How to build a dobsonian telescope

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how to build a dobsonian telescope

The Dobsonian Telescope: A Practical Manual for Building Large Aperture Telescopes by David Kriege

This book tells how you can build a state-of-the-art Dobsonian telescope using readily available materials and supplies. Every step of construction is detailedin photographs and diagrams, and the underlying ideas are carefully explained. As a result of this three-year collaboration between authors David Kriege and Richard Berry, experienced and well-known telescope makers, you now have the opportunity to build a high-performance telescope from 14 inches to 40 inches aperture based on the thoroughly tested designs described in this book. The Dobsonian telescope takes its name from the astronomer/philosopher John Dobson, who introduced the concept of inexpensive, large-aperture telescopes to astronomy. Amateur astronomers at the time were so amazed that a telescope builtfrom simple, inexpensive materials performed so well that they could hardly believe their eyes. As home-built Dobsonians started showing up at star parties across the nation and people saw what Dobsonians could do, the word spread. In just a few years, the Dobsonian revolution swept the world. Since those early telescopes, Dobsonians have improved dramatically. An entire generation of amateur telescope makers contributed their best insights and refinements to Dobsons original design. Todays Dobsonians are larger, lighter,and more precise than ever before. For example, it is possible to build a telescope of 20 inches aperture that is compact enough to transp
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Making a Dobsonian mount

Build a Backyard Dobsonian Telescope

How to build a I began building it in the spring of , but the bulk of the work was done in July of with first light occurring on July This Instructable describe the planning, design, and parts of the scope, as well as the process of building The scope. This is the first telescope that I have built. I found out pretty quickly that building my own telescope would only be a bargain if I made my own mirror and mechanical parts. This might have been tempting if I wanted to build a 6 inch scope—at that size, they say that first-timers do pretty well at grinding and figuring their own optics. But I wanted a larger mirror, and, at that size, grinding my own was not an option.

While doing so may not necessarily save you significant amounts of money, the satisfaction of enjoying the nighttime sky with a viewing instrument you crafted yourself make building your own well worth the effort. Following is a basic overview of the steps to follow. Before you begin building, you will need to choose a few basic features that control the other design details: Your aperture size the diameter of your primary mirror and your focal length. Once you select these features, you should be able to input them into a design program that will calculate the dimensions you need. One of the most popular of these programs is Newt-Web, which will create a Dobsonian design that meets your specifications.

The Dobsonian telescope is simplicity itself: a Newtonian reflector mounted on a basic altaz mount. Many thousands of astronomers have constructed their own Dobsonians, but the satisfaction of building your own mount is immense. By Steve Richards. Alternatively, you could opt for a natural wood finish if you use the more expensive Birch plywood; this wood has a nicer grain, with fewer knots and blemishes, which gives a better result when varnishing. Power tools — A plunge router for cutting the circular components of the mount; hand drill with 1. Tape measure and pencil — Accurate measurements are essential for making sure that the mount assembles to a tight tolerance.

Step 1: The Parts and Budget

When I set out to build a portable telescope, known as a Dobsonian telescope, the first step had me stymied—where do you find 6 ft of 8-in. I'm a physicist by training, an amateur astronomer by inclination and an occasional visitor to the home center for DIY projects. A massive tube is not usually on my shopping list. I stood in the store with meticulous notes on the materials I needed, but no one could find them. And no, my local hardware store did not carry Teflon. I had heard that building a Dobsonian was simple and inexpensive.

In this section we will show you how to build a complete Dobsonian Telescope. At about the inch size, it is more practical to switch to a truss-tube design, which we will not cover at this time see [Kriege97] for very good plans on building large aperture truss-tube Dobsonians. There are many ways to build a Dobsonian telescope, with many design decisions to be made. Our goal here is to guide you through building a basic Dobsonian that will function well, and our choices reflect that. Other plans may make other perfectly valid choices, or may have different design goals. A Dobsonian Telescope is a optically a Newtonian Reflector mounted on a Alt-Az mount with a low and stable center of gravity and Teflon-Laminate bearings.

Dobsonian telescopes are popular with amateur telescope makers for their ease of design and construction, portability, and their use of large optical mirrors. Pioneered by John Dobson in the s, the instrument combines a Newtonian reflector telescope with a unique two-axis movable base. It uses a primary mirror to capture and reflect light, a secondary mirror to direct light into an eyepiece, and a focuser to make fine adjustments for viewing. My finished inch Dobson telescope. Photo by Carrie Fay Amaro.

5 thoughts on “The Dobsonian Telescope: A Practical Manual for Building Large Aperture Telescopes by David Kriege

  1. Because of the simplicity of the Dobsonian's reflector design and altazimuth mount, it is possible to build one yourself at home.

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