Jump to content

  •  

CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Photo

Bob Kirschenmann

  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 kcolter

kcolter

    Messenger

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 461
  • Joined: 04 Jun 2003
  • Loc: Missouri, USA

Posted 28 February 2024 - 12:23 AM

Bob Kirschenmann, of Etlah, Missouri, an extraordinary machinist/astronomer passed away on Feb 20, 2024 from a glioblastoma multiforme at age 81.  Bob built splendid mirror cells, telescopes, and friendships. I was one of many beginners that he patiently taught where to find celestial objects, how to collimate, how to get a drive system to work, etc.   He made the mirror cell that is in my 20 inch Starmaster.  I will treasure my custom made 10 inch travel scope that Bob crafted for me. Many of you observe with scopes that Bob made mirror cells for.  We attended WSP, Okie Tex, and the Texas Star Party.  I’ll always remember the infamous “Soakie Tex” that was the soggiest astronomy gathering that we attended.  He was astonished when a still wet behind the ears beginner he was educating (me) bought a 40 inch f5 Dobsonian.  He was there the night John Dobson showed up at that 40 inch scope, and he was there the night Heinrich Bohr, Niels Bohr’s grandson, showed up to observe through that scope as well.   When the seeing and the transparency are good enough to finally see the M87 jet convincingly in Missouri, I will feel his presence and his excitement.  Thanks, Bob, for so many things, but most of all thanks for being such a wonderful friend. 


  • Jon Isaacs, tim53, PrestonE and 17 others like this

#2 ShaulaB

ShaulaB

    Aurora

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,639
  • Joined: 11 Oct 2012
  • Loc: Missouri

Posted 28 February 2024 - 04:07 AM

It's sad when the great ones leave us.

 

Here is a picture from 1990 of Bob with a telescope he made during one of John Dobson's visits to the St. Louis metro area.

 

BKsolarscope.jpg


  • Jon Isaacs, Ljubo, Oregon-raybender and 5 others like this

#3 Mike Lockwood

Mike Lockwood

    Vendor, Lockwood Custom Optics

  • *****
  • Vendors
  • Posts: 2,349
  • Joined: 01 Oct 2007
  • Loc: Usually in my optical shop

Posted 28 February 2024 - 05:32 PM

Very sorry to hear this Kim.  I will miss him.  He introduced me to Okie-Tex and Rick Singmaster, and for that I am grateful.

 

I just did a deep dive into my photo archives and pulled out some stuff, too much to post here.  Most is from 2007-2008.  I'll try to pick some highlights.  Any idea where to send photos?  Can I share them with you somehow?  PM me if you want.

 

Many may not know that Bob made a lot of the Starmaster mirror cells and the gearboxes for their drive systems.


Edited by Mike Lockwood, 28 February 2024 - 05:55 PM.

  • kcolter, Jon Isaacs, Oregon-raybender and 2 others like this

#4 dmoran0

dmoran0

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: 21 Sep 2016

Posted 28 February 2024 - 11:54 PM

So sorry to hear.  He built the 8 inch F7 I take to all outreaches and ground the wonderful mirror.  Countless kids have seen superb views of the Moon, Saturn and Jupiter through that telescope.  

 

Debbie Moran


  • kcolter, Jim T, Dave O and 1 other like this

#5 Bob4BVM

Bob4BVM

    Skylab

  • *****
  • Posts: 4,433
  • Joined: 23 Mar 2015
  • Loc: W. Oregon

Posted 29 February 2024 - 01:44 AM

Sorry to hear this, we are losing so many of our talented and generous old timers.

Wouldn't it be nice to have a special ongoing 'In Memoriam' thread here at CN, where we could keep the memory alive of all these great contributors to our hobby ?


  • kcolter, Retsub, Dave O and 2 others like this

#6 Chucky

Chucky

    Vanguard

  • *****
  • Posts: 2,256
  • Joined: 16 Apr 2010

Posted 29 February 2024 - 11:56 AM

Did Bob make the nice primary mirror cell on my Starmaster Oak Classic 7?
  • kcolter and Dave O like this

#7 Mark Jones

Mark Jones

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 4
  • Joined: 11 Nov 2023

Posted 29 February 2024 - 07:29 PM

Here are a couple more Bob K photos along with John Dobson from 1990.

In the earlier post, I believe the telescope Bob is holding is a solar telescope.

Attached Thumbnails

  • BK  1.JPG
  • BK  2.JPG
  • BK and JD 2.JPG
  • BK and JD.JPG

  • Don H, Dave O and jerobe like this

#8 kcolter

kcolter

    Messenger

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 461
  • Joined: 04 Jun 2003
  • Loc: Missouri, USA

Posted 29 February 2024 - 10:57 PM

<p>Thanks for all the kind comments about Bob. I know his heart was warmed when scopes he made were used in outreach to the interested public, particularly to children. I think Bob made the mirror cells for all the Starmaster Oak classics. Mike, I remember meeting you at Bob&rsquo;s one evening when you were picking up a large mirror cell he made for one of your stunning mirrors. I think we might have been at either WSP or Okie-Tex one year when Bob was there. I certainly agree that it would be nice to have an ongoing &ldquo;in Memoriam&rdquo; thread.&nbsp;</p>
  • Dave O likes this

#9 kcolter

kcolter

    Messenger

  • *****
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 461
  • Joined: 04 Jun 2003
  • Loc: Missouri, USA

Posted 29 February 2024 - 11:01 PM

<p>Mark</p>
<p>&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;Thank you so much for posting the pictures of Bob. I seem to have posted a response to previous comments about the same time you posted. On my cell phone my response looked like it was posted on top of your pictures. I hope that isn&rsquo;t what everyone sees. Sorry if I inadvertently invaded your post.&nbsp;</p>
  • Dave O likes this


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Recent Topics






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics