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Looking for info on Carroll Astronomical Instruments

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#1 Jim Davis

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 01:16 PM

I'm refurbishing a scope for the York County Astronomical Society, PA. It is a Carroll Astronomical Instruments. Geo. Carroll Tujunga Cal, 1955, Optics by Cave. Anyone have any information on this scope?

 

PXL_20201114_180624274.jpg

 

PXL_20201114_180603978.jpg

 

PXL_20201114_180612482.jpg


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#2 apfever

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 01:30 PM

I have a 1958 or 59  Carroll, 6" about F7.  Carroll bought out Astro Telescope Co. in the late 50's.  My scope is right at that transition. 

A search for "Carroll Telescope" will usually bring up some related links. They are prominent enough to have some posterity on the web.


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#3 John Rogers

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 01:45 PM

Great find!  I have forwarded this thread to CN member Steve Brewster, who is arguably the world's expert on George Carroll.

 

George Carroll designed the Stony-Ridge Observatory 30-inch telescope:  http://www.stony-rid...opegallery.html


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#4 Bomber Bob

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 05:14 PM

Wow!  Very Nice Find!  The focuser looks similar to the fine rack & pinion on my antique Tinsley 6" Cass -- my best single-knob r&p...



#5 sbrewster

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 05:25 PM

I'm refurbishing a scope for the York County Astronomical Society, PA. It is a Carroll Astronomical Instruments. Geo. Carroll Tujunga Cal, 1955, Optics by Cave. Anyone have any information on this scope?

 

Jim, I have 2 earlier photos of your Carroll 10-inch w/Cave optics which may have been posted here on CN. I don't remember where I got them. 

 

I do have more information about George Carroll from his handwritten autobiography which I have posted on the Stony Ridge Observatory website at http://stony-ridge.o...ny Heinzman.pdf

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • Label on Carroll 10-inch Reflector 1955-small.jpg
  • Carroll 10-inch Reflector 1955-small.jpg

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#6 Jim Davis

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 06:04 PM

Jim, I have 2 earlier photos of your Carroll 10-inch w/Cave optics which may have been posted here on CN. I don't remember where I got them. 

 

I do have more information about George Carroll from his handwritten autobiography which I have posted on the Stony Ridge Observatory website at http://stony-ridge.o...ny Heinzman.pdf

Yes, that looks like the same one. I don't know the history. It's just been sitting in the observatory for a while.


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#7 Ken Launie

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 07:27 PM

Does the Carroll equatorial survive? They're very distinctive, and really stable and substantial.

--Ken



#8 Ken Launie

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 07:35 PM

I never met George Carroll but here's a photograph of him at the 1980 Riverside Telescope Making Conference, 25 years after your telescope was built. I don't know who took the photograph, unfortunately.

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  • George Carroll at Riverside 1980.jpg

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#9 sbrewster

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 10:15 PM

Does the Carroll equatorial survive? They're very distinctive, and really stable and substantial.

--Ken

Hi Ken, It was nice to see you virtually at the ATS Convention this morning, I was lurking there.

We have one of Carroll's mounts at Stony Ridge.  It's supporting a 12-inch Cassegrain  that was built in 1976 by one of the founding members, John Terlep. There are a number of others out there. The RA & DEC circles were modifications to the original Carroll design.  These were engraved at Terlep Enterprises. This photo was taken at SRO in 2012 with Peter Abrahams taking notes.

 

--Steve

Attached Thumbnails

  • _DSC1292-small.jpg

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#10 sbrewster

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 10:19 PM

I never met George Carroll but here's a photograph of him at the 1980 Riverside Telescope Making Conference, 25 years after your telescope was built. I don't know who took the photograph, unfortunately.

I believe the photo was taken by Lew Chilton of the LAAS.

 

--Steve


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#11 sbrewster

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Posted 14 November 2020 - 10:29 PM

I have a 1958 or 59  Carroll, 6" about F7.  Carroll bought out Astro Telescope Co. in the late 50's.  My scope is right at that transition. 

A search for "Carroll Telescope" will usually bring up some related links. They are prominent enough to have some posterity on the web.

 

I would be interested to know if George did indeed buy out Astro Telescope Co. in the late 50's.  That could be correct, but that hasn't shown up in the timeline of what I know about Carroll, at least not yet.  My 2 questions for apfever is 1) did you buy your scope from George at Astro Telescope, or after the transition in about '58-'59?

 

The information about George Carroll that I'ved gleaned from his handwritten autobiography (of sorts) is posted on the Stony Ridge Observatory website at http://stony-ridge.o...ny Heinzman.pdf  in which George himself wrote that "I became listed as a professional [telescope maker] in 1946 and operated the Astro Telescope Co. in Glendale Calif for several years." 

 

Ads running in Sky&Tell in 1946-47 for Astro Telescope Co. do not mention Carroll by name.  By 1954, the ads in S&T showed that Carroll & Bohannon were in business together in La Crescenta, building customed telescopes, implying that George operated or owned Astro Tel Co for perhaps 8 years. 

 

In 1957 George completed the 16½-inch Cassegrain telescope for Westmont College in Ventura County.  That scope is currently housed at John Briggs' Astronomical Lyceum in NM.  Carroll, using his experience on the 16½-inch, went on to build Stony Ridges' 30-inch Newtonian/Cassegrain which is still in use today.  During the years from 1957 to his passing in 1987, George Carroll worked with the Thomas Tool & Die Company as a consulting engineer continuing his legacy as a telescope and instrument designer/builder.

 

--Steve

Attached Thumbnails

  • Carroll and Bohannon Ads.png

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#12 apfever

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 08:23 AM

The ad on the left specifically stating "Astro Telescope Company" is the only ad I've seen by name.  My scope has "ASTRO-TELESCOPE-Co" cast into the mounting parts. The same parts later had "CARROLL" cast in the same locations.  My scope was one displayed for sale at a machine shop in CA. I talked to a nephew of one of the 2 owners of the machine shop. Word is that there was limited exposure for the scopes and the machine shop had a good store front for retail.  My scope was greatly modified by one of the machine shop owners and kept instead of being sold. A motor drive was added and the motor date is June 1949 or 1948.  

I'd have to check if you want the exact year, it's still legible and confirmed by Synchron for date.  Synchron spent about an hour on the phone with me to ID the motor along with other chit chat.  I was highly impressed by the gentleman that talked to me. 

 

I have no way to contact the nephew of the machine shop owner. That is long lost info.  I bought the scope between 5 and 10 years ago, I think closer to 10. It came to me through the sister of a guy that had passed away. She was an older lady. Her brother was from the Southwest, New Mexico or Arizona I believe. The brother was a total 'Bill Nye' type, much like me. He also had a turbine powered alternator from and F16. She showed it to me, brand new in box. I called Buckley AFB and they confirmed it was one of theirs so I put them in touch with the lady and let that go. All legit. 

 

I have post on CN about the scope, and a ton of pictures never posted, many pictures scattered through CN in strings like 'show your reflector or...' but no way can I find them now. Any specific string would be in archives.  The scope is in perfect shape, steam punk riveted OTA, absolutely gorgeous in engineering and the machine shop additions are nothing short of spectacular for aesthetics, elegance, and function.  This is the ONLY scope I have allowed to stay in the front room. It is the ONLY scope I have that gets more "WOW" from people than  the Criterion 10" observatory which comes in as #2 for wow factor.  I'll never sell it, part of my permanent estate. It will never be worth the stupid money someone would have to pay to pry it from me so I don't even let it go there and this cognitive passion for these instruments is supported by how I sold Orange Tube C8 #1.   Oh, optics are awesome and it has what I think is an original eyepiece.

 

I'll take any custom pictures if feasible that might help but right now I'm battling ongoing camera issues with my new one having failed on the battery cover clips. If it's not one thing it's another.  My backup camera isn't great but works for closer photos.  It goes grainy with any regular distance for full scale. Also,  consider a pm for contact since I can forget about this whole entry and string in less than a week.  My intellect is intact but I rattled the noggin with a fall 2 plus years ago. Memory, organization, follow through, spatial reference, etc. are pretty rough.  Don't worry about asking about the scope. You won't impose. I'd love to know how my story jives for facts, love to show the scope, and will try to get the above info into the paper file for this scope if I have one. 


Edited by apfever, 15 November 2020 - 08:33 AM.

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#13 apfever

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 08:35 AM

My apologies, not trying to derail this string from the O.P. one in question. 



#14 Jim Davis

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 08:41 AM

Does the Carroll equatorial survive? They're very distinctive, and really stable and substantial.

--Ken

Not that I am aware of. What does one look like?



#15 Jim Davis

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 09:12 AM

I don't think this scope has been on a mount for quite a while.


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#16 sbrewster

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 03:07 PM

The ad on the left specifically stating "Astro Telescope Company" is the only ad I've seen by name.  My scope has "ASTRO-TELESCOPE-Co" cast into the mounting parts. The same parts later had "CARROLL" cast in the same locations.  My scope was one displayed for sale at a machine shop in CA. I talked to a nephew of one of the 2 owners of the machine shop. Word is that there was limited exposure for the scopes and the machine shop had a good store front for retail.  My scope was greatly modified by one of the machine shop owners and kept instead of being sold. A motor drive was added and the motor date is June 1949 or 1948.

Thanks very much, Apfever. I really appreciate your detailed reponse.  You've open up my research on Carroll instruments with your comments.  Your's are good details on which I will cogitate and update my info for Carroll's Stony Ridge Observatory.

 

Thanks very much.

 

--Steve



#17 CHASLX200

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 03:24 PM

Hi Ken, It was nice to see you virtually at the ATS Convention this morning, I was lurking there.

We have one of Carroll's mounts at Stony Ridge.  It's supporting a 12-inch Cassegrain  that was built in 1976 by one of the founding members, John Terlep. There are a number of others out there. The RA & DEC circles were modifications to the original Carroll design.  These were engraved at Terlep Enterprises. This photo was taken at SRO in 2012 with Peter Abrahams taking notes.

 

--Steve

Good looking scope.
 


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#18 sbrewster

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Posted 15 November 2020 - 05:50 PM

I don't think this scope has been on a mount for quite a while.

Interesting, Jim... In my photo folder where the earlier photos of your 10" Carroll/Cave reside, there is one photo I had not posted anywhere, until now.  It came to me from the same source, but to me and other members of Stony Ridge Observatory who knew George Carroll and his work, all agreed that this equatorial mount did not look like it was "Carroll-built", but a mount of unknown origin  that may have been used earlier with your telescope.

 

Equatorial Mount for Carroll 10-inch-cropped.jpg

 

--Steve

 

 

 


Edited by sbrewster, 15 November 2020 - 05:59 PM.

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#19 Terra Nova

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Posted 16 November 2020 - 11:29 AM

I knew a fellow out in Southern California that had a brass Carroll 6” F15 or 16. The OTA was in two sections that came apart in the middle for easier transport. It was purportedly the instrument used by Chesley Bonestell when he observed the moon preparing his famous lunar landscape illustrations for a Trip To The Moon:

 

http://orbit.zkm.de/?q=node/93

 

That were used in the early (~1956) Disneyland/Tomorrowland ride: Rocket To The Moon:

 

https://yesterland.com/moonrocket.html


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