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Category >>   Telescope Books
   Telescope books aplenty! How to choose and buy a telescope. How to build a telescope. How to use a telescope.
Star Ware by Philip S. Harrington   Star Ware
The Amateur Astronomer's Guide to Choosing, Buying, and Using Telescopes and Accessories

by Philip S. Harrington
432 pages, 4th Edition, April 2007
Level: All Levels

Highly Recommended

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Thinking of buying a telescope? Don't be fooled by all the marketing hype. This book is the ultimate source of unbiased information about buying a telescope and other astronomical equipment.

This is the fourth edition of Phil Harrington's popular and comprehensive guide to astronomical equipment. Written for both new astronomers as well as experienced amateurs it includes numerous tips and tricks from other experienced astronomers.

Synopsis: Just as our knowledge of the cosmos has changed, so has astronomy technology. So how does the amateur astronomer make informed choices about buying telescopes. In this latest edition of Star Ware, award-winning astronomy writer Philip Harrington helps eliminate the guesswork and guides us through the process with fully updated and expanded chapters on telescopes and accessories.

About the Author: A lifelong amateur astronomer, Phil Harrington was bitten by the "astronomical bug" when he was assigned to watch the total lunar eclipse of April 1968 as a homework assignment. Since then, Phil has spent countless hours touring the universe through telescopes and binoculars. He is a former staff member of New York City's Hayden Planetarium and instructor at the Vanderbilt Planetarium in Centerport, New York. Phil is an adjunct professor at Suffolk County Community College, Selden, New York, where he teaches courses in stellar and planetary astronomy. He is also a contributing editor for Astronomy magazine, where he frequently reviews telescopes, binoculars, and other astronomical equipment, as well as the magazine's monthly "Binocular Universe" column.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: Harrington knows his stuff. He explains it very, very well, and the book is organized in a manner that allowed me to grasp the point of telescopes, binoculars, eyepieces, and mounts. It let me to understand why focal length, power, eye relief, etc... are important. more»

The Dobsonian Telescope   The Dobsonian Telescope
A Practical Manual for Building Large Aperture Telescopes

by David Kriege and Richard Berry
475 pages, 1st Edition, June 1997
Level: All Levels

Highly Recommended

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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 detailed in 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.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: What can i say that hasn't been said? this is a MUST HAVE book for anyone interested in MAKING a telescope, anyone interested in BUYING a telescope, or even anyone interested in astronomy. This has all the valuable information that other books omit. more»

Choosing and Using a Refracting Telescope   Choosing and Using a Refracting Telescope
by Neil English
296 pages, September 2010
Level: Intermmediate to Advanced

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Description: Four centuries ago, a hitherto obscure Italian scientist turned a home-made spyglass towards the heavens. The lenses he used were awful by modern standards, inaccurately figured and filled with the scars of their perilous journey from the furnace to the finishing workshop. Yet, despite these imperfections, they allowed him to see what no one had ever seen before �- a universe far more complex and dynamic than anyone had dared imagine. But they also proved endlessly useful in the humdrum of human affairs. For the first time ever, you could spy on your neighbor from a distance, or monitor the approach of a war-mongering army, thus deciding the fate of nations.

The refractor is without doubt the prince of telescopes. Compared with all other telescopic designs, the unobstructed view of the refractor enables it to capture the sharpest, highest contrast images and the widest usable field. No other telescope design can beat it on equal terms. From a practical point of view, refractors are the most comfortable and least troublesome telescope to observe with. They require little maintenance and cool down rapidly to allow you to observe in minutes rather than hours. Because a refractor has more back focus than almost any other form of telescope, it can accept the widest range of accessories, including filters, cameras, and binoviewers.

Explore in this book what makes refractors such a good choice for amateur astronomers and how to choose the right one for you. Also get some great tips on how to use your new refractor. Get started now, seeing for yourself the dazzling and complex universe first opened to human sight more just 400 years ago.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: If you are a refractor affectionado you will love this book. I have used telescopes for over 45 years and I thought I knew everything about refractors and I was wrong (e.g. defocus tolerance and the affects on seeing). The book has a breezy writing style that is upbeat and fun to read. more»

Choosing and Using a Dobsonian Telescope   Choosing and Using a Dobsonian Telescope
Everything you Need to Know to get Started in Astronomy and Astrophotography

by Allan Hall
198 pages, 1st Edition, May 2017
Level: All Levels

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Description: Dobsonian telescopes are the most popular beginner telescope and first came to prominence in the 1960's. They have provided many thousands of amateur sky-watchers with a low-cost, dependable telescope which allows them to see deep into the night skies. There are numerous types of this popular telescope which are available to buy, and getting the one that best suits your needs is something that could prove to be a challenge. In this new book by Allan Hall, Choosing and Using a Dobsonian Telescope, you will find all the information you will need to make the most informed choice on your purchase.

Whether you are watching the skies from the comfort of your own backyard, or using your telescope at a remote dark site it pays to get the right equipment. Get your copy of Choosing and Using a Dobsonian Telescope to make sure you know all about this wonderful type of telescope, before you buy.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: Very good primer. Excellent information for the new oberservational astronomer. more»

Choosing and Using a New CAT   Choosing and Using a New CAT
Getting the Most from Your Schmidt Cassegrain or Any Catadioptric Telescope

by Rod Mollise
335 pages, December 2008
Level: All Levels

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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.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: This is a no-nonsense book that tells all. Telescope brands by name are compared, giving strengths and weaknesses. Techniques for success are described in detail. more»

Build Your Own Telescope   Build Your Own Telescope
Complete Plans for Five Telescopes You Can Build with Simple Hand Tools

by Richard Berry
240 pages, 3rd Edition, April 2001
Level: All Levels

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Description: Have you ever dreamed of exploring the heavens with a telescope? This book contains specific "nut-and-bolt" instructions on how to build a powerful astronomical telescope inexpensively using ordinary household tools and materials. It includes complete plans, step-by step instructions, and 275 illustrations that show you how to build these 5 telescopes:

  • 4-inch f/10 Reflector -- A sturdy easy to use telescope that is perfect for beginners or as a parent/child project.
  • 6-inch f/8 Dobsonian Reflector -- A light, compact telescope that is simple to build, but powerful enough to satisy a backyard observer for many years.
  • 6-inch f/8 Equatorial Reflector -- A classic design for the amateur astronomer or craftsman who wants an elegant telescope and great performance.
  • 10-inch f/6 Dobsonian Reflector -- A powerful and versatile telescope suitable for casual stargazing or for a serious amateur's long-term observing programs.
  • 6-inch f/15 Refractor -- A large refractor that outperforms commercial telescope of considerably larger aperture.
Note, the book assumes you will buy commercial optics, but there is a section on homemade optics as well.

Amazon.com Customer Comment: This book is a great start on building your own telescope. Later I bought Richard Berry's book ( Build your own telescope) which actually has more detail and beautiful illustrations but cost a lot more. I reccomend both books. more»

Skymaps.com/store -- Recommended Books & Products for Skywatchers
New BooksStar AtlasesPlanispheresGetting StartedObserving GuidesTelescope BooksKids BooksSky Myths
History & ArtistryStar Map PrintsAstroPhotographyTelescopes & BinocularsDVDsSoftwareAstro Calendars


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