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Pristine Tasco 80mm 17TR

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#1 Piaget

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 01:59 PM

I picked up a like new Tasco 17TR on bay at the beginning of November , it came as a complete kit , even had paperwork & astronomy pamphlets. Only thing missing from the kit was some kind of light that use to come with the scopes to see accessories at night. You will notice the focus assembly is not the original. The focus assembly from my Tasco 14TE solarama fit perfectly in the 17TE & has machined knobs & better R&P. The Original 17TE assembly had a rough focus tube , which I have never liked in a scope. The 14TE assembly has 5.5 inches of adjustment & reaches focus across the range. Had great views of the moon recently at 100x with a Celestron 10mm 1.25 plossi EP. Very little aberration , If any & crystal clear views. I used a very nice Meade .965-1.25 diagonal to convert to 1.25 EPs. The OBJ lens is pictured & is clear except for my reflection when I photographed it. Sorry about the slightly blurry pics  I am old and somewhat arthritic & shake a little. Mount is tight & perfectly functioning , same for the wood tripod , no need for refinishing. Somebody really took care of this scope. Thanks for looking , PiagetIMG_0773.JPG IMG_0797.JPG IMG_0798.JPG


Edited by Piaget, 15 December 2020 - 02:05 PM.

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#2 oldmanastro

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 03:14 PM

 I like these red Tascos from the 80s. This particular model seems to be the younger brother of the Tasco 10K but with a shorter focal length. Back in the 80s I remember a photo shop at a local shopping mall that carried these red Tascos and had a very nice display featuring most of the refractors. Congratulations on this wonderful find and most importantly, enjoy it.


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#3 apfever

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 03:23 PM

They are great. I still have my Tasco red 17T (Towa), and plan on keeping it. It has great glass fluke or otherwise. 

I believe these came with the Nitewriter pen light.  These rarely survive, usually get lost, probably tossed when the pen quits working. I've found the bracket remaining on a several Tasco reds but no pen.

 

The Nitewriter Pen light holder is the chrome stalk looking attachment on two of the trays. These three are NOT the 17T.  I already had these pulled from my catacomb for another purpose.  The 17T is still laying at rest. 

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Edited by apfever, 15 December 2020 - 03:40 PM.

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#4 Piaget

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 03:43 PM

Oldmanastro & Apfever , Thanks for the info. The kit has the Pen holder attached to the acc tray , just no pen.



#5 Paul Sweeney

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 03:44 PM

Wow! Nice catch!
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#6 Piaget

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 04:01 PM

Paul ,  I was on bay the moment it came on for auction  bid , no buy it now option. I immediately contacted the seller & we worked out an amicable deal. He was very careful with packing & shipping & I got it undamaged & complete.


Edited by Piaget, 15 December 2020 - 04:02 PM.

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#7 oldmanastro

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 06:43 PM

They are great. I still have my Tasco red 17T (Towa), and plan on keeping it. It has great glass fluke or otherwise. 

I believe these came with the Nitewriter pen light.  These rarely survive, usually get lost, probably tossed when the pen quits working. I've found the bracket remaining on a several Tasco reds but no pen.

 

The Nitewriter Pen light holder is the chrome stalk looking attachment on two of the trays. These three are NOT the 17T.  I already had these pulled from my catacomb for another purpose.  The 17T is still laying at rest. 

Nice display of red Tasco telescopes. I do remember the Nitewriter pen light. Back in the early 2000s I landed a Tasco 60mm f/15 equatorial with white tube and metal tripod in original box and with the pen light included. The telescope had excellent optics. I used this telescope a lot on doubles. Then, regrettably I sold it a few years later. Tasco had better color coordination than Sears. You can date the refractors by the color more effectively. With Sears the colors overlapped during the years. In 1966 you could buy a 76mm refractor and get either a teal colored one or the gray. With Tasco it was white followed by red and later on they used black.


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#8 apfever

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Posted 15 December 2020 - 07:16 PM

Here ya go, just took these.  The black box is an empty that never had a pen when I got it with a 14F model.  The fancy display box version came with a 9F - I think. I keep this with the 17T now. It has two tips, one installed and the extra in the box. I couldn't coax any ink this time but I didn't try all the pen tricks. A few years ago it would still put out but a bit scratchy. The light works great.  It is turned on by placing the cap over the back end. There is a needle in the cap that presses into a hole in the back of the pen. The cap has to be pushed all the way on. It's easy to not figure this out. 

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#9 Piaget

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Posted 16 December 2020 - 09:42 AM

Apfever & Old man , Thanks for the interesting info on the rare pen. Great display of red Tascos.



#10 GeneDiG

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 10:39 AM

Nice find! I've always wanted a 17T.


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#11 Piaget

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 11:07 AM

Gene , Thanks , It is a fine scope. Hope you come across one too.



#12 Terra Nova

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 11:07 AM

That’s a pretty telescope! Congrats! waytogo.gif


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#13 Piaget

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 11:15 AM

Thanks Terra , it is a good mate to my Tasco 10VR. I am retired & on a meager scope budget & have to make my buys carefully.


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#14 Terra Nova

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 11:19 AM

The two will make a great combination, both to look through and to look at! The 10VR is a great little RFT for widefield extended stellar views and your new scope will be perfect for solar system objects, double stars, etc.


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#15 apfever

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 02:27 PM

About 10 minutes to set, more than that to dust is why I don't, but I did. 

Matters of consequence as the Prince might say:

 

1. The Andrews Sisters are on the vintage stereo.

2. I just Tim Taylored some vroom in the central heat.

3. That's the 17T in the middle. 

4. Pretty Christmas-y to me so why not. 

5. CN on screen background. 

6. Honorable mention, 8V scope lamp (red candle lamp) on bar.

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Edited by apfever, 17 December 2020 - 02:29 PM.

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#16 apfever

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 02:32 PM

The 17T.

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#17 Piaget

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Posted 17 December 2020 - 08:29 PM

Apfever , Thanks for the photos of your 17T & red scope tascos. I have always been a fan of these scopes & thought they are better than the bad rap they got.


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#18 DouglasPaul

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 06:35 AM

Here is my 17TR with it's little half brother the 9F that I can now set up thanks to your donation of the accessory tray, thank you one more time @Piaget.

 

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Edited by DouglasPaul, 06 March 2021 - 06:53 AM.

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#19 Piaget

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Posted 06 March 2021 - 11:47 AM

Paul , glad you got it intact. 



#20 DouglasPaul

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Posted 07 April 2021 - 11:31 PM

Well, my pics went away and I can't edit the post. confused1.gif

 

So here is one that's not as good. frown.gif

 

001.jpg


Edited by DouglasPaul, 07 April 2021 - 11:33 PM.

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#21 GreyDay

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Posted 08 April 2021 - 04:02 AM

Apfever , Thanks for the photos of your 17T & red scope tascos. I have always been a fan of these scopes & thought they are better than the bad rap they got.

The problem with the Red Tasco's is they cover 5 generations of production. What i call the last of the Japanese Towa's, the Japanese Tanzutsu's, The Taiwan scopes the Korean scopes and finally the Chinese. All vary very differently in quality, I've collected the all 50mm's and some 60's but sold on the bad ones. The most apparent change is the move to more plastic parts and lesser quality mounts and accessories and poor objectives and poor fit and finish in the Taiwan/Korea models. What doesn't help is they used the same model number across the whole production range, so a "Red Tube" model can either be good or garbage depending on it's year or country of manufacture. This is why they get such mixed reviews.

 

The only red scope i kept is the last of the Japanese Towa 50x600's. The 17T' series aren't too common here in the uk but the later 49T range are everywhere. The Tanzutu's can have decent parts depending on how far through the production run they were assembled, but the plastic parts detract from their overall "feel". 

 

It's sad that Tasco went from reasonable quality to profit over performance, the later chinese Tasco's also vary in quality but the Objectives are good, i've got a gold Luminova 60x800 that works really well but the EP's, diagonal and mount i gave away. As i've said so many times, the chinese are making better quality "small" scopes each year. There's still hope for Tasco yet, but there's no denying that some production choices have hurt their reputation.


Edited by GreyDay, 08 April 2021 - 04:06 AM.

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#22 BarabinoSr

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Posted 08 April 2021 - 07:44 AM

Good Morning Everyone! Nice to read your posts on the red Tascos. I dont own a red Tasco refractor, but I do have the red 11TR 4 1/4 " reflector . It has the same optical specs as the old white  Lunagrosso11TE, I also believe that they had a small red 3-inch reflector as well. My brother Mel has a red 9F with the flip finder.   Gary


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#23 DouglasPaul

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Posted 08 April 2021 - 11:36 AM

Good Morning Everyone! Nice to read your posts on the red Tascos. I dont own a red Tasco refractor, but I do have the red 11TR 4 1/4 " reflector . It has the same optical specs as the old white  Lunagrosso11TE, I also believe that they had a small red 3-inch reflector as well. My brother Mel has a red 9F with the flip finder.   Gary

If I get the chance to pick one of those 11TR's up at a good price I plan on doing so.



#24 DouglasPaul

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Posted 09 April 2021 - 08:29 PM

The problem with the Red Tasco's is they cover 5 generations of production. What i call the last of the Japanese Towa's, the Japanese Tanzutsu's, The Taiwan scopes the Korean scopes and finally the Chinese. All vary very differently in quality, I've collected the all 50mm's and some 60's but sold on the bad ones. The most apparent change is the move to more plastic parts and lesser quality mounts and accessories and poor objectives and poor fit and finish in the Taiwan/Korea models. What doesn't help is they used the same model number across the whole production range, so a "Red Tube" model can either be good or garbage depending on it's year or country of manufacture. This is why they get such mixed reviews.

 

The only red scope i kept is the last of the Japanese Towa 50x600's. The 17T' series aren't too common here in the uk but the later 49T range are everywhere. The Tanzutu's can have decent parts depending on how far through the production run they were assembled, but the plastic parts detract from their overall "feel". 

 

It's sad that Tasco went from reasonable quality to profit over performance, the later chinese Tasco's also vary in quality but the Objectives are good, i've got a gold Luminova 60x800 that works really well but the EP's, diagonal and mount i gave away. As i've said so many times, the chinese are making better quality "small" scopes each year. There's still hope for Tasco yet, but there's no denying that some production choices have hurt their reputation.

My 17TR is currently my favorite telescope. I put the 9F  up against the Towa 305 I recently sold and the Towa gave better views in my opinion. I opted to keep the 9F over the Towa as I have two 80 mm refractors on GEM's now and the Towa wasn't getting used. The 9F is a really easy grab and go. The 17T I picked up cheap and it's a project and the 17TR gives better views. It may be the 17T just needs cleaning and collimating, I haven't had a chance to take a good look at it yet.


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