I have fond memories of using a beautiful 4.25” refractor made by Thomas Cooke in 1880, on a superb bronze mount with clockwork drive, fully functional and optically superb. A real classic in every respect.
A few weeks ago a friend set up a Vixen 60mm f/15 achro on the observing field. A classic scope, and a very nice reminder of how good an achromatic refractor could be.
Yet that scope is not on anyone’s radar as a “classic”, at least on CN. But I see on CN so many cheap department-store 60mm refractors are considered “classics”, even though 50 years ago they were considered rubbish, and even now you can still find the same for sale for $20, mass produced in China.
While Vixen is still very much alive, it doesn’t make those scopes anymore. Conversely many companies that made fine scopes are long gone, yet not recognised as “classics”.
So what makes a “classic”. “Classic” ? Black and white paint job ? Spindly wooden tripod and a hopelessly inadequate EQ mount, in black lacquer ?
How old does a Celestron SCT have to be to qualify (apparently pre 1980) ? Do any Meade SCTs qualify (apparently not) ? Does.a 1957 Questar qualify (apparently not) ?
Why are Unitrons classics, despite rather poor quality control of their objectives ?
Are Intes maks “classics” (apparently not) ?
But Zeiss... that I understand ...
Edited by luxo II, 18 April 2019 - 05:46 AM.