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The Monolux 60 mm Equatorial Refractor

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#1 BarrySimon615

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Posted 15 November 2004 - 11:07 AM

About a year or so ago a good friend of mine gave me a partial telescope package (labeled Monolux) consisting of a wooden case, 60 mm f/15 tube assembly, eyepieces (.965) diagonal, erecting prism, barlow, and an equatorial head. The tripod including top plate for attaching the equatorial head was missing as was a finder scope and bracket.

My friend had previously inquired about Monolux as I had earlier traded a camera lens for a Monolux 60 mm f/11.7 (700 mm f.l.) alt-azimuth telescope. This one while labeled Monolux was really no different from countless other 60 mm alt-azimuth refractors we have all seen over the years. What sets most of these apart is the label only and the color of the paint used; most seem to come from the same factory.

The 60 mm equatorial was somewhat different however. It's tube assembly is better built than most that you see. The objective cell has a nicer profile. The objective cell is identical to one on another scope I purchased about 15 years ago and listed as a "Carton" refractor. The objective cell is also identical to one that Tasco used on a variable zoom short focus refractor called the 5VTE. The threading for the objective cell was finer (dewshield too) and the aluminum tube is just a little bit thicker in guage.

However what really distinguishes this scope from other typical 60 mm equatorial refractors is the equatorial head itself. It is very unlike your typical Tasco type equatorlal head which many distributors have used for many years. This one has very clean lines and is very functional. (see photo). I don't know about the internals but it's movement is very smooth and there is no backlash at all when the slow motion cables are used. In this respect it has advantages over the Unitron mounts that I have. It has setting circles, but these are not nearly as nice as Unitron setting circles.

I was easily able to fit the head into the top of my TeleVue Gibraltar tripod and using a universal finder dovetail bracket and some JB Weld, I have a Vixen finder and Orion bracket installed.

Check out the photo. If anyone has comments about the mount and when it was available I would appreciate learning a little bit more about it.

Barry Simon

Attached Thumbnails

  • 252103-Monolux 60 mm with closeup.jpg


#2 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 15 November 2004 - 01:20 PM

Barry:

I bought one of these at a garage sale about ten years ago for around $25. It was pretty slick. I didn't use it much and gave it away, its made the rounds from friend to friend and every so often I think I want to get it back....

I believe this is one of the first scopes that Todd Gross reviewed, he had one as a child.

Jon

#3 BarrySimon615

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Posted 15 November 2004 - 01:44 PM

If I remember correctly, what Todd Gross reviewed is the 60 mm alt-azimuth version that I also mentioned, not the equatorial. I tried going to Todd Gross's web site to verify this. I found that his site is being rebuilt and is not up yet.

Did you have the alt-azimuth version, or the equatorial version as pictured?

Barry Simon

#4 Don W

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Posted 15 November 2004 - 06:01 PM

Wow, that mount does look different. Very sweet.

#5 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 15 November 2004 - 06:07 PM

I had the EQ version. Its been a while since I have seen it and it was missing the finder. That was about all though..

Maybe I will hunt it down and buy it back... I think the legs you have are a definite up grade from the originals..

The one thing I remember about it was this:

At that time I also had a Meade 97ER, a rubber armored Meade clone of the C90. One Cloudy Night I was looking at some lights maybe a half mile away and was suprised to find that at equal magnfication the 60mm refractor was brighter than the 90mm Mak...

My recollection is that Todd had the Eq version but that one one vague recollection with about a 50% chance as being correct...

Jon


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