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TAL Alcor

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#1 jcruse64

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Posted 17 November 2023 - 08:44 PM

Will post pictures later, but I picked up a TAL reflector this morning that was listed in the monthly CL-sales watch thread. 7 hour round trip, for $70, and I am very happy to add this to my collection, and now have this and the TAL-1, 4" reflector.

 

I believe this to be the little Alcor model, but this scope came with the OTA, pier mount, and the EP that was in the focuser, and that was all. Does anyone else have one of these, and especially, in the "full package"? I'd like to know what I'm missing from mine, besides the box and user manual. If anyone DOES have a user manual, would it be possible to scan and share it please?

 

Thank you,

 

Joe


Edited by jcruse64, 17 November 2023 - 08:44 PM.

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#2 jcruse64

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Posted 18 November 2023 - 09:03 AM

Pictures.

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#3 jcruse64

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Posted 18 November 2023 - 09:04 AM

More pictures.

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#4 Werckmeister

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Posted 18 November 2023 - 12:31 PM

Nice!
Here is a photo of the one I used to own, sweet little telescope! It came with a barlow and a wooden chest. 
Greetings, AndréAlkor klein.jpg
 


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#5 Dave Trott

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Posted 18 November 2023 - 01:26 PM

Congratulations on your aquisition, Joe!!

 

Here's a quick look at one of these wonderful scopes in operation: https://youtu.be/eUlEplq8c3U

 

Here it is with it's very rare descendant: https://youtu.be/KUo9VFTECU8

 

TAL 65 Telescope - frame at 6m27s.jpg


Edited by Dave Trott, 18 November 2023 - 01:29 PM.

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#6 jcruse64

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Posted 19 November 2023 - 07:42 AM

Andre' and Dave, thank you for those posts!

 

Dave, yours is gray, and the base and posts screw in together, where mine is a white finish, and has locking screws for the base and posts. I'm thinking mine is a later, newer version of this scope? So it appears that these only came with a single EP and a barlow, correct? These little setups are heavy.


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#7 jcruse64

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Posted 19 November 2023 - 04:55 PM

It appears I did not get the OEM EP, either. There was a 20mm H EP in the focuser; I believe these came with a 15mm EP that is not a standard 0.965mm. The 20mm EP has no other marking anywhere else, except "Japan" on the barrel. I've not tried it on night skies yet, but it goes in and comes out of the focuser easily enough, with a bit of pressure, and comes to focus on some items I've put the scpe on down the highway from us.

 

I'm guessing that finding a 15mm EP, barlow, and spacer at the correct size is going to be tough, but if anyone has a lead, please post here. I saw on another thread that Siebert does offer someting for this little scope, but at over $200 for the full set, that has vastly inflated the money invested in this little scope.



#8 Dave Trott

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Posted 19 November 2023 - 06:27 PM

Hi Joe,

 

Yes, I am pretty sure yours is more recent. Good luck finding the proper eyepiece and barlow. Not likely. You are lucky you have an eyepiece that fits that oddball focuser!

 

- Dave


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#9 jcruse64

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Posted 19 November 2023 - 08:59 PM

Here are pics of that EP. So definitely 0.965, as it fits in my little Sears 60x700mm scope. And... it works just fine. We are really clouding up for a good chance at rain tomorrow, but when I got home a short while ago, there were a few holes in the clouds, and Jupiter got clear of them, so I dragged the scope out for first light, hoping I could reach focus with this Japanese EP left in the scope. It did just fine, and I was able to get on Jupiter very quickly with it. Came to a very sharp focus, and 3 of the moons easily popped out for me. Could also make out bands on the planet, though not in great detail, but VERY much more than I expected or hoped. Sadly, the Moon is shrouded, but I was still able to get fairly good focus on it also, in spite of clouds veiling it.

 

With the lack of back-focus issues, it's got me wondering just how old this one is, and if a change had been made in later scopes, AFTER the change made to white paint and slip together mount/tripod pieces. I will try out some other .965 EP's I have around the house later this week, and will also check out how some of my 0.965 barlows do with it. If these work out, it's time to go over the 0.965 threads on this forum and find some EP's with better eye relief.

 

The focuser really is very smooth, and the alt-az mount can be tightened down to the desired resistance for manual tracking. There are NO jitters on this thing when focusing in, so far, and I was really messing with the focuser on Jupiter, just to see how easy its action was. This is going to end up being a nice little grag-n-go scope, especially with a laser pointer on it. I used the peep sights on both Jupiter and the Moon, and it wasn't a lot of fun, especially on Jupiter, but the system works a treat, and it is a very simple system. So far, I'm really glad this one popped up and that I was able to make the 7 hour round trip.I wonder how it would do set up in tabletop mode on the hood of my '73 Power Wagon???

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#10 jcruse64

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Posted 22 November 2023 - 10:29 PM

Rummaged around my stuff and found a few 0.965 EP's to try out in this scope, including the yellow and green Sears EP's, and a 22mm and a 12.5mm of unknown origin. Didn't have enough in-travel for the 12.5mm, and the 22mm had mushy view. Not enough in-travel for the yellow Sears EP, but both green EP's worked. Also found a Celestron 2X barlow, and tried it with the green EP's and the 20mm that came with the scope. At first, not enough in-travel to reach focus with any of them, but messing with the barlow, the barrel screws in, and I loosened it a few turns, and was able to reach focus on both the Moon and Jupiter. The Moon looked pretty nice in the barlowed 20mm EP. Jupiter was not quite as sharp as with the Moon, or as with the 20MM alone, but I could make out bands and 4 moons were decent little pin points.

 

I'm going to start shopping around for a good quality 20MM, 15MM, and 12.5MM, and a barlow that will work with this scope.


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#11 GaryM

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Posted 24 November 2023 - 06:57 PM

Would this be the Alcor 65?

 

I have a brand new one. I'm attaching a few photos so you can see it new in the box.

 

 

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#12 GaryM

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Posted 24 November 2023 - 07:01 PM

Here's the cabinet label and the packing list. It looks like 1994 for the year.

 

 

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#13 jcruse64

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Posted 25 November 2023 - 10:34 PM

Yep!!!



#14 grendel

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Posted 25 November 2023 - 10:58 PM

I have the newer 1996 version with the polystyrene case liner, and have found that binocular eyepieces fit and work quite well, I am sure that .965 eyepieces dont fit in mine. the barlow is in 2 parts to give 3 different magnifications. I will measure them later and report back, mine is just called the tal as it is pre the alcor name.

NB I have measured my eyepiece as 24mm- 0.945" and its a very tight fit so .965" (24.5mm) wont fit.


Edited by grendel, 26 November 2023 - 12:57 AM.

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#15 Steve_M_M

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Posted 25 November 2023 - 11:31 PM

Joe,

 

Congrats on the purchase.  I currently have two of these, both 1994 older versions.  They are fantastic little scopes.  Great for kids 5-10 or adults when elevated.

 

You have the newer version.  Year 200 and beyond.  If the mirror as as good as older versions, you will want to use a better eyepiece for best views.

 

The old ones came with a 20mm eyepiece and a barlow.  Different configurations allow different magnifications, more than just two.  There is also a camels hair brush for cleaning and a nice screwdriver.

 

Enjoy!


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#16 grendel

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 02:41 AM

Joe,

 

Congrats on the purchase.  I currently have two of these, both 1994 older versions.  They are fantastic little scopes.  Great for kids 5-10 or adults when elevated.

 

You have the newer version.  Year 200 and beyond.  If the mirror as as good as older versions, you will want to use a better eyepiece for best views.

 

The old ones came with a 20mm eyepiece and a barlow.  Different configurations allow different magnifications, more than just two.  There is also a camels hair brush for cleaning and a nice screwdriver.

 

Enjoy!

true, the views through these little reflectors are just stunning for the size, and the scopes themselves are just so robust, when i picked mine up, every screw was loose, yet when I tightened them, the scope was still perfectly collimated



#17 grendel

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 03:07 AM

they are great little scopes, producing views way beyond expectations, here are some measurements of the eyepieces / barlow parts

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Edited by grendel, 26 November 2023 - 03:11 AM.

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#18 grendel

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 03:12 AM

and some more

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#19 grendel

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 03:13 AM

and more

 

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#20 grendel

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 03:14 AM

last one

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#21 jcruse64

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 08:32 AM

Joe,

 

Congrats on the purchase.  I currently have two of these, both 1994 older versions.  They are fantastic little scopes.  Great for kids 5-10 or adults when elevated.

 

You have the newer version.  Year 200 and beyond.  If the mirror as as good as older versions, you will want to use a better eyepiece for best views.

 

The old ones came with a 20mm eyepiece and a barlow.  Different configurations allow different magnifications, more than just two.  There is also a camels hair brush for cleaning and a nice screwdriver.

 

Enjoy!

Steve,

 

thank you! Have to agree, this is a much later version than yours. I can get all of my limited collection of 0.965 EP's to fit into the focuser, though a few are REALLY tight. The only newer barlow I have on hand (excluding the ones from classic kits, like Sears) is a Celestron 2X, and it actually fits a bit loosely in the focuser. There is a spot on the focuser for a retention screw, but it is long gone. What I got in this purchase was just the scope, base, and pier, and a 20mm Japanese EP that is not original to the kit. Thankfully, that clued me in to the fact that I might be able to find a really good quality 0.965 EP or two to make this scope shine.

 

The mirror is actually fairly clean, though it did not come with its dust cap, and has shown some nice, crisp views with what I have to work with. With a really good EP or two and a real finder or a pointer, this will be an easy choice for grab-n-go.


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#22 jcruse64

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Posted 26 November 2023 - 08:33 AM

they are great little scopes, producing views way beyond expectations, here are some measurements of the eyepieces / barlow parts

Thank you, grendel!



#23 LukaszLu

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Posted 25 June 2024 - 02:27 PM

Hello, let me add to this thread, as I just came across a fairly well-preserved Alcor copy from 1990 and immediately came across the problem with the eyepiece discussed here. And it's not that it's missing - it's included in the set, as is the barlow lens and an additional spacer sleeve. The problem is that - contrary to what many colleagues write - it is an eyepiece of very, very average quality. Despite the solid construction of metal elements, optically it is an ordinary, cheap Ramsden, with a very small field of view, without even anti-reflective layers. The image is quite decent in the very center of the field of view. Towards the edges however the image loses sharpness and chromatic aberration becomes clearly visible, which amazed me when I looked at the Moon for the first time, surrounded by a colorful rim as in an ordinary achromat...

 

Fortunately, the non-standard size of the eyepiece sleeve allows for replacing original Ramsden with microscope eyepieces. All you need is a strip of plastic from a blister pack to mount such a microscope eyepiece safely and securely in the eyepiece sleeve. I tested the most ordinary PZO microscope eyepieces from the 1970s (probably Kellners) - each of them gave incomparably better images than the original Ramsden, so in my opinion it is worth collecting a set of such microscope alternatives to fully use the capabilities of this small telescope - no matter if you have the original eyepiece.

 

IMG_20240625_133455_2.jpg

 

IMG_20240625_134102.jpg

 

Original spacer sleeve and microscope eyepieces:

 

IMG_20240625_175213.jpg

 

IMG_20240625_175259.jpg


Edited by LukaszLu, 26 June 2024 - 08:22 AM.

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#24 LukaszLu

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Posted 25 June 2024 - 02:28 PM

Original eyepiece. What's inside:

 

 

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#25 starfinder123123

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Posted 25 June 2024 - 03:13 PM

Here is my TAL from 1986. It did not come with eyepieces, it fits 1.25 only. No eyepiece comes into focus except my homemade eyepiece made out of the old binoculars. However, I have an Orion Shorty Barlow and when I unscrew the bottom and screw it on my regular eyepieces they do reach the focus easily. But, when i use the Barlow as it comes i gave the same not enough in focus. Tried moving mirror and it didn’t work. 
Good find! 

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Edited by starfinder123123, 25 June 2024 - 03:14 PM.

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