Instructor Richard Ozer pushing a smaller-diameter
"tool" across the surface of his own mirror
Richard squirts on more "rouge"; a
polishing agent used to bring a super-fine finish to a mirror
when shaping it into a paraboloid. You can see the tool more clearly
in this image.
Instructor Bill Marriott uses the Ronchi tester
to evaluate how close a mirror is to acheiving a perfect parabola.
The closer it is, the better the quality of the images from the
is one of only a handful of regularly scheduled telescope making
workshops in the U.S., and probably the world; it meets every
Friday evening throughout the year, except Memorial Day weekend.
It has been in operation since December of 1930, founded by Franklin
B. Wright, and is currently run by Eastbay Astronomical Society
member Rich Ozer, with help from other EAS members, Dave Barosso,
Barry Leska, and others. The price of admission is FREE. All you
have to do is show up, buy a mirror blank and a "tool"
(typically around $100 - $200 depending on the size of the mirror)
and start "pushin' glass!" We supply you with instruction,
the various grits you'll need to first grind, and then polish
and figure your mirror, and all the testing equipment needed.
With a small bit of luck, you could wind up with a telescope that
costs 1/3 or 1/4 the cost of a store-bought telescope, that is
yet optically superior! It does take time - depending on
how much time you put in on it, and other factors, it could take
a few months or several months. But, it's a fun project, great
for kids, and at the end you get a great telescope!
For more information call or email
Richard Ozer at (510) 406-1914.