I have a question, but first this:

Bought a 300mmx76mm telescope on a Dobsonian mount last weekend for daughter 2 (10) – she’s been asking for one for a couple of years and we were round the corner from Jessops, so why not.

It came with 20mm and 6mm 1.25” eyepieces and a 3x Barlow lens, and ‘adequate’ assembly instructions. Though, it has to be said, the weather has been pretty miserable since the purchase, we’ve found it resolves stuff pretty well through windows, e.g. the houses and electricity pylon 1.2 miles away, and focusses well enough to bring stars to almost a single point. (The moon’s a bit too high here right now.)

Here’s the awkward bit: I’m *already* considering getting extra stuff for it:

  • a smartphone adapter (seen one for <£10.)
  • replacing the 5x cross-hair finder scope (for £30) – the stock one is adjusted by three thumbscrews around a plastic ring!
  • adding a 32mm or 40mm eyepiece (for £30) – the standard kit’s view angle is too narrow to see much especially given the crap finder.
  • and a 45 or 90 degree diagonal adapter (for £20.)

(I’m rationalising spending 3x the scope cost on the extra bits by saying we’ll be able to use them on a better scope, you know, one with an equatorial mount.)

That question then.

Is this normal?

This post was originally queued up in early February 2020.

I found out it isn’t normal, not really. The new hobby went off the boil a bit as we adapted to lighter spring & summer nights and the coronavirus lockdown.

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