Please read John Kramer's Professional Review of the Apertura AD12 Dobsonian Telescope and be sure to check out his VIDEO REVIEW on Youtube.
An Apertura Dobsonian Reflector Telescope is the very definition of "bang for the buck". For the base price you get a high quality telescope with lots of aperture, great features, and a nice complement of accessories (including a Laser Collimator!) And for those who demand the very BEST in performance, convenience, and professional fit-and-finish, the Tweaker's Dream Package is included with every Apertura AD8, featuring a fully flocked Optical Tube for maximum contrast at the eyepiece, Collimation Screws and Collimation Washers, a Control Knob and an additional 5-hold Eyepiece Tray (see below for full description and photos). Serious astronomy enthusiasts often add these performance tweaks and extra features to their Dobsonian telescopes after purchase in order to make them perform better, move better, and look better. But now your Apertura scope comes with all the best known tweaks already professionally installed so that you can spend your time doing astronomy and learning about the sky, instead of spending hours on researching methods and materials, tracking down vendors, and getting frustrated with trial-and-error prototyping.
Features included in the base package:
Hand-adjustable knobs on primary mirror for easy, no-tools collimation
2 inch, dual-speed Micro 10:1 Crayford style focuser, with 1.25" adapter
Right Angle Correct Image (RACI) 8x50 finderscope
1.25" 9mm Plössl eyepiece (high-power) with 52 degree field of view
2" 30mm SuperView eyepiece (low-power) with 68 degree field of view
35mm Extension Tube (used to provide extra back-focus for eyepieces that need it)
1.25" Moon Filter
Laser Collimator (1 battery included)
Battery operated primary mirror cooling fan (8 AA batteries required - NOT INCLUDED)
Dobsonian base with roller bearings for azimuth and sealed ball bearings for altitude, resulting in super-smooth adjustment in all dimensions
4-slot eyepiece tray
Plastic molded snap-in dust cover
PLUS all Tweaker's Dream components described below
All Apertura Dobsonian Telescopes and the Tweaker's Dream Package components are covered by a 1 years warranty for materials and workmanship.
Tweaker’s DreamTM Package!
The Tweaker's DreamTM is a package of upgrades and enhancements that raises the PERFORMANCE of your Apertura™ Dobsonian Telescope while increasing the scope’s convenience and ease of use, adjustability and appearance.
• Flocking preinstalled to the Optical Tube Assembly
• Upgraded primary collimation springs - NEW!
• Hand-adjustable secondary collimation knobs
• Upgraded Washers for the secondary mirror
• Soft-grip guide knob
• Additional 5-hole accessory tray for base
Flocked interior – Flocking has been used by astronomers in the know for many years to squeeze every last ounce of performance from their scopes, by soaking up any stray light inside the optical tube that might otherwise spoil the view. So we apply high quality flocking to the ENTIRE inside surface of the Optical Tube Assembly from end-to-end, in one solid piece, for an incredibly elegant finish that must be seen to be fully appreciated.
*NEW* Upgraded primary collimation springs – Your scope's performance depends on accurate collimation (alignment) of the primary mirror. The primary collimation screws that adjust the mirror's alignment have compression springs that hold it in place, and as part of the Tweaker's Dream Package upgrade, we replace those stock springs with larger and stronger stainless steel springs that will help keep the mirror collimated more accurately and longer.
Hand-adjustable secondary collimation screw knobs – These adjustment screw knobs eliminate the need for a Phillip’s head screwdriver to collimate the secondary mirror (which means you don’t have to worry about dropping a screwdriver on your beautiful new primary mirror!). These black, fully threaded screws replace the recessed factory screws and extend the grip-point with a 1/2 inch diameter head to allow you to quickly and easily adjust the secondary mirror during collimation. The secondary mirror is suspended on thin metal spider-vanes which can flex under the pressure of a screwdriver, but with these thumbscrew knobs you can use a more precise, lighter touch during alignment, increasing the accuracy of the collimation.
Upgraded Washers for the secondary mirror – Most standard Dobsonian telescopes (including basic Apertura™ telescopes) come standard with a common metal fender washer between the secondary mirror holder and the collimating screws, and with time and use, it can become difficult to accurately adjust the secondary mirror. But a couple of years ago, CloudyNights.com forum member Jason D. came up with an incredibly simple yet elegant solution. He cut a washer out of a Milk Jug (yes, literally from a discarded plastic Milk Jug) and placed the plastic washer between the tips of the collimating screws and the metal fender washer. That simple tweak made it much easier to rotate the secondary mirror, and made the collimation screws work more smoothly (and later it was decided that two “Milk Jug” washers was even better than one). Well, we knew that we couldn’t honestly call our upgrade package the “Tweaker’s DreamTM” unless we included this nifty upgrade. But not wanting to dig through the garbage and cut thousands of washers from old Milk Jugs, we put our thinking caps on. Standard Milk Jugs are made of High Density Polyethylene (also known as HDPE) and we could easily have washers custom-manufactured from HDPE. But while “Milk Jug” washers do the job quite well, our experience in manufacturing told us that there was actually an even BETTER choice – Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (also known as UHMW-PE). UHMW-PE has higher physical strength and abrasion resistance than HDPE, meaning it will last longer. And UHMW-PE has a significantly lower coefficient of friction than HDPE, meaning that it is slicker which helps the secondary mirror holder and collimating screws move against each other more easily. So we took the “Milk Jug washer” idea and made it just a little bit better! Two UHMW washers are pre-installed with each Tweaker’s DreamTM Package. Oh and by the way, our washers are black and don’t smell like sour milk. :-)
Soft-grip guide knob – When you use a basic Dobsonian telescope, you generally move it around during viewing by simply pushing or pulling on the main tube. It works fine, but many experienced astronomers add a nice little knob to their Optical tubes so that they have an easy, comfortable way to guide their telescope around the sky. So we’ve included a very nice “Soft-Grip” handle that is pre-mounted in the perfect spot on your Apertura™ telescope. And the rubberized handle is much more comfortable on those chilly nights when holding the metal telescope itself isn’t your first choice.
Extra 5-hole accessory tray for base – The four-hole accessory tray that comes standard with most Dobsonian telescopes is a nice feature for a beginning astronomer. But the standard tray has only one 2” diameter hole and three 1.25” diameter holes, and most astronomers quickly find themselves running out of places to put their growing collection of eyepieces, adapters, collimators, etc. The Tweaker’s DreamTM Package includes an additional accessory tray that has THREE 2” diameter holes plus two 1.25” holes. So with the standard tray plus the extra tray included with the Tweaker’s DreamTM Package, you will have plenty of room to store your favorite eyepieces, a collimator, plus a handful of other accessories while observing.