For the past few weeks, I’ve been designing my next telescope, an Albert Highe inspired 16″ dobsonian. The decision to build my own telescope stemmed from the fact that I knew exactly what I wanted, and I could not get it from any of the well known US telescope manufacturers. In addition, I wanted to learn new skills, including computer assisted design and woodworking. The image to the left is the latest rendering of the optical tube assembly as I envisioned it (click for a higher resolution image). Below are my original specifications:
- The mirror box and rocker box must fit together within 24″ x 24″ x 18″, so that it fits in my car.
- The eyepiece height cannot exceed 64″, so that I don’t have to use a step stool or a ladder.
- The weight of the heaviest component cannot exceed 40 lbs, so that I can easily lift it.
- Overall cost must not exceed $5,000.
I opted for a 16″ F/4 mirror, which should fit my goals. In the next few months, I will be posting photographs as I build and assemble the various parts that make up the telescope. Stay tuned!
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