We fabricated x-ray mirrors for hard x-ray (≳10 keV) telescopes using multilayer coatings and an improved epoxy-replicated aluminum foil (ERAF) nonvacuum technology. The ERAF optics have ∼1 arcmin axial figure half-power diameter (HPD) and passed environmental testing. Reflectivity measurements at 8 keV on ERAFs with and without multilayer coatings show a 4.4 to 4.8 Å root mean square (rms) microroughness for correlation lengths ⩽15 μm. To reduce the dominant contribution of mirror assembly and large-scale distortion in the overall telescope HPD, we designed a figure metrology system and a new mounting technique. We describe a cylindrical metrology system built for fast axial and roundness figure measurement of hard x-ray conical optics. These developments lower cost and improve the optics performance of the HEFT (high-energy focusing telescope) and Constellation-X missions. © 2000 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers.