After my decision to go for astronomy I started with a big search for a telescope. At first I did not know what selection criteria were important. I surfed the Internet and visited the sites of some Observatories. Most of these have one or more pages about 'how to select your telescope' and after a while I came across a TAL telescope.
This Russian made telescope was reviewed in Sky&Telescope and I liked the price/performance ratio.

I was impressed by the amount and quality of the accessories (big 8x50 finder, eye pieces, motor driven) and I finally ordered my TAL-2M in Germany, because there I located a supplier with the lowest price (including delivery of the heavy equipment at my doorstep !)

TAL-2M Newtonian Telescope
Aperture: 15 cm (6")
Focal length: 1200 mm f/8

Standard accessories:
RA motor drive
Finder: 8x50 (Note: in October 2005 this finder was replaced
TAL Barlow 4x [when proved faulty it was replaced by a TAL 3x Barlow]
TAL 42 mm Kellner eyepiece
TAL 25 mm Plössl eyepiece
TAL 15 mm Kellner eyepiece

November 8, 2005: After 4,5 years of faithful service my trusted TAL-2M scope has been replaced by a Meade LX200 10" f/10 telescope.
November 14, 2005: I am very happy that my TAL-2M found a new master so soon!

Click the image to have a closer look at my 'arsenal' of eye pieces and related goodies.
My 6 inch f/8 telescope fitted with 2x teleconverter and 2x Vixen HQ Barlow operating at f/32.
Example image: the Clavius image of March 3, 2004.

Useful TAL links:
TAL Manufacturing Novosibirsk
Teleskop Service - München (where I bought my telescope)
German TAL Users Association
Yahoo TAL Group