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Go Back   IceInSpace > Equipment > Eyepieces, Barlows and Filters

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  #21  
Old 18-11-2016, 04:05 PM
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Don't spray any cleaner directly on the lens as it could creep around the edges of the lens and get inside.
Instead, spray your cleaner on the q-tip and use the wet q-tip to clean the glass.
Make a spiral circle from center to edge.
Flip the q-tip over to the dry end and repeat, mopping up the fluid left by the wet end.
Repeat with a second q-tip with wet end and dry end.
Grab a 3rd q-tip and making a swipe from edge to just past center on a radial line, wipe back and forth as you rotate the eyepiece under the q-tip.
After about one revolution of the eyepiece, flip the q-tip over and continue for at least one more rotation of the eyepiece.

If the eyepiece is clean at this point, you're done.
But if you see spots, get the eyepiece lens wet with a solvent-carrying q-tip again only this time, mop the eyepiece dry and clean with a new, unused, soft microfiber cloth, and go around the entire lens until there are no spots.

Unless you're cleaning a filthy eyepiece, I doubt you'll ever get past the q-tip cleaning.
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  #22  
Old 18-11-2016, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RB View Post
James listen to John B's advice, as you know he's very knowledgeable and a highly experienced observer and eyepiece expert.

I just wanted to show you what I do if I have to deal with basic smudges etc that aren't too excessive.
Here's an example I did tonight for you on my Meade ETX 90, (btw I know my secondary is off centre, that's why it was dirt cheap).
I haven't cleaned it in over 5 years and it had a smear right across the corrector.
A few quick wipe-overs with my lens-pen and it's back to that 'show-room' look.

Anyway, good luck with your cleaning.

RB
Your secondary isn't off center, the glue holding the secondary baffle to the glass has softened and allowed the baffle to slide sideways from the secondary.
You can unscrew the from cell of the scope and pull the baffle off and re-cement it in the correct place.
Use a glue that won't liquify when it gets hot as the scope sits in the sun for an hour or two.
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  #23  
Old 18-11-2016, 04:27 PM
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RB (Andrew)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Pensack View Post
Your secondary isn't off center, the glue holding the secondary baffle to the glass has softened and allowed the baffle to slide sideways from the secondary.
You can unscrew the from cell of the scope and pull the baffle off and re-cement it in the correct place.
Use a glue that won't liquify when it gets hot as the scope sits in the sun for an hour or two.
Thank you for the info Don.
Much appreciated.

RB

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  #24  
Old 18-11-2016, 05:16 PM
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dreamstation (James)
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Does anyone have any suggestions on what went wrong with my previous cleaning attempt? I posted a picture on the previous page in case anyone missed it.

It seems the general consensus is to use cotton buds with some form of cleaner, alcohol, etc which is exactly what I did. It's just that it left behind an almighty film of crap that almost looks worse than the original problem I was trying to remove. Perhaps I was too generous with the alcohol?

Thanks a lot to everyone who has offered advice. Appreciate it!
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  #25  
Old 19-11-2016, 12:18 PM
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If the alcohol was pure and the cotton balls didn't have lanolin added, then whatever was on the eyepiece was partially put into solution and smeared around the lens.
It wouldn't be odd to have to clean something 3 or 4 times to get rid of all the residue.
I could regale you with stories about mascara and acidic fingerprints!
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  #26  
Old 19-11-2016, 01:20 PM
Wavytone (Nick)
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Quote:
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some form of cleaner, alcohol, etc which is exactly what I did. It's just that it left behind an almighty film of crap
What was the cleaner, exactly ? The point is that most cleaners sold for domestic uses contain variety of assorted gunks - traces of lanolin, parafin and many more are not uncommon.

Some exceptions I've found you can rely on are distilled water, the stuff sold by Astro shops to clean optics, or Windex glass cleaner. The various alcohols sold by chemists on the other hand contain traces of something oily. And acetone as sold for nail polish remover contains lanolin, while the "pure" acetone sold at Bunnings leaves a white waxy residue, also.

Sydney tap water doesn't do a bad job either.
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  #27  
Old 21-11-2016, 05:43 PM
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I used Isopropyl Alcohol. I believe the brand was Diggers. It said it contained 100% Isopropanol on the label which from my understanding should be fine. It may be as Don said above in that the alcohol has diluted whatever the original residue was and I've just spread it around the eyepiece. Another cleaning may be in order but I had enough fear doing the first one. I'm terrified of scratching the glass!
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  #28  
Old 22-11-2016, 10:22 AM
gaseous (Patrick)
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Hi James, I also used the Diggers brand alcohol on my eps over the weekend, using the cotton bud technique outlined above, and got the same sort of residue as you (although perhaps not as bad as yours!). I was surprised at the amount of residue also, as the ep wasn't particularly grotty to begin with. After numerous attempts with the cotton buds to clean it up, I had to resort to a gentle wipe with a microfibre cloth to get it sparkling again. Not sure if it's something in the liquid (which seems unlikely), or something left over in the cotton bud manufacturing process which the alcohol dissolves/spreads on contact.
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  #29  
Old 22-11-2016, 05:41 PM
75BC (Brendon)
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I may be mistaken but when I was looking for Isopropanol a while ago I saw the Diggers brand at Bunnings and I thought the label said it was only about 70% which would not be suitable.

I ended up getting some 99.8% from Jaycar Electronics.
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  #30  
Old 22-11-2016, 09:41 PM
gaseous (Patrick)
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I may be mistaken but when I was looking for Isopropanol a while ago I saw the Diggers brand at Bunnings and I thought the label said it was only about 70% which would not be suitable.

I ended up getting some 99.8% from Jaycar Electronics.
Yeah, possibly mistaken - I've got my bottle of Diggers here: 100% isopropanol. I (foolishly) tried Isocol a while ago, and later read that it's only 64% isopropanol. It leaves the same crappy residue as the good stuff though. Must be the cotton buds....
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  #31  
Old 23-11-2016, 06:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gaseous View Post
Yeah, possibly mistaken - I've got my bottle of Diggers here: 100% isopropanol. I (foolishly) tried Isocol a while ago, and later read that it's only 64% isopropanol. It leaves the same crappy residue as the good stuff though. Must be the cotton buds....
Just checked mine last night and it does say 100% Isopropanol as you said.
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  #32  
Old 24-11-2016, 11:53 AM
75BC (Brendon)
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Quite happily mistaken on that one. I know from experience how (and not just with astronomy equipment) using the wrong stuff can turn an easily cleaned blemish into a mess.

Funny thing was when I bought mine from Jaycar the guy asked me what I wanted it for and when I told him he tried to convince me not to use it saying IPA shouldn’t be used on glass.
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  #33  
Old 23-01-2017, 08:25 PM
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Never did get around to updating this thread. I cleaned the eyepiece again using Don's advice with better results. There is still a light film of something on the glass but it's a lot cleaner than it was before. It doesn't seem to affect viewing through the eyepiece but it still bugs me.
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  #34  
Old 23-01-2017, 10:34 PM
bigjoe (Joe)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gaseous View Post
Yeah, possibly mistaken - I've got my bottle of Diggers here: 100% isopropanol. I (foolishly) tried Isocol a while ago, and later read that it's only 64% isopropanol. It leaves the same crappy residue as the good stuff though. Must be the cotton buds....
Yep has to be 100%.
Made the same mistake myself once!
bigjoe
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  #35  
Old 08-02-2018, 07:23 PM
Wilso (Darren)
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I use the same Diggers 100 %isopropyl alcohol but have gone the other way by diluting it down by 10% rainwater.
Get fantastic results. No residue, crystal clear.
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  #36  
Old 19-03-2018, 01:49 AM
RobAB (Rob)
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Yes Darren

I take 99% isopropanol and dilute it with 50% distilled water. This is because I find that pure isopropanol evaporates too quickly. Before you get a chance to mop it up with a cotton bud, it evaporates, leaving the dissolved residue behind on the eyepiece.
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  #37  
Old 21-03-2018, 11:02 PM
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Stonius (Markus)
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Originally Posted by dreamstation View Post
Never did get around to updating this thread. I cleaned the eyepiece again using Don's advice with better results. There is still a light film of something on the glass but it's a lot cleaner than it was before. It doesn't seem to affect viewing through the eyepiece but it still bugs me.
There is something about coated optics that shows up the slightest bits of oil, far more than uncoated glass. So at the point at which you would call normal glass 'clean' and be content, coated optics still look like crap, even though the performance is the same optically at the same level of clean. I think it is something similar to the effect of thin layers of oil on water. I found this out when I had two different polariser filters on two different lenses that I was shooting for a skyshow. One was *so hard to keep clean, and it was the expensive Hoya one. It was because the coatings showed up the oils, whereas the other didn't but it made no difference to the image.

Cheers

Markus
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