Loaner Telescope Program
One benefit of membership in the Houston Astronomical Society is access to the variety of telescopes that are part of the HAS Loaner Scope Program. This program allows members who don't own or have access to a telescope to borrow one for touring the night sky.
The HAS Loaner Scope Program can be particularly beneficial to novices who not only want to become familiar with the night sky, but would also like to learn something about the different amateur telescopes available today. Through the program, you can borrow a number of different types of amateur telescopes and compare them before making that difficult decision about what to purchase for your first telescope.
Typically, the telescopes are borrowed and returned at the HAS monthly meetings.
LOANER TELESCOPE PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS
- Loaner telescopes can be checked out only by HAS members who have been a member for at least 2 months and are in good standing.
- Novices must first complete a training session to learn how to transport, care for, and maintain the club's telescope.
- The loan period is 2 months, however the HAS member in possession of the loaner equipment may continue to use the equipment after the 2 month period until another member wishes to check out the equipment.
- While in the care of a HAS member, the equipment on loan must be stored in clean, sheltered environment with all dust caps, covers, etc. in place.
- Telescopes are delicate precision instruments and must be handled with care. Borrowers should not disassemble any part of the scope or attempt any repairs or cleaning of the optics. If you believe that the scope needs maintenance or cleaning please contact the Telescope Loaner Chairman for instructions.
- No fee is charged to check out equipment however the participating HAS member agrees to replace any missing or damaged equipment.
- HAS members with equipment on loan are required to promptly return the equipment once contacted after the 2 month period has expired within 14 days.
- Borrower agrees to allow the Loaner Telescope Chairman to make a copy of your Texas Driver’s License (or the legal guardian's driver's license) to keep on file while the loaner scope is in your possession. This information will only be used, if necessary, to help us locate you and recover HAS property.
- By checking out any equipment listed on this page, the HAS member agrees to these terms.
Binoculars will require no training to borrow and use (subject to the general requirements of the loaner program).
There will be training sessions held for novices to teach the basics, care and storage of the telescope, how to collimate, how to star hop, and how to use a star chart. These will be held at a separate location and time from the general meeting. Members will be required to complete this training before borrowing a novice level telescope.
The intermediate telescopes will require borrowers to demonstrate the ability to properly and safely use the telescope.
For more information, please email [email protected]. Be sure to put the name of the telescope you wish to borrow in the header.