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What Year Was My Questar Made? (Serial Number Code)

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#1 Optics Patent

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Posted 01 March 2017 - 02:29 PM

The year of manufacture is encoded into the serial number engraved on the base plate of every Standard or Duplex Questar drive.  The initial first digit is the last digit of the year of manufacture ("5" = 1965, 75, 85, etc).  To determine the decade use this guide based on an inventory spreadsheet found at the Yahoo Questar group (which is difficult to join and navigate). 

 

1950s:  2??-6??  The earliest models did not have the year code digit. 

1960s:  6??-40??

1970s:  41??-76??

1980s:  77??-99??

1990s:  100??-109??

2000s:  110??-

"Current"*:  13000

 

Numbers are approximate at the ends of the decades, but it will be obvious where yours falls.  For example, if yours is 9-CV-4111-BB, then the 4111 means you're either near the end of the 60s or beginning of the 70s, so logically the 9 must mean 1969.

 

50th Anniversary models produced since 2000 do not have the year code.

 

Field Models do not have the year code.  Known examples:

#50 1957

#463 1967

#972 1972

#2026 1975

#2376 1978

#3280 1984

#4086 1989

#6000 "Current"*

*According to very out-of-date Questar website.

 

For more info on what serial number codes mean and details on other models, visit the Questar Corporation web page here.


Edited by Optics Patent, 02 March 2017 - 10:33 AM.

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#2 Optics Patent

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Posted 02 March 2017 - 10:23 AM

#9-611 just appeared on Ebay, and I edited the numbers above accordingly since some 600s were made in the 50s.  #0-675 was made in 1960.


Edited by Optics Patent, 02 March 2017 - 10:30 AM.


#3 Optics Patent

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Posted 28 March 2017 - 09:27 PM

Yes. Between 600 and 4000 so 1960s. 3 means 1963.
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#4 Optics Patent

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 05:18 PM

Fine tuning based on some sales listings in the last year.  Note that there is not perfect sequential numbering, so there are many instances when a lower number is indicated as from being in a later year.

 

1950s:  1??-6??  The earliest models did not have the year code digit.

1960s:  6??-41??

1970s:  41??-77??

1980s:  76??-99??

1990s:  99??-109??

2000s:  109??-          Since 2000 or 2001 the date code is in double digits, making identification unambiguous.


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#5 RMay

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Posted 30 April 2019 - 03:12 PM

Interesting thread. Just took a look at my Standard 3.5, purchased new in 1983 or 1984, and the serial number is 3-8586. This seems to follow their standard numbering protocol (year of mfg = 3, SN = 8586).

Ron

Edited by RMay, 30 April 2019 - 03:14 PM.


#6 Terra Nova

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Posted 30 April 2019 - 03:54 PM

My mystic purple Standard is 5-8919-BB, so two years later (1985) and 333 Faberge eggs later! wink.gif
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#7 RMay

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Posted 06 May 2019 - 12:45 AM

...and, I’ve just heard of 3-8591, only 5 SN away from mine.

Ron

#8 empikid

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Posted 19 February 2020 - 08:25 PM

my field model says 9 CV GM F 814 i am a little confused on my serial number and under that might be someones last 4 SS numbers that say 9671. I will try to post a picture later. Upon further examination it might be CM with a scratch but sure looks like a GM. It's the only one i have ever seen without the built in barlow.

Ron Woodring 


Edited by empikid, 19 February 2020 - 08:47 PM.


#9 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 03:50 PM

Questar number 1, F958BBCM, F= FIELD MODEL, 958=________, BB=BROADBAND ,CM=CINEMA MODEL

Questar number 2, 9CVCMF814, 9=1969 or 1979, CV=CERVIT MIRROR, CM=CINEMA MODEL, F=FIELD MODEL, 814=_________

Questar number 3, FCV2021BBFF, F=FIELD MODEL, CV=CERVIT MIRROR, 2021=_______, BB=BROADBAND COATINGS, FF=CAM TYPE FOCUS

All three scopes were bought as parts only and I would like to make one complete scope. All  three scopes are missing parts or screws and one mirror has mold. I cleaned one spot of the mold and it takes the coating right off the mirror. I have used all three scopes and didn't notice any difference in the image even with the mold. Would any of them be more desirable than the others? Can someone help nail down the exact year of each scope?

Thanks

Ron Woodring



#10 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:12 PM

aIMG_0172.JPG IMG_0170.JPG



#11 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:15 PM

 I do like the bright purple best!

Ron



#12 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:26 PM

I think I have a 1969,1972 and 1974 if I read the info right at the questar web site



#13 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:29 PM

Best part of the day when I didn't have any parts left to install on any of the scopes. Still they are not complete but I can take care of that when I pick my keeper!



#14 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:33 PM

The black fitting on the axial port of the middle scope must have loc-tite on it as it wont come off and I didn't want to force it



#15 empikid

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 04:38 PM

I will be using a Quantum 4 mount on the telescope when I use it, its real big, a little overkill but very smooth and stable

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#16 cbwerner

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Posted 11 April 2020 - 07:09 PM

Reminds me of Ron Ravneberg's mount. R.I.P. 



#17 Rick McNelly

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Posted 13 April 2020 - 10:34 AM

I'm curious as to why my 1977 Cervit, BB, DP doesn't have the moon chart I see on other Questars.

​--Rick



#18 Optics Patent

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Posted 13 April 2020 - 01:35 PM

Rick, duplex models were typically offered with the intention that the barrel could be used as a field model and this without the Astro decor. I know that the dew shield was and is offered as an option and accessory with a star chart. But the reduced tune length means it’s both stretched in latitude and has a gap at the underside. I believe I’ve seen moon maps on a duplex barrel skin but those are uncommon.


Edited by Optics Patent, 13 April 2020 - 06:21 PM.

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#19 Rick McNelly

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Posted 13 April 2020 - 05:03 PM

Rick, duplex models were typically offered with the intention that the barre could be used as a field model and this without the Astro decor. I know that the dew shield was and is offered as an option and accessory with a star chart. But the reduced tune length means it’s both stretched in latitude and has a gap at the underside. I believe I’ve seen moon maps on a duplex barrel skin but those are uncommon.

 

Ben,

 

Thanks for explaining this!



#20 Orion68

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Posted 13 April 2020 - 06:16 PM

Based on this info mine is a 1981 - serial # 1-8126.



#21 Optics Patent

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Posted 13 April 2020 - 10:07 PM

Questar number 1, F958BBCM, F= FIELD MODEL, 958=________, BB=BROADBAND ,CM=CINEMA MODEL
Questar number 2, 9CVCMF814, 9=1969 or 1979, CV=CERVIT MIRROR, CM=CINEMA MODEL, F=FIELD MODEL, 814=_________
Questar number 3, FCV2021BBFF, F=FIELD MODEL, CV=CERVIT MIRROR, 2021=_______, BB=BROADBAND COATINGS, FF=CAM TYPE FOCUS
All three scopes were bought as parts only and I would like to make one complete scope. All three scopes are missing parts or screws and one mirror has mold. I cleaned one spot of the mold and it takes the coating right off the mirror. I have used all three scopes and didn't notice any difference in the image even with the mold. Would any of them be more desirable than the others? Can someone help nail down the exact year of each scope?
Thanks
Ron Woodring


Ron, a couple thoughts/

If the bad coatings are in a BB model it’s unfortunately irreparable. The regular coatings can be recoated.

One of those has a focus rod with two little pins stocking out of the rear cap. It also would use the cam focused in the clunky box.

The black adapters at the rear axial ports are notoriously hard to remove. Not sure if the factory superglued them but I have always tried to remove them. But careful not to crumple the control box. I probably had to use channnel lock wrench to remove the worst of mine, with lots of measures to avoid damaging the control box.

If you have minor missing parts like screws and knobs the factory can provide. Or message me in case I have something they don’t keep in stock.

I am always happy to spend a few bucks to fill my parts bin. I’d certainly consider your worst after you build
Up your favorite.

I’m dubious about the Cinema serial number. Could you photograph the serial numbers and share? I own two Cinemas and one (the designer’s own prototype) has no indication in the serial numbers and the other has a “...BB-C” ending to indicates cinema.

#22 Optics Patent

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Posted 14 April 2020 - 06:42 AM

There have indeed been moon maps on Duplex barrel skins.  The earliest I have seen is this 1982.  In the 1990s and since they seem to have been typical.


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#23 Slowpoke59

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Posted 11 July 2020 - 08:37 PM

I have an opportunity to buy an old 3.5, and cannot determine its age. The serial number on the bottom is: #1-952. If I understand it correctly, it was manufactured in 1961. Is that right?

 

It has a few cosmetic issues, and the mirror is chipped right next to the central tube,  but after all I've heard about Questars, I am seriously considering buying it.

 

Opinions? Should I post some pics?

 

Thanks, guys.



#24 Gregory Gross

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Posted 11 July 2020 - 09:10 PM

Yes, that would almost certainly be a 1961 Questar.

 

By all means, post some pictures! I'm sure we'd all love to see it and will be able to offer tips and opinions.

 

You may also consider calling Questar (215-862-5277) for an exact date of manufacture and for a check against their stolen Questar list, just to make sure it's not a hot one.

 

And by the way, welcome to the Questar forum and Cloudy Nights!



#25 Slowpoke59

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Posted 12 July 2020 - 11:34 AM

Here are some pics

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