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    Re: Can someone identify this
    From: Bill Morris
    Date: 2008 Nov 13, 18:19 -0800

    I'm interested in this item too and planned to bid on it. If I won the
    bidding, I would take it apart, service it and put it together again
    in a restored state. Then I would post detailed labelled photographs
    for others to see. When tired of it, I would offer it to a museum for
    what it cost me. I agree it would be a pity for it to rest in private
    hands, undescribed and gathering dust. On the other hand, why should
    North America have all the luck? People in out-of-the way places love
    instruments too.
    
    Bill.
    
    On Nov 14, 11:12�am, "George Huxtable"  wrote:
    > There seems to be significant interest in this, perhaps unique, instrument,
    > first spotted by Bruce Hamilton.
    >
    > http://cgi.ebay.ca/ASTRONOMIC-CALCULATOR-SEXTANT-theodolite_W0QQitemZ...
    >
    > It would be a pity to miss that item, which has a couple of days to go
    > yet before the auction ends, and it's still at just over $100.
    >
    > Purchased by our list, or a subset of it, we between us could squeeze a lot
    > of value out of it, and then later donate it to an appropriate museum, such
    > as Mystic Seaport or the Mariner's Museum at Newport News (details don't
    > need deciding at this stage, just in-principle).
    >
    > IF (and it's a big if) we could quickly identify a list member who will
    > volunteer to act as purchaser and custodian (if a bid succeeds), then I for
    > one will offer to put in an equal share of the total cost up to a maximum of
    > $100, if at least three others will do the same. It would be most convenient
    > if the
    > custodian happened to live within striking distance of the vendor, who is at
    > Eden Prairie, MN, wherever the state of MN might be (Minnesota? Maine?), as
    > it does seem a bit unfair to subject such a precious item to the tender
    > mercies of the US postal service; but that might be unavoidable.
    >
    > What I would expect is that the custodian keeps it safely for, say, a few
    > months, making any investigation himself as he sees fit, but most
    > importantly, keeping �it available for members to inspect, respond to
    > questions, and post photos to the list as requested. It would be best, I
    > suggest, if we avoided transporting it about unnecessarily.
    >
    > Only if such a volunteer exists (and puts his hand up now) would this
    > proposal work But if it did, it could give us a lot of fun.
    >
    > An alternative would be if a list member bought the instrument himself off
    > his own bat, and then made the details avalable to the list. But wouldn't it
    > be a pity if it vanished into other hands?
    >
    > George.
    >
    > contact George Huxtable, now at geo...@hux.me.uk
    > or at +44 1865 820222 (from UK, 01865 820222)
    > or at 1 Sandy Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.
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