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Pics of my freebie telescope

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Hi... I thought that I would post pics of the telescope that I have recently aquired. It is a 6 inch reflector, which has stood unused for many years. It has screw in type mech and threaded eye piece/barlow lens.

The telescope was being thrown out from the science department of the school where I work. As I have been hanging my nose over a telescope for a while I thought that I would rescue it from the scrap pile.

So far I have knocked the surface dust from the outside of the tube and have cleanded up the mech of the mount.

Please excuse the vice in the pic, there was no tripod with it, so one of the first jobs will be to fabricate some sort of pedestal. The main mirror is filthy and collimation is way out, so they will also be high priority jobs.






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The mount was made by Franks of Glasgow and possibly the scope though I'm not sure about that.

I have a mount and tripod in the shed with a 4" which I have had for over thirty years and back then it was second hand.

You may possibly need to change the focuser if it is the same as the one on my scope as it will only take 0.965" and I may be wrong but I think they are quite difficult to get..?

I am quite envious though as you have the worm gears and setting circles and sadly mine were always missing.. (so should you ever want to sell :))

But yeah I reckon if you can get it all sorted you'll have quite a nice scope there...:)

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Oh Yes, a definite Charles Frank mount there, with posh slow mos and setting circles. Again Im not so sure about the scope but that RAS threaded helical focuser is identical to one I had on a home built 6" newt back in the 70s. I cant be sure but the focuser may be Irving, dont quote me on that cos there was no name mine. You could swap it for a low profile Rack & Pinion 1 1/4" quite easily, saves messing with RAS to 1 1/4" ep adaptors which I suspect you wouldnt get focus on as they put a bit more distance between mirror and eyepiece.

When you have got it up and running you will have to bring it up to the EMS dark site sometime and Ill bring my 1964 Swift, we could have a vintage scope rally:)

Nice find


A nice short pier would work well with that mount and scope

Edited by philj
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A "snap" on the Charles Frank Barlow and eyepiece - mine are 2x barlow and 1" and 1/4" focal length Ramsden eyepieces. The helical mount is by Frank as well ( I have one too but can't find it!). All threads are 1 1/4" RAS (16tpi). Mine originate from my home built 6" f/8 reflector c1970.


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Hello and thanks for the feedback. Plan is to get the mirror clean and get the scope collimated. Then I will see how it performs as it is... As I am new to this star gazing lark the first target will be the moon.

If all is OK then I plan to get a pedestal fabricated, maybe then look at options with the focusser and perhaps even replace the tube, which has been damaged and repaired with a aluminium plate.

Plus it is nice to have an idea about the origin of the mount and I plan to look out for Franks book on telescopes.

Edited by Darth_Vader
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Looks servicable. Also it all looks quite good quality, love the aluminium ep's and barlow. What a bargain, I bet they'll be gutted when you've collimated and cleaned it and show that "one mans rubbish is another mans treasure".

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Wow nice one, I start my pgce in September will have to go rooting around all the schools I get to work in. You never know the might be a gem with my name on it. Please post pics when you restore.

Clear skies

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  • 3 months later...

Haven't done much to this scope in the four months I've had it. But have finally cleaned the primary mirror and performed an alignment with the aid of a hole drilled in a 35mm film case.

Finally got outside with it last night to see how it performs. With no pedestal I bolted my mount onto my black and Decker workmate, pointed the scope at Polaris (kind of) then went in search of Jupiter... AND WOW!

I have never seen the Galilean moons before and with the Barlow lens in place I could clearly see dark and light lines on the disk of Jupiter! I am well chuffed!

Now I know the scope is functioning OK I will get my finger pulled out and get a pedestal fabricated as it was all a bit wobbly last night

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Excellent scope , please keep us updated on the restoration.

Astroboot probably have the part you need (on an EQ1 mount) though it may need minor modification . http://www.scopesnskies.com/AstroBoot

You need to be aiming at before the end of the month to get some cracking views of Jupiter (closest it will be for a while)


Edited by Polar Bear
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  • 1 month later...

Also new pedestal mount has been fabricated...

I have tried the scope a couple of times using an old rickety workbench to support the mount.

Now I have a bespoke pedestal fabricated from materials in the scrap bin!

So far the expenditure on this scope has been £2.55!!!



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OMG! Nice work on the mirror...... :D Many a mirror in better shape would have been binned! How did you manage to clean it so well, or has it been recoated?


I cleaned the mirror after reading the "Andy shot glass" guide... There is a link on here somewhere!

Basically I soaked the mirror in a bowl with the tiniest amount of detergent added. I then rinsed the mirror with HOT water and repeated this several times until all the debris had been rinsed away.

I then soaked the mirror in the bowl again and used cotton wool to clean. I did this by drawing the cotton wool from the centre of the mirror to the outside edge WITHOUT putting any pressure on the mirror other than the weight of the cotton wool.

When finished I rinsed the mirror with HOT water again so that there were hardly any droplet left on the surface. Any drops present were "wicked" off using the corner of some kitchen towl!

I did plan to rinse further with surgical spirit, but when I inspected the mirror closely I couldn't detect any sort of streaking, so decided not to push my luck!

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