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What was it like observing in the 60’s?

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#226 Chuck Hards

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 11:00 AM

That's interesting.  I wonder if it was sold that way, or it was added later by the owner?

#227 Geo31


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Posted 07 December 2018 - 11:54 AM

That's interesting.  I wonder if it was sold that way, or it was added later by the owner?

A Google image search turned up one or two more like this.  If I had to wager, I'd bet that VERY early on it was offered as an option (easy enough to add really).  When did the Deluxe scopes fade away?  My guess is that would be the logical cross-over point.  If I were the owner of the business, I certainly wouldn't want to carry essentially duplicate inventory.


I must say, in restomodding mine, I've come to really appreciate the efficiency with which they designed and built these scopes (RV-6).  The only real change I wish they had made was to include Oilite bearings in the shaft housings.  That said, it would have put the RV-6 well of what I call the "reach for your wallet" price range.  Each casting would have required more material.  Each shaft housing would have required at least two more operations to complete.

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#228 caheaton



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Posted 07 December 2018 - 01:07 PM

I started with astronomy in the early 70's.  My first "scope" was my father's 7x50 binoculars....still remember the first time I scanned the Milky Way with them....SO MANY STARS!  I just stared...it was mesmerizing!  For the Moon, I used my father's zoom spotting scope (he was an avid target shooter), I'm guessing it was a 60mm of around F/8 or thereabouts.  


A little later for Christmas I received my first "real" telescope, a Tasco 11TE-5 (I'm pretty sure it was Christmas 1976).  That scope really opened up the universe to me and many an hour were spent taking in the brighter Messiers, planets and the Moon.  Did some white light solar as well using the dangerous glass filter that screwed into the ep (lucky I can still see, but that's another story).  My only ep's were the 6 & 20mm Huygens that came with the scope (plus a long 2x barlow).  A few years later I purchased a Meade 4mm ortho that I used primarily for the Moon.  I was happy with those ep's and had never heard of a plossl ;-)  .  That ortho was my prized "premium" ep :-)  .


My sources of information then were S&T and library books.  My atlas was a small hardback guidbook (sorry I don't recall title, but still have that book) that included an atlas that featured photographic negative images of the sky with stars and dso's labeled (annoyingly, all objects were labeled by NGC number, including the Messier objects...you had to cross reference the M number from a table in the appendix).


I even dabbled in imaging...I would take photos of the Moon & Sun by pointing my Dad's Nikon at the ep and tripping the shutter (took a steady hand and fast film).  For deep sky, I would use B&W film and his Polaroid Land camera (Polaroid film was much faster than 35mm...ASA 3000 if I recall correctly).  I would use that camera to capture constellation shots of the brighter constellations using a remote shutter release and tripod.


Sky conditions were better, but I was hampered by the neighbor across the street who erected a mercury vapor lamp alongside his barn about the time I received that Tasco...it lit up the whole front yard and that was the only spot that afforded a clear view of most of the sky.  Despite that, M31 was an easy naked eye target.


Today I have significantly better equipment and access to information.  Times have changed, but I still enjoy it just as much.

Edited by caheaton, 07 December 2018 - 01:08 PM.

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#229 CCD-Freak


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Posted 07 December 2018 - 01:14 PM

Well, it looks sort of like the Deluxe Dynascope slo-mo, but it's not.  The Deluxe had the control come out of the top of the box.  Apparently the very very early RV-6 had a different slo-mo as shown in this photo from Company 7:




Here's another view of it.  Interestingly, notice the rotating rings:




Perhaps this IS a 6" Deluxe?


[edit]  Isn't this your image Chuck?




Looks like it is a Deluxe Dynascope slo-mo.  The 6" and 4" just had a smaller mount.

Walter got his RV6 somewhere around the 1967 to 1969 time frame.  I am pretty sure he got the DEC slow mo when he ordered his scope.  He was not much of a tinkerer and it was on the scope the first time I saw it so I don't think he added it after the purchase.  How does this fall in the sequence?  I can't remember what years the RV6 was sold.




John Love



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#230 Michael Covington

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Posted 07 December 2018 - 05:24 PM

I got my RV-6 in 1970 and remember that it was still being sold as late as 1979.  I had gotten out of astronomy and back into it and thought about getting another RV-6 but opted for a Celestron 5 for portability.  I must be one of the few really serious observers who used and liked a C5.

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#231 Astrolite



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Posted 08 December 2018 - 08:06 PM

My first exposure to astronomy was in the early 70's. A friend of mine, whose father was a doctor, had a 60mm refractor. I can't even tell you what brand it was. On several occasions we drove 10 or 15 miles due West of the city of Toledo, OH., out into the country, and setup along the edge of the road. There was a lot less traffic in those days and the skies were much darker. I can remember spending evenings out there looking at Jupiter, Saturn and double stars and not having hardly any cars pass by. One evening a police cruiser did happen by and of course the officer was curious what we were up to. He pulled over and walked up to us and we showed him some views of the heavens. He told us to have a good evening and went on his way. Fortunately he never noticed what we had been smoking or the fact that a couple hundred yards off the road some of our other friends were skinny dipping in a farmers pond. wink.png 


Those experiences prompted me to take an astronomy course at the University of Toledo. But it wasn't until the mid 80's, after my move to Pennsylvania, that I got my first telescope, a C-8, and joined the Astronomical Society of Harrisburg. Even then I had some pretty decent skies for observing right from my own back yard. I still only live 2 to 3 miles from the Naylor Observatory but alas, the skies just aren't the same anymore.  

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