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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6246815 - 12/11/13 11:16 AM

P.S. #11 - modern Q's did not come with a cat

Edit, on a more serious note, from memory, another difference is that the finder mirror mount for the very early Q's may have been different maybe not quite as robust as modern Q's. I seem to recall the early Q finder mounts were just bent by hand to align it to the optical axis? (don't try that now, just thinking out loud). If you can get sharp closeups you might try photographing that.

Edited by NeilR (12/11/13 11:20 AM)


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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6246933 - 12/11/13 12:32 PM

A 12th difference... early Q's have a narrower field of view and a correspondingly smaller rear port. My memory is bad on this, but the increased FOV may have been coincident with the move of the spot to the inside of the corrector.

This is important to know because any accessories you buy that thread to the rear port, such as camera coupling plumbing, would have to be threaded for the old style narrower port.

The narrower FOV *might* also adversely affect the use of wider angle eyepieces, such as the 32mm Brandon EPs, or even something wider, should you ever get the top eyepiece port adapter updated. (Might vignette) But you would have to research that because my memory is not clear on these details.


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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6247038 - 12/11/13 01:14 PM Attachment (41 downloads)

Picture of bottom

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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247040 - 12/11/13 01:16 PM Attachment (42 downloads)

Other items

Edited by Copernicus1473 (12/11/13 01:16 PM)


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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247053 - 12/11/13 01:20 PM Attachment (32 downloads)

Scope on tripod legs

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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247074 - 12/11/13 01:28 PM Attachment (36 downloads)

Scope and dew shieled separate

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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247081 - 12/11/13 01:34 PM Attachment (36 downloads)

Back but not a good picture. The eyepieces do screw in but not sure who made them. I will look tonight.

Edited by Copernicus1473 (12/11/13 02:29 PM)


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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247104 - 12/11/13 01:47 PM

You appear to have a "spare" eyepiece adapter. If so, the installed adapter may accommodate Brandon EP's and/or standard 1.25", although you do not appear to have set screws in the EP adapter to hold a standard EP. I am not familiar enough with the various EP adapters to figure it out from the various images.

You have a modern base, not synthane, which makes sense with the serial# change. Most likely drive motor parts were replaced?

Maybe someone with an older scope with push-fit legs can answer this, but I think there should be a set of plugs for the base, to plug the holes for the two tripod legs that fit into the side of the base when the legs are removed? Not necessary but I was curious about that. The images I've seen of early Q's with push fit legs appear to have a very different plug than my 1996 with modern screw in legs.

You have a pair of "thumb screws" in the image- any idea what they fit? OR maybe they are the base plugs?

You seem to have two solar filters, one off axis, and the other filter in the box, which I assume is a slightly less than full solar filter?

Not sure what the large round flat thingy is on the left of your accessory image. Unless it is a lens cap? I recall the earliest OTAs were not threaded for a lens cap so it did not come with the modern screw on metal lens cap. But again my memory is failing me on that accessory.

You should have a 2 pin power cord that plugs into the base. If not, Q can sell you one, or it is said to be a fairly standard plug in AC cord.

Your last image appears to have a finder solar filter, which was probably added during a service. And the new finder mount, which I think would be required for the finder solar filter. As I recall, Questar really wants the old scopes updated with the finder solar filter, for liability reasons (and I suspect they really care about your eyes).

So you have likely had a number of updates already done to the scope, which mitigates most reasons I can think of for not sending it in for a service (unless it just doesn't need it, which is why you need the details on the service).


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munirocks
member


Reged: 10/21/13

Loc: Bourne End, UK
Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6247289 - 12/11/13 03:21 PM

Looks like you've got a full-aperture solar filter (the large "mirrored" filter) in its own protective box - both good. Probably best to store the close-focussing diaphram separately so it doesn't scratch the solar filter.

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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: munirocks]
      #6247323 - 12/11/13 03:34 PM

Thanks Dave. If I had downloaded that image and looked at the larger version I might have read the writing and understood that the stop down ring was sitting top of the solar filter

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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6247818 - 12/11/13 08:33 PM

Jack, is the back of your control box raw metal or painted enamel? It looks enameled to me.

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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6247960 - 12/11/13 10:06 PM

It looks like the metal may have been painted with enamel but I am not 100% sure about that. I do have the cord to plug into the scope. I have two eye pieces that came with it. A 40X and 80X which screw into the the scope. Near the bottom of each eye piece, there are gradations (2, + 0, - 2). I have never seen this before but I don't have much experience. The two thumb screws, screw into the bottom of the scope and may hold the legs in more securely. I have several wooden pegs that fit into the legs. Pretty neat looking.

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munirocks
member


Reged: 10/21/13

Loc: Bourne End, UK
Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6247989 - 12/11/13 10:22 PM

I suggest putting some leather treatment on the outside of the case. In the UK I'd recommend Leatherfood (which is a paste) but not sure if that is available in the USA. Does anyone know what the company recommend? You want something not too oily because you don't want the oil or it's vapours to creep onto the scope. In the early cases the leather forms the hinge so make sure you treat that area especially well.

Edit: That's Chelsea Leather Food. Looks like it is also available in the USA.

Edited by munirocks (12/13/13 12:46 PM)


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Billydee
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Winter Haven, FL
Re: Question and Advice new [Re: munirocks]
      #6248071 - 12/11/13 11:07 PM

Jack,

Where do you live in Maine? There is a major collector of Questars that lives in Maine. He has what is believed to be the largest collection of Qs in the world. He is also the person that has composed most of the papers on Questars and his reports are a major part of the Yahoo Questar Group's files. He opens his website in December for about a week for viewing. You need to join the Yahoo Questar Group so you can access these items. There is an odd thing about your serial number. The first production Q SN was 50 and the first year of production was 1954. Yours is serial number 104 (that means yours is number 55th Q that was made) and Questar told you it's poduction date was 7/1/1955. I wonder what the orginal serial number was before the rework serial number was placed on the bottom of your Q. The orginal bottom was black and would have had a serial number of 5-104 if it was made in 1955. I have seen a list that may show serial number 104 was made in 1954 and would have had 4-104 on the orginal black bottom plate. It also shows that SN 104 may have been the last one made in 1954. This might mean they made a production run of 55 Qs in the first year and did not sell yours until 7/1/55 (this has happened in a number of years). When you call Questar for the information on what the R on your SN means ask them for the orginal SN. The reason this information is stored off site is that Questar is now owned by a larger CNN company that is in another state.

The last picture appears to show a finder solar filter control knob. I wonder if the finder or maybe the whole control box was replaced.

To NeilR: remember that the solar filter on the early Qs is not a screw-on and the rear axial port was a smaller size (.95" -v- 1.2").

Bill

Edited by Billydee (12/11/13 11:25 PM)


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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6248078 - 12/11/13 11:09 PM

I have some photos of SN 114, which is 9 after yours, and appears to be pristine in all ways. In excellent shape and no indication (to me) that it was ever modified. It has the type 1 earliest logo covering the Dec bearings.

That scope has a bare metal control box. The image suggests the control box is "rough", meaning obvious, but I think it was shot with flash in a way that exaggerates that. It may look much smoother in normal light.

If the control box is painted enamel, then it was probably replaced when it was serviced. I recall that the early Q control boxes were not painted. But like many of these changes, it is not clear to me when the painted enamel started.

Comparing the images, I see that the installed EP adapters of your scope and #114 are similar if not identical.

Do the two "thumb screws" have O rings around the wide end? I think they also serve as plugs in the two leg holes. Try it. The O rings should keep them in place. When screwed into the base they act as car window holders. Some early ads show a Q hanging on a car window OUTSIDE the car. That feature was dropped, I guess when they went to screw in legs and changed the plugs.

Could you post an image of the 3 legs, as close as possible to the end that inserts into the base? I've never seen an image of that end of the push fit legs.

I think the silver cylinder coupler in your accessory image is an old camera adapter, sans the extension tube. Probably original. The black adapter may be a later camera coupler? Do both of those adapters have the same threading size on the narrow (resting on the table in your image above)? Does either thread into the optical tube rear port?


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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Billydee]
      #6248371 - 12/12/13 06:23 AM

Bill,

I live in New Hampshire near the Maine border. I have sent a request to the group but the membership is still pending. Hopefully, it will get approved so I can look at his material. I will contact Questar again and see if I can get additional information on the scope. You have all been such a big help and I really appreciate it.

Best Regards,
Jack


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Copernicus1473
super member


Reged: 07/06/12

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: NeilR]
      #6248376 - 12/12/13 06:33 AM

NeilR,

I will take some additional pictures tonight of the control box and 3 legs. I will also check out the "thumb screws" and see if they fit into the leg holes.

Oh, before I forget, the cat loves the case. Every time I get the scope out he jumps inside and makes himself at home

Are you kidding me about the ads showing a Q hanging on a car window OUTSIDE the car? Wow...now that is a confidence or a "leap of faith" that the scope won't fall off. You have provided such a wealth of information.

Best Regards,
Jack

Edited by Copernicus1473 (12/12/13 06:38 AM)


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NeilR
super member


Reged: 02/18/08

Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Billydee]
      #6248526 - 12/12/13 08:54 AM

Quote:

Jack,

... The orginal bottom was black and would have had a serial number of 5-104 if it was made in 1955. ... I have seen a list that may show serial number 104 was made in 1954 and would have had 4-104 on the orginal black bottom plate. It also shows that SN 104 may have been the last one made in 1954...

...The last picture appears to show a finder solar filter control knob. I wonder if the finder or maybe the whole control box was replaced....

To NeilR: remember that the solar filter on the early Qs is not a screw-on and the rear axial port was a smaller size (.95" -v- 1.2").





I have a photo of the bottom plate of #114. The S/N is indicated as "#114". It is my recollection that the year digit was not incorporated in SNs of the earliest Q's. So in this case the '8' is sort of a Red Herring.

The original synthane base plate of #114 has "#114" above the central polar axis leg hole, and below the hole 3 patent numbers are listed, and below that "115V. 60~ A.C.". This is why I am quite sure Jack's base plate is a later update, aside from the fact that it is aluminum and not synthane.

The year was probably added to all SNs sometime in 1957. The earliest record I have is 7-349. SN 246 does not have a date. SN 284 is inscribed "R-2-284" with a notation that it was rebuilt in 1962. It still has an AC motor.

SN 198 and 246 apparently has no year in the SN but both now have a solar filter, 198 was added in 2005. So adding a solar filter did not warrant a "rebuild" added to the SN.

SN 123 was retrofitted with a Power Guide I in 1995, but the list has no indication that the SN was changed (which could be an omission!). I have a PGII in my 1996 Questar, an early version of PGII, and my Q has a flat base. Later versions of PGII require a bevelled baseplate to accommodate a slight increase in size of the drive motor.

If I ever needed a replacement motor I would have to have the base plate replaced, and also would need a new case. I actually have a strange problem with my PGII but I put up with it because I never wanted to go through the expense of all that. But the point is that *I THINK* some of these remanufactured SNs have something to do with base plate replacements required for drive motor repairs and updates. But maybe/probably (?) not all. Most of this is all in the Yahoo archives but I am too lazy to start down that road right now

I am aware that the earliest Q's do not have a threaded barrel, but I have never had such an old Q in my hands and don't know quite how they dealt with filters and caps. I assume it is some sort of press fit.

I previously mentioned that the finder solar filter appeared to be installed. It is my understanding that that can be added to the existing solar filter mount. My original suggestion that the finder cage was substantially different is likely incorrect, due to what I see on photos of #114.

I think the control box was changed because Jack's photo vaguely suggests it is enameled and I think he is confirming it. If it was changed, it is possible that it is the same control box used on modern "wide field" Questars and has that 1.2" port. It is very possible that the owner that had it updated also ended up with two camera couplers, which is why I asked about the diameters.

Jack could help get to the bottom of this by unscrewing the rear port cap and measuring the diameter of the port hole. And also measure the diameter of the narrow threaded end of what I think are two camera couplers.

My most recent "list" is the current list from the Yahoo group, listing slightly over 100 Questars, with SNs and major evolutionary features and options that the group was interested in. Plus 6 field models. There are five "1955" models, or at least that is the year indicated, the first being 114 and the last 230. the next SN is 246, indicated as 1957. I would assume that the years came from inquiries to Questar as to manufacture or sales date, or maybe paperwork that often accompanies older scopes. Over the years there have been discussions of other older Q's, many listed on eBay but unfortunately I did not download images and take notes. At times like this I wish I had! Your "list" seems to be different and I would be curious of the source. I'm not familiar with anything as specific as you mention. A search of the Yahoo archives might be fruitful. I also have the complete archives of the major-domo group that preceded the Yahoo group.

Jack- I was not kidding about hanging the Q on a car window. The 1960 Questar "White Book" is a very extensive 35 page marketing booklet that is almost, but not quite, a manual in itself. Page 9 includes a photo of a Q hanging on the outside of a car window, with the door open, with the following caption:

"It takes but a minute to attach your Questar to the great mass of your car. Just pull out the two front leg plug holes, screw them into the base casting, and hook their wide heads over the lowered glass. Many modern cars are so flat on front and rear decks that Questar may be used from them without attachment"

The car window is cracked only 2 inches or so. From the early years, Questar has stressed the utility of the Questar for birding. I am a birder myself, and have used mine on occasion, although I shoot with a 500/4 lens and tripod and don't usually further complicate my birding with a spotting scope. Plus I am too cheap to buy an erecting prism

I got the pdf for that booklet from the same gentleman Jack mentions. Among other treasures is an image of 18 Questars (14 fully mounted astros), all set up, on a desk top. And that was shot almost 7 years ago. It is a sight to behold . If you do not get accepted into the group within a week, let us know and we will try to tap a shoulder or two.


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Mike E.
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 01/26/10

Loc: Moonstone Observatory
Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Copernicus1473]
      #6249162 - 12/12/13 02:13 PM Attachment (26 downloads)

In following this thread, I was surprised that that the thumb screws/plugs were also to be used for hanging the telescope on a vehicle window, so I had a look on our older 1971 model Q. I noted that indeed the leg holes were threaded, but the coresponding holes in the base plate were not lined up. Perhaps this was intentionally done for safety reasons when the scope was serviced prior to our acquisition ?

Here are a couple of photos.


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Mike E.
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 01/26/10

Loc: Moonstone Observatory
Re: Question and Advice new [Re: Mike E.]
      #6249170 - 12/12/13 02:14 PM Attachment (20 downloads)

Screw holes in base plate out of alignment.

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