ASTROSCAN by Edmund Scientic Company
Posted 29 July 2014 - 09:16 PM
Posted 29 July 2014 - 09:21 PM
Looks like it's the year of the Astroscan. I just picked up one off CL last Friday. It is in excellent shape and for $25 bucks it could not be past up. It did not have the base or sling but did have the RKE 28mm eyepiece and owner manual. It has an round, orange tag with hand written serial # in the 41K range. I had it out last Saturday and it gave very good images, that is, when a star peaked out from behind the clouds. I will post some photos of it later.
Glad you got it - I had been watching that one, the price was right, but I don't need another scope!
Posted 29 July 2014 - 09:21 PM
Posted 29 July 2014 - 09:28 PM
I guess the red-dot sight would expedite the process, at least.
Posted 30 July 2014 - 09:59 AM
Nice work on your other scope (8 incher?). I'm enjoying the photos of it and I love that electronic focuser you put on it.
Posted 30 July 2014 - 10:06 AM
Posted 30 July 2014 - 09:29 PM
Posted 04 August 2014 - 11:11 AM
speaking of Astroscans....I've got an issue. The inside of the optical window is clouded over with some kind of crud and I can't get it out to clean it. I got the retaining ring off OK, but the glass is stuck tight. I sure don't want to pry on it, and with the OTA being plastic, I've been hesitant to hit it with the heat gun in case there's any stickum in there which is holding the glass in place.
Another issue to address while I have it open, the primary is rattling a bit. Should I care? Assuming I can get it open, how is it secured, should I remove it and attempt to silicone it back in place? How would I insure it was collimated before I let the adhesive set? I'm tempted to leave that bit alone, but the rattling is annoying.
Edited by MtnGoat, 04 August 2014 - 12:20 PM.
Posted 04 August 2014 - 10:27 PM
Well it may be that it was 98 degrees when I gave it another go, but the optical window came loose the instant I pressed on it through the focuser hole.
The mirror rattle is because the foam on the backside is toast...it basically crumbled away when I removed the mirror. The search for some foam the right thickness begins!
I'm a little jazzed, this scope has always given decent views in spite of the haze and rattling, I can hardly wait to see what it's like after a tune up!
Posted 08 August 2014 - 11:49 AM
I found one both dated and serial numbered.
1986 and serial number 44108.
The original owner recalls Dad getting it for him in 86. The original owner recalls himself as being a good excuse for Dad to get the scope for Halley's Comet. I've recieved a few stories about Dad that are similar to this, from original owners of various scopes.
It appears Japan did some improvements, one of them the date with serial number. Probably more Japan's decision since Edmund never seemed to give much of a rooty tooty about documenting any dates with serial numbers. The lens cover is much heavier and stonger with a fancier face. The drawtube is blackened outside. The generally superior Carton optics are frequently commented on. "MADE IN JAPAN" can be seen on the central emblem and it is also cast into the housing around the bold inserts.
The previously mentioned scope, serial number 52340, had Made in USA cast in the housing around the bolt inserts.
Posted 08 August 2014 - 12:08 PM
AS Bought. Whitehall Elevator Travelite tripod that the seller said was probably older than the scope. Eyepiece height is 53 inches at horizontal. After all, Dad wanted to see the comet. This tripod shows patina of the years but is in excellent mechanical shape and all there. All metal and much more robust than it looks. I've already used it and am surprised how well it handles the scope. Straight up is not ergonomical for grabbing the handle but it does hold without excessive clamping and the center column holds with light clamp pressure. It is easy to tip so not to be left alone with kids at outreach. A little clean up and it will make a very nice 'original owner' item, very vintage appearance.
12mm RKE with the lens scrambled. I'll have to open one of my other ones to get the lens right. Typical case of a person undoing the eyepiece and not realizing there are 8 different ways to put just two lens back in. I've seen this before too, with an RKE on an Astroscan, and the view is very telltale. This is why the scope did not sell for cheap, along with being in the boondocks of on nowhere, North West of Ft. Collins Co. He met me closer to town. The ep glass looks very good. Nice RKE.
This has the tripod bracket which is a nice optional accessory, but NO BASE. The dog dish is looking good.
The seller is going to check with his dad on the base, paperwork, and anything else.
Posted 08 August 2014 - 12:51 PM
So, the Japanese production did extend into 1986! My Edmund contacts all gave 1985 as the last year it was made over there. Nice find!
Edited by amicus sidera, 08 August 2014 - 12:53 PM.
Posted 08 August 2014 - 01:16 PM
Here's the short end, about 29" to the eyepiece.
85 - 86? They might have stopped manufacturing in 85, but still have been shipping out stock in 86. Who knows. I do know the seller gave me his story while knowing nothing about the serial number or time lines and everything matched.
I was in a bit of a quandary about my three oldies and concerns about the mirrors built up using the masked deposition. Problem solved now, I'll keep both my oldest number 5718 and the Japan 44108. I can base them both for outreach. The other two are now no brainers for departure.
Posted 08 August 2014 - 01:22 PM
Edmund has been selling Astroscan bases (the newer, thinner style) on Ebay on and off this past couple of months for $20 apiece, if you want get hold of a pair. Better yet, call scientifics.com and see if they have any for sale directly, if you're interested.
Posted 09 August 2014 - 12:05 AM
Got the thing reassembled, that mirror circlip is not for the faint of heart.
number 12911, i don't know how old that is. plain chromed drawtube, friction tangs at the top. you have to be careful not to mess with the focuser without an eyepiece, you can roll the drawtube all the way in past the roller!
Posted 09 August 2014 - 10:10 AM
Bend one of the little slotted tab ends outward and it will keep the drawtube from taking the plunge
Posted 09 August 2014 - 11:00 AM
Congrats on the repair, MtnGoat! That is not an easy job, at all. How are the views in it now?
Your #12911 was produced in late 1978. As Dave mentioned, bending one tab out slightly, just enough to catch, will prevent mishaps (which seems to happen fairly often if you let children use the scope!); this was usually done at the factory.
Edited by amicus sidera, 09 August 2014 - 11:10 AM.
Posted 11 August 2014 - 12:17 PM
You're danged tootin' it wasn't easy! Holy cow talk about stress inducing. The one handed action, totally blind, to compress a steel spring right above the surface of the primary you can't see is not fun!
I'm glad I did, though. getting rid of that haze on the inside of the optical window made a huge difference, there is now a vast background of very faint stars visible in the milky way, it's already better with the full moon present than it was in a moonless sky. I can't wait to try it out under better conditions. Perhaps a hint of the veil?
Posted 11 August 2014 - 10:32 PM
I was inspired by the dog dish. I thought this was a note worthy find. I'll take the Scan with me tomorrow and check the next size up if Petco has it in the same color. The bottom rim has a removable black rubber non skid trim.
Posted 18 August 2014 - 08:33 PM
Due to some CN generosity, and some string input, I've managed to acquire the two missing bases I needed. The red dog bowl of the previous entry worked so well I took the scope in and checked the fit of the largest bowl available. The largest one worked better. The scope sits on the rim, but the bottom of the ball is very close to the bottom of the bowl. This will let an original size bolt hold the bowl to the scope in the original fashion. The size difference can be seen in comparing the previous picture.
Posted 18 August 2014 - 10:09 PM
Took the Astro out for it's first run since I got it back together, last Friday. Working great! Cleaning did wonders, with the haze gone from the window I can resolve M13 and the Milky Way is way, way more intense than before. I didn't bollix the collimation, it still looks pretty good.
After I got tired of sweeping and decided to have a look at a few favorites, I ran into my usual issue with actual targets, finding em. Sure it has a wide field but it's still tougher than you'd expect to figure out where it's actually pointed. That's when I remembered what showed up in the mail from Amazon, intended for use with one of the bigger toys, a 5 mW laser sight and the mounting rail to go with it.
Some packing tape and a shim (tube sides not exactly parallel to optical axis) and I was in buisness, it works great.
it's the ideal form factor for this little scope and the only issue I ran into was the combined weight of my wide field eyepiece and the sight results in the scope slipping in altitude at angles lower than about 45 degrees. No big deal, but a factor.