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Takahashi TS-65/500 Cleaning & Restoration

Classic Collimation Equipment Optics Refractor
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#1 Bomber Bob

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Posted 05 January 2022 - 10:15 PM

I started with this Nasty & Heavily Modified 1970s Takahashi TS-65/500 Triplet Semi-Apochromat... today, at about 1500.  I didn't finish with the basic OTA cleaning & lens work until 1900 -- with just a few old dude breaks.

 

TAK TS-65x500 Delivered S01 - Complete Nasty Package.jpg

 

Previous owner stuck two 2" strips of velcro on the scope -- 1 on the focuser, and 1 on the OTA near the lens cell.  I got the Velcro off, but I'm leaving the sticky stuff on for now.  Took long enough to un-mod the ATM finder bracket attached to the focuser!  Then, a basic scrubbing of all the hardware...


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#2 Bomber Bob

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Posted 05 January 2022 - 10:32 PM

Cleaning a TAK TS Triplet Lens

 

TAK TS-65x500 Restore S11 - Lens Cleaning (Initial Front).jpg

 

Big Relief!  After cleaning to the 2 outer faces, I saw a very nice lens, with just a few "ghosts" of old water-spots between E1 & E2.  [You can see the Ghosts at 3, 5, & 7 o'clock positions in the 2nd lens pix.  Very faint, and tough to see except at an angle.]

 

Naturally, I couldn't leave those imperfections!

 

TAK TS-65x500 Restore S12 - Lens Cleaning (Water Spot Ghosts).jpg TAK TS-65x500 Restore S13 - Lens Cleaning (Out of Cell SD).jpg

TAK TS-65x500 Restore S15 - Lens Cleaning (3 Elements).jpg TAK TS-65x500 Restore S16 - Lens Cleaning (Spring Ring).jpg

TAK TS-65x500 Restore S19 - Lens Cleaning (No Ghosts).jpg TAK TS-65x500 Restore S22 - Lens Cleaning (Clean Rear).jpg

 

BEFORE I took the lens out of its cell, I was very very (very!!) nervous about working on it.  But... Tak made this thing BB-proof:  The lens edges are blackened, but there's a Big ^ alignment mark drawn in light gray pencil across the 3 elements, and pointing, Up You Doofus!!  AND, the 6 spacers are all firmly attached to both sides of E2 -- no way to mess up spacer placement or alignment -- big sigh of relief when I saw that!  TAK also numbered each element on the edges...

 

Luckily, the old water spots were on the back of E1 only.  E2 & E3 were immaculate.  E2... has deep blue (w/ hint o'green) coatings.  E3 has lighter blue-violet coatings.  E1 has a very very light violet coating on the sky face only...

 

I started with 91% pure alcohol... barely made a dent.  Tried peroxide... ditto.  So, I'm thinking, did the dried water etch the uncoated glass??  Nope!  I don't think I've ever used Windex on a lens before, but I wet a lens tissue with it, scrunched it up into a ball, and went at the largest spot -- circular swipes, back & forth...  Bingo!  It vanished.  Repeated on the other 3 spots, and now it's squeaky clean!  I finished polishing with BB's Breath & tissues.

 

I managed to get all 3 Elements re-assembled with no dust between them -- a minor miracle.  Got them aligned with the ^ and back into the cell.  Note the Springy Ring with its 3 raised tabs at 120* intervals.  It's a fancy unthreaded cushion that keeps the 3 pieces of glass from rotating when the retaining ring is threaded back in...  Leave it to Tak to think of these things, cause it's a no-taped sides ultra-tight cell.

 

Can't wait to DPAC this old triplet...


Edited by Bomber Bob, 06 January 2022 - 08:28 AM.

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#3 jragsdale

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Posted 05 January 2022 - 11:18 PM

Cleaning a triplet, nice! Never had the pleasure.



#4 Astrojensen

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 01:00 AM

My late mentor Per Darnell had one of these (in mint condition, I might add), and it was one sharp little scope. You quickly began reaching for barlows and short orthos, though, because of the short focal length. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark


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#5 Bomber Bob

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 08:31 AM

My late mentor Per Darnell had one of these (in mint condition, I might add), and it was one sharp little scope. You quickly began reaching for barlows and short orthos, though, because of the short focal length. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark

Yeah, I do that often with my excellent Lafayette (SYW) 60/420, and it takes "ramping up" the power well.  I'm expecting even more from the TS after its overhaul.

 

The TS came with its original .965" adapter, but since it's a "fast" 65mm, I'll use 1.25" accessories, and low-power wide-field eyepieces most often.  The Lafayette will probably go back on the matching green Dakin 4.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 06 January 2022 - 08:40 AM.

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#6 Bomber Bob

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 08:35 AM

What do y'all think of the DIY Finder Bracket MOD??   I'm pretty sure the guy removed the Scope Label to make the base flush with the focuser casting...  WITW??   Even I wouldn't do that.  I'd scrounge for a genuine Tak Finder Bracket with tube ring -- like you see on the earliest FC-50s:

 

FC-50 - 1982 Takahashi Mount Options (Japanese).jpg


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#7 Bomber Bob

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 12:26 PM

DPAC - Doesn't Lie...

 

FL = 500mm (published)  /  511mm (DPAC)

 

AF = No Large Zones.  Couple of small / dimmer areas (E1 "ghosts"?)

 

IF / 4 Bars = Identical Bar Width.  Bars 1 & 4 (outer) -- slight outward bend at the center.

IF / 3 Bars = Perfect -- no observable deviations.

 

OF / 4 Bars = Bars 2 & 4 identical width; Bars 1 & 4 very slightly wider.

OF / 3 Bars = Perfect -- no observable deviations.

 

Got it in the shed on the VG2, ready to do my MW Tower artificial star tests.  Then, gonna pop in the Lunt for some Solar...


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#8 PawPaw

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 01:26 PM

DPAC - Doesn't Lie...

 

FL = 500mm (published)  /  511mm (DPAC)

 

AF = No Large Zones.  Couple of small / dimmer areas (E1 "ghosts"?)

 

IF / 4 Bars = Identical Bar Width.  Bars 1 & 4 (outer) -- slight outward bend at the center.

IF / 3 Bars = Perfect -- no observable deviations.

 

OF / 4 Bars = Bars 2 & 4 identical width; Bars 1 & 4 very slightly wider.

OF / 3 Bars = Perfect -- no observable deviations.

 

Got it in the shed on the VG2, ready to do my MW Tower artificial star tests.  Then, gonna pop in the Lunt for some Solar...

BB....Do you DPAC before you disassemble the lens for cleaning?  From the description of your DPAC looks like you have another winner.

 

I have one I just received that has some mold spots that cannot be neglected any longer but before I clean I thought about taking a DPAC baseline test.

 

Don


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#9 Bomber Bob

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 02:57 PM

BB....Do you DPAC before you disassemble the lens for cleaning?  From the description of your DPAC looks like you have another winner.

 

I have one I just received that has some mold spots that cannot be neglected any longer but before I clean I thought about taking a DPAC baseline test.

 

Don

Don, most times the lenses arrive clean, so not needed.  This one was so nasty...

 

If the mold spots are small / unobtrusive, it probably won't affect DPAC -- but Dave G. is the Expert.


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#10 Bomber Bob

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Posted 06 January 2022 - 03:14 PM

It's storming now, but a couple of hours ago, the Sun was blazing in clear & blue.  Good tests on the MW Tower shiny / starry bits.  The boxes on the tower are mostly dull gray; but, there is a white sticker with faded red & black lettering.  The TS resolved the WARNING at 200x (spectros PL5 + Tak 2x Barlow), with no glare / blur from the backgrounds.  Kinda dim, but legible!

 

Natural Colors:  All the old oaks around here are bare, but the TS had no trouble breaking out the subtle grays & browns from the black shadows.  No glare / dispersion on bark edges (like crater walls) against sunlit or shadow areas.  I'm fairly certain it'll do very well on the Moon.  How will it do with bright red / white / blue stars?  I may get a chance to test it FRI night...

 

Sunspots!  I saw 2 clusters -- smaller near the limb, and larger near the middle.  Ultra-sharp at 50x (spectros KE10), with bright facule in & around the limb cluster; and very sharp at both 67x & 100x with the spectros PL7.5 & PL5, respectively.


Edited by Bomber Bob, 06 January 2022 - 03:15 PM.

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#11 Bomber Bob

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Posted 07 January 2022 - 10:30 PM

Overall Excellent Star & Sky Tests tonight under adverse conditions...

 

IMO, the triplet is closer to APO than the SEMI in its name.  I'll validate against my amazing FC-50, but I suspect the similarities & differences will even out across the spectrum.

 

Lunar Maria gray shades aren't as obvious as in that Hiyoshi 60F15, but considering the TS is about half the length...  it's as amazing as the FC-50.  But, the grays are as subtle.  I think... as the views are overall brighter than the Hiyoshi, my old eyes get a bit overwhelmed.  A younger person could have a different opinion.

 

I was most pleased with Star Colors.  Overall, about as natural as my FC's.  

 

Star Clusters... Pop!  RKEs 28 & 21 --> 18x & 24x -- I'm gonna have a lot of fun with these on better nights.

 

Clouds & Rain return tomorrow; but, with luck, I'll get to try for low Jupiter on MON night...


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#12 Bomber Bob

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Posted 08 January 2022 - 10:15 AM

TS-65/500 & Accessories

 

More Testing to come, but I saw last night that the views are as sensitive to accessory selections as my other APOs.

 

Baader Prism Diagonal:  I saw zero difference in star tests between straight-through & diagonal attached.  Ditto for lunar views.

 

Takahashi 2x Barlow:  Not a factor.  Didn't > / < false color.

 

University Optics HD Orthoscopics:  These Japan-made 1.25" eyepieces were sold under other brands / labels.  IMO, they're a good mid-range choice for longish old scopes.  They're not a good match for my APOs, including the TS.  The off-axis cone is small -- when I saw a bright yellow rind, I knew I wasn't looking straight in.

 

The spectros .965" 7.5mm & 5mm Plossls gave the best high-power views, in combination with the 2x Barlow.  Didn't get a chance to test my CZJ eyepieces.  


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#13 sdedalus83

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Posted 08 January 2022 - 05:47 PM

Here’s a nice replacement for your mangled finder mount. It’s even the right color.

 

https://zenmarket.jp...Code=1030436182


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#14 Bomber Bob

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Posted 08 January 2022 - 09:36 PM

2nd Sky Tests - Fancy Eyepieces

 

Brandons:  These will be the go-to units for splitting tight doubles.  Tightest Airy Disks, smallest micro-dot stars.  

 

Naglers:  VG all-rounders in the TS, but...

 

Radians:  Mama Mia!!  Perfect for the TS.  I'll have that waxing Moon image at 63x in my noggin for a while...  Jupiter's disk is white with a hint of gray -- just like my FC-50.

 

Honorable Mention:  ZEN Big Box included that SVBONY AE (Aspheric Eyepiece) 10mm.  While it doesn't have the crispness of a Brandon, it presents stars, the lunar disk, & Jupiter with the same colors as a Brandon.  Not bad.

 

AT Paradigms:  The 3.2 adds a very faint gold to the disks of the Moon & Jupiter.  For the price, they're a good mid-range eyepiece for the TS.  Radian 4mm whoops it; but, I could buy 3 Paradigms for the price of 1 mint used Radian...  These will definitely be used with The Public.



#15 CHASLX200

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Posted 09 January 2022 - 06:59 AM

2nd Sky Tests - Fancy Eyepieces

 

Brandons:  These will be the go-to units for splitting tight doubles.  Tightest Airy Disks, smallest micro-dot stars.  

 

Naglers:  VG all-rounders in the TS, but...

 

Radians:  Mama Mia!!  Perfect for the TS.  I'll have that waxing Moon image at 63x in my noggin for a while...  Jupiter's disk is white with a hint of gray -- just like my FC-50.

 

Honorable Mention:  ZEN Big Box included that SVBONY AE (Aspheric Eyepiece) 10mm.  While it doesn't have the crispness of a Brandon, it presents stars, the lunar disk, & Jupiter with the same colors as a Brandon.  Not bad.

 

AT Paradigms:  The 3.2 adds a very faint gold to the disks of the Moon & Jupiter.  For the price, they're a good mid-range eyepiece for the TS.  Radian 4mm whoops it; but, I could buy 3 Paradigms for the price of 1 mint used Radian...  These will definitely be used with The Public.

I love my 3.2mm with my C102.
 


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#16 Bowlerhat

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Posted 09 January 2022 - 07:22 AM

My late mentor Per Darnell had one of these (in mint condition, I might add), and it was one sharp little scope. You quickly began reaching for barlows and short orthos, though, because of the short focal length. 

 

 

Clear skies!

Thomas, Denmark

That's when you grab it's big brother, the TS65 1000mm tongue2.gif


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#17 Bowlerhat

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Posted 09 January 2022 - 07:23 AM

What do y'all think of the DIY Finder Bracket MOD??   I'm pretty sure the guy removed the Scope Label to make the base flush with the focuser casting...  WITW??   Even I wouldn't do that.  I'd scrounge for a genuine Tak Finder Bracket with tube ring -- like you see on the earliest FC-50s:

 

attachicon.gifFC-50 - 1982 Takahashi Mount Options (Japanese).jpg

Quote me for heresy but I swear someday I might just drill some holes onto the OTA for dovetails.

I love my 60mm tak but that ring is so bulky


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#18 Bomber Bob

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Posted 09 January 2022 - 11:19 AM

Here’s a nice replacement for your mangled finder mount. It’s even the right color.

 

https://zenmarket.jp...Code=1030436182

Thanks for the Link -- I bought it!

 

Tak TS65-500 A11 - 68mm Tube Ring Finder Bracket (FL BT).jpg

 

Now I gotta clean up the finder -- it's NASTY, too!!


Edited by Bomber Bob, 09 January 2022 - 11:29 AM.

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#19 Bomber Bob

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Posted 12 January 2022 - 02:12 PM

TS is back in the house.  Got a couple of minor things to fix before the new Finder Ring arrives from Japan:

 

- "Unstick" the dewshield from the outer lens cell.  FYI:  This dewshield is relatively shorter than the ones on my other 60mm-class fracs.

- Plug the 2 holes in the focuser; and, adjust the focuser tension -- a bit too stiff.

- Flock from the lens cell to the 1st Baffle.

- Clean off those 2 sticky rectangles.

- Make / find a lens cover.



#20 Bomber Bob

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 11:23 PM

- Got the dewshield un-stuck.  With the lens removed, and the outer cell + shield off the OTA, I gently tapped along the shield edge with a small rubber mallet.  Heard a faint clink, and the threads were mated again.  Came off normally.  Lots of dust and old grease!  Got that cleaned with 409, then spread a couple of drops of machine oil in the threads with my finger.

 

- Removed the 2 sticky rectangles.  I have an OLD blow dryer (cord isn't grounded - just 2 prongs!) that I use for dew evaporating & such -- Debbie won't let me use it in the house, as it trips the GFCI breaker!  Blasted each one for a couple of minutes on HOT, and the adhesive rolled up like old boogers...  [There's an image for ya!]  I also went over the whole tube with Turtle Wax Rubbing Compound.  Cleaned it.  Then polished with Meguiars -- what white paint there is now looks bright white...

 

- Flocked the 1st third of the OTA with thin flat black velvet.  It's removable -- didn't glue it down.

 

- Threaded those 2 holes in the focuser to standard #10-32, and installed a pair of chrome Allen-head grub screws.  Looks close enough to something Tak would do to fool the non-Takaholics.  


Edited by Bomber Bob, 13 January 2022 - 11:26 PM.

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#21 sdedalus83

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Posted 13 January 2022 - 11:29 PM

Takaholism - just a little taste and you’re sunk.


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#22 Lentini

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Posted 14 January 2022 - 12:23 PM

You're doing a good thing saving this baby.  Looking forward to seeing more pics.


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#23 Bomber Bob

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Posted 14 January 2022 - 12:31 PM

You're doing a good thing saving this baby.  Looking forward to seeing more pics.

Thanks!  Monday I'm gonna check with JD about powder-coating both TS's.  If he can get to them next week, I'll get that done before putting the finder on the 65.  Then, I'll post some purdee pix!


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#24 Lentini

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Posted 14 January 2022 - 01:56 PM

Powder coating has to be done to metal parts, and you have to take all the plastic parts off before powder coating.... Do I have that right?   I was going to have my TS powder coated, but my focuser seems pretty stuck to the optical tube. I'm afraid to put too much force into it trying to get it off. Although I do have one of those strap wrenches I could try. Hmm. 



#25 Bomber Bob

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Posted 14 January 2022 - 02:22 PM

Check for a TINY grub screw along the outermost band / flange of the focuser.  On both my TS models, this grub is on Top, and aligned with the large lock knob.  Tough to see! as they're painted black.

 

You don't have to remove (& possibly lose!) them, just back out enough to move the focuser (or, lens cell - it has the same grubs)...




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