ATM Making (and other things) Session October 15th, 2011 Near SLC

I have failed to mention that my friend Mat holds a monthly ATM session at his garage. In October that will occur on be on Saturday, October 15th, 2011.

There are several items that will be either discussed or started. There will be mirror grinding and testing; discussion of building and possibly starting of building an observing chair. Also I will be finishing building some dew strips for a dew heater. Finally, if you own an Orion XT Classic Dob you may want to look over some of these mods and see if you want to get what you need and come by and do some of these modifications to your scope to improve it.

1. Balancing with bungee cords as tension mounts vs the spring on the Orion XT10, 8, 6 or 12 if someone has this. Not an issue on the Zhumell brand.

2. Altitude and Azmuith Motion fixes

I can supply the plastic milk (actually distilled water but same plastic) if people want to try the milk jug washers. They can also put a milk jug washer on their secondary so the screws or Bob's Knobs don't grind into it when they go to adjust the secondary during collimation. Putting plastic washers on an intelliscope base won't work as it interferes with the clearance necessary for the reading to be correct on the encoder.

3. Accessory Shelf for Dobs

Think I want to make one of these!

4. Lazy Susan Fix for Azmuith

To be done at one's own risk because it can ruin the encoders.

5. Simple metal handles via screws on the tube for carrying.

6. A BIG Mod is to fix the reverse dovetail on the Orion scopes that holds the finderscope or the EZ finders. Because the dovetail is reversed mounted it means the finderscope or EZ finder can easily fall out if the screw becomes loose. This has happened to me at least once that I can remember and it means that you could be looking to buy a new finderscope. This thread from CloudyNights discusses how to fix the reverse dovetail by putting a hole in the dovetail so the thumbscrew can fit into it and not become loose and fall. I'll be doing that modification as well. You can see in the photo below (from Ken at CloudyNights) that he simple used a Dremel tool to make a notch; you can see the photo and comments from others at the thread link above to CloudyNights.

So if you want to come out, simply email me at JayLEads at gmail dot com (please fix this to normal email standards; this is done to avoid hackers) and I can get you in touch with Mat or give directions to his garage where we do the ATM session.