old telescope, advice/instructions needed

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grahamwarren
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old telescope, advice/instructions needed

Post by grahamwarren »

i've been given this (it was going to end up in a skip but i rescued it) http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4143/475 ... 79d7_b.jpg it's got b.cooke ltd engraved on one end. it has no tripod assembly so is a bit unwieldy. i'd really like to get it functioning but am at a loss to how to set it up. are tripods available for this sort of thing? are there instructions anywhere? can anyone help with any snippets of info? i've tried contacting the makers (in hull) but there has been no response. i've also done lots of googling concerning tripods (no luck) so am considering knocking something homemade up so i'm not balancing the thing on my shoulder like some steam driven rpg launcher. i'd be grateful for any assistance. graham.
Bizibilder
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Post by Bizibilder »

You've got yourself a rather nice 'scope there!! To mount it you will need some tube rings - measure the outside diameter of the brass tube and get the nearest size rings - you can fill any "gap" with felt or similar. Then these can be attached to a suitable mounting. Mountings and tripods etc are readily available from telescope suppliers. However, to do this scope justice you may want an all brass mount and wooden tripod - this would have to be custom made and hence would be expensive!
You give little information about the scope or what you intend to use it for - astronomy or as a "spotting scope" - this will depend on the eyepieces that you have, if any. The scope will be "non standard" to todays equipment so you may have to hunt around for appropriate bits.
Whatever happens DON'T throw it away!!!! or, worse, flog it on EBay!! There are collectors who would give you a fair price for a good quality, decorative and useful, brass scope.
Bizibilder
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grahamwarren
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Post by grahamwarren »

thanks so far for help. i'll take some more photos of all the bits and pieces and post them up here for folks to take a look at. i want to set it up to do some sky gazing (i'll start with the moon and work outwards) so i'm not going to get rid of it just yet. would be interested in how much it's worth to collectors...
Bizibilder
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Post by Bizibilder »

Could you give its size please? You need to give the diameter of the large lens at the end of the main tube and the overall length of the tube - from this the basic characteristics of the optics can be deduced.
Thank you.
Bizibilder
Norfolk UK

Blog: http://bizibilder.blogspot.com/
grahamwarren
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Post by grahamwarren »

i'll do measurements and photos tomorrow...watch this space.
Brian
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Post by Brian »

Hi Graham.

The name Cooke is associated with many fine lenses and telescopes dating from the mid-1850s onwards. These instruments were crafted by T. Cooke and Sons though, not B. Cooke. However, there is a B.Cooke Ltd based in Hull as you say:

http://www.bcookeandson.co.uk/products.htm

est. 1863, who list amongst other things "Astronomical telescopes" on their products list. I wonder if they were some relation to the great T Cooke?

It all sounds rather interesting :)

HTH,
Brian
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grahamwarren
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Post by grahamwarren »

i've taken more pictures and made measurements (if you need any more please ask)...the photo set is here: http://bit.ly/9g7LC6

advice, comments welcome...i'd particularly like to know how to attach what bit to which bit to get it up and running...
mike a feist
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Post by mike a feist »

hello Graham

I have just sent you a private message following a phone call from
David Frydman (co-author with Robin Scagell of Stargazing with Binoculars. he has some ideas about your telescope but does not have e-mail. Please read.
Robin Scagell
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Post by Robin Scagell »

SPA member David Frydman tells me that a telescope like this could be worth at least £300. The Not bad for a skip rescue! The two screws on the tube imply that it was originally mounted using these screws onto a tripod rather than with tube rings.

Robin
grahamwarren
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Post by grahamwarren »

thanks. i'll give that chap a ring.
Lady Isabella
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Post by Lady Isabella »

Graham.

The scope you have there is extremely similar, if not identical to several telescopes I've seen made by W. Wray of London. On Wray scopes the lens cell is simply screwed into the tube, if you un-screw the lens cell, you may find it says WRAY LONDON or indeed another makers mark if not Wray.
grahamwarren
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Post by grahamwarren »

there is no makers name on the inside of the lens assembly, sorry.

i have spoken with david frydman and he tells me there are some bits missing: stabilising rod, tripod (i'd like to get one like in this picture: http://www.mwclassic.com/acatalog/53624L.jpg).

the three small eyepiece lens are huygenians which also have what look like different coloured filters on the ends. i'll post extra photos of those soon.

he's given me simple instructions on setting it up.

please keep the advice/comments coming. i do appreciate your input.
Grendel
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Post by Grendel »

Whatever you do dont polish the brass, the old brass patina is important both in the value of the telescope and to protect it, some brass cleaners use addatives that can cause the brass to harden and become brittle, remember we are only holding these old things in trust for future generations, and to appreciate the beauty and use an old precision instrument made by craftsmen.
My advice would be to join the antique telescope society yahoo group, there are some truly brilliant and knowledgable people on there who can give the best advice there is about antique telescopes (from museum conservators to optical restorers) the main website for the ATS is
http://Oldscope.org
and the yahoo group can be found here
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ATS_Forum/
Best wishes for you and your lucky acquisition.
Grendel
Lady Isabella
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Post by Lady Isabella »

Here are a couple of links to a Wray scope.
http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/museums ... itions.asp

and one for sale at the moment.
http://www.astrobuysell.com/uk/propview.php?view=35559

The problem with identifying these old scopes is that many companies,
like T.Cooke, Wray, Ross, Watson and Broadhurst Clarkson et al, all supplied each other with bits and pieces.

Wray made many excellent scopes, but some were simply re-badged scopes made by T.Cooke.
The Cooke made "Student" scope is a classic example, that scope was re-badged and supplied to many of
the well known British scope makers.

The practise was also widespread with many of the Broadhurst Clarkson scopes, that can be found under all types of names.
One hundred years from now I guess that scope collectors will have the same problem with many of the Chinese made APO scope
tubes and lenses that are now appearing under different brand names.

Even if you never discover who made the scope, you still have a very nice old scope there.
brian livesey
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Post by brian livesey »

Don't be in too much of a hurry to sell this 'scope, you might want to use it. What condition is the objective lens in?
brian
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