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new space heater idea

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#1 gillmj24

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 04:56 AM

I'm more concerned with humidity than temperature. My mount was dripping wet inside my dome this foggy morning. Has anyone used one of these spot heaters? I think if I pointed up to my black lined dome that would re-radiate heat downward and more evenly, I hope enough to prevent things from getting soaked this winter.

http://www.heater-ho...duct/ms-09.aspx

#2 roscoe

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 07:49 AM

Yeah, they'll work. That design has been around for many many years, they're reliable. It is a radiant heater, in that it is somewhat like a flashlight, instead of light, it projects a beam of heat toward an object. It will warm that object, and somewhat the air in general, but not warm a space as well as the little cube heaters that have fans in them to circulate air past heated elements. Another option for warming a space is electric heaters that look like old steam radiators, they heat the air convectively without fans, so will heat a space silently and breeze-less-ly. They all cost about a dime an hour to operate.....
Russ

#3 gillmj24

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 08:40 AM

What is better to keep your mount from dripping? I'm even starting to get some rust in my expensive stainless steel counterweights :(

#4 roscoe

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 09:37 AM

How about a cover over the mount with a smaller heater - perhaps even a light bulb in some sort of fixture to prevent it touching the cover - under the cover, so to keep the scope and mount warmer/above the dew point?
R

#5 gillmj24

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 10:44 AM

I brought everything irreplaceable inside before sandy and just yesterday got around to outright stuff back. I left some CW out and they were dripping as was the ATS portable pier. The pier is painted and wont rust but I left the CWs out in the humidity for two weeks. I might need a bigger cover I might just use an old blanket for now. I will try a small <800W heater first that is less likely to start a fire since it will already have a thermostat.

#6 csa/montana

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 11:10 AM

I might need a bigger cover I might just use an old blanket for now. I will try a small <800W heater first that is less likely to start a fire since it will already have a thermostat.


How about this, for under a cover?

Link

Along with a TeleGizmos cover.

#7 jaddbd

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 01:24 PM

I have a couple of those dry rods and they work well. I actually put 1 inside my parked ota (the baffles hold it in place) after a night with a tee-shirt cover of imaging and there is never any dew on the mirror in the morning even when the outside of the scope is covered in dew. Putting a rod (I use 2 under cover) under your mount cover works well night after night of non-use (in a shed), but after a night of exposure to the ellements, they won't "dry" your equipment.

John D
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#8 gillmj24

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 01:38 PM

Thanks I will try it.

#9 JustinO

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 01:43 PM

Go to this web site, put your zip code in.
When it refreshes for your zip, click on the "hourly weather graph" which is down and to the right.

http://forecast.weat...95.689018499...

It has a "dewpoint" graph. As long as your mount is warmer than the dewpoint, you should be okay. If you have a source of moisture in your observatory, you might have a higher local dewpoint -- if you have bare masonry or concrete, you should seal it.

I put a low wattage light bulb in equipment I'm worried about. It's just enough to keep the temperature of the equipment above the dewpoint.

#10 gillmj24

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 03:13 PM

My floor is open since I am on a raised wood deck next to my house. Far from ideal but it was that or no Obs at all.

#11 Tel

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:19 AM

Under predominantly damp, UK weather conditions, I can keep humidty levels to a minimum and thus my 'scopes and kit dry in my ca.8.5 cubic metre, (ca. 290 cubic feet), dome by making use of a £26 (ca. $40) 1000 Watt fan heater timed to switch itself on for quarter of an hour every hour from between 7:00pm and 8:00am.

My only slight problem is that although the concrete base of the dome is covered by both a damp course menbrane plus an interlocking polyurethane mat flooring, some condensate still builds above the membrane, presumable as a result of damp air contacting the cold concrete area as a whole.

Until now I have had the heater situated about two feet off the ground but aim to set it at floor level to see whether this effects a cure.

Best regards,
Tel

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#12 MRNUTTY

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 07:58 PM

Another option for warming a space is electric heaters that look like old steam radiators, they heat the air convectively without fans, so will heat a space silently and breeze-less-ly. They all cost about a dime an hour to operate.....
Russ


This is what I use when I need a space heater. They're light, portable, and don't give off any smell. This is what I was going to move out to the observatory.

#13 gillmj24

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 07:40 AM

My dri-rod arrived last night and I also bought a vornado personal heater for 30 dollars and a mechanical appliance timer that I set to cycle the power every half hour. Unlike most heaters whose low and high are 750 and 1500 Watts, the personal heater (at bed bath and beyond not the big home improvement Mega stores...) is 375 and 750. It does not have a thermostat. My thermometer this morning says 40F inside the dome (it's 35 outside) and humidity according to my weather station is at 70% instead of going up to 90% like it did a few mornings ago. It was reporting 75% humidity last night before putting the heater in.

The dri rod says it gets to 125F. The instructions weren't right either I had to reverse the wires to get it working. I didnt use it last night since it took a while to get it working. Not sure why they cant just wire the olug and test it for you but ok. I wouldn't put it in my scope at that temperature so I'll try to put it inside or under the cover somehow.

I was using the low setting and my stuff is dry. So far so good. Might need the 750W setting if it gets really cold, but when it's 20 here it usually isn't as humid as when it's just above freezing like it is now.

#14 Geo.

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 10:00 AM

Don't discount how much heat an incandesant light bulb can put out. We had a few Farmall tractors that had magneto ignitions. The bakelight would absorb moisture and short the spark. Dad would secure a 100 watt bulb next to the mag and that would keep it dry, even at winter temperatures.

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#15 wolfman_4_ever

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 05:48 PM

Your in an observatory... enclosed space.. you have humiditiy.. use a dehumidifier..

light bulbs and dri rods.. jebus...

and where do people get the idea that heat will get rid of moisture in the air that is trapped inside? Is it suppose to evaporate? Evaporate to the top of your OTA and dome..
All you are doing is preventing dew by increasing the temperature. not remedying the situation by removing the water in the air..

KISS.. Keep it simple ......

#16 gillmj24

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:30 AM

Last time I kept my basement dehumidifier on during the winter (60F in the basement?) The coils froze up. Its 30F in the dome now and humidity 70%. Not 90% and no dew. Warmer air prevents dew by lowering relative humidity if not absolute water content.

Jebus indeed....

#17 jaddbd

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 02:26 PM

Your in an observatory... enclosed space.. you have humiditiy.. use a dehumidifier..

light bulbs and dri rods.. jebus...

and where do people get the idea that heat will get rid of moisture in the air that is trapped inside? Is it suppose to evaporate? Evaporate to the top of your OTA and dome..
All you are doing is preventing dew by increasing the temperature. not remedying the situation by removing the water in the air..

KISS.. Keep it simple ......


Your right... Dry Rods and light bulbs will not effect the humidity level - however, they can be used to keep the tempurature (of optics anyway) above the dew point to keep dew from forming - and it does work. Trying to de-humidify a non-insulated/unsealed roll-off (mine is 15x11) would be a losing and costly battle, at least in my case.

John D

#18 wolfman_4_ever

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 07:54 PM

and in about 2-3 years when you pull your motor covers and wonder why all the gears/pins are rusted, you'll be screaming "Jebus, Mary and Joseph!" :foreheadslap:

So you open your dome for a night of "exploring" and bring all that nice water vapor that is trapped inside the nooks and cranies right down to the dew point.. wash, rinse and repeat for a few years.. :foreheadslap:

I guess you are keeping those dry rods and light bulbs on all night long during a session? Oh that's right.. you have few hour cool down session so drip drip drip.. lol.. :foreheadslap:

This is not lucky charms.. The water vapor does not "magically" disappear.. :foreheadslap:

In fact dew will probably form faster since you just keep it trapped indoors.. :foreheadslap:

But whatever.. you young whipper snappers will do what you want to do..

Thank You, Come Again!

#19 wolfman_4_ever

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 07:56 PM

Your in an observatory... enclosed space.. you have humiditiy.. use a dehumidifier..

light bulbs and dri rods.. jebus...

and where do people get the idea that heat will get rid of moisture in the air that is trapped inside? Is it suppose to evaporate? Evaporate to the top of your OTA and dome..
All you are doing is preventing dew by increasing the temperature. not remedying the situation by removing the water in the air..

KISS.. Keep it simple ......


Your right... Dry Rods and light bulbs will not effect the humidity level - however, they can be used to keep the tempurature (of optics anyway) above the dew point to keep dew from forming - and it does work. Trying to de-humidify a non-insulated/unsealed roll-off (mine is 15x11) would be a losing and costly battle, at least in my case.

John D


So you'll spend $60 on a dry rod and light bulbs but nothing to seal and insulate your roll off... interesting..

Do you heat your roll off by burning money in a firepit?
:foreheadslap:

#20 Wmacky

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 08:13 PM

:gotpopcorn:

#21 jaddbd

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Posted 29 November 2012 - 10:53 PM

and in about 2-3 years when you pull your motor covers and wonder why all the gears/pins are rusted, you'll be screaming "Jebus, Mary and Joseph!" :foreheadslap:

So you open your dome for a night of "exploring" and bring all that nice water vapor that is trapped inside the nooks and cranies right down to the dew point.. wash, rinse and repeat for a few years.. :foreheadslap:

I guess you are keeping those dry rods and light bulbs on all night long during a session? Oh that's right.. you have few hour cool down session so drip drip drip.. lol.. :foreheadslap:

This is not lucky charms.. The water vapor does not "magically" disappear.. :foreheadslap:

In fact dew will probably form faster since you just keep it trapped indoors.. :foreheadslap:

But whatever.. you young whipper snappers will do what you want to do..

Thank You, Come Again!


I have a 10 year old Losmandy that has been out for 3 years, no rust no problems - runs better now than when I got it. AP -no issues. There are a couple of those running outdoors in Antartica so I doubt my conditions pose much of a problem. They stay dry in the building when not in use. That goes for the computers and electronics/cameras also. The only condensation I get when not in use get is on the counterweights, and that is only occasionally. Scopes with covers on - no issues. After a session there is dew or frost on things, but that of coarse is unavoidable. Put a rod in the OTA to keep it from dewing up after a session, towel down everything, put towels on top of everything, then towel again in the next morning. Also, keeping a small fan going helps. I also take it upon myself to take stuff apart and maintain it. When the extended forcast is completely ridiculous, I take gear indoors.

JD

#22 jaddbd

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 12:09 AM


So you'll spend $60 on a dry rod and light bulbs but nothing to seal and insulate your roll off... interesting..

Do you heat your roll off by burning money in a firepit?
:foreheadslap: [/quote]

Yeah, It is sealed nicely at all the contact points - completely weather proof, and had no issues with 60-70mph gusts last month (my house had a shredded roof) but it is not insulated - and I have vents with fans in side of the roof structure. I personally do not have a moisture problem. Dew is far less in session on a raised wooden floor with four walls than it is out in the open. I don't need dew heaters on the refractors. I had much more of a moisture problem with the gear before the structure (setting up in the yard and bringing stuff in). Everything was always saturated.

Why would you insulate the roll off? The idea is too be at ambient. My control center is 75' away in my office.

JD

#23 csa/montana

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 12:11 AM

It's up to each individual to use whatever works for them in their situation; whether others agree or not. Some say do not insulate a ROR so that it stays close to the ambient temperature; others swear by full insulation. Again, whatever works for each, is the best system for the individual.

#24 jaddbd

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 01:06 AM

Carol,

I should have said "why would I insulate the roll-off" (not the generic you) in my last comment. In my case, I mainly image remotely so ambient was my goal. Controlled ventilation has worked well for me.

John D

#25 Odin

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 07:42 AM

:gotpopcorn: :gotpopcorn:






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