Making the ordinary extraordinary and unique. This is the mount for another project, nearly finished.
Well it was a fun day up in London a few weeks ago when we were on a photo shoot with the X Factor Team. It was a long day and I hate driving in London, but it all went well. We were approached by the team to supply a telescope and tripod as a prop for the magazine cover, now if only they all got out of the way it would truly have been a good picture....... :o)
Originally they were going to use a 102 triplet "Dark Matter" scope, but they thought it looked to much like a ray gun, hey ho! Still came out ok.
We did a mock up shot for lighting, that's Paul and me on the right. Really got to loose weight!!!!
Been really busy, so I've only up dated a few things on @moonrakermaker on Twitter and on facebook.
Scotland was great meeting clients and having my own photoshoot for the project. Why they would want to shoot a mystery, but all is progressing. Another Lzos lens has been ordered for another project and hopefully soon look forward to seeing, at least a bit of a Moonraker scope, in the national press this or next weekend. They came to Moonraker looking for truly unique and individual custom made scopes to choose from...............
Some work in progress.
Busy as usual and just received another commission for a Lzos triplet 130mm f9. Lens is now on order from APM and the build will commence in about eight weeks. Also potentially my first custom 10" Newtonian....
This will be a lean mean slick machine as per clients specifications.........................Now, as you can see I'm chopping tube for an f15, but had real problems getting the whole length in for the first cut so as to not waste any....Perhaps I need a bigger workshop, especially as I will soon be ordering another lathe....
Making headway on this project...... Tube needs to be cut to length, but I'm just making sure it is a snug fit with no slop for the focuser adapter and counter cell. 
The inside of the OTA has a machined internal ring to ensure secure mounting of the focuser adapter as the tube is thin rolled and seamed with not enough wall thickness to enable a secure fit. Nuts on the inside could work loose
Also due to the 150mm diameter OTA, six screws are used to distribute the loading as three, is not enough to take the 2.5" focuser weight and EP,s and camera etc. A little thing, but important.

This refractor will be in black, polished alli with brass screws and counter weight.
Here are some images of bits just machined destined for two or three different orders A nearly finished 50mm finder, housing and retainer for a triplet and 6" rings 13.5mm wide being cut on the lathe. There is something satisfying about starting with a billet of metal and, with your own hands and machines, turning it in to parts of a functioning telescope. The difference being, I suppose, like a view from a mountain where one person has walked up and the other hitched a lift.The view is the same, but the experience is totally different. It's all about the journey........
Early stages of a dew shield for a 5" triplet with counter cell......This may not look complicated, but this is a non standard tube size as I'm working on improving the proportions between the OTA diameter and dew shield diameter yet still make it collimateable with a perfect snug push fit with no slop, so doing away with fixing screws...
A selection of images of the finished 150mm f10 and 60mm triplet APO which have been delivered and set up. Fantastic clients, now friends, Wiskey, cigars, log fire, great location wonderful hosts. Images of dome set up coming soon. Also some images of support struts being made for more Delta pods destined for Russia, Australia and the USA...........

More bits and bobs


Images below are custom rings with finder brackets with counter weight shaft and mounts to fit a Vixen 6", one of only six in the country. The lens cell and lens, just arrived, is for an f10 150mm scope hopefully to be installed next week along with a 60mm triplet to match. Even on the counter cell, to make sure it is perfectly centered, it has been rebated so the lens cell flange is flush to the countercell. A small thing but important to do the best you can do for the client.

Also just a heads up to a few comments I saw on SGL, I don't just do shiny/polished, commissions have included, black, white, red, victorian rust brown & grey as well as other finishes in polished & plated as do other makers. My maxim is "you don't buy what we make, we make what you want to buy" So If you have an idea please do get in touch. 
Just a bit of fun, but the point stands, a car is just a car and serves it's purpose so why buy more expensive cars as they all do the same.....Because it's an extension of our personality {sometimes} and serves more than one purpose, that being transport, for if we are fortunate enough with some spare £££, it transports us in our imagination and the journey is that much more enjoyable. Life is full of choices and sometimes its nice to treat ourselves and be a little indulgent! 
Moonraker telescopes, not normal, totally insane, but then normal is sooooo boring!