Friday, May 24, 2013

Advantages of Fiberglassing the Sonotube

I had mentioned that I was going to put the polyester resin on the edges of all the holes, big and small, that I made in the Sonotube, to reinforce the edges and prevent fraying.  This worked like a charm.  I discovered that it also made the holes just a little small -- which meant redrilling the holes for the small ones.  I actually found the bolts that hold the mirror cell in place were threading into the holes!  I would not count on threads in this stuff holding any real load, but at least the bolts weren't flopping about in there!

The eyepiece focuser hole, however, required some filing -- and unlike Sonotube, which doesn't file well, the composite material I produced actually filed very nicely indeed -- better than the paint, which chipped a bit.  A very nice result.

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