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1. Einstein's Telescope: The Hunt
2. The Dobsonian Telescope: A Practical
3. Turn Left at Orion: A Hundred
4. Sky & Telescope's Pocket Sky
5. Choosing and Using a New CAT:
6. Build Your Own Telescope
7. How to Make a Telescope
8. Making Your Own Telescope
9. The Universe in a Mirror: The
10. How to Use a Computerized Telescope:
11. Star Ware: The Amateur Astronomer's
12. Star Testing Astronomical Telescopes:
13. So You Want a Meade LX Telescope!:
14. Astronomy with Small Telescopes:
15. Choosing and Using a Schmidt-Cassegrain
16. Stargazer: The Life and Times
17. Looking Through a Telescope (Rookie
18. Amateur Telescope Making (Patrick
19. Space: Views from the Hubble Telescope
20. A Simple Guide to Telescopes,

1. Einstein's Telescope: The Hunt for Dark Matter and Dark Energy in the Universe
by Evalyn Gates
Paperback: 305 Pages (2010-02-22)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$10.01
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0393338010
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
“Splendidly satisfying reading, designed for a nonspecialist audience.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred reviewEvalyn Gates, a talented astrophysicist, transports readers to the edge of contemporary science to explore the revolutionary tool—”Einstein’s telescope”—that is unlocking the secrets of the Universe. Einstein’s telescope, or gravitational lensing, is so-called for the way gravity causes space to distort and allow massive objects to act like “lenses,” amplifying and distorting the images of objects behind them. By allowing for the detection of mass where no light is found, scientists can map out the distribution of dark matter and come a step closer to teasing out the effects of dark energy on the Universe—which may forever upend long-held notions about where the Universe came from and where it is going. 8 pages of color; 40 b/w illustrations ... Read more

Customer Reviews (19)

4-0 out of 5 stars Not a good fit for the Kindle
Love this book, love my Kindle, but the illustrations don't translate well in electronic ink.

5-0 out of 5 stars A thorough, lively account
EINSTEIN'S TELESCOPE: THE HUNT FOR DARK MATTER AND DARK ENERGY IN THE UNIVERSE provides a powerful scientific examination of one of Einstein's most intriguing theori4es: that gravitational distortions would allow space to act as a telescope more powerful than humans could build. Cosmologists are using his technique to detect revolutionary realms - and EINSTEIN'S TELESCOPE provides a fine blend of astronomy theory and practice as it tells of the concept and how it's being applied. Both science holdings and general-interest libraries will find this a thorough, lively account.

5-0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly Enjoyable!
This is a book about humanity's recent efforts in unravelling the composition of the universe. In very clear and eloquent prose, the author gently and painlessly guides the reader through problems in cosmology - focussing primarily on dark matter and dark energy. The main tool that is prominent throughout the book is gravitational lensing - hence the book's title. The author has taken the time to carefully explain the various theories and mechanisms involved; for illustration purposes, she has made extensive use of very helpful analogies from everyday experience. In my opinion, the author has succeeded admirably in writing a book that can be fully enjoyed by a general readership. She has remained well-grounded throughout, illustrating the practical aspects of scientific problems in light of well-established (and well-explained) theories. The writing style is friendly, clear, authoritative, widely accessible, lively and quite captivating. Complete with several useful figures and colour plates, this book can be enjoyed by anyone interested in humanity's quest to understand the composition and machinery of our universe.

5-0 out of 5 stars I'm almost convinced
I started reading Einstein's Telescope with the idea of refuting many of its conclusions.After all, Dark Matter and Dark Enegy were invented to explain why the universe is the way it is - are they real, or just convenient patches on a flawed model?

After reading the book, I find it hard to deny the existence of the Dark Universe.(It isn't actually Dark.In fact, if real, Dark Matter is completely transparent.)The case for Dark Matter in Evalyn Gate's book is pretty conclusive.[Now, I can bring in MOG (or MOND) and explain things another way, but MOG stands on "unusual" ground.]Einstein's Telescope is using the observable universe for its proof, and I am fairly convinced that Dark Matter is real.She, Evalyn, can be very persuasive.Dark Energy is a greater mystery not yet explained or explainable by current science(or Evalyn).I can still hang on to one of my prejudices.

Einstein's Telescope is a good read, but I found myself annoyed by ocassional statements like, "Dark Matter is undetectable by even our most powerful telescopes".If Dark Matter is real, there should be some just about anywhere/everywhere.Why not look locally, instead of billions of lightyears away?It may be concentrated in certain places, but should be detectable (somehow)in almost any portion of the Universe - like in a particle accelerator on Earth, maybe.I guess it would help to know what to look for, but is that going to come from a telescope?

Don't mind my criticisms.I would recommend Einstein's Telescope to anyone as the best available description of the current understanding of the universe we live in.We live in a time when more and more questions are being asked in cosmology and quantum mechanics whose possible answers are so varied that they can't all be right.We can't be sure of the accuracy of our knowledge without more information.The one area which seems to be producing new and verifiable knowledge is cosmology based on the gravitational lensing techniques described in Einstein's Telescope:The Hunt for Dark Matter and Dark Energy in the Universe by Evalyn Gates.

Get it, and read it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Savy and Scientific
I read this book alongside Dan Hooper's new book on Supersymmetry (see related review of this book). While Mr. Hooper comes at dark matter from the perspective of a particle physicist and supersymmetry, Ms. Gates provided a very nice juxtaposition (for me at least) by coming at dark matter from the cosmic perspective as an astrophysicist, and from the distinct perspective of gravitational lensing - the essence of the title of the book. As a current graduate student in Astronomy, I really enjoyed the obvious knowledge and background that Ms. Gates brought to this subject. I also enjoyed Ms. Gates' humorous presentation. Handled wrongly, sometimes humour can detract from the flow and presentation, but Ms. Gates (in my opinion) nicely used her dry wit to add to the presentation and to provide moments of levity throughout the text. The book will be very enjoyable to any reader interested in science and provides a very nice summary of dark matter and the techniques employed to quantify it. It doesn't deal too much with dark energy, other than to confirm that observations show that the Universe's expansion is accelerating and giving possible explanations for it in a summary way. But I don't fault the author for this; dark energy is very much more mysterious than dark matter at this point, and it seemed the author's intent here was to concentrate on dark matter. I very much recommend this book. ... Read more

2. The Dobsonian Telescope: A Practical Manual for Building Large Aperture Telescopes
by David Kriege, Richard Berry
Hardcover: 475 Pages (1997-06)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$29.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0943396557
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This book tells how you can build a state-of-the-art Dobsonian telescope using readily available materials and supplies. Every step of construction is detailedin photographs and diagrams, and the underlying ideas are carefully explained.As a result of this three-year collaboration between authors David Kriege and Richard Berry, experienced and well-known telescope makers, you now have the opportunity to build a high-performance telescope from 14 inches to 40 inches aperture based on the thoroughly tested designs described in this book.The Dobsonian telescope takes its name from the astronomer/philosopher John Dobson, who introduced the concept of inexpensive, large-aperture telescopes to astronomy.Amateur astronomers at the time were so amazed that a telescope builtfrom simple, inexpensive materials performed so well that they could hardly believe their eyes.As home-built Dobsonians started showing up at star parties across the nation and people saw what Dobsonians could do, the word spread. In just a few years, the Dobsonian revolution swept the world.Since those early telescopes, Dobsonians have improved dramatically. An entire generation of amateur telescope makers contributed their best insights and refinements to Dobson's original design.Today's Dobsonians are larger, lighter,and more precise than ever before. For example, it is possible to build a telescope of 20 inches aperture that is compact enough to transp ... Read more

Customer Reviews (23)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Title Says it All
A very easily understood, "nuts and bolts" book for someone with a hankering to go BIG with their star gazing equipment, and want the satisfaction of DIY.

I really enjoyed the book, the writing style is very easy to follow and understan without a lot of technical mumbo jumbo usally found in amature telescope making guides. I also liked the fact that the authors discuss the latest trend in light weight construction, open truss structures.

It starts off with guiding one thru building a small scope and then utilizing that learning process to enable one to have the confidence to go to the BIG light buckets for deep space viewing.

My kind of book, direct and to the point, without a lot of personal anectodal accounts, yet not dry and technical.

If you're looking to build your own large size Dobsonian, then this is the ONE book to have.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Dobsonian Telescope - A Practical Manual for building
Book received in excelent condition.
Have read most of it once and now going throught the nuts & bolts of it

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book, you won't be able to put it down!
No joke, this book is great. You'd think 475 pages of instructions on building something would be a bore, but this book is different. Not only does he tell you how to do it, but *why*. The "why" is either a clear explanation of physics and telescope theory, or some practical tidbit the authors have learned from their own experience. Despite being one of the most detailed "how to" books I've ever read it's hard to put down.

Even if you're only mildly interested in building a Dobsonian, if you enjoy building things this book will intrigue you.

Order direct from the publisher, Willman-Bell, for free shipping.

5-0 out of 5 stars Must have book if you like Dobs
Great book if you plan on build your own or just thinking about it.It covers all the materials in great detail and makes it easy to understand.

5-0 out of 5 stars Essential For Making A Truss Tube Dobsonian
Even though I ended up making a solid tube, I bought this from Mr. Kreige with the expectation that I would end up with a truss setup for my 16". The book is well laid out and the instructions are clear. However, they are also not very simple and it's not just a matter of throwing a bunch of stuff together to get a truss setup.

In my case, I had the deck stacked against me for several reasons. My 16" mirror is f6.4 which would require a little more than a 9' tube. This presents several balancing and wobble challenges. Then there are the complex angles that must be cut for the trusses to line up properly and consistently. However, the real clincher for me was the cost of the materials. To make a really on-spec Dobsonian as described in the book would take a lot more money than I had available. So I ended up using plywood and Sonotube. Thing was built like a Russian tank, but wasn't exactly light and as portable as a truss design.

All in all, this is an outstanding book and should be a mandatory addition to any telescope makers library. Highly recommended.
... Read more

3. Turn Left at Orion: A Hundred Night Sky Objects to See in a Small Telescope--and How to Find Them
by Guy Consolmagno, Dan M. Davis
Hardcover: 224 Pages (2000-10-23)
list price: US$27.99 -- used & new: US$16.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0521781906
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description
A superb guidebook described in Bookwatch as 'the home astronomer's "bible"', Turn Left at Orion provides all the information beginning amateur astronomers need to observe the Moon, the planets and a whole host of celestial objects. Large format diagrams show these objects exactly as they appear in a small telescope and for each object there is information on the current state of our astronomical knowledge. Revised and updated, this new edition contains a chapter with ten new spreads describing spectacular deep sky objects visible from the southern hemisphere, and tips on observing the upcoming transits of Venus. It also discusses Dobsonian telescopes, with hints on using personal computers and the Internet as aids for planning an observing session. Also new to this edition are redrawn "Guidepost" figures at the beginning of each season chapter that allow readers to visualize a three-dimensional view of the sky's dome; redesigned seasonal object layouts that provide more space for the naked-eye charts; a new spread on double stars near Boötes has been added to Spring, replacing the "Shrinking Double" spread; and a unique "When and Where to Look" table has been added to the last page, among other new features. Unlike many guides to the night sky, this book is specifically written for observers using small telescopes. Clear and easy to use, this fascinating book will appeal to skywatchers of all ages and backgrounds. No previous knowledge of astronomy is needed. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (67)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great beginner book
Turn Left at Orion is the perfect book for an astronomy newbie like myself. Starting with generalized information about astronomy and small telescopes it then goes onto detailed instructions about viewing with a small telescope. As a new owner of a 3 1/2" refractor, and not knowing what I should be looking at or for, it is the best help I could want. I would definitely recommend this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book.
Great book for anyone with a scope, small and large alike.I have an 8" Orion dobsonian, this book is a perfect starter.Labels objects by season, and gives details as to the darkness of skies required for each object.Explains how to find very well and has finderscope and eyepiece views (assumes a star diagonal for the eyepiece view...so for a Newtonian, realize it's mirrored up/down, but easy to get used to) to aid in finding the object.Great book for anyone who owns a scope.

5-0 out of 5 stars Buy this book
This is the fourth copy of TURN LEFT AT ORION that I have purchased since it was originally purchased.With my over 40years of observing it is the book that I recommend or give to a budding astronomer.I particularly like the authors approach in presenting the material with the authors rating from 1 to 4 stars for each of the objects he presents along with a description and graphics of what you should see in both the viewfinder and small telescope.If you are interested in finding your way around the night sky this is an excellent way to start your journey.It will introduce the reader and understanding of stars, star clusters, nebulas, and other galaxies.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Guide for People New To Astronomy
This is an excellent guide for people new to astornomy.It contains very useful information and if you are new to this field of study you will find the information to be very informative.Not only does it provide information on how to locate objects, it also provides some information on telescopes and what to look for when purchasing your first telescope.I highly recommend this book to people who are interested in astronomy.

4-0 out of 5 stars Nice book
This book got so many great reviews I had to buy it. It is a good book for a beginner for finding many targets to view with a small telescope, but I much prefer Night Watch. This is mostly a book to find the very easy targets, not much more. The star charts are very simple and the directions for finding targets will be a great help to a beginner. I just find all the other information and the star charts in Night Watch to be better. However the two books go togeather well. ... Read more

4. Sky & Telescope's Pocket Sky Atlas
by Roger W. Sinnott
Spiral-bound: 110 Pages (2006-03-30)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$11.52
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1931559317
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (60)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great, but in-between size
Jon Bosley has it exactly right.This is a great atlas, but I wish they'd used the same scale, symbols, and etc but divided the sky into fewer, larger charts and made the atlas full book-sized, like the Norton's and Cambridge atlases.The Pocket Atlas is far superior to those old standards in many ways, but the charts are a little too small to get a sense of many constellations.Yet, it's still too large to be truly "pocket sized."

As it is, probably still the best choice available if you don't want to carry around Sky Atlas 2000.0.If you're not very familiar with the constellations get yourself a planisphere also, to show the whole sky and make constellation patterns recognizable.

Sky Publishing, if you read these reviews - please give us a 9x12" atlas at this scale!

4-0 out of 5 stars Great atlas, with one unfortunate drawback
Many reviews have already extolled the virtues of this atlas: the wonderful look and feel (in the tradition of Becvar and Tirion's Cambridge atlas), the convenient size (take it on field trips or read it in bed), the spiral binding that allows it to lie flat, the hard thinking that has obviously gone into the layout. Constellation figures, tick. Clear constellation names, tick. Extensive inclusion of star names, plus locations of some nearby stars that didn't make the magnitude cutoff, tick.

Some reviews have called it your ultimate reference, but because of its one downside, this it cannot be. I purchased it to be something midway between Tirion's Star Atlas 2000.0 (1st ed. to mag 6.5, yes I know it's old now...) and the 3 volume Millenium Star Atlas (too heavy for anywhere but the desk). But despite covering more stars with a higher zoom than Tirion's atlas, it uses less star labels.

Take Leo Minor for example, hardly a constellation where congestion would be a problem. Tirion's map is about 50% smaller, yet I had to copy the following Flamsteed numbers from Tirion into Sinnott's: 7, 9, 13, 22-24, 27, 32-35, 38, 40, 43-44, 48, 50. It seems like more are omitted than included, and the fact that I was able to pencil them in means that there was plenty of space for the publishers to be a bit more generous. In the southern hemisphere, e Eri/82 G. Eri is a large, nameless dot (an important star, one of the closest to the Sun). This was extremely disappointing, and I considered rating it only 3 stars (after all, these labels are one of the primary reasons to buy an atlas), but the other positives pursuaded me, at length, to award it 4 . . . just.

To finish on a positive note, they did print Rho Aql correctly: it recently slipped into Delphinus, and now has to be printed with its constellation name as well as its Greek designation. Good one.

Richard @ [...]

5-0 out of 5 stars BEST Star Map Chart!
Have had for two years and it is indeed very helpful. Shows and explains the distant objects and how far they are. It even has tips to help find constellations and have a better view!

5-0 out of 5 stars the best pocket sky atlas
in the introduction to this "pocket sky atlas", roger sinnott asks the reader to "think of this as your *working* sky atlas". it is extremely well designed: pocket sized (6" x 9"), spiral bound (you can fold it in half, subway style), relatively large scale charts (5 degrees to the inch), containing all "finder scope" stars down to magnitude 7.6, and very legible under red light.

there are four detail charts (pleiades, orion nebula, virgo/leo galaxy clusters, and large magellanic cloud), and an index that separately lists all named stars, messier objects, caldwell objects, and deep sky objects (galaxies, open clusters, globular clusters, bright nebulae, dark nebulae and planetary nebulae by NGC, IC or other catalog number, indicated the chart(s) where each object can be found.

charts are arranged as details within a pole to pole slice or "gore" of the sky, which makes it convenient to browse and hunt objects that are near the meridian at different times of the year. perhaps all that is missing are some tables listing sunrise and sunset, UT/local time conversions, and a magnitude labeled polar star chart to use in visual tests of transparency and light pollution.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Little Night Sky Guide
Although very new to astronomy, I am somewhat familiar with how technically daunting some guides can be. I was pleasantly surprised with this book.

Now to be certain it takes a little looking through it to get aquainted with it, but once one understands the format and how it's arranged it's really a nice guide for exploring the night sky.

What I like about it is that rather than the whole sky, as usually shown in guides like these, it is broken down first by time of the year, time of the night and then it's charts are sectionalized in a very easy to follow format that allows you to focus on the area of the sky you're exploring with detailed indications of stars, double stars, clusters, nebulae, Messier objects, etc.as well as what adjacent maps to go to for further expanded views.

I am very pleased with this guide and would highly recommend it to anyone starting out in astronomy. ... Read more

5. Choosing and Using a New CAT: Getting the Most from Your Schmidt Cassegrain or Any Catadioptric Telescope (Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series)
by Rod Mollise
Paperback: 335 Pages (2008-12-12)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$17.38
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0387097716
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Choosing and Using the New CAT will supercede the author’s successful Choosing and Using a Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope, which has enjoyed enthusiastic support from the amateur astronomy community for the past seven years.

Since the first book was published, a lot has changed in the technology of amateur astronomy. The sophistication and variety of the telescopes available to amateurs has increased dramatically. Computerized SCTs, Maksutov-Cassegrains, and most recently Meade’s new and acclaimed Ritchey-Chrétiens have come to dominate the market. That means that all amateurs considering the purchase of a new telescope (not only a SCT, and not just beginners) will benefit from this detailed guide. Choosing the right telescope for particular kinds of observation (or even for general work) is far from easy – but Rod Mollise gives invaluable advice and guidance.

Today’s commercially-made astronomical telescopes are more complex than ever, and a new owner will swiftly discover that the manuals shipped with these telescopes leave much to be desired. Further guidance is a must. Choosing and Using the New CAT provides the missing information in a friendly but authoritative fashion, including imaging the solar system and deep space with the CCD cameras, video, and webcams that have almost completely supplanted ‘film’ cameras.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars the comprehensive CAT guide
this is one of those books that no only expresses but achieves the aspiration to be a classic. for the reader who is relatively new to amateur astronomy generally, or new to the catadioptric (CAT) telescopes specifically, this book is as essential and useful as "norton's star atlas", "sky atlas 2000" and several deep sky observing guides besides.

although every chapter title is a play on the acronym cat ("Care and feeding of a CAT", "Inside a CAT," "Hacking a CAT", etc.) in a way that suggests a limited topic coverage, i found some amusement in trying to find a topic that *is not* discussed in this 335 page guide. collimation? a 5 page discussion. mandatory items, like flashlights or dew heaters? check. the use of a hartman mask for precise focusing? pages 294-95. how to deal with telescope dealers? yep. how to use a dark hood, and the importance of warm feet? it's in there. a review of telescope brands and models, astronomy software and a long list of astronomical dealer and web sites? oh yeah. i did finally stump him: there's no formula to compute an eyepiece true field of view using the star drift method (mollise gives the optical formula instead).

elsewhere i gave a negative review of another CAT volume in the patrick moore series because it nohow lived up to its title. with mollise the circumstances are just the reverse: until you pick up this apparently humble book, you'll have no idea how much useful stuff is in here.

essential reading before you buy a CAT telescope, and very helpful reading for every night that you use a telescope, no matter what kind it is.

4-0 out of 5 stars Useful guidance on telescope buuying.
If you are new to astronmy, this book makes a good introduction to the interesting problem of telescope selection.The author's strong opinion in favor of catadioptric telescopes in obvious, but if you want one, this book will give you a lot to think about.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Source of Information for the amateur astronomer
If you are in the market for, or already own a catadioptric telescope, this is a must have. The author clearly explains the designs and ins and outs of a multitude of types of CATs (telescopes...not the cute fury ones). The book is written in clear and concise terms with a twist of down home southern wisdom and humor that would appeal to stargazers at any level of the hobby. "Uncle Rod", as Mr. Mollise is known to the online astronomy community is a wealth of knowledge on the subject of CATs and astronomy in general.He is respected and revered for his opinions.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Must Read!
I had become familiar with "Uncle Rod's" wealth of experience from his entries on Cloudy Nights forums. Then I discovered his online "Used CAT" guide. Wow, what a lot of information for an equipment junkie or anyone interested in astronomy. Then the coup-de-gras, this updated guide on Cat scopes and almost every other topic of interest to an amateur astronomer! I have read every word several times over. If I had only read it BEFORE I whipped out the old credit card and bought that last scope trying to reach observing nirvana I would have saved a lot of money and frustration. I am a CEO of a popular educational publishing company and I know how much work and love goes into such a tome. It is extremely up to date and that is not easy in such a fast moving hobby.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Good guide
This is a very good guide for the persons that are thinking about buying a cat telescope since it covers most of the cats on the market todey.
It is also interesting for those that already owns a cat but wants to know more about cats in general, it also gives you lot of tips you can use to fully utilize the time when you are "out in the dark"
That the writer is higly knowlegebly about Cats and has lots of experience whit this telescope type shines throu and he writes in a way that everyone understands what he is talking about.
A must on every bookshelf ... Read more

6. Build Your Own Telescope
by Richard Berry
 Hardcover: 287 Pages (2001-04)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$24.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0943396697
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Customer Reviews (7)

2-0 out of 5 stars Plans Suck.
Although the book's helpful for learning how telescopes work and how they're made, the real purpose of the book is to show how to make five telescopes.That's why people supposedly buy it, given its title.But the truth is that the plans suck.He doesn't label parts in his diagrams.The dimensions in the text don't match the dimensions in the diagrams.After reading many of his paragraphs on putting the telescopes together, you'll think "What?What the )(&(^^% are you talking about?"You'll realize a lot of its going to be guesswork, on your part! This is because the plans do a piss poor job of even minimally explaining how to build the thing.A 12th grader could have written better plans.The book needs to be rewritten by someone NOT the author, who knows how to write plans in an accurate easy to read step-by-step manner.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great book for budding ATMs
I first bought this book in 1989, and built the 10" Dobsonian described therein.Berry's talent lies is paring down a lot of the information available in other books, and telling you in clear, simple terms what you need to know.His directions for grinding a telescope mirror (I did this with a 6" mirror) are the clearest I've read.His technique for mirror grinding is clearly explained and easier to follow than many other books.There are also sections on testing mirrors, collimation, and other subjects helpful to amateur telescope makers.If you intend to build your own telescope, this book is a must.Even if you are a do-it-your-selfer who doesn't desire to build a telescope, or you have a general interest in astronomy, you'll find this book interesting.Fourteen years after I built the 10" Dobsonian described in this book, I would not change one single aspect of its design--thank you Richard Berry.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Plans - Great Results!
Great book on telescope building. I built his 6" equitorial mount reflector in 1987 and its still going strong. A wonderful place to start!

5-0 out of 5 stars a good book to explore ATM
A very good book for someone that has more curiosity than ready cash.Very informative. Nice job!

5-0 out of 5 stars the best single book today for making your first scope!
If you can only have one first book on making your own telescope this is it! I have been an active amateur astronomer for almost 35 years and I wish this book had been out in 1965 at the time I first got interested in astronomy. Richard Berry when he was editor of "Astronomy", and "Telescope Making" (now sadly defunct),was the first to popularize John Dobson's Sidewalk Telescope design now simply known to amateur astronomers everywhere as the "Dobsonian".In this book he leads you in how to build several excellent telescopes from parts that are easily available from hardware/lumberyard sources everywhere. He shows and explains 5 different example projects, 4",6",10" Newtonians on Dobson mounts, how to mount a refractor on a Dobson type mount, and even one equatorial mount made of plywood and hardware parts. The projects are well illustrated and explained. He gives you a good overview of commercially available parts and commonly used eyepieces. But beyond being just a simple how-to project book he gives an explanation of telescope history and and basic optical theory. I wish I had his well illustrated chapter on "Home Brewed Optics" when I made my first telescope mirror. While not a substitute for having a copy of Allyn Thompson's "Making Your Own Telescope", or Jean Texereau's "How to Make a Telescope" which deal mainly with the making of the primary mirror, it would have tied together concepts I did not understand well at the time. When I'm asked while doing public star parties (and you always will be while doing that kind of thing)"what kind of telescope should I get" or "where can I find out how to build one these things (the telescope)", I always recommend this book. In fact I now always bring a copy to these occasions so they can get the title and author correct as well as browse thru it. You can light a number of fires that way. ... Read more

7. How to Make a Telescope
by J. Texereau
 Paperback: Pages (2000-01)
list price: US$1.95
Isbn: 0385030398
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best telescope book to have
I have read many books on how to build telescopes and this is by far the best book to own! I thought that the "the dobsonian telescope by David Kriege" was an excellent book until I read this book by jean texereau. The two don't even compare. This book is the bible of telescope building! It is very informative with lots of good pictures. With this book you can build almost any type of reflector telescope you like. The average person may get scared off by some of the formulas within the text. But most of the formulas are there just to double check your work. Great book!

5-0 out of 5 stars Most In-Depth Mirror Making Tome
This is the book that scared me away from buying it for years because of the heavy math. The first version I saw was in 1966 and it was a lot thinner than what is available now. I finally picked it up at a used bookstore in 2002. By that time I was not longer making mirrors. I just wanted it for my library.

This book goes into excruciating detail on mirror testing and despite the complexity, I gleaned a few things from it that I wish I'd known twenty years ago when I made my last mirror!

It has a lot of extra material that I'm sure wasn't in the much thinner original version I saw in the 60's. Whoever updated it did an excellent job though even now, as another reviewer noted, much of the info is outdated.

This is another essential book that every mirror maker should have in his or her library. If you are just starting out, get it, but I'd recommend the books by Howard and Thompson over this one unless you are a math wiz. Still, highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars A superb book!!
This is, without doubt, the best book that I have read about telescope making. It is clearly written, full of detail, with good instructions on all points of mirror making and also describes how to make a simple mounting for an 8" reflector. If you have this book, together with Howard's "Handbook for telescope making" and the chapter on mirror making in "Amateur telescope making Vol 2", you will have all the information that you need to make an excellent telescope. I cannot recommend this book highly enough!

4-0 out of 5 stars how to make a telescope
I'm sorry, this is my first review.How could amazon fail to give a good synopsys of this book?Anything by texereau is pretty much a definitive work on telescope making and mirror making.He gives good explanations, gives the math behind stuff.He also gives the best explanations of how to polish and parabolize a mirror that i have seen.Before you buy Ingalls book buy this one.

4-0 out of 5 stars Some topics dated but still irreplaceable.
Originally published in French in 1951, translated and published in English in 1957, it was re-published by Willmann-Bell in 1984, with extensive appendices giving sources of even more information. This bookcertainly shows its age in its inclusion of topics such as silvering amirror at home (don't do it - lots of nasty chemicals), and its omission ofDobsonian ideas in its section on alt-az mounts - it pre-dates thatinnovation. However, for a discussion of designing an optical system, togrinding and polishing a mirror, and especially for details of how torigorously test its figure, Texereau is unparalleled.

Several other booksinclude six or a dozen telescopes you can build, with some pictures of thefinal product, and the builder's musings on what problems he faced inbuilding it; Texereau takes you through all the messy details you need toknow before making a lot of time-consuming mistakes. Again, much of it canbe skipped; he spends four chapters on classical Cassegrains, which Igather is his favorite telescope design. But this book is highlyrecommended for anyone considering pushing glass. ... Read more

8. Making Your Own Telescope
by Allyn J. Thompson
Paperback: 223 Pages (2003-06-20)
list price: US$14.95
Isbn: 0486428834
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Complete, detailed instructions and numerous diagrams for constructing a do-it-yourself telescope. No complicated mathematics are involved, and no prior knowledge of optics or astronomy is needed to follow the text's step-by-step directions. Contents cover, among other topics, materials and equipment; tube parts and alignment; eyepieces, and related problems; setting circles; and optical principles. 1973 ed. Appendixes. Index. 6 plates. 100 figures.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Sentimental Favorite
This was my bible back in 1966 when I made my first mirror, an 8". At that time, there were a lot of things I just couldn't grasp as a sophomore in high school. However, with the help of a friend with lots of experience, I got over the rough parts and made a pretty decent mirror. I can't comment on the latest edition as I don't know how much was updated from that tried and true technology from so long ago. All I know is that the version published in the 60's was relevant and accurate.

This is the book from which I learned at least one new vocabulary word, "tyro." I had to look it up. The rest of the language was well explained including all the optical terms that are a regular part of my language today.

If nothing else, this is a solid book to start out telescope making. It should be used in conjunction with other books on the subject to give you a more rounded view on making your first mirror. However, it stands on its own as a mirror-makers bible. It may not have the depth of math the Texereau book or a few of the others does, but it gets the job done. Worked for me. Highly recommended.

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting read
This book was interesting, and helped my 80 year-old father to take up a hobby that has always interested him. However, the information in the book is somewhat out of date.

5-0 out of 5 stars Still possiblythe best book for the novice mirror maker
In making this review, I'm amazed on thedateI'm writing it to be the first one, this book has been in print for over half a century and I can't believe I'm the only one who ever found it useful.The author AllynThompson, was a postmaster by profession, who led a group of a group ofamateur telescope makers at the old Hayden planetarium in the 1940's to thetime of his death in the mid 1950's.The book itself is an outgrowth of aseries of articles he wrote immediately after the second world war whichappeared in Sky and Telescope magazine.Though the size and focal lengthof the telescope he describes building (a 6-inch f8 reflector) is small bythe amateur standards of the last 20 years, it is still probably the bestsize for a novice wishing to grind and polish the primary mirror themselvesto start with.And it is in his step by step discriptions for making theprimary mirror of a Newtonian reflector that this book excels.He tellsyou in a simple straight forward way the theory and history of thetelescope, materials needed to grind and polish your own primary mirror,how to do it, how to test it (his discription of the Focault tester andusing masks with it are in my opinion the still the clearest written forthe beginner). He does not attempt to scare you away with horror stories ofall the terrible things that can happen to you, turned down edge, dogbiscuit ect, a flaw you find in the old "ATM" books I and IIedited by Albert Ingalls.Thompson identifies possible problems, but thenguides you through them with straight forward techniques.His "buttonlaps" were a wonderful inovation for small mirror making and moldswere widely available when this writer polished his first mirrors 30 yearsago. Unfortunately nobody I know of today sells the molds commercially, butThompson shows you how to make them yourself if you want to try it. Asfar as the mechanical construction of the telescope, the book is dated. Not many people today would use babbitt filled pipe fittings to make amount, not since the easily built and more stable Dobson mount became thestandard about 20 years ago for home builts (for a good book on that seeRichard Berry's "Build Your Own Telescope").But John Dobson wasjust starting to build scopes about the time Thompson died so he can't beblamed for never having seen one, he was on the other side of the country.All in all this book has held up well for something written 50 years ago. I wish I'd had a copy of it when I built my first scope. I didn't discoverit till after I'd made my second mirror and I believe things would havegone a lot smoother had I read this first instead of using the old ATMbooks.It's too bad Allen Thompson isn't with us today to have updated themechanical stuff, but as a mentor for your first mirror, you can't beatthis book! ... Read more

9. The Universe in a Mirror: The Saga of the Hubble Space Telescope and the Visionaries Who Built It
by Robert Zimmerman
Paperback: 312 Pages (2010-03-14)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$10.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0691146357
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The Hubble Space Telescope has produced the most stunning images of the cosmos humanity has ever seen. It has transformed our understanding of the universe around us, revealing new information about its age and evolution, the life cycle of stars, and the very existence of black holes, among other startling discoveries. But it took an amazing amount of work and perseverance to get the first space telescope up and running. The Universe in a Mirror tells the story of this telescope and the visionaries responsible for its extraordinary accomplishments.

Robert Zimmerman takes readers behind the scenes of one of the most ambitious scientific instruments ever sent into space. After World War II, astronomer Lyman Spitzer and a handful of scientists waged a fifty-year struggle to build the first space telescope capable of seeing beyond Earth's atmospheric veil. Zimmerman shows how many of the telescope's advocates sacrificed careers and family to get it launched, and how others devoted their lives to Hubble only to have their hopes and reputations shattered when its mirror was found to be flawed. This is the story of an idea that would not die--and of the dauntless human spirit. Illustrated with striking color images, The Universe in a Mirror describes the heated battles between scientists and bureaucrats, the perseverance of astronauts to repair and maintain the telescope, and much more. Hubble, and the men and women behind it, opened a rare window onto the universe, dazzling humanity with sights never before seen.

This book tells their remarkable story. A new afterword updates the reader on the May 2009 Hubble service mission and looks to the future of astronomy, including the prospect of a new space telescope to replace Hubble.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars A suprisingly GREAT read!
I figured this would an interesting but "dry" story on the Hubble.WOW was I (pleasantly) wrong!The entire saga of the fitful birth of that great instrument really comes to life here. I won't quite call it a page turner you can't put down but you WILL be compelled to return to it till the end. This is also a real eye opener on just how dysfunctional our political decisions about science are.

Very well written, this definitely makes me want to check out his other work!

3-0 out of 5 stars Missing Hubble itself
The subtitle is unfortunately too accurate: "The Saga of the Hubble Space Telescope and the Visionaries Who Built It."Too much saga, not enough Hubble.The book never seems to find its balance between telling Hubble's overall story and imparting new detail.

The saga, personalities and politics are thoroughly covered. Sometimes too thoroughly -- mountain climbing occupies 5-6 pages of the book's main narrative of 235 pages, yet the first mention of the chief engineer is at the mid-point.The first 75 pages can be tough slogging.The most enjoyable parts of the book cover Hubble's launch, embarrassment, recovery, success and public appreciation.An editor should have trimmed the first part of the book to allow more here.

I also kept wanting more info on Hubble itself.The engineering treatment is limited to the mirror diameter, opting for in-orbit repairs and the sensor choice.There's nothing on Hubble's other basic dimensions, structure, power use, etc.How did the designers implement their decision on orbital repairs?There's a quick mention of Hubble leaders knowing of contemporary spy satellites with 2.4 meter mirrors and Perkin-Elmer's work on them.No follow-up comes after that.What other design elements may or may not have been adopted from then secret satellites?Surely much of this can be told 30 years after the fact.The author makes no effort to open this up.Construction is also given little treatment, save for the main mirror flaw.Little Teacher's review cites some basic text errors, such as with the CCD dimensions.More are easy to spot, showing the need for better editing.

4-0 out of 5 stars the biography of the Hubble telescope
This is a story of a normal thing, something we don't look at with wonder but simply accept as something that "is."In that way, the book reminds me of "The Box" by Marc Levinson.

The story has an undeniable appeal.The Hubble photographs themselves have universal interest - they are how we show what we know about the universe.More than photographs, Hubble has given us "galactic pin-ups" -- super-beautiful photos that are eye-catching and exciting.Our knowledge of and interest in space has expanded enormously because of the Hubble telescope.

Hubble has shaped our knowledge and our expectations for science.This book has plenty of photos to augment the story, along with very nice charts and diagrams.The center section is full-color reproductions of Hubble portraits of our solar system, other galaxies, and deep space.

The main story line -- how Hubble was mis-designed, and how human genius repaired it, is marvelous.

And it's depressing: Most chapters of this book tell the story of a telescope that almost wasn't.The book is a showcase of getting things done (poorly) through the government: the byzantine decision making, the labyrinths of committee meetings and agendas, the conflicting priorities, the zero-sum nature of bureaucratic planning, the paralysis attendant upon failures.It is utterly dismal how much "science" depends on massaging the government budget process.In America!What a shame.

3-0 out of 5 stars People and Politics
This book goes into great detail about the decades-long effort to build and fly the Hubble, and then the problem with the mirror.If you're looking for technical details, though, there isn't much here.

4-0 out of 5 stars Hubble comes to light!
This book is definitely a must for anyone interested in space science. Mr. Zimmerman tackles a very difficult obstacle -- How do you write about science and make it interesting? -- and he comes out with a winner.

Although there are other books out there about the Hubble, none of them come close to describing the behind the scenes SAGA of this amazing instrument as this book does. This is where Zimmerman, along with the great Hubble, shines! ... Read more

10. How to Use a Computerized Telescope: Practical Amateur Astronomy Volume 1
by Michael A. Covington
Paperback: 240 Pages (2002-11-04)
list price: US$48.99 -- used & new: US$29.74
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0521007909
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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How to Use a Computerized Telescope describes how to get a computerized telescope up-and-running, and how to embark on a program of observation. Michael Covington explains in detail how the sky moves, how a telescope tracks it, and how to get the most out of any computerized telescope. Packed full of practical advice and tips for troubleshooting, his book gives detailed instructions for three popular telescopes: the Meade® LX200, Celestron^DCC NexStar 5 and 8, and Meade® Autostar^DTM (ETX and LX90). Michael A. Covington is an associate research scientist at the University of Georgia.He is a computational linguist trained in the computer processing of human language and the computer modeling of human logical reasoning, and a widely recognized expert on the Prolog programming language. He is the author of nine books including Dictionary of Computer and Internet Terms, Seventh Edition (Barron's, 2000), Astrophotography for the Amateur (Cambridge, 1999), PROLOG Programming in Depth (Simon & Schuster, 1996), Cambridge Eclipse Photography Guide (1993), and Syntactic Theory in the High Middle Ages (Cambridge, 1985).A senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Covington is a Contributing Editor to, and former "Q&A" columnist of, Poptronics magazine. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Learning about telescopes book
Learning about Telescopes, this is a great first time /review of things you for got and thing you just didn't know how book.very helpful.

5-0 out of 5 stars Useful book for those new to goto scopes
If you have a goto scope it's very useful.I have a Celestron NexStar goto telescope, and have bought a book specific to NexStar scopes, and I still found this one helpful, especially on alighment.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Book your looking for!
If your looking for a clearly written, very informative, get you going in the right direction book, this is the one!

4-0 out of 5 stars How to Use a Computerized Telescope
This is a very clearly-written book and excellent for beginners. It breaks down the various topics of using a computerized telescope into manageable chapters.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very helpful book
I recently purchased a Celestron StarSeeker telescope (basically a NexStar80) so wanted to read more about computerized telescopes. Michael Covington's book is very good. He starts by saying "Welcome to amateur astronomy". The first part of the book then goes on to discuss telescopes in general, such as the different types (ie, refractors, reflectors and catadioptric) and much very helpful general information about observational astronomy. Things like celestial coordinates, how a telescope works, etc. Too much to put in this review but I found the information extremely helpful. The second section is about astrophotography including simple ways to do astrophotography without a lot of expensive equipment. This author also has a book on Astrophotography which I haven't read. He refers to it several times in this section of this book. The last section describes in quite a bit of detail the operation of 3 computerized telescopes, the Meade LX200, Celestron NexStar 5 and 8 and two Meade telescopes with Autostar, the ETX 90 and the LX 90. All of these telescopes are now outdated as both Meade and Celestron have newer models. However, what is said in this section would apply to the newer models to a large extent. Overall I enjoyed reading this book and obtained a lot of useful information and recommendations to start my budding career in amateur photography. One further note; there is another book by Michael Swanson that deals with just the Celestron NexStar telescopes. I have this book also but haven't finished reading it. If you are just interested in computerized telescopes in general, I would recommend the one in this review. If you have or are interested in a Celestron, then I would suggest the Michael Swanson book; actually I would recommend both. ... Read more

11. Star Ware: The Amateur Astronomer's Guide to Choosing, Buying, and Using Telescopes and Accessories
by Philip S. Harrington
Paperback: 432 Pages (2007-04-20)
list price: US$21.95 -- used & new: US$9.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0471750638
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Praise for Star Ware

"Star Ware is still a tour de force that any experienced amateur will find invaluable, and which hardware-minded beginners will thoroughly enjoy."

- Robert Burnham, Sky & Telescope magazine

"Star Ware condenses between two covers what would normally take a telescope buyer many months to accumulate."

- John Shibley, Astronomy magazine

Whether you're shopping for your first telescope or your fifth, don't be surprised if you feel overwhelmed by the dazzling array of product choices, bells and whistles, and the literature that describes them all. That's why you need Star Ware.

In this revised and updated Fourth Edition of the essential guide to comparing and selecting sky-watching equipment, award-winning astronomy writer Philip Harrington takes you telescope shopping the easy way. He analyzes and explains today's astronomy market and compares brands and models point by point. Star Ware gives you the confidence you need to buy the telescope and accessories that are right for you and the knowledge to get the most out of your new purchase, with:

Extensive, expanded reviews of leading models and accessories-including dozens of new products

A clear, step-by-step guide to every aspect of selecting telescopes, binoculars, filters, mounts, lenses, cameras, film, star charts, guides and references, and much more

Ten new do-it-yourself projects for building your own astronomical equipment

Easy tips on setting up, using, and caring for telescopes and other astronomical equipment

Lists of where to find everything astronomical, including Web sites and resources; distributors, dealers, and conventions; and corporate listings for products and services ... Read more

Customer Reviews (26)

5-0 out of 5 stars The first decent guide

This is pleasurable reading. As a coffee table flick through it stacks well above the rest. As a beginners guide to astonomy equipment, its purchase, and its correct use in all possible contexts it sits as the one and only guide both for northern and southern hemisphere viewing. The author reflects his passion and experience in the field of amatuer astronomy through fluid easy to read prose, guiding visual, and kinesthetic learners alike. The ease of the language reflects the authors very deep knowledge of the subject. There are plenty of asides ranging from historical trends, to club contacts and it even covers some amazing projects developed by ingenius amatuers all beautifully diagrammed and represented in the book. If your an experienced astronomer this book tells you things you might not know already. If your a beginner, then this book is a must to read before you make financial commitments. If your after some coffee table eye candy have this one along side your nat geos and home beautifulls. Something for the cosmic ponderer in ALL of us.

4-0 out of 5 stars Helpful telesope guidance
This book makes a nice complement to Rod Molise's book, "Chosing and Using a New CAT."Philip Harrington is less devoted to the catadioptric solution to telescope design, but the style, overall content, and usefulness of "Star Ware" are excellent.

I enjoyed this book very much.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good reference material
Very detailed, exhaustive.Gets the novice (me) off the starting block and into the action.A book can only do so much, however.You have to start visiting the stores and websites yourself.I appreciate all the little hints provided, such as a homemade anti-fogging device and a focusing lever.Harrington does his best to help beginners avoid or solve all the little problems that come an amateur astronomer's way.I recommend it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Where Every Beginner Should Start!
10-15 years ago a book like this really wouldn't even be needed but things are very different today. The amateur astronomer market has absolutely exploded with a plethora of different scopes and accessories. Even the seasoned veterans can find the market a bit daunting today. Well that is where Star Ware comes in and in all honesty this book should be on every amateur astronomers bookshelf regardless of their level of expertise. Its just an invaluable reference that covers all of the different gear available. Whats great about this book is it doesn't just cover the different types of scopes, it also gives you side by side comparisons of today's leading models.

The bottom line - If you are interested in buying astronomy gear then this is the very first purchase you should make. After reading this book you will have a much better understanding of the gear available and the gear best suited for the activities your interested in.

A must buy for all amateur astronomers!

5 Stars!

5-0 out of 5 stars Star Ware: The Amateur Astronomer's Guide to Choosing, Buying, and Using Telescoped and Accessories
Harrington's whole Star Ware series is a must read for anyone getting into the astronomy hobby. ... Read more

12. Star Testing Astronomical Telescopes: A Manual for Optical Evaluation and Adjustment
by Harold Richard Suiter
Hardcover: 413 Pages (2009-03-15)
list price: US$34.95 -- used & new: US$34.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0943396905
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Very detailed
Great book for getting an understanding of how to star test a telescope. The simulated star tests really highlight the differences between the individual aberrations. This is something it would be hard to get a feel for in real life, where each telescope has a number of faults of different degrees.

5-0 out of 5 stars very detailed for the advanced reader
This book has probably everything you may want to know about the theory of star testing. It is a purely theoretical book based on state of the art calculations of the diffraction phenomena in astronomical telescopes peformed and written by a physicist. The book includes a short summary of the most common observations for everybody who does not want to read the entire book (and that is probably 99.9% of the readers including myself). You can then go into the chapter of the particular effect you are interested in to read more detail, for example spherical abberation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great - for advanced amateur star-gazers
Mr. Suiter is a professional physicist whose avocation is star-gazing with modest amateur astronomical telescopes.His book bridges the gap between amateur and professional on the subject of telescope optics and performance.

This book is NOT for the beginner!It is dense, highly technical, very educational, and really is better suited to advanced amateur with a strong technical affinity.Though it is printed upon high quality paper with some very good computer generated graphics, it remains relatively slim, no more than an inch thick.

The book covers all the theory and practice needed to help align and collimate most amateur telescopes to the peak of their optical potential.He begins with the wave theory of light, and ends with a discourse on interpreting the multi-circular images one often sees of a star in and out of focus.

He creates a wonderful "model" of seeing as a stack of filters between your eye, and the objects you look at.Every sort of optical degradation imaginable is represented by one filter or another - air turbulence, optical misalignment, diffraction, optical imperfections, etc.Beyond this, he manages to sum up the effects of these filters in one all encompassing concept, call the Modulation Transfer Function.Essentially this conveys a sense of how well the telescope will perform varying feats of resolution and contrast.In some cases, a "defective" wavefront may provide superior resolution than is otherwise theoretically possible, though only at the expense of other image properties such as contrast.

Beginners, save your money.Advancing amateurs, this book is for you.This book requires hours of thoughtful study.An excellent tome for the Library, or the continuing ed program at the University of Porcelain.

4-0 out of 5 stars A MUST-HAVE BOOK
If you are an amateur telescope maker, avid amateur astronomer with a jones for hardware, or are just interested in optics--YOU NEED THIS BOOK.Some rather technical sections do not detract from the hands-on user knowledge that makes it popular.Your friends will think you are an optics expert when you critique their scopes, but more importantly, it will help you get the best perfromance from your own equipment.

It MUST be a GREAT book, as some used book dealers are asking double the new cost...and it's still in print!.

4-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent, Highly Technical Book
This is THE definitive book on the topic (outside of professional literature), and Suiter does an excellent job of presenting the material in a logical way, with clear diagrams, excellent photos, and in-depthdiscussion of the theory behind the technique.

For those amateurs lookingfor basic information on how to star test their own telescopes quickly,Chapter 2, An Abbreviated Star Test Manual (17 pages) will give you all theinformation needed to accomplish this goal. Subsequent chapters expand onspecific problems and (most importantly) advice on correcting the observedproblems, as well provided a theoretical basis for tests.

Of special noteis section 5.2, which describes the use of artificial sources, allowing"star" testing to be done in the daytime. The formulas in this sectionallow one construct and use an artificial source withconfidence.

Appendix A includes a review of other common optical tests,and discusses their strengths and weaknesses.

Not sure your telescope isworking as well as it should? With its extensive and easy to comparediagrams, this book, a high powered eyepiece and a star should quickly tellyou how well your `scope measures up. In many cases, it will also give yousound advice on how to fix the problems you may find. And for those readerswho want to understand the theory, its all there also. ... Read more

13. So You Want a Meade LX Telescope!: How to Select and Use the LX200 and Other High-End Models (Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series)
by Lawrence Harris
Paperback: 191 Pages (2010-05-04)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$26.11
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1441917748
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The Meade LX200 series of telescopes was introduced in 1992 and represented a giant step forward in technology for amateur astronomers - computer control. The LX200 series telescopes were an instant success and have outsold all other astronomical telescopes put together. Steady development has continued to the present day, and LX200s are available in a range of apertures from 8-inch through the giant 16-inch, which is widely installed in university astronomy departments and the smaller public observatories. For anyone considering buying a high-end Meade telescope, the book offers an experienced user's guide to what can actually be achieved with it.

So You Want a Meade LX Telescope also provides detailed discussions about some of the many software packages available to aid optimizing and actually using the scope. The typical results are discussed so readers can know what to expect. Also reviewed are essential accessories such as CCD cameras and the latest Active Optics units.

These extraordinary telescopes are capable of amazing results, but using them and setting them up can be a chore. That's why this book is essential reading for anyone who has bought or upgraded to an LX200 or its top-of-the-range companion, the RCS400 (later re-designated the LX400ACF).

... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars so you want to use your computer to run your telescope!
this is certainly a useful and well written text, but it does not live up to its title, does not fill an important need within a brand category such as meade telescopes, and does not recognize the specific categories of amateur and semipro astronomers or the way they approach a telescope. my comments emphasize the disparity between the book's title and contents, and the fact that the contents are in fact highly specialized: they certainly don't tell you how to select a telescope!

the first heading on the first page is "computers and astronomy," and roughly 150 of the book's 230 pages consists of chapters such as "essential software for basic operations," "software adjustment of polar alignment," "autoguiding," "using advanced software" and so forth. another 40 pages is devoted to balancing and polar alignment, the different types of telescopes, generic telescope accessories, updating firmware, telescope retailers and online user groups. i judge only about 30 pages or less than 15% of the book is actually concerned with meade specific products or guidelines for their use.

it's a shame, because the meade user manual appears to have been written by a retired engineer, full of facts but meager with guidance. what is the best way to position the tripod on unpaved soil, or use the gps system, or update location or time information, or autoalign the scope? when autoalignment fails, why does that happen? how should one transport the scope, or store it (batteries left in, or taken out?), care for the optics, or clean dirty optics? how does one ventilate or cool down the scope prior to viewing? what specifically does "advanced coma free" (ACF) optics mean, and how specifically do ACF optics differ from newtonian, cassegrainian or ritchey-chretien optics? what are the best eyepieces to use for different circumstances, and which are the recommended manufacturers? on all these practical and highly important issues, both harris and the manufacturer user guide have nothing at all to offer.

the other drawback is that astronomers come in flavors: the big divide is between the visual observers (with their lifetime checklists of the messier 110 or herschel 400) and the astrophotographers (with their CCD cameras); the visual observers divide further into variable star, near earth object or deep sky observers, to name only three. each group prefers different strategies for organizing their night time viewing, right down to the ways they use star atlases and sky software to plan out the sequence of galactic locations and viewing times for objects they intend to observe and the eyepieces or filters they will use. these activities are all software related: harris says nothing about them. worse, in the 30 pages where he does talk about meade products, he rather annoyingly speaks of the meade LX400 (which he owns) as the "top of the line" scope, and the LX200 as "also very good", omitting the more obvious and important facts that meade no longer makes the LX400 scope, the LX400 actually *must be* computer controlled and, because of its shorter focal length and larger secondary mirror, is better suited for astrophotography than visual observing.

again, this book has quite a lot of useful and well presented information on aligning, collimating and controlling a telescope with computer software and the primarily photographic application of a telescope operated by computer. for any information outside that narrow bailiwick ... you're still stuck with the meade user guide.

5-0 out of 5 stars Needed this book years ago.
Patrick Moore's book is a great find and I could have used it years ago but even today I find the information and presentation perfect for me as an owner of a Meade 10" LX200GPS.Great book very informative and packed with useful information. ... Read more

14. Astronomy with Small Telescopes: Up to 5-inch, 125 mm (Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series)
Paperback: 158 Pages (2001-04-20)
list price: US$49.95 -- used & new: US$19.92
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1852336293
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Author has brought together the experience of small telescope users to provide an insightful look into just what is possible. Written for newcomers to astronomy and experts. Softcover. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

1-0 out of 5 stars Not what it say's on the tin.
Another collection essays by a number of people that purports to be "by" Stephen Tonkin. "Edited by", and inexpertly at that, would be more accurate. Please don't buy this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Interesting Book
This book has some interesting and intriguing ideas for owners of any telescope, not just ones that are 5 inches or less, as suggested by the book.I own an 8 inch Celestron Nexstar 8se, and I found the techniques for observation as suggested in the book to be very useful.

3-0 out of 5 stars Ten telescope essays plus one
This book is a collection of essays on experiences using small telescopes for observing the heavens. The discussions range from 60mm refractors thru 5 in. "go to" scopes, including a home made 4 in. Newtownian. There is also a short essay on radio astronomy which seems out of place in this text. This book would have been served by better organization. Some of the essays have good insights on observing with these small telescopes, but it pays to look through all the essays, even for those not dealing with the specific telescope one owns or is interested in.This book was published with beginners in mind, but the organization of the book may leave a beginner confused. This is a bit below the average of books in the "Practical Astronomy" series, but a good starting point for owners of telescopes 5 in. in diameter and smaller. The "Radio Telescope" essay, though out of place in this text, gives an insight into non-visual astronomy open to the amatuer astronomer. ... Read more

15. Choosing and Using a Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope : A Guide to Commercial SCTs and Maksutovs (Practical Astronomy.)
by Rod Mollise
Paperback: 357 Pages (2001-04-20)
list price: US$59.95 -- used & new: US$24.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1852336315
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Handbook for the selection, purchase and use of a Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope, for experienced astronomers. Provides tips, hints, and general wisdom on the tricky aspects of using an SCT or Makustov telescope. Softcover. DLC: Schmidt telescopes--Handbooks, manuals, etc. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Choosing and Using a Schmidt-Cassegrain Telescope
If you're an SCT (CAT) owner, you definitely need to read Ron Mollise's book. His decades of experience with this telescope will help you in realizing why this is such a capable - and fun - instrument. I've also benefited from a few of his ideas that have paid for the purchase of this book. He takes you from assembling your CAT to astrophotography - great read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Learning about types of telescopes book
Learning about telescope,how they work ,what you will spend, this is a great first time /review of things you forgot and thing you just didn't know how book.very helpful.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Book--Probably the Best on the Subject
Simple:If you are looking to purchase, use, rent, own, lease, research a telescope, then buy this book.This book is, probably, the best, most concise, and helpful book on the subject of "choosing" and "using" a SC Telescope.No kidding.5/5 stars.

5-0 out of 5 stars Lot's of Good Info
I am in the market for a new SCT and this book came in handy in helping me make my choice. Having direct access to the author through a user group helped also, which leads me to the only negative remark I have to make...time for a second edition! My the times are changin and there are new scopes which need reviewing and explaining. So please Mr. Mollise, come out with a revised edition! Thanks!!

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource, covers many aspects of SCT design and use
Rod Mollise is an excellent writer who keeps the reader's attention from cover to cover. This is a good resource to own regardless of your level of expertise or interest level. I enjoy Rod's posts and SCT-USER discussion Group on the Internet and this book is a good extension of his encyclopedic knowledge of all things SCT. ... Read more

16. Stargazer: The Life and Times of the Telescope
by Fred Watson
Paperback: 368 Pages (2006-06-12)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$1.49
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Asin: 0306814838
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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"An elegant text.... [A]nyone interested in the history of invention or of astronomy will find this book rewarding." (Science News)

The history of the telescope is a rich story of human ingenuity and perseverance involving some of the most colorful figures of the scientific world- Galileo, Johann Kepler, Isaac Newton, William Herschel, George Ellery Hale, and Edwin Hubble.Stargazer brings to life these brilliant, if sometimes quirky, scientists as they turned their eyes and ideas to the stars. Written by one of Australia's top astronomers, Stargazer reveals lucidly, and without technical jargon (but with a dash of humor), the history, science, and technology behind the telescope, and the enormous impact that it has had for four hundred years on how we have come to understand our universe.

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Customer Reviews (14)

5-0 out of 5 stars "Stargazer"--the story of the telescope
Books about science should be written by literate scientists--they are the ones to tell the real stories, not superficial versions padded with hyperbole, so often found in bookstores and libraries. Fred Watson knows telescopes, knows history--also knows the lives of the oddballs who created them, and the technical niceties. And being Australian, he has the gift of informal humor peculiar (perhaps) to a continent setttled be convicts.

Read the book, and if some of the technology is too detailed, just skim it and keep swimming. Watson starts with the giant telescopes of the present and the near future, and the relentless competition in building them. Then he backtracks toHans Lipperhey, inventor of the telescope whose secret was foolishly leaked. He shows how Newton was not the originator of the mirror telescope, but built the first successful one, because he also invented the pitch-block method of grinding mirrors, still used by amateurs.Read about the Dollond monopoly, about the Herschels, Fraunhofer and many others, all the way to Bernard Schmidt who lost an arm playing withgunpowder as a kid and who in later life loved alcohol, yet designed an exquisitely different telescope, providing an extremely wide view.

It's all there, and much more. If you have a friend who's an amateur astronomer, this book makes a great gift. If you are one yourself, make sure to have your own copy, too.

David P. Stern, Greenbelt, Maryland

4-0 out of 5 stars The Telescope's History "Once Over Lightly"
When individuals such as Galileo first turned a new invention, the telescope, on the nighttime skies about 1600 they began a process that has revolutionized humanity's understanding of the visible universe. Fred Watson's short history and commentary seeks to record the evolution of the telescope from the first simple tubes to the modern instrument. This is an accessible history, understandable to virtually all readers and for those without a basic background in astronomy a helpful glossary explains terms while another appendix catalogs what the author refers to as "The World's Great Telescopes."

Of course, the early history of the telescope is steeped in myth. Galileo, often believed to be its inventor, first heard about telescopes in 1608 and immediately grasped their importance for astronomy. He employed one in his observations and in 1609 discovered the first moons of Jupiter, setting in train a set of circumstances that transformed the human vision of the heavens. Fred Watson is at his best in describing this story, and in explaining the technology that Galileo and other early astronomers used. His was a refracting telescope, defined as "a telescope whose main light-collecting component is a convex glass lens or combination of lenses" (pp. 326-27). But refractors were prone to spherical aberrations and other anomalies, hence the rise of another type of telescope, the reflector. These telescopes used a concave mirror to collect and focus light, and found spectacular application by such scientists as Isaac Newton. While the optics, pointing systems, materials used, and other peripherals have become much more complicated over time, those two basic types of telescopes remain dominant within astronomy to this day.

Watson proceeds chronologically through the history of the telescope, focusing on the efforts of the great builders, which have often also been its most prominent users. He pauses to tell the fascinating story of William and Caroline Herschel, the sibling team who built massive (at least for their time) telescopes and explored the heavens with path-breaking results at the height of the Enlightenment in the latter eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Likewise, he discussed the efforts of George Ellery Hale to build and use the largest telescopes available in the nineteenth century, as well as William Parsons, George Willis Ritchie, Richard Reeve, and many others.

In the period since World War II, which only receives one chapter in this book, telescopes and the science they support underwent enormous change as astronomers substantively moved beyond the visible light spectrum to observe the skies in IR, UV, and other frequencies not registered by the human eye. Likewise, the placement of telescopes on spacecraft changed the situation as well. Both of these moves, as well as others of a more subtle nature transformed astronomy. Fred Watson discusses, but does not dwell on, these changes.

In many ways "Stargazer: The Life and Times of the Telescope" provides a fine introduction to the history of the telescope. It is not a sophisticated historical work, and readers will want to look elsewhere for more complex historical analysis. But it provides a fine "once over lightly" narrative.

4-0 out of 5 stars Decent overview of the history of telescopes and those who used and made them
_Stargazer: The Life and Times of the Telescope_ by Fred Watson is an epic, far-ranging history of one of the most important instruments in science. Watson traced the origin and development of the telescope from nearly four hundred years ago, when Dutch craftsmen Hans Lipperhey first brought to the world's attention the telescope in 1608 (the author demonstrated that though he gets credit for first bringing it to international attention, he is perhaps not the instrument's original inventor, as there were at least several near simultaneous separate inventions of it), all the way to the present with the impressive orbiting Hubble telescope.

The book is at times as much a history of astronomy as it is of the telescope, chronicling some of the lives of such luminaries as Galileo, Johannes Kepler, William Herschel, and George Ellery Hale and many of the big discoveries, such as the discoveries of the cloud belts of Jupiter, Saturn's rings, the planet Uranus, the moons of Mars, and the first spiral galaxy. Some of the most interesting accounts were of people and discoveries virtually unknown to the general public, such as that of William Gascoigne, a brilliant man who invented the telescopic sight by accident when he saw a spider drop between the objective and the eyepiece, leaving a thread behind it, leading him to develop two crossed threads that would enable an astronomer to point precisely at a star, and who also invented another device (also used in the focus of any eyepiece) that allowed for measuring the angular diameter of the Sun or Moon and the distances between close pairs of stars. Tragically, his life was cut short when he was killed in the Battle of Marston Moor in 1644, part of the English Civil War (he was only 24).

The focus of the book however was on the origin and evolution of the telescope, the author detailing each new development in telescope technology, supplying the reader with diagrams to discern the inner workings of such advancements as the Keplerian or inverting telescope (one in which the field of view is independent of the diameter of the objective, replacing some of the problems with the Galilean telescope) and the Cassegrain telescope (one that used a convex secondary mirror to intercept the beam from the main paraboloid mirror before it formed an image, refocusing it back in such as way that an image was formed that could be magnified with an ordinary lens eyepiece behind the mirror). Of near equal importance was the evolution of telescope mounts, devices that held the telescope and allowed it to track the movement of celestial objects across the sky. Though there were some contemporary illustrations of various mounts, I wish there had been more diagrams for such arrangements as the equatorial mounting, English equatorial, and German equatorial to assist the lay reader.

Problems in telescope development were discussed, issues that bedeviled generations of astronomers and engineers, including chromatic aberration (when colored halos appear around images, a problem that mystified astronomers for many decades and was not corrected until two or more lenses were used in combination, lenses whose respective color errors would cancel each other out), comas (when stars take on the appearance of comets with short tails), and spherical aberration (a blurring of images resulting from objective lenses with curved surfaces, as the focused beams of light from a celestial object would fail to cross at a single point).

The history of famous and noteworthy individual telescopes was a very interesting feature of the book. Early telescope makers solved the problems of chromatic and spherical aberration by making the focal length of an objective very long in comparison with its diameter, reducing both aberrations to a level that would not be noticeable, resulting in long, spindly telescopes. Johannes Hevelius, a seventeenth century amateur in the city of Danzig, built a monstrous telescope whose focal length was 150 feet long, supported from a mast 90 feet high, its working more like the rigging of a sailing ship than an optical instrument, so ungainly that a fair number of men were needed to move and point it in the right direction and that any breeze would leave it quivering uncontrollably, making observation difficult. Another notable one is William Herschel's Forty-foot telescope, a massive for the time 48 inches in diameter, the telescope that he is best remembered for and one that still adorns the seal of the Royal Astronomical Society, an expensive object that would not have come to fruition without financial support from King George III (an early forerunner of national funding for scientific projects), and that when it came into use in 1789 proved something of a disappointment, thanks to high copper content of the mirrors (which tarnished rapidly and required frequent repolishing), difficult to manage without two additional workmen, and of course the famous British weather (though the telescope was maintained despite regular scientific usage to impress the King's guests as after all he did pay for it). Still another one was the Irish telescope named the Leviathan of Parsonstown, a massive telescope that was first used in 1845, its four tonne mirror taking sixteen weeks to cool once cast (and had to be cast five times owing to faulty cooling and accidents), an instrument that while it did produce some good science (discovering sixty "spiral nebulae" - they weren't know as galaxies yet), did not live up to its full potential, thanks to attentions being focused elsewhere due to the catastrophic potato famine of 1845-1848, and was dismantled in the early 20th century though between 1996 and 1998 it was lovingly restored to full working order with a new aluminum mirror and a modern hydraulic system to move it.

A good book, I thought some of the explanations could have been better.It had many contemporary illustrations, copious endnotes, an extensive bibliography, a glossary, a listing of famous telescopes today, and a global map showing their relative positions in the world today.

3-0 out of 5 stars Worth reading for the telescope lover, but ...
This is a book I really wanted to like, and I don't regret reading it. That said, this is more a book for people interested in learning a few more details about the pre-1900 history of the telescope than a book to get someone excited about the development of the telescope.

Overall the prose is serviceable, if a bit pedestrian. But it is uneven, with some excellent passages and some that are a bit of a slog. Up through the late nineteenth century the author presents all the major threads of the story, but toward the end the book becomes more a series of highlights rather than a survey of developments. My sense in reading it was that the author ran out of steam and couldn't handle the twentieth century in the depth he managed for earlier epochs. Recent developments in eight to ten meter telescopes are barely mentioned. He provides a superficial discussion of radio telescopes, but doesn't mention solar telescopes. Space telescopes are briefly mentioned, but their history is barely scratched. The epilogue, looking back from year 2108, is more cute that informative.

Yes, read this book if you are interested in telescopes. But be prepared for a sense of unfulfilled promise, as this book could have been so much more ...

5-0 out of 5 stars A satisfying blend of history and science which charts the telescope's invention, evolution, importance, and modern abilities
At the heart of any astronomical discussion is the telescope, which brought the science to life; so at the heart of any school or public library holding including astrology should be Fred Watson's Stargazer: The Life And Times Of The Telescope, a satisfying blend of history and science which charts the telescope's invention, evolution, importance, and modern abilities. Dr. Watson is Astronomer-in-Charge of the Anglo-Australian Observatory in Australia, responsible for the scientific output of the country's largest optical telescope: this survey Stargazer provides a pleasing modern history.
... Read more

17. Looking Through a Telescope (Rookie Read-About Science)
by Linda Bullock
Paperback: 32 Pages (2004-03)
list price: US$4.95 -- used & new: US$1.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0516279068
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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From friendly dolphins to giant pandas, from icebergs and glaciers to energy from the sun, from magnets to solids, liquids, and gases, Rookie Read-About Science is a natural addition to the primary-grade classroom with books that cover every part of the science curricula. Includes: animals, nature, scientific principles, the environment, weather, and much more! ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

4-0 out of 5 stars Nice little book
Not much script on each page but is still informative. Good with first telescope for 6+

5-0 out of 5 stars Terrific Little Science Series!
Rookie Readers provide sophisticated information in an easy reading text.Great for my ESOL students.I really thought this book was helpful because research with a telescope might be overlooked in science class.My students may have never heard about a telescope before coming to America. ... Read more

18. Amateur Telescope Making (Patrick Moore's Practical Astronomy Series)
Paperback: 260 Pages (1998-12-11)
list price: US$54.95 -- used & new: US$35.41
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1852330007
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Many amateur astronomers make their own instruments, either because of financial considerations or because they are just interested. Amateur Telescope Making offers a variety of designs for telescopes, mounts and drives which are suitable for the home-constructor. The designs range from simple to advanced, but all are within the range of a moderately well-equipped home workshop. Thus each chapter begins with reasons for undertaking the project, then looks at theoretical consideration before finishing with practical instructions and advice. An indication is given as to the skills required for the various projects. Appendices list reputable sources of (mail order) materials and components. The telescopes and mounts range from "shoestring" (very cheap) instruments to specialist devices that are unavailable commercially. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

2-0 out of 5 stars A little disappointing
The book is not a clear, step by step book.It could stand major revisions.

3-0 out of 5 stars I would say semi - amateur telescope making
As with other books I have read about telescope making, the writer chooses to focus on mirror grinding principles and on his own projects. The lack of basic formulas to constructing telescopes is very disapointing. Nevertheless it is a very good book to read for those who already have the basic skills and are probably moving to their second or third project. So as I claim in the title... I believe this book is for "semi - amateur" telescope builders!

2-0 out of 5 stars DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY
This is an edited book with different authors contributing an article each. Thus these is no coherency. It seems that the editor had asked each contributing author to just give an article about his or her telescope making experience. Thus all the chapters are separate entities without any cross-references (between chapters). Finally they do not go in any detail what so ever. It is more like a "1001 Project Book" which claims that (after reading the book) you can do every thing from repairing cars, TVs, VCR, DVDs to building an airplane, except that the book only devote half a page to all the 1001 projects. You just cannot make a telescope by reading this book (unless you already know how to make one).

BTW: you can find more information on the web than what this book delivers. I am just glad that I borrowed it from the library, and did not buy it.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great telescope making book for anyone.......
We are an amateur astronomy loving family who got into making our own telescopes after getting involved in the Friday night telescope classes and lectures at the Chabot observatory in Oakland California back in the early 80's.

And being homeschoolers we were also big science fans and have always encouraged people to become as hands on science minded as possible.This books is a perfect example of hands on science at its best as well as a book that should put to rest the idea that only rich people own telescopes or that only people with science degrees use telescope.

The book is shy 300 pages and covers everything from Shoestring telescopes you can make, using items you have around the house as well as items you can find for free at carpet stores. Specialized telescopes is about building a high contrast planetary setup, as well as Rright camera.There is an excellent section on mounts.I would hope every library would own a copy of the book and believe that every homeschooling family should as well.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good for ideas
Unlike conventional ATM books, this one does not cover basic work. Either use available optics for the simple stuff, or you will have to make stuff for the more advanced projects.

There are some excellent designs for DIY mounts and drives. ... Read more

19. Space: Views from the Hubble Telescope 2011 Wall Calendar
by Scientific American
Calendar: 12 Pages (2010-07-30)
list price: US$13.99 -- used & new: US$7.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0764953087
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From its launch in 1990, the Hubble Space Telescope has given us unprecedented views of the far reaches of space with its extraordinary high-resolution images, sparking the public's imagination and providing astronomers with new information about the dynamics and evolution of the universe. Each of this calendar's twelve awe-inspiring Hubble images is accompanied by a description of the celestial phenomenon depicted. Important dates in the history of space exploration, as well as current astronomical events, are noted throughout.

Published with Scientific American. Size: 12 x 13 in.; opens to 12 x 26 in. Printed on FSC certified paper with soy-based ink. ... Read more

20. A Simple Guide to Telescopes, Spotting Scopes and Binoculars
by Bill Corbett
Paperback: 128 Pages (2003-10-01)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$1.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0817458883
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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The world of telescopes, spotting scopes, and binoculars can be quite daunting to the uninitiated. Part buyer's guide, part instruction manual, this one-of-a-kind reference sorts out all the essential details. Not only will readers receive a foundation in such basics as telescope types, accessories, adjustments, and maintenance, they'll also discover tested techniques for successful viewing at sporting events, viewing landscapes and terrain, as well as basic star gazing. Finally, star charts and other astronomy references show readers how to navigate around the heavens and photograph specific objects in the night sky. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book For The Amateur Astronomer
This was the first of several books I purchased to learn about telescopes and astronomy. It's a great book for newbies. Author Bill Corbett does an excellent job of presenting the material in an easy to understand approach. I go back to it periodically to refresh my memory. We used it to decide on our first telescope purchase.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great layout, photos, diagrams-- Organized well
This thin book is chock full of useful information for the person getting started with their first telescope.

It is very well designed and organized, with tons of photos and diagrams, making it a fun read.

I went to the bookstore looking for Star Ware when I found this book. Star Ware had absolutely no photos and had pages upon pages of technical jargon, whereas this book explained in interesting and simple terms the basics of telescopes, both in purchasing, setting up and using.

I purchased the book and will keep it as a reference / guide now that I've read it.

... Read more

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