Sky-Watcher Flextube 200 Dobsonian 8-inch Collapsible Large Aperture Telescope – Portable, Easy to Use, Perfect for Beginners
|Objective Lens Diameter||203 Millimeters|
|Telescope Mount Description||Altazimuth Mount|
About this item
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- LARGE APERTURE: Get a bright, bold viewing experience at a fraction of the cost of other optical designs.
- INNOVATIVE COLLAPSIBLE DESIGN: Unique strut design allows for optical tube to collapse for ease of portability while keeping collimation.
- PROPRIETARY TENSION CONTROL HANDLES: These patented handles allow for accurate movement without the need for perfect balance.
- 94% REFLECTIVE MIRRORS: Fully multi-coated borosilicate primary and secondary mirrors deliver exceptional views.
- TEFLON BEARINGS: Proprietary Teflon bearings ensure smooth azimuth movement.
- COMES COMPLETE: All accessories such as, 2-inch Crayford-style focuser with 1 1/4-inch adapter, two super wide-angle eyepieces (25mm and 10mm), and 8x50 right-angle finder scope are included with purchase.
- STURDY AND LIGHTWEIGHT DESIGN: When fully assembled, the Dobsonian weighs only 40 pounds fully assembled (24 pound tube, 26 pound base)
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From the manufacturer
Sky-Watcher Flextube 200 Dobsonian 8-inch Collapsible Large Aperture Telescope
Corresponding to the escalating "aperture fever" that has gripped amateur astronomy for several decades, an 8" diameter is now generally regarded as the minimum entry-level aperture for serious observing. The low cost, large diameter, and fast focal ratio of the 8" Sky-Watcher Dobsonian make it an ideal dedicated telescope for wide-field, deep-space observation of faint galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters. The low-power dramatically captures wide swaths of sky in a single view. Galaxies and nebula appear to pop out of the heavens as bright, expansive masses of stars, gas, and dust.
Observing with the 8" Sky-Watcher Dobsonian:
If you have never before observed through a high-quality, wide-field Dobsonian, like the SW 8" DOB, you are in for one of the sweetest experiences in amateur astronomy. Imagine the exhilaration of opening a clam and discovering a pearl. The sky is full of pearls, astronomical pearls. While they won't make you rich in the financial sense, for amateur astronomers at least, observing the fabled pearls of deep-space is a rich and even exhilarating pastime. A catharsis for the soul that renders the mundane insignificant, and reconnects us with the inner child who revels in awe and wonderment. A night observing with the SW 8" Dob can leave you with a lingering sense of contentment long after the evening's viewing is over. Some of amateur astronomy's most revered and enthusiastically observed extra solar-system objects are now within your reach. This instrumentation provides entry into the brotherhood of serious amateur astronomers—you have arrived!
Sky-Watcher Uses Quality Components Throughout:
The Sky-Watcher 8" DOB utilizes quality components throughout. Pride of workmanship manifests itself in high quality standards of optical and mechanical fabrication. The polishing process for primary and diagonal mirror yields smooth mirror surfaces ensuring good contrast, and properly corrected optics show minimum alterations to the optical wave-front. On each primary mirror, and elliptical diagonal mirror aluminum is vacuum deposited to the front glass surface and then over coated with hard quartz (SiO4). Additional layers of Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) and (SiO4) are then applied. Dust covers help keep your DOB clean when not in use. The mechanical and structural components of the OTA exhibit rigid construction and outstanding stability. The mount construction is sturdy and rigid. Mount design, while simple, facilitates smooth motions about both axes. Quality accessories enhance the observer's viewing experience.
For years, Dobsonian telescopes have provided astronomers with the most bang for their buck using a large aperture and simple design. Viewing with a large aperture can provide a stellar experience, however the size of large reflector telescopes can pose problems for users looking to either store or transport their telescope from one location to another. The Sky-Watcher Collapsible Dobsonian solves this problem with a unique collapsible design using three retractable steel struts, allowing for easy storage and transit.
Transport Anywhere, Anytime
Dobsonians are known for giving users a large aperture reflecting telescope at a low price, however they often lack portability. Sky-Watcher has innovated this classic telescope design by integrating a collapsible tube system, addressing users’ portability concerns. Sky-Watcher Collapsible Dobsonians feature a strut system carefully designed to ease setup time in the field while delivering consistent optical performance. Each strut has preset indentations which place the optics in the same position time after time, maintaining collimation. Unlike Dobsonians using a truss-tube system, Sky-Watcher’s Collapsible Dobsonian does not need to be disassembled. The strut system is comprised of three 1” steel poles, joining the bottom and top portion of the optical tube. When extended, three chrome locking screws hold the instrument in place. Unlike truss tube Dobsonians, Sky-Watcher’s Collapsible Dobsonian holds collimation extremely well, forgoing the need to collimate each time it’s used. The retracting design can shorten the optical tube up to 36%, making storage and transit much easier.
At the heart of any Sky-Watcher telescope are observatory-grade optical components. The Collapsible Dobsonian is no exception, using components that yield exceptional contrast, 94% reflectivity and minimal vignetting. Mirrors are constructed with borosilicate glass, then coated with quartz, titanium and silicon dioxide to ensure an unparalleled viewing experience. Combining these superb optics with a large Dobsonian aperture helps ensure you’ll have bright, bold views of faint deep sky objects.
To ensure Sky-Watcher Dobsonians remain easy to use, all Collapsible Dobsonians include a mount base that is so smooth, it can be rotated with the push of a finger. 8” and 10” models come complete with Teflon™ bearings, while the larger 12”, 14” and 16” models use steel needle bearings to ensure smooth and easy movement.
Upgraded Pro Models
Sky-Watcher’s 14” and 16” Collapsible Dobsonian Pro models offer a few additional upgrades. Pro models also use a conical parabolic mirror to help reduce the weight of the primary and for faster cool-down time. Additionally, a 10:1 dual-speed Crayford-style focuser offers users a more precise method for focusing and needle bearings produce smoother, quieter movement. Pro models also include Sky-Watcher’s premiere collapsible mount which uses an easy-breakdown base for enhanced portability. Normally, these larger aperture scopes would be extremely difficult to transport but with Sky-Watcher’s innovative design these telescopes can be used anywhere.
Accessories and More
At Sky-Watcher, we want you to feel confident in your purchase, knowing that your telescope will come with all required accessories to start using your telescope. All Sky-Watcher Dobsonian telescopes include a 2” Crayford focuser and a 1.25” adapter, allowing you to utilize both 2” and 1.25” eyepieces. Also included, are two 1.25” eyepieces (25mm and 10mm), a 8x50 finderscope and eyepiece tray.
Top reviews from the United States
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The telescope arrived in two boxes like described and I had already watched YouTube videos on assembling. It really was easy and anyone who has assembled furniture can figure it out. The telescope was also updated based on some of the feedback from other customers. Mine came with a 90 degree finder scope. The main OTA can accept both 1.25” and 2” lenses. The altitude movement was very smooth, however the azimuth movement was sticky. There is a modification for the scope where you install a 12” lazy Susan bearing between the two circular base pieces and I highly recommend it. The lazy Susan will make the azimuth adjustments very smooth and easy.
I also removed the 3 feet that came with the telescope and replaced them with 4 x 2.5” locking casters making it much easier to move the scope to the backyard.
The scope is a star hopper so you need a basic understanding of the night sky. I took an Astronomy class almost three decades ago. That and a sky application for the phone helped me pick out Jupiter and Saturn. Even in the suburbs with a light pollution of 5 I am able to see the two gas giants easily. You don’t have to wait for astronomical twilight to fade before taking in Jupiter. Once I got my bearings I went for my first nebula and found the Lagoon. It was really a matter of practice with this scope and hopping.
If you are looking for a scope to find stuff for you then go for the go to version.
The lenses are ok for beginning with. They are both 1.25” but the kit lacks a Barlow. I borrowed the 2x Barlow from the cheap kit, but you can really tell the difference in lenses quality. A zoom lens would also be a good addition to someone buying this kit.
I got the laser collimator and moon filter offered by Amazon as a package. The collimator is necessary and I recommend watching a video on how to align your mirrors. I have not found use of the moon filter yet. Here I would recommend a good quality Barlow or Zoom lens.
I also wished Amazon carried a light shield for the open truss. You can find one from another reseller and for the backyard with lots of stray light, I’d recommend one.
The last thing I’d recommend is a good set of star charts and Left turn at Orion to help you search the night sky.
Pros: Easy to assemble, very good viewing once collimated, spotting scope is of decent quality, takes little space in the house, adapters for eyepieces are fairly universal.
Cons: None really. Could have been bigger. :P
Extra: Telrad won't mount easily, may need riser plate. Am going to custom build a mount for mine.
I ordered my device, and it arrived safe and sound the next day. It was extremely easy to assemble(i had already downloaded the manual), and it actually sat two weeks, before I could collimate it. I collimate using a laser collimator, and it took a while(as always for me), but went without too much issue. My screws into the primary mirror were easy, with the second being a little more stiff. But nothing too outrageous. I was sort of, but not too completely surprised to find the mirrors off(both), as that is a lot of shipping, and additionally, even my Orion required collumation out of the box.
Once the mirrors were done, I then at the finder scope, which was very straightforward. I then, gazed through the eyepiece, and all was clear. Nice quality view, and not too too bad eyepieces.
It is funny, because I also thought about purchasing the 10" traditional dob, as it actually is a bit cheaper than this one. However, the collapsible nature of this scope made the decision for me.. Either one is excellent, however, this seemed to for me better.
Overall, great scope at an excellent price!