Carry/Storage Cases & Covers for LX Scopes

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Subject: : Carrying Case for LX200     Top

From: Tony Mehle, Mahoning Valley Astronomical Society

> I just got a 10" LX200. I have saved all of the packing. On occasion,
> I expect that I will want to take the telescope a fair distance (over
> the mountains, where the skies are not cloudy all night), although I do
> not expect that I will want to take it on an airplane. Is there any
> point in buying a carrying case for it, since it is too big and heavy to
> carry like a suitcase anyway, or should I just put it back in the foam
> in the box when I want to take it a distance?--Mark de Regt

Mark--I am still using the deluxe Meade cardboard box in my 3rd year since getting my 12" LX200. I got a roll of clear contact paper and "laminated" all of the outside surfaces of the box, then reinforced the corners with clear weatherstripping tape, which I touch up as needed. I always use the box when driving to the observing site. This has held up thru dew filled nights and even some snowy ground contact, as I put the box back in the van after setting up to minimize environmental degradation.


Subject: LX200: Cabbage Cases Carrying Case for 8"  Top

From: Evan Zucker

I bought an 8" LX200 last month. After much research, I decided to have a custom carrying case built by Cabbage Cases <> in Columbus, OH. Total cost was $264.12, including $20.12 for UPS ground. It took 6 days (Friday till Thursday) from Columbus to San Diego.

The case arrived yesterday, and my wife (who bought me the telescope) and I are pleased with it. We decided not to glue the foam to the case because it appears to fit snugly. The case has built-in wheels, an extension handle and the top of the case lifts off via 4 latches and a handle on either side.

When I put the top on there is a slight gap -- perhaps 1/8 inch -- between the top and bottom, and so I press down on the top and close the latch. I was wondering whether compressing the foam in this manner is a good thing or a bad thing. Cabbage Cases says that's exactly what they were aiming for, and I'm inclined to agree with them that this provides a snug fit for the scope.

The only problem was when I opened the shipping carton. As I always do, I used scissors to cut through the sealing tape. Unfortunately, there was no gap or packing material between the top of the carton and the case, and so I gashed the top of the case. Naturally, I wasn't pleased about this, even though it's just a cosmetic gash.

I talked to Mike Hannah at Cabbage Cases about this, and he said nobody has complained about this problem in the past 15 years. I asked him how he thinks I was supposed to open the carton. He said I should have pulled the tape off. I don't think that's feasible. A better alternative is probably an Exacto knife where you can have the blade extend just slightly from the handle.
After I contacted CC a second time about this, they were very apologetic and offered to make up for it. They said customer service and word of mouth is very important to them.

I suggested that Cabbage Cases warn customers about this to make sure they don't do what I did. Since you've been forewarned, you shouldn't have a problem.

I recommend this case and Cabbage Cases. If you're interested in getting an estimate from them, be sure to ask for Mike Hannah and mention my name (Evan Zucker) and my Order No. 42645 so you can get the benefit of the work they already did on my case.


Subject: LX200: Carry Case for 10"  Top

From: Jeff Schotland

I placed my order for a an ATA Style case yesterday (10: LX200), I have
decided to go with the case from Atlas Case Company. The following information was provided in their quote:
"A fabricated ATA Case with your dimensions of 36"L x 23"W x 17.5"H, no foam, white exterior, removable 3" lid, recessed casters. 3/8 plywood & all recessed hardware cost would be $410.00. Shipping cost is $13.80 for RPS ground. Build time on this case would be two weeks from time of order."

I decided to go with the Atlas Case for the following reasons:

  1. Their quote (while not the most detailed) was for what I asked for. I received seven quotes, two quotes I received were for the wrong dimensions! Or contained options that I had not specified.
  2. 3/8" plywood construction, Yes this case will weigh more empty, but should withstand lots of shipping/travel. And should provide as a sturdy seat with appropriate cushions.
  3. SHIPPING CHARGES $13.80 for an object of oversize dimensions and a weight near 60 lbs. I can't think of any astronomy related product that I have purchased that has shipped for so little! I received quotes as high as $80.00.

Atlas Cases <>
Other quotes:
Harnel Cases <>
A&J Cases <>
Calzone Cases <>
Cabbage Cases <>
Star Cases <>


Subject: Custom Carry Cases  Top

From: Chad Reynolds

I was surfing the web and noticed a discussion on your website concerning carry cases. We offer custom case solutions for all types of applications, with a minimum order of one. If you have any questions concerning our company, please contact me or visit our website at: <> or 1-800-268-6000 x221


Subject: Carrying Cases Source In Europe

From: Jean-Luc Luczak

I have seen that the "maison of astonomie" in Paris seems to supply some cases for the OTA, equatorial table and tripod. They have a web site:
  <> where you could query a catalog and also send an email.


Subject: Modification to Military Computer Case     Top

From: John Hopper <>

Here are some comments base on my experience and that of a few others as well:

1. There are two versions of the 10" case, and possibly a couple additional variations on the exact configuration of mil foam in the cases. The foam variations don't matter for anyone doing it your way, as you removed it all. However, the bottom piece (your top piece) in most cases (pun intended) has a hard plastic accessory bin, complete with nylon lashing straps. I'm not sure how hard it would be to remove it, I presume that either your case was the version without this, or you'll provide the answer to that question! Note: all of the brand-new ($150) 10" cases have the interior accessory bin, while the used ($100) 10" ones are still available with or without it. None of the 8" ($90) ones have the interior bin, just two different foam configurations. Their weights of the two 10" versions are 45 and 52 pounds, but that's only due to differences in the amount of mil foam in them rather than the bin weight itself. Once the extra foam is removed to a level where you can compare apples to apples, the difference becomes only around 2 pounds. The bin is along the long side of the case, and in fact eliminates the need for extra foam in that direction.

2. The interior accessory bin wouldn't work very well upside down, as that would put its opening facing downward, sort of hard to load.

3. While using the larger top piece as the bottom is tempting, especially with those ridges looking like feet to keep the case off the ground, I generally don't recommend it to people for these reasons:

A. You'll note that trying to put the Meade foam all the way to the bottom of it, required trimming the length of the Meade foam due to the taper of the case which is much greater on that piece than on the shorter but more square real bottom. The same would be true right-side-up on the top, except that nobody leaves 4" of military foam in the bottom, therefore the top of the Meade foam doesn't have to go all the way into the most tapered part. And if you do want to trim it a little, it would be on the thinner Meade foam piece, rather than the big one.

B. When I first left a bunch of these cases outdoors in the rain, then opened them, I found out that if you have them right-side-up, then it's much less likely that you'll let any water into the case when opening a wet case...or if you have a case with a bad seal, bent rim, or whatever. Right-side-up water problems are rare even with a minor case problem, but upside down you had better make sure the case is still airtight and that you don't open it wet.

C. You really don't need to use the ridges as feet, as it's not getting wet anyway, and if you drag it on pavement, the wear gets spread across the whole bottom of the case rather than just the feet...unless you add wheels or drag them on the edge. Either way, they're pretty tough as you say, I've never heard of one wearing through from dragging. D. I think that part of the reason the handles are on the bottom, is so you're not holding the weight of the contents (scope, in this case) by relying upon the latches. Then again, the 12 latches are overkill and plenty strong, so you're right that it's OK to do so, from a practical standpoint.

4. Adding wheels, or anything else to the outside of the case, makes it beyond the size limit which UPS will ship (air or ground, doesn't matter) and the same is true of FedEx Ground. FedEx Air will still take it, but obviously that isn't cheap. So I recommend that any exterior mods be easily removable if you might want to ship the case at reasonable cost. Note: on the 8" cases, wheels would only move it from "Oversize 1" to "Oversize 2", but on the 10" you're already at the extreme limit of "Oversize 2".

5. Anyone wanting to use your method which removes all the mil foam, can get one of a limited number of foamless used 10" cases I have, for $60-$80 depending upon condition. These are cases which had been left open and wet at some point in their life, and I've had to rip out the moldy foam and pressure-wash them. Similarly, if anyone doesn't need latches on every side (e.g., for adding a hinge instead) or doesn't mind cleaning up rusty latches, removing near-unremovable labels, sanding off spray paint, or having various other minor/moderate flaws, I have other bargain cases of every description (and price!) available culled away from what I've been selling at the normal price, that could be made presentable with a little labor. For example, if someone wants to try sanding and painting a case with Meade-blue epoxy paint, you might as well take one that could use sanding and refinishing anyway, at a bargain. Or if you want to add a hinge to replace 3 latches, you might as well take one missing 3 latches, etc.

5. I'll have to try a hacksaw on the foam sometime. I've never cut the Meade foam, but I've cut a lot of the mil foam. I normally use a heavy serrated kitchen knife. Mildly serrated, not one with fine teeth, just a slightly wavy serrated edge. It works great, but when cutting slices of the mil foam, especially on the tough 8" case's version with a near-solid foam block 20x30 inches in cross section, the knife must actually be removed a few times to cool off!! It's real fun making two cuts meet exactly 10" deep inside the slice. Usually I just get it close, then hack at the remaining line down the middle, from the end.


Subject: Desert Storm Scope Covers --part 1 of 2    Top

From: Dave Schanz <>

I haven't seen this site mentioned yet in this thread but they do have something that appears to be similar to the Desert Storm cover that might suit your needs. I don't own one and have never seen one in person so I can't vouch for their quality.
  <> Note: should open a new browser window over this one.


Subject: Desert Storm Scope Covers --part 2 of 2

Editor's Note: also try: <>  and Nite I's Visual Astronomy Accessories,
<> Note: should open a new browser windows over this one.


Subject: Best Scope Cover in Humid Climate --part 1 of 5    Top

From: Mike Wyatt: As a follow up to the below request. I also live in Florida and have installed a pier on the south side of my home. I'm not allowed (homeowner's association) anything like a shed or even semi-permanent cover (box) to cover my pier and scope. What I'm trying to do is cover the scope pier with something like a Desert Storm cover, include a small light bulb to keep the inside temp above the dew temp and add a chemical dehumidifier inside and seal the cover at the lower pier tube above the ground with tight bungee cords wrapped around the cover and pier tube. I know I'll need to change the dehumidifier chemical often (plan on getting some of the "rechargeable" packs). I also plan on covering the scope with a plastic bag, then a plastic grill cover, then the Desert Storm type overall cover, just in case the Desert Storm cover leaks during our frequent rain showers here. Comments, experiences and general information regarding this "attempt" are requested.


Subject: Best Scope Cover in Humid Climate --part 2

From: John:I was wondering given the high humidity here in Florida if a Gortex cover, tailor made for the tube/dewshield assembly would have any benefits in stopping everything dripping after a couple of hours. I have a Kendrick system arriving in the week but this will obviously only keep the optics clear. Does anyone have any knowledge of blanketing the OTA in any fashion and its usefulness, if any.


Subject: Best Scope Cover in Humid Climate --part 3     Top

From: Tim Cantwell: I saw a great idea by a friend of mine that might help. He had two 33-gallon trash cans glued to gather at the openings. He cut the bottom out of one can which allowed them to be placed over the pier, wedge and some electronics which were permanently attached to the pier. Under the trash cans he had a small 25-watt, red light bulb to control humidity

One modification he made after time was to cut a small hole in the trash can. This hole was in the area of the light bulb. The hole was covered with a piece of Plexiglas to allow a visual indication of the red light from his back window to insure it was working.

Perhaps in your area you might want to add some kind of covering (plastic, nylon, etc.) which is attached to the bottom of your pier, when the trash cams are in place they can be brought up and tied to the bottom of the trash cans. This may help with humidity and other critters found in south Florida.


Subject: Best Scope Cover in Humid Climate --part 4

From: Dave Schanz <>: I have my 10" LX200 permanently mounted on my wedge and pier here in Michigan. I leave it outside all the time. I went to the local shop that makes covers for boats and had them make me a waterproof canvas cover. It's cylindrical shaped, has a long zipper on one side with a Velcro flap over the zipper and a draw string sewn into the bottom so I can draw it tight. It's about 72" long and 3' in diameter and it ran me about $130. It works great, stays flexible in our cold winter months and is impervious to the weather. I keep a 40 W bulb in a safety light on a timer stuck in the base of the wedge to ward off the humidity. Although it has never appeared to be necessary, I cover the scope first with a cheap plastic deck chair cover, then cover it all with the canvas cover. I keep the canvas cover snugged up against the concrete pier with a bungee cord. It all works like a charm for me here in MI.


Subject: Best Scope Cover in Humid Climate --part 5 of 5    Top

From: Clark Williams <>: I don't want to violate any of the advertising taboos on MAPUG, so first I have to say that I own a company that makes telescope covers, now everyone will know that they don't have to read any further if they don't want to.

There are several different kinds of covers out there, but if you are interested in seeing our covers, pop over to our website. Nite I's Visual Astronomy Accessories,

You don't want to use Gore-Tex. The Gore-Tex people will also tell you the same thing. When I did my research on fabrics for our Nite's Capes one of the things I did was to look into Gore-Tex. Gore-Tex works because there is positive pressure on the inside and relatively negative pressure on the outside of the fabric. Now if you want to stick a light on the inside it might generate enough heat, but humans tend to give off about 2400 BTUs per hour. That is a lot of heat. And if the light ever fails, the waterproof nature of the Gore-Tex will no longer work. So you might look into other fabrics.


Subject: Black & Decker Wheel Toolbox as Carry Case for 10"

From: John Mahory <> Date: May 2004 

This came up on the LX10 group a couple days ago. Here's summary of a couple messages from a guy who found an alternative (note that the LX10 is an 8" SCT, so you'll have to check if your 10" LX200 will fit):

"I work in Home Depot, and while walking around the store one night, I stumbled upon this AWESOME tool box! It's got HUGE rubber wheels, AND a metal telescopic handle. This box is DEFINETELY large enough for the LX-10 (with plenty of room for accessories!)

And the best part is, it's only $54.00!!!! However, you'll have to add your own lining / foam / whatever.

And, the fact that it's got large enough wheels (to easily roll over damn near any terrain), and a telescopic handle..... This link is EXACTLY what the toolbox looks like(see below), only the one we sell, is a bit larger in size. But, this will give you an EXACT idea of what it looks like. <"> or click on Speciality Toolboxes.

B&D Too Box


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