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Calling all Celestron C8 owners


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I'm attempting to date my Celestron C8 and have been drawing up a list of serial numbers and manufacturing years off the internet. I've read that Celestron can't help and the serial numbers themselves don't translate to much, but I was hoping that if I can collect enough serial numbers, I can find the one closest to mine to get a rough year of manufacture. Currently, I have the numbers below.

I would greatly appreciate it if you could spend a minute adding your serial number and year of manufacture to this thread, particularly if it's close to mine, then I will collate them all into a table. The serial number typically appears to be on the front of the secondary, perhaps under the removable cap if it has one. Many thanks in advance.

Serial year

4936 1973

176337 1977

219214 1975

339705 1975

804081 1977

808735 1979

811938 1981

815888 1982

928774 ? - mine

Edited by sgazer
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Mine's a white one! :headbang: Well it's been repainted, I believe it was orange before, hence it's either pre-1980 or post 2006 according to this link, if it's accurate.

Celestron - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

it has a smooth back, not the ribbed one show in the pic in the link.

It has the knob on the dust cover, with the detachable plastic centre bit (I have no idea why it detaches).

Following the serial numbers, it would appear to be more likely post 2006, but then it would seem strange to have repainted if it was less than 3-4 years old. Also, the corrector seems completely clear ie. no visible coatings. I think the info in the Wiki link may not be accurate regarding the post 2006 orange colour.

Edited by sgazer
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I tried to do that with my C8 when I had it. I was advised that Celestron don't keep records of the serial numbers as well, which was not much help !. Rod Mollise's guide to buying an SCT might be of interest if you have not already seen it (free download):

Home Page

Edited by John
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If it was orange and it has Celestron C8 written on the dust cover and the knob its pre 1980....HTH

Alan

PS the old orange ones were made in Irving California and are way better than the newer models...

Edited by moocher
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It has 'Celestron C8' written on the secondary holder, near the adjustment screws, I think that's what you mean.

The main corrector corrector lens cover has the knob in the middle with the plastic bit that unclips, but no writing on it.

Edited by sgazer
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  • 1 year later...

This thread intrigued me one evening last May (2010), and I spent several evenings going through ads on a certain astronomy equipment site in the US, looking for C8 optical tube ads with photos that showed the serial number clearly on the front corrector (or for old orange tubes, on plate on the side of the fork mount base), and which gave information on the date the person had bought the scope, either new or used. Then using inference, and quite a bit of collected data from that site's ad photos, plus your several serial number data points in your table below, here is what I came up with.

Serial year

==========

004936 1973

176337 1977

219214 1975

339705 1975

800732 1975 - 1977 (C8 classic orangetube)

804081 1977

805507 1980 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

805630 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

806633 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

808735 1979 or later

810231 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

811294 (C8 classic orangetube)

811938 1981

815888 1982

822085 1983 - 1984 (est ?) (C8 classic orange tube)

825682 at least 1984 (C8 blacktube Starbright…at least 1984 since that's when Starbright came out)

827259 at least 1984 (C8 classic orangetube)

- (Celestron Super C8 on Vixen Superpolaris GEM was first sold in 1984)

- (Haley's Comet came in 1986…Celestron quality supposedly really dipped during Haley's comet craze from 1985 - 1987, until Alan Hale was brought back to turn Celestron quality around in 1988)

845210 1987 (C8 blacktube Starbright coatings)

847300 at least 1988 (SPC8 blacktube Starbright…ad claimed OTA was hand-selected by Alan Hale for ad photos)

- (had to be in or after 1988 since 1988 is when Celestron brought Alan Hale back to restore quality and company reputation)

850745 ???? (C8 classic with Starbright coatings…good optics)

858639 ???? (GP-C8) (older than 1991, newer than 1987)

877563 ???? (C8 blacktube no coatings) (immediately sold after buying, possibly bad optics (claimed "may need collimation"))

889700 1991 (Celestron Ultima C8 SCT blacktube)

927520 2000 (C8 Fastar Starbright blacktube)

928504 2001 (C8 Nexstar 8 goldtube)

928774 ? (had to be 2001 or later, using S/N 928504 with firm new-scope purchase date above)

934042 2005 (C8 goldtube Starbright non-XLT)

935835 2004 (C8 blacktube C8-S goto Starbright non-XLT)

S12078 2009 (C8 Starbright XLT blacktube)

S12561 (C8 Nexstar 8SE blacktube Starbright XLT)

S14029 (CPC800 XLT)

S16480 2008 (C8 XLT blacktube)

S19669 2009 (C8 XLT blacktube)

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  • 8 months later...

Good morning Astronomers,

first I want to apologize to "dig out" such an old thread as my first post in this forum.

(To briefly introduce myself, I'm Raphael, a physics student from Italy).

Thank you Tom for that great list! I recently found a Celestron group on yahoo that also collected serial numbers and tried to figure out production dates basing on these numbers.

I mirrored Roy's yahoo-list on my dropbox http://dl.dropbox.com/u/9718909/Celestron_C8_Serial_Numbers_Sorted.doc as its a great extension of Tom's work.

It seems that, when Celestron Pacific became Celestron International, they just started numbering sequentially all C8s, putting "8" as first digit.

Unfortunately, my C8 doesn't fit to the model of "sequential" numbering for all

Celestron International scopes. But maybe we can figure out this mystery together :icon_salut:.

Its an orange C8 with a dovetail-clamp attached (thus probably designed to be

mounted on a Vixen SP with dovetail-bar attached) and labeled "Starbright

coating". Vixen SP-compatible means younger than 1984 (see Tom's list), and also

"Starbright coating" came out in 1984. As its still orange and not yet black

(1987), basing on this information, I'd expect a production date in the

mid-1980s. But, serial numbers from the mid-1980s seem to go from 82???? to

85????.

Mine is "87 02 93" - and thus fits to the Vixen GP-age C8s with black tube.

Quite wired, huh?

Do you have any idea whether Celestronproduced black and orange tubes simultaneously for a while ?

Have a great Sunday,

Raphael

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For those who don't know, to read the list below position your cursor over the first word, then left click, and keeping the button depressed, drag downward. The words then become readable.

This thread intrigued me one evening last May (2010), and I spent several evenings going through ads on a certain astronomy equipment site in the US, looking for C8 optical tube ads with photos that showed the serial number clearly on the front corrector (or for old orange tubes, on plate on the side of the fork mount base), and which gave information on the date the person had bought the scope, either new or used. Then using inference, and quite a bit of collected data from that site's ad photos, plus your several serial number data points in your table below, here is what I came up with.

Serial year

==========

004936 1973

176337 1977

219214 1975

339705 1975

800732 1975 - 1977 (C8 classic orangetube)

804081 1977

805507 1980 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

805630 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

806633 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

808735 1979 or later

810231 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

811294 (C8 classic orangetube)

811938 1981

815888 1982

822085 1983 - 1984 (est ?) (C8 classic orange tube)

825682 at least 1984 (C8 blacktube Starbright…at least 1984 since that's when Starbright came out)

827259 at least 1984 (C8 classic orangetube)

- (Celestron Super C8 on Vixen Superpolaris GEM was first sold in 1984)

- (Haley's Comet came in 1986…Celestron quality supposedly really dipped during Haley's comet craze from 1985 - 1987, until Alan Hale was brought back to turn Celestron quality around in 1988)

845210 1987 (C8 blacktube Starbright coatings)

847300 at least 1988 (SPC8 blacktube Starbright…ad claimed OTA was hand-selected by Alan Hale for ad photos)

- (had to be in or after 1988 since 1988 is when Celestron brought Alan Hale back to restore quality and company reputation)

850745 ???? (C8 classic with Starbright coatings…good optics)

858639 ???? (GP-C8) (older than 1991, newer than 1987)

877563 ???? (C8 blacktube no coatings) (immediately sold after buying, possibly bad optics (claimed "may need collimation"))

889700 1991 (Celestron Ultima C8 SCT blacktube)

927520 2000 (C8 Fastar Starbright blacktube)

928504 2001 (C8 Nexstar 8 goldtube)

928774 ? (had to be 2001 or later, using S/N 928504 with firm new-scope purchase date above)

934042 2005 (C8 goldtube Starbright non-XLT)

935835 2004 (C8 blacktube C8-S goto Starbright non-XLT)

S12078 2009 (C8 Starbright XLT blacktube)

S12561 (C8 Nexstar 8SE blacktube Starbright XLT)

S14029 (CPC800 XLT)

S16480 2008 (C8 XLT blacktube)

S19669 2009 (C8 XLT blacktube)

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My Celestar 8 Deluxe; black tube Fastar capable, is numbered 914611. I have a feeling I found this was made around '97, but as I bought it secondhand, I can't be sure about that. Another place that might be worth looking, or enquiring, is the Classic section of C/N. As stated above, Uncle Rod is the 'man' on these things. I've added my number below, and clarified the list.

Cheers

Max

This thread intrigued me one evening last May (2010), and I spent several evenings going through ads on a certain astronomy equipment site in the US, looking for C8 optical tube ads with photos that showed the serial number clearly on the front corrector (or for old orange tubes, on plate on the side of the fork mount base), and which gave information on the date the person had bought the scope, either new or used. Then using inference, and quite a bit of collected data from that site's ad photos, plus your several serial number data points in your table below, here is what I came up with.

Serial year

==========

004936 1973

176337 1977

219214 1975

339705 1975

800732 1975 - 1977 (C8 classic orangetube)

804081 1977

805507 1980 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

805630 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

806633 1980 or later (C8 classic orangetube)

808735 1979 or later

810231 (C8 classic orangetube special coatings)

811294 (C8 classic orangetube)

811938 1981

815888 1982

822085 1983 - 1984 (est ?) (C8 classic orange tube)

825682 at least 1984 (C8 blacktube Starbright…at least 1984 since that's when Starbright came out)

827259 at least 1984 (C8 classic orangetube)

- (Celestron Super C8 on Vixen Superpolaris GEM was first sold in 1984)

- (Haley's Comet came in 1986…Celestron quality supposedly really dipped during Haley's comet craze from 1985 - 1987, until Alan Hale was brought back to turn Celestron quality around in 1988)

845210 1987 (C8 blacktube Starbright coatings)

847300 at least 1988 (SPC8 blacktube Starbright…ad claimed OTA was hand-selected by Alan Hale for ad photos)

- (had to be in or after 1988 since 1988 is when Celestron brought Alan Hale back to restore quality and company reputation)

850745 ???? (C8 classic with Starbright coatings…good optics)

858639 ???? (GP-C8) (older than 1991, newer than 1987)

877563 ???? (C8 blacktube no coatings) (immediately sold after buying, possibly bad optics (claimed "may need collimation"))

889700 1991 (Celestron Ultima C8 SCT blacktube)

914611 ???? (Celestron 8 Deluxe black tube possibly 97)

927520 2000 (C8 Fastar Starbright blacktube)

928504 2001 (C8 Nexstar 8 goldtube)

928774 ? (had to be 2001 or later, using S/N 928504 with firm new-scope purchase date above)

934042 2005 (C8 goldtube Starbright non-XLT)

935835 2004 (C8 blacktube C8-S goto Starbright non-XLT)

S12078 2009 (C8 Starbright XLT blacktube)

S12561 (C8 Nexstar 8SE blacktube Starbright XLT)

S14029 (CPC800 XLT)

S16480 2008 (C8 XLT blacktube)

S19669 2009 (C8 XLT blacktube)

Edited by EssexMigrant
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  • 3 months later...

In case you are still tracking C8 serial numbers

Just bought a C8, orange tube from original owner.

Purchased, 1980, plus or minus one year. Direct purchase from the factory showroom in California.

Serial number 800685

John

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  • 4 months later...
  • 1 month later...

I dated my old C8, roughly, using old Celestron brochures, Uncle Rods guide and some old Astro magazines. The ones folks worry about are the "Halleyscopes", ie: the ones sold in advance of the return of Halley's Comet in 1986. It seems to be well know that Meade and Celestron "relaxed" their quality checking during that period to meet the demand !

Mine turned out to be a 1994 model I recall. It had excellent optics but had developed a bit of "mirror flop" which was annoying.

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The ones folks worry about are the "Halleyscopes", ie: the ones sold in advance of the return of Halley's Comet in 1986

I.ve heard similar rumours regarding Hale Bop's appearance

Edited by Alan_B
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  • 4 months later...

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