Taking Stock

I couldn't resist re-assembling the telescope at this stage and thinking it looked rather good with all the contrasting metals. Not very durable though and definitely not how the Reverend would have known it!

The position of the cradle as found when I was given the telescope was roughly mid way up the tube and straddled the centre joint, which had come apart.

Was the telescope designed to split in the middle for transport and convenience? It first seemed so.

On removing the paint and cleaning up it was clear that the middle joint had been originally soldered.

Comparison with the photograph in Ellison's book showed the cradle to be mounted much lower originally. Scaling off the photo I worked out where the cradle should have been. Moving the cradle to this position I found that the telescope was still not balanced about its trunnions and this has ramifications on the elevation adjustment mechanism that I must reconstruct.

Having removed the paint I found that the finder had at one time been mounted by just one central hole/screw at each bracket position. This led me to re-examine the original photo and discover that the photo was of the original configuration. I hope with more research to determine when the finder was changed and hopefully, why.

I had the mirrors stripped and recoated by Vacuum Coatings Ltd. This revealed a fair amount of scratches, especially to the flat, but the primary was assessed as being of very good quality.

Brian turned up an adapter so that my laser collimator would fit the non-standard drawtube and this allowed me to align the scope accurately. The adjustment mechanisms on both mirrors worked very well. The secondary mount being held by a ball and socket arrangement I had never seen before.

Brian also turned up an alternative eyepiece holder for the drawtube as  the original would only accept 24mm (0.95") diameter eyepieces.

A few nights later after modifying my old binocular fork mount I ventured out to visually test the scope.

After 3 hours cooling down, alignment was still good. Although holding the scope steady was impossible without a proper mount, I could see that star images were very clean. Nice tight images with no sign of coma.

The mirrors have now gone to be accurately tested on an interferometer while I get on with some more restoration                  


© AstroKeith 2022