Solution for Flats- Use Electroluminescent Flat Panel
This material produces a very even light source and takes up no more room than a picture frame.
Comes in three sizes: 8"x 11" 11" x 16" 16" x 23"
I used the 11" x 16" which will cover up to a 10" diameter scope.
Be sure to order the Parallel Panels with power supply/inverter included.
Build Frame For Electroluminescent Flat Screen
Built a simple 13" x 18" (inside dimensions) wooden frame to hold the Flat Electroluminescent Panel. Used 1/8" Acrylic, translucent white plastic, to diffuse the light. Cut to fit 13" x 18" frame.
Back of Frame with EL Panel in place
Oops, could have made frame a little bigger............had cut out clearance for wiring.
Note: Wires are very fragile. Cannot bend very much. Also cut slot w/snug-fit for cable strain-relief.
EL Panel- taped down to foam board and covered with drafting vellum (20 layers).
I covered the EL Panel to reduce light output.....Power supply has variable output, but was still too bright.
Later, I may try using 1/4" thick acrylic to eliminate the Vellum paper, however this works just fine as-is!!
Back side of frame with metal clips to hold everything in place
Picture frame, 1/8" offset clips hold down against foam board.
Finished Frame- Mounted to aluminum track for hanging in front of scopes.
Slotted track to allow for sliding the panel (right to left) in front of either scope.
Panel Installed in Observatory
When scope is sent to home position #1, flats are ready to be taken.......nothing to setup or breakdown!
It's Flat Time!