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Ford Observatory in Wrightwood Break in and theft
By: Craig Bobchin
September 22, 2005 9:42PM PDT
Views: 7712

This Message was posted on the Usenet group Sci.Astro.Amateur by Jeff Schroeder. I told Jeff that we might be able to keep an eye out for any of the equipment. If you see any of the equipment mentioned in this article for sale please let me know and I'll pass the word to Jeff. hopefully we can help a fellow club through a rough time. The Ford Observatory in Wrightwood, Calif. was broken into a few days ago and much was lost. Many small items such as eyepieces, adapters and binoculars are probably unrecoverable. They also lost many tools including a full rollaway box, a computer, stereo and other items. One big loss was a custom equatorial mount and four inch refractor. The mount has a Celestron 14" polar assembly on a very rugged pier and wedge assembly. This unit weighs around 160 lbs and has finely machined parts that are green anodized. The 4" scope has a f/15 Jaegers lens, white tube and also green anodized fittings. This mount and scope have been at a couple of past RTMCs and is known to Jeff's local group as the Baja mount. The 4" refractor and camera platform mount are distinctive and will likely end up at a swap meet, or be kept for a time before they try to sell it. They DIDN'T get the legs for the pier, so it will be incomplete for any purchaser.

What they got was: 7X50 binoculars (so so quality)

10X50 binoculars (V good) Haven't heard from the owner about their brand.

5" F/5 refractor in red tube with flip mirror eyepiece holder. This scope is homemade and looks a little rough. It was one of the guidescopes for the 18" 4" F/15 Jaegers lens in a white tube stepped down near the eyepiece end. All fittings green anodized. Draw tube focus. This attaches to the camera platform.
60mm refractor. Homemade tube, Unitron focuser, Black anodized finish. No monetary, but great sentimental value.

Very large (3.5" dia) military surplus eyepiece.

Jeff mentioned that there is a reward for recovery of the equipment. So please if you see anything like what is on this list let us know.

Thanks Craig Bobchin

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