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Features:

Dual-purpose liner thermally insulates the wall, and absorb scattered light.
Sizes to fit popular telescope brands and aluminum tubes sold by Hastings Pipe.
Economical solution compared to separate cork, glue, and flocking.
Less weight than separate cork and flocking.

The Protostar tube liner solves two traditional problems with metal telescope tubes. The first function is to thermally insulate the interior of the tube. Under clear night skies, the metal wall is several degrees cooler than the ambient air temperature. If the wall is not insulated, cool air will churn within the tube continuously affecting image quality. The liner insulates the interior of your telescope by creating an air gap between the liner and aluminum tube. Air is an excellent insulator, and is obviously lightweight.

The liner is also flocked on the inside wall to suppress stray light from reaching the focal plane, and eliminates the need to apply the light trap material separately. The liner is easy to install, and removable.

Important note: Hastings offers an optional inward fold on the ends of their tubes called "rolled ends". We don't recommend choosing this option with our liner. The ID reduction makes it difficult to insert the liner.

How the air-spaced tube liner works

Because of continuous heat loss and the high thermal conductivity of metals, the inside wall of the tube will drop several degrees below the ambient air temperature when exposed to a clear, night, sky. (This is due to radiative heat loss from the outside tube surface directly to outer space, and is the same phenomenon causes dew on the grass before sunrise.) The cooler, denser, air on the upper tube wall will spill downward throughout the night, adversely affecting image quality.

(click to enlarge)
Temperatures recorded from 8:30 PM to 3:30 AM on
a clear night showing the temperature of the upper inside wall.

The traditional fix for this problem is to line a metal tube with an insulating material like cork or cardboard. This works, but it is a time-consuming job and doesn't always look good. It also adds a surprising amount of weight when you add up the cork, adhesive, and layer of flocking or paint.

The air-spaced tube liner solves the thermal problem by exploiting the low thermal conductivity of air. The air gap created between the liner and aluminum wall is an effective thermal barrier, and the liner wall will track the ambient temperature within a few tenths of a degree all night long.

The air gap created by the liner can be exploited for other purposes. Electrical wiring and small screws and nuts can be hidden by the liner to eliminate light scatter, and for a cleaner appearance. The liner is not glued in place, so it can be removed if you need to do future work on the telescope. Shipped by Parcel Post. Made in the U.S.A.

Each kit includes:

tube liner

foam spacer material

instructions

installation guide rods

Detailed Product Images
(click to enlarge)

Download the installation instructions for flocked tube liners. (120 kB pdf)

The maximum liner length is 60 inches. Two pieces can be joined to make longer sections.

Part No.

Description

Price (US$)

GSO & Synta tube liners

GTL6

Tube liner for 6" GSO & Synta made Newtonians (Orion, Celestron, SkyWatcher, Zhumell, & Hardin)

$48.00

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GTL8

Tube liner for 8" GSO & Synta made Newtonians (Orion, Celestron, SkyWatcher, Zhumell, & Hardin)

$54.00

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GTL10

Tube liner for 10" GSO & Synta made Newtonians (Orion, Celestron, SkyWatcher, Zhumell, & Hardin)

$64.00

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Tube liners for Hastings aluminum tubes

(Diameters shown are for the actual tube size...not the mirror size.)

TL-8-XX

Tube liner for 8" OD Hastings aluminum tube; cut to 'XX' length (inches)

$1.00 per inch

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TL-10-XX

Tube liner for 10" OD Hastings aluminum tube; cut to 'XX' length (inches)

$1.25 per inch

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TL-12-XX

Tube liner for 12" OD Hastings aluminum tube; cut to 'XX' length (inches)

$1.50 per inch

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