The groove around the barrel is where the knurled rubber grip ring will go. Weight is about 7.5 lbs for the eyepiece. Retail price is pretty firm at $1199 for the eyepiece, as ES production schedules have been set for 2013, with glass quantities and pricing locked in for the year. Eight elements, all multicoated. Argon purged. Roll-down rubber eyecup. Design has been finalized and approved. Deliveries are expected to start in May or June.
The production diagonal will have a deeper eyepiece holder than the one on the prototype and will be threaded for 2" filters. Dielectric coatings. Probably part carbon fiber, as seen in the prototype, to hold the weight down. Pricing to be determined when the design is finalized, but expected to be in the $499 range.
We will have an eyepiece part number up shortly for preorders. The 30mm will be the first in a series of 4 or 5 3" 100 degree eyepieces. ES is contemplating a 40mm as the next in the series and would like CN feedback on what other focal lengths might be desirable. You can post your focal length suggestions on this thread. Scott will monitor the thread regularly to see what focal lengths are the most popular.