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The Multifunctional, Reprogrammable Velcromatic Side Bearings with Magic Slider.
by Jack Brisbin
Printed in Reflections: March, 2004.
While contemplating on building a telescope of my own design, I decided to use existing optics from other telescopes and stuff from the ATM vault of stuff I forgot I had. I wanted to be able to use various finder scopes, eyepieces and secondary mirrors on this particular telescope. This also means you need some type of adjustable (re-programmable) side bearing to compensate for the different changes in weight to balance the telescope and make it more multifunctional.
I have often thought about using Velcro to hold the side bearings (altitude) to the telescope tube and eliminate the cradle and/or sliding weight to balance the tube. By using two strips of Velcro you could reposition the side bearing on the tube and compensate for the weight (balance point) of the telescope. The telescope tube pictured is a square wood tube that is 36’ long and holds an 8” f4.5 mirror.