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Old school collection - what next?

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#1 MortonH

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 04:58 AM

While I have a nice collection of quality eyepieces such as Naglers, Panoptics, DeLites, Pentax XF, etc. I recently acquired a couple of Halloween Plossls which I'm really enjoying.  They've ignited a long-held desire to build a small collection of 'classic' eyepieces.  

 

I'm currently waiting on a few to arrive in the mail - when they do I'll have:

 

Halloween 26mm

Silvertop 22mm

Ultima 18mm

Ultrascopic 15mm

Ultima 12.5mm

Silvertop 10mm

Halloween 10mm

 

These eyepieces will be used occasionally in several scopes, mainly a SV66ED, C6 SCT and Tak FS-102 (the two Halloweens are quite nice in the Tak!)

 

 

Coincidentally I've been offered some original smooth-side Tele Vue Wide Fields as possible part-exchange for something else.  The only one that really interests me is the 15mm, although the 24mm, 32m and 40mm are also available.

 

Part of the 15mm's attraction is the form factor, the fact that I've never seen one and also that it comes from the same era as the others mentioned above.  However, the wide fields don't seem to be particularly well regarded these days (I found a thread on CN where they were described as Tele Vue's worst eyepieces) whereas the classic four and five-element Plossls & pseudo-Masuyamas still seem to have a strong following.

 

So what am I asking?  I guess I'm looking for opinions as to whether the WF 15mm deserves a place among the other 'classics' or is it a sub-standard odd duck that I should ignore?  Bear in mind that its performance should be judged against the other oldies and not current designs. 


Edited by MortonH, 13 February 2016 - 01:26 AM.

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#2 CHASLX200

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 06:21 AM

Jump on it.  I love all the older Circle NJ Tele Vue stuff.  I am building up another set.  I always loved the 2" 40 and 32mm WF's the best.



#3 dyslexic nam

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 08:42 AM

I managed to get a 32mm TV WF smoothie in a miscellaneous lot on ebay a bunch of years ago.  It is a great ep, and still my main low power ep.  It has a slight ding in the barrel, so I doubt I would ever get enough money to justify selling it.  At least to my eye, it is a great performer, and clearly better than some cheaper low power ep's I have owned (Antares 32mm erfle, etc).  These are the precursors to the Panoptics, and are still high quality eps.  Throw in the collectability, and I think they are a pretty safe aquisition.

 

You may only be interested in the 15mm, but there are a couple that I, personally, would think about if the proposed exchange is a good one.

 

- the 24mm, like its Panoptic cousin, approaches the max TFOV for a 1.25" ep.  Thus, if you ever need to use 1.25" eps exclusively, or want a more compact travel ep kit, it would pretty much offer you the widest views you can get in a reasonably sized package.

 

- the 40mm, much like the 24mm, pretty much maxes out TFOV - except it does so for a 2" barrel.  I got one of these not that long ago when I bought a whole observing set, and had to sell it to recoup some of the investment.  It was the only way I could justify the whole purchase, and definitely worth it overall, but I now really regret selling it and not trying to make up the funds somewhere else.  I don't have any really short focal ratio scopes, so I am sure it would have performed as well as my 32mm - except that it would be even wider/lower.

 

So, collectability aside, these may be useful enough as parts of your ep kit to warrant consideration.  Cheers


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#4 rguasto

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 09:38 AM

TV widefields are essentially erfles. Better in slow FR telescopes. Great as far as an erfles can be but not a well corrected EP as other TeleVue's are known for.
-Rob

#5 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 12:34 PM

TV widefields are essentially erfles. Better in slow FR telescopes. Great as far as an erfles can be but not a well corrected EP as other TeleVue's are known for.
-Rob

 

I don't know how much experience you have with the TV Wide Fields or with Erfles but I have a fair amount with each. Currently I have the 32mm and the 24mm and I also owned the 15mm but gave it to my brother. I have owned a number of Erfle's and currently the 20mm Celestron is in my collection.

 

In my fast scopes, the 12.5 inch F/4.06 operating at F/4.67 Paracorr, the NP-101 at F/5.4 with it's near perfect field, these eyepieces are much cleaner and sharper across the field of view. There is no doubt there is astigmatism to be seen but it much better corrected than the Erfle designs.  Comparing the 32mm Wide Field with a 35mm Erfle and the 35mm Panoptic, I would put the 32mm WF about halfway.  It is not as perfect as the Panoptic but even in the fast scopes, the off-axis aberrations are not distracting, the center is sharp and the sweep spot relatively large. An Erfle in the NP-101, it's not pretty.

 

Here's a story..  There is something very special about that 32mm Widefield, it has what I call the "Big Easy View", it is just so easy to look into. For some years, it was my first string finder/widest field eyepiece.  When I saw my way clear to buying a 35mm Panoptic, I decided I no longer needed the 32mm WF so I gave it to a physics teacher who needed a good widefield.  Soon enough I got to missing that 32mm WF. Optically it wasn't as perfect as the Panoptic, no doubt about that.But it had that Big Easy View.  So, the next time I saw a 32mm on Astromart, I jumped on.  

 

These days, I have four longer focal length two inch eyepieces, the 32mm WF, the 31mm Nagler, the 35mm and 41mm Panoptics.  From my light polluted backyard, I almost always use the 32mm WF. It only weighs about 16 ounces and the views are most enjoyable. When I am out in the high desert where the skies are dark and clear, it's the 31mm Nagler that gets the most use of the four.  But overall, the 32mm WF is number 2 in use.  

 

If I were in Morton's shoes I would purchase them all, try them out and sort it all later.  These are collectible eyepieces and represent the first step in the evolution of the Panoptic design. And they are good eyepieces, still.  I would certainly grab the 32mm, I have never owned the 40mm but the next time one shows up at a good price, I will probably jump on it.  I know it won't be a well corrected as the 41mm Panoptic but it should be somewhat lighter and it would make a good eyepiece for my backyard collection.

 

One last thought:  Before I acquired the 16mm Type 2 Nagler, the 15mm Widefield was my midrange eyepiece.  It got a lot of use.  It was a good eyepiece but like the 15mm Panoptic and 16mm Meade Series 5000 SWA, it's short on eye relief.. In my mind, the 32mm is the one if you want a classic, historically significant eyepiece that provides most enjoyable views.

 

Jon


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#6 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 02:49 PM

I once owned the 15mm Wide Field and later the 15mm Panoptic, which I won as a star party door prize.  The eye relief was indeed tight in both.  When I bought a 12mm Nagler T2, I sold the 15mm Wide Field.  

 

Dave Mitsky


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#7 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 02:55 PM

I once owned the 15mm Wide Field and later the 15mm Panoptic, which I won as a star party door prize.  The eye relief was indeed tight.  When I bought a 12mm Nagler T2, I sold the 15mm Wide Field.  

 

Dave Mitsky

 

Dave:

 

Do you still have the 12mm T2?  I have one and it is one of my favorite eyepieces, It provides a 1.6mm-2.5mm in my scopes and it is another one of the eyepieces that just has something special about the view.

 

Jon



#8 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 03:50 PM

I no longer have the 12mm T2, Jon.  It was sold when I purchased a 13mm T6, which was in turn replaced with a 13mm Ethos.  I do sometimes miss the 12mm T2.

 

Dave Mitsky


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#9 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 07:27 PM

I no longer have the 12mm T2, Jon.  It was sold when I purchased a 13mm T6, which was in turn replaced with a 13mm Ethos.  I do sometimes miss the 12mm T2.

 

Dave Mitsky

 

 

Thanks...

 

Sometimes I think about moving towards eyepieces like the 13mm Nagler and Ethos, maybe I will do it one of these days.  But there is a point when I say to myself, enough is enough, the equipment I have, it does the job.  

 

jon


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#10 MortonH

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 08:25 PM

 

TV widefields are essentially erfles. Better in slow FR telescopes. Great as far as an erfles can be but not a well corrected EP as other TeleVue's are known for.
-Rob

 

I don't know how much experience you have with the TV Wide Fields or with Erfles but I have a fair amount with each. Currently I have the 32mm and the 24mm and I also owned the 15mm but gave it to my brother. I have owned a number of Erfle's and currently the 20mm Celestron is in my collection.

 

In my fast scopes, the 12.5 inch F/4.06 operating at F/4.67 Paracorr, the NP-101 at F/5.4 with it's near perfect field, these eyepieces are much cleaner and sharper across the field of view. There is no doubt there is astigmatism to be seen but it much better corrected than the Erfle designs.  Comparing the 32mm Wide Field with a 35mm Erfle and the 35mm Panoptic, I would put the 32mm WF about halfway.  It is not as perfect as the Panoptic but even in the fast scopes, the off-axis aberrations are not distracting, the center is sharp and the sweep spot relatively large. An Erfle in the NP-101, it's not pretty.

 

Here's a story..  There is something very special about that 32mm Widefield, it has what I call the "Big Easy View", it is just so easy to look into. For some years, it was my first string finder/widest field eyepiece.  When I saw my way clear to buying a 35mm Panoptic, I decided I no longer needed the 32mm WF so I gave it to a physics teacher who needed a good widefield.  Soon enough I got to missing that 32mm WF. Optically it wasn't as perfect as the Panoptic, no doubt about that.But it had that Big Easy View.  So, the next time I saw a 32mm on Astromart, I jumped on.  

 

These days, I have four longer focal length two inch eyepieces, the 32mm WF, the 31mm Nagler, the 35mm and 41mm Panoptics.  From my light polluted backyard, I almost always use the 32mm WF. It only weighs about 16 ounces and the views are most enjoyable. When I am out in the high desert where the skies are dark and clear, it's the 31mm Nagler that gets the most use of the four.  But overall, the 32mm WF is number 2 in use.  

 

If I were in Morton's shoes I would purchase them all, try them out and sort it all later.  These are collectible eyepieces and represent the first step in the evolution of the Panoptic design. And they are good eyepieces, still.  I would certainly grab the 32mm, I have never owned the 40mm but the next time one shows up at a good price, I will probably jump on it.  I know it won't be a well corrected as the 41mm Panoptic but it should be somewhat lighter and it would make a good eyepiece for my backyard collection.

 

One last thought:  Before I acquired the 16mm Type 2 Nagler, the 15mm Widefield was my midrange eyepiece.  It got a lot of use.  It was a good eyepiece but like the 15mm Panoptic and 16mm Meade Series 5000 SWA, it's short on eye relief.. In my mind, the 32mm is the one if you want a classic, historically significant eyepiece that provides most enjoyable views.

 

Jon

 

 

I had a feeling that if I mentioned the 32mm it would dominate the replies! :lol:

 

I really don't want the giant 40mm and already have a 24mm Panoptic, so those two are out (can't afford them all anyway).  But the 15mm and 32mm together would be worth around the same as the Vixen LVW 42.  Might consider trying for a straight swap for those two.



#11 CHASLX200

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 08:46 PM

 

TV widefields are essentially erfles. Better in slow FR telescopes. Great as far as an erfles can be but not a well corrected EP as other TeleVue's are known for.
-Rob

 

I don't know how much experience you have with the TV Wide Fields or with Erfles but I have a fair amount with each. Currently I have the 32mm and the 24mm and I also owned the 15mm but gave it to my brother. I have owned a number of Erfle's and currently the 20mm Celestron is in my collection.

 

In my fast scopes, the 12.5 inch F/4.06 operating at F/4.67 Paracorr, the NP-101 at F/5.4 with it's near perfect field, these eyepieces are much cleaner and sharper across the field of view. There is no doubt there is astigmatism to be seen but it much better corrected than the Erfle designs.  Comparing the 32mm Wide Field with a 35mm Erfle and the 35mm Panoptic, I would put the 32mm WF about halfway.  It is not as perfect as the Panoptic but even in the fast scopes, the off-axis aberrations are not distracting, the center is sharp and the sweep spot relatively large. An Erfle in the NP-101, it's not pretty.

 

Here's a story..  There is something very special about that 32mm Widefield, it has what I call the "Big Easy View", it is just so easy to look into. For some years, it was my first string finder/widest field eyepiece.  When I saw my way clear to buying a 35mm Panoptic, I decided I no longer needed the 32mm WF so I gave it to a physics teacher who needed a good widefield.  Soon enough I got to missing that 32mm WF. Optically it wasn't as perfect as the Panoptic, no doubt about that.But it had that Big Easy View.  So, the next time I saw a 32mm on Astromart, I jumped on.  

 

These days, I have four longer focal length two inch eyepieces, the 32mm WF, the 31mm Nagler, the 35mm and 41mm Panoptics.  From my light polluted backyard, I almost always use the 32mm WF. It only weighs about 16 ounces and the views are most enjoyable. When I am out in the high desert where the skies are dark and clear, it's the 31mm Nagler that gets the most use of the four.  But overall, the 32mm WF is number 2 in use.  

 

If I were in Morton's shoes I would purchase them all, try them out and sort it all later.  These are collectible eyepieces and represent the first step in the evolution of the Panoptic design. And they are good eyepieces, still.  I would certainly grab the 32mm, I have never owned the 40mm but the next time one shows up at a good price, I will probably jump on it.  I know it won't be a well corrected as the 41mm Panoptic but it should be somewhat lighter and it would make a good eyepiece for my backyard collection.

 

One last thought:  Before I acquired the 16mm Type 2 Nagler, the 15mm Widefield was my midrange eyepiece.  It got a lot of use.  It was a good eyepiece but like the 15mm Panoptic and 16mm Meade Series 5000 SWA, it's short on eye relief.. In my mind, the 32mm is the one if you want a classic, historically significant eyepiece that provides most enjoyable views.

 

Jon

 

You got that right about the 32mm WF.  It works perfect with my glasses. One of my top 5 fav eyepeices. I also loved the 40mm WF and the same for older Meade 32 and 40mm SWA's.



#12 MortonH

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 02:31 AM

Here's the current classic collection after three new arrivals today.  The Ultrascopic is kinda ruining the black & orange theme but it'll be even worse next week as I'm expecting a couple of Silvertops!

 

I think the Wide Field 15mm might look nice in the middle of this bunch...

 

Classic_EPs_ 1.jpg


Edited by MortonH, 12 February 2016 - 02:33 AM.


#13 macdonjh

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 09:25 AM

I like my smootie Plossls so much that I started collecting the smootie wide fields and Naglers.  I purchased a 13mm Nagler and a 24mm wide field.  I haven't purchased any other classic Tele Vue offerings because those two kidney bean/ black-out so easily I don't like using them.  When I hold my head just right the views are good, but I can get views just as good with less trouble from modern Tele Vue eye pieces. 

 

I will say it's fun to hold the original 13mm in one had and my 13mm T6 in the other...

 

Of course you see how limited my experience with the classic Tele Vues are, so your mileage my vary.  My $0.02.



#14 BillP

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 01:53 PM

I once owned the 15mm Wide Field and later the 15mm Panoptic, which I won as a star party door prize.  The eye relief was indeed tight in both.

 

 

Yup...both are eye-stickers.



#15 hyia

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 03:50 PM

 

 

TV widefields are essentially erfles. Better in slow FR telescopes. Great as far as an erfles can be but not a well corrected EP as other TeleVue's are known for.
-Rob

 

I don't know how much experience you have with the TV Wide Fields or with Erfles but I have a fair amount with each. Currently I have the 32mm and the 24mm and I also owned the 15mm but gave it to my brother. I have owned a number of Erfle's and currently the 20mm Celestron is in my collection.

 

In my fast scopes, the 12.5 inch F/4.06 operating at F/4.67 Paracorr, the NP-101 at F/5.4 with it's near perfect field, these eyepieces are much cleaner and sharper across the field of view. There is no doubt there is astigmatism to be seen but it much better corrected than the Erfle designs.  Comparing the 32mm Wide Field with a 35mm Erfle and the 35mm Panoptic, I would put the 32mm WF about halfway.  It is not as perfect as the Panoptic but even in the fast scopes, the off-axis aberrations are not distracting, the center is sharp and the sweep spot relatively large. An Erfle in the NP-101, it's not pretty.

 

Here's a story..  There is something very special about that 32mm Widefield, it has what I call the "Big Easy View", it is just so easy to look into. For some years, it was my first string finder/widest field eyepiece.  When I saw my way clear to buying a 35mm Panoptic, I decided I no longer needed the 32mm WF so I gave it to a physics teacher who needed a good widefield.  Soon enough I got to missing that 32mm WF. Optically it wasn't as perfect as the Panoptic, no doubt about that.But it had that Big Easy View.  So, the next time I saw a 32mm on Astromart, I jumped on.  

 

These days, I have four longer focal length two inch eyepieces, the 32mm WF, the 31mm Nagler, the 35mm and 41mm Panoptics.  From my light polluted backyard, I almost always use the 32mm WF. It only weighs about 16 ounces and the views are most enjoyable. When I am out in the high desert where the skies are dark and clear, it's the 31mm Nagler that gets the most use of the four.  But overall, the 32mm WF is number 2 in use.  

 

If I were in Morton's shoes I would purchase them all, try them out and sort it all later.  These are collectible eyepieces and represent the first step in the evolution of the Panoptic design. And they are good eyepieces, still.  I would certainly grab the 32mm, I have never owned the 40mm but the next time one shows up at a good price, I will probably jump on it.  I know it won't be a well corrected as the 41mm Panoptic but it should be somewhat lighter and it would make a good eyepiece for my backyard collection.

 

One last thought:  Before I acquired the 16mm Type 2 Nagler, the 15mm Widefield was my midrange eyepiece.  It got a lot of use.  It was a good eyepiece but like the 15mm Panoptic and 16mm Meade Series 5000 SWA, it's short on eye relief.. In my mind, the 32mm is the one if you want a classic, historically significant eyepiece that provides most enjoyable views.

 

Jon

 

 

I had a feeling that if I mentioned the 32mm it would dominate the replies! :lol:

 

I really don't want the giant 40mm and already have a 24mm Panoptic, so those two are out (can't afford them all anyway).  But the 15mm and 32mm together would be worth around the same as the Vixen LVW 42.  Might consider trying for a straight swap for those two.

 

 

I have the 15 and 19 TV wideviews as well as the 42 LVW.  The eye relief on the 15 is tight but does not seem THAT bad to me.  For comparison, I find it more comfortable than a 10 plossl.  I also find it to be quite sharp in an f9 refractor.  The 19 does give me a bit of that easy view feel that Jon mentions for the 32.  The 42 LVW, however, is one of my favorite eyepieces along with my 7 mm T1 Nagler.  I wouldn't trade it for the widefields unless I simply had no use for that focal length.    



#16 MortonH

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 04:59 PM

I'm selling the LVW 42mm regardless. The wide fields were offered as an alternative to cash.  

 

Based on feedback here I'm thinking cash is probably the best option. Then I can take my time and buy something better.



#17 MortonH

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Posted 13 February 2016 - 01:30 AM

Decided against the wide fields but they've made me think about a Panoptic 15mm.  I'll start a new thread about that one.



#18 MortonH

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Posted 23 February 2016 - 08:37 AM

The finished (for now) collection:

 

Back row: Celestron Halloween Plossls 10mm & 26mm, Orion Ultrascopic 35mm, Celestron Ultimas 18mm & 12mm

 

Middle: Celestron Silvertop (Gen 2) Plossl 22mm, Orion Ultrascopic 15mm

 

Front: Celestron Silvertop (Gen 3) Plossl 10mm

 

Very happy with all of them. Surprisingly good performance, especially the Ultrascopics and Silvertops.

 

 

Classic_EPs_ 004.jpg

 



#19 CarlDD

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Posted 23 February 2016 - 10:29 AM

I call mine " The Heavy Mob "

 

N20T2, N16T2, N12T2, Big Barlow and Paracor T1.

 

Best Regards

 

Carl

 

 

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#20 bgi

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Posted 23 February 2016 - 07:13 PM

Mr. Nagler 20mm T2 is the Sumo Wrestler of eyepieces.

 

Large.  Stout.  Srz bzness.  Not to be underestimated in any regard.

 

:lol:



#21 joaoba

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Posted 23 February 2016 - 07:31 PM

I like the old-school Celestrons.

Here's my Ultima set (30, 24 18, 12.5, 7.5mm and a Barlow).

 

IMG 1821

 

And the Halloweens (40, 32, 26, 17, 12.7, 10, 7.5, 6.3mm)

 

IMG 1825

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#22 MortonH

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 05:12 AM

The collection has been growing again...

 

Classic_EPs_27032016_ 021.jpg


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#23 dyslexic nam

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 08:34 AM

The collection has been growing again...

 

attachicon.gifClassic_EPs_27032016_ 021.jpg

 

 

LOL - it tends to do that.  Nice looking set :)


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#24 JimV

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 09:09 PM

I have a UO VT 12.5 and a Brandon 12 I really like.  Better ER than Plossls.

I also have an Ultrascopic 15 and a few Silvertop 26.  I like them both.

I had an 18 Ultima for a while, just wasn't a favorite.

I try not to buy shorter than 12mm, and prefer using a Barlow.

Appreciate those heavy chrome barrels over today's lightweight aluminum!


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#25 Jan Owen

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 06:00 PM

Here's an image of some of the earlier TV stuff that I bought more or less as it came out from Uncle Al... Still have it all, but have added more, of course, over the years...

IMG_6701aa (1800 x 1040)CN.jpg


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