Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Murry C. and his kids with a Dobstuff 13.1" F4.5.

Murray C. and his kids Samantha and Harrison  at the Texas Astronomical Society "dark site"

I like the observatory in the background too......


Monday, July 29, 2013

Charles and friends...

Charles, from La Habra, picks up his "new" 12" telescope tube.

Once I finished the 12" F4.9 for Joe G. I had the 12" metal tube left over. What to do?? I put an ad on Cloudy Nights offering the tube "free toa  good home". Someone just had to pick it up. Little I think that someone would actually come out to Palm Desert -- but Charles, Jennifer, Sharon and Jay stopped by for a nice get-together.

Friday, July 26, 2013

The Featherrouch Integrated focuser/Paracor system.

Clay T., from Hendersonville, N.C., opted for a beautiful Feathertouch focuser with integrated Paracor system. His telescope is an F4, so that fine piece of equipment will do a great job flattening the field-of-view.

The quality, fit and finish of the system is remarkable.

The focuser (L), mounting plate (C) and TeleVue Paracor (R).

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

And the march goes on...

21" Alt Bearings for John T's 13.1" F4.5 telescope.

Continuing the "head start" on John T's 13.1" telescope, here's the alt bearings and rocker box sides for his F4.5 telescope. I need to add the "lip" to the alt bearings. Otherwise, they're complete. These alt bearings are 21" in diameter.

You can see that the alt bearings and rocker box sides are part of the same panel of Baltic birch.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Still another project head-start...

OTA Rings for John T. in Jackson ,Michigan.
A set of OTA (optical tube assembly) rings for John T. in Jackson Michigan. I'm building a 13.1" (Coulter primary and secondary) for John with the Easy Transport (ETT) option. The mirror board, on the left, has the beginnings of a 6-point flotation mirror cell with aluminum and Baltic birch components. After building about a dozen of these telescopes, I found this to be a good combination for these mirrors.

Monday, July 22, 2013

From Mike in Forest Hills N.Y.

Mike and his 16" Lightbridge.
Forest Hills, N.Y.

Here's a nice picture of Mike D. in Forest Hills New York and his 16" Meade Lightbridge telescope on one of our Baltic birch rocker box upgrades.

Looks great. Thanks for the picture Mike...

Friday, July 19, 2013

Starting Something New...

A 13" (L) and 15" (R) telescope begin to take shape.
I'll be leaving town on 7/31 for a couple of weeks, so with about 11 days to go, I decided to get an early start on a couple of projects. When building a telescope, the first thing I do is to make the OTA rings. From there, the alt bearings and rocker box sides take shape.

This picture shows two of the next telescopes I have to make getting underway. One the left is a 13" strut telescope for Cary in Riverside, California. On the right a 15" F4 strut telescope for Clay in Hendersonville N.C.

While there's still quite a bit to do, having these components completed when I return to the shop will make the overall construction go a bit smoother.

Stay tuned.....

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Two scopes....

12" F4.9 (foreground) and 17.5" F4.5.

As I finished Joe's 12" telescope, and the 17.5" is awaiting pickup -- I was taken by the size difference. Only 5.5" difference in diameter -- but a HUGE difference in size of the telescope itself!

Joe's 12" F4.9 now complete...

Add caption
Here's the final result of the remake for Joe's 12" F4.9. This telescope started out as an Orion XT12 Intelliscope. The result is a significantly lighter telescope, easier to move, setup, use and store.

Included is a very nice Feathertouch focuser, Telrad finder and Sky Commander. As mentioned, Joe wanted a "deeper" mirror box -- this one is about twice as long as the standard model.

The mirror cell is the standard Orion 9-point flotation system modified for use on my mirror board. I've included a Baltic birch mirror cover as well (supplied with all remakes and complete telescopes).

The spider is a 4-vane curved-vane spider by Destiny.
Detail of the UTA with the Telrad in place. The counterweight, to
the left, compensates for different size/weight eyepieces.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Joe's 12" F4.5 near completion...

Joe's telescope sports a Feathertouch focuser and Telrad.

Now that the OTA is completed and the rocker box is coming together, I  put everything together to make sure the fit and balance are correct. The rocker box is nearly completed -- with the bottom and ground board still in production.

So far, the scope fits and balances perfectly. Under the stars, last night, all my eyepieces came to focus with plenty of in- and out-focus.

The Dew Shield is removable for ease of assembly and tear-down.

The rear of the telescope. The original Orion XT12 9-point mirror cell is used on the mirror board.

13.1" Telescope in the Field...

William and his 13.1" DobSTUFF telescope.

William from Novi Michigan attended a star party and was photographed by a friend. Here's a pic of William with the 13.1" telescope I built for him in March 2013. The star party was sponsored by the Ford Amateur Astronomy Club in Dearborn Michigan.

Note the sky. It looks pretty good to me.....

Monday, July 15, 2013

Joe's 12" F4.9 truss telescope...

12" F4.9 for Joe in Palos Verdes

The OTA for Joe's 12" F4.9 is complete and ready for an "under the stars" final test this evening. The dew shield is to the left of the picture. Joe's "extra long" mirror box makes for an interesting look.

Next up in the construction process is the rocker box...

Joe's 12" with dew shield installed.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A 12" F4.9 for Joe G. in
Palos Verdes, CA.
The final stage of building the OTA before finishing it completely. I calculate the length of the OTA and use "test struts" under the stars. If any adjustments have to be made -- I can move the struts up/down to bring all my eyepieces into focus.

Once complete, I finish the OTA and move on to finishing the rocker box. The scope is about 10-14 days from completion.

Ultimately, this scope will be a "truss" optical tube assembly.

Stay tuned.....

Friday, July 12, 2013

The completed upper tube assembly. Joe's telescope includes the
use of a beautiful Feathertouch focuser by Starlight Instruments.
Note the Telrad base and Destiny curved-vane spider.
Completed, now, is the mirror box and upper tube assembly for Joe G's 12" F4.9 truss telescope. Once the OTA is tested (with the adjustable struts for focus) and is completed, it doesn't take too long to complete the telescope.

Note that the mirror box is about twice the length of my usual design. Joe asked for this modification as a way to control stray light in an otherwise light-polluted backyard (I think)!!

More to follow....

The "mirror box" with mirror cover installed.
No dew shield.

The completed "mirror box" with dew shield in-place.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

U.P.S. did a good job of delivering the box undamaged!
Just received a 15" F4 for Clay T. in Hendersonville, N.C. Included is the matching 3.1" secondary. Both mirrors were just recoated by Spectrum Coatings with a 98% enhanced aluminum.


This mirror set is going to make a great telescope.

An example of "great packaging" for a primary
and secondary telescope mirrors.

3.1" secondary.

Spectrum Coatings does a great job.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

DobSTUFF Astronomical Telescopes is pleased to announce that we are now a dealer for Starlight Instruments and their Feathertouch precision focusers. These fine products are 2-inch 2-speed crayford focusers with 2.5" of travel and compression ring.

Feathertouch flat base.

Feathertouch 2" to 1.25" eyepiece adapter.

Monday, July 8, 2013

16" Lightbridge Rocker Box Upgrade.

Now complete and ready to package and ship is a 16" rocker box kit for Michael in Jupiter Florida. I build these for any telescope.

Check out this webpage for info on these.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

12" F4.9 Truss "remake".....

Coming together is a 12" F4.9 for Joe G. in Palos Verdes California. It's a "remake" from a solid tube Orion Intelliscope. Joe asked for a longer "mirror box" so you see a 20" version. Usually these are 12" on scopes like this. It'll be a truss telescope with a  Sky Commander, so it's going to look unique!!

The 9-point mirror cell is in place. There will be a black shield in the mirror box to protect the viewer from light and dew.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Projects Underway and Complete...

Just about complete is a 16"
"kit" for a Lightbridge rocker box upgrade for Michael S. in Jupiter, Florida (don't you just love the city name for an astronomer??)

As always, I put the project together with clamps to be sure of the fit.

(the blue tape indicates the "inside" of the component.)

Michael asked that the rocker box be lightened somewhat -- so I've put a hole in the front of the cross support. It retains the integrity of the construction while removing some of the weight.