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Swift Telescope - Model 831

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#1 Rory In Utah

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Posted 30 July 2014 - 11:40 PM

Hi Everyone!

Quick question. I have a Swift Model 831 (Serial #: 643114) that appears to be mostly unused. The scope OTA is in its original plastic. As far as I can tell, it has all of the standard components supplied with the instrument and case when purchased new, plus a few extras.

The wooden case has no damage except scratches from being moved around for 50 years. I was thinking of refinishing the case to make the outside as pristine as the contents, and interior.

But... Maybe I’m watching the antiques road show too much, but I've also heard that it's a bad idea to alter things that are 50 years old. It’s an easy repair to bring the outside of the case back to pristine condition.

Question: Would it devalue it to restore the exterior of the case, or should I leave it in an altered condition?

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Thanks, Rory.

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#2 Don Taylor

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 06:22 PM

you might want to post this over on the classic telescopes forum. Lots of great people there and I think they will have the information you need.



#3 jjbird

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 06:56 PM

I would leave the case alone if you are thinking of selling it, and let your buyer have the choice. If you are keeping it, it's your call.



#4 stevep

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 07:03 PM

Hi Everyone!

Quick question. I have a Swift Model 831 (Serial #: 643114) that appears to be mostly unused. The scope OTA is in its original plastic. As far as I can tell, it has all of the standard components supplied with the instrument and case when purchased new, plus a few extras.

The wooden case has no damage except scratches from being moved around for 50 years. I was thinking of refinishing the case to make the outside as pristine as the contents, and interior.

But... Maybe I’m watching the antiques road show too much, but I've also heard that it's a bad idea to alter things that are 50 years old. It’s an easy repair to bring the outside of the case back to pristine condition.

Question: Would it devalue it to restore the exterior of the case, or should I leave it in an altered condition?

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Thanks, Rory.

From your descripition, sounds like you have a fantastic scope, in excellent original condition, I think if it was me I would leave the case as is,

if it only shows a few exterior scratches then that would be fine, 

 

Regards

Steve



#5 CharlieB

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 10:27 PM

Don't think about selling it - think about using it.  You have a superb 76mm scope - trust me, I know this to be true.   If you do sell it, make sure it goes to someone who will appreciate it, not flip it.



#6 rcwolpert

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 01:37 AM

Hi Everyone!

Quick question. I have a Swift Model 831 (Serial #: 643114) that appears to be mostly unused. The scope OTA is in its original plastic. As far as I can tell, it has all of the standard components supplied with the instrument and case when purchased new, plus a few extras.

The wooden case has no damage except scratches from being moved around for 50 years. I was thinking of refinishing the case to make the outside as pristine as the contents, and interior.

But... Maybe I’m watching the antiques road show too much, but I've also heard that it's a bad idea to alter things that are 50 years old. It’s an easy repair to bring the outside of the case back to pristine condition.

Question: Would it devalue it to restore the exterior of the case, or should I leave it in an altered condition?

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

Thanks, Rory.

 

Can you post some pictures here. I would love to see the scope and case.

 

- Bob



#7 rcwolpert

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 01:41 AM

By the way, mine is 643028...we both have scopes from 1964.

 

- Bob



#8 photiost

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 09:13 AM

Rory, welcome to Cloudy Nights.

 

As already mentioned the Swift Model 831 is one of the finest  (<80mm) telescopes out there.

 

Enjoy it, use it, its a keeper.

 

If possible, do post some images.

 

Congrats.



#9 roscoe

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 10:03 AM

Welcome to Cloudy Nights, Rory. 

 

My Swift is a '64 also, it's a very fine scope, though perhaps a bit under-mounted.  As your case is in good condition (from your description), putting a light coat of furniture oil..... watco or tung oil or linseed oil or the like, as opposed to a coat of a modern polyurethane, would make the case look nice without altering the finish patina.  A strip-and-refinish is sometimes necessary if the piece is in truly poor condition (My Swift tripod had mouldered away in a damp basement for many years, it was rust and mildew and peeling varnish....Antiques Roadshow wouldn't have let it in the door.... but a cared-for vintage piece is of high value. Wiping it with a damp sponge and looking at it before it dries will show you what appearance a wipe-on coat of oil would create.  A wipedown and rinse alone might make it look quite a bit better.

R



#10 bremms

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 02:20 PM

They are nice scopes. The mount was very stable for the 60mm and OK for the 80mm. Same basic mount as the Monolux and Mayflower.



#11 photiost

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 09:34 AM

By the way, mine is 643028...we both have scopes from 1964.

 

- Bob

 

My serial number is: 633020 ... scope is from 1963








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