Archive for February 2012

Questar Duplex 3.5-inch Telescope with Optional Zerodur Mirror, Broadband Coatings, Powerguide Quartz Drive

February 2, 2012

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     This afternoon I went by my friend Marty’s house for a few pictures of his Questar.  He lives only twenty or so minutes away. 

Sharing his story:  

     Marty always had an interest in Questar’s and hoped that one day he would own one.  During his early teens he would look at the Questar advertisement that would grace the back of the front cover of “Sky & Telescope Magazine” for so many years.  

     The advertisement featured a picture of this beautiful gem, and in bold letters “Questar Does It All” and then a small caption at the bottom “Questar, the world’s finest, most versatile telescope.” 

     Marty grew up in Queens, New York, and at the age of eighteen (1965) he visited the Questar factory, located in New Hope, Pennsylvania.  A demonstration scope was set-up, trained on a coin, a quarter, which was about fifty foot away.  He was very impressed with the most minute details that could be seen with this small scope.  

     Marty continued to look at those “Sky & Telescope Magazine” advertisements, and in 1996, only 31 years later, he was finally able to purchase his Questar.    

Roger Ivester 

Supplemental: 

      Questar Telescopes (Maksutov-Cassegrain) have been built in New Hope, Pennsylvania since 1950.  Questar has chosen Brandon eyepieces for many years, which are also made in the USA.   https://www.questar-corp.com/

     Brandon eyepieces are optimized for telescopes with a focal ratio of f/7 or greater.   https://043a19c.netsolhost.com/

During the early 50’s, Cave Optical in Long Beach, California, manufactured the 3.5-inch mirrors.

    Questar advertised on the back of the front cover page of “Sky & Telescope Magazine” for decades!

A challenge to Questar?   

     In 1996, Meade Instruments Corporation, introduced the Meade ETX 90mm Astro.  This telescope was designed to be an economy Questar.  Mostly constructed of plastic, but with all the emphasis on the optics.   

     At that time, Meade was manufacturing the ETX, as well as most all of their higher-end telescopes in Irvine, California.    

     I purchased an ETX 90 the following year (1997) for use as a very portable telescope, to observe deep-sky objects within its grasp.  It served that purpose well.  The telescope had very good optics and would easily exceed Dawes’ Limit on double stars on a night with good to excellent seeing. 

     Dawes Limit:  4.56/A (A is aperture in inches) for two equal stars of about 6th magnitude.   

https://www.astronomics.com/info-library/astronomical-terms/dawes-limit/                                                                                                                                                                                               

     However, when considering fit, finish, cosmetics and ease of use, the ETX “cannot” even remotely compare to the “much” more expensive and precision Questar.

     The 3.5-inch Questar continues to have its place in astronomy, despite most amateurs of today wanting larger and larger telescopes, but how many telescope companies do you know that have been in business since 1950?

      And from their longtime advertisement in “S&T” the following was said:   “Questar, The World’s Finest, Most Versatile Telescope”

     This must be true, to have survived in the ever-changing world of amateur astronomy equipment for 70 years.  (1950 – 2020)  

      I wrote the following story back in (2012) and it still receives views, even to this day.    Roger Ivester