If you can, get yourself a Meade 16” Lightbridge Dobsonian telescope. This awesome piece of kit really is all the telescope you ever need, from the best regarded manufacturer.
The quality is fantastic, the images are stunning, and it’s about the biggest telescope that can be transported with relative ease. Bigger than this and you are looking at spending many thousands of dollars for a fixed position telescope, strictly for dedicated astronomers with lots of cash.
The Meade 16” Lightbride is a Newtonian Reflector telescope with an open truss design, meaning that light comes in the big 16” aperture in the ‘Head’, through an open section, to a mirror in a separate section. The image bounces off that mirror, back to the Head and reflected to the eyepiece.
The Head, Trusses, Mirror Drum, and stand can be dismantled from each other for transport and will fit into the back of a medium sized car. If bought from Amazon, this telescope comes complete with a wide angle eyepiece, viewfinder, and software with 10,000 objects in the database.
- Head. This section contains a secondary mirror for bouncing the image into the eyepiece. The eyepiece itself is a 2” series 4000 QX wide angle eyepiece with an exceptionally wide 70 degree apparent field of view.
- As with all the optics on this telescope, the surfaces are treated with aluminum coatings, and a special Magnesium Fluoride anti-scatter top coating for pin sharp, bright images. Focusing dials on the eyepiece housing are equipped with unique tension knobs and focus lock, giving total control over focusing.
- A 4 reticule LED viewfinder is attached to the Head. This high quality item makes finding objects easier, just align any of the 4 red cursors with the object you wish to view, and it will be visible through the eyepiece.
- The Mirror Drum contains both the primary mirror, and a battery powered cooling fan. The mirror is supported in 27 places to keep it absolutely stable, and the cooling fan is there to keep it at the optimum temperature, so that expansion in heat does not distort the mirror surface.
- This set up prevents the need for ‘collimation’, where you have to set and re-set the mirrors to line them up correctly. On telescopes of this size collimation can be quiet a difficult process, but as long as this telescope is set up correctly to start with, you should not need to re-do it.
- The big mirror has amazing light gathering powers, and it is this combined with the high quality mirror and lens surfaces that give the Meade 16” Dobsonian telescope its’ well deserved reputation as the ultimate telescope for the amateur astronomer. ‘’Meade Optics Inside’’ is a by-word for quality in the telescope industry, and this is certainly true here.
- Rocker Box. This is the base which supports the rest of the telescope. It is made from high quality materials and has friction control bearings that make moving the rest of the telescope smooth and controllable.
It all comes complete with Autostar Suite Astronomical software which will help you find anything from a database of over 10,000 objects, and a detailed users manual. There is also a quick set up guide, so you don’t have to spend hours working out how this telescope works before being able to try it out.
It has all been designed with ease of use in mind, so no specialized tools are needed to assemble or dismantle it, and all the parts are in themselves fairly easy to carry.