A few weeks back I was asked to take a look at an FS102 that the owner believed was not performing as good as it could. So, for the last week or so I have been tweaking/adjusting/testing. Specifically, I performed the following:
• Corrected paint issues on OTA
• Cleaned outer surfaces of front and rear lens
• Adjusted focuser to remove as much focus shift as possible
• Collimated focuser
• Collimated lens cell
• Performed suite of optical bench tests
The above work may seem like a lot, but in reality, the telescope was in very good "used" condition when I received it. All that was really needed was some typical maintenance and TLC. Afterall, it was a 2003 model and it had been used regularly the last 17 years.
Takahashi paint is soft, not blind criticism, rather, its reality. Honda automobiles are the same way, too, as some of the other Japanese auto makers especially compared to German and to a lesser extent American automobiles. I've previously wondered if paint formulas in Japan are purposely mixed this way. Anyway, I was able to use a host of different compounds and dual action polishers to remove all defects except those that pierced the clear coat and underlying color going directly to metal - there was only one of this type. The scope, in person, now looks show room new. The owner will be very happy.
I have owned three TAK scopes - FS152, Sky90 and now an excellent TSA120. The current TSA120 is my favorite. But, even so, I am not a huge fan of the brand. Along with the paint being soft, I don't like the focusers. And, If wanting compression fittings, I find it overly complex to do simple things without the use of extension tubes and adapters. The Baader Qick-Lock adpaters solve a lot of the headache here.
However, optically, every TAK I have owned has exceeded my expectations. The FS152 showed me what 6 inches of unobstructed aperture could do; the Sky90 was better then almost all the reviews said it would be; and the TSA120 is best of breed in it's aperture class. This was the first FS102 I had ever tested extensively over the course of several days on a bench in a controlled environment.
Edited by peleuba, 26 July 2020 - 03:21 PM.