End of an era?

Roland Christen

Hi Astronuts,

Today I finished the last of the 10" F14.5 Maks, which will go to whoever is on our list. This is the last of my hand figured Maks that I plan to make of this size and focal length in production. It used to be that there was much more visual astronomy than there is today, probably because imaging was hard in the film days and for the first couple of years when we had small chips to do electronic imaging. Nowadays it is impossible to get visual views that remotely resemble what you can do with a few thousand bucks worth of electronic equipment.

That said, here is my last production Mak, aimed at a far distant telephone pole insulator which has a glint of sunshine that shows up as an artificial star. With a 5mm SPL ocular (737x) I see a tight high contrast Airy disc at focus. For those who don't know what that is - an Airy disc is the smallest resolvable spot from a distant point source that can be seen in any telescope. For a 10" it's approximately 4.5 arc seconds, and is surrounded by a few faint diffraction rings. With a scope like this I once saw the Sirius Pup in the Florida Keys when the separation was a mere 4 arc seconds.

Business end of the mighty Mak

Let there be light and minimal obstruction

The little Stowaway couldn't help hitching a ride on it's big sister

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