rick, Dave, Carl, Ed, Rolando, Bob, Al, and a bunch of other good folks I can't think of the names of right now. You know the ones I'm talking about... :-)

April 10, 2007 07:54 AM Forum: Reflectors

High performance visual viewing machine

Posted By Doug Walton

IMO, Starmaster and Obsession with built-in tracking would be good choices. StarStructure too, and probably some others that either I'm forgetting or don't know of. A nice aftermarket cooling fan setup is available from Floyd Blue for the Starmasters. I'm spoiled by the performance and convenience of integrated dob tracking - I'd never want a scope again that doesn't have it. A proven, accurate, rigid scope structure, coupled with good-quality build, after-sale support, top-of-the-line primary and secondary mirrors, and integrated tracking are what I look for. Most scopes in this category come apart for decent portability.

BTW, there are many threads on this here and on the Starmaster and Obsession Yahoo boards.

April 10, 2007 07:56 AM Forum: Reflectors

April 11, 2007 09:23 PM Forum: Reflectors

Should there be a profit?

Posted By Doug Walton

I know Floyd is just offering a forum to discuss this, but this is really a dumb topic on so many levels, spurred on by a few ill-conceived posts from an earlier thread.

If a scope costs more than you are willing to spend, rationalize or justify it any way you want, and then go build/buy something else.

If you can afford the scope, you want the scope, and you are satisfied that the claims of quality are valid, then buy the scope.

If you are making scopes and/or mirrors for others, you can either make a profit (of your definition) or decide to make them in your spare time while you work at another job (or live on your retirement or investments). The market will let you know how you're doing.

Assertions that anyone is making a lot of money producing commercial dobs are not worth discussing.

June 21, 2007 06:18 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

Ap Fever question: 14.5" to 18"?

Posted By Doug Walton

Some thoughts - I'd first consider upgrading to a really nice secondary (say, a 1/30th fused quartz from Antares, to pick up some additional contrast. Then I'd baffle the back of mirror box, the UTA, and make sure I have a shroud that blocks light really well (some don't, but my replacement AstroSystems shroud does). Then I'd see if the 14.5" didn't show some additional performance - mine did. (But, at a truly super-dark sky site, the baffling/shroud stuff might not make a difference.)

If that wasn't enough, my first jump-up point from 14.5" would be 20", with 24" being a more desirable size. I wouldn't bother with moving from 14.5" to 18". There is a pretty good improvement from 14.5" to 20" though.

Good luck!

November 17, 2007 07:07 PM Forum: Equipment Talk

January 18, 2010 09:06 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

A-P 130 StarFire Gran Turismo Quandary

Posted By Doug Walton

... them more I am thinking that I should construct an argument (for my wife) that this scope is really a special investment instrument - one that is much safer than the market has been. Then I would have it down the road when it could be real handy. For me to use it now, I'd need things I don't have: a mount and some other stuff - I liquidated much of my astro gear a while back.

I appreciate your responses so far.

January 22, 2010 08:40 AM Forum: Equipment Talk

A-P 130 StarFire Gran Turismo Quandary

Posted By Doug Walton

I guess I'm just gonna pass on the scope to the next person on the list. I had fantastical visions of selling it for $2K-$3K more than the list price, but all things considered, I'm not gonna try to do that. Thanks for your suggestions.