Starsplitter Compact 14.5 in f/4.5

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Brand and Model:Starsplitter Compact 14.5 in f/4.5
Price ($USD):2000
Attributes: un-checked Go-To un-checked PEC
Aperture:368mm (14.5")
f Ratio:f/4.5
Focal Length:1657mm
Electric Power:No
Weight (lbs):75 lbs.
Dimensions (w/h/d):72X17X16
Description:A two truss tube dobsonian that either assembles or disassembles in 5 minutes. Nova optics 14.5" primary and 2.6" secondary mirror. 2" diameter truss tubes and Kydex light Baffle. It did not take digital setting circles. Some customization was possible,it was made for me with the focuser and tubes on the left hand side, instead of the standard right side configuration, and with an 8X50 Lumicon finder, in addition to a Telrad. In the original advertising, the Telrad, 2" Focuser and Light Shroud were optional upgrades. Mine came with a 2" Focuser, even though I didn't order it.

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Starsplitter Compact 14.5 in f/4.5
This telescope usually gets two comments from experienced observers, the first being of how ugly it is, and the second of what a remarkably good view it provides. My 9mm Nagler and 14mm Meade Ultrawide give very sharp, bright views of the sky. Just about all deep sky objects plotted in Uranometria, Millennium and Herald-Bobroff AstroAtlas are readily visible or detectable. The best views of Jupiter I have ever seen, have been with this telescope. However, unlike the higher power eyepieces, coma is very evident in my 40mm Konig and 20mm Erfle eyepieces. The telescope does have a couple of minor problems. It is heavy/awkward to lift and walk any distance.I have to use a pair of thick garden gloves, otherwise the handles start hurting my hands. Thus I would not recommend it for an office worker of small stature, or someone who has to go up and down a flight of stairs. Another problem is that, initially, it is easy to misassemble in the dark. The two truss tubes have to be on the focuser holder's rails, for proper assembly. When it is way out of collimation, the problem usually lies with this particular misassembly. Finally, in my early version of this telescope, I noticed that it would go slightly out of collimation, if I collimated it with a Cheshire in a vertical position, and then aimed the telescope near the horizon. This was solved by collimating it at an angle of 60 degrees. Phil Harrington's book mentions a problem with collimation arising from the mirror mount in the early versions, which has now been rectified. To sum up, this telescope delivers what I expected of it, is easy to assemble and transport, and will keep me happy for decades.

Overall Rating: 9
Weight: 1 (Unreliable Vote)
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