After a couple of months of intensive work, I am basically finished with what I hope will be my 'ultimate' or lifelong telescope: a 16" f/4.5 built around a notionally 1/20th wavefront Obsidian Optics primary with Galaxy Optics' enhanced coatings, and a certified 1/40th wave Antares secondary.
I started with a Baltic Birch structure and 18 point cell/tailgate by James Grigar of Astro Sky Designs, which I customized considerably with, among other things:
--a Clement focuser,
--Protostar spider and heated secondary holder
--Flash 4 Sky Commander with 8000 tic encoders
--powered ground board
--metal mirror sling, with teflon on the sling and mirror edge to avoid lateral friction/astigmatism (the coefficient of friction for teflon-on-teflon is virtually zero)
--built-in accessory table
--locks to allow secure transport of the assembled scope
--SEVEN variable speed ultra low vibration fans for active cooling
The Clement focuser was an integral element of the design, since it allows me for the first time to use my favorite planetary filter without Barlowing. (It takes 1.5" of in-travel beyond my next closest eyepiece, the Nagler 31.)
Here is the URL for the web site I'm building.
Follow the link to "Natasha" if you want more details about this scope. Comments are welcome, either substantively or about the site itself (it's my first foray into web publishing, so be gentle.)
I'll be adding a quad geared Dob Driver 2 once I decide whether to go with the classic belt drive, rim drive, or new "clutchless" rim drive on the azimuth axis. (I already plan to go with the clutchless setup on the azimuth axis.) Does anyone have any first hand experience with the clutchless drive?