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All's well that ends well (SV80S)...

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#1 jrbarnett

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 01:46 AM

A few months ago I posted about my tribulations involving a used SV80S that I purchased off of the "other site". Though advertised as "mint" it wasn't. It had a droopy dew shade, badly UV damaged anodizing on one of the focuser knobs, and badly faded dew shade (looks like UV broke down the clearcoat).

In addition to the fading and dew shade issue, the scope was poorly packed in a thin single layer box with a strip of air pillow and a little bubble wrap. The shoddy packaging caused the post on the clamshell to dent the tube body and the dew shade due to shifting in shipment. One of the set screws, too, was bent in transit.

The dew shade was fixed (by me) with guidance from other CNers, using fuzzy adhesive velcro to strips. Starlight instruments graciously replaced the faded focuser knob and bent set screw, gratis. The fading and dents are what they are. But I've now had a couple of extended sessions with the scope.

The LOMO optics are splendid. Neck and neck with my TEC for the best optics I've ever owned title. I used to think that my FS-78 punched above its aperture. This LOMO absolutely obliterated my C5 tonight on every target, despite a big aperture disadvantage. Jupiter, the moon, unequal magnitude doubles, you name it. Sirius B was easy-peasy.

The contrast and stray light control of the scope are second to none. Simply outstanding. Would I like the optic and focuser mounted to a clean, straight, well-painted tube? Sure, but warts and all the scope performs exceedingly well. I suppose the silver lining is that I've no excuse not to use it like I stole it.

Regards,

Jim

#2 nicknacknock

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 02:14 AM

Way to go Jim! I kept reading the thread on the SV80S adventures / misadventures you were going through. It's amazing what good optics show!

Last Tuesday I took my new-to-me SVR90 to test. Next to me was my SV102ED which I sold to a friend. Even though the SV102ED was a fantastic instrument as verified by other fellow amateur astronomers (who understand more than I do on the subject), the SVR90 just went deeper, offered more contrast and gave me tighter stars.

So, I can relate to how better optics feel, but I am still envious of your Lomo optics!!!!

CS,

Nicos

#3 mmalik

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 04:53 AM

Happy for you; good luck with your steal!

#4 Scott Beith

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 04:36 PM

Excellent news! :)

#5 KerryR

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 04:40 PM

Sirius B at 80mm? I didn't know that was possible. I'll have to try that with my Megrez90, should I ever see a clear, calm sky again here in SW Michigan.

#6 bilgebay

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 05:05 PM

Very good news Jim. Enjoy!

#7 old_frankland

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 05:18 PM

I have to agree that the SV80S with LOMO optics is quite excellent despite the droopy dew shield on mine -- as a deep sky astrograph, even for lunar and planetary.

http://www.lafterhal...daymoon_101.jpg

#8 Scott in NC

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 07:59 PM

Great to hear, Jim! :cool:

#9 ngc2289

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 10:21 PM

I own a long focal length version of your scope, a SV80DL. One night with a 40mm ortho. I put a 3/4 full moon on one side of the field of view, and could see stars on the side away from the moon. The moon had no glare around it, and the sky was an inky black almost to the edge of the moon. These LOMO lenses are outstanding!!!!!! :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :waytogo: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha: :ubetcha:

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#10 jrbarnett

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 11:22 AM

Not only possible, but with the current massive separation, any well-baffled unobstructed scope under moderately good seeing condition should have no trouble with it at modest (100x or less magnifications). It's all about glare control, not resolution, with the huge current split.

Good luck!

- Jim

#11 jrbarnett

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 11:27 AM

I noticed exactly the same thing, Mike. I could put the Moon on one side and see plenty of Taurus field stars scattered throughout the FOV. Absolutely superb stray light control. The optics are delightfully smooth, too. Not even the slightest hairiness on either side of focus on the definition of the fresnel rings.

- Jim

#12 KerryR

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 08:39 PM

Not only possible, but with the current massive separation, any well-baffled unobstructed scope under moderately good seeing condition should have no trouble with it at modest (100x or less magnifications). It's all about glare control, not resolution, with the huge current split.

Good luck!

- Jim


Good to know. I'll definitely be checking it out. I have a thing for white dwarf stars (Sirius B's a white dwarf, right?). Odd, I know.

Problem is, I don't often get stable, let alone clear, skies in the winter...

#13 jimandlaura26

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 12:15 AM

I agree, the SV-80S LOMO is an amazing scope that gets even more amazing under darker skies. In combination with good EP's it can give many larger aperture and different scope types real competition for image quality, even at it's smaller light grasp; and the field of views, especially with Ethos and Explore Scientific 100 degree FOV can be draw dropping. Some of the best views I've ever had of the Andromeda Galaxy, M-42, Double Cluster with Stock 2 in the field of view, the Moon, Jupiter and its Moons, and a legion of Doubles/Multiple stars & Carbon stars have been with this scope.

Good hunting Jim...

#14 Jobryant

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 10:23 AM

Great to hear your happy with it Jim!

Dang you guys are making me want a Lomo 80 now instead of the TMB 92L. I've been going back and forth between these two scopes for years. Looks like I might have just change my mind once again in favor of the Lomo. I know aperture rules but I'd be using the scope primarily during the day and I don't think aperture is as important as pure optical quality for daytime viewing. The more I read about these Lomo 80s the more I want one.

#15 jrbarnett

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 10:41 AM

Stellarvue may have a few brand new SV80S units with LOMO optics left. In retrospect, I should have gone that route rather than cheaping out and looking for a "mint" used scope. Live and learn...

On the other hand, now that my lady has some mileage on her and a few dings and nicks (don't we all :grin: ) I feel that I can use her with impunity and the few hundred dollars I overpaid based on her sad state when she arrived will become naught but a distant memory.

It is an utterly marvelous scope. When my DSV-1 mount gets here in a week or two, I'll compare the LOMO to my FS-78 a bit more, matching magnification, exit pupil, etc., to see if my impression holds up after extended use of the two.

I'll also get some pictures happening. One thing is for certain. The SV80S has my C5 hanging it's head in shame and looking for a new home. :lol:

Regards,

Jim

#16 David E

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 04:22 PM

Stellarvue may have a few brand new SV80S units with LOMO optics left. In retrospect, I should have gone that route rather than cheaping out and looking for a "mint" used scope. Live and learn...

On the other hand, now that my lady has some mileage on her and a few dings and nicks (don't we all :grin: ) I feel that I can use her with impunity and the few hundred dollars I overpaid based on her sad state when she arrived will become naught but a distant memory.

It is an utterly marvelous scope. When my DSV-1 mount gets here in a week or two, I'll compare the LOMO to my FS-78 a bit more, matching magnification, exit pupil, etc., to see if my impression holds up after extended use of the two.

I'll also get some pictures happening. One thing is for certain. The SV80S has my C5 hanging it's head in shame and looking for a new home. :lol:

Regards,

Jim


I have two Stellarvue refractors with LOMO optics, SV102ABV and SV85S. They are both doublets and outstanding performers. My 85S is currently at Stellarvue for a focuser retrofit.

#17 jrbarnett

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 05:32 PM

David, are you going with one of the new 2.5" R&P units?

Regards,

Jim

#18 m9x18

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 06:26 PM

Very good Jim. I'm glad you're happy with your scope's performance. The SV80S is truly a sweet scope. It has nice wide fields of view, great contrast and the ability to take magnification with aplomb. You did very well adding this scope to your inventory. I look forward to more reports and some pictures when you have a chance.

#19 David E

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 07:40 PM

David, are you going with one of the new 2.5" R&P units?

Regards,

Jim


Yes, I sent my SV85S in for the new 2.5" R&P. There's a bit of an issue in retrofitting the 85S: the LOMO lens cell is not collimatable. Vic got around this with the original JMI focusers which themselves have collimation screws. So he could tweak the collimation as long as it wasn't too far off (which with LOMO it usually wasn't). In my particular case, my 85S got a damaged optical tube and dew shield when the scope took a nosedive to the concrete some years back, so Vic offered to make a whole new optical tube and shield. Of course I didn't turn THAT down! :ubetcha:

#20 jrbarnett

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 09:31 PM

That's awesome.

You have me thinking that I may want to commission someone to redo my OTA (basically recycle the focuser and lens cell, and put them into a new, pearly white, tube and dew shade combo.

Alternately, I may strip this one, repair the dents, and have it repainted to my own specs. Might be a nice project, and would result in a truly unique scope.

I've always wanted an MG Iris Blue or Primrose Yellow OTA. :thinking:

Regards,

Jim

#21 David E

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Posted 23 February 2013 - 06:30 AM

I've always wanted an MG Iris Blue or Primrose Yellow OTA. :thinking:

Regards,

Jim


:lol:

It's possible Vic might have an extra ota for that lens cell lying around, I'd email him. Knocking out dents in the tube might not be as easy as it sounds. I purchased a classic Spectrum 1 4" Cat off EBay that has a built-in reflex finder scope. When it arrived I noticed that somewhere along the line someone had dropped it on that finder, and it dented the ota, knocking the finder off alignment and making it useless. My father-in-law and I disassembled the scope and knocked the dent back straight, but like the old lumpy mattress I ended up with some kinks elsewhere in the tube. The paint's not harmed, and it still looks good without close scrutiny, and the finder is now closely aligned so I'm happy with it now.

#22 ngc2289

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 04:35 PM

Right now Vic is going to use the remaining LOMO 80S lenses he has in stock to make a "Limited Run" of scopes. The new scopes are to be in Midnight Stardust Blue color, and have a 2.5" Starlight focuser.

#23 jrbarnett

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 06:51 PM

I saw that. Stellarvue has a dozen optical groups left, and will make a scope for you (45-day delivery) in any of three colors: midnight stardust blue, standard stardust blue or white. The scope comes in a really beautiful Wood Wonders case (a maker of high end field cases and observing chairs).

Price is $2495 for the LOMO OG, Stellarvue painted to order tube, Starlight 2.5" R&P focuser and custom wooden case. I've now used two different LOMO 80/480s, both in first generation Stellarvue OTAs, and both had incredibly nice optics.

The only problem I see with this new offering is the competition. Stellarvue markets its own SV80ST as being "indistinguishable" from the LOMO optics and sells that scope for just over $1000. Also, used LOMO 80/480s in Stellarvue, William Optics, Apogee, APM and other trims can be had for as little as $1000, and top out at about $1400 for an "as new" example. None of these feature the Feathertouch 2.5" R&P, though some builds do offer the 2" Feathertouch Crayford. Still a dozen units isn't a lot to sell, and the prospect of picking the color, getting a beautiful brass and wood hard case, and getting one of the last new 80/480 LOMO OGs that will ever be produced is pretty tempting.

Regards,

Jim

#24 stratocaster

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 07:51 PM

Price is $2495 for the LOMO OG, Stellarvue painted to order tube, Starlight 2.5" R&P focuser and custom wooden case. I've now used two different LOMO 80/480s, both in first generation Stellarvue OTAs, and both had incredibly nice optics.

...and the prospect of picking the color, getting a beautiful brass and wood hard case, and getting one of the last new 80/480 LOMO OGs that will ever be produced is pretty tempting.


Indeed. Based on everything I've read about the 80mm LOMOs it is incredibly tempting - a personal scope for the ages. But I want to stay married...too rich for my blood.

Any takers out there? I can only experience this scope vicariously through you. :)

#25 Scott in NC

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Posted 25 February 2013 - 08:51 PM

Any takers out there? I can only experience this scope vicariously through you. :)


I wish, but alas I can't justify spending that much on an 80mm scope, no matter how nice it is. Actually, let me rephrase that. What I meant to say was, I can't justify to my wife spending that much on an 80mm scope, no matter how nice it is. :grin:






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