With the approach of Comet ISON and the Mars 2014 apparition getting under way and me out of commission for the past 2 months with a back injury, I have been chomping at the bit to (1) get observing and (2) get cracking on the hiss drive rover.
It’s been a few months since the last entry (which I thought I had published already but…oops…it was still a draft until tonight) but all the real progress has taken place in the last three days or so.
To start, I constructed some more triangles out of wood, only this time it was two brackets attaching to one of the plywood boards I cut back in July. With the new band saw, this work was easy on the back and quick and precise (well, for me, at least). First came the brackets:
Then came the board:
And Bob’s your uncle, there’s half of the hiss drive! Everything is glued and screwed and solid. 15 Minutes later (now that I had everything figured out) I had the top half done!
My location demands that the piano hinge angle be 43.3°. Well, that precision is beyond my skills, so since I have an uneven driveway and yard (where I’ll be observing) I decided to take it easy, cut the angles at 45° and install a t-nut and bolt to bring the front end to 43°-ish. Close enough for government work…
The next step was attaching the board to the upper part, where the telescope will actually sit. I trimmed it to length and glued and screwed it down:
That was all the time I had and though my back still felt pretty good, I didn’t want to push my luck. But, progress, faster and better than version 1, that’s for sure!