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Our Telescope Project

El Valle Astronomers is embarked on an ambitious project to build a 32"" Dobsonian telescope. When completed, this telescope with be the largest private portable scope in New Mexico. Optical engineer and club member Jeff Simsovic is donating his time and labor to grind and polish our 32"" mirror. This is saving us thousands of dollars.

We are also extremely grateful to member Bill Trondeau, who is donating a 27 point flotation system on which the mirror will rest. He is also donating a 2"" focuser, and a Telrad and a plastic kydex secondary shroud.

Our Hale-Bopp T-shirt fundraiser a couple of years ago raised money that allowed us to purchase the 32"" disk of Black Vitrified Ceramic and has gotten us this far in the project. We still need more parts and equipment, as well as some specialized skills to complete the project.

John Moulton, a cabinet maker from Dixon is donating time and talent to make some of the wooden parts.

Items that we need include several lenses of different sizes, reflective coating for the finished mirror, at least two filters, birch hardcore plywood , a moveable 9 foot ladder with siderails for viewing safety. Thanks to donations from the following club members we now are the proud owners of a 6X10' enclosed trailer for our future 32"" club scope. Bill Trondeau, John Buting, Meade Martin, Dave Miller, Jeff Simsovic and Lee Mesibov.. Thanks also to Crystal Benson for giving us a discount on the trailer. The trailer must also be registered and insured.

Our ""Bible"" as far as the design and construction of the scope is the book The Dobsonian Telescope: A Practical Manual for Building Large Aperture Telescopes by David Kriege and Richard Berry, published by Willman-Bell, Inc.

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