By Bill Dellinges (1/1/03)
Astrosystems Telescope Cover
All these years my telescopes have never had a good protective cover other than a blanket or plastic garbage bag cover. I’ve been wanting a good one especially for my observatory stored C14. I had been using big plastic bags which, after a while, become very dirty or torn, needing replacing every month or so. They also didn’t cover the entire telescope, motor drive, and wedge. I saw a nice one recently on a friend’s telescope and decided it was time to get something decent like his Astrosystems telescope cover (www.astrosystems.biz) (970-284-9471) to protect my venerable 14” SCT. The company also produces numerous telescope accessories like bearings, shrouds, mirror cells, spiders, etc. A few measurement and emails later, I determined I needed their – guess what? – SCT 14” cover. It measures 37” x 57” and was priced at $45 + $7 shipping. Right out of the box, I knew I had purchased a handsome, durable appearing product. It fit the telescope like a glove. For the best fit, the tube should be stored between the fork arms, then the cover reaches all the way down to the wedge base. However, you may also keep the tube horizontal. In this position, and with the fork arms tilted back at 33 degrees, the cover still will reach down to about the top of the motor drive (or you also buy the next bigger sized cover). There is a handy draw string at the cover’s bottom opening. An enclosed information sheet states the material is a “white 400 denier, polyurethane coated nylon fabric”. It’s pointed out this product is NOT designed for “continued outdoor use”, but its silicone water repellent outside surface and bonded polyurethane inner layer will nevertheless offer better protection than canvas or mylar tarps, according to Astrosystems. Check their web site for sizes and prices to fit just about any telescope or scope assembly. I’m very happy with this product. I only wish it was offered in other colors than just white.