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Equipment Discussions >> Reflectors

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Howie Glatter
Vendor


Reged: 07/04/06

Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5685215 - 02/17/13 01:19 PM

One of the best hasn't been mentioned yet -
Michael Spooner


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dpwoos
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/18/06

Loc: United States
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Howie Glatter]
      #5685327 - 02/17/13 02:19 PM

And, as I said in another post, many clubs have one or more members that are top-notch mirror makers. There is a guy in our club that does outstanding work, and I would be (and am) as thrilled with one of his mirrors as I would be with anyone else's. I would always check in with these local mirror makers first.

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John Kuhl
sage


Reged: 11/10/05

Loc: SoCal
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: dpwoos]
      #5685370 - 02/17/13 02:52 PM


+1 on Mike Spooner, great mirrors.


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careysub
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 02/18/11

Loc: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Starman1]
      #5685377 - 02/17/13 02:53 PM

Quote:

Zambuto test:
http://www.astro-foren.de/showthread.php?9233-Carl-Zambuto-Newton





Quite impressive. For the whole mirror the RMS is 1/54.7 wave (Strehl 0.987). When the central zone is masked out (as in a Newtonian reflector usage) it is 1/66 wave (Strehl 0.991), and it is extremely smooth.

I'd pay Carl's prices for that mirror!

(Amusingly Google Translate thinks that "Glattesten" - smoothest (I think) - means "Smooth Estonians").

He does say that it is below the level of top manufacturers (if the translation is correct) but I think that we are now talking about mirrors that come at come multiple of Carl's prices for slight improvements that are beyond the ability of any amateur to detect.


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: careysub]
      #5685396 - 02/17/13 03:03 PM

No one has been making mirrors longer than Dan Joyce of Chicago. He will e ven take on students and let them make mirrors under his instruction.

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Jeff Morgan
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 09/28/03

Loc: Prescott, AZ
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5685413 - 02/17/13 03:36 PM

Quote:

No one has been making mirrors longer than Dan Joyce of Chicago. He will e ven take on students and let them make mirrors under his instruction.






I always hoped DJ would make a go at the commercial business, but he's just not motivated that way.


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azure1961p
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/17/09

Loc: USA
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: HunterofPhotons]
      #5685627 - 02/17/13 05:50 PM

I'd be curious to know what happened to George Clements - the PARKS OPTICAL optician at least circa 1990s. Got two essentially perfect mirrors from him. Never hear of him however.

Pete


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Peter Natscher
professor emeritus


Reged: 03/28/06

Loc: Central Coast California
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5685903 - 02/17/13 08:29 PM

Steve Kennedy. He's produces larger aperture mirrors and they are among the best.

Quote:

Everyone mentions Zambuto, Lockwood, royce and maurizio di sciullo for reflectors but no other names seem to surface. Another is out there - Peter Ceravolo in Canada comes to mind but little else . Anyone have any other names or comments?

Pete




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siriusandthepup
sage
*****

Reged: 02/14/06

Loc: Central Texas, USA
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5686086 - 02/17/13 10:19 PM

Quote:

I'd be curious to know what happened to George Clements - the PARKS OPTICAL optician at least circa 1990s. Got two essentially perfect mirrors from him. Never hear of him however.

Pete




+1

I would love to know about this guy also. I have one of his 8" f/6 Parks mirrors and it is exquisite! I wasn't able to track down much information for him at all.


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polaraligned
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/26/08

Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: HunterofPhotons]
      #5689732 - 02/19/13 09:09 PM

Quote:

Paul Jones at Star Instruments.

dan k.




Unless something has changed, as of a few years ago, Paul flat out was not doing parabolic mirrors anymore, and had not for a while. He had no interest in quoting me for a large mirror.


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ml96737
member
*****

Reged: 02/10/12

Loc: Big Island, Hawaii
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: polaraligned]
      #5690179 - 02/20/13 04:18 AM

There's quite a few people out there, both amateur and professional who can make practically perfect mirrors. Many of the names mentioned so far are very good, but even they have occasionally produced a "lemon" (Steve Kennedy made a big goof by undercorrecting a mirror by 1/2 wave or so, and John Hall of Pegasus produced several bad ones, and even tried to cover it up by false testing and threaten Mr. Rohr! http://www.astro-foren.de/showthread.php?10080-Pegasus-Newton-320-1500 )

Therefore, Carl Zambuto really stands above even this group of experts. AFAIK, he has never produced a "bad" mirror. What makes him so amazing is he has automated the figuring process by machine and can do it repeatedly and perfectly in a relatively short time. I think he produces around 50 or more "perfect" mirrors per year!


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Calypte
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 03/20/07

Loc: Anza, California
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: ml96737]
      #5690668 - 02/20/13 11:26 AM

Quote:

What makes him so amazing is he has automated the figuring process by machine and can do it repeatedly and perfectly in a relatively short time.



He's not the only one who figures mirrors this way.


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Norm Meyer
sage
*****

Reged: 02/08/09

Loc: Warren, ME 04864
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Calypte]
      #5690869 - 02/20/13 01:12 PM

What about Mark Harry he makes excellent small to
medium sized mirrors. I have one of his 8" F7.5 mirrors
and it is excellent.

Norm


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Mike B
Starstruck
*****

Reged: 04/06/05

Loc: shake, rattle, & roll, CA
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: ml96737]
      #5691269 - 02/20/13 04:28 PM

Quote:

...and John Hall of Pegasus produced several bad ones



I'm not a Pegasus "fan", and have never had one of his optics... i am unfamiliar with the backstory of the circumstances you've described. But i *do* note that the date on the forum notes you linked is over five years old.

These discussions of this mirror maker & that can sometimes turn ugly, and frequently sad stories get trotted out and re-aired. My concern here is that an event from five years ago, or ten years ago, etc. seems to NEVER be forgotten- the maker of a poor, or even less-good mirror seems to be forever haunted- even tho perhaps they have made dozens & dozens of perfectly fine optics, before, and since.

I would not wish such a standard be applied to myself or my work, which is no more or less "perfect" than anyone else's... nor would anyone wish to be pummeled unendingly with their past deviations from perfection.

Just sayin'... Be careful what allegations we toss about... be careful what tossed-about allegations we believe... and how they might (or might not) even be applicable to today's goals of acquiring a good scope.


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Jeff Morgan
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 09/28/03

Loc: Prescott, AZ
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Mike B]
      #5691302 - 02/20/13 04:42 PM

Quote:


These discussions of this mirror maker & that can sometimes turn ugly, and frequently sad stories get trotted out and re-aired. My concern here is that an event from five years ago, or ten years ago, etc. seems to NEVER be forgotten- the maker of a poor, or even less-good mirror seems to be forever haunted- even tho perhaps they have made dozens & dozens of perfectly fine optics, before, and since.




Yep, reputations take years to earn and minutes to lose.

In the case of the master optician, it's easy to imagine that every so often they could turn out a Dog.

What's unfathomable is that a small operation (often a one-man shop) could let such a Dog get out the door.

A moment of bad judgement and time/money pressures perhaps.


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John Kuhl
sage


Reged: 11/10/05

Loc: SoCal
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Jeff Morgan]
      #5691330 - 02/20/13 04:57 PM


There are great mirrors, but there is no such thing as a "perfect" mirror.

Best, John


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Mike Lockwood
Vendor, Lockwood Custom Optics
*****

Reged: 10/01/07

Loc: Usually in my optical shop
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Jeff Morgan]
      #5691413 - 02/20/13 05:45 PM

Quote:

Yep, reputations take years to earn and minutes to lose.
In the case of the master optician, it's easy to imagine that every so often they could turn out a Dog.
What's unfathomable is that a small operation (often a one-man shop) could let such a Dog get out the door.
A moment of bad judgement and time/money pressures perhaps.



I don't think it's unfathomable - it's a very real possibility in the of manufacturing items that are difficult to test and manufacture. Probability says that defects happen.

While I try to improve my testing methods every day, I take the attitude that it's only a matter of time before I make a mistake. I hope not to, but it's possible, and I acknowledge that.

Think about it - a typo made when entering a radius of curvature, or when writing down the measured ROC will certainly cause erroneous test results. How often might that happen? Once every 500 mirrors? Every 1000 mirrors? Probability says if you make enough mirrors, it will happen eventually.

It is important to note, though, that a defect once in a great while is much different and far less concerning than gross, frequent, or systematic errors, which, sadly, I have seen quite often in mirrors that come to me for testing.

However, it's how one handles a mistake that is important. If it happens, I won't react with denial or by abusing, belittling, or blaming the customer - I will check out the mirror and fix it if there is an issue. I will also explain what happened to the client and do my best to never make the same mistake again.


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Mike B
Starstruck
*****

Reged: 04/06/05

Loc: shake, rattle, & roll, CA
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Mike Lockwood]
      #5691437 - 02/20/13 06:03 PM

Quote:

A moment of bad judgement and time/money pressures perhaps.



We've gotta give them permission to be human. They go thru "stuff" just like everyone, and it can affect their work, and their QC:
1) A simple typo, like Mike said above,
2) Normal & seasonal illness, maybe combined with deadline & business pressures... "not hittin' on all six" as they say,
3) Communication busts with staff... by their very definition, a "bust" can exist primarily because no one realizes it exists, or else they'd correct it,
4) Long-term issues, like a worker (or the boss!) with ongoing personal issues, a family loss, alcoholism, impending divorce, etc.

A lot of this is how they handle the problems that result, and how persistent the "issues" might be. Some folks have their act together, more-so than others. I'd dare say someone with CZ's long-term reputation is not only a great optician, but a highly organized & disciplined individual. Yet it doesn't mean that he's the ONLY one making fine mirrors; Mike L & others have certainly shown what can be accomplished!

Also factoring into this is how *WE* handle the problems that have resulted. Which is why i hate to see one who is likely a decent enough mirror-maker get hammered over past QC issues. Especially LONG-past issues.


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Starman1
Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)
*****

Reged: 06/24/03

Loc: Los Angeles
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: Mike B]
      #5691538 - 02/20/13 06:54 PM

Mentioned so far:
Zambuto
Lockwood
Royce
di Sciullo
Ceravolo
Suchting
OMI
Waite
Raycraft
Wessling
Swayze
Ostahowski
Kennedy
Pegasus
MirroSphere
Fullum
Harry
Jones
Spooner
Joyce
Clements

Not mentioned yet:
Nova
Orion UK

It seems the list is well-populated, but would all of them be considered in a list of "Top Opticians"?
I had an Ostahowski mirror that was excellent, but my Zambuto is more excellent.
I've seen a nearly-perfect 16" GSO mirror that blew me away it was so good (as good as any mirror I've ever seen), but GSO wouldn't be in a list of "Top" mirrors because of variability from mirror to mirror.
Perhaps that is what differentiates the "top" makers from the "good" makers--an attention to perfection that results in every effort being superlative.


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Peter Natscher
professor emeritus


Reged: 03/28/06

Loc: Central Coast California
Re: Top Opticians in the US for reflectors new [Re: ml96737]
      #5691569 - 02/20/13 07:15 PM

I read recently on the Zambuto Groups that CZ is now producing 200+ mirrors a year.

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