Last updated: 30 September 2004
Subject: Finderscope for ETX review Sent: Tuesday, September 28, 2004 06:01:54 From: Mark Mittlesteadt (firstname.lastname@example.org) I've told a few people about my finderscope setup and some have suggested that I post my review of it to you so you could post it on your website. So, here it is.(there are two jpg attachments of it, mounted to my scope).
Orion 6X30 Right Angle Finderscope. I have tried various ways of replacing the junk finders that come with ETX scopes. Mine came with the 8X25 stock right angle finderscope that couldn't find anything. It was like looking through a distorted, dirty window. It wouldn't focus on anything. It was totally useless. I tried to find a way to get it to work, but the diagonal of it fell out and I noticed that Meade only puts one dot of super glue on it to hold it in there. Very cheap. I purchased an Orion 6X30 right angle finderscope. The cost is $49.95 and Orion has the best return policy. If something is wrong with it, they'll replace it no questions asked. The bracket that comes with it will work on any ETX scope. The dovetail it slips into is easily mounted on the ETX with double sided tape. This will raise the finder out of the way and the finder and the bracket easily comes out of the dovetail when storing your ETX in a standard case. However, I built my own case for it and I can leave my finder mounted to it when stored, so I used the stock Meade Finderscope holder that comes with the ETX scopes. My unique design of my case will be forthcoming. And it is truly a unique kind of case! The stock Meade ETX finderscope holder will fit the 6X30 Orion right angle finderscope. But you need to unscrew the diagonal from the finder first. Then take the holder off the ETX with the single mounting screw. Put the finderscope into the holder and slightly tighten down the alignment screws, so that the finderscope will still turn in it slightly. [NOTE: I used the metal screws that were in a Meade 6X30 finderscope bracket I had from another scope. You may wish to replace the cheap nylon screws in the holder with metal ones from a hardware store. I'm not sure of the size, so you might want to bring one of the nylon ones along to the store to compare]. Then screw the diagonal back on the finderscope. Once you get it screwed on tight, you can then straighten the diagonal upright and tighten the alignment screws down further (but don't make them too tight yet as you still need to align the finderscope with the ETX OTA). Then mount the Meade holder and your Orion right angle finderscope back on the ETX. The Orion 6X30 finderscope is of exceptionally good quality. The views are sharp to the edge of field. The optics are of such high quality, that I often find myself viewing the full moon through the finder only. It is a very pleasing view through the 6X30. The right angle finder makes a huge difference when viewing at, or near zenith. I no longer have to contort myself into an uncomfortable position. While my Autostar is very accurate, the finder is handy for the initial alignment procedure and also when getting the ETX to find those "hard to find" DSO's when the Autostar only gets you close. Some nights it's a tad off, but using the Orion right angle finder, I can get it dead on and the ETX keeps it there. One can get the Orion 8X50 right angle finder, but I think that is overkill on any ETX. Perhaps it might be useful for the 125, but on my ETX105, the 6X30 finds everything that I can see through the 105. With the Orion Right Angle Finderscope mounted on my ETX105 using the stock Meade ETX finderscope holder, the finderscope EP sits slightly higher than any of my EP's so my EP's are never in the way of the finder and visa versa. I view with my left eye, so it might make a difference if you use your right eye. If that's the case you can always tilt the diagonal away from the ETX EP slightly. Pictured is the finderscope on my ETX105 along with a Televue 32mm EP and also an Orion Red dot finder on the opposite side (mounted with double sided tape). Mark Mittlesteadt Artist / Owner AirDesigns www.airbrushdesigns.net
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