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Meade Adventure Scope 80

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#351 Rock22

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Posted 17 January 2020 - 05:19 PM

There used to be a Dual Speed Crayford Focuser from Lunt with slightly less travel, which was about half the price of the GSO one. As mentioned in this post, it is supposed to work with the ST80, but I have not tried it personally ....

 

https://www.cloudyni...st80/?p=9152173

I bought 2 of the $70 Lunt 2" Crayford focusers (still available), and put one on the Meade ST80.  It fit this scope without any adjustments needed.  The other Lunt 2" Crayford is on my 102mm f/9.8 achro, but I needed to have a machinist at our university adjust the stock focuser adapter of the this scope to fit the focuser.

 

I have a 2" GSO dual-speed Crayford on the Orion ST80.

 

I like the 2" focusers, but I could have just used the 1.25" on the ST80s since I mostly use 1.25" eyepieces in those scopes.  The good thing about having only 2" focusers is not having to have duplicate filters and Barlows.  All of my scopes have 2" focusers now, except a little 70mm f/5.7 achro and a 114mm f/4.4 reflector.


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#352 Mike710

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Posted 17 January 2020 - 05:55 PM

Jason,

 

Thanks for your thoughts.  I have thought about all you posted, and yes, I think the best is to wait till I can get better eyepices, and that means with wider FOV. I have also decided to start with a low EP at first, either 32 > 24 range, as that´s also what everybody suggest to start with, and this scope seems to work better at low to mid range.  Then will see what else. 62º- 68º is the highest I´ll go with my budget with ES. I do like there overall gear.  Then a good 90º diagonal later.  The delema left is 2" or not, which means I would have to swap the focuser, all of which mainly would have to do with future purchase of a scope with a 2,5" focuser.  Just trying to think ahead...

 

Today I packed the scope and gear and hanged the backpack to my back, with a big smile on my face, I have done alot of hiking in my life and always smile when I strap a 30L backpack, but this had added excitement.  Reached my spotting area, unloaded and tried to set the RDF with a flag pole at about 500m.  The best part of all of that was how fast you can be set up, the bad part was the tripod!  As someone here stated, the included tripod migh only be good to hold your smartphone or tablet!

 

So, the first thing to get is a decent tripod, which I did.  Don´t think it will fit in the backpack but it has a carry bag.  Look´s solid to me, and it´s the fluid head type. Price for the build quality is spot on, plenty of vids on YT...

 

Ravelli AVT (video tripod):

https://www.amazon.e...79299303&sr=8-1

 

I´ll report back with my thoughts if anyone is interested.

 

Thank you all for making my new adventure more interesting as days go by.

 

Mike

 

--


Edited by Mike710, 17 January 2020 - 05:58 PM.

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#353 Rock22

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Posted 17 January 2020 - 07:16 PM

Jason,

 

Thanks for your thoughts.  I have thought about all you posted, and yes, I think the best is to wait till I can get better eyepices, and that means with wider FOV. I have also decided to start with a low EP at first, either 32 > 24 range, as that´s also what everybody suggest to start with, and this scope seems to work better at low to mid range.  Then will see what else. 62º- 68º is the highest I´ll go with my budget with ES. I do like there overall gear.  Then a good 90º diagonal later.  The delema left is 2" or not, which means I would have to swap the focuser, all of which mainly would have to do with future purchase of a scope with a 2,5" focuser.  Just trying to think ahead...

 

Today I packed the scope and gear and hanged the backpack to my back, with a big smile on my face, I have done alot of hiking in my life and always smile when I strap a 30L backpack, but this had added excitement.  Reached my spotting area, unloaded and tried to set the RDF with a flag pole at about 500m.  The best part of all of that was how fast you can be set up, the bad part was the tripod!  As someone here stated, the included tripod migh only be good to hold your smartphone or tablet!

 

So, the first thing to get is a decent tripod, which I did.  Don´t think it will fit in the backpack but it has a carry bag.  Look´s solid to me, and it´s the fluid head type. Price for the build quality is spot on, plenty of vids on YT...

 

Ravelli AVT (video tripod):

https://www.amazon.e...79299303&sr=8-1

 

I´ll report back with my thoughts if anyone is interested.

 

Thank you all for making my new adventure more interesting as days go by.

 

Mike

 

--

Definitely interested in staying posted about your experience with your ST80 setup.  The tripod looks very good for the ST80.  I have to carry my tripod in a longer bag as well, and like you I don't think it's a problem at all.  I got an ST80 for my best friend 2 years ago.  He was using 10x50 binoculars for stargazing.  He really likes the ST80 and still uses only the stock equipment (diagonal, eyepieces, and red dot finder), but not the tripod.  I let him use an EQ1 mount that I wasn't using.

 

As for 2" eyepieces, here is my take:

 

I like many of my 2" eyepieces, but it makes everything much heavier.  Like you said, the ST80 is so easy to set up.  With 2" eyepieces, the setup becomes much heavier.  That is why I went with the ES 52-deg eyepieces - lighter, reasonably priced (82-deg would be too expensive), and excellent build quality.  I wanted to begin building a 1.25" set again to keep things light.  I also don't even use a red dot finder or finder scope anymore with the ST80, but I still have them with me when I take out the scope.

 

When you get your larger scope that is not that portable, maybe think about 2" eyepieces then. That's why I would say start with the ES 24mm 68-deg as your low-power eyepiece.  It gives you the largest true field of view in a 1.25" eyepiece.  If you go longer than 24mm, you could then think about 2" eyepieces - like a 30mm.  A mid-power and high-power eyepiece would generally be 1.25" anyway, so no need to worry about such short focal length eyepieces in 2" format.

 

I think others will have more and better suggestions for eyepieces for the ST80.

 

Continue to enjoy the scope!  I'm smiling with you!


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#354 Kerbal01

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Posted 17 January 2020 - 11:21 PM

I have purchased tube rings for my Meade 80, the Orion #7370 rings from OPT. When they get here, how do I install them?. I have a 120mm Svbony dovetail to use instead of the super short default one.


Edited by Kerbal01, 17 January 2020 - 11:22 PM.


#355 Rock22

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Posted 20 January 2020 - 08:43 PM

I have purchased tube rings for my Meade 80, the Orion #7370 rings from OPT. When they get here, how do I install them?. I have a 120mm Svbony dovetail to use instead of the super short default one.


I tried to put rings on my Orion ST80, but the scope was the terrestrial version and the original dovetail bar could not be removed easily. I had to return the rings.

I came across a similar issue to why the Meade 80mm Adventure Scope, so I have no rings on this scope, too. I think there would be holes from the screws that attach the original dovetail bar to the scope. The holes would probably need to be filled in somehow.

Not sure how anyone else might have put rings on these particular scopes.

#356 hcf

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Posted 20 January 2020 - 09:34 PM

Not sure how anyone else might have put rings on these particular scopes.

I added rings to my Meade Adventure 80 and a dovetail, the dovetail attached to the rings goes over the small dovetail that the scope has (at least for the rings I bought from Agena Astro). So you don't need to remove the smaller dovetail. The rings I got came with bolts and washers. The only problem when buying rings and dovetails from different vendors, are the bolt/hole sizes. Some are M6 and some are 1/4-20 and they don't fit. If you use an Orion dovetail with Orion rings you should be ok.  For my first dovetail, I had to enlarge and countersink the holes on the dovetail and reverse the bolts.  For my second (longer) dovetail, I bought a SVBONY slotted dovetail, which fit the bolts from my rings and gives me better placement options.

 

You can zoom and look at the dovetails from the picture in my post 302.


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#357 BFaucett

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Posted 20 January 2020 - 09:48 PM

I tried to put rings on my Orion ST80, but the scope was the terrestrial version and the original dovetail bar could not be removed easily. I had to return the rings.

I came across a similar issue to why the Meade 80mm Adventure Scope, so I have no rings on this scope, too. I think there would be holes from the screws that attach the original dovetail bar to the scope. The holes would probably need to be filled in somehow.

Not sure how anyone else might have put rings on these particular scopes.

Mounting rings on the Meade Adventure Scope 80 is easy, at least with the rings I used. The original dovetail bar that comes with and is attached to the scope doesn't interfere with the new rings and the new, longer dovetail bar.

 

I used the "90mm ID Orion Telescope Tube Rings":

https://www.telescop...2160/p/7370.uts

 

And the "Agena V Series Vixen-Style Dovetail Bar - 180mm (7.1") Long # DR03" dovetail bar:

https://agenaastro.c...-bar-180mm.html

 

I did have to use some different bolts with this dovetail bar than the ones that came with the rings. Not a big deal. The bolt head was too large to fit inside the recessed slot on the new dovetail bar. I used some Allen head bolts with washers.

 

Note: It is important to make sure the dovetail bar you decide to use will accommodate the needed ring spacing. 

 

Bob F. smile.gif

 

 

gallery_230527_10827_319183.jpg

 

gallery_230527_10827_270199.jpg

 

gallery_230527_10827_81272.jpg


Edited by BFaucett, 21 January 2020 - 05:56 AM.

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#358 Redbetter

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 12:55 AM

Removing the attached dovetail is no big deal.  It was actually necessary since I also moved the baffle plate back to prevent any aperture loss and minimize vignetting in 2" mode.  The rear screw would have been in the way of the baffle plate's movement and new position.  I used a bit of transparent packing tape to cover the holes, and darkened the spots with a sharpie. 

 

I use the same rings as above, but with the Astronomics 7" Astro-Tech universal dovetail.  It has a long slot with a wide recess that works well with hex head bolts and lock washers so that they don't stick out.   The long slot allows me to move the dovetail back to where the focuser knob will just clear when rotated. 


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#359 jcj380

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 01:21 PM

I bought Orion rings, but haven't gotten around to putting them on yet.  I just use this:

 

https://www.amazon.c...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

but I'm not putting much load on - just the OTA, stock focuser, 1.25-in EP and cheap RDF.


Edited by jcj380, 21 January 2020 - 01:22 PM.

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#360 M57Guy

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 09:00 PM

Having no intention of using the supplied tripod, I removed the stock (1.75" long) dovetail and replaced that with a 4" version, without having to drill any new holes.

I've since bought a pair of rings from Agena, but I haven't brought myself to un-install the 4" dovetail, which seems to work great with my setup.

Kinda wish I had thought of the idea of having rings before switching dovetails, or never thought of rings at all. shrug.gif

Either way, a larger dovetail, or rings seems like a vast improvement if you wish to forego the supplied packpack-size tripod.



#361 Kerbal01

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 11:12 PM

I purchased a Svbony 120mm dovetail months ago. Rings arrive Thursday. I'll try putting the rings on over the existing dovetail first (I'm going to need to rotate the OTA it to get the RDF on the top anyway. 


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#362 M57Guy

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 05:36 AM

I also moved the baffle plate back to prevent any aperture loss and minimize vignetting in 2" mode.  The rear screw would have been in the way of the baffle plate's movement and new position.


I didn't realize the baffle plate was moveable/adjustable.

If I remember correctly, mine was soldered/spot welded in place.

Please tell us more about this procedure.

I'm interested, but not interested in wrecking my little 80mm during a baffle plate adjustment procedure gone bad. lol.gif

 

And, if the new position of your baffle plate is where the rear dovetail screw originally was, I'm guessing you moved it backward about an inch.

Did this help/minimize vignetting in 2" mode?



#363 Redbetter

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 03:45 PM

I didn't realize the baffle plate was moveable/adjustable.

If I remember correctly, mine was soldered/spot welded in place.

Please tell us more about this procedure.

I'm interested, but not interested in wrecking my little 80mm during a baffle plate adjustment procedure gone bad. lol.gif

 

And, if the new position of your baffle plate is where the rear dovetail screw originally was, I'm guessing you moved it backward about an inch.

Did this help/minimize vignetting in 2" mode?

They aren't soldered or welded, at least not on the samples of Meade AS 80 f/5 and Orion ST80 that I have done this modification on.  They are plates with folded fins so that the fins are folded back and pressing against the walls holding the baffle in position. 

 

Procedure I used to move the baffle (going from memory):

  • Before starting I had already removed the dovetail and determined what the maximum inward movement would be with my 2" focuser's draw tube in the full inward position. 
  • I stripped down the tube by removing focuser and objective (dovetail was already out.) 
  • I placed the tube vertical with the focuser end on the floor with something like cardboard or wood in between, so as not to damage the edge of the tube. 
  • I pulled a suitably sized empty food can from the recycling, cleaned it, then wrapped some paper towel around the base (secured with rubber band IIRC).  The diameter has to be wide enough to span the baffle opening with considerable room to spare, but narrow enough to fit in the OTA well. 
  • I inserted the paper towel covered end inside the tube pressing evenly against the baffle plate. 
  • I placed a flat piece of wood over the top rim of the can and tapped the wood/can down with a rubber mallet.  I used just enough force to get it to move, but not too rapidly.  The baffle can tilt a little at times because it will release on one side and catch a little on the other but tapping to one side or the other corrects this. 
  • I removed the can a few times to check progress.  I might have also slipped the focuser in the back once or twice to check how much clearance was left.
  • Once I had it where I wanted it I blew out any bits that had gotten dislodged, and I blackened the exposed original baffle location with a sharpie, then I reassembled. 

It is roughly a inch of movement, which at f/5 works out to ~5mm wider fully illuminated field than it started with if I am estimating correctly.  From what I have been told and what I have seen, the standard 80 f/5 set up results in a very small fully illuminated field, even in 1.25" mode.  (I recall someone saying it might even be in effect slightly stopped down...but that might have changed over time/samples.)  This is essentially the best that can be done to maximize field illumination with the existing baffle and focuser draw tubes I have.

 

My estimation is that Ideally there would be another much wider baffle close to the objective to provide an optimal layout so that glare reflections at the wall near the objective would be effectively  blocked.

 

I have never done the flocking thing to improve contrast.  An 80 f/5 might be a good candidate for that.


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#364 M57Guy

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:49 PM

Much thanks for the detailed description of the baffle relocation procedure. waytogo.gif

My recollection of the baffle being fastened was from memory while replacing the dovetail.

I guess there's reason to make use of the rings after all since moving the baffle rearward will involve displacing the OEM holes for the dovetail. 

 

Clear skies!



#365 Kerbal01

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Posted 23 January 2020 - 10:17 PM

Got the 120mm dovetail installed with the tube rings. 

 

Q3lZnVW.jpg


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#366 jcj380

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Posted 24 January 2020 - 08:16 AM

Re: eyepieces, I only have one AT Paradigm (25mm) along with an assortment of Orions and a couple of Vixen SLVs, but the AT works well with my ST80. Plus they’re only $60, so you could build an assortment rather inexpensively. YMMV.

I’m thinking of trying an AT 15mm to compare with my Expanse 15mm. I can always sell one or the other.

#367 Hamlet

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Posted 25 January 2020 - 09:44 AM

This is a really great scope! Thanks to a friend who gift me some good EP's I can be able to see more! I think that a great combination is a 32 plossl with a 2X barlow, with that the views of the sky will be so beautiful!




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