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Can a SkyShed POD Realistically fit a 14" GEM?

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#1 Spacetravelerx

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 02:01 AM

Hello All,

I am still waiting for the POD MAX, but...

We are very tempted by the SkyShed POD 5XL.

So the big question is - can the SkyShed POD 5XL fit a 14" LX850 on a pier? I know with the tripod it will take up the entire floor.

Is it realistic or is it very tight? Anyone out there with a 14" GEM mounted telescope in a SkyShed POD? I have seen 1 video, but I am not 100% convinced...

#2 Magellan

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 06:47 AM

I don't see why not. I was able to get my 8" Newt with 80mm guidescope and still have room to spare. the girth is 18" since they are mounted side by side.

It will be pretty tight though. I can still move around and I am not a small guy. Mine was also mounted on a tripod.

If you want space, wait for the POD MAX. According to Wayne they are almost caught up on POD orders. his number one priority right now is getting the MAX going.

#3 Magellan

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 07:57 AM

Found this. http://www.youtube.c...h?v=1N8O09Lrhkc its in French but you can see how tight it is with a C14

#4 Bob Griffiths

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 11:49 AM

Wait for the Pod Max or the larger 11.5 foot Exploradome.. if you do not want a roll off

Bob G.

#5 tadpoletoo

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 03:08 PM

I have a 14 in. lx 200 on a wedge in a 7.5 ft sirius dome and room for not much else. If you are a visual viewer and plan on company you may want a little more.

#6 Spacetravelerx

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 01:31 AM

Wait for the Pod Max or the larger 11.5 foot Exploradome.. if you do not want a roll off

Bob G.


Bob - Yeah I am on the wait list for a POD Max, but we were then debating about the SkyShed POD. We really need room for myself, the kids and guests. And of course room for all the equipment, Macintosh servers, desks, cameras, etc.

Magellan - yes, I saw the video before. Yes, a tight fit, lol.

Too bad the SkyShed POD doesn't come in a 10' model...


Temporarily I am stuck with setting the telescope outside with a Telegizmos 365 cover for long, safe weather stretches. We will get more of that in the fall after the monsoon season is done in New Mexico.

In the mean time we will tough it out waiting for the POD Max, though I might have an opportunity with a used observatory from the local high school (they no longer use it). If we go for the POD Max, we anticipate installation in the Spring of 2014 at the very earliest. Who knows how long the wait list is...

#7 Starhawk

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 09:51 AM

SkyShed PODs are pretty cramped. The 8' exploradome's volume would work better. Best of all would be a ROR. And I have finally found the ultimate ROR tracks and wheels- I'm very excited about that part- they solve the degree of freedom problem and bolt down flat without little doohickeys welded on.

In NM, I would be concerned for the same reason as Tucson- heat buildup in the plastic dome. Long story short, the dome is semi-transparent to the solar radiation spectrum and opaque to the IR re-radiation of stuff inside. Plastic stuff comes to Tucson to end it all, quickly.

I suggest an attempt to avoid this can be made using solar tek white reflective roof coating. Yes, your observatory will be really white, but expensive gear won't have to endure 80F daily thermal cycles.

-Rich

#8 Spacetravelerx

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 10:44 AM

SkyShed PODs are pretty cramped. The 8' exploradome's volume would work better. Best of all would be a ROR. And I have finally found the ultimate ROR tracks and wheels- I'm very excited about that part- they solve the degree of freedom problem and bolt down flat without little doohickeys welded on.

In NM, I would be concerned for the same reason as Tucson- heat buildup in the plastic dome. Long story short, the dome is semi-transparent to the solar radiation spectrum and opaque to the IR re-radiation of stuff inside. Plastic stuff comes to Tucson to end it all, quickly.

I suggest an attempt to avoid this can be made using solar tek white reflective roof coating. Yes, your observatory will be really white, but expensive gear won't have to endure 80F daily thermal cycles.

-Rich



The heat is a MAJOR worry for me. I was looking at covers for the dome, though the solar tek sounds good too. I was also going to add A/C AND use the Telegizmos cover for added measure.

The 8' Explorerdome does look workable. The POD MAX looks great, but our concern is it is TOO big.

If we did ROR, I really want it to match the Adobe styling of our home, and I don't know how doable that is or at least make it aesthetically pleasing. What is your source for the tracks and wheels for the ROR?

#9 Starhawk

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 12:03 PM

The heat is no kidding scary. And as you know, it isn't absolute temp which destroys electronics; it's temperature excursion fatigue.

There is no reason a ROR can't look like an adobe. I have actually been thinking the track supports should be a pergola or other ramada type sunshade (dual function).

The tracks and whees: garden railway (yeah, forehead smacker, there). Railroads had to solve the two-side degree of freedom problem long ago. Best of all, the garden railway track bolts down on flat surfaces as-is.

From talking with them the 4" wheels will support 200 lbs each. The track would be continuously supported, and cross braces to control spacing are the rafters for the porch roof or pergola.

Best of all, it wouldn't be obvious this was an observatory with this feature.

http://cannonballltd.com/

Alternatively, you could get a 20' mobile mini office and do this with a sliding roof section, and stucco the outside to make it match an adobe look.

-Rich

#10 EddWen

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 12:12 PM

I have an 8'x 8' observatory in SoCal and a 12'x 12' in Arizona. Both with RORs.

The 8'x'8' is because it was all I could fit into a corner of the lot with easements, et al. With a NexStar 11 on a wedge, things were awkward depending where the scope was pointed, even though I had off-set the pier center to keep the scope movement range centered in the space. I've since eliminated the wedge and it is tolerable. I observe sitting on a wheeled variable height lab chair. I need room to wheel it to the eyepiece location whilst sitting on it. If there are other people visiting, they usually wait in the doorway when I reposition the scope.

My 12'x 12' in Arizona works better, originally with a 155/f7 refractor with more eyepiece excursion than the SCT. I have since replaced the refractor with a Mak with about the same eyepiece excursion, so things are still good.

Note, in both I only put shelving in the corners to maximize central space. I cannot imagine using a desk.

So, I would recommend that you not use anything less than 12'x 12'. And I recommend a pier.

A 14" on a GEM takes up a lot of available space. And using a tripod will make things very difficult for you and guests to move around. Good place to stub your toe in the dark.

I'd also suggest a ROR rather than a dome. Guests can see more of the sky while waiting for a turn at the scope. After all, we want them looking up, right?

Or, with your fondness for video gear, you could build a small outside sitting/viewing area with a huge video display and sidebar the object notes.

Here a link to the AZ observatory.

http://www.cloudynig...2778209/page...

#11 sydney

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 01:03 PM

My Exploradome doesn't get hot inside even in 90+ temps. It has the black interior dome. My storage shed gets really hot, but not the dome. Can't speak about the PODS.

I have a AP900 mount and switch scopes around. When I use my 12" SCT it is a bit tighter than I would like in the 8' round building. OK for one or for imaging.

#12 Starhawk

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 11:54 PM

NY has dim sunlight and low temps compared to the southwest because the water vapor in the air absorbs sunlight and moderates temperatures. What things do out east is therefore quite different from the desert.

-Rich

#13 Ed Wiley

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Posted 26 July 2013 - 10:17 AM

I have a C11 and Royce 8" DK in my three-bay Pod mounted on a G11 GEM. Two comments. (1) The fit is tight but very useable, I just had to get use to how to move around the observatory. (2) With a GEM of this size the shelf (PZT) is a necessity. I cannot reach anywhere near the zenith without the shelf. I don't have a problem with this needed accessory but if you get a Pod and use a GEM I suggest ordering the shelf at the same time you order the Pod.

Oh, BTW, they are not both on the mount at the same time.

Ed

#14 mistyridge

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 01:35 AM

My POD has a white dome that gets about 20 degrees above ambient in during the day. This summer it got up to 134 degrees when we hit 110 in the shade. Nothing is stored in it during the summer as a result. I use the POD in the fall, winter and early spring.

#15 *skyguy*

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 06:14 AM

Here's a listing on my local CL (not mine)... with pictures ... featuring a SkyShed POD with a Celestron 14" SCT on a GEM. Hmmm ... asking $5000 ... almost tempted! However, it does look very crowded! :(

SkyShed POD and 14" SCT

#16 Midnight Dan

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 06:54 AM

That DOES look like a good deal! New prices:

C14: $5000
POD: $300 (shipped)
CGE Mount $3500 (?)
Hyperstar $1400

... and it's not too far from me. Too bad I already have my POD on order.

Main problem with this setup is, as skyguy says, it's crowded. The POD shown, without any bays, seems a poor choice for this scope & mount. Adding bays would've allow the main POD area to be used for just the scope/mount and observer, and the bays for everything else to keep it out of the way.

-Dan

#17 PhilCo126

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 10:18 AM

When will the Skyshed POD MAX become available ?

#18 piaras

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 08:36 PM

When will the Skyshed POD MAX become available ?


You will have to ask Wayne. He will have a wall panel at Starfest this weekend and the door panel is under construction. Seems that the Max will be late in the year or next year?
Pierre






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