This is a "fully loaded" version of the tried and tested 8" F8 Metal-Tube Ritchey-Chrétien with the following features:
A 2" Dual Speed Linear Bearing Focuser included as standard. It will handle a DSLR or CCD camera, and a light weight filter wheel perfectly well, and is adequate in most imaging situations. Note this focuser has the Linear Bearing upgrade, and will outperform most Taiwanese dual speed focusers, both in rigidity and pulling power. It is perfectly adequate for a DSLR/CCD camera and light weight filter wheel.
A Losmandy format dovetail plate and Vixen format bar are included, attached to the top and bottom of the optical tube.
You can now use one or more Altair TMS Vixen or Losmandy clamps clamps upside down (depending on the top bar type), to attach the rings to the underside and adjust the ring spacing to fit your guide scope without having to buy an additional dovetail plate. A small guide scope is perfect for this.
3x Heavy Duty Extension tubes included (2x 25mm & 1x 50mm) fitting between the focuser and the telescope. CNC Machined out of solid billet aluminium, zero flex.
Low expansion Quartz Mirrors with 96% reflective enhanced aluminium coatings with a Quartz overcoat (Silicon dioxide).
8" aperture true hyperboloid Primary & Secondary Mirrors.
Multiple internal light baffles line the optical tube.
Fast efficient cool down time compared to a normal
SCT due to the open-tube design.
This telescope is designed with enough backfocus to use an off axis guider, AO unit and filter wheel. Therefore, to create the most rigid imaging train possible, instead of placing extension tubes after the focuser it's best to place them between the focuser and the rear mirror cell. Therefore 1x 50mm and 2x 25mm large diameter extension rings are included for this purpose, which can be placed between the focuser and telescope (with zero flex), for adjusting your backfocus.
Dimensions: OTA length 455mm Outside diameter 230mm Tube weight is 7.5kgs. The central obstruction diameter is 95mm
Click here to see the Altair RC Collimation Adjuster Plate
Remember this product includes 3x extension tubes and 2x Losmandy plates top and bottom.
This is a "fully loaded" version of the tried and tested 6" F9 Ritchey-Chrétien with the following features:
Two Vixen/Synta format dovetail bars are included, with one on top of the scope for guide scope attachment using the Altair TMS Lightweight Guide Scope Rings. You can now use one or more Altair TMS Vixen clamps upside down, to attach the rings to the underside and adjust the ring spacing to fit your guide scope. A small guide scope is perfect for this.
Low weight of about 5.5kg makes this the ideal portable long focal length imaging scope, freeing up your mount capacity for other accessories.
High quality BK7 Mirrors with 96% reflective enhanced aluminium coatings and a Quartz overcoat (Silicon dioxide).
6" F9 true hyperboloid primary & secondary Mirrors (1370mm Focal Length).
Multiple internal light baffles line the interior of the optical tube.
Fast efficient cool down time usually twice as fast as a normal SCT or Maksutov, due to the open-tube design of the RC.
Rear of OTA to CCD approx 250mm
Dimensions: Tube length 390mm Outside diameter 198mm and weighs 5.4kgs and has a central obstruction of 77mm
Click here to see the Altair Focuser Collimation Adjustment Plate
Here's an autoguiding package for customers who want a quality flex-free autoguider system, with a larger aperture than our very popular Altair Miniguider 60.
This will suit scopes with a focal length of around 2 metres or more, and is suitable as a "video finder" too. A very rigid set of Altair light weight guide scope rings carries the light-weight 80mm F4.1 guide scope optical tube assembly.
The Altair Maxiguider 80 Guide-Scope Package consists of the following:
- 80mm F4.1 achromat optical tube assembly with dew-shield and objective cap.
- 1.25" Lockable Auto-guider Focuser Adapter with 3x clamping screws.
- Altair 100mm Ultralight Guide Scope Rings (GSR-100).
- Altair 180mm Vixen Dovetail Bar (VDB-CL-180).
- 4x stainless steel screws to attach the GSR100 to the Dovetail bar.
- a 1.25" RACI diagonal with helical focuser (suitable for use with a 1.25" eyepiece).
You can choose black anodized Guide Scope Rings and corresponding 180mm Vixen format dovetail bar instead of the default silver, from the options list below.
This is a very good intro price for what you get, and we will try to maintain it for as long as we can, but it could increase soon.
In stock, and ready to ship now
**Price Includes Carriage**
The Altair Lightwave 80mm F6.25 is a portable ED refractor for imaging and visual use. The doublet F6.25 ED optics feature a Synthetic Fluorite Ohara FPL53 ED element for very good colour correction and high contrast images. Colour aberrations are almost invisible with well corrected eyepieces even on bright objects at high power. For terrestrial spotting use, this multi-purpose instrument outperforms spotting scopes costing up to 4x the price with ease when an astro eyepiece is used. The design objective was to keep weight low for portability, while adding a rack and pinion focuser, tube rings, and a proper, rigid, imaging compatible interface for CCD and DSLR camera users. This product combines all the features our customers have been asking for, and then some.
Several features make the Altair Lightwave 80mm F6.25 solid choice for imaging or visual use. The dual speed rack and pinion focuser with a 1:10 ratio fine adjustment knob makes accurate focusing easy. That means sharp images at the eyepiece, or on your camera CCD chip (focusing is especially easy in "live view mode" on a DSLR). 8x steel roller bearings support the focuser tube along it's length, making the focuser more rigid than focusers of comparable size, while keeping the overall optical tube as light as possible. A rack 'n pinion gear improves the "lifting power" of the focuser, making it similar to a large Crayford, but keeping weight and size down to fulfill the portability requirement. Proper tube rings grip the optical tube, with a standard M6 hole spacing. This enables use of the Altair TMS 180 Vixen-format dovetail bar so you can mount this telescope side-by-side, or "piggyback" it on another telescope with a solid connection. By allowing the use of a proper tube ring / dovetail bar system, the whole system is more rigid compared to designs using an L-Shaped foot attached to the focuser by one bolt. With dual tube rings, the telescope is supported along it's length, allowing easier balancing. The included aluminium-finish carry case is padded with protective foam, and protects the scope for travel.
Adapters: The rear of the focuser sports a M54x0.75mm thread, enabling direct connection of several cameras and filter wheels and keeping the aperture as clear as possible. The telescope includes an M54x0.75mm to standard 2" push-fit adapter enabling the use of standard astro 2" eyepieces and diagonals. What's more, the adapter has 3x clamping screws (one thumbscrew and two slotted) with 120 degree separation, to ensure a rigid connection and a tight grip on your visual or imaging accessories. To make the system even more compatible with modern imaging equipment, an optional M54x0.75mm to M48x0.75mm (e.g. Standard filter thread) adapter is also available. This lets you screw the Altair M48 variable spacer system directly to the focuser, to connect M48 CCD cameras, filter wheels and field flatteners, or your digital SLR via any standard M48 DSLR camera adapter.
Mounts: For imaging, this telescope enables you to use a very light weight mount indeed so just about any mount from about EQ5 size upwards will do, and unguided exposures are possible provided you polar align accurately. For visual use or solar observing, this telescope is an ideal companion for the iOptron Cube PRO and this would be an airline portable package similar in size to a medium camera zoom lens.
80mm Doublet, Ohara Synthetic Fluorite FPL-53 ED lens, 500mm focal length.
Max practical power 160x (approx.)
540mm folded length, weight 3kg (approx.)
Dual Speed 1:10 ratio “Rack ‘n Pinion” focuser with internal baffling.
M54x0.75mm rear thread > 2” push-fit adapter with 3x clamping screws and brass compression ring included.
Alu-finish case with foam padding.
Optional M48 male-thread imaging adapter, compatible with Altair M48 variable spacers or a DSLR M48 adapter.
2x Tube rings, enabling use of a proper Vixen-format dovetail bar for maximum compatibility with mounts, and a very short fold-down length for travel.
**Please Note the price includes carriage**
This is a heavy duty saddle plate which is compatible with both the Vixen/Synta (far East) telescope mounting bars, or the Losmandy (USA) wide format mounting plates.
**Please Note Our Prices Include Carriage**
The Universal Saddle Plate or "USP" is also compatible with the rest of the blue anodised Altair TMS Telescope Mounting System accessory range.
Altair Heavy Duty USP Features:
•Compatible with Far East and US telescope mounts, including iOptron Minitower with the appropriate adapter. The most compatible and modular system on the market bar none.
•Safe and easy "tip in" saddle lets you place your telescope quickly and easily while tightening up the clamps with your other hand. This avoids that awkward struggle in the dark, while you try to hold onto a damp slippery telescope, while carefully lining up a saddle plate which will only go in from the end. Based on feedback and requests from several customers who have nearly dropped their telescopes!
•Chamfered edges to make it even easier to get a heavy telescope placed securely, before tightening the clamps with your other hand.
•Heavy duty hard anodised star knobs, custom-machined for a positive grip (we tested several iterations).
•2x Heavy duty spring loaded clamps with Stainless Steel M8 threads (unlike cheap chromed, or zinc plated threads which corrode after a few months as the coating flakes away).
•Looks great in hard anodised "Altair Blue" to match the rest of the TMS range. What's more, we haven't compromised on quality, function dictates form, not the other way round.
•No sharp edges or poor machining.
•The clamp has it's own machined guides, unlike inferior makes where the thread alone takes most of the strain.
•The right level of quality at the right price - try adding up everything you need and bearing versatility in mind when comparing to other makes.
•Readily available and made locally in the UK at our machine shop on HAAS 4 axis CNC milling machines. That means we have complete control over quality.
•The Altair USP bolts directly to the Losmandy G11, replacing the factory saddle plate, a very popular upgrade.
•With the addition of an Altair TMS Equatorial mount adapter puck, the USP-2 will also fit the Synta/Skywatcher/Orion USA EQ6, H-EQ5 and EQ5 mounts too.
•It also has a pair of standard M8 "Takahashi" style holes on the base with 35mm separation, enabling the Universal Saddle Plate to be mounted on the William Optics Easytouch and numerous other mounts, including Takahashi with the appropriate Tak adapter puck.
PLEASE NOTE PRICES INCLUDE DELIVERY
**Please note our prices include carriage**
•The Altair TMS "Vixen - Synta" Dovetail Bar is available in two different lengths of 170mm (VDB-170) and 250mm (VDB-250).
•These Far East style dovetail bars are narrow and light and are a good option for small optical tubes.
•A countersunk M6 hole at each end, plus a countersunk M6 slot, allows maximum flexibility for attachment to most telescope tube rings.
•To mount lighter telescope tubes side by side, we recommend the Altair TMS "Small Vixen Dovetail Clamp" which is designed to fit onto either end of our Losmandy plates directly, letting you mount two telescopes side by side.
•All Altair TMS components are CNC machined in aluminium and hard-anodised in Altair Blue to match the rest of the TMS range.
The Altair MiniGuider System is based on the very popular Altair 60mm Finder. The package includes a 60mm finder optical tube assembly, a special focuser for Autoguiders and Webcams, finder rings, universal bracket and stalk.
The autoguider focuser is available separately as an upgrade for customers who already have the Altair 60mm Finder, and who would like to use it for autoguiding with a webcam or autoguider head such as the QHY5, Orion USA Starshoot, or any other autoguider with a 1.25" barrel.
The product is designed to provide you with a stable platform to attach your autoguider or webcam, having to use a separate telescope. Any webcam or autoguider with a 1.25" barrel will fit. The package is ideal for astro-imagers who have a wide field portable imaging system and will work well with telescopes up to 1 metre focal length. This product is ideal for smaller capacity EQ mounts - by keeping weight down, you're putting less demand on your mount, and therefore tracking accuracy is improved.
The Webcam focuser can be rotated 360°. The 60mm objective has a focal ratio of f3.75 and a focal length of 225mm. The fast focal ratio objective is the same as found in the Altair 60mm finder, and the Mini-Guider focuser can be purchased separately, or together with an Altair finder system.
The included quick-release finder base has 4x 4mm slotted holes allowing you to fit it to most telescopes on the market. The mini-dovetail wedge on the bracket will actually fit any GSO or Skywatcher telescope directly, but we suggest you use this included base because it has 2x clamping screws, for far better rigidity than standard finder bases on the market.
The adjustable tube rings are light, yet more than rigid enough to stay in perfect alignment for autoguiding. They cannot rotate like other cheaper makes because the dovetail bar they sit upon has a slight channel to accept their profile. Nylon tipped screws avoid scratching the durable high quality and moisture resistant paint on the 60mm aluminium OTA.
All objective lenses are anti-reflection coated and the tube and dewshield are internally blackened to increase contrast. This is a high quality F3.75 achromat objective, and it will deliver pinpoint stars on your finder chip on axis, performing at the resolution limit of a 60mm lens. It is far higher quality than the lenses found in cheaper, and smaller finders, and will perform extremely well at this fast focal ratio, keeping your exposure times short, and stars very bright with a small dot size - exactly what's needed for precision autoguiding.
The RC design is a true reflective design with no refractive optical elements. As such it provides superb light transmission.
The coma free field of this standard RC delivers wide flatfield performance on cameras up to the APS sized DSLR sensors.
Full format cameras require an optional corrector to achieve flat field performance.
Click here to read a review on the 10" RC
The scope features a fixed primary and secondary mirror for flex free imaging. Included is a set of 3 thread on extension tubes to enable you to place your camera at the correct back focus distance for optimal performance. These thread between the scope and the 3" focuser - again for flex free performance.
The 3" Dual Speed Crayford focuser is a big jump in strength and rigidity from the 2" models and can easily accomodate DSLR and most CCD Imaging cameras.
This scope is a true Ritchey Chretien Astrograph and does not feature a full aperture corrector such as SCT and SCT design scopes.
This is a "deluxe" version of the tried and tested 8" GSO / Orion / Astro Tech F8 Ritchey-Chrétien with the following features:
Low Weight - 7.8kg (Metal Tubed Version 9.8kg)
Fuzed quartz mirrors with dielectric coatings with higher reflectivity than the standard aluminium/SI02 coatings on the metal tube version.
Now ships with 2 x Losmandy plates top and bottom.
•A 2" Dual Speed Linear Bearing Focuser included as standard. It will handle a DSLR or CCD camera, and a light weight filter wheel perfectly well, and is adequate in most imaging situations. Note this focuser has the Linear Bearing upgrade, and will outperform most Taiwanese dual speed focusers, both in rigidity and pulling power. It is perfectly adequate for a DSLR/CCD camera and light weight filter wheel.
•NEW feature: The base of the scope now has a light-weight Losmandy-format plate to fit the iEQ45 or other Losmandy-format mounts directly. This is more rigid than the channel type Vixen/Synta format dovetail bar found on other models.
A light weight Vixen/Synta type dovetail bar is included along the top of the telescope for guide scope attachment using the Altair TMS Lightweight Guide Scope Rings. You can now use one or more Altair TMS Vixen clamps upside down, to attach the rings to the underside and adjust the ring spacing to fit your guide scope. A small guide scope is perfect for this.
•Low weight low expansion Carbon Fibre OTA, weight 7.5kg! (16.4lbs) not only giving more accurace tracking but freeing up your mount capacity for other accessories. The use of a carbon fibre weave composite reduces the weight of the optical tube with no loss of strength or rigidity compared to an aluminium tube. It also doesn't store heat like metal, so convection currents are reduced.
•Low expansion Quartz Mirrors with 96% reflective Enhanced coatings with higher reflectivity than standard mirror coatings on other versions of this scope.
•Optional field flattener available, optimised for this optical design.
•8" aperture true hyperboloid Primary & Secondary Mirrors.
•Multiple internal light baffles line the optical tube.
•Fast efficient cool down time compared to a normal SCT due to the open-tube design.
•This telescope is designed with enough backfocus to use an off axis guider, AO unit and filter wheel. Therefore, to create the most rigid imaging train possible, instead of placing extension tubes after the focuser it's best to place them between the focuser and the rear mirror cell. Therefore 1x 50mm and 2x 25mm large diameter extension rings are included for this purpose, which can be placed between the focuser and telescope (with zero flex), for adjusting your backfocus.
Advantages of RC Astrographs: This true Ritchey Chretien astrograph is completely optimised for imaging. Consider these points when choosing a dedicated imaging telescope.
•Aperture, price and weight. A pure two-mirror optical system means zero colour aberration and a large aperture with high resolution compared to refractors costing many times more and weighing many times more, to gain the same resolution, whilst using a reasonably priced mount.
•No mirror shift. Because it has a fixed focuser, the primary mirror flop and resultant image shift issues associated with long focal length SCT telescopes with moving mirrors are avoided. There is no need for mirror locks and the additional problems these bring when it comes to focusing. There aren't any complex internal parts to move the mirrors back and forth while attempting to keep them accurately aligned so there's less to move about.
•Repeatable focusing. Another benefit of a high quality external focuser, is that the mirrors don't have to move relative to each other to focus the telescope, and so because everything remains in place, the focal point doesn't change outside the tube, making it easier for you to achieve repeatable, accurate focusing time and time again. That's essential for imaging.
•A better focuser for a great price. Unlike a standard Crayford focuser, the LBF focuser won't flex as much and it can take a higher load such as a DSLR or filter wheel, without slippage or backlash. That's because it has a longer and more precise steel load bearing surface, which is in contact with the focuser tube along more of it's length, rather than being supported by bearings with small contact points - a common issue with other Crayfords. This steel track focuser surface will not wear unevenly like aluminium-only surfaces on other focusers.
•Easier to mount and guide. The optical tube is very light yet very rigid and strong, minimising flex. With a weight 7.5kg (16.4lbs) this telescope is one of the lightest in this aperture range. It can be carried by a reasonably priced EQ mount like the iOptron iEQ45 45lb capacity mount, along with a guide scope and wide field refractor. Using an EQ6 or CGEM is also possible as long as a very light weight guide scope is used.
•Fastest cool-down time in it's class. Don't spend the whole night waiting for your scope to cool down. Closed tube telescopes with corrector plates such as Maksutovs and SCTs can take so long to cool down that they never reach ambient temperature during the whole night. The RC optical tube is an open design, minimising cool down time compared to SCTs with closed tubes, and three rear cooling fans embedded in the rear mirror cover bring the primary mirror down to ambient temperature as quickly as possible. (a battery pack is included or the fans can be powered by a Kendrick controller).
•Contrast and controlling stray light. The internal knife edge baffles and matte black interior ensure high contrast and minimize the intrusion of stray light, reducing background glare on long exposure images. You will never have to to line the interior of this instrument with "flocking paper" to improve contrast - common practise with other imaging reflectors. Because there is no large corrector plate pointing at the sky, it's very rare for condensation or dew to form on the optics and it almost never occurs. However for unusual and extremely dewy conditions, Kendrick dew control system heaters will fit the secondary mirror.
•Optical performance: The surfaces of the Ritchey-Chrétien primary and secondary mirrors are hyperbolic, and are carefully optimised to reduce coma, an optical aberration which results in flared stars at the edges of the photographic field in other Cassegrain designs. The Ritchey-Chrétien design was previously only available in large scale observatory optics, however, as mirror polishing techniques have advanced, they are finally available to the amateur astro photographer at a reasonable price. Further aberrations like field curvature are removed by the field corrector/flattener, available separately, and useful for large CCD sensors, or DSLR users, and is similar to those offered by other manufacturers charging up to four times the price.
•Price and performance for this aperture at an F8 focal length. For the aperture, resolution, and performance, this scope is simply the best value we have been able to source. We do not know of any other large aperture imaging OTA which can deliver results at this focal length which even comes close. Closed tube telescopes with an F10 focal ratio usually cost about 25-30% more. Not only are you paying less money for a genuine RC telescope designed for imaging from the ground up, but you are getting a faster optical system which places less demand on mount, tracking and CCD camera due to shorter exposure times.
NEW - Altair have removed 200g of aluminium from each 120mm Guide Scope Ring giving a weight saving of 400g overall compared to the previous 120mm rings.
**Please note price includes carriage**
•Each pair of Altair TMS guidescope rings are made from light, yet strong aluminium - rigid enough to hold heavier optical tubes, including triplet APOs without damage.
•Our new lightweight design ensures that Altair GSR-LW rings are 400g lighter than our previous design for better tracking accuracy.
•Check out this customer review of the Altair TMS Guide Scope Rings (opens new window).
•Altair Guide Scope Rings are unique because they can be mounted on the top or bottom of our Losmandy-format or Vixen-format bars via two bolts on each ring. That stops them twisting - unlike other makes with single bolts and limited mounting positions.
•Altair guide scope rings fit Altair TMS Losmandy-format plates or Vixen-format bars using the same two-hole pattern. You can adjust the separation of the rings by choosing different holes along the length of the plate.
•You can attach our GSR Guide Scope Rings to the underside of our Losmandy-format saddle plates (LSP) and Vixen-format clamps (SVDC) to mount rings at varying distances from each other. (See pics).
•GSR-LW rings have flattened edges for good contact with the bar or plate they're fastened onto and are far more rigid than competing makes.
•The GSR-LW benefits from easy-grip hard anodised knobs, custom-machined for a positive grip (we tested several iterations).
•The Altair GSR-LW uses all stainless steel M6 collimation threads and aluminium knobs, unlike cheaper chromed, carbon black, or zinc plated threads which corrode after a few months in moist conditions.
•Each thread has no-scratch end caps covering the end of the thread in contact with the telescope. Unlike other brands with hard nylon inserts protruding from the end of the thread, this gives a much more "forgiving" contact with the optical tube, preventing paint chips and scratches common with other makes. They also give a more positive grip, due to a larger surface area.
•No sharp edges or poor machining here. Each part is hand polished before anodising to remove burs and give a smooth finish.
•TMS is readily available and made in the UK (by a guy called Dave) at our local machine shop on HAAS 4 axis CNC milling machines, which means we have complete control over quality.
•And finally, we know it's dark when you use it, but the GSR looks great in hard anodised "Altair Blue" to match the rest of the TMS range.
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