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GSO RC's - New and improved?

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#1 KevinDuch

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 05:34 PM

I am seriously considering the purchase of Agena Astro's version of the 14" or 16" GSO Ritchey Chretien Telescope. After reading several bad reviews about this scope due to collimation problems and stray light issues, it appears as if Guan Sheng Optical has corrected a few of the problems associated with these truss tube telescopes and the next shipment of scopes should have these improvements. 1. The focuser is now decoupled from the primary mirror assembly.  2.  Improved baffle design.  3.  The focuser is now EAF compatible.  My plan is to put this on a permanent pier in a new ROR observatory later this year for DSO Astrophotography.  Paramount ME Mount. Agena Astro claims to do a full optical and mechanical inspection of these scopes before sending them out to customers, so I feel better about this.  Do any of you think I am making a mistake??  Should I be looking at a Planewave CDK14 instead??  I didn't really want to spend that much money, but I also don't want to spend my retirement fussing over a scope that just won't work.  What do you think??  Is it worth taking a chance?


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#2 hyiger

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 06:10 PM

I would just go with the CDK14 and be done with it. The Planewave costs 2.5x more but then I think you are getting 5x the quality in return. 


Edited by hyiger, 12 February 2024 - 06:12 PM.

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#3 Steven

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 07:39 PM

I am seriously considering the purchase of Agena Astro's version of the 14" or 16" GSO Ritchey Chretien Telescope. After reading several bad reviews about this scope due to collimation problems and stray light issues, it appears as if Guan Sheng Optical has corrected a few of the problems associated with these truss tube telescopes and the next shipment of scopes should have these improvements. 1. The focuser is now decoupled from the primary mirror assembly.  2.  Improved baffle design.  3.  The focuser is now EAF compatible.  My plan is to put this on a permanent pier in a new ROR observatory later this year for DSO Astrophotography.  Paramount ME Mount. Agena Astro claims to do a full optical and mechanical inspection of these scopes before sending them out to customers, so I feel better about this.  Do any of you think I am making a mistake??  Should I be looking at a Planewave CDK14 instead??  I didn't really want to spend that much money, but I also don't want to spend my retirement fussing over a scope that just won't work.  What do you think??  Is it worth taking a chance?

Not only the focuser is now decoupled but most importantly a vastly improved primary mirror cell design (version 3 or later).

I have zero issues with my RC12 and RC16.

Attached Thumbnails

  • RC16-V1-Primary Mirror Housing-2.jpg
  • RC16-V3-Primary Mirror Housing-2.jpg

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#4 hyiger

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 08:13 PM

I thought about trading in my C11 for an RC10 (or maybe RC14) but then I already think collimating the C11 is a PITA so the RC is just going to be even more. 



#5 carolinaskies

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 08:24 PM

I am seriously considering the purchase of Agena Astro's version of the 14" or 16" GSO Ritchey Chretien Telescope. After reading several bad reviews about this scope due to collimation problems and stray light issues, it appears as if Guan Sheng Optical has corrected a few of the problems associated with these truss tube telescopes and the next shipment of scopes should have these improvements. 1. The focuser is now decoupled from the primary mirror assembly.  2.  Improved baffle design.  3.  The focuser is now EAF compatible.  My plan is to put this on a permanent pier in a new ROR observatory later this year for DSO Astrophotography.  Paramount ME Mount. Agena Astro claims to do a full optical and mechanical inspection of these scopes before sending them out to customers, so I feel better about this.  Do any of you think I am making a mistake??  Should I be looking at a Planewave CDK14 instead??  I didn't really want to spend that much money, but I also don't want to spend my retirement fussing over a scope that just won't work.  What do you think??  Is it worth taking a chance?

#2 is the one I would want to get a proper read on.  If you haven't seen this video about the design issue I would suggest familiarizing yourself with it and then ask the vendor for specifications as this individual did a few years ago. 
https://www.youtube....h?v=nHuLrYe-oik

 

Might the GSO now be improved enough?  Perhaps.  

The reason people with money choose the CDK14 goes to quality of parts, quality of fitment of those parts, ease of alignment, and direct support.  Contact Planewave about installation help and you'll get a live person knowledgeable and ready to help.  If money isn't an object then the Planewave is the choice for the guy who does not want to be left trying to fix an issue because the guy assembling the GSO in China had a bad day.   Another thing, if you don't plan on installing and testing the telescope for a while, be aware of vendor and mfg support and warranty.  I've seen too many stories on CN where somone is building their dream setup and six months later they unbox the telescope or mount and find they no longer have the options they would have had because they went with the cheapest route. 
 


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#6 KevinDuch

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Posted 12 February 2024 - 10:19 PM

Not only the focuser is now decoupled but most importantly a vastly improved primary mirror cell design (version 3 or later).

I have zero issues with my RC12 and RC16.

Good to know!  Thanks so much for that information!



#7 Victory Pete

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Posted 13 February 2024 - 01:31 PM

I have been emailing Ioptron about these scopes and issues. 

 

Here is a response:

 

"I just got the confirmation from the factory that the stocking RCs have modified baffle tubes."

 

I also got a reply from Orion on their YouTube channel:

 

"Yes. A small initial batch had a baffle that was slightly too short but it was redesigned with the proper length and has been for quite some time now."

 

"The 12" Truss TC has a great focuser and has proven to be robust in our testing, the rear cell male threads (and the threads on the extension tubes) are 117mm diameter by 1mm thread pitch. With that said, we understand that every scenario is different and everyone has different needs for what they're looking to achieve."


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#8 Mike7Mak

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Posted 14 February 2024 - 12:15 PM

I've seen too many stories on CN where somone is building their dream setup and six months later they unbox the telescope or mount and find they no longer have the options they would have had because they went with the cheapest route. 
 

I did exactly that but so far think I lucked out. smile.gif

 

Purchased a GSO 14 truss from Agena at the same time I ordered a mount because the availability of the large GSO scopes was spotty at the time. The mount took 5 months to get and the scope sat in the box for the duration. I went into this 'eyes wide open' knowing that easy return would not be an option. Bit of a gamble that I willingly took.

 

The one thing you will probably want to change on the 14 is the Losmandy bar. The stock bar is ridiculously thin and contributes a lot of flexure to the scope mounting. I also replaced the stock focuser with an Optec TCF 3inch but that may be optional depending on the performance of the stock one with an EAF. The details of my experience so far with the new mount and scope are in this thread... https://www.cloudyni...2-avalon-m-tre/ ...the Losmandy bar issue is near the bottom of page 2 with pics.

 

Progress has been slow due to weather and other things but I've managed to get a couple pics with the rig (most recent 3 or 4 on Abin). Visually collimation is acceptable (for now) but I will be buying Skywave soon before I go twisting any screws. Aside from what I've detailed here I have no complaints about the scope. I like it. I considered a PlaneWave but my average conditions here simply couldn't justify the expense.
 


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#9 syxbach

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 12:10 PM

Mike

 

Congratulation on your new setup! Looks really nice

 

Yuexiao 

 

 

I did exactly that but so far think I lucked out. smile.gif

 

Purchased a GSO 14 truss from Agena at the same time I ordered a mount because the availability of the large GSO scopes was spotty at the time. The mount took 5 months to get and the scope sat in the box for the duration. I went into this 'eyes wide open' knowing that easy return would not be an option. Bit of a gamble that I willingly took.

 

The one thing you will probably want to change on the 14 is the Losmandy bar. The stock bar is ridiculously thin and contributes a lot of flexure to the scope mounting. I also replaced the stock focuser with an Optec TCF 3inch but that may be optional depending on the performance of the stock one with an EAF. The details of my experience so far with the new mount and scope are in this thread... https://www.cloudyni...2-avalon-m-tre/ ...the Losmandy bar issue is near the bottom of page 2 with pics.

 

Progress has been slow due to weather and other things but I've managed to get a couple pics with the rig (most recent 3 or 4 on Abin). Visually collimation is acceptable (for now) but I will be buying Skywave soon before I go twisting any screws. Aside from what I've detailed here I have no complaints about the scope. I like it. I considered a PlaneWave but my average conditions here simply couldn't justify the expense.
 


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#10 syxbach

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 12:24 PM

Personally, I think a new RC14 (any GSO brands or rebranded) will be more cost-effective than PW CDK14. With the price of CDK14, you can additionally buy a Nitecralwer and a complete setup of camera and expensive filters. More importantly, GSO-based RC optics is a better design than CDK. To be honest, I have not seen very good CDK14 images. They are not as sharp as I thought. However, those larger CDKs (>17) are very competitive. 

 

Yuexiao 



#11 rmollise

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 05:35 PM

I thought about trading in my C11 for an RC10 (or maybe RC14) but then I already think collimating the C11 is a PITA so the RC is just going to be even more. 

If you think collimating a C11 is a pain, for god's sake stay away from anybody's R-C. ;)


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#12 hyiger

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 06:01 PM

If you think collimating a C11 is a pain, for god's sake stay away from anybody's R-C. wink.gif

That's why I love my refactors. Of course they can go out of collimation but it's rare. 



#13 carolinaskies

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 06:36 PM

That's why I love my refactors. Of course they can go out of collimation but it's rare. 

Yeah, but if you take apart an SCT and take apart a triplet refractor including it's optical cell it's far easier to put the SCT back together since the mirrors only face one way... lol.   



#14 hyiger

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Posted 15 February 2024 - 06:46 PM

Yeah, but if you take apart an SCT and take apart a triplet refractor including it's optical cell it's far easier to put the SCT back together since the mirrors only face one way... lol.   

Yep the "humpty dumpty" triplet. 




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