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Building my first scope.

ATM beginner
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#1 Space Ant

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Posted 07 December 2019 - 04:54 PM

I first got into visual astronomy almost a year ago by now. I started astrophotography six months ago by now. I want to try out ATM now. Augustus has already sent me a 6" mirror to grind, I just need to get the other materials. The main problem is that I still, as with when I started visual and ap, have no idea what I'm doing. My plan is to make a 6" f/5 scope, and I'll probably start work on it over winter break. The one thing that still isn't entirely clear to me is the grinding tool. I have heard about tile tools, but am not sure how to make/get one. So, I will have a lot of dumb questions and will need to do a lot more research. 


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#2 DJNoecker

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 08:29 AM

Pick up a book called "The standard handbook for telescope making", written by Neal E Howard. It is an excellent book for starters. It is what got me going back in 1973. You cant go wrong here.

 

Dan



#3 Todd N

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 09:14 AM

Willmann-Bell sells such books:

 

https://www.willbell.com/tm/index.htm

 

And supplies:

 

https://www.willbell...TM_Supplies.htm


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#4 Space Ant

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 12:19 PM

I'll take a look at some of those books and/or online tutorials, I already found this website http://firsthanddisc...nch-mirror.html to buy a kit from, all I know is that this has the materials I need besides the grinding tool itself. 



#5 Pinbout

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 02:15 PM

https://www.youtube....h?v=2zLIiuT1G-I

 

here I'm casting a tool ontop of a flat blank. but its a subdia tool cause I'm using on a machine

 

I like to epoxy pennies on the face to grind... I used glass tiles but they seem soft and generating the curve blows right thru them.

 

but if your starting flat you should use a ring tool

 

a 5in glass hole saw would work great to get you close to your sag... then you'd cast the tool like above.

 

 

here I'm starting a 8in blank.... you can do similar by hand... just take long but the ring tool is great when starting flat.

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=ZcPktFY92Cc


Edited by Pinbout, 08 December 2019 - 02:21 PM.

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#6 Space Ant

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 06:05 PM

https://www.youtube....h?v=2zLIiuT1G-I

 

here I'm casting a tool ontop of a flat blank. but its a subdia tool cause I'm using on a machine

 

I like to epoxy pennies on the face to grind... I used glass tiles but they seem soft and generating the curve blows right thru them.

 

but if your starting flat you should use a ring tool

 

a 5in glass hole saw would work great to get you close to your sag... then you'd cast the tool like above.

 

 

here I'm starting a 8in blank.... you can do similar by hand... just take long but the ring tool is great when starting flat.

 

https://www.youtube....h?v=ZcPktFY92Cc

The mirror I'm starting with, if I remember correctly, is already ground to f/8. The problem is I want to get it to f/5. I'm not sure if I should build a machine, or do it by hand, likely going to do by hand. Another thing I hadn't considered, in the second video you linked there is a very... loud sound of grinding glass (I presume that's what it is). How loud is this sound if I do it manually? 



#7 Pinbout

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Posted 08 December 2019 - 08:46 PM

Pennies are great to take an f8 to f5

 

the 2nd vid is loud cause the cup/ ring tool amplified the acoustics.

 

by hand won’t be as loud. Wouldn’t do it while the baby is sleeping though. 


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#8 Augustus

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Posted 09 December 2019 - 11:07 AM

Do hogging up to #220 outside if noise/mess are a big concern. Superfine SiC and AlO3 as well as polishing are very quiet and not messy



#9 Space Ant

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Posted 11 December 2019 - 09:39 PM

Do hogging up to #220 outside if noise/mess are a big concern. Superfine SiC and AlO3 as well as polishing are very quiet and not messy

Good to keep in mind. Also, I was thinking to use this scope as a more portable option than my 10" f/4.7, how portable could I make this, with regards to the structure? 



#10 Dale Eason

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 12:26 AM

Good to keep in mind. Also, I was thinking to use this scope as a more portable option than my 10" f/4.7, how portable could I make this, with regards to the structure? 

That is a very open ended question.  What do you mean by portable?  I find my 16 F5 at about 35 lbs very portable  when not assembled and I take it to star parties 100's of miles away.  It does not fit an an airplane easily and I will never try. When apart it fits in my car.  I don't carry it easily to different parts of the yard.  But I have.

 

My 10 inch F3 I designed to be what we like to call a grab and go which my 16 F5 is definitely not.  I can pick it up and move it with little effort in the yard.  It takes two trips from house to yard to get the stand and the scope outside.    Because I pack so much stuff into my car even my 10F3 tube comes apart for flatter transport to far away places.

 

Here is a video of me putting it back together.  Posted to give you ideas about how to make larger scopes portable. https://www.youtube....h?v=5DKFI8Oiou4

 

The 10F3 was inspired by one of Mel Bartels scopes.

 

Dale



#11 Space Ant

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Posted 12 December 2019 - 04:44 PM

That is a very open ended question.  What do you mean by portable?  I find my 16 F5 at about 35 lbs very portable  when not assembled and I take it to star parties 100's of miles away.  It does not fit an an airplane easily and I will never try. When apart it fits in my car.  I don't carry it easily to different parts of the yard.  But I have.

 

My 10 inch F3 I designed to be what we like to call a grab and go which my 16 F5 is definitely not.  I can pick it up and move it with little effort in the yard.  It takes two trips from house to yard to get the stand and the scope outside.    Because I pack so much stuff into my car even my 10F3 tube comes apart for flatter transport to far away places.

 

Here is a video of me putting it back together.  Posted to give you ideas about how to make larger scopes portable. https://www.youtube....h?v=5DKFI8Oiou4

 

The 10F3 was inspired by one of Mel Bartels scopes.

 

Dale

By more portable I meant mainly something like a grab and go, as you said. Something that I can easily take on some long trip if there isn't space in the car for the dob, which we already have to pack everything around anyway. So basically a scope that I can travel with much more easily, and also take to events much more easily. 

edit: great choice of music in that video! I would prefer a shorter setup time, but if that's the best I can do, I'll do it. 


Edited by Space Ant, 12 December 2019 - 04:46 PM.



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