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Equipment Discussions >> Classic Telescopes

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Chuck HardsModerator
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Loc: The Great Basin
Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6430334 - 03/26/14 01:47 PM

There's a typo in his classified ad in the May S&T. It reads:

"...research-grade 1-inch f12.2 D&G refractor..."


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figurate
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Reged: 02/09/13

Loc: Metro North Texas
Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6430981 - 03/26/14 07:10 PM

There is definitely romance, 19th century style, associated with the long refractor, as I think everybody here fully appreciates. That is a great term to employ for the purpose of conveying the subtle joys of the night-time sky using just such an instrument, though I can only try to imagine what it would be like to use in person.

There do seem to be a lot of large-caliber refractors (and otherwise!) in your neck of the woods, Chuck. Would you care to take a stab at a valuation? My own estimate was just a wild guess; this kind of equipment is way out of my league.

Fred


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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: figurate]
      #6430993 - 03/26/14 07:14 PM

Chuck will build the same for $75,000 so it maybe within reach.

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figurate
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Reged: 02/09/13

Loc: Metro North Texas
Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6431113 - 03/26/14 08:19 PM

Hmmm, lets see how much I can find under those sofa cushions...

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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: figurate]
      #6431115 - 03/26/14 08:20 PM

You need a really big sofa with really deep cushions and has not been searched for 100 years.

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Geo31
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Reged: 01/28/13

Loc: Kingwood, TX
Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6431342 - 03/26/14 10:26 PM

Quote:

Just get over the sticker price and look at the scope. It is beautiful.




Or, get over the beauty and look at the sticker price.

Like anything, there is a seller, and at some point there will be a buyer. Those two will work out the value.

On one hand it's a beautiful instrument. If you are willing and able to pay the price, then it's worth it. If not, you are no more qualified than anyone else to determine its worth.

Like anything, there are other alternatives that can be purchased for the money that is asked for this scope. While they may not be large refractors, they are no less valid.

In the end, it's a unique scope. Very few will have both the desire and the means. Given this, I would expect a potential buyer to understand this point and drive a very hard bargain. Just because it cost the seller a lot of money it doesn't meant someone else is willing to pay anywhere near that. Romantisism may be nice, but cash is cold and hard.

Whether I think it's a wonderful scope or not does not change the supply and demand dynamics. Bottom line is, there aren't too many people going to come knocking on the door for a 12" refractor. Cold hard facts I'm afraid.


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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Geo31]
      #6431353 - 03/26/14 10:34 PM

OMG
Why do you want to go back there again. What difference does it make. You are never going to buy it.

JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE
JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE
JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE
JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE
JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE
JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE

That is all this post was intended for

JUST LOOK AT THE BEAUTIFUL SCOPE

Edited by starman876 (03/26/14 10:35 PM)


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terraclarke
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6431428 - 03/26/14 11:28 PM

I think its all been said way more than once now and we are really going in circles on this one.

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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G [Re: terraclarke]
      #6431456 - 03/26/14 11:39 PM



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Chuck HardsModerator
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: figurate]
      #6431811 - 03/27/14 07:51 AM

Quote:

Chuck. Would you care to take a stab at a valuation? My own estimate was just a wild guess; this kind of equipment is way out of my league.

Fred




Fred, I was thinking about putting a spreadsheet together and plugging in some pricing to get an accurate idea of what it would cost to build such a telescope. I don't know Ed Byers well, having only spoken to him a handful of times, but I work for a man who is a very good friend of his and sees him regularly so all of Ed's costs could be easily obtained. Ed probably also has much information on costs not associated with his direct work on it. D&G would be willing to quote on an objective, everything else could be priced without too much pain, assuming a complete inventory could be obtained from the owner.

However, it's clear that pricing this instrument is much too pedestrian for many contributors to this thread and wouldn't be appreciated, so at this point I highly doubt that I'll put the time into it.

The telescope community will undoubtedly find out the final selling price when the time comes and we'll know then what the market for such a unique instrument actually is. In the meantime, we need to please stand behind the velvet rope and try not to get any drool on the telescope.


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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6432577 - 03/27/14 03:39 PM

I remember reading somewhere that Ed stated the mount cost $370,000 to build. Why I do not know. You can go from there.

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Al Paslow
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6433558 - 03/27/14 11:45 PM

I see a number of issues here. Iím sure this is a very fine and capable instrument and any one of us would be proud to own it. However, there are some points to ponder.

Initially one may conclude this telescope was a no expense spared in design and manufacture. However, it uses a crown and flint achromat which for the asking price of the telescope is the first item of concern.

Next many portions of the telescope appears to be customized and an overall design expanded by Ed Byers himself, who is certainly one of the best. While this is a tremendous asset to any amateur it does come with a very expensive price.

In my last conversation with Mr. Byers; he will not entertain the development of a telescope unless one has very deep pockets. Letís just say this comes on the expense of an instrument on a university pricing level. Looking at this in perspective, he has the experience, and the machinery to make some of the finest equatorial mounts and gears in the world. BTW the largest Byers gear ever made is something like 82 inches in diameter. Mr. Byers has a number of patents to his name so letís understand what your money is buying here.

I also get the impression that perhaps the owner of the instrument may have started more budget minded by ordering a 12 inch achromat from Barry at D&G Optical rather than buying say a much more expensive triplet (if one was into the best) but once the tube assembly arrived it was very quick to see that there are no commercial mountings out there to support such a long tube. Enter Ed Byers.

Most likely the project escalated and customizing and thoughts of something really unique in the present day world of telescopes evolved. Limits of what should be built and the expenses involved pushed aside.

Is it the most efficient way of spending money on a large refractor telescope, perhaps yes and no? I would rather compare it to a Rolls Royce in a number of aspects but not completely.

For those of us that are savvy enough to engineer and build a mount and drive system for a 12 inch D&G could do wonders by buying materials on ebay and discount metal suppliers like the alro online store or speedymetals. Large pieces and small can carved using water jet for a very affordable method of machining down to twenty thousands and a lathe or a mill can finish the rest. Water jet time is dirt cheap do in comparison to regular or CNC machine time so not hesitate to consider it!

If you can buy scrap steel or aluminum you can substantially save on material and budget even more.
Then the pricing on large Byers gears can still be considered. I bought a set of DEC & RA 12 inch gears, double cut with clutches from Ed late last year for about $ 2,000. Larger sizes are probably still available and my guess a set of 18 inch ones might set you back $ 7,000? But you better act fast Mr. Byers is retiring as he is over 90 years old.

Lastly, what the owner of the instrument has is a unique telescope with portions built and supervised by some of the best in the business. However, a remarkable telescope of the same size could have been built by an advanced amateur perhaps without the final accuracy and sophistication for a fraction of the asking price. Believe it!


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Chuck HardsModerator
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Al Paslow]
      #6433861 - 03/28/14 08:26 AM

Quote:


Initially one may conclude this telescope was a no expense spared in design and manufacture. However, it uses a crown and flint achromat which for the asking price of the telescope is the first item of concern.






On the other hand, for narrow band solar work, apparently the builder's main interest, this is no concern at all.


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jgraham
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6433887 - 03/28/14 08:51 AM

As big and beautiful as this equipment looks, at the end of the day it is still a 12" telescope.

Not far from my house is a beautiful olde observatory complete with a wonderful olde 9"(?) refractor on a Warner and Swasey mount. Just beautiful. The only problem is that it is built into the side of a classic and equally beautiful mansion. So, as long as I've lived here (40 years) as far as I know it has never really been used, it is covered in dust, and it makes a great conversation piece at wine parties. I suspect that this 12" started life as a serious effort to build a serious instrument, but ended up a white elephant. I hear that William Hesrchel had a similar experience with his 40".

Now if I can only hit the Powerball! Daddy needs a new elephant!


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Joe Cepleur
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Reged: 03/18/10

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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Chuck Hards]
      #6434013 - 03/28/14 10:02 AM

Quote:

Quote:


Initially one may conclude this telescope was a no expense spared in design and manufacture. However, it uses a crown and flint achromat which for the asking price of the telescope is the first item of concern.






On the other hand, for narrow band solar work, apparently the builder's main interest, this is no concern at all.




No concern to the builder for his use, but possibly a major problem to finding a buyer. Seems odd, given the how the mount was built to be useable anywhere in the world; the builder clearly, starting at some point, had his eye on building a legacy. A buyer might demand a much lower price, to offset the cost of having the objective replaced. How sad, to replace a big D&G that could have been built to higher standards in the first place!


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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: Joe Cepleur]
      #6434106 - 03/28/14 10:39 AM

Joe, what are you talking about? having the objective replaced? A higher standard? Did I miss something?

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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6434147 - 03/28/14 10:56 AM

OH I See
The crown and flint achromat issue. Yes, I could have been an APO for that price. That is a good point. It did say in the listing that this was one of the finest lenses that D&G ever made with special care taken to make sure the figure of the lens was the finest possible. Maybe this lens was made to a higher standard than other achromats that D&G produces.


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terraclarke
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: starman876]
      #6434536 - 03/28/14 02:38 PM

Here you go. 304mm (12") F12 apochromat:

http://www.apm-telescopes.de/en/Telescopes-/Refracting-Telescopes-OTA/Apochro...

Just 200,100 USD at todays conversion rate. (OTA)


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starman876
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Re: 12" D&G new [Re: terraclarke]
      #6434543 - 03/28/14 02:45 PM

$200,000 US dollars is a bargain for that scope. Wonder how many are ordered? I bet there is a cheaper way to make it

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Chuck HardsModerator
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Re: 12" D&G [Re: terraclarke]
      #6434546 - 03/28/14 02:45 PM

Terra, I have to admit that if I had the means, I'd pass on Dr. Noffsinger's scope, and buy the Zeiss. No-brainer.

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