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Celestron Firstcope 80

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#1 rubenmch

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 07:25 AM

Hello,

 

I saw this used Celestron Firstcope 80 listed for about $50 USD. Has been listed for several months so probably can get it for less.

 

I currently own an Orion Observer II 70mm f/10 alt/az refractor and I'm having a lot of shakiness when using mid/high magnification. 

 

Is the mount from the Celestron Firstscope 80 a good stable mount or it also a cheap shaky mount like the one I have? If the ota is not in good condition would it be worth it to get it to mount my Orion telescope in that mount? Would it help reduce the shakiness?

 

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3967618088.jpg



#2 RobertMaples

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 07:54 AM

I can't speak to the rigidity of the mount, but  I notice that it does have slow motion controls.  I would think that alone would be a big improvement.



#3 Jeff Struve

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 08:07 AM

I dont think that there will be any improvement... I'm also not sure that there is a cost effective way to use your Orion on that mount/tripod... not sure tho...

 

In any case, I recomend saving up your money...



#4 rolo

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 08:18 AM

Get it, clean it, enjoy it.


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#5 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 08:37 AM

Get it, clean it, enjoy it.

 

:waytogo:

 

This First Scope 80 is definitely a serious step up from the Orion Observer 70. I have owned several of these. These were made in Japan by Vixen and have quality optics and mechanicals.  

 

The mount is quite stable but is best suited for terrestrial viewing because the scope sits on top of the mount rather than alongside it where it can be balanced.  But with the wooden tripod and slow motion controls it's definite workable for astronomy . 

 

The slow motion controls use what's called tangent arms,  levers with that actuated with threads.  There's limited but sufficient travel. Every so often you'll need to reset them. 

 

Optically these 80 mm F/11.3 achromats are quite good.  Some chromatic aberration but its manageable and it should be sharp.  I think these scopes were $400-$500 new back in the late 80s-early 90s.  

 

$50 is a very good deal , if it were near me,  I'd buy it just to give to someone in need of a good scope. 

 

1984918-Celestron 80mm.jpg
 
Jon

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#6 rogeriomagellan

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 09:05 AM

I was about to ask if the Japanese optics wouldn't make it a worth purchase by itself when I ran across Jon Isaacs's post. 

 

I know that some ED refractors are quite affordable these days like the AT102ED. One can get it brand new for $599. Good 8" Dobsonian telescopes are a bang for the buck and not a hassle to easy to set up or to use them. But many guys claim that it is a great portable telescope and good enough for planetary observing. In my VERY humble opinion, the whole issue here seems to be aperture. Since you are acquainted with a 70mm refractor, you wouldn't have trouble to use it but what would be the benefits in terms of aperture? 

 

https://www.astronom...ota_p20548.aspx


Edited by rogeriomagellan, 14 September 2018 - 09:07 AM.


#7 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 09:13 AM

Roger:

 

This Firstscope 80 is $50. In my mind,  it's a no-brainer to just buy it if the lens looks decent . It's a much better scope than the Observer 70.

 

Jon


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#8 Jeff Struve

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 09:22 AM

 

waytogo.gif

 

This First Scope 80 is definitely a serious step up from the Orion Observer 70. I have owned several of these. These were made in Japan by Vixen and have quality optics and mechanicals.  

 

The mount is quite stable but is best suited for terrestrial viewing because the scope sits on top of the mount rather than alongside it where it can be balanced.  But with the wooden tripod and slow motion controls it's definite workable for astronomy . 

 

The slow motion controls use what's called tangent arms,  levers with that actuated with threads.  There's limited but sufficient travel. Every so often you'll need to reset them. 

 

Optically these 80 mm F/11.3 achromats are quite good.  Some chromatic aberration but its manageable and it should be sharp.  I think these scopes were $400-$500 new back in the late 80s-early 90s.  

 

$50 is a very good deal , if it were near me,  I'd buy it just to give to someone in need of a good scope. 

 

 
 
Jon

 

It's interesting to me how back in the 80's that a 'first scope' was in the $400 range yet today, 30 years later, folks looking for a 'first scope' aka beginners scope are hard pressed to spend $200... 

 

Off topic, but I don't get it!



#9 rubenmch

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 09:28 AM

I got in contact with the seller and she told me she has lowered the price to $25, but she says the lens has some kind of watermark like stains behind/inside the lens which I think can be seen in the picture. I'm guessing that's probably not fixable/cleanable right?

 

3967618088.jpg


Edited by rubenmch, 14 September 2018 - 09:28 AM.


#10 Binojunky

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 09:50 AM

I had one of these,the scope was fine other than stuck with a 1.25" focuser which is not relevant when you are new to the hobby, the problem was the mount,  you had to tighten the centre bolt down hard to stop drifting and that in turn made the slow motions hard to turn.  Also the slow motions ran out of travel at the most inconvenient moments, this OTA was also available on the Polaris GEM, a lot better set up but hey for $25 its worth getting as long as the objective is in good shape, the photos show it to be gucky, is that dirt or the coatings degrading?, D.


Edited by Binojunky, 14 September 2018 - 09:50 AM.


#11 Jeff Struve

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 10:00 AM

I was thinking that the primary looked gritty and the 'water spot' bugged me... so I was going off the value of the mount for use with the Orion OTA the OP has...



#12 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 10:20 AM

I got in contact with the seller and she told me she has lowered the price to $25, but she says the lens has some kind of watermark like stains behind/inside the lens which I think can be seen in the picture. I'm guessing that's probably not fixable/cleanable right?

 

 

It doesn't look like fungus so I would guess it would clean up but if it didn't, I think it would still provide quite good views. $25, it's pretty hard to go wrong.

Go look at it. Look through it at a tree truck and compare it to your observer 70.

jon

 



#13 paul m schofield

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Posted 14 September 2018 - 02:07 PM

I have one of these older OTA's and the optics are very good. The lens cell is metal, not plastic like newer Chinese made ones. The cell is relatively easy to take the lens out to be cleaned but be sure to mark the edges of each lens so they can be lined up when put back in the cell. Make sure you get the lenses and the thin foil spacers between them in the proper order, too. Ask for help in the Refractor Forum before you start. $25 is a steal. :-)

Edited by paul m schofield, 14 September 2018 - 02:09 PM.

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