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Overhaulin' my CPC-1100

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25 replies to this topic

#1 Psyire

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 12:22 AM

So after doing a ton of research I decided to tear apart my CPC-1100 and do some extensive modifications to the OTA. I didn't document the disassembly of the OTA as there are many websites and threads here on CN that address this part of the procedure. I do have some pictures of where I'm at currently though and more will be posted as I progress through this project.

Project Objective:

1) Re-Grease all OTA components. The stock grease continues to ooze from various parts of the scope. (Annoying)

2) Clean Corrector Plate

3) Install 2 variable speed 40mm DC Fans to help ventilate OTA.

4) Install custom mirror locking assembly.

5) Replace Aluminum OTA Tube with a Carbon Fiber one.

My main goal is to get a little bit more out of this C11 in terms of visual and photographic capability by eliminating some of the typical flaws with these Celestron scopes.

Images so far:

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#2 Zoomster

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 09:51 AM

Nice. They really are simple machines once you disassemble them, aside from the precise mirror and corrector work. Nt nearly as hard as some might think, btw, like the way you put the parts in bins, very, very good idea. Eliminates the "...where did that screw go?" moment we all dread.

#3 JoeR

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 12:38 PM

I did that earlier this year with an NS11 except for mirror locks. I'm surprised you did not defork the OTA. It seems that would make it easier. Maybe not with a CPC. While you have it disassembled you should also flock the tube. It’s cheap and easy and may help with contrast under certain conditions.

#4 rboe

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 12:47 PM

Yup. May as well flock the tube while you have things apart.

#5 Psyire

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Posted 29 November 2011 - 01:37 PM

I was thinking about flocking the tube, but the Carbon tube from Public Missiles (carbonscopetubes.com) will be a nice non-reflective black. Probably good enough for my use.

Excerpt from their website:

Ultra Flat Black Tube Interior
We spent a lot of time researching an ultra-flat black paint for our carbon tubes. We have formulated a superb combination of black primer and flat black topcoat that has excellent bonding to carbon and lower reflectivity than any paint we've ever tested. In testing, we've submerged the tubes in water of various temperature for 2 weeks at a time to make sure it holds up. It does! Our special paint treatment is standard on our Celestron replacement tubes and optional on all custom tubes.


#6 Psyire

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Posted 09 December 2011 - 11:09 AM

Small update: My carbon fiber tubes arrived! Also I figured out a better installation method for my fans. I also have all the parts for my mirror locking assembly. Things should progress a bit faster now, however xmas parties and xmas shopping are eating into my free time. I hope to make some more head way and get some pictures posted this weekend.

#7 gustave

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Posted 10 December 2011 - 11:18 AM

Can anybody recommend a vendor to overhaul a CPC-11 according to the work shown here by Psyrie?
Thanks

#8 Psyire

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 10:31 PM

So I've made some headway on this project. I've drilled the holes for the fans and the pilot holes for the mirror lock assembly. I need to source a 9/16" drill bit this weekend to finish the mirror lock rod holes. I'm also waiting on a RCA female chassis plug and fan filters. The next step is to fit the fans and start wiring in the speed control. The speed control will be mounted internally with just the knob on the outside back of the OTA. Here are some pics of the progress so far.

Hardware:
(CF Dew Shield, Mirror Lock Assmebly, 40mm Silent Fans, Fan Speed Control)

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Progress so far:
(Some holes drilled)

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PS. I'll explain a lot more about the mirror locking components once I get to that stage of installation.

#9 Motokid600

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Posted 22 December 2011 - 02:05 AM

Would it be possible to install an internal-ish dew heating system for the corrector plate?

#10 Psyire

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 12:31 PM

Would it be possible to install an internal-ish dew heating system for the corrector plate?


I'm sure it's possible, but I've tackled enough for this project. lol

#11 Psyire

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Posted 12 February 2012 - 12:39 PM

I've finally made some progress so I figured I'd update this thread with some pictures.

The fans are installed with a variable speed rheostat & 12v RCA jack for power. (from the dew buster) I've tested everything and it works great. These fans do not move a pile of air though which I suspected and am fine with. I'd sooner move a small volume of air continuosly than none at all.

Cooling fans and mirror lock bulkheads installed:

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#12 NGC007

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 04:16 PM

Nice work! Can't wait to see exactly how the mirror locks work. By the way, what type of grease will you re-lube with?

Clem

#13 Psyire

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 06:44 PM

Thanks! I plan to re-lube with super lube, as in all the reading I've done it seems to be the most accepted grease. I did hit a snag with the mirror lock system but I think I figured out a work around. The 3/8" bulkheads were about 24mm too long and interfered with the mirror while completely retracted. So I've cut the bulkheads down to size, this should give me the clearances required to complete the project. I should get time on friday to re-assemble. (I hope)

#14 NGC007

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 07:22 PM

Take your time, get it right. Sounds like mirror locks are one of the most difficult mods to get right (not trying to make you nervous or anything!) Look forward to seeing the carbon tube as well. I have ordered the flockboard flocking roll, no glue required. That way if if change up to a carbon tube I can reuse the flock board.

Clem

#15 Psyire

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 01:46 PM

Almost there!

I've got the mirror locks installed and the carbon tube installed. Just have to clean the corrector plate and re-install it.

Details and pictures of the mirror locks:

After brain storming with a few co-workers on how to lock the mirror on my C11, we came up with the following.. Basically the plan was to JB-Weld some 3/8" Stainless tubing to the back flange on the mirror assembly, then run the rod through bulkheads installed on the rear lens cell of the C11. While focusing (moving the mirror) the rods move back and forth through the bulkhead. Once you've achieved focus you tighten the outside nut on bulkhead and the internal nylon ferrule squeezes against the rod and holds it in place. (and obviously the mirror) The nice part about this is that it's a friction fit against the rod and it places absolutely no tension or strain on the mirror itself. Of course I haven't been able to test how well it works yet.. hopefully soon.

The following images show the rods close to fully extended. (Mirror retracted)

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Shot with new carbon fiber tube:

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#16 CT Sound Shooter

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 10:23 AM

Bravo!

#17 NGC007

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 02:08 PM

Looks fantastic, well done.

Clem

#18 Psyire

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 01:40 AM

Thanks guys!

I had a patch of clear sky tonight so I setup and attempted to verify a few things but I didn't make it far. Seeing was bad enough that fine collimation was out of the question and thin high cloud combined with the moon made everything pretty much pointless. I was able to look at some craters though so I'm pleased at the fact my scope still appears to work. lol

#19 cyberhedz

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Posted 15 June 2012 - 07:44 AM

Awesome modification, I'd like to get a better idea of the breakdown and use of the locks. Any chance you could elaborate?

#20 David Johns

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Posted 21 June 2012 - 05:11 PM

This has been very interesting....many thanks for sharing...
Cheers
David

#21 Psyire

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 09:56 PM

Awesome modification, I'd like to get a better idea of the breakdown and use of the locks. Any chance you could elaborate?


Thanks! The locking system is fairly simple yet might be hard to visualize. Basically there are 3 tabs on the back of the mirror mount assembly as seen here:

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On one tab the focuser is mounted via. the threaded rod so you have the 2 other tabs in which to use to stabilize the mirror. I JB Welded the stainless steel rods to the back of the other two tabs and ran them out the rear cell of the telescope. They pass through 2 bulkhead fittings that were installed on the rear cell, these keep the rods moving straight and offer some support. When you tighten the nuts on the outside of the telescope that are threaded onto the bulkheads, they squeeze an internal plastic ferrel which 'grabs and holds' the stainless steel rod. Finger tight is all that is needed to hold the rods quite well. The theory is that with the rods tight and attached to the mirror it cannot move which will eliminate the mirror shift over long exposure photography. I still haven't tested it because where I'm at it dosen't get dark enough in May/June/July to bother with Astrophotography. Once I have some picture evidence of them working, I'll definately post it. Feel free to ask any other questions, or if any point requires further clarifying.

In the picture below it's easy to see the lower nut which is tightened and loosened for the mirror locking. The upper nut and plug are just there to give the rods a 'finished look' and offer no mechanical use.

Posted Image

#22 Psyire

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 09:57 PM

This has been very interesting....many thanks for sharing...
Cheers
David


Thanks, it's been my pleasure.

#23 cyberhedz

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 05:09 AM

OK, thanks for the explanation. The extra nut and bolt head were confusing, good to know. Can't wait to hear how well it works.

#24 Motokid600

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Posted 26 June 2012 - 12:46 PM

With those fan on the back aren't you concerned they will pull in dust? Because I imagine you need one of those fans as an intake and the other exhaust, yes?

#25 Psyire

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Posted 26 June 2012 - 07:08 PM

With those fan on the back aren't you concerned they will pull in dust? Because I imagine you need one of those fans as an intake and the other exhaust, yes?


Not really.. they might pull in a bit of dust but they have filters on them that are easily removed and cleaned. Many telescope designs have the mirror totally open to the elements so not too concerned. It's pretty easy to remove the corrector and blow out the dust if necessary anyway..


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