Spot Observatory:
2005 Expansion
1976 Precursor
In April-May, 2005 the observatory  building was lengthened by nine feet to 23
feet to permit separation of the two piers to allow simultaneous use of both
telescopes.  In addition, the rails were extended by 16 feet (to 34 feet) to permit
the roof to be moved further from the building than before.  As part of the original
planning, a decision was made to not image below 25-30 degrees.  As a result, the
walls were set at 7 feet, permitting a standard door, and a roof pitch of 5 in 12 was
chosen, resulting in good wind protection with the roof open, and plenty of
headroom when closed.  Several trees were removed as part of the expansion to
improve visibility down to 15-20 degrees.
Master Observatory Builder
Butch Moss working on 2005
Milky Way
Solar System
New Images
The completed
observatory in 2005,
with Nashville artist
Rusty Wolfe after
installation of
Below, and to the right: My first observatory, built by my father
and me behind my house in Memphis, Tennessee in 1976.  It was
10 x 10 feet, with 4 foot walls.  Next to a busy intersection, I
could see the brighter planets and the moon, but not much else.  I
made a 10" F/5.6 reflector to mount on my RV6 Dynascope
mount.  It was seriously undermounted.  Note the coffee can
weight on the counterweight shaft extension.  In 1978, when I
left Memphis, a Quantum 4 mak replaced this equipment (for the
next 26 years) until I built my current observatory in 2004.  For
more photos of my older equipment in use in Memphis and on
total solar eclipse trips, click
Observatory builders Wendell Manner,
my uncle Jack McDade and me in 1976.
Above, the original slab, and to the
right, the partially completed original
observatory in early 2004