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(Help?) - found Tasco 7te-5 (?) disassembled. Can beginner fix?

Beginner Classic DIY Equipment Refractor
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#1 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 12:19 PM

tl;dr:  Is this a no brainer for $40?

 

EDIT: main objective, too hazy?  https://i.imgur.com/yVWlvwC.jpg

___________________

 

Beginner here, and I need some helpful advice.

I found a local person selling a "telescope," with just a picture of the mount and box (no OTA), asking $40.

https://i.imgur.com/fgc6X2X.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/WuYhaJh.jpg

 

I am trying to do basic research, most of which leads me back here to old CN threads.

I assume that this is a Tasco 7te-5, which seems to have a good reputation amongst you "classic" folks.

 

I asked the seller for photos of what's inside:

https://i.imgur.com/7LQeREM.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/vutoQPw.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/xO3gHPN.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/elCfcu9.jpg

 

 

I'm completely ignorant of refractor construction, and the disassembly of the OTA is concerning.

 

The whole OTA looks to be in three parts.  Is that a problem, or do they just screw back together??

 

Does this look relatively complete?  Finderscope is there.   I see a couple of the volcano top EPs, the diagonal prism, Barlow.  Is the erecting prism attached to the focusing tube? (perhaps the 20mm is there as well?)   Sun projection apparatus, etc.?

 

Couple paint chips here and there, otherwise looks pretty clean.

 

If I can ask the seller for any other info/photos, what should I get?  Photo of the serial-info badge? More?

 

If I can go check it out in person, what can I do for a quick inspection?  Just check the glass for issues and hope for the best later on?

 

_

 

Or, am I asking way too much right now, and should already be taking a drive to buy this for $40?

 

Thank you, all!


Edited by reverse_syzygy, 08 September 2021 - 04:33 PM.


#2 sdedalus83

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 12:51 PM

For $40, just buy it if it’s close. From what I can tell the glass looks useable.

 

the objective cell and focuser screw on and into the tube and shipped with them removed.


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#3 randcpoll

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 12:52 PM

Yes, it looks substantially complete. Assembly is incredibly easy, the objective screws on to one end and the focuser into the other. This is a great deal for $40 if the objective is in good shape. Even if it is not in great shape, as long as it is not broken, it's a good deal.


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#4 Marc-Andre

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 12:58 PM

The focuser and the lens cell simply screw onto the tube, and the dew shield screws onto the lens cell.  If it has not been cross threaded in the past, it should go together easily, though I'd clean the threads first and add a tiny touch of Superlube for a little lubrication.

 

Photos of the objective and the finder's objective would be good, especially the main objective to verify the 3 foil spacer are still in place, that there are no clamshells or cracked lens, and no fungus and cleaning scratches.. Dust is OK and the seller should not clean it to make it presentable as that probably will scratch the lens through lack of knowledge, skill or care.  But, the picture that is included of the lens cell looks good.

 

If it was a local pick-up, I'd already have it, as seen.


Edited by Marc-Andre, 08 September 2021 - 03:18 PM.

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#5 Kasmos

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 02:11 PM

It's absoutely a no brainer. 

 

Except for maybe one eyepiece it looks complete. The 7TE-5 is optically one the best 60mm achromatic telescopes you can buy. I paid more for just a mount from one. 


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#6 rkinnett

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 02:28 PM

I found one just like that on craigslist for about the same price, from the son of the original owner.  Mine was fully packed up and it took a bit of puzzle work to figure out how to set it up.  It was a lot of fun figuring it out and cleaning everything up, and the views were absolutely worth it.  The objective is crystal clear.

 

Looks like this one has all of the important pieces.  Ask the seller to keep the mount assembled, rather than packing it up.  That will save you some detective work.

 

I couldn't get used to the 0.965" EPs.  There are several great threads here on CN about non-destructive mods to let you use 1.25" diagonal and eyepieces.


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#7 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 02:33 PM

For $40, just buy it if it’s close. ...

max 1 hour drive, so yes, close.  Thanks for the packing image!

 

Assembly is incredibly easy, the objective screws on to one end and the focuser into the other. This is a great deal for $40 if the objective is in good shape. Even if it is not in great shape, as long as it is not broken, it's a good deal.

Outstanding, thanks!

 

The focuser and the lens cell simply screw onto the tube, and the dew shield screws onto the lens cell.  If it has not been cross threaded in the past, it should go together easily, though I'd clean the threads first and add a tiny touch of Superlube for a little lubrication.

 

Photos of the objective and the finder's objective would be good, especially the main objective to verify the 3 foil spacer are still in place, that there are no clamshells or cracked lens, and no fungus and cleaning scratches.. Dust is OK and the seller should not clean it to make it presentable as that probably will scratch the lens through lack of knowledge, skill or care.  But, the picture that is included of the lens cell looks good.

 

If it was a local pick-up I'd already have it as seen.

Great info to know, much appreciated.  I can request more images, and just plan to go see it ASAP.  

I found this only yesterday, and it was just the box/mount photos.  Glad I researched a bit.  Thank you!

 

It's absoutely a no brainer. 

 

Except for maybe one eyepiece it looks complete. The 7TE-5 is optically one the best 60mm achromatic telescopes you can buy. I paid more for just a mount from one. 

No brainer to those in the know (not me,) which is why I came here!  Thank you!
 



#8 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 02:38 PM

... it took a bit of puzzle work to figure out how to set it up.  It was a lot of fun figuring it out and cleaning everything up, and the views were absolutely worth it.  The objective is crystal clear.

 

Looks like this one has all of the important pieces.  Ask the seller to keep the mount assembled, rather than packing it up.  That will save you some detective work.

 

I couldn't get used to the 0.965" EPs.  There are several great threads here on CN about non-destructive mods to let you use 1.25" diagonal and eyepieces.

Great.  I'm OK with doing a puzzle.   Minor fixing/refurb OK by me as well, nothing too intensive (yet.)

 

I did see some of the EP size threads here doing my research.  I'd be sure to come back to them if/when I first get this up and running as intended.

 

Thanks!
 



#9 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 04:16 PM

I heard back. additional images:

 

Label: https://i.imgur.com/ccv8GI8.jpg

main objective: https://i.imgur.com/yVWlvwC.jpg (hazy?)

finder objective: https://i.imgur.com/KA1LNn1.jpg

 

Objective looks hazy to me, but that might be dust?  three foil shims look there.

 

Unless you folks see something glaringly wrong, I'll plan on making the drive.  

Thanks!



#10 Marc-Andre

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 05:59 PM

I heard back. additional images:

 

Label: https://i.imgur.com/ccv8GI8.jpg

main objective: https://i.imgur.com/yVWlvwC.jpg (hazy?)

finder objective: https://i.imgur.com/KA1LNn1.jpg

 

Objective looks hazy to me, but that might be dust?  three foil shims look there.

 

Unless you folks see something glaringly wrong, I'll plan on making the drive.  

Thanks!

Go!


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#11 randcpoll

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 07:32 PM

Yes, the objective is hazy but that should clean up nicely with some careful cleaning. Hopefully it is just on the front and back, but even if it is between the lenses you can clean them up gently with some cotton balls and very mild soap and water solution. Just make sure you mark the lenses with a permanent marker around the sides so you don't get the front and back elements of the glass rotated from where they are relative to one another. Also make sure you mark the location of the spacers and don't lose them!


Edited by randcpoll, 08 September 2021 - 07:33 PM.

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#12 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 07:51 PM

Go!

hah, ok!   Thanks again for the reassurance, Marc-Andre



#13 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 07:57 PM

Yes, the objective is hazy but that should clean up nicely with some careful cleaning. Hopefully it is just on the front and back, but even if it is between the lenses you can clean them up gently with some cotton balls and very mild soap and water solution. Just make sure you mark the lenses with a permanent marker around the sides so you don't get the front and back elements of the glass rotated from where they are relative to one another. Also make sure you mark the location of the spacers and don't lose them!

Great!  I'm making plans to meet up as early as tomorrow.  

 

Info seems relatively straightforward about if I'd need to go as far as cleaning between the glass.  Thanks for the pro-active info.  I'm sure I'll be back to ask more. 

 

Thanks, all!


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#14 sdedalus83

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 08:13 PM

Great!  I'm making plans to meet up as early as tomorrow.  

 

Info seems relatively straightforward about if I'd need to go as far as cleaning between the glass.  Thanks for the pro-active info.  I'm sure I'll be back to ask more. 

 

Thanks, all!

More than likely you won’t need to clean it. If you do, try with something less valuable first to get the hang of it.


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#15 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 08 September 2021 - 11:13 PM

More than likely you won’t need to clean it. If you do, try with something less valuable first to get the hang of it.

I'm accustomed to dealing with photo/camera stuff, so hopefully that's a plus.  I'm in no hurry here, so taking time is OK by me.   I was mainly hesitant between "is this what I think it is" and if so is it "something I can fix" situation.



#16 MikeBY

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Posted 09 September 2021 - 04:37 AM

Totally worth the $40..
Looks like it's missing the erecting prism. The sun projecting screen is there and perhaps the attaching rod but using these for solar observing is dangerous.

It ooks the .965 adapter and one lens is attached to the focus assembly and there is one more adapter (1 1/4?) there next to the lenses. 
I see the objective, but don't see the dew shield.  Still looks good though and a fun project to put together. 
The mount bearing lubrication is probably dried up to the point of being more like glue than grease, or may have grease on top of dried up grease. 
It cleans easily with mineral spirits, but be careful to document with pictures as you go and watch out for thin spacers and where they go.

Have fun.  That's what these are all about.

 

clear skies.

 


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#17 shredder1656

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Posted 09 September 2021 - 06:46 AM

Everyone already answered your questions, and I agree. I just wanted to comment on your name, "syzygy". My grandpa made a big deal about that word when I was a little kid. Last or second to the last page in the "S" section of any dictionary (back when we used actual printed copies). "S-y-z-y-g-y, is how it's spelled. Don't forget that. "

Your user name might be the first time I've ever seen the word in casual use again, except for when I looked it up, back in the day, to "fact check" him. LoL
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#18 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 09 September 2021 - 08:43 AM

Totally worth the $40..
...
The mount bearing lubrication is probably dried up to the point of being more like glue than grease, or may have grease on top of dried up grease. 
It cleans easily with mineral spirits, but be careful to document with pictures as you go and watch out for thin spacers and where they go.

Have fun.  That's what these are all about.

 

clear skies.

More pro-active restoring advice, great!   I've not looked into the "hows" of fixing this thing up yet (since I don't know what I don't know,) so those tips help.   Thanks, & clear skies!



#19 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 09 September 2021 - 08:48 AM

Everyone already answered your questions, and I agree. I just wanted to comment on your name, "syzygy". My grandpa made a big deal about that word when I was a little kid. Last or second to the last page in the "S" section of any dictionary (back when we used actual printed copies). "S-y-z-y-g-y, is how it's spelled. Don't forget that. "

Your user name might be the first time I've ever seen the word in casual use again, except for when I looked it up, back in the day, to "fact check" him. LoL

Gosh, I was "old" in my early 30's then.  Telling friends young children "yes, that's a real word!"

 

I've only recently created an account here on CN, and  https://www.cloudyni...er/2320-syzygy/ was already taken.   Not surprising, considering it's definition!
 



#20 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 09 September 2021 - 09:52 PM

Got it.  I think... it's 99.99% there.  Only the (useless/dangerous) sun filter and the manual (I have a PDF copy) are missing.

Diagonal, erecting prism, three EPs, dew cap, finder and objective caps... everything.

The seller's photos made it look worse than it was!

 

 

It's absoutely a no brainer. 

 

Except for maybe one eyepiece it looks complete. The 7TE-5 is optically one the best 60mm achromatic telescopes you can buy. I paid more for just a mount from one. 

Has all three volcano tops.

 

 

Go!

WENT!

 

 

Yes, the objective is hazy but that should clean up nicely with some careful cleaning. Hopefully it is just on the front and back, but even if it is between the lenses you can clean them up gently with some cotton balls and very mild soap and water solution. ...

Looks like a child used a spit covered finger to smudge-clean it 30 years ago.   There might be a couple of pin-head sized spots of fungus inside, but hard to tell before cleaning exterior glass.

 

Totally worth the $40..
Looks like it's missing the erecting prism.

...
It ooks the .965 adapter and one lens is attached to the focus assembly and there is one more adapter (1 1/4?) there next to the lenses. 
I see the objective, but don't see the dew shield. 

...

The mount bearing lubrication is probably dried up to the point of being more like glue than grease, or may have grease on top of dried up grease. 
It cleans easily with mineral spirits, but be careful to document with pictures as you go and watch out for thin spacers and where they go.

Erecting prism was attached to the focusing tube along with the missing 20mm EP.
The normal .965" eye-lens adapter is what was next to lenses.

Dew shield was attached to the objective.  Lens caps were there as well.

 

The mount bearings seem OK?  I don't know what glue/glue-grease "feels" like, since I've nothing to compare the feeling to, but the flex-controls seem to move the mount easily/accurately/slowly enough.   I may still want to cleanup this mount, but the whole GEM setup is new to me.   Mostly all of this is new to me!

 

_____________________

 

only one piece of hardly-bad news:  It was a 2hr round-trip drive alone, but it turns out that the seller's husband works only 10 mins away from me!  ooof.  

 

Worth it.  Clear skies for me tonight, not going to be able to take advantage of it.

 

Thanks again, all!  Clear skies


Edited by reverse_syzygy, 09 September 2021 - 09:57 PM.

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#21 MikeBY

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Posted 10 September 2021 - 06:32 PM

 

 

Got it.  I think... it's 99.99% there.  Only the (useless/dangerous) sun filter and the manual (I have a PDF copy) are missing.

Diagonal, erecting prism, three EPs, dew cap, finder and objective caps... everything.

The seller's photos made it look worse than it was!

Congrats.. that is SO cool.
Your first 'find" and a heck of a bargain. 

Be careful.. it's addicting !!  grin.gif grin.gif grin.gif


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#22 Marc-Andre

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Posted 10 September 2021 - 06:36 PM

Congratulations!  It is well worth it, and should give you some nice views.  


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#23 Marc-Andre

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Posted 10 September 2021 - 08:45 PM

Should you decide to clean and re-lubricate the mount, I saved this link to a PDF I found in a thread here a couple years ago.  Sorry I don't recall who originally posted this. It details the teardown and rebuild of the 7TE mount.

 

https://drive.google...Maha_5n03b/view


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#24 reverse_syzygy

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 12:17 AM

Congrats.. that is SO cool.
Your first 'find" and a heck of a bargain. 

Be careful.. it's addicting !!  grin.gif grin.gif grin.gif

Thanks!  I feel fortunate that I looked beyond the initial seller's post of just a photo of the wood tripod.

Basic detective work, most of which led back here to CN, indicated I found a keeper.  Lucked out!

 

I don't have room for another addiction! oh noes!

 

Congratulations!  It is well worth it, and should give you some nice views.  

Thanks!   Dirty main objective is still in as-bought condition, and tonight's moon was sharp and contrast-y.

The whole GEM is whack-a-doodle (my knowledge of it,) but still, got more than I expected!

 

Should you decide to clean and re-lubricate the mount, I saved this link to a PDF I found in a thread here a couple years ago.  Sorry I don't recall who originally posted this. It details the teardown and rebuild of the 7TE mount.

 

https://drive.google...Maha_5n03b/view

Outstanding!  This is precisely the info I need, since I'm effectively clueless otherwise. 

I've a ton of questions, and don't want to innundate the forums here, so even basic leads that I can follow up on and google/read are of massive assistance.

Thanks so much!

 


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#25 DreamWeaver

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 10:51 AM

… 

 

I don't have room for another addiction! oh noes!

This isn’t an addiction.  (Says the guy that started with one vintage 60mm telescope find, and now has 20+)  wink.gif   I wonder if my wife has noticed. lol.gif 
 

Congratulations on a beautiful find!  Here is a great thread if you want to learn the history of the 7TE line of telescopes.  https://www.cloudyni...e-series-scope/


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