I considered posting this in the Cats Forum, but these are old enough to fit the definition of 'classic', and one of them is not a Cat, so here I go.
Some of you may remember that about a year and a half ago, I asked here about a 4-inch Unitron donated to me by a nearby university to help me raise funds for our public observatory. It was not being used anymore, and they wanted it gone. I then did the same thing a few months ago with a 1960s Questar. Well, I'm back again, but this time with some scopes that are not nearly as sought after: two Meade SCTs (an 8-inch and a 10-inch) and a heavy duty Meade GEM that comes with a Franken-Newt: an 8-inch, f/8 reflector with a Parks tube and primary, and other bits from elsewhere (if I recall correctly, which I can check on). I'm going to include several photos, and I hope folks can help me with several questions.
1. Just what do I have?
I've never actually owned a forked SCT, let alone a Meade, so I'd like to know the proper terminology. Both the Meades are too old to have go-to mounts, so just what are they? Both say 'Quartz Drive' on them, but the 8-inch has a dual axis hand controller, with the electronics in the base. The 10-inch just has an input for a 115 volt power cord, with no wiring going toward the arms for Dec control. LX3? LX5? Something else?
The GEM is amazingly heavy, and I've seen them talked about here before, but don't know just what it's called. Did these come in more than one size, like other maker's mounts?
2. Any hints at value? I know that some folks don't like getting into that, but these are mine only in the sense that I''m going to use the funds I get for them to purchase items for our observatory. I'd like to get a fair price, but I'd also like to get these to be used again, so I'm not out to make a ton. The photos will show what they come with (wedges, finders, etc.) and that they are in okay condition, though some things might not, or will not, show up:
-- Both SCT tripods have pretty significant rust on them.
-- There is a film on the inside of the corrector plate of the 10-inch (which I'd rather not mess with). You can also see in the same photo that there is a bowed bit on a gasket.
-- We have not been able to test the control box for the 10-inch since we are missing a cord. (We do have one cord, though, and tomorrow I should be able to test the box with it, and then check the scopes's drive with it, since they both use the same cord. I only now thought of that.)
-- The optics on the 8-inch look great. The electronics on the 8-inch are working fine (I think, though I've only tested them with my ear, not on the sky).
-- Both drives on the GEM work, but the control box does not: You can plug the mount directly into the wall, and it will track in RA. Or, you can plug the control box into the wall, and the mount into it, but then the Dec drive works, but the RA does not. So, we know it's the control box that has the problem. My son opened it up, and found that the RA drive has 50 volts going to it, so it's not simply a connection problem, and he wonders if that is the problem. He's much more knowledgeable about electronics than I am, but didn't want to mess with it if there is a known fix for this issue, soooo, question number...
3. Does anyone know if this is a known issue with theses control boxes, and what the solution might be; or where I might turn for an answer?
If anyone has any questions for me, I'd be glad to try to answer them!
Here's the 8-inch: