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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!!
      #5963540 - 07/10/13 05:41 AM

Hi,

I am an urban observer doing mainly visual deep-sky observing with small telescopes. I also like doing lunar and planetary observing when the sky conditions are ideal for high power viewing.

Due to weather restrictions (cloudy skies) I prefer using telescopes that allow impromptu observing sessions: One of the many reasons I prefer using refractors. But due to some back problems, I have restrictions on the weight of the equipment that I can handle. That's the main reason that many years ago I picked a 5-inch apo as my largest refractor (a TeleVue NP127is), and it's been my favorite telescope ever since. However, sometimes looking at the planets in excellent seeing conditions, I have wished I had a larger refractor.

However, my budget would never allow me to afford a premium 6-inch refractor. So given the few options on this niche market (relatively affordable 6-inch apos), and after weighting their pros and cons, I placed my order for the one that best suited my search criteria with the clear prospect in my mind that the images would fall in between that of a 6-inch achro and that of a 6-inch quality apo. So it would be a compromise from the start, but an acceptable one for me given my specific circumstances: Mainly the ability to order it from a major U.S. vendor from stock using my limited payment options -No Paypal, so no used telescope market.

I recently received my new Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor [model ED152CF] and I wanted to share a few impressions with you. The brief moments that I have looked through the telescope (due to poor weather) have been consistent with my expectations. I have looked at Saturn, the Moon, a few double stars and some deep-sky objects in humid conditions (haze) and the views have been pleasant. When comparing the views of Saturn through the ED152CF with the views through the NP127is, I have experienced either better color saturation at the same magnification or similar color saturation using higher magnification on the ED152CF. The Cassini Division was clearly seen on both telescopes, with a bit more resolution showing on the 6-inch scope. I am a simple observer with poor command of the English language (not my native language) and no technical background, so I would not be interested in doing a review of the telescope, I leave that to more knowledgeable CN'ers.

When I was researching for this telescope I found some comments and very few pictures from owners of the ED152CF. So I thought I could contribute in this department, even if the quality of my pictures leave much to be desired since they were taken with a tiny lens camera. But I can assure you they are much better than my drawings... I hope that you like them!



Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor OTA with user supplied Losmandy
D-series Saddle Plate [DUP] below and V-series Universal Saddle Plate [VUP] on top.
Optical Tube Outer Diameter: 7", Lenth of Optical Tube Assembly (incl. Dew Shield): 52".



Removable Dew Shield. Outer Diameter:9". Lens Cap can be attached or removed with
the Dew Shield On.



Dual Split Mounting Rings attached to an old user-suplied Losmandy Universal "D" Mounting
Plate [DUP] 14" long. On top of the Mounting Rings a user supplied Losmandy "V" type
Dovetail Plate [VUP] 14" long was attached for added rigidity. The original telescope handle
and TeleVue Starbeam Finder was installed on the top plate.



Included with the telescope is a 3" Feather Touch Focuser (Model 3035) with extension and
Explore Scientific 2" Dielectric Star Diagonal. A user supplied Stellarvue illuminated 9x50mm
right-angle Finderscope was installed on the included finder bracket.



Side view of the included 3" Feather Touch Focuser with extension
and fine focus knob, Explore Scientific 2" Dielectric Star Diagonal.



Original Explore Scientific 7.5" (short) "D" Type Mounting Dovetail Plate (below) was upgraded
to an old user suplied Losmandy Universal Mounting Plate (DUP) 14" (above). Each ring was
attached via one user-supplied central metric type Mounting Bolt, plus two included metric
type Screws at each side (the "shiny" holes for the side screws were drilled by the user).
Each ring has three factory drilled holes for metric type bolts/screws. In my view, the
original mounting plate was too short to safely and stably holding a telescope of this size.



Included Explore Scientific 8x50mm right-angle Finderscope (below) with illuminated Polar
Alignment Reticle. User supplied Stellarvue F50 illuminated 9x50mm right-angle Finderscope
(above) was prefered because for visual observing there is no need for Polar Alignment Reticle.
The included Explore Scientific finder bracked was used but the original white nylon screws
were replaced for black nylon screws for aesthetics. At right, the included Explore Scientific
Mounting "D" type Mounting Plate (length 7.5") w/o any provision for safety bolts was user
replaced with a longer Losmandy Dovetail Plate (a safety knob included for illustration).



Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor on a Losmandy
G-11 Mount with 12" Tripod Extension. Two Casady Stainless Steel
Counterweights were required to balance the scope: 15 lbs. + 7.7 lbs.



Close-up view. Also pictured, TeleVue 2" Everbrite Star Diagonal, TeleVue 35mm Panoptic
Eyepiece, Stellarvue 9x50 Finderscope and TeleVue Starbeam Finder.



Rear wiew of the telescope on the mount looking up.



Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor on a Losmandy
G-11 Mount with 12" Tripod Extension and TeleVue NP127is Apo
Refractor on a Losmandy GM8 Mount. Drum Stools included for scale.



Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor on Losmandy G-11 Mount with 12"
Tripod Extension and TeleVue NP127is Apo Refractor on Losmandy GM8 Mount: Close-up View.



Close-up view of the telescope on the mount with the Losmandy 12" Tripod Extension.
The original telescope handle and TeleVue Starbeam Finder were installed on top of a
Losmandy 14" VUP Dovetail Plate. Stellarvue 9x50 Finderscope on the included ES backet.



Both telescopes on their respective mount looking straight up.
Drum Stools included for height reference.



Side view of both telescopes on their respective mount looking straight
up. Drum Stools at same height included for reference. Looking straight
up through the ED152CF is comfortable, while looking straight up through
the NP127is is not. In my opinion, the NP127is would benefit much if the
GM8 LW Tripod was replaced with a G-11 HD Tripod. To be fair with the
NP127is, before the arrival of the new 6-inch telescope, the NP127is was
used on either mount depending on the requirements of each observing
session. But soon after deciding on purchasing the ED152CF a 12" Tripod
Extension was ordered to add the necessary height for satisfactory use
of the long Explore Scientific 6" Apo Refractor on the G-11 Mount.

You can find better resolution pictures at My CN Gallery - Explore Scientific ED152CF


I hope this long post can be beneficial for someone trying to decide if this telescope is for him/her or not. Even if this telescope is lightweight for a 6-inch refractor (with the carbon fiber tube), it is still a long tube, so there could be mounting concerns. That is why I decided to include pictures of the Explore Scientific ED152CF together with the TeleVue NP127is, which is a well known 5-inch refractor.

If you were expecting a thorough review, I am sorry to disappoint you, but my post never pretended to be one. Just a collection of pictures with captions...

Regards!


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CounterWeight
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5963617 - 07/10/13 07:44 AM

Castor,
Thank you for the long post -with images- on the scope! Great work considering the language difference, I don't notice it. Would be nice to see a 'glass shot' of the lens / cell if you have one. Congratulations on getting a nice big glass triplet, look forward to reading more of your impressions.


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Illinois
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/18/06

Loc: near Dixon, Illinois USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #5963656 - 07/10/13 08:25 AM

WOW! NICE! I would love to own your super scope! Thanks for the pictures! Nice!

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David PavlichAdministrator
Transmographied
*****

Reged: 05/18/05

Loc: Mandeville, LA USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5963839 - 07/10/13 10:53 AM

Carbon fibre is good. Congratulations! Looking forward to numerous reports on its performance!

David


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SteveC
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 06/15/06

Loc: Sunshine State & Ocean State
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5964318 - 07/10/13 04:08 PM

Great pictures.

I have a TEC140 mounted on a G11, so I'm amazed how your ES152 makes the mount look so small.

Good luck with your new scope.


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niteskystargazer
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/05/09

Loc: 41-43'-28" N 87-42'-39" W
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5964476 - 07/10/13 05:47 PM

Castor,

Congrads on your New Scope .

CS,KLU,

,

Tom


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Scott BeithAdministrator
SRF
*****

Reged: 11/26/03

Loc: Frederick, MD
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: niteskystargazer]
      #5964717 - 07/10/13 08:45 PM

That is a really nice looking setup!

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DeanS
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 07/12/05

Loc: Central Kentucky
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Scott Beith]
      #5964772 - 07/10/13 09:26 PM

Sweet!

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #5965053 - 07/11/13 12:31 AM

Quote:

Castor,
Thank you for the long post -with images- on the scope! Great work considering the language difference, I don't notice it. Would be nice to see a 'glass shot' of the lens / cell if you have one. Congratulations on getting a nice big glass triplet, look forward to reading more of your impressions.



Hi Jim,

Thank you for your kind words! I'm happy to oblige with your request for the 'glass shot'. The branding on the lens cell is a little blurred because of the fixed focus of the 'camera', but here you have it:


Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor: Lens photographed outdoor in full
sunlight with reflections of the sky and backyard grid. It's possible to see a glimpse of the
interior, including a tube baffle.



Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor: Lens mounted
on a Collimatable Lens Cell with two sets of Push/Pull Collimation
Screws clearly visible. Black lines on the lens are just reflections of
a metal grid on the backyard. Photo taken outdoor in full daylight.

As stated previously, you can find better resolution pictures at My CN Gallery - Explore Scientific ED152CF


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5965077 - 07/11/13 01:13 AM

Illinois,

Thank you! I see you have a brand-new Explore Scientific 127mm ED Apo Triplet Refractor among other scopes, plenty to keep you busy for a while!


David Pavlich,

Yes, Carbon Fiber is good, specially for your back. Many years ago, my first "large" refractor was a Meade AR-6 achromatic refractor that I used to mount on an Atlas EQ Mount. Every time that I used that scope/mount combo I had a sore back for about a week. I sold that telescope soon after I acquired the NP127is apo and just the memory of the back pain has kept me away from 6-inch apos for a long time.

The lightweight carbon fiber tube of the Explore Scientific 152mm ED has made the difference: After quite a few iterations of setting the telescope on the G-11 mount and disassembling, I have yet to experience any back pain. Maybe carbon fiber is not the best material for refractor optical tubes, but at least it is healthy for their owner's back.


SteveC,

Thank you! The ED152CF is indeed a large telescope for it's aperture, but is also relatively light. When mounted on the G-11 it is stable and I can focus the telescope at high power without any problem. I used it momentarily on the GM8 for some indoor testing and had to go back to the G-11 immediately: Terrible vibrations!

Thank you Tom -Niteskygazer, Scott_Beith and DeanS for your compliments!


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Illinois
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/18/06

Loc: near Dixon, Illinois USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5965287 - 07/11/13 08:23 AM

Quote:

Illinois,

Thank you! I see you have a brand-new Explore Scientific 127mm ED Apo Triplet Refractor among other scopes, plenty to keep you busy for a while!






Last night, I looked at Saturn....WOW! Sharp and clearly! Cassini's Division and grey bands is clearly! M4 and M80 is easily to see and pinpoint stars. I test double-double stars in Lyra...see all 4 stars is easy, sharp and pinpoint! I am happy!

I want to hear from your report on your new telescope! Enjoy!


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Bill Cowles
MacGyver
*****

Reged: 04/16/06

Loc: Utah
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5966202 - 07/11/13 06:53 PM



Bill


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ji4m
member
*****

Reged: 12/29/10

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5968124 - 07/12/13 09:30 PM

Wow, yeah, that looks nice, nice, nice. Congrats!

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Illinois]
      #5968288 - 07/12/13 11:17 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Illinois,

Thank you! I see you have a brand-new Explore Scientific 127mm ED Apo Triplet Refractor among other scopes, plenty to keep you busy for a while!






Last night, I looked at Saturn....WOW! Sharp and clearly! Cassini's Division and grey bands is clearly! M4 and M80 is easily to see and pinpoint stars. I test double-double stars in Lyra...see all 4 stars is easy, sharp and pinpoint! I am happy!

I want to hear from your report on your new telescope! Enjoy!




Illinois,

Congrats on your new scope, I'm glad you are happy with it and thank you for sharing your views!

As I stated on my initial post, writing a report was never in my plans. Not enough technical knowledge, the always present language barrier and the constant local bad weather conspire against it. As an example, due to cloudy skies I haven't been able to use the telescope since the day I made the first observations.

Clear skies to you!


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: ji4m]
      #5968312 - 07/12/13 11:37 PM

Thank you Bill and ji4m!

I enjoyed doing the pics and I'm glad you liked them!

Regards,


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Paul G
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 05/08/03

Loc: Freedonia
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5968566 - 07/13/13 06:11 AM

Congrats on the scope! And your command of the language is better than some native speakers.

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Illinois
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/18/06

Loc: near Dixon, Illinois USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Paul G]
      #5968607 - 07/13/13 07:55 AM

I am not good English no matter how hard I try! I am deaf and English is difficult for me! Math that you can understand but not English! Hearing told me some is depends on sounds or that's the way it is!

I am deaf but nothing stop me what I like to do...astronomy, fossil hunting and metal detector with vibration!

Edited by Illinois (07/13/13 07:57 AM)


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Illinois]
      #5969370 - 07/13/13 05:52 PM

Hi Illinois,

Thank you for encouraging me to write. You have overcome huge obstacles to pursuit your goals and keep going at it. You have my admiration!


Hello Paul G,

Thank you for your kind words! When writing in English, it helps that I can use Google to check for the spelling of a word when I'm in doubt. But I still have a hard time thinking how I am going to phrase the ideas that I want to communicate. For that matter, I have a hard time doing it in my own language... But I'll try to follow Illinois' example!


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5969531 - 07/13/13 07:54 PM

Day-amn!

That is a seriously good-looking scope.

It dwarfs that G11.

One of these days I will need to head-to-head the 127ED from ES against the 152mm achromat from Astrotelescopes. ES makes some seriously nice looking, well-equipped refractor packages with nice color correction, decent aperture and great prices.

- Jim


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5971271 - 07/14/13 10:02 PM

Thank you for your comments!

When I was exploring the options for buying a 6-inch apochromatic refractor for lunar and planetary observing that was within my reach, the strongest contenders were the Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet [model ED152CF] and the Skywatcher Quantum 150ED Apo Triplet [model S11150]. In good theory, the Skywatcher has better glass quality (FPL-53) than the Explore Scientific (Hoya FCD1, the Equivalent of FPL-51) and it also includes a thread-on field flattener. The Explore Scientific on the other hand includes a Starlight Instruments 3" Feather Touch Focuser [model 3035].

I also gave very serious consideration to ordering a TEC 140mm f/7 ED Apo Triplet. Regrettably, when I asked my dealer about availability, he told me that I would be looking at a 9-12 month wait. If I didn't already own a good 5-inch apo (the TeleVue NP127is), I'd probably have placed an order for the TEC140 without thinking twice -I have dreamed of owning one since I read the S&T test report on the December 2003 issue. But when I was reading the specs of the current model, I was sad to discover that it no longer comes equipped with the original 3.5" Feather Touch Focuser, so it would not be exactly the same telescope that I dreamed about all these years. I don't want to imply for a second that the new TEC focuser is not up to specs, I'm sure it is as great as the telescope, it's just that it is not a Feather Touch.

Obsessions sometimes cloud or minds and we can no longer think clearly about what is best for us, but I believe that's in our human nature. In the end, I believe the fact that the Explore Scientific ED152CF actually includes the Starlight Instruments 3" Feather Touch Focuser, tipped the scales in his favor and that's the model that I purchased. But I guess I would have been just as happy with the Skywatcher Quantum 150ED. If I were into Astrophotography, I probably would have chosen the Skywatcher for the included field flattener and the better glass. But I am exclusively a visual observer and don't intend to do AP, so paying $1000 more for the Skywatcher did not seem like a particularly attractive idea at the time, especially considering that I was already over budget with the Explore Scientific ED152CF. Only time will tell if I made the right choice!

And since we are on the subject, I thought it was opportune to include a picture of the focuser:


Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor: Close-up of the included fully rotatable
3" Feather Touch Focuser (model 3035) with extension, Fine Focus Knob, and user supplied
TeleVue 2" Everbrite Diagonal.


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Illinois
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/18/06

Loc: near Dixon, Illinois USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5971796 - 07/15/13 08:18 AM

Good thing is that you don't buy TeleVue 127mm...expensive and length is short unless if you are serious astrophpotography. Your new toy is great and f8 is just right!

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Illinois]
      #5971922 - 07/15/13 09:52 AM

Hi Illinois,

I have owned the TeleVue NP127is from many years now and it's my favorite telescope. It's a very good all-purpose telescope and it's excellent for wide field deep-sky observing: My main interest.

The telescope that I didn't buy is the TEC140 because it is too close in aperture to the TeleVue NP127is that I have: 5 1/2 inches vs. 5 inches. And also because it was not in stock and it would take a long wait to get it.

Take good care!


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PhilCo126
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/05

Loc: coastline of Belgium
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5971968 - 07/15/13 10:30 AM

strange tube rings

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Illinois
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/18/06

Loc: near Dixon, Illinois USA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5973712 - 07/16/13 08:48 AM

Quote:

Hi Illinois,

I have owned the TeleVue NP127is from many years now and it's my favorite telescope. It's a very good all-purpose telescope and it's excellent for wide field deep-sky observing: My main interest.

The telescope that I didn't buy is the TEC140 because it is too close in aperture to the TeleVue NP127is that I have: 5 1/2 inches vs. 5 inches. And also because it was not in stock and it would take a long wait to get it.

Take good care!




I see and only half inch so forget it! I am sure that your new 152mm would be last for a long time! I like DSO, too!


I have 3 telescopes for now and should be for rest of my life! ES127 for general and use most of the time. 180mm Mak-Cass for planets and Moon. Mars, Juipter and Saturn! 16 inch for my main DSO! Planets is also good, too!


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Illinois]
      #5975336 - 07/17/13 12:47 AM

Hi Illinois,

I belive the ES127 apo will serve you well as a general use scope, as the TV NP127is has done for me! You have a good spread of telescopes from 5 inches up to 16 inches. Wow!!

Regards,


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: PhilCo126]
      #5975381 - 07/17/13 01:53 AM

Quote:

strange tube rings



I agree that they they are a bit different!

While making my shopping list for this telescope and based on the visual appearance from the pictures available on the net, I was initially considering replacing the original the rings for something more substantial. I was a concerned about the reliabilty of the latch system used for locking the rings.

But after actually receiving the telescope and closely inspecting the rings, I decided to postpone replacing them indefinitely. The rings are very lightweight and sufficiently rigid from my point of view to firmly hold the optical tube, at least for visual use -assuming of course that you keep the original handle in place or some kind of plate bridging the top of the rings.

About their durability, I still think the weak link could be their latching system. But, since I always load the telescope on the mount with the rings installed and balance the telescope using the sliding dovetail plate, I'll rarely need to open them -if ever, and for that reason I doubt I will subject them to much stress or abuse. The rings include some fine felt that adheres very well to the carbon fiber tube, so you could even leave the rings open and the tube would not slip, at least if the angle of the optical tube is not too steep. With the rings closed using their latch system, there is zero slippage of the optical tube at any angle.

I still might upgrade the mounting rings sometime down the road, but for now they are doing a good job for visual use.

Clear skies!


Explore Scientific 152 f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor: Back Side of Dual Split Mounting Rings
with Handle, Losmandy DUP Dovetail Plate, Losmandy VUP Dovetail Plate, Finder Base.


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contrailmaker
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 01/02/09

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5975949 - 07/17/13 12:58 PM

Thanks for sharing Castor. That is an excellent telescope. I have an AP152 that I use for for planetary/lunar and can honestly say it is the one telescope I will never sell. The views using a binocular viewer are fantastic. Hope you get some clear skies soon.

CM

Edited by contrailmaker (07/17/13 01:00 PM)


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5976118 - 07/17/13 02:26 PM

Incidentally, TEC rings also have a latching-type mechanism.

Regards,

Jim


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spongebob@55
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 12/26/11

Loc: Bergen Co. New Jersey
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #5976773 - 07/17/13 08:25 PM

Quote:

Quote:

strange tube rings



I agree that they they are a bit different!

While making my shopping list for this telescope and based on the visual appearance from the pictures available on the net, I was initially considering replacing the original the rings for something more substantial. I was a concerned about the reliabilty of the latch system used for locking the rings.

But after actually receiving the telescope and closely inspecting the rings, I decided to postpone replacing them indefinitely. The rings are very lightweight and sufficiently rigid from my point of view to firmly hold the optical tube, at least for visual use -assuming of course that you keep the original handle in place or some kind of plate bridging the top of the rings.

About their durability, I still think the weak link could be their latching system. But, since I always load the telescope on the mount with the rings installed and balance the telescope using the sliding dovetail plate, I'll rarely need to open them -if ever, and for that reason I doubt I will subject them to much stress or abuse. The rings include some fine felt that adheres very well to the carbon fiber tube, so you could even leave the rings open and the tube would not slip, at least if the angle of the optical tube is not too steep. With the rings closed using their latch system, there is zero slippage of the optical tube at any angle.

I still might upgrade the mounting rings sometime down the road, but for now they are doing a good job for visual use.

Clear skies!


Explore Scientific 152 f/8 ED Apo Triplet Refractor: Back Side of Dual Split Mounting Rings
with Handle, Losmandy DUP Dovetail Plate, Losmandy VUP Dovetail Plate, Finder Base.




When I had mine (for a short period), ES gave me the option for either type of ring.....the kind you have or the more traditional type (are they called shoulder bolts?). I hope your rings are good; mine were so poorly aligned and bent out of shape, I had to get them replaced.
How's the color correction?


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: contrailmaker]
      #5977159 - 07/18/13 01:21 AM

Quote:

Thanks for sharing Castor. That is an excellent telescope. I have an AP152 that I use for for planetary/lunar and can honestly say it is the one telescope I will never sell. The views using a binocular viewer are fantastic. Hope you get some clear skies soon.

CM



Hi Contrailmaker,

Thank you for reading my post and for your kind words!

Planetary/lunar observing is the reason that I bought this telescope and it's good to hear about other observers walking a similar path -using a 6-inch apo for planetary/lunar. Due to my back problems, a 6-inch is also the largest refractor that I can handle. By the way, a binocular viewer is in my future plans too.

Clear skies!


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Castor
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Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5977163 - 07/18/13 01:32 AM

Quote:

Incidentally, TEC rings also have a latching-type mechanism.

Regards,

Jim



You are right Mr. Burnell and thank you for reminding us! It's just that the TEC latching-type mechanism is much nicer.

I like TEC rings, or TEC telescopes for that matter!


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: spongebob@55]
      #5977178 - 07/18/13 01:54 AM

Quote:



When I had mine (for a short period), ES gave me the option for either type of ring.....the kind you have or the more traditional type (are they called shoulder bolts?). I hope your rings are good; mine were so poorly aligned and bent out of shape, I had to get them replaced.
How's the color correction?




Hi spongebob,

Yes, the rings that came with my telescope are good, thank you! That's why I decided to use them instead of replacing them as originally considered. I even took the trouble of drilling addtional holes on the Losmandy DUP Dovetail Mounting Plate to have a more solid connection for permanent use.

Regarding color correction, I have looked through the telescope only once due to bad weather, so it would be hard to evaluate optical quality based on those brief moments. I could detect some color fringing, but it's hard to tell if it's collimation related because the collimation screws arrived loose due to the bumpy trip. And I have plenty of bad weather ahead, so no prospects here!

Clear skies!


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Saied Mabrouk
member


Reged: 03/30/08

Loc: Longmont, Colorado
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #6098796 - 09/24/13 04:16 PM

Thanks Castor for the great reporting.
Since I have an old back, can you give us the weight of the OTA with everything on it including high quality eyepiece?
Regards.


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Saied Mabrouk]
      #6099626 - 09/25/13 12:31 AM Attachment (54 downloads)

Quote:

Thanks Castor for the great reporting.
Since I have an old back, can you give us the weight of the OTA with everything on it including high quality eyepiece?
Regards.



Gladly!

I weighted the telescope with all accessories (as pictured) on a digital scale. These are my results for the different configurations:

1- ED152CF OTA with Dew Shield, Mounting Rings, 14" DUP Dovetail Plate, 14" VUP Dovetail Plate, SV 9x50mm Finder, Starbeam Finder, 2" Everbrite Diagonal and 35mm Panoptic Eyepiece (2"). Weight: 31.6 lbs. (14.36 Kg.).

2- ED152CF OTA with Dew Shield, Mounting Rings, 14" DUP Dovetail Plate, 14" VUP Dovetail Plate, SV 9x50mm Finder, 2" Everbrite Diagonal and 35mm Panoptic Eyepiece (2"). Weight: 31.0 lbs. (14.09 Kg.).

3- ED152CF OTA with Dew Shield, Mounting Rings, 14" DUP Dovetail Plate, 14" VUP Dovetail Plate, SV 9x50mm Finder, 2" Everbrite Diagonal and 24mm Panoptic Eyepiece (1.25"). Weight: 29.8 lbs. (13.55 Kg.).

4- ED152CF OTA with Dew Shield, Mounting Rings, 14" DUP Dovetail Plate, 14" VUP Dovetail Plate, SV 9x50mm Finder, 2" Everbrite Diagonal w/o eyepiece. Weight: 29.4 lbs. (13.36 Kg.).

Please note that I replaced the original short/lightweight mounting plate (7.5") with a long/heavy dovetail plate (14", 2.4 lbs.) and also added a long dovetail plate on top (14", 1.25 lbs.). The Explore Scientific 8x50mm right-angle finderscope was replaced with a Stellarvue 9x50mm right-angle finderscope. The telescope with the original accessories is lighter than the one that I weighted.

The scope is large but manageable with the aid of the scope handle. However, mounting/dismounting the telescope on the standard mount saddle plate (Losmandy G-11) at the required height for optimal viewing (near the zenith) was always a stressful job. I replaced the standard (slide-in) Losmandy saddle plate with a tip-in saddle plate from Robin Casady (Dove12) that allows loading the scope from one side. Mounting the scope is much easier now!

The picture shows my configuration for visual observing with the Explore Scientific ED152CF.


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JimT
sage
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Reged: 08/13/05

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Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #6099919 - 09/25/13 08:37 AM

I can only hope to some day gather up enough coin to buy a OTA like that. It is a thing of beauty Castor. Thank you for sharing it with us.

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Wilsonman
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 01/30/07

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Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: JimT]
      #6100133 - 09/25/13 11:06 AM

Very impressive! I enjoyed looking at all the pictures and I would imagine most refractor lovers would love to have those instruments......and that mount, too!

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Saied Mabrouk
member


Reged: 03/30/08

Loc: Longmont, Colorado
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Wilsonman]
      #6100446 - 09/25/13 01:50 PM

Thanks Castor.
When you have a chance to better evaluate the color correction of the ES152mm CF, would you be able to compare its color correction to your Vixen ED100sf F/9 as this 4" OTA color correction is well known.
Regards.


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Wilsonman]
      #6101411 - 09/25/13 10:31 PM

Quote:

I can only hope to some day gather up enough coin to buy a OTA like that. It is a thing of beauty Castor. Thank you for sharing it with us.



Thank you JimT!

If having a medium size apo refractor is your goal, I'm sure you will find a way to make it happen. Trust me, I know because it took me over fifteen years to finally have the telescope of my dreams (the NP127is) from the days that I drooled over the pictures of the TeleVue Genesis refractor on the Astronomy magazines!

Quote:

Very impressive! I enjoyed looking at all the pictures and I would imagine most refractor lovers would love to have those instruments......and that mount, too!




Thank you Wilsonman!

Well, not everyone likes carbon fiber for their refractors due to the thermal characteristics, but at least they are presentable and lightweight. The G-11 Mount is a nice match for this scope, just don't take them to a star party with dark skies -they seem to have the ability to disappear from the radar, like the B-2 Stealth Bomber- the results could be catastrophic!

Regards,


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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Saied Mabrouk]
      #6101498 - 09/25/13 11:10 PM

Quote:

Thanks Castor.
When you have a chance to better evaluate the color correction of the ES152mm CF, would you be able to compare its color correction to your Vixen ED100sf F/9 as this 4" OTA color correction is well known.
Regards.



You are welcome Saied!

Unfortunately, the weather where I live does not favor visual Astronomy (maybe I could have a chance with Radio Astronomy, like in Arecibo, Puerto Rico) and the occasional partially clear night rarely coincides with a weekend, the only period when I have the time to set up this behemoth!

I have looked through this telescope only twice since I received it, and just for brief moments under less than ideal conditions! I guess the reason that I have multiple scopes is that I really enjoy looking at them. I just wish I could look through them more often.

I'm Sorry to let you down this time!

Regards,


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Kunama
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/22/12

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #6101535 - 09/25/13 11:33 PM

Excellent write up Castor, looks like a fantastic scope.

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Kunama]
      #6101619 - 09/26/13 01:15 AM

Quote:

Excellent write up Castor, looks like a fantastic scope.



Thank you Kunama!

Considering that English is not my native language, yours is the best compliment!

I believe the scope provides decent views for a refractor of this aperture (6 inches), but most likely not to the level of the premium grade apos. The only chance that I had to compare it with my other mid-size refractor (the 5-inch NP127is), I noticed a bit brighter images and a tad more detailed view on the ED152CF, but I also perceived that the whites at high magnification were a more pure white tone on the NP127is (which has very good color correction according to reviews and the comments of other owners).

I'm not very knowledgeable on the optics department and don't have sufficient command of the language, so I would prefer to leave evaluations on this subject to more experienced observers.

Thanks!


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t.r.
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: Castor]
      #6101910 - 09/26/13 09:35 AM

Castor, Sweet scope and an excellent mini review with all the pics and writeup...certainly helps potential buyers and the curious. Don't worry about your command of the English language...better than most natives here!

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Castor
sage


Reged: 03/26/08

Re: Explore Scientific 152mm f/8 ED Apo: Pictures!! new [Re: t.r.]
      #6103467 - 09/27/13 02:57 AM

Thank you t.r.!

That was the general idea, giving a pictorial tour of the telescope to people who might be interested, either casually or seriously.

Thank you for the compliments on the writing! I can't take all the credit because I had help from Google and Word to check my spelling!


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