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Flocking

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46 replies to this topic

#26 Scott Hamilton

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 10:00 AM

Well, I've thought some about this...

One way to align and mount the baffles in the tube, once you have
cut them out - how do you guys do this, with a razor blade?
would be to to drill 1/8" holes at 60-degee intervals around the circumference
of the baffles and then mount them on nylon threaded rods
with nylon nuts. This should be quite light in weight.
The threaded rods would need only be secured at the top and bottom of the tube.
This way you could mount and line up the baffles on a 1-to-1 template made from the
Newt program's calculations and then mount the stack into the tube.



#27 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 10:51 AM

The thing about baffles that no one has mentioned so far, and another reason that I didn't use them, is that unless they are as thin as you can possibly make them they loose their effectiveness quickly. The inside edge should be sharpened as much as possible before installing. And yes, tube currents and cool down are also factors.

All-in-all, after the research I did, I decided that they were more trouble than they were worth and that a good rough and well painted tube was as effective and a lot easier to manage.

#28 imjeffp

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 12:40 PM

There is a long discussion on flocking in the ATM threads over at Astromart. A specific brand of black velvet fabric seems to be highly regarded.

#29 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 03:34 PM

The #55 Self adhesive at this link looks to be a good price.

http://www.edmundopt...?productid=1502

Tmac

#30 Willy

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 03:47 PM

This is a very interesting and informative thread folks.Has anyone thought of lining the tube with 'woodchip' wallpaper and then painting over it with good quality blackboard paint? This is what I have been considering.
Incidentally Eric,I wish my Belgian was as good as your excellent English. :waytogo:

#31 Jarad

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 04:17 PM

I used the "crushed walnut" method that Warpd described, but I used sawdust as my roughening material. Works very well - makes the surface VERY black and non-reflective. It is also easier to apply than wallpaper or flocking paper for a long tube - spray the paint on, toss a handful of sawdust, roll tube around, stand on end and tap to get rid of loose stuff, repeat. I did use flocking paper for the UTA of a truss dob, but for a solid tube newt it's hard to reach down in the middle with paper and keep it smooth, but easy to spray and toss sawdust.

Jarad


#32 Willy

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 05:13 PM

I take your point,Jarad,
It does sound a lot less hassle.Sounds like a job for a dark,cloudy winters day.

#33 Scott Hamilton

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 07:27 PM

Willy,

I too have been considering using wood-chip wall paper.
When a water soluable adhesive is applied to it, it becomes
pliable and is very forgiving of positioning errors.

#34 Relativist

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 08:07 PM

Also, in the K&R dob book in the instructions for the 8" dob they suggest tearing out the inside of the cardboard sonotube, and then painting it black, thereby acheiving the rough/dark surface desired. What type of spray paint would you suggest? Like the woodchip thing.


.........Curtis

#35 erik

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 10:56 PM

kevin, regarding flocked paper, you can also leave the adhesive backing on, and install it with double sided tape or glue. it's much easier to work with that way, especially with a smaller diameter tube, and if you ever need to take it out, i'm sure that would be a lot easier too. the adhesive that protostar uses is really sticky and can be difficult to work with. but i personally would rather use flocked paper than baffles. as i mentioned before, i think the baffles may interfere with the warm air currents that circulate along the edge of the inside of the tube, making cooldown time longer. -erik wilcox

#36 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 04:49 PM

Just thought about this today - I suspect that anything done to the tube could void the warranty so anyone thinking of 'improving' their scope ought to check into this first.

I have done a little reading on this subject since you all made me aware of it. Many suggest that it is only necessary to flock the tube in the area of the focuser. Agree?

#37 Relativist

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 07:09 PM

I wouldn't say it's the only necessary place, but maybe one of the most crucial... BTW flockign the entire inside of the tube does slitly add to the scope's resale value (ref: astromart).



......Curtis

#38 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 03 February 2004 - 08:54 PM

With regard to the warrenty issue: Most dobs or other "inexpensive" newts are either going to be 'right' when you get them or not. Meaning when you buy one from Meade or Orion or whoever, first thing you ought to do is collimate it and then check it's optics best you can. If you're satisfied that the optics are ok, and you assembled it with all the pieces, there isn't much that is going to 'fail' after that. If the mirror, for example, did develope some kind of defect, like the coating was corrupt or something, you should be albe to just send the mirror back, not the whole scope.

I'd say flock it and not worry about it - get the better view asap.


#39 erik

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Posted 04 February 2004 - 10:55 AM

kevin, it's been my expierience that orion, hardin and meade all have very liberal return policies. some of the smaller companies dont, which is always something to consider when purchasing a new scope.(although there are many smaller companies that have great personalized service and return policies). one other thing to consider when checking the optics(this is slightly off the subject, but since you brought up checking the optics.....) quite often, (for shipping purposes i assume) the manufacturers will overtighten the clips that hold the mirror in the cell, causing astigmatism. if, when checking the optics, you notice that to be the case, loosening the mirror clips will fix it. if you didn't know what was causing it, it would be easy to assume that the mirror was defective.also, theoretically, flocking the tube should increase the resale value, unless you do a messy job installing the flocked paper, then someone is going to have to try and get that sticky mess out if they dont like how it looks! just a thought......

#40 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 17 February 2004 - 01:55 PM

I really enjoyed this thread and when I first started reading it, quickly realized what a simplistic way to increase contrast. Now I only have a small spaceprobe 130EQ so I figured I could use any little edge I can get. Bought some paper from http://www.edmundopt...?productid=1502 and installed it. I did the entire inside of the scope which i must say was rather difficult. A few small creases, a few little bubbles which were easily taken care of with a small slice of a razor blade. Put everything back together, re-collimated which was way-way off, and then got clouds for almost 5 days. Put the scope out last night and high thin clouds started moving in but I ventured out anyway. I must say that views rivaled my best clear night out as far as contrast goes. Even looking through some thin clouds at Saturn it remained very crisp. I've done it before I flocked under the same conditions and there was a significant difference. Un-flock i would have only been able to knock down about 180x in those conditions and last night got up to 284x which is high end for this scope anyway. Jupiter produced same results. I also must say that when I first started looking my scope had only been out about 35-40 min. and the views didn't impress me that much but after a little over an hour things jumped right into focus. So I definitely found out about my cool down times. I even caught a glimpse of M81,M82 through the thin clouds! For a total price of $27.00 including shipping I think so far that this was a wise idea. Can't wait to get a really clear night.

Orion SpaceProbe 130EQ

#41 erik

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Posted 17 February 2004 - 08:35 PM

flocking the tube can make a big difference with any scope, but i think it's an absolute must with any tube made out of cardboard or sonotube, because even though they're usually painted flat black inside, the tube material seems to absorb the paint, making it appear more gray, thus potentially scattering more light. meade's sonotube seems to benefit especially well by flocking the tube.

#42 tomhole

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Posted 17 February 2004 - 08:46 PM

Here's some info I put together when I flocked my Orion XT10:

http://www.tomhole.com/Flocking.htm

I have sinced flocked my Starmaster in key spots and it sure makes a difference. I use the Protostar flocked adhesive paper on everything. One time I accidentally flocked the dog and now I can't find her ;)

Clear skies,

Tom

Attached Thumbnails

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#43 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 17 February 2004 - 09:58 PM

OK. Looks like I'm going with paint. I have only one problem with the idea. I have a steel tube 10" XT by orion. I can see at times due to checking the collmination that the tube does flex. I have thought of beefing up the tube with a few "hoop" type rings to reduce the flex....Question - will this flex make the walnut shells or saw dust fall off onto my mirror?

Has anyone else noted this flex in the 10" orion tubes?

Tim

#44 erik

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 10:59 AM

hi tim, i have the orion XT8 tube, and i've checked collimation at every tube angle and it doesn't flex at all. of course the XT10 weighs 10lbs. more, but in friends XT10 scopes i've never seen any flex. are you sure that it's the tube that's flexing?is it possible that it could be something like a loose mirror clip or secondary support? if the tube did need strengthening, i would use 2 or 3 long steel rods placed along the inside of the whole length of the tube as opposed to hoops or rings, which i don't think would help as much(or you could use both in conjuction with each other).however, i've found orion's steel tubes to be strong and of a thick gauge, so i'm wondering if something else could be happening to change the collimation. maybe where the tube is pressed together (at the seam) is slipping or coming apart? that would also be an easy fix with a couple of screws. i wonder if anybody else has this problem with the XT10 tube. they'd have a better answer than i can come up with.

#45 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 18 February 2004 - 12:45 PM

I used saw dust and yes, you'll probably get flakes and bits falling on to the mirror once in a while. I get it on mine. I pull the mirror everyone every so often and just brush it off with a camel-hair paint brush I have for just that purpose.

#46 lighttrap

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 07:21 AM

Everyone reading this thread and considering flocking their scopes should read this flocking material test conducted by some of the CN ATM gurus:

http://www.cloudynig...icles/flock.htm

I was going to paint w/texture. But, now I'm thinking I might just try velvet or felt from a local fabric store. I was thinking earlier, that black velvet is used in a lot of darkrooms, whereas non-textured black paint is often considered too reflective. My only concern with the velvet is that it'll trap moisture and humidity, which is a real concern in the US SE. Maybe I'll do different things to different scopes, and see which is easiest to work with, which holds up the best, and which works the best.

Regards,
Mike Swaim

#47 Tom L

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 02:12 PM

Did the article discuss how to attach the cloth? I just glanced at the article.


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