Last updated: 13 July 2004

The book Using the Meade ETX has been published by Springer in its Practical Astronomy Series. It was written by your humble webmaster, with contributions from Clay Sherrod and Dick Seymour. Cover images by the author (me), Rick Krejci, and Gerald Wechselberger.

The following reader comments have been sent in to me. If you have purchased the book and would like to offer comments, please send them to for posting here. Thanks.

Subject:	Your Book
Sent:	Thursday, July 8, 2004 16:28:57
I did a review of 'Using the Meade ETX' for the Observatory Magazine
which is a subscription only magazine founded at the Royal Observatory
at Greenwich.

I also included it in the newsletter 'Ad Astra' which I edit for my
local astronomical society, the Association of Falkirk Astronomers.
There is a copy of it on the web site (which I also manage) and you can
read it by clicking here!


Malcolm Gibb.

Subject: ETX Book 3rd Edition
Date: 3/14/04, 08:07
From: Jacky Poupot (
I'm Jacky from Strasbourg in France. Ever not still buy the ETX 125 but
I think In 2 or 3 weeks... It will be good !

You will find in the joined file a picture of you Third Edition Book.
And I LIKE it ! It's for you collection on the Web !

Best Greatings from France :)

ETX Book

Subject: your book
Date: 3/13/04, 15:38
i got your etx book, the pics are crappy, why?
Mike here: Some of the pictures were taken a long time ago and the only versions available were low-resulution JPEG files. That, combined with the printing process, resulted in some of the pictures not being of higher quality.

Subject: Your Book
Date: 1/2/04, 16:18
From: david lee hawkins (
Recently got your book, 3rd printing 2003.  THANKS!!!!!  My ETX is my
1st scope ever, so as you can imagine, I hadn't a clue what I was doing.
Heck I didn't even know where Polaris was!!  Your book addressed a lot
of questions I had.  I am still not 100% on setting up the scope,
because my tracking and go-to's are questionable. But learning to do it
correctly sure is fun!!!! Kinda reminds me of learning to ride a bike,
except i haven't fallen off my ETX yet!!! Also Thanks to Doc Sherrod for
his input. This book is a tool that MUST be acquired when you get an
ETX.  Meade owes you big time. Seeya at the ASO star party I hope.

David Hawkins
Mike here: Thanks! I hadn't heard they were in the 3rd printing.

Subject:	Review of your book on my website
Sent:	Wednesday, July 9, 2003 01:46:23
From: (Christoph Ozdoba)
you might be interested to know that I have a short review of your book
(which I strongly recommend to all ETX users) on my "Astro" website.

It's a German site, but as your book (and your website) are the two most
relevant ETX references and most of my readers read English, I thought
they should know about it ;-)

If you are interested:

Kind regards from Switzerland,

Chris Ozdoba


Subject:	I Bought Your Book
Sent:	Thursday, February 13, 2003 19:44:10
From:	"Stephen E. Hutson" (
Hey, Mike!

I wanted to let you know that I bought your book, even though I don't
have an ETX. :-)

I also have a great deal of respect for P. Clay Sherrod. His "A Complete
Manual of Amateur Astronomy" (1970's) became very dog-eared from much
use. I sent him an e-mail last year, and received a nice reply.

'Looks like we're getting a nasty ice storm tonight and tomorrow.
There's a very good chance we'll lose power for a day or two. :-( 
Perhaps we'll get clear skies once the power goes out, and we'll be
without light pollution for the night. :)

Clear Skies,

-- Steve

==   Stephen E. Hutson, American Dream Partnership ==
==                ==

Subject:	#497 & Polaris
Sent:	Friday, October 11, 2002 18:42:49
From: (Steven Miller)
Just got a copy of your book and love it.  It's already a bit dated,
though, since the Meade 60AT has apparently been discontinued and the
ETX-105EC released since it went to press.  Got a new edition in the
Mike here: Yes, publishing cycles can create difficulties staying current. As to an update, we'll see...
Subject:	Your Book
Sent:	Tuesday, September 24, 2002 15:40:32
I just finished your book. Nice job. Just what the doctor ordered. You
should get a public service award. An idea - which you've likely thought
about. Make a deal with Meade to have a copy of it with every
(appropriate) scope they sell. It is my opinion that Meade's manual
writers are not putting themselves in the shoes of new ETX users. The
manual I got was beyond confusing. After your book , and several
frustrating nights before it, I more fully realize how inadequete their
instructions were. I say you drop them a line and make them an offer.
Show 'em this note if you like- or others like it.

Keep up the good work.
Thanks again,
	   George Dreitlein

Subject:	Using The Meade ETX
Sent:	Friday, September 20, 2002 17:31:55
I bought a Meade ETX-90EC as a 50th year birthday present to myself in
2000. I bought the tripod. I went out in the dead of winter (Birthday is
December 21st) and froze. It has been out several times since but I
never got it set up to use the electronics.

I bought your book and just finished the Dedication and Preface. I am
tired but have to go out for a few beers right now so I will not read
more until tomorrow. The book will probably sit next to throne where I
keep most of my reading materials. The current library includes "The
Universe in a Nutshell by Hawking, "Just Six Numbers by Martin Rees,
"the Elegant Universe" by Brian Greene, and "The Autobiography of
Benjamin Franklin" by Franklin. You are, therefore, in distinguished

I hope and trust your book will finally get me on the true course.
Although I am now 52 (almost 53), three of my six children are boys aged
7 to 11 and I hope I can perhaps teach them some of what your brother
taught you.

I'll let you know how it goes, if you don't mind.

James S. Sell

Subject:	etx 105
Sent:	Friday, August 9, 2002 18:56:27
Gee Mike!, Since there is a question of why the new ETX 105 wasn't
included in your ETX book,do you think that a revised edition is on the
way???????? Hmmmmm??(O.k.,O.k.,only kidding!!).                         
Bob D.
Mike here: Who knows. Once the current printing (and any more reprinting) runs its course, anything is possible. But that won't be entirely my decision.
Subject:	BOOK
Sent:	Wednesday, August 7, 2002 14:13:25
Dear Mr Weasner,
Following a review in the Summer edition of the FAS ( Federation of
Astronomical Societies ) news letter by Clive Down, I ordered your book
"Using the Meade ETX". Although I think it is in many ways a gentle yet
fairly comprehensive introduction to the ETX, I am surprised ( and
disappointed ) to find no reference to the ETX105. Surely it would have
been preferable to itemise the full range of ETX models, so that readers
could see the differences between the models - which will be of help
when deciding which model will be most suitable for themselves? Your web
site does have links, and some of these appear to require payment for
their information, which is seen on this side of the pond as an
unpopular act! We are already taking a pounding with prices as it is.
The 105 costs 749 and the 125 costs 1,049, a tripod 199, cases and
autostars 129 each. 1 =$1.5.
Do say!
Best Wishes,
Glyn Owen, Penzance, Cornwall, England
Mike here: The book was written prior to the ETX-105EC being announced. Publishing cycles being what they are there was no way to include it. As to links that require payment, there are NONE like that on my Site. The entire Site is free to all. The expenses are all mine (hence the "Pledge" concept for those who wish to help offset the expenses).
Subject:	regarding your book
Sent:	Sunday, July 7, 2002 19:40:00
I got your book from the Science book club.  I love it.  I'm a first
time user of the Meade telescope so I have a lot to learn.  Your book is
so easy to understand, anticipates my many questions and answers them is
such easy terms.  I love it. Thanks so much for writing it.


Subject:	re Book availability
Sent:	Saturday, June 22, 2002 15:29:17
From: (Dan Durie)
Just ordered your book from Said they ship within 24
hrs.  And only $28.45 including shipping.  I CAN'T WAIT!

Subject:	book
Sent:	Tuesday, June 11, 2002 6:52:57
From: (Tim Murray)
Bought and read your book cover to cover.  Good work.

Subject:	Hello and WOW!
Sent:	Monday, June 3, 2002 21:40:53
From: (Linda Hicks)
Congrats on the success of your book.   That's great!
Ken Hicks

Subject:	ETX Book
Sent:	Saturday, June 1, 2002 15:54:29
From: (Richard H. Arland)
FINALLY! I received my copy of your newest book from Barns & Noble. I
had it on order since mid March. I am definitely impressed. Great job!
Not only does it make sense, I can actually understand it! The book is
very well organized and is a definite asset for anyone who has an ETX.

From one author to another, congratulations on a job well done.

Rich Arland in (cloudy) Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Friday, May 31, 2002 12:50:29
From: (Mike Quinn)
Your site and especially your book have both been a tremendous aid! 
Thank you for writing it.

Mike Quinn

Subject:	YOUR BOOK
Sent:	Friday, May 31, 2002 6:36:19

I ordered your book from Amazon on May 24, 2002.  It was shipped on May
26. I received it on May 30.

Subject:	Re: AstroPhotography and book
Sent:	Thursday, May 23, 2002 22:03:46
From: (Sean Gallagher)
Finally got it... the right equipment makes all the difference in the
world. Now I can take a good shot of the moon! Here she is tonight...  I
am definately improving!

Also I got your book, it's really great, thanks for writing it & I liked
your dedications in the front.

Sean Gallagher
Phoenix, AZ

Subject:	Graet Book!
Sent:	Monday, May 20, 2002 19:42:38
From: (Joseph Powell)
I got your book (Using the Meade ETX) last Thursday, and I thought I
knew my ETX-125 and tripod (deluxe field). I'm only half way thru it and
I learned a lot so far. I was having trouble aligning it, but thanks to
you AGAIN I'm doing better. I recommend it for any ETX user!

Thanks again,
Joseph Powell 
New Jersey USA

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Friday, May 17, 2002 6:54:37
From: (I Nobu)
I bought your ETX book!
That is also wonderful!!

Good Luck!


Subject:	re: AMazon saying "don't bother"
Sent:	Friday, May 10, 2002 23:02:19
From: (Richard Seymour)
There's always   and
(or barnes and noble, or your local telescope store... or any
small bookseller would be happy to order it in...)

i'm stunned...
Mike here: Yes, other bookstores should be able to get it. There is also the Springer link mentioned on the Book page.

Subject:	Amazon says "don't bother"; B&N says we'll take your money
Sent:	Saturday, May 11, 2002 7:00:02
From: (Tom Mehle)

Thanks for the suggestion. I just ordered the book from; they
have it in stock for immediate shipment.

I guess must have too much money, no longer seeing the need
to stock books that are in demand.

Mike here with an update: The publisher contacted and continues to offer the book for sale. Dealers linked from the page may or may not still have it in stock.
Subject:	Using the Meade ETX
Sent:	Friday, May 10, 2002 16:06:06
From: (Tom Mehle)
You may be interested to know that my order for your book on Amazon
"bounced" I'm disappointed ...

> Greetings from
> This notice serves as confirmation that we have initiated a refund in
> the amount of $33.86 for Order 058-6005762-0429206 from
> 1 of "Refund for Using the Meade ETX: 100 Objects You Can Really See With
> the Mighty ETX..."
> ==================================================
> Reason for Refund: Other
> Memo from Seller:
> We are extremely sorry. We ran out of this book. We will remove it from
> which can take 24-36 hours. Please do not reorder.
> ==================================================

Subject:	great book!!
Sent:	Tuesday, May 7, 2002 21:05:11
From: (BOBCATH28)
It took only 4 days to get my copy of Mr.Weasner's book from does make a great guide for anyone who has (or is planning
to buy...) a Meade ETX telescope.I knew ahead of time that the book
would be'small' for its price,but because Mike's  website has been so
invaluable to me,and I'm sure to many others,that I surely had to have
it!!Just think!, a hardcopy version of his illustrious website!!!! I
only wish it had a few more lunar and planetary photos taken with the
ETX scopes.I suppose it is our (the etx owners) fault that we didn't
send in enough photos for Mike to add to the book!!Let's try harder to
make it in next time!!Thanks Mike!,for such a wonderful book.Keep up the
great work!!!!!!!                                   Bob

Subject:	New Patch?
Sent:	Tuesday, May 7, 2002 8:06:55
From: (Rory Calhoun)
First, thanks for your GREAT BOOK!  I bought mine in April -- it reads
just like your web site -- real easy and inforative.  It adds so much
more to the enjoyment of my etx125!  Thanks again.



Subject:	book
Sent:	Monday, May 6, 2002 20:28:08
From: (Carlos Family)
I bought your book.
Great book very helpful much like your site!!!


Subject:	Book
Sent:	Sunday, May 5, 2002 10:52:50
From: (Me)
I got your book.  Awesome stuff.  Lots of good information!

Mike here: The June 2002 issue of Sky and Telescope mentions both the Mighty ETX Site and the book. Thanks S&T!
Subject:	Read your book
Sent:	Thursday, May 2, 2002 12:47:14
From: (Dimitris Rakopoulos)
I have managed to finish your book. I think it is absolutely great. Last
time I wrote to you I had finished a couple of chapters. Well I got the
time to finish it up. It's not only a book. It is a companion. I always
have it with me when I go out to see the stars. Whenever I want to find
something regarding my ETX I check your book - and of course your site.
Great work.

Best regards. Thank you for giving us the greatest resource for the ETX.

Dimitris Rakopoulos

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Thursday, May 2, 2002 3:37:07
From: (Richard Shoesmith)
I received your book from yesterday, a good read!


Subject:	ETX book
Sent:	Monday, April 22, 2002 18:12:22
From: (John Martellaro)
Your book came today.  Pretty damn cool.  (A little light on the CCD
section, though.)

John Martellaro
"What does your choice of computer say about you?"

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Sunday, April 21, 2002 21:02:31
From: (psydoctor)
Great site, and even better book.  I just got mine from Amazon --- it
was back ordered 50 days ago.

Dr. Jim Gregory

Subject:	Re: book
Sent:	Sunday, April 21, 2002 18:32:26
From: (David Tindall)
Could you please pass this message on to Bill Farmakidis in Sydney. I
received my copy of your new book last week. I ordered it online from
Dymocks Books.
The Australian price is $65.95 plus postage.

Great book!


David Tindall
Queensland, Australia.

Subject:	BOOK
Sent:	Thursday, April 18, 2002 15:09:03
From: (Ray Marchionna)
I just finished your book, outstanding! Please keep up the good work,
and pass our thanks on to Dr. Sherrod, and Mr. Seymour. What would we
amateurs do without people like you to explain things in concise terms?

Thanks to you all.

Ray Marchionna

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Tuesday, April 16, 2002 21:06:15
Just wanted to let you know, I ordered your book from Amazon through
your link on 4-7 and received it on 4-11. I read it cover to cover twice
over the weekend. Very well done! You, Dick and Clay did a great job.
The book should be mandatory reading for anyone who has, or plans to get
an ETX. Especially if it's their first scope.


Subject:	book
Sent:	Friday, April 12, 2002 13:43:35
I've read it cover to cover and would thoroughly recommend it to anyone
who is a little in the dark (pardon the pun) as to what these things can
do....I would go as far as to say that, before any eyepiece, autostar or
even tripod is purchased, buy this book as it is a fundamental ETX

Best Wishes, Rob Vanderpere-Brown
Mike here: Glad things have apparently worked out. Before you decide to tackle any enhancements be certain your telescope actually NEEDS an enhancement. For many people, no enhancements are required (telescope or body).
Subject:	Congratulations
Sent:	Friday, April 12, 2002 10:34:45
From: (David Green)
My copy of the book finally arrived this week. I had to write and
congratulate you on a fine effort! Your enthusiasm is so contagious, it
was all I could do not to log onto Astromart and buy an ETX-90 on the
spot. (Though, to be honest, I'm leaning more toward an ETX-125....)

Great work, and good luck with moving lots of copies off the shelves.

Clear skies,


Subject:	book
Sent:	Thursday, April 11, 2002 15:04:19
From: (a.hatwood)
Well done with the book, I got a copy through W.H.Smith in the UK.

Subject:	100 Objects
Sent:	Wednesday, April 10, 2002 4:11:34
Great book !!  It took Amazon 2 months to deliver it, but it's worth the
wait.  Once I read the first page, I didn't put it down until I finished
reading it.  I especially enjoyed the section on photography, caring for
the scope, eyepieces, and autostar, balancing and transparency/seeing. 
I now know why I can't see galaxies when the skies are clear.

Thanks - Leary Wong

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Tuesday, April 9, 2002 1:12:15
From: (Schfer Werner)
Thanks again for your great efforts to help me. Your site is great. Last
week I got your book via amazon in Germany. You see, now your book has
arrived in Europe too. My first impression: good and helpful book, I can
recomend it to every ETX owner.


Werner Schaefer

Subject:	Book cost- curiosity
Sent:	Friday, April 5, 2002 9:04:01
I have a question that is 'burning' to be asked, and please do not take
it wrong!

I just purchased your book on using the ETX from Amazon, and although I
was aware of the cost when I purchased it, I guess for the price I
expected a huge, hardcover volume. (I did not look closely at the
description on Amazon, if it is there)  I was VERY surprised to find a
thin, 200 page, softcover book, when it arrived.

Again do not get me wrong, I have been reading it and it is really good
info, well written, including Clay's stuff. It's just that page for
page, it is probably the most expensive book I have ever purchased, (and
I buy about 20 books a year) at let's see, about 20c per page!!

I have been considering self-publishing a book of my own, a photography
book, but at those costs if they are typical, I would never sell
anything and the cost to me would be prohibitive.

Just curious about this stuff, and I am not sorry I bought it, only as I
said, a bit surprised!

I plan to keep it in a locked case, and pass it down to my grandson (who
by the way, I just bought, his first telescope!) ;-)

Thanks for writing the book. It is a great help!

Take care

Doug Noyce
Mike here: I don't have anything to do with the book pricing; the publisher sets that. However, the price is typical for the Practical Astronomy series for that page count and number of images.
Subject:	Book
Sent:	Thursday, April 4, 2002 7:35:06
From: (Gerald Mullen)
Got the book after a long wait from Amazon on April 2. Really nice job
and worth the wait. The site gets better all the time.
Best Regards
Jerry Mullen

Subject:	The ETX Book
Sent:	Wednesday, April 3, 2002 15:37:43
From: (Don Barbee)
It came today via 'Brown'.  I'm really impressed it's very informative
and well laid out.  I can't wait to use it.  Naturally it started
clouding up right after it got here.

I bought it thru Amazon so they owe you some site $'s, right?  Just FYI.

all the best,


PS- Very touching dedication.  Your brother was obviously a large
influence in your life.

Subject:	Your Book
Sent:	Friday, March 29, 2002 9:33:13
From: (Philippe HAAKE)
What a nice day.......... I receive your book yesterday here in Geneva

Odrered in Amazon germany

Really nice, indeed.... Thanks a lot for your great book

Best Greetings From SWITZERLAND
ICQ 3128404

Subject:	ETX125/EC paranoia 2
Sent:	Tuesday, March 26, 2002 11:01:53
I just got your book from

It arrived at work today so I haven't had a chance to sit down with it
yet, although I must say, having sneeked the odd peek throughout the
day, it looks to me like it's going to be indispensible when I pick up
my ETX125 next week!

I called the dealer yesterday and the 'scopes there waitng for me to get
to NY (I ordered a hard case as well for the journey back to the UK),
i've already bought the autostar - i've ordered a wide angle 18mm
plossel and a 2x barlow from which should arrive at my
friends in a couple of hopefully, by next weekend I should be
a fully paid up member of the ETX club!

Anyway, i'm off to make a start on your book.

I'll let you know how it goes when I pick up the ETX125 and give you a
full report on travelling with it.

Wish me luck!
Regards, Rob

Subject:	Book!
Sent:	Tuesday, March 26, 2002 8:44:38
From: (roy bailey)
Wife bought it for me from a book company advertising in a brochure
within the Astronomy Now magazine.

Some good tips, Thanks !
Roy Bailey.

Subject:	Book
Sent:	Saturday, March 23, 2002 13:49:28
From: (Michael Kaye)
I have just received a copy of your book from Amazon. Not had a
chance to read it but nevertheless it looks like a great read.

Subject:	Thanks!
Sent:	Friday, March 22, 2002 11:00:28
From: (AntonyM)
From:   Brian Mellors, London.   England.
c/o    ( reply taken )

Thanks for publishing your super book, it might have saved me 75 dollars
having my ETX125 serviced, to try and improve pointing.  I bought a
second 497 AutoStar, but both work about the same.

Subject:	Your Mighty ETX book!
Sent:	Sunday, March 10, 2002 15:19:19
From: (Karen Sheard)
Instead of flowers for 'Mother's Day' this year, my children, aided by
their father bought me a copy of your book 'Using the Meade ETX'.

I just wanted to let you know how delighted I am with it. I was having
some pretty despairing times with my ETX-70AT, but I am over that now
with a renewed enthusiasm! Unfortunately it has been raining a lot
(pretty normal for March in the UK), but that gives me more reading time

Many thanks for making the effort to write this book.

Kind Regards

Karen Sheard
Leeds, Yorkshire, UK.

ps> In recognition I have just given you a really nice review at - hopefully they will publish it!

Subject:	ETX 70
Sent:	Friday, March 8, 2002 16:42:01
I'm from Germany and found your HP over

I work at a wholesale-trade for books and already found your book. Its a
pit its in english. English is ok, but astronomy-english?? Ouch ;-) What
about translating in german? I think, it would be saled quite good,
there are many, many ETX-Users in Germany!

Best regard and clear skies

Silke :-)
Ohne Risiko spielend zum Brsenguru werden. Haben Sie schon eine
Strategie? Spekulieren und tolle Preis gewinnen
Mike here: I'll pass your ETX book translation comment onto the publisher.
Subject:	Your book and new equipment
Sent:	Monday, March 4, 2002 13:23:33
From: (Dimitris Rakopoulos)
I have just received your book from I have already read 2
chapters and I think it is great. It is a very useful guide that can
help anyone with an ETX to get started and get to know its potential.
I'll send you my comments as I read on.

Good lucky with your book. 

Best regards,
Dimitris Rakopoulos

Subject:	Book review
Sent:	Friday, February 22, 2002 12:55:22
From: (Nigel Thomas)
New book exellent. Keep up the good work (and support)

Regds Nigel Thomas

Subject:	Using the Mighty ETX
Sent:	Tuesday, February 12, 2002 5:52:56
From: (John Cuckney)
Amazon delivered your new book to me here in UK on Monday 11th Feb -
seems we have beaten the Publisher's date.

As skies are cloudy here I am half-way through it.

Congratulations - very good. I think you should persuade Meade to add
$10 to price of eacg scope and include a copy in each box!

John Cuckney

Subject:	Your book
Sent:	Monday, February 11, 2002 5:06:30
From: (Ken Test)
Just thought I would let you know.

Your book was readily available at the London Astrofest over the
weekend. I persuaded my wife to buy me a copy !

It looks an interesting read.

Keep up the good work.


Ken Bush
Sutton, Surry, UK

Go back to the Using the Meade ETX book page.

Go back to my ETX Home Page.

Copyright ©2002-4, 2008 Michael L. Weasner /
Submittals Copyright © 2002-4 by the Submitter