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8" f4 Meade Schmidt-Newtonian

Meade SN8 on a fork mount Meade SN8 on a Dobsonian mount

I received this scope when a friend passed away. Although the fork mount it was on was driven, it also was too prone to vibration for my tastes. Plus, I "grew up" on a GEM and have never really come to terms with how fork mounts move (or not!). Seems I was always pulling a the whole thing over, lifting the legs off the ground when I was trying to move it around the sky. So, after convering my old SkyDesigns Dobsonian to a TeleKit, I reused some of the wood and assorted hardware to make a mini-Dob mount for the Schmidt-Newtonian OTA. In addition, I replaced the nicely machined (but rather frustrating to use) Meade helical focuser with a Meade rack & pinion model. I gave the fork mount to a friend who ended up with a Criterion Dynamax 8 with only their "table top" mount for it. I even made an attractive dew shield (not shown here) to protect the vulnerable corrector plate.

The end result was a vast improvement. Trouble is, I'm still 6'2" and the whole scope and mount was about half of that. So, I ended up selling it to a friend at the Deep South Regional Star Gaze a couple of years ago. He tells me his grandkids give it quite a workout now. I couldn't be happier!

P.S.- I finally got the fork mount back from my friend when he moved out of town. Turns out he had no use for it, either!