I'm seriously considering building a DIY dobsonian - probably 6" 1200mm, obviously for observing only; it doesn't have a drive. Very simple construction. Is this a good idea? :) http://www.scopemaking.net/dobson/dobson.htm

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It's a great idea! Building telescopes used to be a much bigger part of the astronomy hobby from what I can see, and it's time to bring that groove back.

I look forward to hearing on your progress!

Good to hear :) I'm getting more and more excited about it, and while I'm quite nervous to do a complete DIY scope first time around, buying the major parts (prim mirror, mirror cell, sec mirror, spider, focuser, eyepiece - am I missing anything?) isn't as pricey as I thought it would be at just shy of $300. The question now is - What would I have to pay to get an equivalent (6" f/8 1220mm) name-brand scope?

Once I get this one done, I might start looking at doing more "complete" DIY stuff. I would LURVE to be able to roll a nice 12" out of the garage on nice, warm, clear summer nights :) Oh an I have already contracted out a fashionable fabric tube cover to the wife...

Sweet! Keep us posted--I'd like to take a crack at this myself when I have workshop space again.

Ok, a little further along - the War and Finance Department has approved my project, and I think I'm going for an 8" f/6, and the mirror options confuse the heck out of me. There's one place that sells mirror and cell together for a bit over $200 (1/6 wavelength error, claimed), and other places that charge $500+ for the same size mirror, no cell. Anybody got any GOOD, reliable sources?

Oh yeah, I have a 4x8' sheet of fiber board too, for the mount :)

Ok - just a short update. I have cut out the two azimuth bearing plates - 2 x 25" diameter 3/4" boards that will be linked in the center by a bolt/nut and some washers, along with a bunch of furniture pads as "glide" material so they can rotate on one another. So it's slowly crawling along. 

Hah +

Hmm. That last reply didn't work right. I meant to post an update... I have bought two more pieces - a 6x30 finder, and a 2" Meade #680 focuser. Very excited!

Ah! Additional update - finder, focuser as well as primary and secondary mirrors are in da house! Going to obtain tube on Monday, and then all that's missing is the primary mirror cell and a spider for the secondary. I am looking all over the interwebz for some kind of documentation about the 680 focuser, but come up short. Anybody have something? :)

Ok! So - my telescope building is nearing its end. No, I didn't give up :) I darn near finished the thing! All I need now...the eye pieces. My darlin' wife got me a nice set of 2" pieces for xmas, but one of the eye pieces was broken (lenses rattling around inside the barrel), so I'm waiting for the replacement (RMA). Other than that - all done. Well, aside from some badly needed paint. I must take some pictures later. Anyhoo - if you don't care - sorry, I'm gonna be excited enough for both of us :)


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