I went back out last night after my sister and kids left for the evening. It was windy (we have santa ana winds this week), and there were high thin clouds, so I was only able to find a couple naked eye stars to play with. I can't tell anything about the optics yet, the seeing was awful (maybe a 2/10).
But that tripod has to go. Or at least I need to try the Celestron tripod under it - the one I bought when Franks Camera here was being cleaned out (it's an 80s version, new old stock, but with the plastic leg clamps). There's just not a large enough footprint for the base of the mount to rest on. The tripod has a nice wooden tray that won't fit on the tripod without popping off the supports as you push the leg tips into the ground.
The wooden box it came in would be wonderful if it were just one inch larger in all directions. As it is, it just pi$$es me off. You have to be too careful putting the OTA/fork assembly in, as there is too little clearance (none, really) between the forks and the walls, and between the guidescope and the end of the box. I love the hardware, though.
I do like the way the guidescope is mounted and adjusted, but if I were to build such a system (something similar, I've been thinking about for some years), I'd make it taller for fat fingers to get in between the scope and the guidescope for easier adjustment. That would also allow for larger adjustments (for finding off axis guide stars and such). The other thing I'd do for a guidescope mount like that would be to use a flexible metal plate on the sky end rather than a pin. The pin is only ridgid when the nut on the main end is tight, so while you're making adjustments, the scope can jump around because it's loose everywhere, just staying on the screws and pin-side of the play under its own weight. The optics on the guidescope seem to be reasonably good, though I only viewed through it much on downtown LA skyscrapers 7 miles away during daylight.
The finder doesn't appear to be adjustable, and it's not coaxial with the main scope (but possibly close enough to still be able to find things). It's got a nice reticle and good optics. I like the helical focuser on the finder.
The drive seems to work okay, but I have to set the pot to nearly the maximum speed to keep things in the field. So "fast" on the HC doesn't go much faster. The other button is "stop" which does work well (!).
I'm going to experiment with it when I get more time. We're planning to go out to Cosmic Acres overnight and through tomorrow, so not until Sunday, if there's time and the weather permits.
It should be pretty easy to set up an autocollimation stand for this scope over my oil pan flat. One of these days.