ASTRONOMICAL OBSERVATORY

 click here for site front page

I have made several telescopes over the years , a few 6 inchers , an 8 inch (while at school)), and a 10 inch which I still use .. But my real pet is the scope shown in the pictures below. A lot of people were involved in the fund raising, and General construction of the Telescope and Observatory , However as I have said elsewhere This is my website and so I will only mention my part in this...The Observatory follows closely a plan that I drew up for it in about 1988. The Telescope itself has been extensively remade By myself, from its original installation....I have upgraded the Gearbox , made a new mirror cell (with an 18 point flotation system), A lighter more accurate four vane spider, a new flat holder, a Whole new top end, and a laser Guided rotation system for the flat Mirror............................ To be continued

click on below to see photo

0.5 metre, Reflecting Telescope

5mtr.Observatory Dome

Observatory darkroom

Half Mtr.Telescope in Dome

Me (on left) and Dave,

Me and my new 'top end' of Telescope

Looking in,through slot in dome

Looking through dome slot

T.V. Camera,and Telrad viewfinder

Looking down at stairwell

Almost along line of sight

Note switch for laser ,and round target

Me

Six inch refractor by Grubb of Dublin

6 Inch Refractor

Grubb Advertisement

Grubb Telescope

Grubb Telescope 

HISTORY   Our Grubb telescope is a 6 inch (150mm) refractor, it has a focal length of 80 inches (2000 mm) giving it a focal ratio of f.13. Built around 1895 by the renowned telescope makers Grubb of Dublin. .   The origins of this particular instrument are somewhat lost in the mists of time, but it is clear that it was in use in the post-war period by a gentleman living in Dartington near Totnes in Devonshire (England). It was Latter donated to a Mrs Iris Allison of the Dartington Astronomical society, where it became the society's centrepiece instrument. However, it fell into disuse in the early 1980's and was then loaned to the Sidmouth and District Astronomical society, who intended to find a suitable housing for it.   The Sidmouth society however, had at this time become more preoccupied with the more important task of renovating Sir Norman Lockyer's ( The discoverer of Helium )Telescopes and Observatories, on Salcome Hill in Sidmouth Devon.Thus the Grubb refractor, had been dismantled and languished in a shed, with the cast Iron Pillar stand left outside to became almost lost in thick undergrowth.    

RESCUE     The Torbay Astronomical Society (TAS) had, for many years, been using a very old Telescope a 9 inch reflector by Browning (ironically) loaned to them by the Norman Lockyer observatory.  When the time came to return it, a deal was struck whereby Torquay boys grammar school (TBGS) would collect the Grubb refractor, under the agreement that the instrument would be fully restored and found a suitable housing. The instrument was thus transported Torquay in the summer of 1993 and I began the lengthily process of restoration. Iris Allison confirmed in writing the transfer of the instrument to the school in perpetuity.    

RESTORATION   The Restoration process was carried out during the following year. This involved complete stripping off layer after layer of old paint that had built up over many years (including on most of the Brasswork!) Even the 'clockwork' drive mechanism was stripped down. During the School 'Activities week' of 1993 a group of boys from the school Astronomy club, set to work stripping the paint off the  cast iron base of the scope, this was achieved by means of an electric sander, a  gas blow torch and lots of hard scraping. all the paint was stripped off, and small pits in the cast Iron filled.Parts of the Telescope/mechanism itself were then bathed in an acid to get off years of dirt. Then all the brass parts were coated with clear lacquer, after re-assembly the Telescope and mount were sprayed with primer. The Mount and stand were then painted dark green. This was chosen as after undoing some bolts a ring of original paint became visible, and this was matched so that the mount and pillar stand are as near as possible to the colour the scope would have been when new.....The scope tube was sprayed a cream colour, again matching remnants of original paint    

FUTURE The telescope is most suited to making observations of the Moon and Planets, but it provides fine views of many other Astronomical objects. There are currently plans to build an Observatory, similar in dimensions, and near to the one presently housing the TAS / TBGS. Half Metre Reflector. ......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................  Links to other GRUBB Refractors

http://www.uv.es/obsast/in/instrum/grubb.html

http://www.oan.es/museo/ecuatogrubb.html