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Shupmann Telescope Gathering #2


Another closeup of these marvelous telescopes

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Τηλεσκόπια και Εξοπλισμός

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Hi Frank,


Well, another neat instrument to whet the appetite.

I was wondering about the state of ATM's on the East Coast. Is there still a decent amount telescope making going on? People still pushing glass? I know that in the past two decades things have taken a down-turn in that area due to the advent of computer controlled instruments flooding the market. I still enjoy looking at an atlas and locating the object that I want to view. Naturally, each method has its merits.



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Hey Fred,


As you know Stellafane is the birthplace of ATM ..

The Springfield Telescope Makers group is still quite active and they offer mirror grinding courses throughout the year.


Aside from these guys there are now so many Optical companies that produce good mirrors that many ATM's are opting to purchase the optics and construct the rest of the scope themselves.


One fellow in our club recently built a very fine 12in Reflector - with optics that were purchased locally -


The member told me that "time wise" it did not make sense for him to spend countless hours pushing glass ... he prefered to spend that time under the stars observing the heavens.



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Hey Frank,


The art of pushing glass naturally does have its merits. When I did a 6-inch f/8 mirror, the literal feeling I got while grinding was something else. To the eye the sagitta, the depth of the curve, looks real small but to the feeling in ones fingers it feels like you are pushing down into a large salad bowl. I can't say that I have tackled the art of making a secondary mirror. I have an old 10-inch Corning Pyrex 1 to 6 ratio mirror blank in my collection that I use for demo purposes along with the tools for grinding the six inch. To bad Corning has dicontinued manufacturing full thickness mirror blanks, I guess the stock of blanks will eventually dry up. I did build a telescope for the 6-inch by following the instructions in Richard Berry's book on building telescopes and a few points from the other texts in my library on ATMing.



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Hi Fred,

Congrats for your 6in mirror - well done.


When I joined the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) many years ago, FRED CLARKE a very knowledgeable and dedicated telescope and mirror maker was giving mirror making classes at our Centre. Many of our members have made some very decent mirrors under the watchful eye of Fred Clarke.


I have helped a few members push a few mirrors and one year I helped push the 22 inch mirror at Stellafane but I must admit I am not an expert.


Anyway Fred passed away a few years ago and in his honor an annual award is presented at CAFTA (Concours Annuel de Fabricants de Telescopes d'Amateurs) ... translated it means: "Annual Telescope Making Contest".


This is a Local Telescope Makers Convention held annually where telescope makers from all the clubs in Montreal and the surrounding areas get to present their telescopes and enter them in the competition ... basically it is a "mini Stellafane"...


Located about 1 hour from Montreal CAFTA has for many years presented the Fred Clarke Award in his memory.

See below for more details:





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