Thursday, April 19, 2018

Monday, April 16, 2018

A 12" Kit for Scott in Aldinga, Australia....

The rear of Scott's 6-point flotation cell. The larger "vent hole" helps
when cooling the mirror for a nights observing session.
The 6-point flotation mirror cell for Scogtt's 12.5" F5 string-strut
telescope. These cells are designed and optimized with Plop.
A kit for Scott is just about complete. Here is the "top ring" with Moonlite
2-speed 2" focuser and 3-vane curved-vane spider.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

An 18-point Mirror Cell . . .

The rear of the 18-point cell for a 17.5" mirror. The large ventilation hole will
help when cooling the mirror is needed.

The "back plate" is 20" x 20" x 3/4" thick Baltic birch.

The placement of the "18-points" is designed and optimized with Plop and
will provide plenty of support for the 1 5/8" thick mirror.
An 18-point flotation mirror cell for Richard in Calhoun, Louisiana.
The cell is designed and optimized with Plop. The mirror is a
17.5" F4.5 by Coulter.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A 9-Point Cell for Robert in Vienna, Virginia...

A 9-point flotation mirror cell for Robert and his 13.1" Coulter
primary mirror. The cells are designed and optimized with Plop.

The round aluminum back-plate is perfect for any "round tube" installation.

Monday, April 9, 2018

A Note from Phil . . .

Good evening Dennis,

I just assembled the scope. She’s a thing of beauty. Wow am I pleased.  The craftsmanship is amazing and my wife Barb gives two thumbs up as well (that’s rare with scopes so a big positive). My grandsons think it’s the coolest looking scope they have seen.  Later in the year you’ll be getting the parts from a 16” LightBridge for another build.

Haven’t had chance to align things yet and Friday looks like we might have a clear sky.  The weather has been strange in the North East this year.  

If Friday cooperates I’ll get some pictures for your blog. If not the soonest the weather cooperates after that.

Thank you again for your excellent work. I’m one very happy camper and have cabin fever waiting to get out under clears skies.

All the best Cheers


Sunday, April 8, 2018

Rick and his 12" Kit Assembly ...

A note from Rick and his kit assembly:

Good morning Dennis. I'm attaching a few pic's. Pick out what you want to post on your blog. The adjustable struts are 1 1/4" pvc with 1" pvc inside with clamps to hold adjustment. Assembly was very straight forward. I am fortunate to have a fellow astronomer come over and help with  getting the strut tubes length figured out. I'm very happy with the optics. I highly recommend Dobstuff. 

Friday, April 6, 2018

Three Trusses, Two Struts and Clamps....

Clamps of all sorts for the 3 truss and 2 strut telescopes under
construction. Three of these are kits and will ship pretty soon!!

Lotsa "saw- and router-dust"

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

12" and 12.5" Altitude Bearings...

Altitude bearings and rocker box sides for the 12" and 12.5" kit under
construction. These are 20" in diameter, just right for the telescope size.

Monday, April 2, 2018

A Truss and Strut Telescopes ...

Under construction are 2 string-strut telescope, 12" and
12.5" in size. Here, the OTA rings and mirror board are just
about completed.
April 2, '18

And, under construction are 3 truss telescopes, 12.5" to 13.1" in 
size. These OTA components are the first step toward their 
completion. April 2, '18

Saturday, March 31, 2018

A Couple of Trusses -- A Couple of Struts...

I currently have a couple of truss and a couple of strut telescopes underway.
They'are all about the same size, so I'm able to "cut wood" for them
all at the same time!! This photo shows the OTA rings for the truss
telescopes in the very early stages.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Phillip's 8" F7 Completed . . .

Every time I build one of these telescopes, I want to keep it. This one is a beauty -- with excellent optics and motions. The finished product includes a curved-vane spider, a manual or motor driven focuser and secondary dew heater. A complete Sky Commander system rounds out the beautiful features of this telescope.

Note the  Easy Transport Telescope option.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Philip's 8" F7 -- Just About Completed...

An 8" telescope, especially one that's a "little longer" needs to be stable.
Here, the ground board is outside the center of balance for stability.

The azimuth motion is great. 

Dave's 17.5" -- First Light ...


Got the big dob out to the park about 7 and had it set up and collimated in 20 min.  With practice that should be under 15 min.   I’m a total klutz, so that’s a credit to your truss design, not to my assembly skills.  Took another 5 minutes to dial in the 50mm finder. 

In the bright twilight my first target was Venus.  At -3.9 Venus was painfully bright, like an oncoming motorcycle with the Hi Beam on.  The scope resolved the nearly round disk sharply at 100x, using a 20mm TeleVue Nagler.

Sirius appeared, and high above it the slightly gibbous 1st qtr moon.  I needed my new Costco 2 step kitchen stool to get to the eyepiece but it was well worth it.  The moon was jaw-dropping.  Wow!  The Lunar highlands around Tycho and Clavius, near the terminator, were razor sharp with rills, small craters and details

I’ve never seen before in any scope I’ve owned.  Just stunning.  I couldn’t stop looking.  Focus tweaks and eyepiece changes damped down quickly.  The scope moved smoothly in all directions and has just the right ‘sticktion’ for my heavy 2” eyepieces.  Never needed to adjust the weights.

Just as it was getting dark enough to consider a few brighter deep sky objects the clouds rolled in so I reluctantly packed up and rolled out.  Far too short a session but long enough to demonstrate that the optics are just fine, and the design and build is excellent.  Can’t wait for a clear sky and new moon!


Saturday, March 24, 2018

A Note from Dave and his 17.5" Truss . . .


Impressive sight against an 8 ft ceiling, but very smooth and stable in both Altitude and Azimuth. 

Big but quite manageable when broken down.  The ball joints make truss assembly a breeze!

In fact, the entire assembly was quick even without a manual thanks to the great photos from the blog.  They answered every question.

Denks and mono eyepieces all working.  Collimation was quick and easy.  Just waiting for dark skies!

Philip's 8" F7 on its incomplete rocker box. I need
to finish the bottom and add the Sky Commander.

Some detail of the mirror box, altitude bearings and rocker box.

Note the red dot finder and secondary dew heater on the top ring.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

More on Philip's 8" F7....

Philip's 8' F7 is a "bit" longer than the usual
4.5 -- hence the slightly higher rocker box sides.
The OTA (optical tube assembly) is pretty
much complete with the addition of the
altitude bearings.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Philip's 8" F7+ OTA

Philip's 8" with Easy Transport Telescope option. 
Philip supplied his mirror cell for the mirror board.
I make a custom mirror cover for all the telescopes I build.
The detail of Philip's motorized focuser and 3-vane
curved-vane spider. A Kendrick dew heater is included.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Phillips' 8" an Interesting Fix ....

I initially mounted Phillips spider on "top" of the top ring only to find
the secondary mirror was unable to come directly under the focuser.
I need "more length" along the optical axis.

I remounted the spider "under" the ring and voila!!  I was able to
bring the secondary holder and focuser into alignment.

(note the red laser collimator dot)

One issue was the placement of the spider vane. A "fix" took
care of that issue. Looking and working great!!

Friday, March 16, 2018

A Note from Howard and his 16" Telescope...

Howard sent along a nice photo and note:

Hi Dennis, I decided I needed some wheels on this 16"
 to move it around observing sites easier. Seems to work well.

Wheels stay on although easy to remove if need be.
 I just used some electrical conduit for the handles
so they just slide in and out. I use hose clamps to
hold them in place so they don't slide out when I am
moving it and it is quick to remove them
with a screwdriver when I need to move it.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

More on Phillip's 8" F7.42 ...

The top ring for Philips 8" telescope. The ruler will give you
a sense of size and scale.

Altitude bearings and rocker box sides for Phillip's 8" strut telescope.

Dave's 17.5" F4.5 Truss Telescope Completed . . .

This 17.5" F4.5 truss telescope features a Destiny
Observatory grade 3-vane curved-vane spider, Moonlite
2-speed focuser and 6-point flotation mirror cell
designed and optimized with plop.

Note Dave's nice 8x50 finder and detail of the spider.

The all aluminum 6-point flotation mirror cell. Three
simple collimation thumb knobs it all it takes to
bring the telescope into perfect alignment.

A Denkmeier binoviewer rounds out Dave observing options.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

An 8" F7.42 for Phillip....

While I'm putting the finishing touches on Dave's 17.5" truss telescope,
I'm making some headway on Phillips 8" F6 strut with ETT.