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A Classic Richard Berry 10 inch f/6 Dobsonian

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#1 clamchip

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 08:16 PM

I knew I'd seen my recently purchased telescope somewhere and I found it in Richard Berry's 1985 book.

A little on Richard Berry,

https://www.24-7pres...arquis-whos-who

Pretty cool scope I found on Facebook a few miles from my house.

Her hubbie has Alzheimer's and is no longer interested in astronomy. I offered my help, maybe a smaller scope but

she said no that part of his life is over.

I have some photos of his telescope, he built it pretty much to Mr. Berry's published plans.

I'd love to know who made the mirror but I don't want to release it from the cell it's siliconed in place as Mr. Berry instructed. She said

it came from a commercial source but the name escapes her.

It's in kinda ruff condition, but I feel obligated to restore the scope, she wanted it to go to a good home.

So that is what I will do, preserve the patina and repair the scrapes and bruises.

Robert

 

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#2 clamchip

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 08:18 PM

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#3 John Rogers

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 08:54 PM

Richard Berry is a very accomplished amateur astronomer.  Using his Astronomical Image Processing book, I was able to decode an image from my ST-4 autoguider and display it on the computer screen 30 years ago.  There wasn't any real commercial software out there to do that at the time.  In fact, you had to develop your own grayscale palette for display.  For the really talented folks, his cookbook CCD camera was the way to go for affordable imaging.  There has got to be some of those out there waiting to be discovered.


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#4 jim kuhns

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 08:57 PM

I used "Build Your Own Telescope" in copying the above telescope but not exactly.
The 10"f/6 telscopics mirror and a 2.00" E&W quartz I am still using today.
The telescope was built in 1983. At that time I used a card board tube on a Dobson
mount. The mirror cell, spider, 2" focuser, and diagonal holder was bought from
Ken Novak.
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#5 ShaulaB

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 09:32 PM

We built our 10 inch f5 Dob using information from Richard Berry's book in 1990. It is still my favorite scope for grab-and-go relaxed observing. I wish more people would get involved in ATM. It is really a pleasure to go through the process and enjoy the results.

 

I have loaned the book to others over the years. Most of the time, I got it back. Had to re-buy it once, but it was certainly worth it.


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#6 clamchip

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 10:22 PM

I can look at the appendix in Build Your Own Telescope under mirror makers, basically what

he had to choose from and I come up with the following list for the primary:

 

Coulter Optical, no I don't think so with the polished sides and back, Coulter were pebble finish.

E&W optical. Specializing in diagonal mirrors. No, diagonals only.

Enterprise Optics. ? maybe.

Meade Instruments Corp. could be? but they had a blanched back.

Parks Telescope Co. ?

Summit Instruments ?

Telescopics?

 

The odd thing is the mirror is polished sides and back, not ground, polished.

It makes me think Japanese origin, Optica B/C I thought but I don't think so.

 

Robert


Edited by clamchip, 23 July 2020 - 11:17 PM.

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#7 clamchip

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 10:43 PM

A picture of the mirror cell.

Push-pull screws to collimate.

The mirror is siliconed to the outside plywood disk.

The tube is closed, no airflow.

 

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#8 TOMDEY

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Posted 23 July 2020 - 10:51 PM

Congratulations, Richard!

 

I met Richard at Rick Albrecht's house, back around then... and we (of course!) talked astronomy and telescopes. We were with the Rochester club... pretty close to Richard's old stomping grounds in Toronto. I contributed some material to his subsequent book, The Dobsonian Telescope. His AIP book is most certainly the definitive classic!    Tom

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#9 RalphMeisterTigerMan

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 08:39 AM

Back in 1986 I joined the Astronomy Book Club advertised in Astronomy Magazine. One of the books that was part of the monthly package was Richard Berry's "Build your own Telescope". I had been into amateur Astronomy since I was 8 years old. In 1983, I was attending a Technical College in downtown Vancouver. On the ground floor were several kiosks as well as the escalator going downto the Seabus which you could take across Burrard Inlet to North Vancouver.

 

One of the Kiosks was a place called Franks for the Memories which was a Coffee and Donut special were $1.25. On the other side of the main foyer was a small Kiosk which sold Cigaretts, gum, etc. The place also had a magazine rack. I noticed that one of the magazines was Astronomy Magazine. So I started to purchase one. After that I bought one each month. Three months later, I was married, working a pretty good job and living in an appartment with my new Wife. I had a monthly subscription to Astronomy Magazine and that's were I saw the monthly bookclub. I just had to join!

 

So I had Build your own Telescope was after that went completely nuts, sort-of like I am now...only different. Books and Magazines and visiting the local Telescope shop as well as Comet Halley were all instrumental in me getting into Amateur Astronomy. And I have been "totally nuts" about Astronomy ever since.

 

So, thanks Richard Berry for "Build your own Telescope".

 

Clear skies!

RalphMeisterTigerMan


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#10 clamchip

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 09:50 AM

I'm going to give his collection of oculars a try.

This is it, his collection, 1 eyepiece and 3 barlows.

I have my own TeleVue 26mm smoothie, it probably sees more use

than most of my others.

I'm not much of a barlow fan.

Lets see what we have here for a set:

 

26mm

14mm (26mm and 1.8X barlow)

10mm (26mm and 2.5X barlow)

5mm   (26mm and 5X Powermate)

 

I wonder if and what advantages there are in creating a set like this

with barlows.

 

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Edited by clamchip, 24 July 2020 - 09:54 AM.

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#11 clamchip

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 09:59 AM

The focuser is a Ken Novak rapid traverse helical and is quite nice.

I think I would like to use a little Superlube synthetic grease on it and it

will really be nice.

 

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#12 clamchip

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 10:02 AM

The Astro Optical finder she thought may have belonged to his childhood scope.

 

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#13 tim53

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 12:07 PM

Is that a 2" Carle focuser?

 

Oops, you said Novak


Edited by tim53, 24 July 2020 - 12:11 PM.


#14 tim53

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 12:10 PM

A picture of the mirror cell.

Push-pull screws to collimate.

The mirror is siliconed to the outside plywood disk.

The tube is closed, no airflow.

 

attachicon.gifIMG_0034.jpg

Enterprise optics would be engraved on the side.



#15 clamchip

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 01:19 PM

Enterprise optics would be engraved on the side.

Nothing on the side of the mirror.

If I'm lucky something will be on the back.

Only about a 1/8" gap between the mirror and the plywood.

I don't want to cut the silicone.

I haven't had nice weather since I bought the scope.

Once I do some observing I'll have more info on the mirror.

 

Robert


Edited by clamchip, 24 July 2020 - 01:30 PM.


#16 wfj

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 01:54 PM

I have one of these as well - a 10" f/5.5. It got much better planetary views after I released the mirror from it's silicone and supported it with bubble wrap instead and edge supported it with a thin steel cable along the mirror's center of mass.

 

Also reduced the secondary size from 3.5" to 2.25", used a lower profile focuser, and kicked out the mirror a few inches for better cell ventilation.

 

Been comparing it to a Orion XTi-10". Somewhat complicated by Jupiter being a bit low in the trees, being in Sagittarius.

 

Mars it s bit better in the Orion, but they both don't due well when that jet stream's overhead.


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#17 Augustus

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Posted 24 July 2020 - 01:55 PM

I'm going to give his collection of oculars a try.

This is it, his collection, 1 eyepiece and 3 barlows.

I have my own TeleVue 26mm smoothie, it probably sees more use

than most of my others.

I'm not much of a barlow fan.

Lets see what we have here for a set:

 

26mm

14mm (26mm and 1.8X barlow)

10mm (26mm and 2.5X barlow)

5mm   (26mm and 5X Powermate)

 

I wonder if and what advantages there are in creating a set like this

with barlows.

 

attachicon.gifIMG_0035.jpg

Could stack the Barlows. IIRC they work linearly so the 2.5 + 1.8x would be 4.3x making for a 6mm, or 6.8x for 3.82mm 


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#18 clamchip

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Posted 25 July 2020 - 09:12 AM

Finally a chance to check out the new scope.

Problems lots of problems.

A strange 5th diffraction spike and very strong vane diffraction on Venus and Mars.

Upping the power helped but I think the vanes may not be equal 90 deg from each other.

I may cut the mirror loose from the cell after all a defocused star looks like a amoeba. 

The mount moves well and responds well to being nudged along even at high power.

 

Robert


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#19 clamchip

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Posted 25 July 2020 - 10:06 AM

I'm going to go through the scope and try again.

Right out of the starting gate the diagonal spider is not centered on axis and the holder is stuffed with

firm styro packing peanuts !

You should use cotton wad for this application and only enough to lightly keep in place.

 

Robert



#20 Augustus

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Posted 25 July 2020 - 10:39 AM

My guess would be the sillycone has distorted the mirror.
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#21 RalphMeisterTigerMan

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Posted 25 July 2020 - 06:39 PM

I must make a correction. In my thread I said "three months later", that should have been three YEARS later. Sorry for any confusion!

 

Clear skies!

RalphMeisterTigerMan


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#22 clamchip

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Posted 25 July 2020 - 07:57 PM

I greased the Ken Novak helical focuser with Superlube and its

better if left dry.

Originally the Spider was a Ken Novak and for some reason he

replaced it with a Astro Systems, and Astro Systems diagonal holder

and probably a Astro Systems diagonal. The diagonal has his last

name scribed on the back so it must have been a custom job.

 

I didn't find anything to explain the rogue 5th diffraction spike other

than a single spider web accross the diagonal, could this do that? I'll

find out in the morning.

 

I've been going out around 3:00am because Mars is placed well

for observing and bright and high. 

 

Robert


Edited by clamchip, 25 July 2020 - 08:03 PM.

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#23 clamchip

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 09:37 AM

The telescope is astigmatic, and is the reason for the 5th spike, it's a flair.

I have a feeling the seller noted the problem too and was trying to correct

it by replacing the whole diagonal mirror assembly.

I feel it is the siliconed down mirror.

Notice in this photo how badly distorted the cell is.

Robert

 

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#24 clamchip

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 03:27 PM

I modified Mr. Berry's classic design a little.

I need to see if I removed the astigmatism with a conventional mirror cell.

The original plywood/silicone cell needs to be remade, the old one is all warped

like a potato chip. It comes right off and I replaced it with a metal cell for now.

The primary has no maker's marks, only felt penned 61.5" on the back.

It looks very much like a Coulter mirror to me but Coulter advertised f/5.6 in the

10" size. I'm sure they did custom ratios too. 

Mr. Berry's book was written in 1985 and by that time I don't think Coulter was

making regular telescope optics, up to his eye balls with the Odyssey production.

I can look through some old Sky & Telescope and look at the Coulter ads.

Robert

 

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Edited by clamchip, 26 July 2020 - 03:38 PM.

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#25 Augustus

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 03:46 PM

I’d add the blue end ring back on for aesthetics and to prevent damage to the tube end
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