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telescope making

Telescope Making Meetings

UPDATE 2/19/2004 Presently the classes are being held at a private residence in North County Escondido, NOT at CSU San Marcos. This change is indefinite. The classes are still Saturdays from 9am-12pm. To get directions and weekly notifications of meetings being held please sign on to the ATM class e-mail list. Your information is NEVER handed out or used for commercial purposes.

Mirror TestingTelescope making classes, OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. Join together with beginners and experienced telescope makers while we grind mirrors and discuss every aspect of telescope design. The meetings are sponsored by the SDAA, but membership is not required. Bring your existing mirror project or find out how to get started. YOU CAN START THE CLASSES ANY SATURDAY AND JUST ABOUT ANYONE CAN DO IT!

  • WHEN: Saturdays, 9am-12pm, except for those Saturdays closest to major holidays or other dates listed below.
  • WHERE: Private residence in Escondido, North County San Diego

Email list: Put yourself on the email list to make sure that you are kept notified of changed meeting times, dates, cancellations, etc.. PLEASE NOTE: This is not a active ATM email list; it is only for emailings on our meetings and occassional messages and notices between class members. In addition, all known meeting cancellations will be listed below.

Supplies: We have the complete grit compound sequence in stock (#80, 120, 220, 320, 25mc (in lieu of #500sc), 12mc, CerOx). Grits are provided at no cost provided you donate ($2 suggested per class meeting). We also have mirror blanks in stock (see below for availability/details). These are precision annealed, high quality blanks from United Lens. Finally, we have dental plaster and ceramic tiles for making a tool (see tutorial). The following is the list of availability:

  • 8" blank is $40 + $7 for shipping
    • In stock (as of 4/30/2002): 2
  • 6" blank is $22.50 + $5 for shipping
    • In stock (as of 4/30/2002): 2
  • 10" blank is $100 + $12 for shipping
    • In stock (as of 4/30/2002): 1
  • 12.5" porthole blank is $30
    • In stock (as of 04/30/2002): 1
  • Ceramic tiles for tools (cut to fit your blank)*
  • Dental plaster*

    *Grit, ceramic tiles and dental plaster are covered by class donations.

The bottomline is that all you have to do is show up! Feel free to bring your own supplies if you do not want to take advantage of our stock on hand. Please review the rules for any other supplies (like a water bucket) you might need. While we have these supplies they are NOT brought to every meeting. If you need something or think you're ready to get started please email and let Roger know so he can bring what you need.

What to bring (bare minimum):

  • Small bucket, a little larger than the diameter of your mirror, for cleaning off/rinsing blank
  • Small water bottle for suspending the grit into water mixture
  • The grits you'll need for the day
  • Rubber anti-skid shelve covering (found at Wal-Mart, Target, etc. for lining shelves) or something to hold the blank in place while its ground on
  • Clean towels recommended

NOTE: We have obtained permission from parking services to use the loading dock in the staff parking lot, immediately next to the Science Hall building, for temporary loading and unloading of our stuff. So if you can't hike your equipment/supplies up from the parking lots, park there and bring your stuff up to the room, and then go back down and move your vehicle up to a real parking lot.

**Important** Click here for meeting rules
The Fine Print: A $2 donation per meeting for room rental is appreciated (ATM instructors are exempted). There may be additional fees requested depending on supplies requested and used. These will be nominal (see above for a description of these fees). Please review meeting rules when possible.
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