Not that I NEED to make a decision about this scope soon, but I am thinking, in the back of my mind, about the projects I have on the various back burners, and which I should push to the front, once I've made a decision about this one.
First, about this one: whether I refigure the secondary or not, this thing was clearly intended for wide field imaging, but SCTs don't have flat, coma-free fields over large areas (particularly a problem with detectors with small pixels). Does anybody make an SCT focal reducer/field flattener that's ~3" (or more) in clear aperture? Because I'm not sure I'm up to aspherizing the primary and secondary (though the secondary is probably already somewhat hyperbolic, per stock SCT designs). If not, and/or if I elect not to do any work on these optics and just put it together and use it, it's certainly not a bad C-14 considering the investment so far.
As for back-burner things I need to do. Obvious first:
1. Make a cell for the 8" f/8 mirror I refigured and have coated (still in shipping box from L&L), and make a new counterweight for the Schafer 8". Shouldn't take me more than a few hours to complete that scope.
2. Take the MK63 apart again and get the primary that I refigured sent out for coating, put it together and use it. Pretty straightforward.
3. Finish the elliptical secondary for my 6" f/30 Gregorian. I finished the primary at the last Delmarva mirror class a few years back. Just need to finish coring it and get it coated. The secondary is elliptical, but I need to dpac the whole system to finialize it. Then get it coated with the primary.
4. I have 2 DX8s. I was inspired by Dave's description of his polishing the flat side into a smooth flat surface, and tweaking the ashperic surface to remove the stig. I need to test mine and pick which one to rework. The most complete has nice mechanicals, and does decently on planets up to about 150x, falling apart above that. It'd be fun to make that into a good planetary scope, and would give me experience with SCT correctors.
5. The holy grail: fine grind, polish, and figure the corrector for the 16" Mak Cass optics I bought several years ago. I have the mount for it in my observatory at Cosmic Acres (Tak EM-500 with Sitech goto).
So, whadaya think? Like I said before, if I'm going to refigure anything of the C-14, I'm going to build an oil flat test jig that allows me to swap the secondary in and out while testing so that I can quickly see what I've accomplished. it'll also be the first time I've worked a convex mirror, so there's that. But if there's a large aperture FF/FR or COTS lenses therefore that I can use to make it into a decent wide-field imager without refiguring stuff, I'd like to know about that, too.