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Storage Shed for CPC

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#1 akulapanam

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 10:40 PM

I have a CPC 9.25 that I use for both visual and astrophotography. Lately I have been considering how speed up the time it takes to assemble the telescope/wedge and get shooting. I have seen several other folks use a plastic storage shed and scope buggy combination. However, I live in Dallas Texas and I'm concerned about possible scope damage from either a leaky shed in the rain or damage from the extreme summer heat. Has anyone tried this combination?

#2 Raginar

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 10:57 PM

You have a neighbor who did something similar:

http://www.cloudynig...5697636/page...

I believe he just built a shed that rolled away from his scope. You could easily make a small ROR that would do something similar though. Just depends on how much work you want to put into it.

Go check out the Sky Shed Yahoo! Group too. Not a ton of activity, but it'll help with your construction ideas.

Good luck!

#3 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:05 PM

First, I like to call it a "roll out" observatory :-)

I built one for my CPC 11. As the front of my house has a street light across the street, the back yard is the acceptable location. I have a steep hillside to the northeast in the back yard, with a short retaining wall on top of which I've installed a railing and paving stone deck. Since the skyglow is pretty fierce to the north east (LA Basin), the hillside blockage isn't a loss, it's a benefit :-) I have excellent views to the south, west, north and overhead.

Next was to find a storage shed that didn't have the strongest resemblence to a portapotty, big enough to have storage space, small enough to fit on the deck. The one that matched my criteria closest was the suncast BMS6550

http://www.suncast.c...x?id=675&pid=87

essentally 6ft wide, 5ft deep. Photo is attached showing the location and the "roll out" observatory. Note the white tarp stretched over the top, attached with bungee cords, to reflect sunlight off the roof. Cuts the interior temperature by about 20 deg at high noon. Tarp is outdoor rugged, and pretty cheap, available at

http://www.tarpsplus...ehitetarps.html

I recommend the 6x8 foot size

Now for the photo, and on to the next posting

BTW the "roll out" observatory is solar powered (note the solar panels in the upper left of photo)

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#4 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:12 PM

Here's a photo from the deck. The only problem I had with the shed, is the doors were bowed (one in, one out). To fix that I attached using toggle bolts, some spare aluminum rectangular extrusion to flex the doors straight. It also serves as a good place to anchor the lock hasp.

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#5 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:15 PM

Here's a shot with the doors open. Room enough inside for a table and chairs and the CPC 11. Note I'm a "suspenders and belt" kind of guy, so there's a cover over the scope, just in case of leaks (and I did have one this winter, so the cover paid for itself :-)

Note the white aluminum extrusions (left over from the fence railing) attached to the doors with toggle bolts (actually toggle nuts with bolts) to warp the doors straight.

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#6 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:20 PM

Here's a shot with the scope cover removed.

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#7 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:20 PM

And here's the scope rolled out on my own scope trolly, made of aluminum channel anodized Celestron Orange. Plans for the trolley are on cloudy nights here.

http://www.cloudynig...d=nexstargps...

With the scope rolled out, I can setup up my laptop on the table, deploy the chairs and if it's cold close the doors and stay comfy!

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#8 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:23 PM

I wired the inside with 12V DC from a solar panel + storage battery (visible up on the hillside in the first photo) with multiple sockets.

Yellow wire splices are from mcmaster-carr.

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#9 rigelsys

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 04:25 PM

And lastly, added a muffin fan and thermostat (both from mcmaster-carr) to pull air through on warm days.

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#10 jchaller

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 08:58 PM

Gotta love McMaster-Carr.

#11 allensellick

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 09:17 PM

Have you had any rain or wind? and if so how did it hold up? I really like the look of it but I am a worried about the thin walls. we get snow and wind and was wondering how well it would hold up.

thanks,
Allen

#12 rigelsys

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 01:35 PM

We've had rain (So Cal kind of rain that is) and lots of high winds (blowing about 30mph up our street today). Had one leak around scew holding roofing (in one place) solved with silicon caulk. Having the white tarp stretched over the top also helps prevent leaks.

The walls are doubled (blow molded resin) and quite rigid. Roof has a steel frame (see inside photos) All in all quite happy with construction. Only complaint was warping of the doors, which I reinforced to straight.

Have you had any rain or wind? and if so how did it hold up? I really like the look of it but I am a worried about the thin walls. we get snow and wind and was wondering how well it would hold up.

thanks,
Allen



#13 allensellick

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 08:52 PM

:jump:I real like what you have done. GREAT JOB

#14 Alex McConahay

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 09:39 PM

I think if you are going to be storing something outside, it would be great to have permanent polar alignment. This means the scope stays still and the roof/building rolls off. There are many ways to do this. My example is here:

http://alexastro.com...houseindex.html

You are not going to find many places consistently summertime hotter than my part of Southern California. (there are a few). And we do get rain sometimes. Cold is maybe down to freezing, a little below some nights. But I have never had any problems with the elements. We do not generally have humidity to worry about, but I am sure my equipment would be no worse off in my roll off than it is in a garage or whatever.

Alex

#15 rigelsys

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Posted 10 April 2013 - 12:31 PM

Agree on the pier, but I'm running in alt-az mode, so maintaing polar alighment is not required.

I considered a dome or roll-off roof or roll-off shed, but minimizing footprint was a consideration.

Love your roll-off solution, tho!


I think if you are going to be storing something outside, it would be great to have permanent polar alignment. This means the scope stays still and the roof/building rolls off. There are many ways to do this. My example is here:

http://alexastro.com...houseindex.html

You are not going to find many places consistently summertime hotter than my part of Southern California. (there are a few). And we do get rain sometimes. Cold is maybe down to freezing, a little below some nights. But I have never had any problems with the elements. We do not generally have humidity to worry about, but I am sure my equipment would be no worse off in my roll off than it is in a garage or whatever.

Alex








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