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40mm Meade Series 4000 Super Plossl

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Date: 7-24-2001
Price: ???
Design: Multi-coated Plossl eyepiece
Description: Meade's premium Plossl design.

Review

Hi all, this is my first review.

My first scope was a Meade DS114. Worked great for me for 2 years. Then I went to a star party and got the fever. May 14th I bought a Meade LX200 10" F/10 that came with a great deal of $600 in eyepieces. 6.4, 9.7, 12.4, 15, 20, 26, 32, and 40mm. I have to say this was a great deal and I am very happy. However I will replace/add to some of the eyepieces with better quality/wide angle eyepieces e.g. the 6.7 with a Nagler 7, and the 12.4 with a Nagler 12, as a start. 

I live in Huntington Beach, Ca and the seeing is very so - so on a good night. However, I can split the double doubles no problem even with my 6.7 eyepiece on a fair night. I can see M57 easily, and galaxies look like blurry discs.... I could not even see galaxies in by 114 scope! Also, I have taken my scope to elevation with dark skies so I know what to expect.

Anyway, I thought I would tell you about the Meade 40mm that is part of the deal. This is the only eyepiece of the set that I think has a problem for SCTs. I am not trying to be negative but I wanted to let others know about this eyepiece before they purchase it for their SCT.

I am by no means an expert in understanding the technical jargon of eyepieces so excuse me if I don't explain this right. Feel free to correct my use of terms if I don't get things right.

This eyepiece in your hand looks real good. Very large aperture with a 44 degree apparent field of view. I just could not wait to use it on the moon and planets. If Orion was up I thought it would be good for it as well.... However, using this eyepiece was a different story. The eye relief became a problem BIG TIME. You just cannot put your eye on the cup without seeing the central obstruction of my SCT. You have to back off this eyepiece by about a 1/4 of an inch to even be able to use it! At first I thought something was wrong with the eyepiece but 
other 10" owners have expressed the same issue.Backing off of the eyepiece was very uncomfortable and then other problems arose. If you moved your head around even the slightest bit the edges start to get blockage. In my opinion this eye piece should not even be considered for my type of telescope. The 32mm does not have this problem and is a pleasure to use.

If the eyepiece had an extender like some of the Televue's I have looked through this would help. It needs an extender to move your eye the 1/4" away but allow you to use the cup to keep your head from moving around (let alone the other reasons for a cup).

I don't doubt that this eyepiece would be great on a scope with a smaller central obstruction but for a Meade 8" or 10" SCT, it is just not even worth considering.

Some might think this is an unfair review as this eyepiece should not be used with my scope. Bottom line is Meade should not supply it with my scope, or should retrofit it with an extender for use across other scopes. I did use a 40mm Nagler Plossl which "seems" to have a built in extender and I did not have a problem. In fact Nagler's 55mm eyepiece was also fine.... 

Next time I get a chance I will try this eyepiece in a Dob and see how it fairs.... In the mean time I plan to sell this eyepiece and move to a Nagler or some other 40mm that works on my SCT.

Submitted by Bob - bingobop@socal.rr.com - Huntington Beach, CA

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