First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

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First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

Postby ITDobson » Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:07 pm

My 5 year old son is obsessed with the solar system, specifically Saturn. Last Xmas he asked for a telescope and I told him that he was probably a little small for Father Xmas to get him one. One year later and he still wants one. I have seen a few in the £30 region but i am concerned that it is a false economy and if it is really rubbish it will put him off in the future.
I wonder if anyone could recommend something suitable around £100 (maybe up to £200 if needed). If we can see Saturn with it that would be a bonus. We live close to London so we also have light pollution to deal with too.
Also, if anyone has any experience or recommendations for a reception age child in this field- not much seems aimed at his level.
Thanks
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Re: First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

Postby Graeme1858 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:11 pm

Skywatcher make a kids 3" Reflector Telescope for about £46, the Infinity 76.

Here's an write up on telescopes for kids from Tring Astro, the Infinity is lower down the page.

https://www.tringastro.co.uk/telescopes ... -245-c.asp

Saturn is in Sagittarius at the moment and will be for most of next year so it's not going to be about at Christmas and then not till early summer. Mars will be visible early evening. But a 3" reflector will give good views of the Moon and lots of other stuff that's up there.

Regards

Graeme
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Re: First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

Postby Gfamily2 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:42 pm

I bought the Infinity 76 for one nephew at about your son's age, and he enjoyed it but grew out of it pretty quickly, and it is quite limited, because it doesn't allow you to use 'any' eyepiece.

For another set of nephews we bought a Celestron Travel Scope 70, which comes with a lightweight camera-type tripod, so it'll take a bit more supervision initially, but in a year or so he'll be able to set it up and use it himself.

It also works well as a terrestrial telescope (it has a prism to give an upright view), so can be used for bird watching (albeit with a fairly narrow field of view) or for looking for pirates.
Supplied with its own travel rucksack, it is very transportable, and it can be used with better quality eyepieces, if you want to upgrade with an eye to the future. It has to be said that the tripod is very lightweight and hence wobbly, but it can be replaced (or stood on a table at its lowest setting).

If you are interested yourself, this telescope on Gumtree is very well priced and in the London area.
https://www.gumtree.com/p/telescopes/sk ... 1317613325
Scopes: Meade 8" SCT, Skywatcher 127mm Mak, Raffle winner of SW ST80
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Re: First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

Postby leerousi » Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:31 am

Sweet blog! Great post, I’ll stop by again.

thanks for sharing your thoughts, I haven’t think of this before, keep posting mate!
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Re: First telescope recommendation for a 5 year old

Postby The Man with the Corrugated Iron Roof » Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:04 pm

Saturn is poorly placed for viewing from the northern hemisphere and will be for quite a few years. Mars is getting too far from Earth to give decent views for small telescopes and Jupiter is gone until next summer/autumn and, even then, it won't be well placed. Sorry if that sounds bad news but that's how it is.

The good news is that 5 year olds love the Moon. Even a pair of binoculars can show lunar craters. Telescopes are quite difficult for young children to use and suitable ones will also allow your son to see star clusters, Later on, if he keeps his interest, you can introduce him to a telescope.
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