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Equipment Discussions >> Refractors

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Red Shift
super member


Reged: 11/09/11

Loc: Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA
EXPLORE SCIENTIFIC 102MM F/7 ED APOCHROMATIC TRIPL
      #5552601 - 12/03/12 06:57 PM

EXPLORE SCIENTIFIC 102MM F/7 ED APOCHROMATIC TRIPLET REFRACTOR

Does anyone have one of these?

If you do, can you advise how you like it?

What are it's strengths?

What are it's weaknesses?

Do you use it for visual observations and/or astrophotography?

Would you buy it again?


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kevint1
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 04/19/11

Loc: West Michigan
Re: EXPLORE SCIENTIFIC 102MM F/7 ED APOCHROMATIC TRIPL new [Re: Red Shift]
      #5552948 - 12/03/12 10:03 PM

Here are my comments on the white tube version, not the new CF one.

Likes:
- Build quality, it is a solid, substantial scope.
- Diagonal, rings and finder are included with the scope.
- Carrying case is industrial strength.
- Optical quality. Nice pinpoint little stars and round disks.
- Compact size, portability, quick assembly and cool down. I take it to a dark site a lot.
- Correct image illuminated finder scope, easy to align.
- The sides of the diagonal are removable, making it easy to clean the mirror
- Carrying handle on top of rings
- Collimation was spot on when I received it and still is.
- The stock focuser holds my ES 24mm 82 deg, 34mm 68 deg and 14mm 100 deg eyepieces without slipping when pointing near the zenith.
- The lens cap screws on, so it doesn't fall off like slip on caps do sometimes.
- Support from ES is excellent. I had one issue - the focuser movement was rough when turning the large knobs. ES knew what the problem was and offered to have the scope picked up and returned to them so they could replace the focuser. I had them send me another focuser instead. When I received the new one, I called ES and they talked me through replacing the old one. I received a call from them a few days later making sure the new one was working properly. They also paid for the return of the old one.

Dislikes
None

Annoyances
- The dew shield doesn't retract, you need to remove it and slide it over the tube backwards to store it. Not really a problem once I got used to the routine.
- The dust cap must be screwed on. You need to pay attention when putting it on in the dark to make sure you don't cross thread it or even touch the lens. I have never had either occur.
- The finder illuminator is a little too bright at the lowest level. Darkening the LED would probably solve this, but I haven't gotten around to it.
- The stock focuser is probably the weakest link. It works OK, but is not as smooth as I wanted. I ended up replacing it with a Moonlite, which is a lot smoother and eliminated most vibrations when focusing.

I use it for visual only, but here is a link to some photos taken with an ES102.

http://explorescientific.wordpress.com/category/astrophotography

I've owned the scope for almost two years and have been very happy with it. For what I paid at the time I think it is a good value. If I was going to buy my first refractor now, I would look at something a little bigger, around 120mm. But if my budget was in the range of the ES 102, then yes, I would buy it again.


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Thomas Karpf
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 02/09/09

Loc: Newington, CT
Re: EXPLORE SCIENTIFIC 102MM F/7 ED APOCHROMATIC TRIPL new [Re: kevint1]
      #5553674 - 12/04/12 10:10 AM

Quote:

Here are my comments on the white tube version, not the new CF one.

Annoyances
- The dew shield doesn't retract, you need to remove it and slide it over the tube backwards to store it. Not really a problem once I got used to the routine.
- The dust cap must be screwed on. You need to pay attention when putting it on in the dark to make sure you don't cross thread it or even touch the lens. I have never had either occur.





Just checking, but do you screw on the dust cap after reversing the dew shield?


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EdTheEdge
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 04/10/09

Loc: Lomita, CA
Re: EXPLORE SCIENTIFIC 102MM F/7 ED APOCHROMATIC TRIPL new [Re: Thomas Karpf]
      #5553722 - 12/04/12 10:40 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Here are my comments on the white tube version, not the new CF one.

Annoyances
- The dew shield doesn't retract, you need to remove it and slide it over the tube backwards to store it. Not really a problem once I got used to the routine.
- The dust cap must be screwed on. You need to pay attention when putting it on in the dark to make sure you don't cross thread it or even touch the lens. I have never had either occur.





Just checking, but do you screw on the dust cap after reversing the dew shield?




Yes, for storage.


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