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Equipment Discussions >> Classic Telescopes

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Joe Cepleur
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/18/10

Loc: Dark North Woods
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5657679 - 02/02/13 08:12 AM

Since 1998, this seller has sold 300 items on eBay. He is hardly an expert in antiques.

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mconsidine
member


Reged: 11/16/06

Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5657692 - 02/02/13 08:37 AM

I believe it is made by an amateur named Don Patch from Springfield in the early 1930s. He advertised a Garden Telescope in Sci. Amer. in 1933 and I believe it was assembled from spare parts. The mirror cell has casting defects that show up in later-run PGTs, but not in earlier numbers.
Matt
(owner : 2 original Porter garden telescopes)


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rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5657729 - 02/02/13 09:07 AM

I sent a question to him regarding the provenance or at least age of this scope...we'll see what he says--if anything.

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bremms
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 08/31/12

Loc: SC
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5657735 - 02/02/13 09:09 AM

Finally looked at the pictures on a larger monitor. Very suspect. Some things do look like they might be vintage most do not. Decent looking mirror coating? The brass/ bronze has that look of Indian made stuff to be honest. Jury is still out
but I say fake. RWP would have signed this one. I found the old S&T and it was a Garden Telescope. Unless someone comes forward that can vouch for this scopes authenticity, it is a fake.
If it is real, it would be worth 50x the asking price.


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hottr6
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 06/28/09

Loc: 7,500', Magdalena Mtns, NM
Re: is this real....deserves its own post. new [Re: starman876]
      #5657760 - 02/02/13 09:24 AM

Quote:

Looks like it was made in India.



In both India and China, there is a large cottage industry in replicating vintage and ancient scientific instruments. The largest market for these repros is the home market, which is a reason why we do not often see the repros for sale in the west.

There is often a lot of "maker's interpretation" when casting the repros, and so the repro may or may not be operable. E.g., because Zhang Heng's seismoscope was destroyed in the dark ages, it's internal mechanism was lost. Subsequent interpretations have differed wildly as to how it operated: The Chinese think it was a simple falling mass, the British a suspended pendulum, and the Americans, well they invoked the memory of Heath Robinson/Rube Goldberg and use a maze of cams, pulleys and levers that would be better suited to Ideal's "Mouse Trap Game" of the 1960s. Not a happy moment for American interpretive engineering.


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Ducky62
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/31/10

Loc: The ATL
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: mconsidine]
      #5657789 - 02/02/13 09:38 AM

Quote:

I believe it is made by an amateur named Don Patch from Springfield in the early 1930s. He advertised a Garden Telescope in Sci. Amer. in 1933 and I believe it was assembled from spare parts. The mirror cell has casting defects that show up in later-run PGTs, but not in earlier numbers.
Matt
(owner : 2 original Porter garden telescopes)




This fits perfectly with the seller's description. It's also consistent with why the telescope looks crudely right in many ways. Not as exciting or interesting as a prototype but still very cool and historic.


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starman876
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 04/28/08

Loc: VA
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Ducky62]
      #5657799 - 02/02/13 09:47 AM

Here is the persons last response

"

I understand.....I am being very honest with my description and all I know about it..That is how I always sell things.....There was a note inside the case that states the mirror was resilvered in 1931 by Louis A Turcotte a renowned collector of optical antiques...I added that to my description...I am certain it is from the 1920s era and I can not imagine that someone would have faked something like this back then....may have been made by one of his club members as well as a prototype of the Garden scope.......hopefully I will know more, as people see it...there is certainly some interest...we will see....

All I have to say is. really good looking mirror coating from 1930.


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Sean Cunneen
Let Me Think
*****

Reged: 08/01/07

Loc: Blue Island Illinois
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: starman876]
      #5657825 - 02/02/13 10:02 AM

I emailed the seller as well. I pointed out that Porters were 6" f4 mirrors and that his is a 4-1/4" looking, perhaps f9. He responded back that he had updated the listing and that what I had thought was brazing evidence was wax. So all that white junk in the screwheads/seams and running down the stem is wax residue. That explains the patina(or lack of). I asked him to shoot some photos of the case hinges and screw heads because no one makes something that comes apart and goes in a case like that just for import/export. The Don Patch connection sounds likely to me. The scope is better made than something some one might have cobbled together as an homage(this from someone who is building homages now!).

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rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: rmollise]
      #5657846 - 02/02/13 10:12 AM

His reply came promptly, and he said he had an email from a person who "owns an original" who "feels" that it was made by person or persons unknown in the Springfield group near the end of the era. Don't know about y'all, but this dude's email and his "feels" don't equate to a minimum of 2.5K for me.

Edited by rmollise (02/02/13 10:14 AM)


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Ducky62
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/31/10

Loc: The ATL
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: rmollise]
      #5657962 - 02/02/13 11:31 AM


A functional telescope after Porter's design, less the ornamental/artistic portion, made from leftover parts and molds from the famous Garden scope, by the guy who ran the screw comparator at Jones & Lamson Machine and was an original member of the Springfield Telescope Makers in charge of mirror silvering for the group* is very cool, historic and I'd say desirable.

It would not be a Porter Garden Telescope. As to what it is worth?, I think we'll know in about 9 days

(* assuming this is correct)


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pbealo
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 10/12/06

Loc: New Hampshire
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: Ducky62]
      #5657979 - 02/02/13 11:45 AM

I hope the Springfield Telescope Museum can pick this up for a reasonable price: something under $2.5G.

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tim53
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 12/17/04

Loc: Highland Park, CA
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: pbealo]
      #5658215 - 02/02/13 01:55 PM

I suppose it could be an old scope modeled loosely after porters. I still have my doubts though.

Tim


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mustgobigger
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/12/07

Loc: Michigan
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: tim53]
      #5658335 - 02/02/13 03:16 PM

Well,he dropped the price from
2500.00 to 500.00 opening bid.


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pbealo
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 10/12/06

Loc: New Hampshire
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: mustgobigger]
      #5658569 - 02/02/13 05:32 PM

Matt C. has spent a lot of time researching Garden Telescopes and Porter in general. And I have to agree with him that the mirror covers are certainly PGT pieces, so it is highly likely his analysis is correct: it's a later (1930s) amalgamation of PGT pieces and other stuff to make a working scope.

Peter B.


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Ducky62
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/31/10

Loc: The ATL
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: mustgobigger]
      #5658602 - 02/02/13 05:49 PM

If I was more flush at the moment I'd bid on his typewriter.
The seller's other items and completed sales were the second thing I looked at after googling to see if anyone in India was offering crude, partial copies of Porter Garden Telescopes in suitably period boxes

Those Ohio County atlases went kinda cheap too even allowing for condition.


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DrewFamily
journeyman


Reged: 01/31/08

Re: It's not a Porter. [Re: Ducky62]
      #5659088 - 02/02/13 11:05 PM

This one isn't gonna go cheap!

Quote:

Those Ohio County atlases went kinda cheap too even allowing for condition.




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kfiscus
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/09/12

Loc: Albert Lea, MN, USA
Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: DrewFamily]
      #5659171 - 02/03/13 12:09 AM

Thanks, all for the interesting read and links to the sales literature of the real thing. I always hope to see a garden scope show up on "Antiques Roadshow" or "American Pickers" and hope it is seen for its real value.

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BrooksObs
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/08/12

Re: It's not a Porter. new [Re: kfiscus]
      #5659978 - 02/03/13 01:16 PM

Ken, I concur that it would prove most interesting and enlightening to see a Porter Garden Scope assigned a true value by a competent appraiser. As it is, I think that many individuals' guesstimates, or off the cuff opinions of value today, are wildly extravagant and unrealistic. I can certainly recall a time when Porter scopes, as rare as they were, still commanded only some high hundreds of dollars and even within maybe the last dozen years I've seen one or two available for well under $10K. This fact suggests to me that "values" today for these or any supposed historic instruments are being set only by people with considerably more money than common sense and in no way reflect any sort of true antique/historic value to the item.

Personally, I would regard the instrument here in question more of an oddity than anthing truly of historical significance, as it lacks nearly all of the artistic craftsmanship of a true Porter scope, or the name, as well as being obviously functionally very crude and unsophisticated.

BrooksObs

Edited by BrooksObs (02/03/13 01:29 PM)


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iluxo
sage


Reged: 09/23/08

Simple... supply & demand... new [Re: BrooksObs]
      #5660908 - 02/03/13 11:31 PM

I'm sure there are far more buyers in the US for these than PGT's to go round, even as a garden ornament, and the kind of buyers for whom price is a distant consideration after "I want...".

In my country full of impoverished philistines, the PGT's would barely fetch scrap metal prices.


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Dave M
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 08/03/04

Loc: Ohio
Re: Simple... supply & demand... new [Re: iluxo]
      #5674281 - 02/11/13 03:44 PM

Only an hr to go, be interesting to see how much it sells for.

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