Telescopes we have owned.
Half Meter F5.3 Dobsonian. Built by Murray Barber.
This telescope can be likened to the proverbial broom that's had six new heads and six new handles! The only remaining components left in current use are the mirors and the focuser. Taken at the Thetford Equinox star party when it was held at the Dower House. This telescope has the aperture to show deep sky objects in an almost photographic fashion. Objects such as the Veil Nebula are stunning. Much effort was put into getting as near a perfect mirror as possible so detail on the planets is also outstanding. It is equipped with a Sky Vector to acquire objects. Tony's 39.5cm telescope can be seen in the background.
Murray and Tony on top of the world! August 2002
'Roque de Los Muchachos',La Palma.altitude 2426m.
This picture was taken on the summit of La Palma in the Canaries. At this point we are higher than the ING observatories. This was our first trip to La Palma and we took our 14 inch dobsonian with us to do visual deep sky observing.The telescope was built by Murray and packed flat for transport on the airplane. (click on the picture to see how) We spent the whole night on the summit and had stunning views of many deep sky objects. A 14 inch was chosen since we needed no ladders but could maintain a reasonable f ratio. This telescope is so easy to use and gives great views.
| 39.5 cm f6 Dobsonian .
Built by Tony Gibbons.
Taken minutes after the 1st assembly (hence the work worn jeans). The mirror for this telescope was bought as a 16 inch. It was some time before I realised it was actually only just over 15.5 inches. I know the difference is academic but it annoyed me for years! It is an f6 making ladders a must to reach the eyepiece. It has been in use for some years now undergoing constant evolution rather than revolution. The long f ratio and small secondary mirror also ensure very good sharpness. It to is equipped with a Sky Vector to acquire objects.
with the Intes MN61 and webcam
Seen here is the Intes MN61 on an HEQ5 equatorial mount. Taken whilst imaging Jupiter, the Moon and Venus make a very attractive backdrop.
The MN61 is renowned for its superb sharpness and although only a 15cm telescope, used visually, it can challenge telescopes much larger and very much more expensive!
Because of its unusual Masutov-Newtonian optics it can also provide very low power wide fields. We have observed the whole of the Pleiades in one field of view and moments later Saturn, looking sharp enough to cut yourself on, at 360x magnification. A very versatile telescope.
|Murray + OMC 140 maksutov
and Skywatcher refractor.
This equipment was used extensively for the Mars opposition of 2003. The mount is an HEQ 5 which proved very capable of carrying both telescopes. The little OMC yields very sharp and contrasty images for its size. It is shown here coupled to a Panasonic camcorder. This arrangement produced the Mars image elsewhere on this site.
The OMC has a very long focal length and can make an ideal guidescope when using the 12cm f5 refractor for deep sky imaging. Conversely the refractor makes an ideal way of locating and centering the planets when using a webcam on the OMC. Due to duplication of equipment the OMC has been, reluctantly, sold on to a good home.
| 20cm SCT, 'fully loaded'
for a night of imaging.
A workhorse for many years this telescope is of english origin. The drive system is all home built and uses stepper motors. It is shown here on a massive permanent pier. The fork is detachable for use on a field tripod. It is shown here with a home built, liquid cooled CCD camera being readied for a nights imaging. This telescope is now in retirement but is pictured here because it was an important step in developing our interests.