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Equipment Discussions >> Classic Telescopes

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clintwhitman
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Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments
      #5659362 - 02/03/13 04:46 AM Attachment (61 downloads)

Well we kinda hijacked the Ebay thread taking about this so I though it might work in a post.
Being associated this this great hobby for many years and after owning and using telescopes from just about every design type there have been candidates of all the major design types that have given me "The Wow factor Moments" You know you open the box or walked into that garage, or your friend invited you over to see his latest find and out popped a telescope that made your jaw drop and you just said WOW!!! Tell the Story, Post that Photo, Share the Wow,

I have had some great ones as some of you have seen the posts.
(aveman


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clintwhitman
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5659367 - 02/03/13 05:00 AM Attachment (53 downloads)

My greatest WOW MOMENT to date was a few years ago when a friend from this group Lew Chilton called me at home and said " Clint you have been invited to a special Star party in north holly wood by a guy named John Pons" I will never in my lifetime forget Debbie and I driving down a side street in North Holly Wood CA and looking ahead and on the left and seeing Johns 10" F15 Zeiss and the 1956 Goto Kogaku Telescopes set up in the driveway! This was really a life changing event for me. After my jaw dropped, it stayed that way the entire evening. I really needed a Jaw Sling by 9 pm that night!

Here is a link to perhaps the greatest WOW EVER.
FULL MOON STAR PARTY


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Astrojensen
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Loc: Bornholm, Denmark
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5659377 - 02/03/13 05:27 AM

My WOW! moment was kind of subtle, but when I first saw the 85mm f/19 Zeiss A apochromat in my friend's observatory, repainted, flaking, dirty, corroded, standing folorn and almost forgotten in a corner, I can't say it was a WOW! moment, but somehow, I knew I stood in front of something really special and because of that, the memory is precious to me and I recall it vividly.

Later, during a conversation on the phone, I mentioned that it was the kind of scope I would like to own. He gave it to me, on the condition that I had to transport it home myself. I took him on his word and carried it home on my back, by foot, train, ferry and bus. Then I restored it and this is how it looks now:





The lens is truly special. It shows no visual color and will take the highest magnifications before breakdown. I've used it for solar projection with 800x magnification. 200x - 300x hardly breaks a sweat. It will resolve M13 right across the core with an 8mm Ethos like you'll never believe.


Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark

Edited by Astrojensen (02/03/13 05:28 AM)


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strdst
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Astrojensen]
      #5659387 - 02/03/13 05:48 AM

Thomas,

Your WOW moment becomes mine. Thanks!


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bob midiri
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5659430 - 02/03/13 07:06 AM Attachment (40 downloads)

Great idea Clint. Well my first WOW factor was about 10 years ago while observing Saturn one rare steady night with my homemade 16"F6.5 dob. The steady atmosphere was allowing me IIRC to use some very high powers that we just normally don't get the chance to use in mid-atlantic. I remember climbing up the ladder and then just looking at Saturn around 500 power and seeing all this granulation in the rings, it was incredible I never again saw that... My second "WOW" factor was with my Classic C14, observing Jupiter one night under steady skies, I couldn't believe what I was seeing, the image was so detailed and seeing shades of colors in the belt areas, looked like a Hubble picture....I need to get these scopes to some steadier skies more often. Bob

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bremms
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bob midiri]
      #5659469 - 02/03/13 07:44 AM

My best one was with my now gone 10" f6. For months the seeing was terrible when I got the mirror. I could never seem to get it to reach equilibrium. One evening I took it to my Dads to do some good deep sky.
Left the scope out covered to get up at 4:30 to look at Jupiter and Saturn.
Holy Crud! was my first statement. It was slightly foggy but the sky was a10/10 for seeing. Shadings in the cloud belts, unbelievable detail and contrast. That's the first time I realized how good the mirror was.

Edited by bremms (02/03/13 08:19 AM)


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sgorton99
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bob midiri]
      #5659490 - 02/03/13 08:01 AM Attachment (45 downloads)

My "WOW" was when my wife and I met up with Harald in Amsterdam. Clint had suggested in a thread if anyone is in Amsterdam, they look Harald up to see his classic scopes.

After some communication with Harald, we were all set. He and his elderly father met us at a restaurant near his dad's retirement residence and treated us to a very nice meal. Harald then played the piano for the patrons as he is a well know jazz pianist. He also loaned us a phone and gave us 2 train tickets to come see him and his girlfriend in a town about 30 miles away. There was an outdoor art tour in that town that day, and Harald had two bicycles for my wife and I to use.

Of course this is about classic telescopes, so attached is a picture of Harald and I and one of his classic Zeiss telescopes. My wife still kids about me meeting guys online in Amsterdam...


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bendab
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5659495 - 02/03/13 08:16 AM

Clint,
How in the world can assemble a scope like this without using a crane looks even to big just for two guy's to handle ?


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Eric P
sage
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bendab]
      #5659530 - 02/03/13 08:52 AM

Quote:

Clint,
How in the world can assemble a scope like this without using a crane looks even to big just for two guy's to handle ?




That's what I want to know


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Peter B
super member


Reged: 04/17/07

Loc: Parker, Colorado
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Eric P]
      #5659584 - 02/03/13 09:31 AM

My classic wow factor was in meeting a classic individual: Clyde Tombaugh! I went to college at New Mexico State Univ. where he was a visiting/guest professor. I was out riding my bike one day and saw this old and bent over gentleman with a really big telescope. He invited me over to see it and his wife brought out the lemonade. Had a nice visit with the two of them. Not a classic scope, but a classic nevertheless! I also met Walter H. Haas of A.L.P.O. fame in Las Cruces too!

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starman876
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Reged: 04/28/08

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Peter B]
      #5659645 - 02/03/13 10:02 AM Attachment (34 downloads)

Mt first was in 1957 and watching Sputnik going overhead. That was the first time I started looking at the stars with interest. Then my neighbors 8" newtionian and seeing Jupiter for the first time That was back in the 50's when light pollution was not so bad yet. The next wow was when I set up my 5" F12 AP and looked around in light polluted skies. Up until then I had a Meade 10" SCT that just could not deliver. The next wow came when I set up the 6" F8 AP. My last wow was when i started using my 12.5" portaball with the Zambutti mirror. After one night of good seeing with that mirror I sold the new C14 I had which had some of the best optics in any SCT I have ever seen. Still kept the Orange C14 for sentimental reasons. Hope that is not that many wows? but every scope provided a new wow I was not expecting.

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actionhac
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: starman876]
      #5659762 - 02/03/13 11:19 AM Attachment (43 downloads)

I'd been having trouble achieving a sharp focus with this ebay lens and like a good monkey I started fiddling with tools and sticks and scissors and after much scientific guessing I hit the correct spacing and distinctly remember a WOW! and a sore jaw!
Here it is in my "laboratory" on that evening:


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droid
rocketman
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Reged: 08/29/04

Loc: Conneaut, Ohio
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: actionhac]
      #5659792 - 02/03/13 11:32 AM

Mine occured at the Horstmans, I was there for a star party and Scott opened up the 12/12.5? inch f8/10? reflector, I got to the ep, and Jupiter just was glorious, liked I never seen before,if anyone had been standing under the ladder they would have needed a rain coat.
Alas others wanted to look too, so I got down.But went back when ever I could.
The image is still burned into my mind.I still wanted one of my own, until last year when I picked up my 16 inch f/4.5...I have high hopes it will recreate that moment.


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droid
rocketman
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Reged: 08/29/04

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: actionhac]
      #5659801 - 02/03/13 11:34 AM

Dan; what size and focal length is that, it sure is pretty to look at.

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droid
rocketman
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Reged: 08/29/04

Loc: Conneaut, Ohio
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bendab]
      #5659805 - 02/03/13 11:36 AM

Quote:

Clint,
How in the world can assemble a scope like this without using a crane looks even to big just for two guy's to handle ?




Why you think they call him the cave man??? obviously he grunts, plops it on his shoulder


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clintwhitman
Caveman
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Reged: 01/01/07

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Astrojensen]
      #5659854 - 02/03/13 12:01 PM

Thomas, Great story 85mm Zeiss Awesome!! Dan has given me a few WOW Zeiss moments.

Bob and Mark, I hadn't thought at all of any of the viewing WOW Moments, these are really what its all about! To bad these 10 seeing moments are not within our control. All we can do is show up and hope nature provides a night like this once in a while. Great photo Mr Bob.

Steve, Harold is one in a million and I totally love the fact you went to see our good friend. WOW! One day Debbie and I will get over there.

Bruce and Eric, Mr John Pons is 74 or so and he puts that thing together completely by himself. He has let me help him one time with the OTA and other than that he swears he assembles this giant on his own. Another WOW moment to see that.

Peter, Meeting man that wrote the book,Clyde Tombaugh. Always great moments!

Johann you have a million great moments,

Robert don't you just love it when, just when you think it all a total loss, your at the end of your rope and you try the "last Thing" and it works! These are always the best of the best moments. If you get your Perfect 6" Refractor to be Perfect That's a WOW Moment.

Great posts you guys!!


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clintwhitman
Caveman
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Reged: 01/01/07

Loc: CALI SoEasyACavemanCanSlewIt
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: droid]
      #5659897 - 02/03/13 12:30 PM Attachment (52 downloads)

Andy,
Nature will one day provide the seeing and your reflector will blow your mind, provided you show up at the eyepiece.

The Pearl has held over 700 power on four different nights. Two at Pinos and Two in our observatory. I am suspicionin that there are way more 10 plus nights at Pinos than in my back yard.

Another WOW moment: I spent 60 to 100 hours restoring my 1965 Cave 10" F8, I had it finished for about a month and was having some really great sessions with her. John Pons had another star party so I loaded up the Cave and set it up under his Zeiss thinking it would get Blown away by the monster refractor and know one would even want a look in it.

This was not you typical star party. Ed Grisom, Edward Zucardi, Lewis Chilton and John Pons were there. Around LA these are the best known telescope men around and they were all friends with Tom Cave and the Beck Brothers. After an hour of darkness Ed Zucardi was over looking through the Cave and he stated yelling for John Pons to come over. John and Ed were pretty much glued to the eyepiece for 30 minutes viewing Jupiter. They both started using words like perfect mirror one in a million, don't ever sell this mirror, it was the best of the best and needed to be installed in a optimized OTA..
After pouring my Heart into the restoration of this old Classic Telescope, and not really knowing if it was worth all that time. It was a huge WOW moment to have these particular telescope men tell me this was a one in a million telescope..
Once again I have to Thank our friend Lew Chilton for the photo. He captured the moment when John first looked in the Cave


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starman876
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5660010 - 02/03/13 01:32 PM

If it were not for all the new wows we keep seeing we would not stay in this hobby for long. We search the heavens for that new wow every night we observe always hoping to see that object like we have never seen it before.

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clintwhitman
Caveman
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Reged: 01/01/07

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: starman876]
      #5661055 - 02/04/13 01:41 AM

Exactly!

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Jim Curry
Pooh-Bah
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Reged: 10/29/07

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5662298 - 02/04/13 06:52 PM

Clint:
It's been several years since I looked at that Full Moon thread. Wow, thanks for bringing that up again. That should be in its own "Best of the Best" thread.

Jim


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gerfmon
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5662322 - 02/04/13 07:09 PM

It's the early 1980's. I'm a young adult with a decent job. At a local astronomy shop I buy a pair of Swift 11x80 astronomical binoculars. From my light polluted back yard the views were nice, but not as nice as what I had expected from these handheld "light buckets".

So a trip to the great dark, the eastern plains of Colorado was in store. I drove about 75 miles east of the Front Range light pollution. I found a spot on a back road. It was dark, really dark. The kind of dark where you still can't see your own hand after 10 minutes. And I think the stars shown brighter than I'd every seen. I swept the October night sky with the big binoculars over the Milky Way, the star numbers were beyond comprehension. Then I swept over to the west. HOLY COW, there it was, M31, Andromeda..not a faint fuzzy as I would have expected. I could see the whole galaxy! The bright core, the spiral arms, even the dust lanes! Like the photos I'd seen in Sky & Telescope! I began to wonder if someone had slipped some acid into my soda pop, that this was all a big hallucination. But it wasn't. There was M31 in all it's glory, another galaxy almost 3 million light years away. I laid there in the dark and soaked up the view for a good hour. Anyway, that was probably the biggest WOW moment of my life (astronomy wise). And even though the Swift binoculars were new then, I think they could be classified as "classics" 30+ years later. And I still have that same pair in the closet. I still dig them out now and again, but the views from my backyard can't come close to comparing to what I saw out in the "Great Dark"


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Datapanic
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: gerfmon]
      #5662743 - 02/05/13 12:18 AM

My Classic Wow Factor was when the 1975 8" f/7 Lightweight Deluxe arrived. I had waited 13 long weeks from ordering it until it was delivered. It was shipped via United Freight and I guess my Dad took off from work and accepted delivery of it and put the crate and boxes downstairs of our split-level house. That day, when I came home later than normal, my two sisters were hiding downstairs around the corner to see what I would do when I saw it. I didn't know they were there. I came home, and looked downstairs and saw the crate with the OTA inside it - with a big surprise and a 'Yahoo!' I jumped all the steps down and said stuff like 'Wow', 'Boss', 'Oh Yeah' and lots of other things; my sisters laughed at me, I didn't care!

I uncrated and unpacked it that afternoon, following the awful assembly directions provided, and I still remember that Parks Tube smell... I don't remember if it was clear that night or not, but I had several Wow Moments with it from then on and still do. I had moved up from a 60mm refractor to an 8" reflector and I think that scope (which I still have) started my affection towards the hobby like nothing else would have before.


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mustgobigger
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Datapanic]
      #5662971 - 02/05/13 07:09 AM

mine was first view of saturn with the 6" AP
superplanetary ...cranking it up to over 600 x
and thinking i need to buy some higher power eyepieces.
etched in my mind forever.


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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: mustgobigger]
      #5663333 - 02/05/13 10:48 AM

Mine was my first view of Saturn with my first telescope (60mm). My second would have to be my first views through my home built (and home ground and figured mirror) 6 inch F4.5 rich field reflector of the Scutum Star Cloud a year and a half later. I was so amazed for see all those stars and nebulosity through something I had made my self.

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GeneT
Ely Kid
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5664320 - 02/05/13 09:09 PM

My greatest WOW moment was the first time I looked through a telescope. It was 1957, in Ely, Nevada. A friend's father invited me to drive with them to Ruth, Nevada, about 7 miles away. A doctor had just received a 3.5 inch Questar. The Moon was about half. The doctor aimed it in the eyepiece. It was just a smooth, white globe. No details. We all thought that was how the moon was to look. I saw a small cylinder sticking up. I turned it--and the moon snapped into focus, revealing craters, mountains and so on. It was stunning. The others were also stunned. That view stayed with me the rest of my life, and motivated me to get into the greatest hobby on earth. ( )

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Dan /schechter
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/21/06

Loc: Long Beach, Calif.
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: GeneT]
      #5664606 - 02/06/13 02:46 AM

Mine was in 1991 when I just received my 6" AP Starfire EDT and pointed at Saturn. I can close my eyes and see it and feel that "WOW" feeling.
Dan


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clintwhitman
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Dan /schechter]
      #5664833 - 02/06/13 09:08 AM Attachment (22 downloads)

WOW Really? THE PAWN STARS ZEISS PICKUP DAN AND I WERE WOWED

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Edward E
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 03/26/06

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5664911 - 02/06/13 10:11 AM

My WOW factor was my first look through a telescope. I was 8, living in Atlanta, GA, mid 70s, my dad took me to Fernbank Science Center to look at Saturn...through a 36" telescope! I was already awed by the dome, then the size of the scope but the view! Even my dad was impressed. I still feel the feeling 40 years past.

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astro140
super member


Reged: 01/28/08

Loc: Mayhill, New Mexico
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: mustgobigger]
      #5665343 - 02/06/13 02:05 PM Attachment (20 downloads)

Quote:

mine was first view of saturn with the 6" AP
superplanetary ...cranking it up to over 600 x
and thinking i need to buy some higher power eyepieces.
etched in my mind forever.





Hi Brian,
My wow memory was similar using my AP 152 f/12 superplanetary refractor on Saturn.
Steve
NM


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Joe Cepleur
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/18/10

Loc: Dark North Woods
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: astro140]
      #5666012 - 02/06/13 09:07 PM

Four "Wow!" moments transformed me:

Seeing stars for the first time in third grade, upon getting my first prescription glasses;

Seeing the Milky Way thirty-five years later, after moving to dark skies;

Finding and seeing Saturn's rings for the first time, after buying my first good scope (the 60mm Jason 313 Towa); and,

Marveling at a member of my club blithely pointing a 16" f/4.5 Newt on GEM at anything anyone requested. He knew exactly where everything was. I wanted to learn to do that.


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Dan /schechter
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/21/06

Loc: Long Beach, Calif.
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5666080 - 02/06/13 09:44 PM

Hey Clint,
The visit to Pawn Stars certainly was a WOW experience for both of us. Having them open the door for us while about one hundred people stood in line to get was icing on the cake as was the side visit with Ed Beyers on the way home.

Cheers,
Dan


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dgreyson
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 11/06/12

Loc: South Carolina
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Jim Curry]
      #5666181 - 02/06/13 10:41 PM

My Classic Telescope wow moment was when my classic 10" newtonian wasnt a classic yet. Saturn was up, the air was clear and still, the stars were intensely bright, and I had just realized my wooden English yoke mount was way too heavy to drag out of the shed for first light.

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mikey cee
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Reged: 01/18/07

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Dan /schechter]
      #5666190 - 02/06/13 10:47 PM

Hey Dan, who is that wearing the Groucho Marx mask? Mike

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Dan /schechter
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/21/06

Loc: Long Beach, Calif.
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: mikey cee]
      #5666226 - 02/06/13 11:13 PM

Hi Mike,
Your guess is as good as mine.
Cheers,
Dan


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clintwhitman
Caveman
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Reged: 01/01/07

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: mikey cee]
      #5666465 - 02/07/13 05:25 AM

SAY THE SECRET WORD AND WIN $50!!!
Mike only you would say I look weird while standing next to the oldman!!


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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5666513 - 02/07/13 06:22 AM

My classic WOW moment was first light and my first view of the Pleiades (M45) with my brand new Tasco 6TE-5 refractor on Dec 26, 1967. I will always remember that night.

Rich (RLTYS)


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bremms
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/31/12

Loc: SC
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5666542 - 02/07/13 07:05 AM

Plieades is really such a beautiful object. Never gets old. It was the second thing my "new" D&G saw last night and it was Sooo nice

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Joe Cepleur
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/18/10

Loc: Dark North Woods
Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5666695 - 02/07/13 09:27 AM

How could I have omitted this? I had my Pleiades moments, too. The monents were classic, but the scope was not.

For a midlife birthday, I had received my first astronomical telescope (if it counts as such), a 4" Celestron FirstScope f/4 tabletop Dob. With its short tube and lack of finder, it was hard to point. There was construction in my yard, so I climbed up onto a bulldozer. With the scope on the hood, I could stand lower on the treads to better sight skyward. Somehow, I found the Pleiades, and "Wow!"

Two years later, I took that scope to a public star party. From the trunk of the car, it gave a young man his "Wow!" moment. Still recall his face in the dark, stunned and awed.


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Joe Cepleur
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/18/10

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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #5666724 - 02/07/13 09:49 AM

Here's a classic moment with the 16" f/4.5 Newt in our club's dome: Saturn was boiling in the eyepiece. I was still awed, because I had never seen it so big. To compensate for the bad seeing, we stopped it down to a 6" f/12 off-axis, and "Wow!" It popped into superb clarity.

A few years later, our club's optician assembled one working Newt from two 8" long focus classics undergoing restoration, a Trecker and, I think, a Southern Pacific Instruments. The scope itself was stunningly long, evocative of a rare view; and, surely enough, the view of Saturn the best anyone had ever seen.

So many classic moments! Yes; they keep us going, always seeking the next.


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starman876
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #5666740 - 02/07/13 09:58 AM

One WOW moment was when I had an old Coulter 13.1" Dob

One night I aimed at the Pleiades and there in that wonderdul starfield was also the blue gas around the stars that you normally only see in pictures. I had never seen it like that visually. I did go WOW over and over again. This was from light polutted Washington DC skies.


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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #5666744 - 02/07/13 09:59 AM Attachment (31 downloads)

Every time I look at this little pretty. This morning for instance when I was sitting in the dining room having breakfast. My eyes glanced toward the corner of the room and WOW

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Jeff B
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5666851 - 02/07/13 10:58 AM

Quote:

Every time I look at this little pretty. This morning for instance when I was sitting in the dining room having breakfast. My eyes glanced toward the corner of the room and WOW




Nice scopes Terra.

So, how did you get them to stick to the wall like that?


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tim53
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: starman876]
      #5666884 - 02/07/13 11:14 AM

I've got a number of classic moments. This first story doesn't involve a scope or even a pair of binoculars, though. But it probably was the turning point when I decided I "needed" a real telescope.

I was in the Rockies for a mountaineering school in summer, 1971. We were camped near the base of Mt Columbia at just under 12,000'. I think we'd spent about a week there because the purpose was to climb Mt Columbia under full moonlight, starting from camp at midnight so we could watch the sunrise.

The sunrise was pretty darn spectacular in it's own right, but that's not the wow moment I'm referring to. I can't remember whether it was the week before or the week after that we'd spent at that campsite. Probably week before, which would mean that we stayed up pretty late telling stories around the campfire at night. ...because on this particular night when I sashayed off into the wilderland to talk to a man about a dog, the moon was gone and it was really dark. Still, I didn't notice until I found my designated shrub and turned off my flashlight, so as not to advertise my location to the rest of the camp (who wouldn't have given me a moment of peace, i'm sure!).

Anyway, after my eyes adapted to the dark, I spent several minutes looking up into the sky. It was really dark. Looking around me, I couldn't see any detail at all - just slightly brighter dark blobs where rocks and bare soil were between shrubs. The most memorable sky event I saw was a double meteor. I don't think I've ever seen one since, either. Literally, two meteors impacting the atmosphere at the same time, maybe half a moon-diameter apart and streaking parallel lines across the sky.

When walking back to camp, I tried doing it without using the flashlight. I made it, but it was pretty comical. Since I couldn't tell rocks from bare dirt, I couldn't see how far away they were, so I stumbled a lot. But I took it slow and got back with nothing but starlight as a guide.

I've never seen the night sky that dark since, even while visiting the Rockies and other high-altitude localities. There's too much *BLEEP* in the atmosphere what with jet exhaust and other particulates.

I ordered my Optical Craftsmen 8" Discoverer from Dick Nelson 4 months later.

-Tim.


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bremms
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: tim53]
      #5667068 - 02/07/13 01:13 PM

That is a great story. +1
Terra, is that your yet unused 140? Hope you get first light soon. Love the way it looks with the Unihex


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bremms
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bremms]
      #5667075 - 02/07/13 01:16 PM

That's not a 140.. sorry. It's a 128? Dont know too much about them Uneetrons.. but the 140 is alt az I think

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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: bremms]
      #5667540 - 02/07/13 05:32 PM

We had sun today finally. Clear and warm all day. I spent much of the afternoon outside doing white light and h-alpha solar, mostly h-alpha, using vintage scopes (my 60 mm Monolux and the 76mm Sears. Didn't get any of the Unitrons out under the sun today, don't have a way yet to use my h-alpha gear or white light wedges with them yet.
Yup, that's the 128 in the photo, the 140 is bigger and alt-az and residing in another corner of the room.
We have our club meeting tonite but if I get a chance when I get home, the 128 will be trained on Jup.

Terra


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starman876
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5667635 - 02/07/13 06:36 PM

Now you do know that if you try real hard you will get what you need

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Bonco
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: starman876]
      #5667839 - 02/07/13 08:50 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

Model 128

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Bonco
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Bonco]
      #5667840 - 02/07/13 08:51 PM Attachment (15 downloads)

Model 142

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bremms
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Bonco]
      #5667964 - 02/07/13 10:16 PM

I haven't looked at H Alpha gear in ages. I remember the Daystar filters that were heated and needed an F30 light cone.
WE had our local meeting this evening. I'm giving the talk next month. Lot of work to do..


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Joe Cepleur
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Bonco]
      #5668335 - 02/08/13 04:24 AM

Quote:

Model 128




What's the silver pipe? A sight tube used as a finder?


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mustgobigger
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #5668403 - 02/08/13 07:16 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Model 128




What's the silver pipe? A sight tube used as a finder?




its a rod for solar projection screens.


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Joe Cepleur
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: mustgobigger]
      #5668497 - 02/08/13 08:52 AM

Quote:

its a rod for solar projection screens




!!!!!

Seemed kinda long and floppy to point reliably....


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careysub
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5668633 - 02/08/13 10:03 AM

A memorable moment for me was in 1982, attending a star party at China Lake, California in the high desert, and seeing the Whirlpool Galaxy through a newly built Dobsonian (the first I had ever seen) with a 17.5" Coulter mirror.

It was a magical sight.

I said to myself right then - I've got to get me one of those someday!

But then graduate school, career and kids intervened, and I was out of the hobby until a few years ago. I currently am using my club's 22" Dobsonian for deep-sky but I have my 18" mirror (much better than the Coulter) with light-weight Dob designs under development.


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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #5668640 - 02/08/13 10:10 AM

By the late 60s, early 70s the solar projection kit was offered as an optional accessory and the brackets were on tube rings on the 128 (eq). Early to mid1960s used brackets (two) that were similar to those on the 140/142 that were fit into pre-drilled holes in the ota. Prior to that there was a single bracket to hold the rod. This bracket was similar to a finder bracket in that it had two rings at either end of a single bar-foot that attached to the tube. Rods also varied over time solid bar type rods to hollow aluminum pipe and eventually to what was 1/2 inch aluminum electrical conduit stock near the end.

The Unihex was also an option, you could either have that or a star diagonal and a porro prism. Another variable over time was a aperture stop to be used with the sun filter. That was not part of earlier offerings. The objective cell has also differed over the years from being identical in 114 and 128 to the 128 as in Bill's picture being made along the same lines as the 3 inch photo equatorial with the provision for a counter balance. That is not often seen as a counter balance is really not necessary on a scope of that length/weight due to the fact that heavier accessories, namely the camera would rarely be used with a 60 mm scope. Two wheel vs one wheel focusers are also seen on different iterations of the 128.

The one distinguishing feature is that the 114 was always alt-az and the 128 was always eq., everything else at times was the same (other than variations in eyepieces provided). Even the equatorial mount evolved over time. The earliest 128 eps have no setting circles, which distinguished the 128 eq mount from all others, but this also changed by the late 60s. Size was also a distinguishing factor, but the 128 and the 142 were much closer in size (the mounts) than the 142 and the 152 which was much larger.


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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5668666 - 02/08/13 10:29 AM

Had one last night, a couple actually. After our meeting a half dozen or so of us went up and did a couple,of hours viewing with this puppy:

http://www.cincinnatiobservatory.org/Resources/080813_observatory-44.jpg

It's an 1843, 11 inch, F18 Merz refractor. Jupiter was amazing. The four Gallilean moons were perfect disks and we watched one reach Jupiters limb and then recede beneath it. That was a WOW. Jupiter itself with its bands, festoons, and faint red spot left of center was a wow. But I have never seen an occultation of one of Jupiters moons by Jupiter in such detail.

The Great Nebula in Orion was one of the best views I have ever seen. The contrast was excellent and you could see the tendrils and dark patches like they were in a photo.

WOW! I love classic scopes and I love long refractors!


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mustgobigger
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5668890 - 02/08/13 12:19 PM

Great Terra...One Day I need To visit A Observatory.
i Dod Have Some Great Views through a 32" Dob a Couple Years Back.


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Bill Friend
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5669002 - 02/08/13 01:11 PM

Terra,

Definitely a WOW moment if there ever was one.

Speaking of classics... I noticed the in-transit Telementor in your sig. Please let us know how it compares to your other 60s!

Cheers,
Bill


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clintwhitman
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5670261 - 02/09/13 08:08 AM

Quote:

By the late 60s, early 70s the solar projection kit was offered as an optional accessory and the brackets were on tube rings on the 128 (eq). Early to mid1960s used brackets (two) that were similar to those on the 140/142 that were fit into pre-drilled holes in the ota. Prior to that there was a single bracket to hold the rod. This bracket was similar to a finder bracket in that it had two rings at either end of a single bar-foot that attached to the tube. Rods also varied over time solid bar type rods to hollow aluminum pipe and eventually to what was 1/2 inch aluminum electrical conduit stock near the end.

The Unihex was also an option, you could either have that or a star diagonal and a porro prism. Another variable over time was a aperture stop to be used with the sun filter. That was not part of earlier offerings. The objective cell has also differed over the years from being identical in 114 and 128 to the 128 as in Bill's picture being made along the same lines as the 3 inch photo equatorial with the provision for a counter balance. That is not often seen as a counter balance is really not necessary on a scope of that length/weight due to the fact that heavier accessories, namely the camera would rarely be used with a 60 mm scope. Two wheel vs one wheel focusers are also seen on different iterations of the 128.

The one distinguishing feature is that the 114 was always alt-az and the 128 was always eq., everything else at times was the same (other than variations in eyepieces provided). Even the equatorial mount evolved over time. The earliest 128 eps have no setting circles, which distinguished the 128 eq mount from all others, but this also changed by the late 60s. Size was also a distinguishing factor, but the 128 and the 142 were much closer in size (the mounts) than the 142 and the 152 which was much larger.




I just had a Wow Moment while reading your post on the particulars of Unitron design implementation!!
WOW AWESOME
(aveman


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BarabinoSr
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5670392 - 02/09/13 09:46 AM

Great Thread, Clint! My most remembered Classic Wow Factor moment happened the night when I witnessed first light looking through the 14.25" f/7 Coulter reflector I built in 1983. The objects were M51 The Whirlpool Galaxy, M97(Owl Nebula) and Jupiter viewed during late spring of that year.I used a converted 2-inch wide field military style eyepiece with that scope. I had just bought the mirror set the year before from a former Pontchartrain Astronomy Society member. My astronomical history is replete with such moments but that was one of the best!!! Gary

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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5670425 - 02/09/13 10:07 AM

Thanks Clint. Wow

Terra


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clintwhitman
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: careysub]
      #5670815 - 02/09/13 01:54 PM

Carey, Nice to here of China Lake. Always drove the place for years and thought it might be a great observing site. Also good to see you drop by the classic group!

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terraclarke
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: clintwhitman]
      #5670844 - 02/09/13 02:25 PM

I love Pawn Stars. That would have been so cool.
I'd love to meet them and the American Pickers. I think Danielle on American Pickers is so cool!

Terra


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gelkin
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5671390 - 02/09/13 08:36 PM

In the early 70s while still in high school i belonged to the our local college astronomy club. One event was observing a total lunar eclipse. In the wee hours of the night the shadow was leaving the moon as we all stood on the roof of the science building watching it conclude. Suddenly to the north of the moon a massive fireball burned across the sky in front of us. Blue, green, and orange as it burned out. You could even hear the snap, crakle, and pop. There was a collective moment of silence with dropped jaws and then, WOW.

Tonight i took out the 4" Unitron. First was Jupiter, of course. After a few minutes one of Jupiters moons started a slow seperation from the planets disc. I watched for several minutes as it moved further away and thought, WOW that was nice. Telescopes and observing the universe, WOW.


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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: gelkin]
      #5671725 - 02/10/13 01:47 AM

Personally, it's all WOW! Just Sayin'!

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bremms
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: Datapanic]
      #5672076 - 02/10/13 10:03 AM

+1 for American Pickers. One of the things we watch as a family.
It is all just WOW. I still get a warm fuzzy or is it faint fuzzy feeling when I observe. This is good thread.


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sgorton99
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments *DELETED* new [Re: terraclarke]
      #5672083 - 02/10/13 10:08 AM

Post deleted by sgorton99

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Rich (RLTYS)Moderator
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Re: Classic "WOW FACTOR" Moments new [Re: sgorton99]
      #5673538 - 02/11/13 06:48 AM

Come on folks your drifting off subject.

Rich (RLTYS)


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