How do I assemble a tasco telescope?

Written by gerry arlen good
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How do I assemble a tasco telescope?
A properly assembled Tasco telescope is a doorway to the heavens. (moonrise image by Paul Moore from Fotolia.com)

Tasco telescopes come packed with the optical tube assembly (OTA) and support stand separate. Before you can use the telescope, you must attach the OTA to the support stand properly. When you have put together the OTA and stand, you can place the eyepiece into the telescope draw tube and look out into a night of visual wonder.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Screwdriver (Phillips-head or straight edge depending on the screws found on the control knobs)

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Remove the optical tube assembly and the support stand from the packaging. Set aside the two flexible control arms included with equatorial mounts. Set aside the eyepiece or eyepieces.

  2. 2

    Open and lock the legs of the support stand by attaching the triangular centre support tray to each leg. Extend the legs to raise or lower the support stand until the top of the mount is at elbow height.

  3. 3

    Open the lockdown clamps on the mount so the optical tube can be placed into position, cradled by the lower clamp. Close the upper clamp across the tube and gently tighten it until the tube is securely locked in place and does not slide. Attach any control arms (long flexible knobs) if the mount is an equatorial mount. Firmly tighten the attachment screws.

  4. 4

    Loosen the axis locks on the telescope mount so that the optical tube, held in place by the lockdown clamps, moves in all directions freely. Position the optical tube directly over the mount and support stand, then lock the controlling axis lock so the telescope remains oriented directly over the mount and support.

  5. 5

    Loosen the lockdown clamps enough to move the optical tube forward or backward within the clamps until it is balanced and remains in place without the axis lock being tightened. Tighten the axis lock so that the optical tube is locked in place.

  6. 6

    Insert the eyepiece into the draw tube and lock it into place using the thumbscrew on the side of the draw tube. Remove the lens cover found at the end of the optical tube. For equatorial mounts, use the control knobs to move the telescope. For other mounts, loosen the axis locks and move the telescope by hand to the desired position. Tighten the axis locks.

Tips and warnings

  • There are two axis locks. One for declination (up and down) and one for right-ascension (left or right). Loosening both allows the telescope to swing in all direction. Loosening only one will allow the telescope to move up/down or left/right, depending on which lock is loosened.
  • When moving a telescope outdoors, allow about 20 minutes for the lenses or mirrors to cool to the outside temperature. This reduces thermal currents within the telescope and makes focusing easier.
  • Never view the sun with a telescope without a solar filter because it will cause permanent blindness.

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