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Celestron C9.25

 This is a customized Celestron C-9.25 OTA (Optical Tube Assembly) on a custom built mount.  The mount and the customizations to the scope were done by Keith Lawson.  The Celestron C-9.25 has a reputation for having excellent optics, especially for a Schmidt-Cassegrain.  Many people consider it to be one of the best mass produced optics out there, especially in this price range.  The biggest shortcoming to the Celestron offering has been the mount.  The mount on this scope is very heavy duty, which eliminates the shortcomings of the standard mount that this scope typically comes with.  

    The OTA has been modified with 2 custom cooling fans that circulate the air inside the sealed assembly through 2 aluminum tubes.  This dramatically decreases the time it takes to reach temperature equilibrium with the outside air.  Keith did an incredible job on all the machine work as you can see in the following  pictures. (click on the thumbnail for a bigger image).  Notice the wiring for the fans and the internal vents in the second shot.


    The mount is based around an LX-5 fork mount.  Keith removed the fork and converted it to a very heavy duty GEM.  The mount retains all the LX-5 electronics.  The illuminated reticule port has been converted to 12V for the cooling system (I've undid this modification). He used the fine adjustment from the fork for the fine control on the declination axis, as can be seen in the 4th picture.  The custom wedge is out of 3/4 inch plate aluminum.  This mount is rock solid,  and once again Keith did an awesome job on all the machine work. Note the control box for the cooling fans on the back of the wedge in the second picture.  I have added Lumicon DSC's (digital setting circles), and a new stainless steel counterweight shaft with more weight.  I also undid the modification that removed the illuminated reticule port.  I wired up the fan control box as a power distribution box.  That way everything is still powered neatly without drilling any extra holes.  The fans were running off the modified reticule port.   Here's a few pictures.  (thumbnails)

    Here's a couple of shots of the whole thing.

    Here the new 8x52mm finder with the old 6x30 for comparison.