Return to the Cloudy Nights Telescope Reviews home pageAstronomics discounts for Cloudy Nights members
· Get a Cloudy Nights T-Shirt · Submit a Review / Article

Click here if you are having trouble logging into the forums

Privacy Policy | Please read our Terms of Service | Signup and Troubleshooting FAQ | Problems? PM a Red or a Green Gu… uh, User

Equipment Discussions >> Observatories

Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)
Greyhaven
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/11/04

Loc: Greater downtown Maine
Re: Well, every journey starts with a first step new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5679128 - 02/14/13 10:34 AM

That's a mighty fine first step you have there. Nice location too! Honestly one of the best designed observatories I've seen in a while. Enjoy.
Be Well
Grey


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rimcrazy
sage


Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Overgaard, AZ
A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5832481 - 04/30/13 02:34 PM

My son and I finished the pier and the preliminary assembly of the dome so we took it all up north to install it on the building.

Here are a few pics of the process:

The pier is 10' high to go from the concrete floor (12,000 lbs) to proper placement in the dome. It's a strut design made from 1/2" plate steel and 1/4" wall 2x4 box steel. The plates were cut from a 4x8 sheet on a CNC plasma cutter.

Here are the main plates:


Here are the support 2x4's and gussets:



Here is my son welding up the tower:



Here is the finished pier ready to head to powder coat:



My truck loaded with the finished pier and parts of the dome. My son had the rest of the dome in his truck.



Arriving at the observatory building in Overgaard:



I hired a crane to lift the pier and place it in the building. Poor guy, took about 20mins to navigate through the trees on my property to get to the open area where the building is located. Once there it only took about 5 mins to lift it and put it in place.



Up and over the building:



Pier down on the concrete:



As you can see from the picture above there is a 2'x2' round concrete pier that comes up from the floor. Originally I was going to go with a ROR design. With that, the existing pier would have been fine. Changing to a dome I needed to expand the concrete to a 5x5x3 block to provide for sufficient space for the larger pier. The central riser actually ended up being a good engineering addition as we bolted both to the floor and to the central pier. The center bolts put stress on the pier structure to essentially load the steel uprights making things far more rigid. In 20-20 hindsight it probably would have helped to make the internal gussets a bit larger but I believe what we have should work.

My son has an industrial Hilti concrete drill. This bad boy makes a 4" deep 9/16" hole in 8 seconds. It laughs at concrete.



There are 20 1/2" bolts. 12 on the bottom and 8 on the mid plate. We used mechanical impact bolts and filled the holes with bolt epoxy. On this point, again in 20-20 hindsight, we probably could have just use full thread blots with epoxy. Banging the bolts down into epoxy filled holes was not fun. That being said,...... I can safely say they are not going anywhere.



Every project of this size needs professional supervision. Mine was no different. Here are my foremen (a.k.a. Grandsons Gavin and Jacob)



After getting the pier in and down it was time to assemble the dome. Finishing the skirt, fixing the gaps and putting the ring stemwall was next. I will refrain from public executions but if you are considering getting a TI dome write me a PM and I will fill you in on The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. In short, I was able to fix all of the shortcoming and so far I believe it should work fine. Here is a shot of the complete ring:



Here is the building with the dome and back shutter plate:



Here is the finished building:



This is a shot looking down at the top of the pier. There is a custom adapter plate that will be flat bolted to the top. That plate will have precision drilled/tapped holes to fit my current Meade Wedge mount and a hopefully future AP 1600 GTO mount.



Here is a shot looking up from the floor:



This is a view out the slot looking NW at level just above where the scope will be located.



Edited by rimcrazy (04/30/13 03:19 PM)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Starman27
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 01/29/06

Loc: Illinois, Iowa
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5833831 - 05/01/13 08:33 AM

That is an amazing pier! Great workmanship.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pollux556
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 12/14/08

Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: Starman27]
      #5833895 - 05/01/13 09:14 AM

Quote:

That is an amazing pier! Great workmanship.




Absolutely nice !


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
MHamburg
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 06/21/06

Loc: Brooklyn, NY/Berkshires, MA
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: Pollux556]
      #5833941 - 05/01/13 09:40 AM

Your son is your hero!
Michael


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
stmguy
sage


Reged: 10/11/12

Loc: Western NH
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: MHamburg]
      #5834111 - 05/01/13 11:10 AM

A busy 2 weeks for sure, looks great!

Norm


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
EddWen
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 04/26/08

Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: stmguy]
      #5837663 - 05/03/13 05:06 AM

That is an impressive pier. I think it should have an A-P 3600 to cap it off. Then the possibilities are vast

Hope to see you soon. I feel I have a ball-and-chain on here in SoCal.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rimcrazy
sage


Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Overgaard, AZ
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: MHamburg]
      #5837704 - 05/03/13 07:00 AM

Quote:

Your son is your hero!
Michael




Yes he is. I'm quite proud of him. He was a challenge growing up but he's turned into a fine young man. This is our second "major" project we've done together. I'm a fused glass artist as well and a few years back we built a large kiln to support my art. It's quite the beast also and still in active use.

Edd, looking forward to seeing you when you get back. I will be bringing up my modest LX200 for the moment. Not quite an AP 3600. For the moment I'll have to worship from afar for toys like that.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
csa/montana
Den Mama
*****

Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5837971 - 05/03/13 10:10 AM

That's an amazing pier! Beautiful observatory that you will enjoy so much!

All the hard work is worthwhile to achieve this observatory!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
seryddwr
Innocent Bystander
*****

Reged: 02/19/10

Loc: La-la land.
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: csa/montana]
      #5838535 - 05/03/13 02:51 PM

That is a epic pier. Sure puts my welding skill to same. Admittedly that's not hard, as I'm not terribly skilled, but he does wonders with a welder.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rimcrazy
sage


Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Overgaard, AZ
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: seryddwr]
      #5838830 - 05/03/13 05:56 PM

Quote:

That is a epic pier. Sure puts my welding skill to same. Admittedly that's not hard, as I'm not terribly skilled, but he does wonders with a welder.




Don't feel bad. He's a certified aircraft welder. Before he got his degree he worked at Honeywell (use to be Garrett) making APU engines. He's certified MIG, TIG and use to weld not only stainless but exotic metals such as inconel, hastelloy and magnesium. He was headed down a not so good path in life in his teen years. He found welding and honestly, speaking as a father, it saved him. He really excels at it.

But I digress from astronomy. I will pass on all of your kind words to him. I'm sure he will appreciate it as I certainly do. Thanks.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Goodchild
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 12/31/08

Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5839138 - 05/03/13 09:48 PM

Now that's what I'm talkin' about!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rigel123
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 06/29/09

Loc: SW Ohio
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5840429 - 05/04/13 04:56 PM

Well cuz, that is one impressive observatory! You should get that published somewhere when you get it totally completed!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rimcrazy
sage


Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Overgaard, AZ
Re: A Very busy 2 weeks new [Re: rigel123]
      #5841569 - 05/05/13 12:25 PM

Quote:

Well cuz, that is one impressive observatory! You should get that published somewhere when you get it totally completed!




Actually there is a plan for that. Most likely by end of the summer. I'll keep you posted.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: 1 | 2 | (show all)


Extra information
9 registered and 11 anonymous users are browsing this forum.

Moderator:  Christopher Erickson, Joe C, Mr Greybush 

Print Thread

Forum Permissions
      You cannot start new topics
      You cannot reply to topics
      HTML is disabled
      UBBCode is enabled


Thread views: 3464

Jump to

CN Forums Home


Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics