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#26 AstroTard

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 01:02 PM

I enjoyed the article and appreciate you taking the time to write and post it. I was hoping there would be more about the "RV" scopes and the Dynascope lines. By the way, much has been speculated about the meaning of "RV" and some suggest it was an acronym for "Real Value." Can you shed any light on this?

Thanks!

#27 Dick Jacobson

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 01:04 PM

Fascinating article! My first scope (1950s) was an unbelievably wretched little refractor from Criterion, about 1-1/8" diameter. Later (around 1960) I upgraded to a 4" equatorial Newtonian, a very nice scope which I still have in my closet. After that I dropped out of astronomy for a long time, but more recently got a chance to use someone else's 6" Dynascope. It was in beautiful condition and I was very impressed with the rotating rings for the tube.

#28 Gil V

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 02:14 PM

Sorry, but I have no idea what the "RV" stands for. The RV side was just me building mounts, and whoever was building tubes at the time. Not much more to it than that.

#29 Starsareus

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 06:31 PM

I started going to their Hartford factory in the 50s & was allowed to walk the floor for parts at a good price(for a kid). I have many warm memories. As fortune would have it(NOT usually my situation) I spent Summers in Jersey and biked to Edmunds for Surplus stuff etc. etc. My Uncle Bob was Norm's TV Man & arranged a personal meeting with Mr. Edmund. He was indeed a great man & the OLD Edmunds will forever be missed by us "kids" for sure.

#30 Adam S

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 09:59 PM

Possibly the most enjoyable article I've read at CN- a personal thank you. A dream job for many of us. I got interested in astronomy from books and a great 7th grade science teacher. I became hooked with views of Saturn from my 60mm Sears refractor. It all became real with views from my neighbor's RV6. The views of M13 and M42 one fall night changed everything. The RV6 made the the photos in the books and the words from my notes real. Several months later my parents purchased that RV6 (the neighbor used the funds to purchase an RV8). I observed with it from the age of 12 through college. I recently donated that Criterion to the Albuquerque Astronomers (the astronomy club that tolerated a middle school kid at star parties). The RV6 is part of a short list to have changed amateur astronomy; how lucky you are to have been a part.

#31 steven40

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 10:32 PM

Lots of fun to read Gil.

You've inspired me---I worked after school and on Saturdays at A. Jaegers in Lynbrook, NY while I was in high school in the 6o's. They were most well known for their 6 inch refractor objectives.

I have many great memories of Al Jaeger Sr. and the crew that worked there. He happened to be a wonderful man.

Over a two year period I did a little bit of everything. The day I was put in charge of polishing 2 inch lenses was a disaster I'll never forget! :foreheadslap:

I'd leave school early (I finished classes at 11 AM) and work there until 5. Then I'd go home and grind my own mirrors, and use my RV-6 when it got dark!

I need to sit down and write an article like yours about my time at A. Jaeger Optical---"The Glass House".

Steve

#32 mattyfatz

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 09:11 AM

Great article. I really enjoyed that one. My first telescope experience was with the RV6 too. I have owned several Criterion scopes throughout the years.
Thanks Gil

#33 orion61

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:44 AM

Thank you very much Gill, Your story has helped a lot of people rethink about Criterion I have heard so many comments about them tricking people and not caring etc. without someone telling the truth and the "family" way they ran things, it should change some perspective....Thank You..
I still have my RV6 and a Dynamax 6 both are superb.
And yes I have owned 2 DX8's that were either defraction limited or better.
Thank you again for sharing your thoughts

#34 MawkHawk

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:48 AM

A fascinating story but a tragic ending. I bought an RV-6 in 1977 and used it on and off until about 3 years ago, when I parted it out. A great scope. The best value in scopes at that time.

#35 astrogeezer41

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 02:19 PM

Steve,

Please DO write that article about your experience in "The Glass House".

It would be great reading,
Robert

#36 John Vogt

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:07 PM

Gill,

Great article. What about the Custom Dynascopes? I've seen an 8", 10", 12 1/2" over the years but never a 16". Any idea how many they produced?
BTW, I have a few different brochures, accessory sheet, a CP4 barlow and the sun filter in a red CP4 housing.

John

John

#37 Gil V

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 04:53 PM

In the six years I was there, we did not ship a single newtonian other than RV-6 and RV-8.

Even though I worked there, I've never seen a custom Dynascope "in the flesh".

#38 jeffwt

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 06:22 PM

What a wonderful read, thanks.
You can see some of Criterion's old adverts here:

http://www.philharri...n.net/old60.htm

#39 Mr. Bill

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 07:17 PM

A real "blast from the past".....thanks.

:waytogo:

#40 KeithC

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 12:58 AM

Thanks Gil! I would love to read more!

Thank you for explaining why my B&L 4000 was such a frustrating telescope optically.

#41 gmazza

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 06:28 AM

Very good read, interesting to know the inner workings and how the decision of optical vs fashion changed the output.

#42 Alvin Huey

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 11:47 AM

A real "blast from the past".....thanks.

:waytogo:



Agreed! Very good read.

My parents bought me a RV6 in 1974 after I drooled over the ads over the months leading to the purchase. :)

#43 rockethead26

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 03:46 PM

Great story, thanks.

#44 David Knisely

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 04:08 PM

I enjoyed the article and appreciate you taking the time to write and post it. I was hoping there would be more about the "RV" scopes and the Dynascope lines. By the way, much has been speculated about the meaning of "RV" and some suggest it was an acronym for "Real Value." Can you shed any light on this?


The suggested term for "RV" came, not from Criterion, but from professional telescope engineer Larry Stepp who has worked on various observatory instruments including the WYNN telescope, the two 8.1 meter Gemini telescopes, and now the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) which is under development. He was the one who said that the RV meant 'real value', as the instrument had great performance for a rather modest price. The RV-6 in particular had two classes of primary mirror quality: good and unbelievable. This is one reason RV-6 owners are so fond of their telescopes. They had a good AC clock drive, a halfway decent German Equatorial Mount, and a fully rotatable tube as well, which at the time were good features. I also had 'drooled' over their ads in Sky and Telescope for many years before I just went ahead and built my own 8 inch f/7 Newtonian instead. Still, when I see an RV-6, I do get kind of nostalgic over them. Clear skies to you.

#45 steven40

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 06:13 PM

Will do. My wife will be away for a few days (not that it's a good thing) which will give me the chance to sit down and put together my memories.

While my friends were working at McDonald's, this astro-geek got to work at Jaegers. Very special memories.

Steve

#46 astrogeezer41

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:01 PM

That's great!

I will look forward to it and I'm sure that I'm not the only one!
Best wishes,
Robert

#47 Guido Santacana

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:38 PM

Gil

I enjoyed every minute reading this story. In 1970 I tried to buy a new RV6 using the extended payment plan. It was not to be. Shipping to my place became a major issue and the RV6 had to wait until 1994 when a local amateur called me to give me one that was completely disassembled. It was free so I did not complain, took everything home and reassembled the telescope. The mirrors were sent for aluminizing and in no time I had a fully working RV6 that I still use. Back in those days I bought a B&L 8000. This telescope was only good for low power views. It had atigmatism and no matter how I rotated the corrector or secondary , it did not go away. Eventually I sold it. There was also a 4" B&L SCT. It was not that bad but I traded it for another telescope. The RV6 is a different story. The optics are excellent and I am keeping it.
Thank you for a wonderful story and images.

Guido Santacana

#48 Gil V

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:56 PM

I am quite pleased to read people's stories about Criterion products. That was what I was hoping to achieve with the piece - along with putting to rest some of the crazy stories about the product lines (that cardboard tube thing always bugged me).

It took me quite a while to figure out what I wanted to say - but I wanted it to be about MY experience in the company, and not ABOUT the company. Subtle distinction, but I felt it was important.

Oh, and it was also an attempt to see if a document could be written on an iPod. It can, but I did use Word on a PC for final editing.

I was as much a fan of Criterion products as anyone. I saw the good and the bad in my time there. I could have easily written a piece that named a bunch of names and confirmed some of the problems people had with our products, but what would be the point?

Criterion was what it was. I was just able to be a part of it. Kind of makes me wish I was there in the glory days, when the RV-6 really took off.

I had my time there, though, and from the point of view of an enthusiast, I wanted to let the members here share in that experience.

#49 Dennis_S253

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 09:00 PM

I'd still like to know about the corrector plate. Why would rotating it to a different position change anything?

#50 Gil V

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 05:57 AM

I can't explain the theory behind it, but I can say with absolute certainty that you can take a great scope and teduce it to an awful one with a simple 90 degree turn of the corrector. Not every scope, mind you, but any compound telescope will be affected to some degree by rotating an optical component.

That is one of the reasons I never liked those little Maks that focus by rotating the corrector cell.






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