n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Pushing the limits of the Foucault Test : telescope making




Amateur Telescope Making (ATM) is a hobby that remains alive and well despite the general availability of commercial telescopes. This is evidenced by the popularity of events like the annual ScopeX in Johannesburg where telescope builders display their creations. ATM'ers worldwide have the knack of coming up with many innovative approaches to problems, making improvements to existing designs and methods and making do with materials that are generally or locally available. This also applies to the techniques for grinding, polishing and figuring of telescope mirrors of various sizes and focal ratios. Excellent mirrors are made both by hand and machine.


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