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Information about Towa telescope

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#1 somoza

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Posted 25 September 2020 - 02:48 PM

Hi everyone!
 
New user here, I found this forum looking for information about the classic telescope I got. I am newbie in astronomy (and very curious), but I couldn't find anything about this model on internet. It is a Towa 60x800 (it has T circle) with 10x finder and I would like to learn more about it. Is a common or rare telescopie? a good one or "a toy"? I think that accesories are Towa too (an incomplete kit), I'm not sure.
 
In the last two weeks I've learnt the basis of telescopes. I have 0.965" H6mm and H12.5mm eyepieces, and I could see Mars these days (I live in a big city). How could I improve the telescope (with low budget)? Is it worth it? Maybe I'm excited with "trash" but I don't have experience in astronomy and seeing Saturn rings or Jupiter moons would be awesome for me!
 
Any advices?

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#2 Charles Funk

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Posted 25 September 2020 - 03:22 PM

That finder screams old Jason telescope. But it usually will say Jason on it somewhere. Back in the day nearly identical telescopes could be branded with whatever name an importer wanted to put on them. That still happens to some extent with astro stuff today.

 

Cheap improvements right off the bat, get a hybrid .965 to 1.25" diagonal and some plossl eyepieces. Something like a 30mm, 20mm and a 12-14mm. Not sure how well the finder will work, a zero power red dot might be in order.

 

With just those improvements it should be a decent little scope.



#3 somoza

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 10:08 AM

Thanks for answering! Yes, the finder seems Jason, but I only see Towa on the scope, and the T circle mark. I see nothing on accesories, just "Japan".

 

I found on a thread that RobDob has a Seikanon like mine:

https://www.cloudyni...-reflex-finder/

 

When you suggest to buy the Plossl 14mm, do you think about combine it with the Barlow to get high magnification? I thought to buy a Plossl 7mm or 8mm, do you recommend it?

 

Another question, in my case, would be better Plossl or Kellner eyepieces?



#4 Kasmos

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 03:19 PM

Thanks for answering! Yes, the finder seems Jason, but I only see Towa on the scope, and the T circle mark. I see nothing on accesories, just "Japan".

 

I found on a thread that RobDob has a Seikanon like mine:

https://www.cloudyni...-reflex-finder/

 

When you suggest to buy the Plossl 14mm, do you think about combine it with the Barlow to get high magnification? I thought to buy a Plossl 7mm or 8mm, do you recommend it?

 

Another question, in my case, would be better Plossl or Kellner eyepieces?

Many Jasons were made by Towa (circle T), so a 'Towa 'branded' Towa would never have Jason on it. 

 

As for eye pieces, any advice you seek depends on how much you want to invest in the scope. If you want to stay with .965" format there are some good ones out there but most of those have to be found in the used market. Also, Kellners should work fine with your scope but the plossls will have a wider field of view.



#5 tony_spina

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 04:22 PM

From your picture it looks like you are missing the top barrel on your diagonal that would hold your eyepiece 

 

If you are missing it you can see if the eyepiece holder from the correct view prism diagonal (the item in your top right) will unscrew and screw on the 90 degree prism diagonal (pictured middle right side) 


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#6 somoza

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 07:49 PM

Kasmos: Honestly, as less as possible. Firstly, I thought about using .965" eyepieces but I can't find them in the used market of my country. For that reason I'm considering to buy an adapter to 1.25". This telescope was a donation so I'd like to play with it as much as I can without spend big money on it.

 

 

tony spina: Good idea! I didn't think about that. I've tried it and it unscrews but unfortunately it doesn't fit to the 90º diagonal, different size, it's a pity because I'd need that piece :/



#7 tony_spina

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Posted 26 September 2020 - 10:38 PM

Too bad it didn't fit.  Are you able to purchase a hybrid diagonal? That and a couple of inexpensive plossl eyepieces 25mm and a 10mm or 9mm will give you some good magnifications to start 

 

The other option is look for some used eyepieces in your area

 

Some examples from ebay

https://www.ebay.com...ItemCondition=3

https://www.ebay.com...LIAAOSwXrhXmW3e


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#8 DouglasPaul

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 01:54 AM

Hi everyone!
 
New user here, I found this forum looking for information about the classic telescope I got. I am newbie in astronomy (and very curious), but I couldn't find anything about this model on internet. It is a Towa 60x800 (it has T circle) with 10x finder and I would like to learn more about it. Is a common or rare telescopie? a good one or "a toy"? I think that accesories are Towa too (an incomplete kit), I'm not sure.
 
In the last two weeks I've learnt the basis of telescopes. I have 0.965" H6mm and H12.5mm eyepieces, and I could see Mars these days (I live in a big city). How could I improve the telescope (with low budget)? Is it worth it? Maybe I'm excited with "trash" but I don't have experience in astronomy and seeing Saturn rings or Jupiter moons would be awesome for me!
 
Any advices?

I sent you a PM for eyepieces, yes you can see the rings but not by much and Saturn's moons but probably nothing else. It's a good scope but you will soon crave for more aperture. I just got one like that myself. At any rate, I can help you out with eyepieces.


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#9 GreyDay

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 04:19 AM

yes you can see the rings but not by much and Saturn's moons but probably nothing else. It's a good scope but you will soon crave for more aperture

At limiting mag of 10.7 for your average 60mm objective and all modern star atlases being limited to magnitude 7.5, you can see everything in a modern star atlas..... !

 

Remember that in areas with high light pollution, turbulent atmosphere and even extreme temperature changes that extend cooldown, aperture is not your friend shocked.gif
 


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#10 Van Do9:3

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 09:41 AM

Hello Somoza and welcome to the Classics forum. Congratulations on your Towa, it looks to be in very nice condition. If you do not have a manual, you can check out the ones at this site: https://wiki.telesco...om/wiki/Manuals 

and see if there is one that closely matches your Towa.  
 

If you don’t mind, please post more pictures of the Towa. They will help us better understand your telescope. 


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#11 DouglasPaul

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 12:04 PM

At limiting mag of 10.7 for your average 60mm objective and all modern star atlases being limited to magnitude 7.5, you can see everything in a modern star atlas..... !

 

Remember that in areas with high light pollution, turbulent atmosphere and even extreme temperature changes that extend cooldown, aperture is not your friend shocked.gif
 

You are correct. I should have been more specific. What I meant is that he probably wouldn't get much details of the planet. Cloud rings, great red spot etc...


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#12 Pete W

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 12:23 PM

Thanks for answering! Yes, the finder seems Jason, but I only see Towa on the scope, and the T circle mark. I see nothing on accesories, just "Japan".

 

I found on a thread that RobDob has a Seikanon like mine:

https://www.cloudyni...-reflex-finder/

 

When you suggest to buy the Plossl 14mm, do you think about combine it with the Barlow to get high magnification? I thought to buy a Plossl 7mm or 8mm, do you recommend it?

 

Another question, in my case, would be better Plossl or Kellner eyepieces?

Inexpensive 60mm scopes like yours often get little respect, but they can still show lots of fine sights.  The moon and planets are nice easy targets but many double stars are well within its reach, and even star clusters and galaxies can be seen under a dark sky, as long as you don’t expect too much.  In addition to better eyepieces, consider picking up a star chart that shows fainter stars and deep sky objects (star clusters, nebula and galaxies).  Sky and Telescope’s Pocket Star Atlas is a fairly inexpensive option.

 

And I have instructions for the reflex finder if you need it.  


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#13 Pete W

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 01:09 PM

Here's the reflex finder instructions.  The easiest way to adjust the finder is in the daytime.  First, center in the main scope a distant building or tree and then tighten the altitude and azimuth knobs.  Then turn the finder knob to see if the object in the main scope is centered in the finder.  if not, use the instructions to adjust the finder.  Do this a few times until an object centered in the finder is also centered in the main scope.

 

Attached File  Jason 313 reflex finder instructions.pdf   241.27KB   7 downloads


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#14 somoza

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Posted 27 September 2020 - 06:08 PM

Wow! a lot of feedback!

 

tony_spina: Thank you for the links! Yes, I'm looking for a hybrid diagonal in my town, I think it's the best option to improve the telescope.

 

Douglas Paul: PM sent!

 

GreyDay: Good to know it! I live in a big town, so I can see few stars, maybe I should go to the countryside with the telescope.

 

Van Do 9:3: Thanks for the link! I'll look for the closer manual for the telescope. Regading to the pictures, are you interested on something specific? I haven't seen more remarkable features to identify the telescope, but no problem about more pics.

 

Pete W: Useful guide! I haven't thought about adjusting the finder. Its internal lens is broken (it has two scratches), fortunately I use them as a reference (thinking about that, I believe the finder isn't well centered). I live in a big town, so I don't expect too much about seeing stars, anyway, I didn't know the possibilities of this little scope, I like it!

 

EDIT: The closest manual I've found, It'd be the Sears 4451, although it has equatorial mount and F=900mm

EDIT2: Thanks to the reflex finder instructions, I found out that the "scratches of the internal lens" are simply two cooper wires drawing a cross as a target


Edited by somoza, 28 September 2020 - 01:43 PM.


#15 Van Do9:3

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Posted 28 September 2020 - 09:56 PM

Glad you were able to find a similar telescope manual. A photo of the overall focuser tube will work.

 

There are a lot of bright night sky objects that you will enjoy now and in the winter with your classic telescope. If you are up early enough before sunrise, you should be able view to view Mars, Venus, and Orion and it’s nebula. The moon of course will be spectacular even with the .965” EPs. 
 

Enjoy. 



#16 oldmanastro

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 04:59 AM

A lot of folks in this forum started out in astronomy with a telescope like yours or a similar facsimile. Usually the optics are pretty good and all they need is new 1.25" eyepieces and a hybrid diagonal that allows you to use them in .965" focuser. They really improve the views over the original eyepieces with narrow fields. Your mount is an excellent altazimuth one with slow motion controls in both axes. If you cannot use the integrated finder there are many red dot zero power finders that can be attached to the telescope. Enjoy your vintage Towa. Many of us still use them a lot.



#17 somoza

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 12:57 PM

More pictures! (I'm not a good photographer I know). I think slow controls don't work well (or I don't know how to use them).

 

Van Do9:3: With focuser did you mean this?

 

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#18 Kasmos

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 02:17 PM

In your second photo, the tanget arm (the thing pointing down with the scratch on it), is suppose to go between the spring piston and the threaded shaft of the control.


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#19 somoza

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 05:09 PM

In your second photo, the tanget arm (the thing pointing down with the scratch on it), is suppose to go between the spring piston and the threaded shaft of the control.

If I understood you well, the tangent arm should be in front of the endless screw (so when I move the control, the screw turns moving the arm, as well the telescope along the X axis).

 

Well, I received the scope like this, I've checked it and surprisingly I can't put the arm in front of (or even behind) the endless screw (I removed the screw splitting the telescope into mount and scope, and tried to put the arm in the right place). I mean that the distance between Y axis and arm is the same than between Y axis and endless screw, so both pieces can't be in the same place (that distance should be a bit larger to fit it).

 

Is it clear? My English is not as good as I'd like.



#20 Van Do9:3

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 08:04 PM

Thank you for the photos. It looks like you have a pull out draw tub and the straight rack and pinion focus assembly.

 

Chris is correct about the tangent arm placement. Here is a photo of a similar tangent arm in its correct position:

 

FE4258B2-695A-4B68-A16A-7400A80501E3.jpeg
 

To reposition the tangent arm, first turn the flexible slow motion control screw so it backs away from the spring piston and allows the piston to fully extend. 

 

I believe you should be able to loosen the black knob tensioning screw on the side of the mount and lift the fork mount up. This should allow the tangent arm rotator to be lifted back between the limiting arms and behind the spring piston. 
 

EE0D78EE-DCD8-4A14-82C9-8DFBDE15491F.jpeg

 

One word of caution when working on any telescope, is to not force anything if it doesn’t want to budge or move. The tangent arm may not move when you loosen the tensioning screw. This may be because it is held in place with a small screw. If it is, you’ll need to loosen the small retaining screw to move the tangent arm rotator. Also, be patient, don’t rush. Hopefully this helps you fix the tangent arm. 
 

 


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#21 Kasmos

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 04:02 AM

This mount is close in design to yours.

 

Mount Tangent arm.jpg

I'm not sure if yours is the same but this one has a screw at the base of the tripod hub that needs to be removed so that the fork can be lifted and the tangent arm can be positioned between the piston and threaded control. After cleaning up the parts on mine I had to completely remove the threaded control assembly because the spring's pressure on the piston was very strong.

 

This one has the chrome knob at the top of the tanget arm that locks it to the fork which allows the slow motion knob to control it's movement. In use, the range of motion is fairly limited so it's position needs to be periodcally reset 


Edited by Kasmos, 30 September 2020 - 04:10 AM.

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#22 somoza

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 12:41 PM

Success!! Thank you so much to everyone, especially Van Do9:3 and Kasmos for their clues! I thought that piston and screw were together, so I didn't imagine that you can push the piston, getting a gap for the arm. Now I think the telescope works smoothly, so next step is getting a hybrid diagonal for modern eyepieces.

 

I'd like to ask few (basic) things:

 

Which would be the highest magnification for this model? 120x, right?

 

Which would be a homemade way to clean lenses? Alcohol, soap?

 

Attending to image quality, would be better, for instance, 20mm + Barlow x2, or 10mm eyepiece?

 

EDIT: How old is the telescope? I couldn't find information of this 60x800 model

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Edited by somoza, 30 September 2020 - 03:30 PM.

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#23 GreyDay

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 01:35 PM

Which would be the highest magnification for this model? 120x, right?

 

Which would be a homemade way to clean lenses? Alcohol, soap?

 

Attending to image quality, would be better, for instance, 20mm + Barlow x2, or 10mm eyepiece?

1. Depends on seeing (atmospheric) conditions but 120-150 should be fine

2. small amount of dish soap with distilled water using wet cotton wool to help remove tougher dirt, then rinse with distilled water and dry with cotton wool or soft lint free cloth

3. depends on the quality of the barlow and eyepieces! a rubbish barlow with good 20mm will just make a bad 10mm. A good barlow with bad 20mm will make a bad 10mm see where we're going with this? Barlows are really useful if you have limited funds/access to ep's.


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#24 somoza

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Posted 16 October 2020 - 11:14 AM

An update to thank DouglasPaul for the eyepieces he sent me, they work very well during day and fit smoothy to my Towa! I'm eager to test them for the Moon! Thank you again!

 

I only have access to north and east orientations, so I've only seen the Moon, Mars and Venus during last nights. Anyway these seeings are exciting for me. The 2x barlow is too simple (one lens) so I think it doesn't work well at all, adding achromatic aberrations to my eyepieces. My next step is getting a hydrid diagonal for modern eyepieces. We'll see!

 

 

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