Congratulations! You have bought a wonderful telescope. This is a precision optical instrument, and you have many wonderful evenings of observing the night sky ahead of you. This on-line guide is to help you assemble your telescope properly.
Of course, the telescope comes with an assembly guide, and we were able to assemble our in telescope less than 20 minutes using that guide.
However, we know that many people are visually oriented and that pictures of the assembly process would be helpful. Since your telescope assembly guide and instruction manual does not have a lot of pictures, we have put together this online guide to help you assembe your telescope for your first night of observing. Please Note: the paper assembly guide is outdated in many respects, it refers to H-class eyepieces, for example, but your telescope actually shipped with superior Plossl eyepieces.
Once your telescope is assembled and ready to go, the rest is up to you. Learning astronomy is all the fun anyhow! So let’s get started . . .
ASSEMBLING THE TRIPOD
Putting the tripod together is a snap!
- Step 1
Remove the partially assembled tripod from the plastic sleeve. You will see three black metal flaps about halfway down each leg. One of these will have the accessory tray already attached with a single Phillips head screw. Within the plastic bag surrounding the tray will be the remaining two screws and screwdriver needed to complete the assembly of the tripod.
Secure each side of the accessory tray with a screw and wing nut. Remember to place a washer on each side! Figure 1 shows one side of the tray being secured.
Figure 1 – Attaching Accessory Tray to Tripod
- Step 2
Find the Equatorial Mount, Horizontal Axis Clamp Screw , and Polar Axis Screw, shown in Figure 2 below.
Figure 2 – The EQ mount, Horizontal Axis Clamp Screw, and Polar Axis Screw.
- Step 3
Make sure the tripod is sturdy before proceeding. Then, attach the equatorial mount to the tripod and tighten it in place from underneath using the Horizontal Axis Clamp Screw as shown in Figure 3 below.
Figure 3 – Attaching the equatorial mount and tightening it in place.
- Step 4
Insert the polar axis screw as shown below in Figure 4 below. Once that is attached, you can adjust the equatorial mount so that it is stable in an upright position.
Figure 4 – Attaching the polar axis screw.
- Step 5
Attach one of the flexible cables (the declination flexible cable control) to the worm gear drive as shown in Figure 5 below.
Figure 5 – Attaching the declination flexible cable control.
- Step 6
There is a groove in the worm gear attachment, use the thumb screw to tighten the flexible cable control to the worm gear drive as shown in Figure 6, below. Make it good and tight!
Figure 6 – Tightening the flexible cable control.
- Step 7
Next, attach the other flexible cable (the right ascension flexible cable control) to the worm gear drive as shown in Figure 7 below. Be sure to tighten the thumb screw like you did in Step 6.
Figure 7 – Attaching the right ascension flexible cable control.
- Step 8
Slide the counterweight onto the balance shaft as shown in Figure 8.
Figure 8 – Placing the counterweight on the balance shaft.
- Step 9
Screw the balance shaft into the hole at the bottom of the declination shaft as shown in Figure 9. You can now use the set screw in the counterweight to hold the counterweight in place up and down the balance shaft. This will allow you to balance the telescope when it is completely assembled, making it possible to rotate the telescope smoothly by the slightest turn of the flexible cable controls.
Figure 9 – Attaching the balance shaft and counterweight to the equatorial mount.
- Step 10
Attach the body belt to the equatorial mount by sliding it into position as shown in Figure 10 below. Use the tightening knob to tighten the body belt to the equatorial mount.
Figure 10 – Attaching the body belt to the equatorial mount.
- Step 11
Carefully place the main telescope tube in the body belt and tighten it in place with tightening clamp screw as shown in Figure 11 below.
Figure 11 — Attaching the main telescope tube to the body belt.
- Step 12
Carefully attach the sighting scope to the main telescope tube using the round nuts as shown in Figure 12 below.
Figure 12 – Attaching the sighting scope.
- Step 13
Smile! You did it. Now go enjoy your telescope. You probably will want to align the sighting scope during the daytime because it is easier. You should do this outside and point the telescope at something at least 50 yards away. Objects will be seen upside down through the eyepiece — this is normal! When you are looking at distant stars, it won’t matter if they are upside down. We do sell an “erecting” eyepiece if you want to see images rightside up.
Figure 13 – Ready to observe.