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Disaster - Dropped ST80 & Lunt Herschel Wedge


Glafnazur
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I thought I'd try some solar observing using my ST80 & Lunt Herschel Wedge and as the mount was slewing towards the sun the scope popped out the mount, I couldn't have tightened it enough. I tried to break the fall but just ended up propelling it onto the path 😞 I think the ST80 is ok but the Herschel Wedge looks pretty knackered, the head on one of the screws has sheered off.

 

Herschel Wedge Damage

 

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That is tragic news Dave.

The sheared screw is an easy fix.

So long as the wedge's internals have not been damaged it should be ok. 

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I can't see anything broken inside and nothing rattles so i guess that's a good sign.

 

Bearing in mind I'm not the most practical of people, how do I remove the sheared screw Graham?

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You can try to undo it using a small flat bladed screwdriver to pick at it.

It should not be tight now the head is missing.

If that does not work you need a special tool but like I say now the head is missing it should be loose.

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2 hours ago, philjay said:

Ouch, Ive dropped many a scope in the past.

 

If there arent any signs of breakage and no rattles the wedge should fix up OK as Graham says.

So have I.

 

I've got some stud extractors somewhere if you get stuck

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Thinking about this, are mishaps of this type down to Vixen style saddle rails in combination with German EQ mounts

rotating the OTA upside down etc ??

 

I have never trusted Vixen style mounting rails certainly on heavier instruments.

A bit of cold and dew together with activity at the focuser end make them a liability in my opinion.

 

I always prefer the wider 75mm Losmandy style rail, and on the few times i've ever purchased a scope, (new or used)

if its not fitted with one, its the first thing i change. Also being an alt-az mount user, the scope isn't doing gymnastics either.

Luckily, i've never dropped a scope, and i certainly can't let it happen now, so must take every precaution.

 

Thinking about it, i've dropped a camera body on one occasion, but it only fell a couple of feet into long grass and was ok. I did slap my wrists though.....😳

 

 

Edited by Bino-viewer
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1 hour ago, Bino-viewer said:

Thinking about this, are mishaps of this type down to Vixen style saddle rails in combination with German EQ mounts

rotating the OTA upside down etc ??

 

I have never trusted Vixen style mounting rails certainly on heavier instruments.

A bit of cold and dew together with activity at the focuser end make them a liability in my opinion.

 

I always prefer the wider 75mm Losmandy style rail, and on the few times i've ever purchased a scope, (new or used)

if its not fitted with one, its the first thing i change. Also being an alt-az mount user, the scope isn't doing gymnastics either.

Luckily, i've never dropped a scope, and i certainly can't let it happen now, so must take every precaution.

 

Thinking about it, i've dropped a camera body on one occasion, but it only fell a couple of feet into long grass and was ok. I did slap my wrists though.....😳

 

 

I don't think its the plate size it think it is the saddle design.

The 2 bolt system can "nip" one end and you think its tight only to find when the temp changes it slips.

Best bet is to fit a bolt through a hole in the plate to stop it slipping or use an extra clamp (I will take some snaps tomorrow if I remember) I don't tink the one I have is made anymore but I will check.

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2 hours ago, Ibbo said:

So have I.

 

I've got some stud extractors somewhere if you get stuck

Thanks Steve I'll have a go at it tomorrow 

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1 hour ago, Bino-viewer said:

Thinking about this, are mishaps of this type down to Vixen style saddle rails in combination with German EQ mounts

rotating the OTA upside down etc ??

 

I have never trusted Vixen style mounting rails certainly on heavier instruments.

A bit of cold and dew together with activity at the focuser end make them a liability in my opinion.

 

I always prefer the wider 75mm Losmandy style rail, and on the few times i've ever purchased a scope, (new or used)

if its not fitted with one, its the first thing i change. Also being an alt-az mount user, thescope isn't doing gymnastics either.

Luckily, i've never dropped a scope, and i certainly can't let it happen now, so must take every precaution.

 

Thinking about it, i've dropped a camera body on one occasion, but it only fell a couple of feet into long grass and was ok. I did slap my wrists though.....😳

 

 

It's the second time it's happened to me, the first time was with my 8 inch newtonian.  It didn't damage it, it just knocked it out of collimation. 

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Sorry to hear about that Dave. Heart through the bottom of your boots job. Hope it proves fixable..

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  • 2 weeks later...
16 hours ago, Ibbo said:

Did you get it sorted ?

 

 

As promised pics of the clamp

 

large.2053585673_20210906_1455391.jpg.d861cfd8d498835ef1518739ebc01a52.jpglarge.1180940204_20210906_1408341.jpg.0cc9d75a5688b164138a98a8467817b4.jpglarge.20210906_140827.jpg.b6cac8a97edae82379532a1f005b2815.jpg

No, not yet. I spent an hour on Saturday trying but no joy yet. I've  been a bit pressed for time as my wife came out of hospital last Wednesday after another close call with sepsis and she's needing a lot of support at the moment. 

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  • 3 months later...

UPDATE

 

I sent the wedge to FLO back in November for them to look at and they have just got back to me (they were snowed under with orders before Christmas). Initially they thought it would be an easy fix but the engineer has looked at it this morning and on closer inspection the prism holder is misaligned and the top eyepiece holder also seems to be at an angle and off-centre as well. They can't remove this as it seems to be completely stuck, possibly due to deformed threads from the impact it took. They can't do anything as they can't guarantee that any the repairs they did would work and it isn't worth risking my eyes., so it looks like I'll have to buy a new one sometime. 

 

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Sorry for you, that must be a blow. We have all sacrificed something to the floor at some point, mine was my 5" frac, I caught it but whacked the focuser. 

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Dave if you want to send it down to me I will see if it can be saved.

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On 10/01/2022 at 06:58, Graham said:

Dave if you want to send it down to me I will see if it can be saved.

Thanks Graham, at the moment it is still with FLO as they are holding on to it until I place another order to save postage (and it gives me an excuse for me to send for something else 🙂) I'll contact you once I've got it back if that's ok with you?

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