Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Cleaning an 8" mirror -- photos from Greg in Pinellas Park, Florida. . .

Greg, from Pinellas Park, Florida, sent me these photos
of his telescope and cleaning the primary mirror.
This telescope is an 8" F6 with ETT option.

Removing the mirror is easy with a serrated
cutting knife. Just "cut through the silicone"
using a "sawing motion".

"FIRST: let the water run over the surface to remove
loose dirt and dust. A can of "air" works well, too.

I like to use slightly warm water and any dish washing liquid.
With plenty of liquid soap, lightly clean the surface
using circular motion. Coatings are tough, but be gentle!!
I sometimes use cotton balls on the surface as well.

Just rinse the surface with water. I don't worry about using
distilled water -- the water isn't on the surface long enough
to make any difference.

Stand the mirror on edge to let the water drain. I use the corner of a paper
towel to remove any drop that stay on the surface.

In my telescopes, many of the mirrors are held in place with silicone.
Don't forget some sort of "spacer" so the silicone will cure. I like
to use 1/4" "bumperons" -- but cardboard from a shoe-box works well.

Thanks for the photos Gary.

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