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new reducer/flattener from Astronomics...

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#1 CounterWeight

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 10:59 AM

In my emails yesterday got the usual Astronomics flyer - Astronomics 0.8x reducer/flattener - anyone else looking the new reducer/flattenr they have? I't very reasonable price and I'll be picking one up to compare with my TV TRF. My plan is to try it out on my ED80T-CF. Anyone else out there looking at it? In the image it appears there is no undercut or cutout safety groove (I really dislike those things!) to cause issues in the focuser collet - I'm currently dealing with that issue on my TV-TRF-2008. That alone makes me want it!

[Edit] free shipping and on it's way ;) !

#2 terry59

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 02:17 PM

I'm looking forward to see what you think. I didn't know about the TRF-2008 safety groove. I guess I'll try the Orion version

#3 Phil Hosey

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 03:35 PM

I just got the email today and went to look at it.. wish I had seen it before I dropped $300 on the William Optics Flattener IV. The AT reducer/flattener claims to be able to flatten the image even for large format DSLR so in theory it should work well for my APS size camera. I will say that the William Optics Flattener IV does a fine job with my f/7 refractor, bringing it to f/5.8 and a dead-flat field across my APS sensor, but if the AT reducer is as good, I could pick one up, sell the William Optics and still make a few bucks.

#4 WarrenS

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 03:53 PM

Got the email as well. I asked Mike (Astronomics) about it a couple of NEAFs ago and was told it was in the works. Glad to see it arrive, though I'll wait and let others be the guinea pigs.

#5 SMigol

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 12:24 AM

Very nice, I've been waiting for a reducer/flattener in this range. Price point is worth the shot.

#6 zerro1

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 01:07 AM

In my emails yesterday got the usual Astronomics flyer - Astronomics 0.8x reducer/flattener - anyone else looking the new reducer/flattenr they have? I't very reasonable price and I'll be picking one up to compare with my TV TRF. My plan is to try it out on my ED80T-CF. Anyone else out there looking at it? In the image it appears there is no undercut or cutout safety groove (I really dislike those things!) to cause issues in the focuser collet - I'm currently dealing with that issue on my TV-TRF-2008. That alone makes me want it!

[Edit] free shipping and on it's way ;) !


I hate to burst your bubble... but, it does have a safety grove according to :

The 2" telescope-side barrel is threaded for standard 2" filters and has a beveled safety groove.



#7 CounterWeight

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 11:58 AM

Thanks for pointing that out Warren :) ! I hope the beveled variant will not cause the same issue as the stepped/cutout type. My TRF-2008 wants to seat a few mm's off from being flush/flat to the focuser collet. My temp fix has been milk carton washers to make up the difference plus maybe a mm or so - not ideal but appears to work. I'll know quickly if the bevel type makes it a non-issue, hope it does. The other thing I hope it will do is give a true 0.8 reduction. My TRF-2008 backdistance is well off the presrcibed and I've been ballparking that I'm in the very low f/5 but not into the f/4.x range. I'll use the heart or soul nebula for a test / compare as I've got great data on both...

that is when the weather clears again.

#8 CounterWeight

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 06:12 PM

Well it is here. Nicely crafted!... like the beveled safety vs. the hard edged cutout type. Now just waiting for some clear weather and I'll post my results.

#9 nemo129

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 07:43 PM

Hi Jim,
Thanks for checking this out for us! I already have the TRF2008, and it seems to work well in my Moonlite focuser as far as seating, but this seems like an inexpensive alternative by comparison. I will be looking forward to your observations.

Thanks again!

#10 CounterWeight

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 04:56 PM

Well, all I have so far are some images comparing the TV TRF-2008, AT Field Flattener, and AT reducer flattener in a side by side. Thought I'd put them up for 'FYI' as far as size comparison.

Attached Files



#11 CounterWeight

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 04:58 PM

and here a more straight on image...

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#12 lacomj

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 01:08 PM

Are you planning to use it with the ST-83000 with FW8? What size spacer are you going with (assuming one is needed)?

I am considering this reducer quite seriously too. Anxious to see some user experiences!

#13 nemo129

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 01:47 PM

According to the Astronomics product page you need 55mm of back space for their new .8x reducer/flattener. The ST8300 gives you 17.5mm and the FW8 gives 20mm (per SBIG) so the math says you will need a 17.5mm spacer or combination of spacers to get an extra 17.5mm to make it 55mm from from the shoulder of the reducer to the image plane. Best to measure though as sometimes the spacers and component's threads do not mate perfectly and can add a mm or two.

#14 SMigol

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 01:51 PM

I got mine in the mail today. Very sparse packaging. Would have been nice to have a spec sheet with it for records.

Will have to wait for a muddy back yard to dry out before setting up scope to check proper spacing and flatness. As things are now, the tripod legs will sink deeply and the observer's feet will, too.

#15 nemo129

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 01:58 PM

It will be interesting to see if it will be effective on the AT RC scopes as well. I have used the AT2FF with my AT8RC effectively, so maybe??? :question:

#16 CounterWeight

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 01:43 PM

unending rain / clouds here ...

Jeff- yes spacers needed, I have a lot of them so was able to cobble the following - I used a TS 10mm spacer and a Baader 7.5mm spacer to get me where I think the spacing should be... this for the FW8-ST combo. Fits up nicely flush against the focuser collet (this on my ED80T-CF) which is big plus for me.

waiting for this to stop... it's the 'cut and paste' time of year...

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#17 NeilMac

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 06:22 PM

LOL, ive been waiting a week for the snow to stop :)

#18 CounterWeight

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Posted 27 October 2012 - 08:22 PM

MedHat... is that where Garry Lee and Showdown are from?! What did you buy to deserve a snow blanket? or is it just 'that time of year'... in my case I think it's just that time... it's cloudy even during the daytime.

#19 cometcatcher

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 12:39 AM

Rats, astronomics only ship to US. Anyone sell these that will ship to Australia?

#20 oldstargazer

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 10:03 AM

astro tech dealers This is a link from astro tech for all their dealers.

#21 Aboy

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 05:11 PM

I have a question about this reducer..

I waiting for my TV pronto in the mail.. this reducer its ok to use in the TV pronto?

#22 WhitenerJ

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 06:28 PM

What is the difference between the new reducer and the Astro Tech 2 field flattener?

#23 oldstargazer

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 07:04 PM

The new one reduces the fl by about 2 tenths. Not very much but might make the difference between getting the whole target on the chip or not.

#24 Aboy

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 08:24 PM

Ok I'll wait for my answer... But also: it's better the TV reducer that this one? Because the TV its more expensive, I know that's doesn't mean it's better.

#25 CounterWeight

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Posted 28 October 2012 - 10:27 PM

If I can use it at the spec backdistance - it reduces by 0.8x so it should take it down a from f/6 to f/4.8 - pretty good for a scope that already pretty wide. But it's in ways not so simple when mating to other brands, case of my TRF-2008 is that to keep the field flat and in focus on my ED80T-CF I have to use a working back distance well off the 'spec' distance, so I'm not getting the full reduction, maybe nearer to f/5.x. A similar scenario on my TEC 160mmm scope using the A-P telecompressor, you sometimes need to play with spacing and tradeoffs.

So it's a bit experimental, I don't assume different branded optics will match up - helps to have a lot of spacer tubes to play with backdistance. An added caution is focuser travel, the only reason the A-P optic works in my TEC is because it fits inside the focuser - otherwise I wouldn't be able to get the reducer optic close enough to the objective to get it to work properly.

So it's in ways not simple matching up sometimes, the theory might be good but the actual focuser length/location and travel... physical mechanical 'might' cause issues.

My AT flattener I've used on all my refractors to ensure flat field on the imaging chip - and it has been good on my Onyx 80 f/6.25, Orion at f/6, and TEC at F/8. Maybe a simpler job as it's not bending the light cone for focal reduction.

Some brands have reducer/flattener specifically for their scopes, this is a plus as you get matched results without worry.






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