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Celestron Premium 80

Discussion in 'Vintage Telescopes & Equipment' started by bladekeeper, Nov 4, 2017.

Celestron Premium 80

Started by bladekeeper on Nov 4, 2017 at 3:44 PM

11 Replies 1827 Views 3 Likes

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  1. bladekeeper

    bladekeeper Active Member

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    I often browse the local Craigslist telescope ads. Last Saturday, a new add appeared that I found intriguing, a Celestron Premium 80 on a wood tripod. I asked a couple of forum friends about it, and Gabrielle and Chris both indicated it was a great scope, and for the asking price of $75.00 US, a great buy.

    I brought it up to my wife, Shelley, and of course, she, being concerned for my well-being, was at first a bit reticent about the purchase. She finally decided it was a good buy too and encouraged me to contact the seller. The seller and I exchanged a few text messages. He had to do some shopping but would let me know later when I could swing by and check out the scope. Good enough.

    Meanwhile, since the sky was nice and clear and it was International Observe the Moon Night, I decided to set up the two 5” refractors on the Twilight II mount in my driveway in hopes that I could share some lunar views with neighbors that might be passing by.

    After setting up, I pulled together the evening meal for my wife and me.

    A bit later, I suited up and head out to the scopes. It wasn’t even dark yet, but the Moon was quite prominent and it good position to point the scopes at.

    Unfortunately, the neighborhood was a ghost town. No signs of life anywhere. This is fairly typical when I put scopes in the driveway. And, it was rather cold out too, so that was a contributing factor. I waited a while and watched the Moon myself for a bit. But, unfortunately, no one showed.

    Along about 1845 hrs., the scope seller sent another text message indicating I could swing by now if I was still interested in the 80mm. You bet I was!

    I quickly moved the scopes back into my backyard to my usual scope spot. I told my wife I was going to look at the scope.

    The seller lived about 15 minutes from my house. I plugged his address into my car’s nav system and headed out.

    It was rather dark at this point and I had a little trouble seeing house numbers in this rather affluent neighborhood. I finally spotted what I thought was the correct house, and this was confirmed when I spotted the scope set up on the front walk. I pulled into the driveway.

    There was a nice white Mercedes sitting in the garage. Oh boy.

    I’d brought along a decent 1.25” diagonal and my 20mm and 9mm Orion Expanse eyepieces so that I could evaluate the scope with some familiar gear. I also brought a small but bright LED flashlight.

    The seller, Dave by name, came out and we made our introductions. He told me he was not a scope user and had acquired the instrument via a storage auction. He and his wife had stored the scope and mount in their garage for quite some time.

    I shined my flashlight all over the scope and gave it a good looking over. Some minor scratches on the OTA and a few on the tripod legs, some paint chips on the end of the metal dew shield. The objective lens was a bit dusty and had a film on it, but I did not see any scratches.

    It had a 45° prism diagonal in the 1.25” focuser, and in that was an old Celestron “Halloween” 23mm Plössl eyepiece. Dave had it pointed at the Moon already.

    I had a quick peek and the view was promising. I swapped out the diagonal for my 90° and put in my 9mm eyepiece. Centering on the Moon, the view was excellent and sharp, and minimal to no CA was present. I bid Dave have a peek as well, and he said, “Wow! That’s much better!”

    I swung the scope around to the west and finally got it centered on Mirach. I was hoping to hop up to M31, but the little 6×30 finder was missing its eyepiece end, and Dave was starting to hop around from the cold air.

    He was wearing hospital scrubs. I’m assuming that since he was thus attired, and the nice car in the garage of the very nice house, that he was a doctor.

    Anyway, I didn’t want to make him stand around while I tried to find the galaxy. I finally said, “Well, it’s a decent little scope. It has a few scratches and needs a good cleaning. Would you take $50.00 for it?”

    He didn’t even hesitate. “Yeah, I’ll take fifty for it.”

    I fished out my folding money and handed over two twenties and a ten. We shook hands and I loaded the scope into my car.

    Back at home, I carried the scope right out to the scope spot in my backyard next to the two 127’s.

    I sat out in the yard for another 45 minutes or so, alternating the lunar views between all three scopes. I was really liking what the 80mm was showing me.

    Grabbed the below Moon snap with the 80mm and my cell phone...

    The temperature had by this point fallen below freezing. Really feeling the cold now, I decided to pack up and go inside to get warm. I brought the mounted 80mm inside with me for a thorough cleaning the next morning.

    Stubbs (my astro cat) had stayed inside the whole evening. Probably smarter than me.

    Anyway, Sunday morning rolled around. AF was still out of commission. Studying the 80mm as it sat in my living room, I decided to tackle the cleaning.

    I pulled the OTA from the mount, removed the focuser and rings, as well as the dew shield and lens cell. Unfortunately, I could not separate the dew shield and lens cells. I got everything polished up and scrubbed as best I could. The objective lens cleaned up nicely with nary a scratch present.

    Below are some pics of the scope in my backyard after clean-up, plus one from the following Sunday evening as the Sun set prior to my observing session…

    I am really pleased with my find. Thanks to Gabrielle (Gabby76) and Chris (leveye) for the great advice on this scope prior to purchase! You guys are awesome!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Mak the Night

    Mak the Night Well-Known Member

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    Looks great.
     
    bladekeeper likes this.
  3. bladekeeper

    bladekeeper Active Member

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    Thanks! This scope is turning out to be a lot of fun to observe with. I've had it out briefly the past two evenings for some lunar viewing. I had fun watching the bats flitting about in front of the lunar disk last night.

    Sock in with clouds otherwise. :)
     
  4. Gabby76

    Gabby76 Well-Known Member

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    Beautiful scope, and a great price!
     
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  5. bladekeeper

    bladekeeper Active Member

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    Thanks Gab! :)
     
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  6. Dave In Vermont

    Dave In Vermont Well-Known Member

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    Beautiful scope and a great story behind it! All for $50? That nice wooden tripod, too? Wow!

    A most successful night, I'd say!

    Give the Cat a scratch behind-the-ears for me -

    Dave
     
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  7. larry walls

    larry walls Member

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    I have never seen a bad write up about these models of scopes, always highly regarded, quality vs price ! I put a 2” GSO single speed crayford and a 2” dielectric diagonal, all from Agena, on my 80mm and now it really flies high with great views ! One of my scopes I would never part with ! And if I can ever get my hands on the 120mm model ....... !
     
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  8. BillP

    BillP Well-Known Member

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    Here's what Company 7 has to say about this Celestron Premium 80:

    The objective optics are made in Japan by "Vixen" to rigid standards. This objective is an air-spaced achromat designed to yield the finest images available in this class of instrument. In our experience a very good 80mm telescope will outperform a lesser grade of 90mm telescope in many areas of astronomy. This 80mm telescope has a 910mm focal length (f/11.4). The optical tube is made of aluminum and the accompanying accessories are made of glass and metal to ensure excellent image quality and long service life.
     
  9. larry walls

    larry walls Member

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    Never a bad review!
     
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  10. Pleiades

    Pleiades Well-Known Member

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    Beautiful scope, and nice moon.
     
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  11. bladekeeper

    bladekeeper Active Member

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    Thanks guys. I am really enjoying this scope, sky permitting. I am working back through the Messier catalog with it. Enormous fun!
     
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  12. Dave In Vermont

    Dave In Vermont Well-Known Member

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    Sounds great, Bryan! I'm glad to hear from someone who's able to get out & about. We've been socked-in the clouds since mid-February, right after my new filters arrived! :p

    It's my fault...Tomorrow another Nor'easter is set to strike - third one in as many weeks!

    The more I hear about that telescope you have, the more it amazes me. And it sounds like the perfect instrument for bagging Messier objects by!

    Have fun for me too, please!

    Enjoy!

    Dave
     

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