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 | 3 | (show all)
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Morning Calm Observatory
      #5592040 - 12/28/12 12:41 AM Attachment (224 downloads)

OK, 'bout time I come out of lurking mode and give some current views of my Madison County, Virginia Code approved Morning Calm Observatory.
This labor of love was designed and constructed entirely by me with my Wife spotting/assisting on occasion. Sure, I'm needing more help as I get older... Also the trusses and metal shop work were ordered, prefabricated and delivered on site. This was designed as a 20'x24' Roll-off-Roof observatory for visual use and Astronomy Outreach (including 60amp/240V service, 6'x20' warm room, 2ea 6'wide inward swinging windows on the southward facing wall, 3'x3'raised independent support platform and a 20'x16'step down integrated decking). This effort was based on years of personal thought and hundreds of Cloudy Night posters with their many and varied forum comments and ideas integrated into the final design/build. (Really though, when is an observatory EVER completed?)
For a foundation, I decided on a wood platform structure verses concrete to preclude localized seeing issues. My 20" box fan is a GREAT equalizer for any remaining stray thermal differences! The independent support platform was built separate from the 20'x24' structure. Vibration is minimal, not ZERO though.
The roof is currently not motorized and is simple enough to pull open and close by ropes using my body weight. (OK, point of order, I'm only 56 and 230lbs @ 6'4" but I did use extra care with an Egyptian water trick!)
This attached picture is a current view. Main house to the left, Observatory to the right. An easy walk out the basement doors. Although not in any Homeowners Association, I did follow typical architecture control committee guidelines and common sense to match structures.
Getting late, more to follow.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592046 - 12/28/12 12:51 AM Attachment (165 downloads)

Another picture looking SSW showing the deck and topography. At the south end there is actually storage space underneath the observatory.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592051 - 12/28/12 12:56 AM Attachment (143 downloads)

And one more this evening looking ESE with the roof rolled back.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
rockethead26
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/21/09

Loc: Arizona, USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592223 - 12/28/12 07:47 AM

Wow! Beautiful observatory. Really nicely done.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Aquarist
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 08/27/12

Loc: Illinois
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: rockethead26]
      #5592252 - 12/28/12 08:20 AM

Gorgeous. I cannot believe you did this yourself!! Great job.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
David PavlichAdministrator
Transmographied
*****

Reged: 05/18/05

Loc: Mandeville, LA USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: rockethead26]
      #5592294 - 12/28/12 08:52 AM

Very nice work, indeed! And welcome to Cloudy Nights.
David

Edited by David Pavlich (12/28/12 08:53 AM)


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

Reged: 08/27/07

Loc: Deep in the heart of Texas
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: David Pavlich]
      #5592352 - 12/28/12 09:37 AM

Jealous!

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

Reged: 01/29/06

Loc: Illinois, Iowa
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: StarmanDan]
      #5592483 - 12/28/12 11:12 AM

That is a wonderful looking observatory. One of the best DIY builds I have seen, especially to handle a large Dob. What's the inside look like? How have you tried to isolate the telescope platform?

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: StarmanDan]
      #5592529 - 12/28/12 11:40 AM

Thanks for the comments! Now that I am (mostly) finished, winter is here and the moon is full, I would like to reflect, discuss and share my experiences with this Cloudy Nights Forum, an outstanding available resource for the amateur astronomer that has certainly allowed me to further my dreams. Any specific questions? I would be happy to share my thoughts.
A particularly 'tricky' process to help allow the roof to roll so smoothly was the leveling procedure during construction. My wife insisted I buy a laser level but stubborn as I am (and those that know me certainly know why!), I figured I could do just as well (or better) using simple principles as the builders of great structures in the past have done... (Egyptians/pyramids and water troughs) I used a 50' length of flexible clear tubing. I filled the tube with water and used it as a long bubble level. From one wall top plate corner to the other, and at all other points along that plane where the metal works rests for the entire 20x24 roof, I am about 1/4 inch off. I assume that will slowly change because of the nature of wood. From the footing structures to the beams and 6x6 posts to top plates, I measured about 5 separate times with the elevation changes and used the average pencil marks to make the wood cuts.

Measure 5x, cut once. Worked for me!

Edited by DGB (12/28/12 01:40 PM)


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

Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592553 - 12/28/12 11:53 AM

First, allow us to welcome you from a CN "lurker", to a CN poster that has all of us drooling!

What a truly beautiful observatory! I absolutely love the porch; one would never know that it's an observatory. The latticework really adds so much beauty to it, and the bonus; extra storage!

We'd love to take a look inside this beauty, when you have time to post additional pictures!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Starman27]
      #5592635 - 12/28/12 12:50 PM

Hello Herman,
More pics to follow. The 30" sits on an approximately 3'x3' raised platform which was built independent of the 20'x24' structure. There are 4 each 6x6 ground contact pressure treated posts set into the ground about 3 to 4 feet deep with 3 to 4 large 80lb bags of concrete in each hole. Those 4 posts are 'capped' with a wood platform extending about 9" above the observatory floor. The platform total height above the sloping ground is just under 6' at that point. The floor and the platform do NOT touch. I plan on putting soft foam strips into the gaps. In my tests, multiple folks walking on the observatory floor have no appreciable visual effect at the eyepiece. Folks JUMPING on the floor does show a slight jiggling at the eyepiece. I am assuming that the induced vibration are from the observatory foundation footings which are transferring through the ground and into the separate platform supports. To me, for a visual scope, this is quite acceptable. Previously on SOLID ground with this large scope, a tap to the focuser would induce about a 2 second movement at the eyepiece. I still get the same 2 second movement when I tap the eyepiece ON THE PLATFORM.

Think of it this way: 11' to the eyepiece at zenith, 6' down to ground level from platform - Nearly 17' above ground in the middle of the night looking for really faint fuzzies... Pegs my fun-o-meter!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: csa/montana]
      #5592703 - 12/28/12 01:32 PM

Quote:

First, allow us to welcome you from a CN "lurker", to a CN poster that has all of us drooling!

What a truly beautiful observatory! I absolutely love the porch; one would never know that it's an observatory. The latticework really adds so much beauty to it, and the bonus; extra storage!

We'd love to take a look inside this beauty, when you have time to post additional pictures!




Thanks Carol,
Yes! The 'covered' porch turned out to be the gathering and resting point for my Northern Virginia Astronomy Club observing buddies on into the late hours of summer and autumn. I'm very glad I included that feature. With the onset of winter, the 6x20 'warm room' is becoming popular. During nice and sunny days, I often go out and use the observatory deck for reading and planning the next 'Star Party' observing list.
In my first encounter with the County Office, I walked in and showed them a picture of a large Roll-off-Roof Observatory and said "I want to build one of these, how can I legally do this myself on my property?" Technically with the County, this is considered a secondary structure on the property. Prior to the first post hole, I spent about 10 hours total with the County Inspectors Office going over every detail in my plans to ensure I wasn't going against county and state code. Once I identified all the variables and made a plan, and after paying the appropriate fees and permits of course, I dove into this with the energy and excitement of a teenager! As the fulfillment of a life long dream, there was quite a sense of satisfaction in the entire process of completing all of this myself!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592823 - 12/28/12 02:57 PM Attachment (100 downloads)

Here is a pic of the upper wall section with the metal works installed and the roof roller section sitting in place prior to the trusses being mounted.
The county said that I needed a positive locking mechanism in place (for both an open and closed roof), so I came up with this design and had a local metal fabricator make the rail system you see in the picture. The welded end cap with the solid metal post actually slides in between the caster base plate and 'v' groove wheel. The length of the rail is 42' on each side for the 24' roof to roll on. Each end of the 42' lengths has this end cap configuration. 4 total, effectively locking down the observatory roof in the fully open position and the fully closed position. I simply put a clamp on each side to keep the roof from blowing out of either locked position. The strong welded end caps do stop the roof from rolling off in the darkness and also stop the roof from blowing up and off in a big storm. Proof positive was with the BIG derecho storm at the end of June that came out of nowhere with 75+ mph winds! Northern Virginia lost many trees (I lost 4 on my property), but no, no, my observatory roof didn't blow away. Maybe I should patent this idea! Anyone see something similar?


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592827 - 12/28/12 03:00 PM Attachment (65 downloads)

And the other end of the rail system.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Bob Griffiths
Getting Grouchy
*****

Reged: 10/10/05

Loc: Frederick Maryland
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5592834 - 12/28/12 03:11 PM

Hey...LET me congratulate you on one heck of a nice (understatement) looking and functional observatory...

Not much else I can say... except I also am very jealous ... mouth watering jealous !!!

Bob G.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
EdTheEdge
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 04/10/09

Loc: Lomita, CA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Bob Griffiths]
      #5592924 - 12/28/12 04:14 PM

Now THAT'S an OBSERVATORY!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Bob Griffiths]
      #5592934 - 12/28/12 04:19 PM Attachment (94 downloads)

Simply put, the observatory was designed around the 30" Obsession. Here is a southern facing shot from inside the observatory looking out the two inward swinging 6' wide windows. As can be seen on the right window, the outer 2' section of each window is a translucent polycarbonate materiel and lets in PLENTY of daylight sun from the south side of the observatory. I figured the older I get, the higher the risk of falling out the window reaching out to close them, so I designed them to open inward! You can also see the 3x3 raised platform I mentioned earlier. Even with the windows in their inward open position, the 30" will swing down to horizontal and easily clear the NE, East, SE, South, SW, West and NW walls with only about 30 degrees to either side of north end not clearing. But, hey, the apex of the roof is there anyway... The observatory is angled slightly NE from a North/South line by only the amount needed for the 30" to just see Polaris on the roof slope. Gotta think of the Argo Navis and ServoCAT setup procedures and the possibility of future equatorial concerns. I opted to allow that northern floor space to be incorporated into the Warm Room (more on that later). I have a 10' and 6' ladder handy for use with the 30". The floor space needs to be free from clutter, ESPECIALLY at night when shuffling the ladders around the observatory floor. Not shown in the NE corner is a open bookcase style cabinet for shelf space and eyepieces. In the NW corner is my red light district for an open chart cabinet storing loose leaf star charts.

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

Reged: 07/01/09

Loc: Porcupine, Ontario Canada
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5593305 - 12/28/12 08:38 PM

And this magnificant obervatory comes with a 30 inch Obsession!

I am speechless.

jake


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: northernontario]
      #5593595 - 12/28/12 11:56 PM Attachment (69 downloads)

As every one here has done with their observatory, you start from the ground up. This initial kick-off picture is from February 6th, 2012 the first of many a long work day aimed at reaching First Light! 12 footing holes at 2 foot wide and 2 foot deep.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5595085 - 12/29/12 08:20 PM Attachment (48 downloads)

Here is where 3 weeks took me with the initial effort. Certainly were a lot of moving pieces, parts and actions during this phase with purchasing and delivery (to driveway) of all BOM required. I then had to move EVERYTHING down and around the house to the work site. Lots of measuring and re-measuring with the water tube as I mentioned earlier. Hint to Others: PLAN on losing weight with this type of project!! I lost 20 pounds as an added bonus.
The County Inspectors came out early on for the initial footing holes and electrical trench run before I could continue to reach the point in this picture.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5595162 - 12/29/12 09:20 PM Attachment (83 downloads)

As I am gathering together all the household pictures from the Observatory build, I just came across this from my wife's phone camera as I'm not usually one to snap pictures of myself. If you look at the bottom left of this image you can see the clear tubing I used to measure the reference points.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Starhawk
Space Ranger
*****

Reged: 09/16/08

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5595460 - 12/30/12 01:42 AM

Why Morning Calm? Have you spent time in Korea?

-Rich


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
michael hester
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/28/08

Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5595762 - 12/30/12 09:50 AM

That is a nice observatory. It even matches your house. Beautiful.

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Starhawk]
      #5596413 - 12/30/12 03:47 PM Attachment (57 downloads)

Quote:

Why Morning Calm? Have you spent time in Korea?

-Rich




Hi Rich,
Touchè! Very perceptive. In addition to 20% of my life in the Pacific rim countries (including 6+ years in Korea) I find that my most peaceful and contemplative hours of observing also match the translated Korean Language meaning for the country of South Korea. 'Chosun' means Land of the Morning Calm: South Korea.
When looking to name my mobile (now permanent) observatory years ago, I searched the Internet high and low and was quite surprised to find this name not already taken. Here is a shot of my mobile observatory I used for the prior 6 years.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: michael hester]
      #5596438 - 12/30/12 04:02 PM

Quote:

That is a nice observatory. It even matches your house. Beautiful.




Thanks Michael,
Well... As an after thought, my Wife and I had a laugh over this point! If you look at the picture again, you will note that the lines of the house and the lines of the Observatory are 90 degrees off!!! Should I strip it down and start over??? Maybe in the next life!


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

Reged: 03/06/07

Loc: Northumberland, UK
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5596442 - 12/30/12 04:03 PM

Hi Donovan,

That's a beautiful observatory, it looks right at home in your equally beautiful grounds. I really liked the idea of the rods to capture the castors at rail ends too. Congratulations.

Keith


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Keith Howlett]
      #5596494 - 12/30/12 04:27 PM

Quote:

Hi Donovan,

That's a beautiful observatory, it looks right at home in your equally beautiful grounds. I really liked the idea of the rods to capture the castors at rail ends too. Congratulations.

Keith




Thank you Keith,
Speaking of grounds, I thank your fellow countryman Sir Patrick Moore (RIP) for his creative ideas from his book! In the picture showing the house and observatory, look to the immediate left of the observatory and you will see alternating shrubs and evergreens which I hope will grow into a hedgerow of sorts. That will enclose a courtyard area where I will have a permanent fire pit and an additional area to set up other scopes I have available. We had a nice fire going there with chairs facing out during the Geminids. The fire certainly kept us toasty and comfortable that cold night!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5598428 - 12/31/12 05:28 PM Attachment (63 downloads)

For the observatory structure, I chose to use 2"x6"s for the exterior load bearing 8' tall walls. Possibly overkill, but not in my opinion with a one ton roof rolling around over your head! Building codes are a minimum, not a maximum.
For the roof movement function I decided on v-groove castors on angle iron rails. (I did read with interest about only using one "v" groove rail on one side and a flat plate/wheel on the other, but decided on two similar rails.) Working out the specifics called for some research and decisions. Considering code and roof load requirements, I opted for 20 ea 1,000 lb capacity "v" groove castors and for the rails I decided on 2" angle iron welded to 5/16"x4" wide steel plate (with mounting holes drilled every foot alternating on either side of each rail) to spread the roof load over double 2"x6" wall header plates. With the plate added, the roof weight will not 'compress' the header boards with the imprint of the inverted "v" angle iron, causing some alignment issues.
For my 20'x24' observatory, that's 42'x2ea for a total of 84 linear feet (with 4 each of my special welded end plates I designed). Each 42' section came in two equal length pieces (with staggered plate/"v" angle iron butt joints to spread the weld section which was welded on site after I mounted them on the structure). The entire metal rail effort; including materiel, welding, fabrication, priming, hole drilling, delivery and a one time on-site welding was contracted out to a local metal fabricator shop for $500.
All said and done, I can roll the roof off with just my body weight pulling a rope on the underside of the trusses (yes, they are reinforced)! Took my time and did it right, measure 5x, cut once. At some point though, I will probably research and install some form of motorized system.
In this picture, if you look down the rail, you will see an unpainted 2x4 section (placeholder) for one of the top plates of the interior non-load bearing wall. YES, those inspectors were THAT precise in critiquing my plans before I started! This was MY first observatory build and more importantly, THEIR first observatory also! There is an error in this picture that I came across as I continued the installation... Anyone see it?

Edited by DGB (12/31/12 06:02 PM)


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


Reged: 04/26/08

Loc: Rhode Island, USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5599608 - 01/01/13 01:21 PM

Quote:

For the observatory structure, I chose to use 2"x6"s for the exterior load bearing 8' tall walls. Possibly overkill, but not in my opinion with a one ton roof rolling around over your head! Building codes are a minimum, not a maximum.....




The compressive strength of a typical 2 x 4 is about 40,000 pounds. It takes some doing to build a roof that will stress a 2 x 4 wall. <g>
I went the other direction and built my observatory without studs, with just a top plate. That works, too.

dan k.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Mary B
Vendor - Echo Astronomy and Electronics
*****

Reged: 05/21/10

Loc: Minnesota
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: HunterofPhotons]
      #5600092 - 01/01/13 06:26 PM

One rafter bracket is reversed, or it is right and the rest are wrong...

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: HunterofPhotons]
      #5600203 - 01/01/13 07:38 PM

Quote:

Quote:

For the observatory structure, I chose to use 2"x6"s for the exterior load bearing 8' tall walls. Possibly overkill, but not in my opinion with a one ton roof rolling around over your head! Building codes are a minimum, not a maximum.....




The compressive strength of a typical 2 x 4 is about 40,000 pounds. It takes some doing to build a roof that will stress a 2 x 4 wall. <g>
I went the other direction and built my observatory without studs, with just a top plate. That works, too.

dan k.




Interesting fact about vertical weight, but I just like the nice, solid feel of a rigid structure with a floor 2' to 8' in the air that doesn't move laterally in the wind! I also used 4 each 5' long 2"x10" braces diagonally connecting (as a triangle in each corner) the intersecting observatory wall corners on the underside of each top plate for added wall rigidity. Again, overkill? Probably so, but I do plan on passing the scope and observatory on to a few more generations!


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Mary B]
      #5600241 - 01/01/13 07:59 PM

Quote:

One rafter bracket is reversed, or it is right and the rest are wrong...



Hi Mary,
Correct! Fortunately for me, only had to correct the one.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5600427 - 01/01/13 10:08 PM Attachment (57 downloads)

Here is another picture from my wife's phone camera and also the five week water mark for my observatory. I used ground contact pressure treated 6"x6" posts notched precisely for height to attach double 2"x12" boards nailed, glued, butted on posts and bolted together for beams. 2"x10" joists were hung with hangars between the 4"x12" beams. 3/4" T&G plywood was glued and screwed to the joists. In the picture, note the 4 each 6x6 posts towards the center of the floor structure. As mentioned, they are independent of the observatory structure and would later get framed as a platform for the Obsession 30". The metal rails were just recently delivered at this point also. They are to the right of the structure. The floor was within 1/4" of level over the 20'x24' floor and the diagonals were also within 1/4" from 'square'. Oh, and don't forget to invest in a good pair of knee pads, you WON'T regret the investment!
Measured 5x, cut once. Beginning to sound like a broken record but it certainly is a process for me to follow!


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

Reged: 01/09/06

Loc: Seattle Washington
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5603729 - 01/03/13 09:36 PM

Excellent Job.

Nothing more accurate than the water level.


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
droid
rocketman
*****

Reged: 08/29/04

Loc: Conneaut, Ohio
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: RobVG]
      #5620216 - 01/13/13 06:16 AM

beautiful observatory ,well done

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

Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5620514 - 01/13/13 10:55 AM

An amazing job! We really enjoy seeing photos of the builds!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: csa/montana]
      #5625207 - 01/15/13 09:12 PM Attachment (27 downloads)

This picture was from March 24th, a rainy day. As you can see, I painted the floor and 2"x6" wall studs black as I built them. The open roof/deck posts were carefully measured, cut in height, aligned with the load bearing walls and then set in place on their footings with more concrete. My design called for the deck to be one step down from the observatory floor level, giving that much more headroom between the finished deck level and the underside of the upper 6"x6" beam/rail for the rolling roof. The finished deck level was also to be about 1/2 step down to the ground level at the highest point of the sloping ground (closest point to the camera.)

Edited by DGB (01/15/13 09:15 PM)


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5655204 - 01/31/13 10:26 PM Attachment (16 downloads)

Here is three days later. The 6"x6" roof rail support beams were carefully lifted, aligned and attached.
I found that priming and painting the T-111 siding out in the open with a long handled roller saved me time and less aching for my back.


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

Reged: 05/14/05

Loc: montana
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #5655293 - 01/31/13 11:17 PM

Great idea painting everything as you go!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Irene
journeyman


Reged: 03/09/05

Loc: AZ Arizona
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #6449639 - 04/05/14 07:46 PM Attachment (2 downloads)

Hello, I am very interested in building an observatory similar to your's. Do you by any chance happen to have any drawings/plans for the building, the kind you have to submit for a building permit? Thanks so much!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
TCW
professor emeritus


Reged: 11/05/13

Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: RobVG]
      #6449725 - 04/05/14 08:44 PM

Quote:

Excellent Job.

Nothing more accurate than the water level.




Actually if you are working around a corner of a house where part of the water tube is in the sun and the rest in shade it can be off by a considerable amount due to the delta in water density/temperature.


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

Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Irene]
      #6450636 - 04/06/14 11:15 AM

Irene,

Take a look at SkySheds or BackyardObservatories. Both will give you plans that should be adequate enough for you to get a permit off of. Check your building codes, often one isn't required if you keep it below a certain size. I never found free plans when I was building my ROR.

Good luck,
Chris


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Irene
journeyman


Reged: 03/09/05

Loc: AZ Arizona
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: DGB]
      #6451037 - 04/06/14 03:08 PM

I would very much appreciate receiving a copy of the drawings/plans made for this observatory, as I would like to create a similar roll-off roof observatory for my 14.5" Starmaster Dob. I thnk I could use the drawings/building plan as a template to begin creating my own observatory. Thanks so much!

Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
DGB
member
*****

Reged: 05/12/08

Loc: Reva, Virginia USA
Re: Morning Calm Observatory new [Re: Irene]
      #6451246 - 04/06/14 05:19 PM

Hello Irene,
PM me (don.brock@gmail.com) and I can send you scanned files of what was submitted with a Madison County Virginia Permit Application. My on-site hard copy was subsequently "red lined" with tweaks as I progressed and slightly modified my original plans. I always say that a plan is simply a point to deviate from! I will dig through my files and try to find that hard copy to scan for you.
Donovan,


Post Extras: Print Post   Remind Me!   Notify Moderator  
Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | (show all)


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

Moderator:  Christopher Erickson, Mitchell Duke 

Print Thread

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


Thread views: 4180

Jump to

CN Forums Home


Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics