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.

  Light Weight Pre-Slumped Mirrors
These are Mike's finished 10 inch and 12 inch blanks that still need to be edged and diametered. The
top image shows the 3D printed pattern that they are made from. The bottom image shows that they
are pre-slumped to a rough ROC. There is also an older video on Youtube that shows his entire
process of making the light-weight blanks, from design and 3D printing, to plaster casting, to glass
casting, to slumping and final edge finishing at Mike recently
posted a video on Youtube of him cutting a bunch of mirror blanks out of a thick glass tabletop. You
might find it interesting. Here's the link:

  3D Printed Dob Truss Pole Clamp Set
This is a 3D printed 1" truss pole clamp set for a Dobsonian telescope. The STL files and editable
model is available on Links on where to get the knobs, truss poles and other
parts are in the comment fields there also. The parts have been printed and fit nicely but have not
been tested on a scope yet.

  3D Printed Telrad Dew Shield
Using an Ender 5 3D printer and a file from Thingiverse I printed a Telrad dew shield. The 16 inch
Maxx has a blue focuser so I used blue plastic for the dew shield. It's a snug fit and the cutout
for the Telrad dimmer could be a bit larger towards the front. It's time to tweak the model a bit.

  Joe W. with his 8" f/8 "planet hunter" he built
He put the newly recoated mirror in the scope today and gave it a general tune up. Still in good
shape for being about 15 years old.

  Joe got John Dobson's signature on his scope
Joe got John Dobson the give his scope the seal of approval at the 2005 OBS Star Party held at
Alafia River State Park.

  Mike P's 16" Scope is Taking Shape
Mike's pieces for his 16" Dob. base have been rough cut out.

  Bino Bill with his finished 10" scope
Bill showing off his finished scope made at the mirror lab

  Brad's mirror box glued up
After a bit of a hammer fit the box joints came together

  Brad Cutting box joints
Brad Cutting box joints for the mirror box for his 16" mirror

  Raffle Scope for 2021 OBS Star Party Takes Shape
Original Meade LightBridge base

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