Tak or Starlight micro-fine focuser for FS series?
Posted 20 November 2012 - 09:24 PM
...or the one by Starlight Instruments...
Also, would there be a noticeable improvement over the stock focuser for visual?
Posted 20 November 2012 - 10:16 PM
Are you having troubles finding perfect focus with the scope? If not, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Posted 20 November 2012 - 10:40 PM
Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:16 PM
I have not tried the Starlight version but it seems people that have tried both tend to prefer the Starlight.
Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:26 PM
Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:27 PM
As far as adjusting them, all I have had were new and needed zero adjustments. Even after extensive use, they were and are still buttery smooth.
I also agree with having at the least some sort of fine focuser whether for visual or astrophotography. Fine adjustments make it a lot easier to summon that last bit of focus needed for crisp images.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 03:13 AM
Both work well but the price difference is small and the Starlight has definitely the edge. The adjustment is pretty simple I did not have any issues during installation.
Short time ago they offered the micro upgrade at a special price directly at Starlight:
Posted 21 November 2012 - 06:37 AM
The FT is not that hard to adjust. I used a small Allen head screwdriver and never had any issues with binding.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:47 AM
If the Starlight is easier to set up, then that might be the best way to go.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:09 AM
Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:20 AM
Posted 21 November 2012 - 09:29 AM
The stock focuser is adequate, "buttery smooth" indeed, as I've been using it for nine years, although I've yet to see the true "snap" as described by many in reading, and perhaps due in part to the average quality of my oculars. I can't help but suspect that such might be just the thing to coax said "snap" out and before my eye, especially with the finer oculars, the orthos and whatever other I decide on in future.
My considering the Takahashi focuser was based on the desire to keep it all "oem", understandably, and if the integration of either proved to be a bust, I could always revert to the original configuration...
The Starlight it is!
Posted 21 November 2012 - 10:59 AM
Posted 21 November 2012 - 11:20 AM
One point you should know is that the Starlight uses your original shaft and pinion in it so all you are getting is a two speed knob and new housing for the shaft.
As to which is better? the Starlight is definitely smoother, but not by much, but adds weight to the scope (heavy housing) and does not allow the use of a robo focus unit on the other end.
The Tak is a simpler install, is the lighter of the two and allows for a robo focus on the other end of the shaft.
For visual only, I would go with either, although the starlight does have a little better feel.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 12:31 PM
Posted 21 November 2012 - 07:01 PM
Now I'm back where I started; not only debating between the stock and the upgrade, but in addition to purchasing either the Takahashi, in the interest of keeping it all oem, or the Starlight.
Posted 21 November 2012 - 08:28 PM
See this article:
Yes it costs more but it has the advantage of having a built in angle adjuster so you don't need the Tak CAA (that saves you about 26mm of in-focus)
which matters on that scope if you use binos.
Note the 3035 costs about as much as a two speed fine focuser and a CAA combined. (this will be my next focuser upgrade for my FS)
Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:03 AM
I have the FeatherTouch Microfocuser on my FS 102.
It needs to be installed such that it is "parallel" with the curve on the bottom of the scope. No sweat.
It does for the most part use the Tak focuser, only provides a "geared down" fine focus.
My FeatherTouch carries a Televue 2" diagonal with a Televue Nagler 17mm 2" eyepiece.....with zero slippage when pointed straight up.
I also felt the need for a fine focus, and would'nt have it any other way!
Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:25 AM
Posted 22 November 2012 - 12:14 PM
At this point, I so want to keep it all oem, but with that exposed bar, it's time to rethink...again.
Posted 22 November 2012 - 02:40 PM
I've also used the Tak 2-speed on other peoples' scopes, I did find it a little more rubbery-feeling, but not anything atrocious. I liked using it and it did the job well. If you want the all-Tak OEM look I think going with the Tak upgrade would be fine.
Let's put it this way - if I bought a used Tak with the Tak 2-speed upgrade I would just use it, no reason to switch it to FT or fool around with it. If I bought a Tak scope without a 2-speed on there and wanted to upgrade it I would buy the Starlight upgrade.
The Starlight pinion does blend pretty well with the Tak aesthetic also - the knobs look very similar except for being gold-colored, which does not clash too badly IMO. Actually I just checked, only the fine-focus knob is gold, the big ones are silver just like Tak.
Posted 23 November 2012 - 01:01 PM
I bought the Starlight for my FS-102 and is says in the directions that the shaft/pinion has to be true. I went and bought it anyway and my shaft/pinion was not true which caused an uneven movement. I took it to one of the local shops to make it straight and they did the best they could but it still did not move smoothly. So eventually I went back to the stock focuser which is fine. I don't know that I would call it "buttery" but it works and the views are great. The shafts on these and Vixens R&P focusers are a soft metal and are easy to knock out of true. In that sense if you have a good one the Starlght can maintain the movement and prevent bending since it encloses and protects.
I think the difficulty some have to adjust the Starlight may be due to this issue because other wise I found it easy to install and adjust.
Posted 02 May 2013 - 05:09 PM
Posted 02 May 2013 - 06:39 PM