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Thread: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

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    Default Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac



    Didn’t have anything better to do Sunday afternoon, so I decided to set up a telescope that I acquired last May but never assembled until now, the Bushnell Sky Chief II:

    IMG_4991.JPG IMG_4990.JPG

    This is a 60mm F/15 refractor with EQ mount - I'm guessing it dates from the 1970s. This was a focal ratio/length that was missing from my 60mm collection. My friend Tim got it at the RTMC Star Party we were at last year and he immediately passed it on to me for $20. It came with a Ramsden 20mm, Modified Huygens 12.5 and Modified Huygens 6 mm eyepiece (strange, in that usually the Ramsden is the smallest focal length supplied EP). Other accessories include a terrestrial viewer, a solar projection screen, a 2x Barlow lens, and a sun filter.

    The label has the Diamond BOL logo on it, while the maker’s mark on the objective lens cell says Vixen – not sure if this is the original doublet objective that came with this scope:

    IMG_4992.JPG

    I tried to get the dew cap unscrewed off the objective end but no success, which was the main reason I had it lying around for so long. For some strange reason, I wanted to disassemble and inspect the objective lenses before testing it under the night sky. Gave up on this. There was a baffle inside the tube that was loose, so I pulled it out.

    Movement on the R.A. and Dec axes is very smooth:

    IMG_4997.JPG

    Took a few daytime peeks through the supplied 20mm and 12.5mm EPs at faraway telephone polls and crows. Narrow FOV through the Ramsden 20mm as expected; wider FOV through the Huygens 12.5mm, but very tight eye-relief.

    Back focus on this scope is extremely long, so I could get a close-up view of the crow perched on top of the next-door apartment building roof. Cool.

    IMG_4998.JPG

    It comes with a 6x30 finder scope which I can't get to focus sharply.

    The next time I have it out will hopefully be under a starry night. Need to try my Kellner 0.965” EPs as well as my 0.965” to 1.25” star diagonal and/or 0.965" to 1.25" eyepiece adapter on this scope.
    Terry
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Scopes: Celestron Powerseeker 114EQ, Meade Polaris 114EQ, Orion Starblast 4.5EQ, Orion Short Tube 80A, and a whole bunch of others that get very little or no usage.

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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Man, that is one handsome looking scope, Terry! That ought to be a whiz-bang on some doubles stars, and the Moon should be amazing. Jupiter too, though small.

    It will be fun to read an observing report with this scope being featured.

    Thanks for the great pics!
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Quote Originally Posted by bladekeeper View Post
    Man, that is one handsome looking scope, Terry! That ought to be a whiz-bang on some doubles stars, and the Moon should be amazing. Jupiter too, though small.

    It will be fun to read an observing report with this scope being featured.

    Thanks for the great pics!
    Thanks Bryan! I especially like the looks and smooth movements on the EQ mount. This is the first 60mm scope with EQ mount that I've owned, besides being my first F/15.

    I'm curious how the views of the planets might differ between a 60mm F/11.7 (700mm FL), a 60mm F/13.3 (800mm FL), and a 60mm F/15.2 scope (910mm FL), when using the same magnification on all three. Fortunately I've got examples of all three types from which to test...
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Thanks for this Terry. A great pick-up for $20! It looks terrific, and almost pristine: like it has almost never been used.

    I will be interested to hear if there is any difference on the planet comparisons. Probably a bit less CA as you move up the focal lengths, but it might be hard to pick!

    Have fun!

    All the best,

    Dean
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Terry.
    Nice looking scope.
    Looking forward to your first viewing report.
    I do like seeing wooden tripods on older scopes.
    Clear skies.
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Nice reporting, Terry...and great acquisition at that price! Except for the wear on the tripod legs, looks "unused"! Should provide some great views.

    By the way, if you are interested, here is a link to one of the later (1986) Unitron eyepiece price list's showing the available .965" EP's: EP Selection – Unitron History Project. It represents the .965" EP's that were available in 1952.

    Dave
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    Can't beat it! Good find.
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    That is going to give you great views, Terry. I have the same scope. :-)
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    A beautiful looking refractor and mount Terry, I am looking forward to your reports using it.
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    Default Re: Brief report on the Bushnell Sky Chief II - 60mm F/15 'frac

    These are great scopes. Yours appears to be in amazing shape, even the inspection stickers are like new. $20 is a jaw-dropping price for such an instrument.

    By all means, try a 1.25" diagonal on it.
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