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Equipment Discussions >> Classic Telescopes

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turk123
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 07/09/10

Loc: N.E. Ohio
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: HBNorm]
      #6335922 - 01/26/14 01:45 AM

Hi Norm

I would probably take the gearbox apart to see if the gears are rusted or in need of grease. If it tracks well that is a good sign, but I wouldn't want you to damage the gears so, take a peek.

Technically, the setscrews and large bolt are holding a lot of weight, but that weight when everything is mounted, is in perfect balance. It always amazed me how the engineering of these things were done. The castings, shaft and cradle all balance before the counter weight and ota are mounted. That amazes me how that was done.

Edited by turk123 (01/26/14 03:03 PM)


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HBNorm
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Reged: 08/24/12

Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: turk123]
      #6336711 - 01/26/14 01:34 PM

Would it be sacrilege to put a Moonlight focuser on my cave? I would hate to drill any holes that are not stock but it would be nice to have a 10:1 fine focus knob and/or electronic focusing along with compatibility with all my imaging gear. Would be great to hear for/against commentary on this potential upgrade.

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gelkin
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Reged: 09/22/10

Loc: Western, MD.
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: HBNorm]
      #6336725 - 01/26/14 01:42 PM Attachment (10 downloads)

Most focuser changes are covered up by the focuser. Doesn't bother me much.

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TCW
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/05/13

Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: HBNorm]
      #6336733 - 01/26/14 01:45 PM

Quote:

Would it be sacrilege to put a Moonlight focuser on my cave? I would hate to drill any holes that are not stock but it would be nice to have a 10:1 fine focus knob and/or electronic focusing along with compatibility with all my imaging gear. Would be great to hear for/against commentary on this potential upgrade.




As I mentioned before this is my plan. Holes could be filled if there was desire to return it to stock. To me updating a scope is a bit like putting disk brakes on your vintage car - it increases the safety and utility but makes a minimal impact on originality. I would rather see a hot rod out on the road than a un-used car gathering dust in the garage. Upgrading classics insures they will be used more rather than being living room or garage ornaments. To me adding a precision focuser makes a fine scope even better.


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HBNorm
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Reged: 08/24/12

Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: TCW]
      #6336794 - 01/26/14 02:22 PM

Okay, I feel better about upgrading the focuser! Gerald, nice setup!

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tim53
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Reged: 12/17/04

Loc: Highland Park, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: HBNorm]
      #6336866 - 01/26/14 02:59 PM

It's your scope so you can do what you want.

However, it's always best, IMHO, if the mods are simple bolt-ons and can be reversed at some future date.

Another thing to consider is a $2 4-6" quick-grip clamp on one of the focus knobs. I use these all the time as "armstrong microfocusers" on my classics. Basically, get the focus close, then attach one of these clamps to one of the focus knobs, then use the lever arm of the clamp as a micro focuser - pushing it back and forth with fingertip pressure. This also helps you focus without jiggling the scope much, which is something that the 10:1 focuser can't do.

http://www.harborfreight.com/4-inch-ratchet-bar-clamp-spreader-46805.html

-Tim.


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Chuck Hards
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Reged: 05/03/10

Loc: The Great Basin
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: tim53]
      #6336944 - 01/26/14 03:40 PM

The previous, original owner of my Cave 10" Custom Deluxe replaced the focuser with a JMI NGF/motofocus combination. I wasn't too thrilled at first, but I'm becomming more appreciative of the motofocus option as time goes by.

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PiSigma
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/14/09

Loc: North Carolina
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6337496 - 01/26/14 08:06 PM Attachment (11 downloads)

I installed a Lumicon LH2020 helical focuser on my 10" Cave. It has a 2.75" mounting bolt spacing and fit without drilling new holes. It gave me a lot more back focus for astro-photography. I use an extension tube for visual work.

The original focuser is on the left.


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tim53
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Reged: 12/17/04

Loc: Highland Park, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: PiSigma]
      #6337518 - 01/26/14 08:23 PM

Hi Jon:

I have one of those Lumicon focusers on my Kludge Classic 6" f/10.3. A very nice focuser.

My favorite helical is the Carle on my 8" Lightweight Deluxe. If only it were a 2", though. But the Lumicon is nice because the eyepiece (or camera) doesn't rotate.

-Tim.


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PiSigma
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Reged: 10/14/09

Loc: North Carolina
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: tim53]
      #6337527 - 01/26/14 08:30 PM Attachment (15 downloads)

Yea, a classic Carle would be nice but very hard to find. The Lumicon is very smooth and easy to adjust without jiggling things. Very nice for fine focusing and you just adjust the extension tube for rough focus. Easily reversible too. And like you said, it doesn't turn the tube which is nice when I have the camera in.

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Datapanic
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Reged: 10/17/09

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: tim53]
      #6337535 - 01/26/14 08:33 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

In the early 80's I installed a Novak 2" Super Short helical focuser on my 8" Lightweight Deluxe. Back then, the scope wasn't old or even classic, so it was no big deal to enlarge the hole in the tube and drill new holes to mount it As you can see, it has a 1" height that allowed SLR's (back then) to get to Prime Focus and DSLR's as well (now).

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Datapanic
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Reged: 10/17/09

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: Datapanic]
      #6337542 - 01/26/14 08:39 PM Attachment (11 downloads)

As Tim said, it would be great if there were a 2" version of the Carle Photo/Visual focuser. It also has about a 1" height and also allows for rough focus by sliding the outer draw tube in and out. The process of fine focus on this one or the Novak both involve rotating the camera which is a bothersome process, but once the camera is at focus, it doesn't need much more adjustment.

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HBNorm
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Reged: 08/24/12

Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: Datapanic]
      #6337664 - 01/26/14 09:48 PM

Nice mods guys. The previous owner has two sets of mirror mounting holes drilled. Not sure if this was standard or not but he was an avid photographer (and astrophotographer). Jon, great shot of Jupiter BTW!

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youngamateur42
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Reged: 11/21/12

Loc: La Verne, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: Datapanic]
      #6337714 - 01/26/14 10:07 PM

Dan, if you ever get tired of that old Carle, PM me!

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TCW
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/05/13

Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: PiSigma]
      #6337721 - 01/26/14 10:14 PM

Nice photo!

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tim53
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Reged: 12/17/04

Loc: Highland Park, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice new [Re: HBNorm]
      #6337989 - 01/27/14 01:16 AM

Quote:

Nice mods guys. The previous owner has two sets of mirror mounting holes drilled. Not sure if this was standard or not but he was an avid photographer (and astrophotographer). Jon, great shot of Jupiter BTW!




A lot of the old classics had dual mirror mounting holes for moving the primary forward for AP.

Recently, I tried something different. I have a Panasonic GF3 mirrorless camera that I bought adapters for so I could use my SLR lenses and telescope adapters with it. Of course, they make the adapters for SLR body depths, so they're usually really long. So I took one and cut out the middle and epoxied it back together. Now I won't have all that length to keep me from reaching prime focus without moving the primary.

Here's the camera with the cut-down adapter I made attached. Above is a standard-length t-thread adapter.



Here it is in a 1 1/4" Sky Micro focuser:



-Tim.


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HBNorm
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Reged: 08/24/12

Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice [Re: tim53]
      #6338681 - 01/27/14 12:32 PM

Picked up a GSO 2" Crawford 2-speed on Astromart that will need a new base plate. Based on a check of the circumference and verified by a diameter measurement, it looks like the OTA diameter is 13" OD? Wonder if I can get a proper base plate for that...

I'll be taking the mirrors today to L&L Optical in Santa Ana, Ca. Cost for the enhanced coatings will run less than $300 for both mirrors. According to L&L, if recoating down the road is needed, the enhanced coatings are removed in the same way aluminized coatings are via acid bath so no regrinding or heating necessary.

As for the mount, I'm going to disassemble, clean, and bead or sand blast the parts, and get them powder coated. They have both wrinkle and hammercoat finishes available. I'll have the counterweight bar, weight, and aluminum pieces polished as well. Any suggested coatings on the counterweight bar and weight? Are they stainless underneath that rust?

Thanks for your guidance!

Norm

Edited by HBNorm (01/27/14 12:34 PM)


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Chuck Hards
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Reged: 05/03/10

Loc: The Great Basin
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice [Re: HBNorm]
      #6338880 - 01/27/14 02:14 PM

Quote:

Picked up a GSO 2" Crawford 2-speed on Astromart that will need a new base plate.
Norm




Call Manish at Agena Astro.

http://agenaastro.com/


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HBNorm
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Reged: 08/24/12

Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6339232 - 01/27/14 05:15 PM Attachment (10 downloads)

So the mount is almost apart. Now I'm having a problem removing the lock collar on the RA shaft that is behind the motor housing back plate. I cut down an allen wrench to remove the two set screws. Now what? The lock collar will move back and forth a little bit like a lock screw is moving across a flat surface...but both screws are removed. Cant move it up or down and that portion of the shaft is clean. Please help!!! Thanks!!!

Norm


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Datapanic
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/17/09

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: Just Picked Up a Cave Astrola 10" - Need Advice [Re: HBNorm]
      #6339249 - 01/27/14 05:28 PM

While you have movement back and forth, inspect the shaft on both ends and look and feel for small gouges caused by the set screws and file them down smooth. The Clock Drive Clutch set screw and the bearing set screws can all cause this. Remove any little bits of debris on the shaft and use a lot of Liquid Wrench to help loosen it up.

Once all the gouges are smoothed down, you should be able to bop the shaft back and forth with a rubber mallet until it eventually comes out - usually, it's best that it comes out the Clock Drive End as there are less gouges to deal with. Sometimes, the entire bearing, even though the set screws are out, will come out with the shaft. Either way, be ready to catch it once it gets loose!

In your photo, that is the entire SealMaster bearing which is pressed in to the RA Shaft Housing. There is no separate lock collar.


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