On the 10th October. The XRT-C team returned to the site at Caradon observatory after the summer break. On the agenda for this, the 4th building stage, was to fill the up-righted stand with sand to make it heavier and more stable in the wind, and also to fit the top plate.

Site owner Ken Bennett is first up the ladder with the first bag of sand.

Site owner Ken Bennett is first up the ladder with the first bag of sand.

Using 5 bags of kiln dried sand purchased from B&Q, it was a relatively trivial job to ascend the stand and pour in the sand via a funnel.

The top plate of the telescope - prior to painting and welding.

The top plate of the telescope – prior to painting and welding.

The top plate was a bit more fiddly. This plate exists to provide precision alignment of the motor and dish through manual adjustment of steel plate height as it is supported by a selection of nuts and bolts. The plate has six holes through which threaded 12mm poles can extend down before connecting to a similar plate on the top of the stand. A variety of regular and nyloc nuts were used to secure the top plate in position. We also welded an additional pole to the top plate which is where the dish motor will be shortly mounted.

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Top plate (white) goes into position.

Top plate (white) goes into position.