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Thread: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

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    Default Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope



    The dovetail bar on my Orion Skyscanner came loose last year when I took it to Australia as a travel scope. So I decided to remove the bar altogether from the OTA and replace it with tube rings. One criticism about the Skyscanner is the location of the focuser on top of the tube, making it awkward to look through when using the tabletop mount. Here's the scope in Australia; note the focuser in a vertical position:



    Ordered 116 mm tube rings from Amazon on Saturday, arriving promptly on Sunday afternoon. I was pleasantly surprised with the speedy delivery.

    Got to work immediately – shown here is the OTA, tabletop mount, 116mm rings, dovetail bar and craft felt used to shim the inside of the focuser rings (the rings don’t quite fit the OTA):



    All it needed was one extra layer of black felt for a snug fit. Then I screwed the two rings onto the dovetail bar (formerly attached to the OTA) and attached the rings/bar combo to the tabletop mount, before finally putting the OTA into the rings:



    This scope is now back in operation, more versatile than before:



    I’ve taken off the dovetail bar from three other scopes and replaced them with tube rings – here is my earlier report:

    Beginner's scopes with EQ mounts - but without tube rings
    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: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Nicely done, Terry! Much more versatility that way. It has more attitude as well.
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    Bryan
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Very cool, per Frank Zappa, Necessity is the mothers of invention,
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Quote Originally Posted by bladekeeper View Post
    Nicely done, Terry! Much more versatility that way. It has more attitude as well.
    Thanks Bryan! Yup, it's more sophisticated looking now.

    This was my workhorse scope before the 4.5" Newts took over. It has a lot of sentimental value to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by dddinkdd View Post
    Very cool, per Frank Zappa, Necessity is the mothers of invention,
    Thanks! Both the Orion Skyscanner and The Mothers of Invention are cool...
    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: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Very nice Terry, I am sure the telescope will be much more user friendly now.
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    All scopes should have rings but its a cost issue I suppose, these are the only scope items that are relatively cheap here in RSA , between 10 and 15 US depending on size
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Quote Originally Posted by Gabby76 View Post
    Very nice Terry, I am sure the telescope will be much more user friendly now.
    Thanks Gabrielle. Looking forward to using it again, now that the tube is rotatable.

    Quote Originally Posted by 12richardk View Post
    All scopes should have rings but its a cost issue I suppose, these are the only scope items that are relatively cheap here in RSA , between 10 and 15 US depending on size
    Thanks Richard! The smallest tabletop scope with a rotatable tube is the Orion StarBlast 4.5.

    I'm thinking you meant between $100 and $150 U.S. The Skyscanner is a $100 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: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Looks good. I bet the extra weight of the rings aids stability as well. I tried to get rings for my 102mm Mak, but the rings need to match the actual OTA outer surface and I couldn't find any the right size.
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Quote Originally Posted by Shorty Barlow View Post
    I tried to get rings for my 102mm Mak, but the rings need to match the actual OTA outer surface and I couldn't find any the right size.
    Get oversized centering rings. They each have three screws 120 degrees apart that hold the OTA, much like the adjustment screws for a finder scope. I have two sets of centering rings (4" and 5.5") that will hold all my scopes from the 5" refractor down to a little 70mm refractor. You can mount practically any scope.

    ScopeStuff
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    Default Re: Tube Rings For a Small Tabletop Scope

    Quote Originally Posted by Ozman13 View Post
    Get oversized centering rings. They each have three screws 120 degrees apart that hold the OTA, much like the adjustment screws for a finder scope. I have two sets of centering rings (4" and 5.5") that will hold all my scopes from the 5" refractor down to a little 70mm refractor. You can mount practically any scope.

    ScopeStuff
    Good to know, thanks Oz!
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    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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