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Has anyone "out there" ever de-forked a Meade ETX105?


MoonNut
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Has anyone ever de-forked a Meade ETX105?

Peed off with the mount and thinking of fitting it to an adaptor plate with a C80GT (as the guide scope) on my EQ mount and using it for imaging with my SPC900NC web cam.

Just need to know if there are any problems to look out for.

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I've done it with an ETX125. Its a bit of a pain as the tube sort of clicks in to the plastic arms, so if I remember rightly you have to pull straight back quite sharply. But its easier getting it off than trying to put it back in!!

I'm with you though, great scopes, lousy mount!

Helen

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Helen, the mounts are OK but not if you actually want to look through the eyepeice at high angles :o

Psychobilly, I don't think I will be refitting it to the mount, so if you know anyone that need a 497 handset please let me know! Thanks for the link, I have done several mods to the ETX inspired by posts on Mikes site. Flexi focuser, lens cap handle, serial port cable etc. I have posted on Astro Chat but the pics have expired.... so here it is:

I thought I would share with you the mods I have done on my ETX 105, because it is cold, grey and wet here in Bahrain and I can not do any observing at the moment sad7.gif

I purchased the scope way back in 2002, I have used it in many different location around the world and over the last couple of years I have carried out these mods and I think you will agree that what I have done, though simple enough, has enhanced the scope tremendously.

The first thing was the handle on the lens cap, any ETX owner will tell you how fiddly it is to fit or remove, especially in the dark with frozen fingers.

The simple solution is this bog standard furniture handle, painted red to look cool.

aV1p8vDS.jpg

Then I found the finder to be too close to the main eyepiece (I kept bashing it with my head when using high power i.e.smaller eyepeices causing vibration, so I cut it off! Then using a strong adhesive stuck it to the main tube a bit further up. Worked a treat! (why didn't Meade do this?)

aV1p8X4r.jpg

The next project was a flexible focuser, I used a section of speedometer cable from a car, the bit in the middle that turns, you should be able to get a piece for nothing at your local "scrappy". It has virtually no torsive "give" but it is very flexible.

I attached it with a section of electrical chocolate block (the ugliest part of the mod, still need to fine tune this bit ) and the original cap on the other end.

I covered it in red shrink tube to match the handle, if you know anybody in the aviation industry ask them for a strip, alternatively buy a pack from Radio Shack.

aV1pdHoA.jpg

Next I found a black telephone cable at the one Dinar shop (the same as Pound Land) that I attached a standard 9 pin serial plug to link the ETX handset to an old laptop, using the planetarium program C2A by Phillippe Deverchere, which has inbuilt telescope control with a very good on-screen control panel, it is possible to control the ETX via the laptop and have the position of the telescope FOV on the planetarium, there is a night vision feature so it will not effect your night vision. I also use a small program called Dark Adapted by Stephen E Hutson to "tone down" the screen.

aV1pfw89.jpg

Finally, I purchased a tripod for about $30 and adapted it for the EXT using a surplus mounting bracket for an aircraft satcom controller. It works very well.

aV1pgMXJ.jpg

All of these mods are other peoples ideas, I make no claim to any of them. I copied them from the excellent Mike Weasners Mighty ETX Site Weasner's Mighty ETX Site a must for any self respecting ETX owner. If anybody would like more details on any of the above, please ask, I will be more than happy to help.

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Those mods look neat! The bit that really got me was the heavyweight metal lens cap but plastic gears :o. My mount was always unpredictable and sloppy - despite having tried many Weasner mods!

It now works great on a phoo tripod for grab and go though :)

Helen

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  • 2 months later...

This YouTube video -

- deals with the ETX105 - only thing to watch out for that I am aware of is and that is the brass retaining thread studs on the shoe on the plastic mirror cell can become loose - mine did and I when I fitted a dovetatil bar. Edited by Philip R
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