Saint Petersburg Astronomy Club - Mirror Lab


We are looking for a new home
As soon as we have the new location set we will post the location and hours here.

Our Founder

Paul McNabb founded the mirror lab in 1997 in order to create the best amateur telecopes possible. Inch for inch our mirrors surpass store bought or commercial grade scopes.

04/12/2012 more


  • Ralph Craig - Lab Instructor
  • Allen Maroney - Lab Instructor
  • Ron Jones - The Figurer
  • Mike Davis - Casts Mirrors
  • Dimitri - Support


  • James Lerch - Robo Foucault
  • Matt Terry
  • Charlie Mullen
  • Bruce Kazcmarik
  • Keevy McAlavy

In Memorium

  • Irv Nadelhaft
  • Lenny Remetta

04/12/2012 more


Where the 19th Century Art of Mirror Making Meets the 21st Century

The Saint Petersburg Mirror Lab is a small band of dedicated mirror grinders and telescope makers living in the Tampa Bay area of Florida. We offer a mirror making class for interested persons. We strive to create the best mirrors our home brew technology can muster. This includes robotic foucault testing and laser interferometry.

  The first ever mother-daughter team is making a 10 inch mirror
Megan sets up the mirror for testing with Robo.

  2007 Raffle Mirror is finished.
The 2007 OBS Rafflescope Mirror was completed. On robo foucault it tested out to 1/15th wave. Of
course we now have to build the scope to hold it.

  Hazel Gehlsen newest Mirror Lab graduate
Congratulations to Hazel Gehlsen who completed an 8 inch f/6 mirror that tested better
than 1/9 wave! Hazel is also the first woman to complete a mirror in the lab. She did such a
good job on her 8 inch we'd thought we'd get her to help out on an 18 inch as well.

  Completed Mirrors For October
Allen 12.5 inch annual refiguring
Tom Spano 14.25 inch Black BVC Glass
Joe Colontonio 10 inch (used a special mesh for his pitch lap)

  New Mirror Graduate Steve Kane
Congratulations to Steve Kane who completed a 10inch f/5.6 mirror that tested better than
1/5 wave.

  How to paint the inside of a tube

Paul demonstrates a device he made out of plumbing parts that allows the easy spray painting of
the inside of tubes.

  Two Mirror Graduates
Well done to Art Ross who completed a 10inch f/5 mirror and Richard Garner who
finished a 10inch f/6.2

  2005 Orange Blossom Special with John Dobson
John inspects Ralph's and Allens work. It was fun to discuss the finer points of mirror grinding
with one of the masters.

John autographs the 2005 Mirror Lab Rafflescope.

Allen Maroney held a digital camera up to a 26mm Plossl on a 3.1inch refractor

  OBS 2004 Images

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