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Get an APO and Ignore the Old Scopes?

classic equipment observing optics
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#26 Esso2112

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 07:28 PM

 

 

The issue I see between the APO's and the vintage scopes is the focal length.  The FCT-100 has a foal length of 640mm compared to 1500mm with the Unitron.  I can use longer eyepieces for a more comfortable viewing experience with the classic vs the APO. For wide fields, the FCT-100 is great, but I have to Barlow it or use really short fl eyepieces for high mag viewing.

Please don't make the assumption that an apochromat is automatically *always* short focus, just because it can be, because it isn't. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark 

 

Thomas, very true.  Most would consider an f8 longer focus and slow. The FS-152 is f8 with a focal length of 1218mm. It is a very long tube, and though light at 25lbs, requires a hefty mount to really enjoy.  For modern APO's, f8 or longer are rare.  The FC-100 at f10 is a good example. The 4" Nikon would be another.  


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#27 Esso2112

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 07:37 PM

JW - I think you will enjoy the 6" APM.  As has been stated by others, the 6" APO is just about the perfect balance between focal length, weight, and light gathering, the flat field with pinpoint stars, and inky black background.  Lovely views.  

 

For all the reflector fans, I have had newtonians and mewlons and I really hate diffraction spikes.  The Mewlon 210 gave amazing views and is the best 8" reflector I've looked through, but the diffraction spikes just killed me when I looked at Jupiter.  



#28 clamchip

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 08:12 PM

Wow JW a 6 inch f/8 ED scope sounds sweet!

It will probably take center stage I'm sure but I know you, you're not going to 

ignore your babies!

Please let us know what you think of it!

 

Robert


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#29 Bomber Bob

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 08:21 PM

I'll post my reviews & such in the APM 152 ED APO Club thread --> https://www.cloudyni...52-ed-apo-club/  --> EXCEPT for my Old Scope to New Scope comparisons.


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#30 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:28 PM

"Why haul out the old rig when the new one performs as well and is easier to use?"

 

I would like to change that to,

 

"Why haul out the new rig when the old one performs as well and is easier to use?"

 

That's never happened to me.. new ED/apos are shorter and better mechanically than the old scopes, the focusers are way better. Easier to mount on a stable mount, more comfortable viewing..  I think Thomas's slow focal ratio apos are old scopes, not new scopes.

 

At one time I had a number of classic scopes.  The biggest thing I had was a 12.5 inch Meade RG, I had a couple of RV-6s, some old refractors, mostly 60mm and 76mm.  My favorites were my Asahi-Pentaxs 60mm x 800mm.  But they're all gone.  An 80mm F/7 FPL-53 doublet is such an easy scope to use and provides excellent views (for an 80mm) and it just so versatile.  I cannot think of any of the old scopes that would be pretty easy to haul a half mile or so and yet provide near perfect views...

 

6051962-Canyon de Chelley Francis.jpg

 

Jon


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#31 Bomber Bob

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:35 PM

I cannot think of any of the old scopes that would be pretty easy to haul a half mile or so and yet provide near perfect views...

 

I can -- a 60 year old Classic, too:

 

Questar on D&S Tripod S91.jpg


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#32 Jeff B

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:36 PM

I'm glad you got the APM Bomber and I too would like to see your DPAC results (!).

 

I do love my old AP triplets, great visual scopes...and they can test well too.

 

Jeff

Attached Thumbnails

  • Blue Tube C.jpg
  • AP 6 F9 Double Pass.jpg

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#33 Jeff B

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:42 PM

Here's the 178 F9 & DPAC.

 

I do love the simple classic look of the APM 152 F8.  Just lovely.

 

Jeff

 

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • 178 F9 B.jpg
  • Incandescant, outside A, 130 LPI.jpg
  • 178 F9, Green, inside focus B, 130 LPI.jpg

Edited by Jeff B, 02 December 2017 - 10:45 PM.

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#34 Stew44

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:48 PM

I cannot think of any of the old scopes that would be pretty easy to haul a half mile or so and yet provide near perfect views...

 

I can -- a 60 year old Classic, too:

 

attachicon.gifQuestar on D&S Tripod S91.jpg

Hear, hear!  (or is that here, here! ?)


Edited by Stew44, 02 December 2017 - 10:49 PM.


#35 Stew44

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:52 PM

Here's the 178 F9 & DPAC.

 

I do love the simple classic look of the APM 152 F8.  Just lovely.

 

Jeff

And that 178 on the G-11 brings back some fine memories (only mine was white and still had the U. S. Naval Observatory property of sticker on it.) grin.gif


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#36 Bomber Bob

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:54 PM

My 58 Questar Standard is one Old Scope that'll stay no matter how great the new APOs turn out to be.

 

[Drum Roll... my 12000th CN post.]


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#37 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:57 PM

I cannot think of any of the old scopes that would be pretty easy to haul a half mile or so and yet provide near perfect views...

 

I can -- a 60 year old Classic, too:

 

I think the context of this thread is refractors..  otherwise, other than the narrow field of view and rather massive tripod, I guess the Questar would qualify.  I don't think though I would ever choose it over a decent 80mm apo for anything.

 

Jon



#38 Jeff B

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:59 PM

My 58 Questar Standard is one Old Scope that'll stay no matter how great the new APOs turn out to be.

 

[Drum Roll... my 12000th CN post.]

Now that's something to cheer about  Congrats!



#39 Jeff B

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Posted 02 December 2017 - 11:00 PM

 

Here's the 178 F9 & DPAC.

 

I do love the simple classic look of the APM 152 F8.  Just lovely.

 

Jeff

And that 178 on the G-11 brings back some fine memories (only mine was white and still had the U. S. Naval Observatory property of sticker on it.) grin.gif

 

So what happened to it?



#40 Stew44

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 07:17 AM

 

I cannot think of any of the old scopes that would be pretty easy to haul a half mile or so and yet provide near perfect views...

 

I can -- a 60 year old Classic, too:

 

I think the context of this thread is refractors..  otherwise, other than the narrow field of view and rather massive tripod, I guess the Questar would qualify.  I don't think though I would ever choose it over a decent 80mm apo for anything.

 

Jon

 

For use as you pictured the Questar Field model on a simple ball mount-carbon fiber tripod would be easier to lug a half mile (or two).  Yes, a little over a degree FOV limited, so broad canyon vistas not really in the cards (but would bring much more satisfying views of any wildlife present); and certainly falls within scope of thread ("do you tend to ignore your old scopes").



#41 Stew44

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 07:29 AM

 

 

And that 178 on the G-11 brings back some fine memories (only mine was white and still had the U. S. Naval Observatory property of sticker on it.) grin.gif

 

So what happened to it?

 

First, the Starfires are absolutely first rate visual APOs as are the EDTs!  But for the majority of my viewing here in Colorado I remain convinced that anything over 5" is pretty much wasted except for that less than occasional night of exceptional seeing.  The 178 Starfire, 155 EDT, 152 Super Planetary, Tak FS 152, TMB 152 all moved on to others.  As did a couple of 130 EDFs, a TOA 130, and probably twice foolishly, two 130 f/8.3 EDTs, which if not for too much invested for value received I would have kept over the Star 12ED.  Not really a question of downsizing in the normal sense, but right-sizing for my everyday viewing conditions.  The G-11 also moved along and was replaced by a very nice G-9. 

 

My everyday viewing conditions actually enhance the value of my 75-100mm Classics as much more in the "just right" category for planetary targets in my neck of the woods.


Edited by Stew44, 03 December 2017 - 08:13 AM.

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#42 bobhen

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 08:23 AM

The views in the 6 will (or should) be better but you will still use smaller scopes especially when you don’t want to set up the 6”. The 6” F 8 will be a pretty good size telescope.

 

Seeing can also mitigate resolving power so you might find that you set up the bigger scope on nights when it has the best chance to resolve to its limit and use the smaller scopes on nights of iffy seeing or conditions.

 

Bob


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#43 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 09:17 AM

For use as you pictured the Questar Field model on a simple ball mount-carbon fiber tripod would be easier to lug a half mile (or two).  Yes, a little over a degree FOV limited, so broad canyon vistas not really in the cards (but would bring much more satisfying views of any wildlife present); and certainly falls within scope of thread ("do you tend to ignore your old scopes").

 

 

So you are suggesting the Questar would bring more satisfying views of any wild life present than a very good quality 80 mm apo refractor..  That doesn't compute. 

 

Jon



#44 Stew44

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 10:09 AM

 

For use as you pictured the Questar Field model on a simple ball mount-carbon fiber tripod would be easier to lug a half mile (or two).  Yes, a little over a degree FOV limited, so broad canyon vistas not really in the cards (but would bring much more satisfying views of any wildlife present); and certainly falls within scope of thread ("do you tend to ignore your old scopes").

 

 

So you are suggesting the Questar would bring more satisfying views of any wild life present than a very good quality 80 mm apo refractor..  That doesn't compute. 

 

Jon

 

Image scale.  Questar birders are renown for that very purpose and they are simply a Field model with better finder built in.  And in a Grand Canyon environment, you're not likely to have something all that close.  Hard to achieve image scale with an f/7 scope unless you're barlowing it up.  But, different strokes ....  wink.gif



#45 deSitter

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 10:16 AM

Not just an optical phenomenon. There is something sensual about setting up and using classic equipment. The stuff still radiates the energy and dedication of the people who made it.

 

-drl


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#46 akman1955

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 10:20 AM

Umm, waytogo.gif  I like them all please grin.gif drool5.gif old and new. love.gif popcorn.gif



#47 konrad

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 10:32 AM

Interesting JW I sold my Tasco 7TE-5 recently as I was not using it but even my wife almost cried when the new owner collected , the 10 TE will follow shortly as it just sits in its box , I am not a collector and these long refractors although beautiful and give great views are somewhat impractical , I recently got a Skyprodigy 130 newt(used) for the money from the 7TE and our grand kids love it  they 8 and 11 are now using it all the time which makes me extremely happy


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#48 Astrojensen

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 11:09 AM

 

That's never happened to me.. new ED/apos are shorter and better mechanically than the old scopes, the focusers are way better. Easier to mount on a stable mount, more comfortable viewing..  I think Thomas's slow focal ratio apos are old scopes, not new scopes.

My long focus apochromats are indeed old. One of them is VERY old. But there were f/12 apos made relatively recently (Nikon, Apomax) and probably some long ones we've not heard about.  

 

About the focusers, then modern ones are usually way better than the average ones from the 60'ies, 70'ies and 80'ies, but they are usually NOT better than the very best ones from even a century ago, unless you're ready to fork out $500 for just the focuser and go premium via A-P or Feathertouch. The 100 year old Zeiss brass focusers, in particular, are extremely smooth and stable, if well cared for. They handle heavy loads, like binoviewers with heavy eyepieces, in a relaxed and effortless manner that most modern chinese crayfords can only dream of. The best japanese focusers, like the Nikons, are similarly well made and extraordinarily smooth. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark


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#49 starman876

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 11:23 AM

What I have noticed is that once you get your hands on a really good APO the same aperture as that classic you love the classic is quickly forgotten about.   Then you go on and buy a larger APO and soon all you are using are the APO scopes.   


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#50 Stew44

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 11:29 AM

 

My long focus apochromats are indeed old. One of them is VERY old. But there were f/12 apos made relatively recently (Nikon, Apomax) and probably some long ones we've not heard about.  


 

The Apomax is a Super APO bringing four colors to focus.  Dick Buchroder (sp?) designed and Fred Mrozak implemented. Big and heavy.  One of those that I left off the list of 5" scopes I no longer own.  That scope did provide me the most memorable visual image of Saturn at Deadman, west of Ft. Collins in one of those rare nights of perfect seeing.  Morning came way too soon that night.


Edited by Stew44, 03 December 2017 - 11:29 AM.

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