Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

Post by admin »

I should point out that there have had to be several tweaks to the design since the final post in the original thread :

* The cladding panels shrank considerably as they dried out in hot weather and needed to be removed and re-fitted closer together

* Neither WIFI or powerline ethernet turned out to be reliable or fast enough, so I ran Cat5E out via the garage.

* Very hot in summer - paint the outside in a nearly white colour using a light cream 'garden shades' paint. This also helps stop the cladding from taking up water when it rains

* Guttering under the edge of the roof over the door to reduce the amount of water falling on the step

* A dehumidifier running on low to keep the humidity down in winter

* One of the bearer timbers rotting due to coming into contact with the soil - repair with wood hardener and dig away soil from adjacent to the bearer and replace with gravel

* Rats digging soil and compost into the space under the floor between the bearers - needed to lift the floor, cut the deck boards, dig out the spoil and also dig more clearance under the floor to make space for a cat to be able to reach all the underfloor areas - this should help dissuade the rats from coming back and doing it again.

I will try to post some more up-to-date pictures shortly.

cheers,

Robin
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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

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As promised, some more up-to-date obsy photos...

Here you can see the white paint, the guttering over the door and also the weather station mounted on a mast on the roll off roof.
PXL_20210726_184851716.jpg
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Inside, I currently multi-mount refractors on the NEQ6. The PC now sits beside the bottom of the mount to allow for USB cable runs to be as short as possible (no hubs). Cable management is an ogoing challenge!
PXL_20210726_185010499.jpg
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The side of the observatory has a shelf for monitors, keyboard, mouse, etc. These can cope with longer cable runs and a USB hub and still work reliably. Unfortunately the observatory has become a bit of a store for rarely used bits and pieces (both astronomy related and otherwise).
PXL_20210726_185033309.jpg
PXL_20210726_185033309.jpg (241.68 KiB) Viewed 227 times
cheers,

Robin
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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

Post by umasscrew39 »

Excellent build, Robin!

I see you decided on the side by side mount plate vs. piggybacked like what I did. I've heard the side by side is better for the mount but much harder to balance. Anyway, great job and I like comparing what others have done to my ROR which was built on the roof of my 4-car garage. I spent a small fortune on it but I regret it now due to so many cloudy nights and the increased lights (like all around the world), with the latter making more of a NB-only imager nowadays. Also, an unfortunate error by the architect (required to get a building permit in my area) made the design such that I need to use a ladder or scaffold to do adjustments to the scopes as no space was left to build a platform to be used as a floor closer to the equipment. This is what has created such challenges for me to change anything or if problems arise which often happens like loose parts, etc.

Congrats again on a well-designed ROR observatory!

Regards,
Bruce
Last edited by umasscrew39 on Tue Jul 27, 2021 12:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

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Hi Bruce,

thanks for the kind comments - it was a fun project to design and build :)

Side-by-side mounting does add a bit of complexity to the balancing as you have to get the balance right for the dec axis in both the home position (sliding the side-by-side framework left/right) and in the 90 degree position (sliding the scopes forward/back) as well as balancing the RA axis. It's not too bad though. There is actually just room for a 200mm camera lens in a central position between the two scopes, but I haven't got around to putting it in place yet. I have a Pentax K 200/4 SMC ready for this which should give good widefield views.

cheers,

Robin
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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

Post by umasscrew39 »

Hi Robin

By the way, your pictures inspired me to get a weather station which I contemplated in the past but never pulled the trigger to get one :D . And I would love to see the 200mm camera lens in a central position between the two scopes!

It would be nice to see some of your images if you are willing to share.

Take care,
Bruce
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Re: Observatory Build [Archived from astronomyshed.co.uk]

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Hi Bruce,

funnily enough I rarely get any really good images - when I do get out in the observatory I'm usually in 'software testing' mode rather than 'patient imaging' mode... I will be trying out new features, making notes on usability, trying to break things, flitting from target to target. This has actually become worse as SharpCap has become more of a focus for me over the last few years... back in the early days of the observatory I used to actually capture some halfway decent images!

Hope you have fun with the weather station :)

cheers,

Robin
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