Saturday, September 8, 2018

And a Note from Ron in Crafers, Australia . . .

Hi Dennis

Hope you are doing well!

I have been down with the flu but have finally completed the telescope, so I thought I would drop you a line and send you a photo. I was so impressed with the colour of the wood and the look of the silver struts against the mirror I have decided to keep things as they are (I had thought to stain the wood and spray the struts black but they look great as they are!).

The only real hitch I had was with the tube inserts but once I found a work around with the nail punch this all fell into place and I felt pretty proud of myself :) I feel I can literally say I put my blood, sweat and tears into this scope ha ha.
Ron and his 16" Telescope.

My first impression is that for a big scope it seems remarkably easy to handle with a nice smooth motion and a manageable weight. The whole structure feels rock solid to use. I can actually carry the OTA complete with accessories from the garage to the rocker box, so no need to recollimate every time etc because I have not taken the OTA apart. The mirror cell is superb and a love the heavy springs and big collimation knobs - it provides a really solid but fine collimation system. The rocker box is solid and beautiful and I found a nice little spot for the eyepiece tray as well. I don't think I will bother glueing the screws in - it all seems so solid as it is.

I struggled a little bit with the strings to guess what amount of tension is the right amount of tension. I found a small wrench to tighten the turn buckle a little extra, but I think I got carried away as eventually I noted the top half of the OTA was tilting a bit.... ha ha. So I quickly loosened that! What I was noticing was that there was a small amount of wander of the laser on the primary when moving the scope through altitude, and I was seeing if the stings could control it. Interestingly however, attaching the barlowed laser shows the primary centre spot remains well collimated on the face plate. That would be the main thing I am thinking. I have decided to leave it, as I know these things can drive you nuts unnecessarily because they don't affect your viewing.  You can forget to just enjoy your scope! 

The other thing I am getting used to is stiction - my other scope had a lazy susan and clutch system so you could control the amount of tension in alt / az movement. At high power the teflon bearings can be a bit frustrating to get used to because of overshoot! However, I have already made a few changes and things seem to be settling in. I imagine with time and experience things will become second nature. 

Thanks again Dennis
All the best

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