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AT6RC Carbon Fiber Tubes

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#1 EFT

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 12:40 PM

Not that I will get much response in the vendor forum, but since I can't post the question elsewhere I will ask here if there would be any interest in a carbon fiber tube upgrade for the AT6RC scopes that everyone is starting to finally get.

I would shoot for under $200. Probably in the $175 range for standard grey/black clear-coated CF. Custom colors usually run an additional $70.

They use carbon fiber tubes for all of the other AT-RC scopes for good reason and having an open-ended OTA actually makes CF an even better choice. CF is better to use because it has an extremely low coefficient of expansion. This is critical in astrophotography applications like these scopes are intended to be used for. The metal tube will change length (and because it is not an extruded metal tube it will also change shape) as the air temperature changes. The result is first a shift in focus and second a potential shift in secondary position. Obviously, these are critical issues for any imaging, particularly long exposure imaging.

The beauty of an open-ended OTA with a CF tube is that there is less issue of temperature differential between the interior and exterior of the OTA. One reason some people don't like CF on SCT scopes is because the air inside the scope can take longer to equilibrate with the outside air because the CF does not transmit heat and readily as a metal tube does. The AT6RC is a perfect choice for a CF tube and now that they have gotten so cheap a CF tube can be added and you will probably still spend less than the scope originally cost.

I already make these retrofit tubes for the Celestron C8 and C11 scopes and they are very nice upgrades.

Ed Thomas

#2 Mary B

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 01:34 PM

What kind of a weight difference? I would prefer white to match my AT72ED :lol:

#3 EFT

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 03:01 PM

With the Celestron tubes the CF tubes typically weigh about 40 percent less than the metal tubes. That may be different with these tubes since they are rolled steal rather than extruded or welded aluminum. I won't know the actual weight difference until I make one but I will see if I can calculate the difference.

Ed Thomas

#4 Preston Smith

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 03:47 PM

Not that I will get much response in the vendor forum...

Ed Thomas


Hi Ed!

Well, I'm glad you did! ;)

Sending you a PM.

#5 Gary BEAL

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 09:27 PM

Great idea Ed, and have you furthered the concept of the AT8" C/F tube?
Gary

#6 EFT

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Posted 17 October 2010 - 09:36 PM

That's a good idea Gary. I guess I will try posting that questions here as well.

Ed.

#7 WOBentley

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Posted 19 October 2010 - 11:11 AM

Ed,
I might be interested, although having just ordered recently who knows when my scope will actually get to me!
Dave

#8 NukenGeek

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Posted 19 October 2010 - 10:52 PM

I would also be interested. A CF tube is definitely an improvement.

#9 Mary B

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Posted 09 December 2010 - 08:20 PM

The weight savings would be easier on my CG5 so I am interested.

#10 Thomas Karpf

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Posted 10 December 2010 - 12:26 PM

I might be interested as long as all appropriate holes were in the same places as on the original tube.

#11 jason_milani

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Posted 10 December 2010 - 02:49 PM

I'm interested as well.

#12 astrokwang2

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Posted 20 December 2010 - 11:29 AM

I'd be interested too. $175 is reasonable.

#13 Mary B

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:57 AM

Any updates on this?

#14 jason_milani

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 08:52 PM

Yeah, i've been wondering this myself.

#15 EFT

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:39 PM

Unfortunately, I have not come up with a way to produce these at a reasonable cost. While the tubes would not be too expensive, the tooling for a new size tube runs somewhere around $3000 from my current supplier and that is too much to invest without tons of interest. I am still working on this when I get the chance and hopefully I will find someone sooner or later who can come up with a lesser initial cost. If I do I will let you know.

Ed Thomas.

#16 ohioalfa64

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 08:37 PM

Two years later, I am still interested in a CF tube for a AT6RC. Ed, any new thoughts?

#17 EFT

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 10:47 AM

Possibly, but I will have to get back to you on that.






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