Telementor user since:
Observing Site Classification:
Preferred sky objects:
Double Stars, Moon
Telementor's best view:
Cor Caroli (portability to observe it)
Zeiss AS 100/1000, Celestron C-11
Do you remember the
first day using your refractor?. Experiences?, Observing?. Did you remember
the date (year)?
My Telementor arrived on
a May afternoon in 1999. After a long unsuccessful search in the U.S.,
I had finally looked elsewhere and had located an OTA in Germany. As I
waited the two long weeks for the scope to arrive, I contemplated the dealer's
"it's like-new" claim and wondered if this would prove true. Now as I carefully
cut through several layers of bubble wrap and tape, I was thinking that
the dealer must have wanted the scope to arrive "as claimed", and as it
emerged from the cocoon, I knew he was right - not a nick, scratch or smudge.
In my hands the "feel" was
unlike any other scope I had held; I thought to myself "wow, this is heavy
for a 2.5 inch". I tried the unusual focuser -smooth; so out the door I
went for a "look-see". My first mount was the railing of my deck and the
first target - an electrical transformer on a pole at the end of my driveway,
about 300' away. I popped in a 9mm ortho and focused on the cut-out fuse
at the top. As I twisted the focus knob, "10 amp" came into view; tack
sharp with barely a trace of color in the broad daylight. I couldn't wait
That evening provided only
a short period of observing with a quarter moon and high clouds sporting
some large holes. Though I don't believe that diffraction patterns will
tell the whole story about a scopes optical quality, it seems I am drawn
to check them out first, with every new scope.
The patterns were excellent,
"textbook" on both sides of focus and appeared to be near identical,
which was something I had rarely seen in scopes I have examined. I swung
the mount over to the moon and at 93X verified the optical quality. The
detail surrounding Copernicus was amazing for a 2.5". I added a barlow
and at over 70X per inch, the view was still sharp with excellent contrast.
I stopped here, time and clouds cut my first night with the Telementor
short. Excited, I called it a night; very pleased with the new arrival.
Which is you favourite
observing site?. Conditions of the site (weather, limiting magnitude, altitude,
transparency, "seeing".., etc)?
I primarily observe from
my backyard observatory, located on a 33'-high hill about 200' from the
house. I live in the Hiawatha National Forest in the upper peninsula of
Michigan, USA and enjoy skies which normally approach 6.0 mag. Of course
there are drawbacks to the site - a long, cold and snowy winter, as well
as a fair amount of cloudy skies brought on by the surrounding Great Lakes
- Superior (about 1 mile to the north) and Michigan (35 mile to the south).
However clear nights are very good and a pleasure to experience.
What type of sky objects
do you prefer to observe with your Telementor/Telemator?
Though I often observe and
image the moon with my C11, the target of choice for the Telementor has
been double stars. And the 2.5 incher has been a worthy competitor, exceeding
80X per inch on nights of excellent seeing. That would be about 900X for
my 11" SCT, which is unimaginable.
What is your best
achieved view or the most incredible view you have got with the Telementor?.
What is the most beautiful sky object observed with your refractor?
The optical quality of the
Zeiss has given me many memorable views over the two years I have owned
it. However, interestingly, the most memorable had more to do with the
observing location than the scope itself; which says a lot about the portability
of a small instrument. The instance took place during the "Olympic Doubles"
observing project held by the "Spirit of 33" doubles group on Yahoogroups.
The target was Cor Caroli in Canes Venatici. While not difficult under
normal circumstances, this was late September and Canes Venatici was setting
shortly after nightfall. The only way I would have a chance would be to
have a near-flat horizon to the west. I took up position, about 8 miles
from my home, in a park along cliffs overlooking Lake Superior. With the
waves hitting the rocks 150' below and a horizon kissing the lake, far
in the distance, Cor Caroli was an easy challenge for the Telementor. However,
enjoying a peaceful sunset among the natural beauty with my trusty Zeiss
and nabbing an elusive target at the same time, was the type of observing
experience that bonds an observer to his scope. At least, that is what
it did for me.
What eyepieces do
you use?. Other accesories?
As I mentioned before, I
was only able to locate a bare OTA when I purchased my Telementor. I have
added two Zeiss orthoscopic eyepieces - a 10mm and 16mm. Both have excellent
contrast and it is no wonder why these are so hard to find in the States.
I have looked for some time and continue to look for a 6mm ortho, but without
success. Instead, I normally use one of a full set of Vixen orthos as my
primary eyepiece with the Zeiss. I have also investigated getting an original
Zeiss mount, but this too has evaded me. I use my Telementor on a Vixen
Super Polaris mount, which handles the 7 lb. scope with ease. In fact,
the Vixen SP handles my 14 lb. 100mm Zeiss well and I consider it one of
the best mid-sized mounts ever made (I have two). For accessories, I own
a 2" Zeiss mirror star diagonal and adapters to handle both .965' and 1.25"
Even these small Zeiss products
exhibit a quality that shows a real pride of workmanship. In fact, everything
I have purchased from this company has been of the best quality. My Telementor
oozes quality and has been a pleasure to own and I have been very pleased
with it. So much so, that I was prompted to search for and acquire a 100mm
Zeiss refractor (which is the largest refractor that I would personally
Have you compared
the small Zeiss with other telescopes?. What were your experiences on this?
I have only been able to
compare my Telementor to a 3" Unitron that I previously owned. The Unitron
brand is highly respected in the U.S. and considered of high quality. For
instance, when I recently sold it in order to obtain the 100mm, I received
more inquiries concerning it than any other astronomy related item I have
ever sold. However, the Telementor in a side-by-side comparison with the
Unitron, won in every category - quality of construction, contrast, and
sharpness. The Unitron should have better resolution, being slightly larger,
but with such a small difference, this was hard for me to determine. The
Telementor is still here, the Unitron was sacrificed for his big brother
- enough said.
I had read about the Telementor
over the years and had looked over the ads in the astronomy magazines,
but what made me begin my search that resulted in purchasing one, came
from a rather unlikely source. I was perusing the Internet one day and
came across an humorous site: http://users.vnet.net/heafnerj/foxworthy.html.
Among the many jokes were some from a very noted amateur in the U.S. amateur
community - Jay Freeman. He is a long time observer and a contributor to
astronomy publications and Internet sites. Anyway, included in his "one-liners"
was: "You know you're a planetary observer if...you actually own a Zeiss
Telementor". It was meant to be humorous, of course, but it got me thinking.
There had to be something to the reputation and owner loyalty that these
small scopes had accumulated over the years and I was going to find out
just what it was. "The rest is history".as they say.