Buying a Telescope ?         ... Slow down ...




... now you wish to purchase a Telescope? NOOOO - do not do it, just yet - hold your horses and your wallet!

Do not get your hopes up about thinking of getting images or observing as good as the Hubble images - just forget that!

First of all, being in a urban area your night sky will be more likely to be light polluted and reduce the chance to see the faintest objects.

Second, the neighbours' PIR 'blooming' lights which mostly waste energy and illuminate the sky and not the ground [!]- remember to agree with your neighbour about them not being used while you are observing and possibly convince them to change the type of light too - talk about the wasted energy, it may help.

Also, generally most people fit those lights on their building, while it may help to have them fitted on a out building or extension (like a kitchen side wall) and point the other way around or side ways and 'down' !

You will be amazed by how much you can see in the night sky, even in polluted areas using a few tricks and possibly some filters.

Now, buying a telescope.

1. how much can you spend? if you have less than £. 200 you better off buying large binoculars made for Astronomy!

2. if you have a budget of £.200 or more, you may be able to get decent 'small' diameter telescopes - like a decent 110mm or so

3. if you have a budget of around £. 500, well you have to ways here: either go for a good 150mm Refractor (mostly for planetary) or go for a standard quality Dobsonian manual Skywatcher Telescope of possibly 200/250mm in aperture
With a Dobsonian of that size but lower quality, will give you a broad range of objects to watch with a lower quality image, but well sufficient to enjoy the night sky at high magnification.

You will be surprised at how large and good images you could get at high magnification after a series of observation.
After you have started to get the hang of it, you will be able to observe at the right times, the right objects ,with the right observing conditions.

The more you get experience, the more you will fine tune your observations and the more accurate they will be - using the same standard quality telescope.

Do not rush and buy a telescope, especially from Toy shops or any other shop but a established Astronomy Telescope Retailer!

But, please remember to start with Binoculars first - 8x40 or 10x50 - before you splash out your cash.

Binoculars 10x8

You need to get the hang of it first and broadly learn where everything is, what it is called and to do that you will need to buy books - a yearly published astronomical guide is a good start and a Philips adjustable map of the night sky too with a RED light torch - you can always buy a RED plastic document pouch or bag and cut a circle of it (or two!) and place it on top of a standard torch to make the light red - it is not perfect but it helps to see in the night sky without ruining your eye adaptation.

Sorry if I insist on binoculars, but it is the best way to learn fast and without spending too much initially.

Also, the binos will be a companion with the Telescope in the future. You will always use them anyway, more or less.
In fact I would suggest you to do a whole year with the binoculars and take them with you when you know you are going to stay overnight somewhere other than you house - you never know.

I suggest you to prepare a small bag with all you need and take it with you - keeping it in the car (most of us have a car these days).

It is a bit like a professional photographer, they always keep their camera in the car wherever they go, because you never know what could happen and you could get a wonderful shot that will make your career.

The same is with astronomy.


Mentioned Costs may vary with times [ obviously ]




Note: I will NOT be responsible for any injury or anything else possible [!] due to this script or anything else in this or other websites of mine - these are personal views that come from practical experience

Useful Links

Lunar Mission One

The above is a link to Lunar Mission One


The above is a link to ESA TV



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