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!
Just mapping out, as I do, a totally different refractor. This will be an f9 92mm with bellows light weight, yet strong rotatable focuser. A rack and pinion one will follow later. This one will take a 1.25" the larger models will carry a 2" diagonal and bino viewers. Long way to go and time is short at present, but in the wee small hours I'll keep machining to hopefully create a unique retroscope for the future.....If that makes sense!
It's not like I'm not busy, having just received another new commission yesterday, building a classic scope around a stunning Zeiss 105AS lens cell on it's way to me now, but I've landed myself with this monster and boy do I have plans for it! Well, when time permits, this beast a, 150mm f12, Istar is to be stripped and completely re-modeled and definitely needs a handle or two or three {new design coming} and serious counter weight system to push it up the mount. Life at Moonraker is a bit like eating "Pringles".......... Must start working out, as lifting this now is a pain!

Here are some images of progress on three telescopes, one large f10 doublet and two triplets, 140mm and one 102mm both f6.5 destined for Italy. There's away to go, but everything comes to those that wait......Not too long I hope. Thank you to all my customers for your patience, at least it's not years you have to wait like Astro Physics.... Hopefully soon Moonraker will be in Paris and I'm expecting a visit from Italy so we can get our scopes displayed very soon.