Self-Centering Adapter (SCA)
The HoTech laser collimator separates itself from all other laser collimators with its innovative self-centering adapter technology (SCA). This mechanism allows precise and repeatable installation in all brands of 1.25" and 2" telescope focusers. All laser collimators in the current market have one fundamental problem, slop in the adapting mechanism between the laser collimator and the telescope focuser. This problem is clearly recognized and often discussed among astronomers but so far there has been no definite solution in the market.
No matter how tightly the tolerances machined on the laser collimator or the focuser, a small gap is required to allow installation of the laser collimator. Once the laser collimator is inserted, the required gap becomes a problem. A laser collimator is secured with one or more thumbscrews or unified compression ring. Both methods introduce a very critical issue, namely an off-axis installment that instantly destroys the precision of your collimation instrument along the entire optical axis.
Our Self-Centering Adapter cleverly eliminates the slop by linearly compressing the built-in rubber rings. By doing this, the diameter of the rings expands to compensate the gap. Because all rings evenly expand radially in diameter from the compression, this automatically centers the laser collimator in the focuser draw tube. The SCA adapter accommodates various brands of adapting focusers which have slightly different manufacturing inside diameters so our laser collimator will be precisely centered for each installment.
In summary, our SCA adapter serves three critical functions. First, its expansion rings accommodate almost all focuser's manufacturing tolerances. Second, it automatically centers the adapting laser. Third, it provides at least two evenly distributed circular contacts on the focuser's inner tube surface preventing the adapting laser from pivoting. Once the slop factor is taken away, you can quickly collimate your telescope in confidence to achieve perfect collimation every time.
Many laser collimator manufacturers give users the wrong impression, “big and heavy means rugged and stable.” Instead, HoTech engineers successfully cut the unnecessary weight on the laser collimator because we understand that additional weight on a telescope (especially open structure Newtonians) will create imbalance and structure sagging. In addition, the heavier the device is, the more inertia it will have during an impact from an accidental drop. In such an accident, the inertia force can cause more damage to the internal alignment mechanism because there is more energy required to dissipate from the impact. Therefore, the lightweight design on our laser collimator makes you gain reliable precision collimation. And of course our laser collimator uses aero-space grade lightweight aluminum material and CNC machined with the tightest tolerances, then sand blasted and anodized to protect from harsh environment. Nothing has been sacrificed while you get a long lasting state-of-the-art collimation instrument.