Taking Care of Your Telescope

  • General storage and care
    • Make sure to keep everything covered or stored when not in use.
    • If you don’t want to break down your scope every night, or know that you will be using it for a few consecutive nights, a soft pillowcase over top will suffice to keep all dust off.
    • If you want you can also purchase an extremely soft camels hair brush to brush off any dirt.
    • Q-tips are also helpful to clean specific dirty spots.
    • Make sure to store your scope in a safe place and avoid excessive heat or cold and rogue animals/small children.
  • Cleaning Necessities and Routine
    • Make sure you are working in a clean and sterile environment, never outside.
    • You should prepare a cleaning bag that includes Q-tips, a lens cloth, or cotton balls in a plastic bag or other container to keep all dust and dirt off them.
    • Always use a blower bulb to clean any dirt off your scope:
      • Never blow on it or you can put tiny moisture droplets on lens that are also hard to clean.
      • Never brush dirt off with your fingers or towels because you can scratch lenses.
      • Never use any kind of cleaning detergents.
      • You should only use a combination of alcohol and distilled water.
    • If you must wipe with a towel, because you have used the above solution, use the inside of a soft diaper or a lens cloth.
  • Cleaning the Lens
    • First, start by using a blower bulb to blow off any solid material from the lens surface.  If there are particles that cannot be blown off, then you can use your brush using upward strokes away from the surface of the lens.
    • Moisten your Q-tip with a mix of 75% alcohol and 25% distilled water.  Use a slow, circular motion starting from the center and move outward.  You may need to do this a couple of times to get all the residue off completely.
  • Setting up and Breaking down your telescope.
    • Allow your scope about 30 minutes to adjust to outdoor temperatures.  The lenses will expand and contract depending on the temperatures.
    • Because you will most often be setting up your scope in the dark, it is very important to use an LED light.  Your eyes also need time to adjust to the dark and regular light causes your
    • Once you bring your scope inside it is a good idea to allow some time, even overnight so that all moisture can evaporate properly.
  • Basic Rules
    • NEVER look at the sun with your telescope unless you have the proper solar lens.
    • Only use appropriate cloths when cleaning the lenses, never your fingers.
    • Allow your scope time to adjust to the outdoors when you take it outside.
      • Your glass lenses will expand and contract depending on the temperature difference the outdoors and indoors.  This is more of a problem during the colder winter months.
    • Allow your scope time to “defrost” once you bring it back inside.
      • Often times you will find condensation (drops of water) on your lenses and occasionally on the outside of your scope.  Allowing this to evaporate on it’s own is the best thing to do.  Don’t try and wipe this off, it will smear and often scratch the lenses.
    • The worst thing you can do is not use your scope.  Use common sense and the tips I have give you and you will have a lot of fun.
    • If you have the time and patience, try sketching what you see.  The best and most renowned astronomers always drew their observations.
    • Always refer back to your owner’s manual for the most basic of questions.  There is usually a lot of information there that will be easy to find.

    Enjoy the pages I have included here and please purchase a planisphere, it will be of great assistance to you in the future.

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