AWB Onesky Reflector Telescope Review

If you are a beginner looking to purchase an inexpensive yet great quality telescope, then look no further. The Astronomers Without Borders Onesky Reflector Telescope may be the best option for you.

This is a fantastic telescope that has some great features and comes with a significantly low price tag. In this article, we have reviewed this reflector telescope in more detail so you do not have to.

We have focused on specifications such as the design, aperture, and mount to give you an overview of the product. We have also included some background information on Astronomers Without Borders, and a full list of this telescope’s pros and cons. 

Astronomers Without Borders Company Background

Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) is a non-profit organization that was founded by Mike Simmons. It is a fairly new organization that was established on 15th May 2009. 

They aim to encourage as many people to use a telescope and educate themselves on our solar system. Their motto is “one people, one sky” and they aim to bring everyone together through sharing knowledge of astronomy. 

They take part in many projects and help to sponsor and fund astronomy events. Rather than being a company, they are an organization that has a tax free status. 

They strive to promote astronomy across the globe and focus specifically on the community, and empowerment, through the programs that they run. While they do have staff members, they have many volunteers that help to run and organize events that they carry out. 


Pros:

  • Very reasonably priced
  • 100% of the proceeds go towards the education of astronomy and there is no profit
  • Comes with two different lenses 25mm and 10mm
  • A compact telescope that is easy to transport and carry
  • Altitude-azimuth mount
  • 650mm focal length
  • Created by Celestron
  • 1.25-inch helical focuser
  • Easy to use and comes with a detailed user and instruction manual
  • Vixen-style dovetail rail

Cons:

  • No warranty mentioned
  • Only ships to the US

AWB Onesky Reflector Telescope Buying Guide

We have split our review of the Astronomers Without Borders Reflector Telescope into different specification sections.

Cost

The reflector telescope is fairly inexpensive in comparison to similar products on the market. This would be a fantastic telescope to purchase as a beginner or as a gift for someone. 

What is great about the Astronomers Without Borders telescope is that the products are sold on their website are non-profit. Organizations are the ones that provide these telescopes to AWB. 

All of the proceeds that are made through the sale of this telescope are put back into the organization to help improve the education of astronomy across the world. 

While you are purchasing a fairly inexpensive and good quality telescope, you are also helping to improve the education of others too. 

Design

Overall, the OneSky Reflector telescope is fairly simple in its design. It is black and blue. It is created by Celestron, which is one of the most popular telescope companies in the US.

Celestron manufactures these telescopes specifically for AWB. As Celestron is a popular and trustworthy company, you know that the telescope you receive will be of a high standard.

Being a reflector telescope, it works by using either one or two mirrors. These mirrors are curved and reflect the light into the eyepiece to form the image that you see. These are a very popular style of the telescope and tend to be the most inexpensive, making them great for beginners. 

This telescope weighs a total of 14 pounds. In comparison to other similar telescopes, this is fairly average. As it is fairly lightweight it is easy to store and transport. When it is in use, it is 24 inches in length. 

Specifications

The mirror that the OneSky Reflector telescope uses is a 130mm paraboloidal F/5 mirror. When looking at the eyepieces, they both use a 1.25-inch helical focuser. It also features a red dot sight, which will help you to focus on specific celestial objects.

There are two different eyepieces included, a 10mm and 25mm. They are easy to switch out and will provide a different overall viewing experience. While the eyepieces will remain securely attached to the telescope, in some instances, they can move and wobble slightly, which is worth taking into consideration.

The 25mm eyepiece has a magnification of 26x which is great, and the 10mm has a magnification of 65x. While this is not the strongest telescope available, it is great for beginners and its price range. 

You will still be able to see many stars and celestial objects such as the moon. You will also be able to see the rings of Saturn in certain instances too, which is fairly impressive given how little this telescope costs. The view using this telescope is crisp and surprisingly clear. Its focal length is 650mm.

The OneSky telescope comes with a collimation tool to help line up your telescope for you to see stars and objects more clearly. It also uses a helical focuser instead of a standard rack and pinion that many other reflector telescopes have. This is particularly good and it allows you to focus on objects in a clearer and better way.

Mount

The telescope comes with an altitude-azimuth mount, which is common for reflector telescopes. The mount is very secure and when in place the telescope does not move. It is a single-arm mount, however, it is very durable and strong. It holds the weight of the telescope with no issues. 

This mount is a tabletop mount and you can use it on any useful surface. However, it can also be connected to a tripod easily. It is worth noting that this telescope does not come with a tripod. While it is compatible with many, a tripod will need to be purchased separately at an additional cost. 

The mount uses a vixen style dovetail rail, which is particularly impressive. It allows you to move the telescope with ease. It also balances the telescope well to help prevent shaking when it is being used. 

It has a locking screw and a tension control knob. This helps to keep it securely in place when you are focusing on a part of the sky. This telescope can be mounted on any suitable tripod with ease. 

Ease Of Use

Overall this is an easy telescope to use. The instruction manual is particularly detailed and easy to follow. It covers everything from how to set up the telescope, how to use the telescope, and what each component is for. 

When setting up and taking down the telescope, the OneSky’s Vixen-style dovetail plate enables the user to fold the telescope down for easier transport. It can collapse in on itself to decrease in length for storage and transport.

In addition to this, the optical tube can be detached from the rest of the telescope to make the OneSky more compact. This is great if you are looking to travel with your telescope. 

If you are looking to take photographs of the picture you can see through the telescope, this is possible with the OneSky. While the images may appear fairly overexposed and will not be clear, you will still be able to make out the objects you are taking the photos of. 

Overall, this is a fairly easy telescope to set up and use. While it may not be the most powerful telescope available, you can still see the moon and other celestial objects fairly clearly and the magnification is great. 

Shipping

As this telescope is part of the AWB fundraising scheme, it is only available to ship and purchase within the United States.

Warranty

Unfortunately, it does not state on the Astronomers Without Borders website whether or not this telescope comes with any warranty.

Summary And Where To Purchase

Overall, we think that this telescope is certainly worth purchasing. It is a particularly good price, especially when you take into consideration its specifications. In comparison to similar telescopes on the market, this is the best option.

In addition to this, all of the profits go towards helping to fund schemes that educate others on astronomy, which is fantastic. 

This is a well-made telescope which is created by Celestron, a popular brand in the US. While this is only currently available to purchase in the US, we would highly recommend it.

It is of great quality, and the two different eyepieces included allow you to see celestial objects in much detail. You can use a camera to capture the images that you see too.

As it is easy to use and transport, it is certainly worth considering. If you would like to purchase this telescope, you can do so via the Astronomers Without Borders website here:

AWB OneSky Reflector Telescope

The website also goes into more detail about this non-profit organization, the work they do, and the values that they stand for. 

Gordon Watts
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