Good evening, all:
Thanks to a good friend in the St. Pete Astronomy Club, I was offered the opportunity to purchase a Cave 1959 10" f/7.1 off of facebook marketplace of all places for $200. I jumped at the chance because I currently have a 16" f/4.5 truss dob I made back in 2006, but of course it doesn't track.
I built a 12.5" f/6 in 1996 that had a Nova Optical mirror with QSP coatings. I loved that scope and there are times I miss the sharpness of an f/6, so an f/7.1 instantly was appealing. Prior to the 12.5" I had a 10" f/4.5 Meade dob and a 6" f/6 Starfinder EQ. There was a time during college I worked at a local museum in the planetarium where we also did telescope observing on Friday and Saturday nights, and I really enjoyed their 12.5" f/6 Meade research grade EQ. All of these scopes had aspects I really liked, so having a scope that tracks and has a long focal length were all things I was hoping to enjoy again.
I quickly found this forum and the Cave website, and started looking through many threads to ascertain the model and how to even start a restoration. I think I'm pretty handy, as I made two scopes, but metal work is something I'm not entirely comfortable or knowledgeable about. So I will be doing a lot of reading and relying on your expert advice through this process if you're willing to help.
I will attach a bunch of pictures, but I did a basic mirror cleaning and inspection. There seems to be minimal rust and the both the primary and secondary will need to be recoated (not a shock). I read enough to know that this mirror has the potential to be a planet buster. I don't know if the motor works, as the cord has been cut. The previous owner got the scope from, I believe, the original owner. The fact that he still has the manual and eyepieces is amazing to me. I'd like to restore this properly so I'm not going to rush it. All advice is most welcome.
Update: I'm trying to upload all the photos I took with my phone, but they are all over the limit.
Edited by Guy Earle, 20 November 2018 - 11:40 PM.