View Full Version here: : More dangerous sun filters?

Marko of Oz
21-03-2007, 08:50 PM
After reading the sticky about screw in eyepiece sun filters I saw them for sale with a telescope on the Australian ebay site. Maybe someone knowledgable about these laws would like to educate this person? Here's a link to the item which is due to go off in less than 4 days from this posting. http://cgi.ebay.com.au/150-APERTURE-NEWTONIAN-REFLECTOR-TELESCOPE-EQ-BRAND-NEW_W0QQitemZ330099236701QQcategory Z3636QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem


21-03-2007, 09:19 PM
Thanks Marko I have emailed the vendor company to alert them to the illegal sun filter they are selling.
I fully expect to be ignored but if enough people do the same they might actually do something about it.

21-03-2007, 09:21 PM
Good onya Marko. I'm over there too. Email on the way.

21-03-2007, 09:30 PM
Sent an email too. I'm almost tempted to buy this telescope to save someones sight. They probably have 50 sitting in a garage.:shrug:

22-03-2007, 03:35 PM
Here we go again!

I've just sent this e-mail:


Attn. Sales Manager: Dangerous product

Dear Gensel Sales Manager,

Dangerous product alert.

I wish to bring to your attention that the 'sun filter' sold with your "Newtonian 150 Aperture Reflector Telescope" is a dangerous accessory and should be removed from this and any other telescope product before sale.

These eyepiece filters are prone to cracking or shattering with the concentrated heat of the sun and can lead to instant, serious eye injury or permanent blindness due to the eye’s exposure to the direct, magnified light of the Sun.

I know someone who had this happen to them as a teenager some years ago: it took 3 minutes for the eyepiece sun filter to disintegrate (luckily while the observer was looking away). Heaven forbid that this should occur with one of your telescopes while a child is viewing the sun.

Advanced amateur astronomers are acutely aware of the dangers of solar viewing. Not only do they use specialised full-aperture filters, but are extremely careful to remove or cover even the small finderscopes that are attached to the main telescope. (See reference below)

The retina at the back of the eye has no nerve endings to detect damaging infra-red and ultra-violet radiation which are likely to be transmitted by these eyepiece solar filters. Thus, damage is likely to occur even if the filter manages to remain intact.

As this is a very serious issue, I intend to alert Victorian Consumer Affairs about this product, and I would also like confirmation of receipt of this e-mail.

I am sure that you and your company are keen to sell only safe products, and you will do everything possible to ensure that this filter does not get into the hands of the unsuspecting public.

Yours sincerely,

Michael Oakey

UNSW Faculty of Medicine
Prince of Wales Hospital
Barker Street, Randwick, NSW 2031
Sydney, Australia

http://www.astrosociety.org/education/publications/tnl/17/17.html extract:

“Many filters that are sometimes recommended for observing the Sun are not safe for direct-eye viewing, including a piece of glass blackened by soot from a candle, sunglasses, photographic neutral-density filters, and solar filters that operate at the eyepiece of telescopes or binoculars. Eyepiece filters are especially dangerous; they are placed at the point where the Sun's light is most concentrated and magnified. They can crack or even explode.”

22-03-2007, 04:16 PM
good luck...

22-03-2007, 05:59 PM
I had a reply last night from Gensel, and they gave an undertaking to "look into it" which is certainly hopeful.

I just checked the ebay ad. It hasn't been altered and still has the sun filter offered in the advert.

22-03-2007, 06:38 PM
Just had a look at at this Add and found they have taken all your warnings and added this to the add.

On 22-Mar-07 at 18:29:55 AEDST, seller added the following information please be advised of the error in the above listing that has been bought to our attention. The ad states that the telescope includes a SUN FILTER. This is incorrect, the SUN FILTERS have been removed from the telescope contents before they were imported to Australia as they are deemed illegal and dangerous here. There was a miscommunication between our Importing department and Web Master leading to the inclusion of them into our ads. We apologize for any inconvenience and would like to thank those people who have alerted us to this error.

22-03-2007, 07:01 PM
I received a similar reply Geoff.

It's great to see they have taken notice. Excellent result for everyone. :clap:

22-03-2007, 07:07 PM
Indeed, let all those who emailed give themselves a pat on the back :D

22-03-2007, 07:49 PM
the SUN FILTERS have been removed from the telescope contents before they were imported to Australia as they are deemed illegal and dangerous here.


Marko of Oz
22-03-2007, 09:00 PM
Nice to know we can make a positive difference.

23-03-2007, 12:32 PM
Going to the UK in September, will do my best there! ;)

23-03-2007, 01:41 PM
go team!

well done guys :)