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Novice with a 50th saying hello!

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#1 Iceni

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 01:27 PM

What a fantastic forum! Recently had the luck to purchase a lovely 50th Anniversary Questar from 2004.

Been on the lookout for sometime since stupidly selling an earlier 60’s model a few years back when money was urgently required and had regretted it ever since.

Recent auction purchase and this baby luckily came my way.

082db3ae158e10182536c2e3649491e9.jpg

4f993dc555069e8cdd7a431fa525cb30.jpg

4c652f2dcc5b50350c1a98c7c24f141b.jpg

22709364aaa0c1eafd6a9a3166f49126.jpg

99c5bf39fa3e30f70699ccd9c76ffc9f.jpg

Over the moon would be an understatement. Always loved the engineering, form, function and capabilities of this amazing telescope.

Seller didn’t believe the Powerguide was working but luckily it does ( just needs a new lead as one of the connectors locking clip doesn’t lock in place very well, can come loose).

Also, is the solar view finder meant to stay in position (mine doesn’t) but assumed it was held manually when turning as a safety measure?

Front lens has a few minor grease looking specs but guess unless I send it back to HQ best to leave? What about dust? Again have not wanted to touch as optics through scope don’t appear affected.

Have all the paperwork, certicates etc, just need an Owner manual, but thankfully this forum has helped me to get started. Already viewed the moon and sun with filter (awesome) but will need to learn the process of setting up Polaris alignment etc but being a novice some of the terms and related scope functions are for now unfamiliar (steep learning curve ahead).

So, just wanted to say hi, and any pointers for a “lucky” novice would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers,
Jason
(Colchester, Essex, UK)




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#2 Toxo144

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 01:57 PM

Jason,

 

Welcome to the group!  The 50th edition of the 3.5 is an amazing little scope, and will be a pleasure to use for the rest of your life.  Pick up a camera lens brush with a small air bulb attached, it will get rid of most of the dust with a blow or a gentle swipe of the brush. the dust on the lens corrector won't be seen at the eyepiece anyway.  Far more annoying is the dirt and spots on the Brandon eyepieces and the internal Barlow.  If the prism in the control box gets dirt on it, this is even more annoying but happily there is a great series of videos available courtesy of Optics Patent here on the forum that can walk you through cleaning it yourself if you wish.  Since you are "across the Pond" from the Questar factory this could save you some time and money.

 

I, too, have a 50th and aside from my astrophoto rig it is my most used, preferred scope.  No GoTo needed.  I use it hard, even at public star parties.  People marvel at how I just turn 2 dials and locate objects, and often tell me that the view they get of SS objects are the best on the field. I am 100% sure that you will have the same experience.  Enjoy, and don't hesitate to post your observing reports here - you are among friends.

 

Congratulations!

 

Toxo


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#3 spereira

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 01:59 PM

Wow!  Congratulations!  Those don't come available at reasonable price very often.

 

Welcome to the club.  I think you'll enjoy it here.

 

smp


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#4 Defenderslideguitar

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 02:21 PM

Welcome aboard c/n.....you have come to the right place.  Very nice    Who does not aspire to own the sweet Questar.?

 I myself will eventually squirrel away enough money to get one someday    if I can just stop buying the refractor/classics of my dreams     Clear skies and keep looking up................


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#5 Iceni

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 02:31 PM

Jason,

Welcome to the group! The 50th edition of the 3.5 is an amazing little scope, and will be a pleasure to use for the rest of your life. Pick up a camera lens brush with a small air bulb attached, it will get rid of most of the dust with a blow or a gentle swipe of the brush. the dust on the lens corrector won't be seen at the eyepiece anyway. Far more annoying is the dirt and spots on the Brandon eyepieces and the internal Barlow. If the prism in the control box gets dirt on it, this is even more annoying but happily there is a great series of videos available courtesy of Optics Patent here on the forum that can walk you through cleaning it yourself if you wish. Since you are "across the Pond" from the Questar factory this could save you some time and money.

I, too, have a 50th and aside from my astrophoto rig it is my most used, preferred scope. No GoTo needed. I use it hard, even at public star parties. People marvel at how I just turn 2 dials and locate objects, and often tell me that the view they get of SS objects are the best on the field. I am 100% sure that you will have the same experience. Enjoy, and don't hesitate to post your observing reports here - you are among friends.

Congratulations!

Toxo


Thanks Toxo. What would be a good puffer brush recommendation? Searching online the choices are rather vast. Goat hair brush and separate blower or combined?


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#6 Erik Bakker

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 02:38 PM

Welcome aboard Jason!

 

Your Q50th sure looks gorgeous waytogo.gif



#7 Loren Gibson

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 05:11 PM

Don't send the Q back to the factory just for cleaning the front surface of the corrector. I use a Giottos Rocket air blaster for blowing dust off the corrector and eyepieces, and I can highly recommend doing that. It's very easy and safe to do this. If your corrector or eyepiece needs additional cleaning (the picture of your corrector doesn't look horrible, for what that's worth), I like to use one of several commercial optical lens cleaners that is safe for coated lens, along with delicate task wipes, or clean cotton swaps for small eyepiece lens. (If you want more detailed guidance, just ask.) I rarely, virtually never, use an optical brush for dust removal, nor do I use the "cleaning pens" on the optical surfaces any longer.

 

Do I infer correctly that your solar filter for the finder scope does not stay "closed" and protect the finder scope unless you are manually holding it in that position? If that's the case, it shouldn't do that. It should remain in place when you let go. I don't know how to adjust that so there's enough friction in the motion to have it stay in place, should that be the issue.

 

Congratulations on the new Questar! I hope you enjoy it for many years to come. Keep asking questions as needed.

 

Loren


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#8 Toxo144

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 05:32 PM

Jason,

 

There are MANY types of the bulb brushes that will do the job nicely.  Here is a link to one - 

 

https://www.bhphotov...wer_brush_small

 

Most of us Questar owners sift through a lot of on-line advice, and eventually wind up doing what works best for us.  There are thousands of ways to skin a cat,  but do what works for you.  For cleaning advice start with the factory manual, then look here on this forum to see what other owners' experience adds to your toolbox.

 

Again, congrats on acquiring a GORGEOUS instrument.  It will serve you well.

 

Toxo



#9 cbwerner

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 08:59 PM

Jason,

 

Congratulations! I've got a 50th myself, and it will be the last scope I let go of.

 

Yours is beautiful! I know how you feel about it. Curious to know the serial number - there are only 250 as I'm sure you know. I bought mine late - it's 242.

 

+1 to what Loren said about the finder solar filter. I can't drag mine out tonight, but I'm going to guess that a screw might need tightening to give it enough tension. But do see to that. It's an awesome feature, but frankly I wish I could padlock it down when in use, just because the safety angle freaks me out. I think a recent thread here indicated that it was actually Johnny Carson who made the suggestion to Questar for that addition. Pretty cool! smile.gif

 

Again, congratulations - she's a beaut! Lots of good info and friendly people here, so browse around. 


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#10 RMay

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 10:40 PM

Welcome aboard!!! Beautiful scope!!!

View with clear skies and healthy eyes... always ..

Ron

#11 munirocks

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 12:12 AM

I saw that one, too, on UK eBay and figured it would sell quickly. Congrats, and nice to know the power guide II is actually working (after the seller wasn't sure if it was). I'd try to remove to spots on the front with a tiny bit of acetone spread over a dozen cotton buds with little or no pressure. If you leave the grease spots on for a long time it might damage the coating. 

 

I'd also temporarily remove the finder filter (requires a Bristol wrench) so as to clean any oils out of the hinge, to try to stiffen it up a bit. 


Edited by munirocks, 16 September 2019 - 06:18 AM.


#12 JREnglar

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 02:45 AM

What a fantastic forum! Recently had the luck to purchase a lovely 50th Anniversary Questar from 2004.

Been on the lookout for sometime since stupidly selling an earlier 60’s model a few years back when money was urgently required and had regretted it ever since.

Recent auction purchase and this baby luckily came my way.

082db3ae158e10182536c2e3649491e9.jpg

4f993dc555069e8cdd7a431fa525cb30.jpg

4c652f2dcc5b50350c1a98c7c24f141b.jpg

22709364aaa0c1eafd6a9a3166f49126.jpg

99c5bf39fa3e30f70699ccd9c76ffc9f.jpg

Over the moon would be an understatement. Always loved the engineering, form, function and capabilities of this amazing telescope.

Seller didn’t believe the Powerguide was working but luckily it does ( just needs a new lead as one of the connectors locking clip doesn’t lock in place very well, can come loose).

Also, is the solar view finder meant to stay in position (mine doesn’t) but assumed it was held manually when turning as a safety measure?

Front lens has a few minor grease looking specs but guess unless I send it back to HQ best to leave? What about dust? Again have not wanted to touch as optics through scope don’t appear affected.

Have all the paperwork, certicates etc, just need an Owner manual, but thankfully this forum has helped me to get started. Already viewed the moon and sun with filter (awesome) but will need to learn the process of setting up Polaris alignment etc but being a novice some of the terms and related scope functions are for now unfamiliar (steep learning curve ahead).

So, just wanted to say hi, and any pointers for a “lucky” novice would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers,
Jason
(Colchester, Essex, UK)




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Jason,

With respect to the finder solar filter, it should stay firmly in place and you should not have to hold it. I would strongly recommend you not attempt to use it at all until it’s fixed to avoid a potentially hazardous situation to your vision.


On my Q3.5 units there were two Bristol screws (Bristols in my case, not sure if on the 50th they’re still Bristol’s or if they’ve changed to Allen screws). One is to mount the solar filter assembly to the scope but there’s a second one at midpoint on the solar filter finder shaft that adjusts the on/off tension. You will have to remove the filter assembly from the scope to see the tension screw. It’s a quick and easy adjustment.


JRE

Edited by JREnglar, 16 September 2019 - 03:00 AM.


#13 JMKarian

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 04:38 AM

Jason

Welcome !  . . . You have discovered a legion of Questar enthusiasts here who, like you, cherish the optical/mechanical genius of  founder Lawrence Braymer.   His mid-20th century contributions to amateur astronomy continue to give us joy to this day.

 

Clear Skies

 

John


Edited by JMKarian, 16 September 2019 - 04:39 AM.


#14 Johninuk

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:29 AM

Hello and Welcome,Jason,from someone else across the pond!
Saw that on eBay.Was tempted for a while,but I already have a 1980 standard. Couldn't justify another one to the wife!
Glad to see it go to another enthusiast.
Could l ask how much it went for in the end?

John.

#15 Iceni

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:31 AM

Hello and Welcome,Jason,from someone else across the pond!
Saw that on eBay.Was tempted for a while,but I already have a 1980 standard. Couldn't justify another one to the wife!
Glad to see it go to another enthusiast.
Could l ask how much it went for in the end?

John.

Thanks John and to the other members above for their kind words and advice. 

 

Finally agreed on £2150.



#16 Johninuk

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:39 AM

OMG!!! That's a steal for a 50th.I am depressed now!
Is there any sign of mirror issues due to broadband coatings failure?
John.

#17 Iceni

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:55 AM

OMG!!! That's a steal for a 50th.I am depressed now!
Is there any sign of mirror issues due to broadband coatings failure?
John.

I'm a novice so wouldn't know what the signs / indications would be?



#18 Johninuk

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 06:46 AM

There are some excellent advice and photos of coating issues on this site.The unfortunate thing with broadband is if it has failed,the optics cannot be recoated as with standard coatings.
John.

#19 Optics Patent

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:22 AM

The finder filter removes with a Bristol (not Allen hex) wrench, exposing the nylon drag slotted head screw that sets the flipper friction.

You may have the Bristol wrench in the case pocket. Easy to source otherwise.

#20 munirocks

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:27 AM

I myself am still confused as to which parts of a "broadband" optics set have the special "broadband coating" and cannot be stripped and/or recoated. Is it the corrector, the main mirror, or both?

I thought that the 50th version had traditional overcoated silver coatings on the main quartz mirror so at least the main mirror could be removed and sent for recoating to a third-party service if one was so inclined (even though Questar prefer to just replace the whole optics set). Can someone clarify?

 

I assume that the corrector and main mirror are a matched set so if you replace one you have to replace the other. 


Edited by munirocks, 16 September 2019 - 08:37 AM.


#21 Iceni

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:50 AM

The finder filter removes with a Bristol (not Allen hex) wrench, exposing the nylon drag slotted head screw that sets the flipper friction.

You may have the Bristol wrench in the case pocket. Easy to source otherwise.

Just ordered a set online, thanks.



#22 Johninuk

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 02:12 PM

I may be wrong here.I am under the impression that the 50th had broadband coatings on the main mirror.If that is incorrect,my apologies for going up that street. I'm sure the experts on this group can clarify it.

 

john.



#23 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 03:56 PM

Doesn't "broadband" refer to antireflection coatings?  As such, the broadband coatings are on the corrector, it doesn't make sense to refer to broadband mirror coatings.  A mirror might have high reflectivity coatings, and a Q sold with a broadband AR coating on the corrector may come with special high reflectivity mirror coatings, of course.



#24 ianatcn

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 04:17 PM

I may be wrong here.I am under the impression that the 50th had broadband coatings on the main mirror.If that is incorrect,my apologies for going up that street. I'm sure the experts on this group can clarify it.

 

john.

My 50th has silver with an overcoating on primary and mgf2 on corrector - no BB on the 50th.


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#25 Optics Patent

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 05:03 PM

I believe that "Broadband" refers to the special coatings on both mirror and corrector (presumably different coatings for reflection vs transmission).  But I might be wrong.

 

I do "know" that a BB mirror that has failed is trash. 

 

The silver is the coating for all 50th units.


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