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Vintage Selsi 75mm f/12

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#1 dbledsoe

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Posted 15 October 2006 - 10:23 PM

There was a Selsi 75mm f/12 refractor on equatorial mount for sale here on CN that went largely ignored. I subsequently bought it and must say it is quite an incredible scope. I have owned a lot of vintage scopes over the last 30 years but have never seen one similar of similar build type to the this Selsi.

I know some history of Selsi. They have been an importer of telescopes and binoculars since the early 1900's. Selsi imported many telescopes and binoculars, mainly of French origin up until post WWII and then slowly began importing Japanese scope in tandem with French scopes. Selsi standards were very high with regards their imported scopes and binoculars.

My Selsi is a 75mm refractor of 910mm focal length making it an f/12 scope. Color correction is astounding, as is the star test. As near perfect inside/outside focal patterns as one could hope for, but showing just a hint of pinched optics, which should be easy to correct once I get a spanner wrench that will allow me to loosen the objective retaining ring a tad.

The focuser is bult like no other Japanese scope I have ever encountered, a totally different design from Tasco, Mayflower, Unitron, Towa, Carton, etc. that I have come across in the past. It is finely built and thoroughly thought out. This is without doubt the most interesting vintage Japanese telescope I have come across.

Regards,

Don

#2 trainsktg

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Posted 15 October 2006 - 11:19 PM

I'm sure you suspected this was coming... :lol:

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#3 Glassthrower

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Posted 16 October 2006 - 07:42 AM

:lol:

Yeah, let's see!

Clear dark skies...

MikeG

#4 DAVIDG

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Posted 16 October 2006 - 07:52 AM

My first 'scope was a 80mm Selsi refractor that I purchased in 1975 after a Summer of saving all my grass cutting money. I wish I never sold it. As you stated , it had excellent optics. I was able to purchased a clock drive for it from the US office located in NJ. Over the years I have purchased a number of their binoculars, that were made in the 50's and 60's and they also have excellent optics.
- Dave

#5 dbledsoe

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Posted 16 October 2006 - 04:34 PM

I'm sure you suspected this was coming... :lol:


:stooges: Yep, after I posted the report I was wondering if that might pop up. I'll try to snap some pics this evening, provided the clouds don't get worse than they are right now and decide to open up on us.

Don

#6 Jae

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Posted 16 October 2006 - 07:05 PM

I saw that and it looked really nicely made, a step above some of the other classics. Seeems it has been confirmed. Every now and then you get a good one.

Anyone looking at the TOWA 80 ?? for a hundred bucks ? I'll bet it keeps up with the Selsi.... :jump: although it may not look as good. :grin:

#7 Selecter

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 02:22 AM

Selsi is still in business.

http://www.selsioptics.com/index.htm

look at the Model 247 telescope - Like a trip back to the 60's, except it's brand new! It even has the little accessory tray lamp! look at the big picture.

http://www.selsiopti...om/TELESCOP.htm

Really cool. Also note on the cat page they offer 2 models - the 245 and the 245 C which stands for china. So they set apart the chinese made stuff.

I have an email into them asking for pricing on the 247. I think that scope is dead sexy, and if it's not thousands, I'm gonna get one. Just like a trip back in time. I love the old refractors with the wooden tripods! :bigshock:

#8 refractory

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 10:55 AM

Selsi is just about 8 miles from me- maybe I should take a gander on over....

Jess Tauber

#9 Selecter

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 11:30 AM

Bummer. got an email from them saying that Model 247 is discontinued. :ranting: :ranting:

#10 Jae

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 11:32 AM

The 247 looks just like the Towa 339. If you find that it's too pricy, you should look at this:

http://www.cloudynig...t=&cat=4&page=1

#11 Selecter

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 11:53 AM

Thanks Jae. That scope is sold as soon as we can come to an agreement on shipping. Waiting for a answer from the seller.

#12 Selecter

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 12:58 PM

ack. erk. Scope was sold to a local member close to him.

#13 Jae

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Posted 17 October 2006 - 07:20 PM

Too bad, a bargain doesn't last.....hope it's a CN member that bought it. I have one and it's built like a tank and you can use a binoviewer on it w/o a barlow.

#14 dbledsoe

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Posted 19 October 2006 - 08:14 PM

I'm sorry guys but the weather has not been cooperating to let me haul the Selsi 75 out to snap some pics. Hopefully this weekend is predicted to be better and if it is I'll snap some and post them then. The weather here in Boise is my fault because I got a new (to me) C14. I'm a refractor guy but have to admit that I have wanted a C14 for 30 years. This one is a wee bit rough but it will come around. It's a smooth orange tube of 70's vintage (as best I can tell) so I'd guess it too fits in here with classic scopes.

Don

#15 tybee

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Posted 20 October 2006 - 09:45 PM

It's a smooth orange tube of 70's vintage (as best I can tell) so I'd guess it too fits in here with classic scopes.


Definitely!

#16 habsburg8

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Posted 23 October 2006 - 04:50 PM

I have that identical telescope, EXCEPT it is marked Sans & Streiffe. Same equatorial mounting, same tripod legs, same lens cell with (different) serial number, same everything. I even have the original instruction booklet!

The glass mix is exceptionally good, but as with your Selsi the optics are pinched. I have tried rotating the lens elements with respect to each other, but to no avail. It appears to be an inherent 'problem' with these older 910mm objective lenses. Sometimes rotating the crown and flint elements with respect to each other can significantly improve the high power image, but not always. However, the low power views are still great!

The 76.2mm telescope is a solidly-constructed telescope. Interesting collectible, but I like my 3-inch f/12 Lafayette Radio Electronics "Arcturus" from 1961 much better.

Do you have the original instruction booklet for your Selsi? What is the model number on the focuser plate? How did the seller know that it was from the year 1965? I am of the opinion that my Sans & Streiffe is from the late 1950s, but have not been able to date the scope accurately.

#17 dbledsoe

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 08:04 PM

Hello John,

It's been a few years but it's great to hear from you again.

Unfortunately I did not get the original manual with the Selsi 75 f/12 scope. And I have no idea how the previous owner came up with the 1965 date, or at least he didn't reveal it to me.

As to the pinched optics, it should be easy enough to correct but the objective cell is a one piece unit and the retainer ring is buried deep (accessible only from the back side of the cell, the side that screws onto the tube) and will require a proper spanner to loosen, which I need to order. The objective/cell has never been violated, as best I can tell, and I don't want to be the one to try loosening it with the wrong tool and muck it up. So that will have to wait. Sadly I haven't had the Selsi out under a good night of seeing (can be rare here at my location) so I cannot speak to the quality of the optics in terms up higher magnification, and Jupiter was just too low in the sky when I first got it to on a planet (and I've been too lazy to get up early and check our Saturn with it).

I've attached a couple of pictures showing the name plate on the focuser, and what I think is a unique focuser assembly. It may look similar to other scopes of the period but it is very different in small design details.

I'd like to see pictures of your Sans & Streiffe if you get the chance.

Don

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#18 dbledsoe

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Posted 25 October 2006 - 08:06 PM

~

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#19 Jae

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Posted 21 November 2006 - 10:14 PM

Don,

Doesn't this look similar ? My Bushnell Sky Chief II with the similar mount we were talking about in the other thread.

Jae

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#20 Selecter

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Posted 22 November 2006 - 08:58 AM

very nice. so refreshing from the plastic of today.

#21 dbledsoe

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Posted 22 November 2006 - 11:03 AM

Don,

Doesn't this look similar ? My Bushnell Sky Chief II with the similar mount we were talking about in the other thread.

Jae


Jae,

Too cool! That's the only other one I've seen with a focuser like that. I wonder if all Bushnell Sky Chief II's used that focuser? The Selsi 75 I have has no stamping on the focuser nameplate whereas your Bushnell SC II is stamped APL. Now if we could only track down those codes...

Don

#22 Jae

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Posted 22 November 2006 - 01:51 PM

Don,

Doesn't this look similar ? My Bushnell Sky Chief II with the similar mount we were talking about in the other thread.

Jae


Jae,

Too cool! That's the only other one I've seen with a focuser like that. I wonder if all Bushnell Sky Chief II's used that focuser? The Selsi 75 I have has no stamping on the focuser nameplate whereas your Bushnell SC II is stamped APL. Now if we could only track down those codes...

Don


Don,

It would be interesting to see if Steve's Bushnell had the same set up.

For those that don't know how this focuser works, I found out after trying to tighten the screws shown in the picture in the dark as the focuser was sagging. It did nothing. When I removed the screws, the cover protected another mechanism inside (I think it was copper tabs that apply pressure) that was used to tighten or loosen the focuser action. I'll take a pic if I get a chance later.

Definitely a higher end design.

Jae

#23 dbledsoe

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Posted 22 November 2006 - 02:06 PM


Don,

It would be interesting to see if Steve's Bushnell had the same set up.

For those that don't know how this focuser works, I found out after trying to tighten the screws shown in the picture in the dark as the focuser was sagging. It did nothing. When I removed the screws, the cover protected another mechanism inside (I think it was copper tabs that apply pressure) that was used to tighten or loosen the focuser action. I'll take a pic if I get a chance later.

Definitely a higher end design.

Jae


Jae,

I too would say it's a higher end design. I had to take my focuser apart to straighten the pinion shaft was bent in shipping. That's when I found what a nice design it was what with the copper pinion shaft retainer/tensioner. Just be careful with the four small screws that hold the cover in place. If one doesn't use a proper fitting screwdriver the slots are not very deep and can be easily marred. :idea:

Don


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