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New Sketching Easel

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#1 Chopin

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 09:59 PM

I was feeling "tinker-frisky" after a 22 mile 38ºF bike ride this morning. So I pilfered the basement, dusted off the power tools, and came up with this:

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#2 Asbytec

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 11:10 PM

I like the eyepiece tray. :)

Not bad for a tool dust off project, Jason. Not bad, at all. Kind of feeling envious, actually. It's nicer that my clipboard in the lap method.

This is for your 10" Newt, I am guessing. So, you stand when observing, then saunter over and place a few sketch marks. Grab an eyepiece. That's so cool.

#3 stray1

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 01:54 AM

Hi Jason,

Nice work! Like Norme, I'm a bit envious of your handiwork :D My method is to use a clipboard with a red flashlight while pencils roll off my lawn table and clatter across the driveway. It's a wonder I get anything done.

22 miles on a bike? Sheesh, I thought I was doing good by walking a couple of miles last night under cloudy skies.

:grin:

-stray-

#4 Asbytec

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 02:52 AM

Exercise? I do one sit up every morning. Sometimes two.

#5 Chopin

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 06:51 AM

I like the eyepiece tray. :)

Not bad for a tool dust off project, Jason. Not bad, at all. Kind of feeling envious, actually. It's nicer that my clipboard in the lap method.

This is for your 10" Newt, I am guessing. So, you stand when observing, then saunter over and place a few sketch marks. Grab an eyepiece. That's so cool.


Thanks, Norme. I used it last night with my 110mm. The lunar sketch is worthless, but the ergonomics of the easel solved all of my issues. The angle is perfect, just enough of a lean for me to rest my forearm while sketching, but upright enough to mimic the angle the view I get from looking into the eyepiece. The legs are adjustable, and I used it while sitting. The legs came off of an old Meade 50mm achromat tripod that my father-in-law picked up from a yard sale.

A side story on the 50mm junk scope: dad buys one almost yearly during spring yard sale season. I always cringe. He gets the bug and hopes "this" will be the good one. Nope...they never are. The diminutive plastic mounts are rickety, the eyepieces are junky, the focusers too coarse. He would just get peeved with how awful they were and gave them to me. Finally, two years ago, I had enough of his shenanigans. I ordered a Celestron 70mm achromat, pulled it apart, flocked it, baffled it, painted it white, and built a medium duty wooden alt-az mount for it. (THE SCOPE) Then I grabbed a nice wide field from Orion Clearance that gives a 2mm exit pupil, packaged 'em up, and gave it to him as a christmas gift. He uses it all the time. :grin:


I digress. At any rate, the seating position for me is perfect. I essentially sit in one spot, and position the easel 90º to the eyepiece at the scope. Look left in the eyepiece, look right to the easel, left to the eyepiece, back to the easel, etc... Change magnifications? No problem, the eyepieces are right there, no need to get up from my seat. Need a different pencil? Swaps are in an arm's reach at the top. In my mind, as I was building it, I was looking for a pragmatic approach to solve all of my gripes with past sessions:

1) clipboard in lap
2) flashlight in mouth
3) eyepieces in case on ground
4) pencils over my ears

Part of my reasoning for the stable surface presumably comes from my intention to complete (or mostly complete) the finished sketch at the eyepiece. That is, as opposed to a rough sketch that is designed to be redrawn. Although I imagine it would be advantageous for rough sketching, too. Just having the freedom to grab various eyepieces and pencils without leaving your viewing position proved to be exceedingly useful last evening.

Oh, and don't even think about asking me to post my lunar image...pure putrescence! :lol:

#6 Asbytec

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 07:34 AM

So, you sit and sketch. Even better.

I'll post my horrendous lunar sketch, if you'll post yours. Wanna dare?

Flashlight in mouth, yep! :lol: Now, though, it hangs around my neck. That was a quantum improvement. One pencil, dull as my sister's husband. Check. But, need a place for my glasses, they come on and off between sketching and observing.

With Jupiter on the zenith, viewing from the rear of a CAT (you know what I mean) can be, well, kind of like the hunched back lady doing the dishes. She wears a mask...kind of like that with the tripod fully collapsed. Got a smaller chair, then my knobby knees protrude upward into my chin. Maybe some comfortable arrangement would work better, extending the tripod legs for one. The mount is pretty stable, I just like it rock solid.

Despite all that, my biggest gripe is the neighbor's security light. It's so bright, often I cannot see the finder's cross hair. He's kind enough to kill it most evenings.

You have a nice set up, Jason, with one eye on the scope and you easel within easy arm's reach. And you did quite a nice job, like on your dad's refractor. It will be interesting so see how the design helps you, surely it will. And interesting to see if it helps to complete a sketch in real time.

Well, thanks for the inspiration. Gotta get me one of those, I guess. Or something similar. Hey! Christmas is coming. :)

#7 Chopin

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 07:42 AM

Hi Jason,

Nice work! Like Norme, I'm a bit envious of your handiwork :D My method is to use a clipboard with a red flashlight while pencils roll off my lawn table and clatter across the driveway. It's a wonder I get anything done.


Thanks, Stray. You've mentioned at least one reason that I built the easel.


22 miles on a bike? Sheesh, I thought I was doing good by walking a couple of miles last night under cloudy skies.

:grin:

-stray-


:lol: I've been at road cycling for about a year now. Last November I struggled to do a 3 mile ride up the hill I live on. Two months ago I completed my first Metric Century ride (about 62 miles). It doesn't take much to build stamina on a bike. That said, I'm certainly not doing it at a Tour de France pace. :grin:

BTW, better that your pencils clatter across the driveway and not your eyepieces... ;)

#8 JimPie

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:36 AM

Jason,
I like when people think out of the box and put useful things together. Looks cool too!

#9 Chopin

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 12:17 PM

Jason,
I like when people think out of the box and put useful things together. Looks cool too!


Thanks, Jim.

#10 AdirondackAstro

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 05:50 PM

That looks better than one you can buy at a store. Better than my torn-out, printed-on paper inside of the notebook they were tore out from method

#11 niteskystargazer

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 01:17 PM

Jason,

Nice Sketching Easel, now we'll be seeing more sketches from you in the future :).

CS,KLU,

:thanx:,

Tom

#12 frank5817

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 10:45 PM

Jason,

Many good sketchers use them. I have one but rarely use it.
It is just one more item to take out to the telescope and I am comfortable with a large hand held clipboard. I have used a mechanical drawing table that is fully adjustable that can be set at any angle but it is heavy to move.
Your homemade easel looks very functional and easy to move about.

Frank :)

#13 Andrev

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Posted 28 November 2012 - 11:43 PM

Jason.

Wow, this is really nice and artistic. Looks professional for sure. A beautiful setup. Like others, I like the eyepiece's tray and the lamp too. But I can't imagine this in my POD !!!

Andre.






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