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Celestron Edge HD14 USA Made!?

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#26 TG

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 05:02 PM

Chris Go, of planetary imaging fame (he uses a C14), some time back posted pics on Facebook of large HD SCTs being assembled in Torrance CA. I asked him to make sure and he confirmed that they were indeed assembling SCTs in CA from Chinese made parts. In fact, from his comments on his FB pics, I inferred that they were also assembling C11HDs there (could be a mistake on his part, I didn't ask).

If you are on FB, search for him and "follow" him to see the pictures.

Tanveer.

#27 TG

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 05:23 PM

Actually, I went back and took a second look. In one of the pictures, it's clearly a C11HD (I have a sharpened crop but CN TOS will probably not allow me to post it here). In another picture, you can tell it's C14s and C11s in fork mounts (or perhaps even C9.25s) by the difference in sizes.

Goes completely against what has been assumed in recent years.

Tanveer.

#28 jrcrilly

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 07:15 PM

...he confirmed that they were indeed assembling SCTs in CA from Chinese made parts.


That would settle it. They would NOT qualify for a "Made in USA" label then (check the FTC website).

#29 jrbarnett

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 11:22 PM

Thanks for that.

I'm grilling some crow. Who deserves some? :grin:

- Jim

#30 rmollise

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 08:07 AM

And so it goes on Cloudy Nights...I'm just surprised there's only two measly pages of posts on this...vital issue.

:rofl2:

#31 dpippel

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 09:04 AM

:roflmao:

#32 Footbag

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 09:25 AM

If they are assembling them in Torrence, don't you think they would advertise it?

Finding out something is USA made or assembled always makes me feel better about my purchase. But people only care if they know.

#33 crow

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 10:25 AM

Its interesting for a few reasons given that virtually everything that is mass produced is made in China. I'd say to Celestron, if you can do it, manufacture something more or less entirely in North America, you're welcome in Canada. Wage rates are pretty low here in the mountains, people are generally happy to ski and enjoy the basics. Celestron, I'd be happy to help. :smirk:

I wonder if they get amused by all the speculation?

I imagine they rely on posts like this to get the word out, I mean what do they advertise, 'made in the USA from chinese parts'? Often word of mouth, speculation is a very good marketing tool.

Frankly any industry that comes back to the US even in a small way, you guys should be applauding.

#34 jrbarnett

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 11:51 AM

Vital? Maybe that depends on who you are. Clearly there are prospective buyers who care about such things. "Made in USA" is a positive rather than a negative for manufacturers from a marketing perspective as a result. That's why there is actually a regulatory framework to vetting whether a manufacturer can really claim that it's goods are made in America. If so, that manufacturer has competitive advantage over other manufacturers offering similar goods that are not US made.

The fact that Celestron's C14 EdgeHD shipping box says "Made in China" means just that. "Word of mouth" marketing to the contrary is not fair to the competition or to consumers. So maybe it's not "vital" but it is important since it affects buying behavior and the competitive landscape in a very competitive low margin industry.

Regards,

Jim

#35 crow

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 12:13 PM

I'm not sure how unfairness comes in it? As another poster has mentioned Celestron themselves don't make a big deal of the fact they assemble the larger ota's in the USA.

As you say, Made in China is pretty broadly printed on the side of the box.

A few years into the production of the Edge scopes an article comes out mentioning assembly in the USA. Of course we could live in an Orwellian state where every article is censured, I'm not sure that would help the general prosperity much though.

#36 jrbarnett

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 12:41 PM

Unfairness in the sense that folks reading this forum might rely on the "made in USA" statement quoted and order one, only to be disappointed when it shows up and plainly says "Made in China" on the box. Likewise, the other guy making 14" SCTs (in Mexico) might have had a better chance to win that buyer's business had the buyer known that he was mistaken in believing that the 14" Celestron was NOT made in China.

That's how misleading statements such as the one quoted in the article are unfair to consumers and to competitors.

- Jim

#37 George N

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 04:04 PM

I don't know the legal requirements for labeling something "made in the USA", but I'd suspect that items assembled in the USA from parts made in China has to be labeled "made in China".

Personally, I don't care where stuff I buy is made, but I would be happier purchasing a HD14 assembled in the USA simply because it would be more likely to survive without damage along the shorter shipping trip to my USA address. Also, it would be nice if repairs were needed if there was no need to ship something as big and delicate as a C-14 all the way to China.

#38 my_universe

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 12:28 PM

Turns out the article in Astronomy describes that the corrector plates for the HD 14 are made from scratch in Torrance. Grinding, polishing, figuring, testing, and coating, then the secondary mirror is hand-figured as needed. The optics are then installed and collimated. So, not enough to claim "made in USA" for the scope, apparently, but a bit more than merely assembled there.

#39 rmollise

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 12:43 PM

The corrector plates are not "figured" in any conventional sense of the word. They are still produced using Tom Johnson's original Master Block process, and any additional touchups required for an inspec optical set are applied to the secondary.

#40 Ed Holland

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 01:59 PM

Turns out the article in Astronomy describes that the corrector plates for the HD 14 are made from scratch in Torrance. Grinding, polishing, figuring, testing, and coating, then the secondary mirror is hand-figured as needed. The optics are then installed and collimated. So, not enough to claim "made in USA" for the scope, apparently, but a bit more than merely assembled there.


Thanks for restating this :) - I think it got overlooked in the midst of the discussion when I mentioned it earlier.

Ed

#41 jrbarnett

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 03:14 PM

Aren't the Celestron correctors molded or pressed rather than ground and figured? I though that was the innovation that allowed mass-production. Otherwise, SCTs would cost much more if correctors were made by figuring, grinding and polishing.

- Jim

#42 RodgerHouTex

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 05:54 PM

I'm virtually certain that they are not cast or pressed. First, I've never heard of anyone doing that successfully except in the case of plastic lenses. It only works with plastic because of the lower melting point of the plastic compared to the master which is metal or glass. Plus you can't really create precise optical surfaces due to uneven shrinkage during cooling.

#43 jrcrilly

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 07:08 PM

They are pulled by a vacuum against a surface machined with the reverse of the desired shape and then the other surface is ground flat. When they are released and the glass relaxes the desired shape results.

#44 herrointment

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 11:21 PM

"Aren't the Celestron correctors molded or pressed rather than ground and figured?"

You are pulling the collective leg here, right?

#45 TG

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:09 AM

They are pulled by a vacuum against a surface machined with the reverse of the desired shape and then the other surface is ground flat.


These are the so-called master blocks and must be figured by hand. Reportedly, Tom Johnson was the only one who knew how but he was supposed to train some people in making the master blocks.

Tanveer

#46 Ennis

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 10:36 AM

"Aren't the Celestron correctors molded or pressed rather than ground and figured?"

You are pulling the collective leg here, right?


No, he isn't.






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