I still haven’t bought my stuff for the grinding of the mirrors but I do have the mirror blanks at home. If you don’t know about making scopes, 2 will be required. In ” Amateur Telescope Making”, they recommend using an oil drum to mount the tool on. I don’t have an oil drum, so an alternative is to fill a tub with cement (not a bathtub) and put a wood post in it that is perfectly straight. Once it has dried, you can mount another piece of wood on top of that legnthwise and there is a great sturdy “grinding stand”.
One of my observing heroes is Sir William Herschel, who of course, made the great 48 inch Newtonian Reflecting telescope. At the time of completion, it was the largest telescope ever built, having a focal length of 40 feet! But in the time of Herschel, there was no focault or Ronchi test and therefore, he had to star test the figure. So he had to mount it somehow, and look at a star with the polished surface only and see the appearance of the diffraction spikes, if any at all.
But anyway, I always had an interesting fascination towards actually building a telescope for some reason. Upon doing research for this post, I came across a website that can make you up to a 60inch telescope! Don’t ask how much it is, but a 36″ runs for 36,000 dollars! See for yourself : http://www.webstertelescopes.com/
Webster’s 32 inch f/3.6