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What is a Dobsonian Telescope?

“The importance of a telescope is not how big it is. It’s not how well made it is. It’s how many people less fortunate than you got to look through it.”

John Dobson

Well, there is no doubt that some people are pretty curious about the universe. You may be one of them who wants to explore the sky and observe the stars, nebulae, and planets. And it is impossible to experience this if you do not have a telescope. Having a telescope might not be easy for you as telescopes are relatively high in price, and also, the method of using them is a little bit complicated. So using the telescope was like a thing for professionals only. There was a tiny place for amateur astronomers. 

In 1965, an amateur astronomer named John Dobson came with a brilliant idea for the amateur astronomers that changed telescopes’ history for good. He came up with a telescope that was budget-friendly and easy to use. That telescope was named after the “Dobsonian Telescope.”  



What is a Dobsonian Telescope? 



A Dobsonian telescope is a type of Newtonian telescope; to be more specific, it is a reflecting telescope. It is an altazimuth-mount telescope, which means it has a two-axis mount that supports an instrument’s rotation about two perpendicular axes. And they are vertical and horizontal. This type of mount is a widespread thing in a telescope. Unlike the traditional telescopes that use costly pyrex glass for mirrors,  Dobsonian telescopes use glass made out of surplus ship porthole for the mirror.  The other parts of the Dobsonian telescope are made out of cheap materials as well. 

Dobsonian telescopes are best for observing deep-sky objects like galaxies and the nebulae. This telescope provides a large objective diameter to see the items. 


Structure of a Dobsonian Telescope


Structure of a Dobsonian Telescope

In the 1960s, John Dobson came with the idea of the Dobsonian telescope. It is quite a giant telescope that uses a straightforward mechanism. Dobsonian telescope is a combination of Newtonian reflector telescope and a two-axis base which is movable. It has a primary mirror that captures the light. Also, the primary mirror reflects the light as well. There is a secondary mirror that works to direct the light into an eyepiece. Dobsonian telescope uses a focuser that makes adjustments while viewing an object.


How Does a Dobsonian Telescope Work?

A Dobsonian telescope works like a Newtonian telescope. The mirrors in this telescope are aligned to view the target object. The primary mirror captures the light and reflects the light. The secondary mirror directs the light to the eyepiece thus how a Dobsonian telescope works and allows you to see the objects in the night sky. 


How to Use a Dobsonian Telescope? 


How to Use a Dobsonian Telescope

First of all, you need to set up your telescope. Set your telescope according to the view. Check your finderscope and the eyepiece. If they are in place, it is high time to track your favorite object or the thing you want to observe. For more information, check our article How to use a Dobsonian telescope.  


What Can You See Through a Dobsonian Telescope? 

Dobsonian telescope provides you a larger view of the night sky from both vertical and horizontal views. You can see the dim objects with it. The Moon, the bright planets, bright binary stars, bright open and globular clusters, bright nebulae, and bright galaxies can be observed with a Dobsonian telescope. 


Is a Dobsonian Telescope Good?

Dobsonian telescopes are not only useful. They are just like a blessing for the mature astronomers. They give you the experience to enjoy the view of the night sky. Compared to other telescopes, they are budget-friendly. You can easily set this telescope as it is very much user-friendly. Not only that, you can make one for yourself at home using very cheap materials.  


What is a Dobsonian Telescope Used for?

Dobsonian telescopes are made so that you can observe the dim objects in the night sky. This telescope offers you an excellent diameter range to keep Astro objects. You can see star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies with your Dobsonian telescope. 


What is the Difference between a Dobsonian and a Reflector telescope?

The Dobsonian telescope is one type of reflecting telescope. Theoretically, they are quite the same. But there are some differences. The mount of the telescopes is not the same. Most of the reflecting telescopes use an equatorial mount. But Dobsonian telescopes do not have equatorial mounts. Typical Dobsonian telescopes are featured with an altazimuth mount.  


Can You Take Pictures with a Dobsonian Telescope?

Yes, you can take pictures with a Dobsonian telescope. You need a good quality camera for that. Align the lens of the camera with the eyepiece of the Dobsonian telescope very carefully. Fix the magnification. Focus on your targeted object. Now take a shot. This is how you can take pictures using a Dobsonian telescope. 


What is the Difference Between a Newtonian and Dobsonian Telescope?

Newtonian and Dobsonian telescopes are quite the same in many ways. A Newtonian refers to a telescope’s optic, whereas a Dobsonian telescope refers to a Newtonian telescope with specific features. The only difference between these telescopes is the mount option. A Dobsonian telescope is always featured with an alt-azimuth mount. But a Newtonian telescope uses an equatorial mount.  


How Much Does it Cost to Build a Dobsonian Telescope?

You can build a Dobsonian telescope in between 300-500 USD. A Dobsonian telescope is a very budget-friendly telescope. It does not require a high-priced outer shell or a pyrex mirror like other telescopes. Dobsonian telescopes require cheap parts and ordinary mirrors made from surplus ship portholes. It won’t take more than 300 Usd to build a Dobsonian telescope.  



Things to consider before buying a Dobsonian Telescope 



You need to check the following things before purchasing a Dobsonian telescope.

  • Check the finderscope of the telescope. It is essential to have a great view. 
  • The eyepiece of the telescope has to be of outstanding quality. 
  • The parts of the telescope should be made out of fine materials. 
  • Check the price of the telescope. 


Conclusion



A Dobsonian telescope is a very handy and user-friendly telescope for amateurs. Also, it is very budget-friendly at the same time. So if you are thinking about buying a telescope for your interest, we suggest purchasing a Dobsonian telescope. If you wish to know more about this telescope or something related to astrology, leave your query in the comment section. We will get back to you as soon as possible.

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