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Hi all, for my next upgrade on my Skywatcher Startravel 120mm refractor I'm thinking of upgrading the focuser to a dual speed 2" Crayford focuser http://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-focusers/sky-watcher-dual-speed-2-crayford-focuser-for-sky-watcher-refractors.html

A couple of questions though before I possibly fork out for one in the next month or so;

1) Does it need any other adapter ring or anything to fit OK into the existing place where the stock focuser sits on the ST120? It is just a straight swap right?

2) Does the two speed focuser action significantly improve the action to get a sharper focus much better and easier?

I currently have a Skywatcher Auto focuser fitted to the stock focuser on the scope, but find the constant small jabs back and forth you have to do on the keypad a little annoying to get good focus, and hope the finer focusing option on the Crayford focuser might be easier to achieve by hand again if fitted to the scope.

Regards,

Gus

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it sounds like its slipping from what you say, before buying new have you thought about adjusting it, or locking it with the brake ?

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3 minutes ago, faulksy said:

it sounds like its slipping from what you say, before buying new have you thought about adjusting it, or locking it with the brake ?

No, it stays in focus OK once focus is achieved. I did tighten the rack up a little when I fitted the focuser motor, and I lock of the focus when I do achieve it too. I just find it a little tricky to get sharp focus well without having to jab the buttons on the focuser a few times. 

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I have owned one of those SW Dual-speed focusers and must say they are one of the best value upgrades I have encountered. Very solidly built and a massive step up in quality from the standard focuser. The action is extremely smooth and the weight of the unit really helps with the overall balance of the scope. You will not need an adapter. The upgrade can be completed in about 2 minutes :smile:

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5 minutes ago, DRT said:

I have owned one of those SW Dual-speed focusers and must say they are one of the best value upgrades I have encountered. Very solidly built and a massive step up in quality from the standard focuser. The action is extremely smooth and the weight of the unit really helps with the overall balance of the scope. You will not need an adapter. The upgrade can be completed in about 2 minutes :smile:

Thanks for the feedback. Cheers! :) 

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I've recently owned one of the Skywatcher refractor crayford focusers as well and it was a pretty good focuser. I used it on a 150mm F/8 Skywatcher. The only thing you need to bear in mind is that it does not come with an integral finder shoe like the stock focuser has.

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2 minutes ago, John said:

I've recently owned one of the Skywatcher refractor crayford focusers as well and it was a pretty good focuser. I used it on a 150mm F/8 Skywatcher. The only thing you need to bear in mind is that it does not come with an integral finder shoe like the stock focuser has.

Thanks John. I know I'll need to do a little DIY to my scope to refit the finder scope. Just need to have a steady hand when I drill some holes to fit a new synta shoe. :) 

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23 hours ago, Knighty2112 said:

Thanks John. I know I'll need to do a little DIY to my scope to refit the finder scope. Just need to have a steady hand when I drill some holes to fit a new synta shoe. :) 

Or just buy a Rigel or a Telrad :wink:

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I use the GSO 10:1 dual-speed Crayford. These are about the same animal. And the focusing is excellent indeed. Night & day difference from the single-speed variety. You'll be a happy camper.

Upgrade away -

Dave

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@Knighty2112 Hi to you, I was directed here by my friend Kim, I have just posted the very same question after using my ST 120mm and struggling with the stock focuser. Did you get one and if so does it improve massively over the stock one supplied?

                                              Dave:

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11 hours ago, Dave In Vermont said:

I use the GSO 10:1 dual-speed Crayford. These are about the same animal. And the focusing is excellent indeed. Night & day difference from the single-speed variety. You'll be a happy camper.

Upgrade away -

Dave

Thanks Dave. Just got to save up the money now! :)

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2 hours ago, menacegtr said:

@Knighty2112 Hi to you, I was directed here by my friend Kim, I have just posted the very same question after using my ST 120mm and struggling with the stock focuser. Did you get one and if so does it improve massively over the stock one supplied?

                                              Dave:

Hi Dave. Not got one yet. I'm hoping if funds allow after I get paid to get it at the end of this month. If not it will be in May when I get it. All people who have responded have great things to say over it, so it should be a great upgrade to the scope & make focusing much smoother & easier. :)

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15 hours ago, DRT said:

Or just buy a Rigel or a Telrad :wink:

HI DRT. Ive heard people rave about the Telrad, but to be honest i prefer a little magnifiction when I use my finderscope, so most likely will never use a Telrad or Orion.

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Ok thanks for that, I was hoping you had it already. I think I will order one Monday 21/3/  As you said everyone is raving about them. I will post some pics and do a short review after I have used it. Cant wait to junk the supplied one, its just plain horrible.

                                                         Dave:

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I also put a larger diameter focus-wheel on my ST80 after replacing the focuser with the 10:1 Crayford. This adds an other layer of fine-tuning the focused image to crystal clarity.

You might say I like my little ST80.

Dave

56ec618daf88e_FineFocusKnobbyScopeStuff.

Edited by Dave In Vermont
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20160324_132247.jpg.63c82ebc79c343eb7f44

Finally got my Dual speed 2" Crayford focuser for my Startravel 120. I must say it is a huge improvement over the standard focuser, I can make very tinny  increments to get very fine focus, and the barrel does not move up and down while looking in the eyepiece while focusing. Its a very heavy sturdy upgrade that hopefully will make a huge performance increase when viewing the night sky. A word of caution though, I had to wet and dry the inside of the adapter the white piece that comes with the scope to get it to fit, it is a very tight fit but a fine piece of wet and dry made getting the new Crayford to fit onto the adapter. Also my 2" diagonal works but when I try a Barlow I cannot get focus, not enough inward travel. If you use the standard diagonal that comes with the scope there is no problem. Why is that, its a shame that I cannot use this new focuser with my 2" dielectric diagonal with a Barlow. I will have to try a 4mm eyepiece at 150x mag to try and eradicate using a Barlow at all. As I said I can use all of my eye pieces with the new Crayford without problem but no good with a Barlow unless I revert back to the standard SkyWatcher 90 Degree Star Diagonal 1.25" and the 45 erecting prism. I have outlaid money into a Skywatcher 2" Di-Electric Star Diagonal and the Skywatcher 45° Erecting Prism 2",that I cannot use with my new Crayford, but as I said the 2" Di-Electric Star Diagonal works okay with out resorting to a Barlow. Its just a shame but there you go. Please anyone wanting this for a ST 120 be aware of what I have said. Fortunately I can afford this short coming so I am not totally gutted, I can put these items away and use another time. So to end this the new Dual speed 2" Crayford focuser is going to be probably the best investment I have made. and while using the standard supplied SkyWatcher 90 Degree Star Diagonal 1.25" and the 45 erecting prism you will have no problems at all. I am very happy with it. I hope this helps others

                                                                                 Regards. Dave:

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Edited by menacegtr

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Looks nice. A little worried about the Barlow. I have a Celestron Omni 2x Barlow, and it would be a shame not to be able to use it with my 2" dielectric diagonal. Not a deal breaker, but something to consider at least. Thanks for the feed back.

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Yes it is a shame but like you said not a deal breaker. Don't forget I am using a Revelation Astro 2.5x Barlow Lens 1.25", not sure if a 2x would be better?. The smoothness of the dial is just so precise you will not be disappointed, the smaller dial is just fantastic, ultra minute adjustments. I don't no what the deal with these 2" Di-Electric Star Diagonals not getting focus it beats me. I hope if I get a real good Skywatcher 90 Diagonal 1.25" with a compression fitting I will keep focus. I don't want to use the standard diagonal as I don't want to mare my X-CEL LX eyepieces up. maybe its not a case of using a Barlow as long as you can push the scope not quite to its limits. This scope has about 240x or so at best, so I am hoping if I can stretch to a 4mm at 150x mag I would not need a Barlow. Just remember knighty 2112 if you stick with a decent 1.25" diagonal (dielectric) a Barlow will be fine. I will make some enquires unless someone here can advise. All I will say about the Crayford is its an exceptional bit of kit, I am glad I finally got one, wont be using the supplied one again that's for sure

                                  Dave:

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Thanks for the info on this focuser. I've been thinking about upgrading and now I think I'll go for it. 

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Sadly, an emergency has cropped up so will have to hold off getting my new focuser until May now! :(

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20160326_104501.jpg20160326_104445.jpg

These are the exact settings I left the focuser on last night 25/3/ while viewing the moon real close up with my SkyWatcher 5mm UWA Planetary Eyepiece, without a Barlow. As you can see there is a little headroom for a closer view lets say with a 4mm

                                          Dave:

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Dave, is the focuser longer than the stock focuser fitted? Looking at it it doesn't seem longer, but might be a little hard to know for sure unless measured? 

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I have tried to line up the 2 focusers up exactly, you can see that the new Crayford is defiantly longer, that's why it wont Barlow with the 2" diagonal. I tried the Barlow with the supplied SkyWatcher 90 Degree Star Diagonal 1.25" and the 45 erecting prism And I have no problem with focus. Before i put the adapter flange on the scope I tried carefully inserting the Crayford into the tube further then it would allow with the flange and you can get all the focus you want but you would have to take a bit of the back (not an impossible job to undertake) to get the focuser further in. But like I said I can achieve all the magnification I wont without using a Barlow. I have very good Celestron X-CEL LX eyepiece's so my scope will thank me for that, and without using a Barlow I think the view is clearer and brighter.

                                                 Dave

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I would say there is about 3 quarters of an inch difference at the back of both focusers, the Crayford being said distance longer minus the eyepiece adapters

                                                   Dave:

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Thanks Dave. I gues at a push if one wanted too then trimming an inch off the actual tube of the scope would overcome this if required. I'll see if my Omni 2x Barlow when attached into my 2" dielectric diagonal suffers the same issue when I get my focuser. I may just be able to squeeze it in this month after all, but need to do the number crunching still before I know for sure.  Thanks for the pics. :) 

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