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Equipment Discussions >> Observatories

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934785 - 06/22/13 03:08 PM Attachment (20 downloads)

...and the floor seemed quite happy with it...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934788 - 06/22/13 03:10 PM Attachment (23 downloads)

But then it rained. And, wow, did the water ever collect. How long would this take to dry out? Weeks? Months? So, up came the floor and out came the plastic.

Edited by SFGagnon (06/22/13 05:10 PM)


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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934794 - 06/22/13 03:13 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

Once that was sussed out, time to start the framing. I personally have a very difficult time telling when I have the piece aligned with the blade so that the cut happens where I want it. Read about this method and happily used it. In essence, a sacrificial piece is mounted to the saw's fence and cut through...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934797 - 06/22/13 03:14 PM Attachment (16 downloads)

...the cut is then used to align the work. Easy peasy.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934799 - 06/22/13 03:16 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

Here's another point of departure from ED's plans. I -think- they have their studs set for siding that 'wraps around' the building, as you would have if you were building their metal building. I adjusted the spacing for standard plywood T1-11 siding.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934805 - 06/22/13 03:21 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

Not having done this before, and having a bit of OCD, I was always wondering how square was square enough. I would secure the wall sections to the flooring as they were being built. However, once I released the clamps, there would be a 'thunk' sound as stresses readjusted and my nice, square section would no longer be square. Measuring diagonally, they would be off as much as 3/8". So, it was with some trepidation that I raised the wall sections onto the flooring...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934808 - 06/22/13 03:22 PM Attachment (16 downloads)

It all went together incredibly easily, much to my surprise!

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934809 - 06/22/13 03:25 PM Attachment (13 downloads)

Space between adjoining wall sections was tight, but these right angle brackets made the job of securing the walls to each other a lot easier.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934811 - 06/22/13 03:28 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

The roof/dome support took a fair amount of time. As far as I can tell, it's intended to be built as a single unit and then placed on the building. This wasn't an option for me as (1) I didn't have a space to do it and (2) I'm more or less doing this on my own. Lifting that whole assembly just wasn't going to happen. So, I started by attaching the outer border and then fitting the two main beams in position.

Edited by SFGagnon (06/22/13 05:25 PM)


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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934813 - 06/22/13 03:29 PM Attachment (15 downloads)

The main beams are double thickness, glued and screwed together.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934814 - 06/22/13 03:30 PM Attachment (13 downloads)

Straps and the secondary beams make for a good clamp for allowing the glue to set.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934818 - 06/22/13 03:31 PM Attachment (17 downloads)

At least now I can see where the dome's ring is going to go.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934821 - 06/22/13 03:33 PM Attachment (14 downloads)

Since I can see where it's going to go, I might as well put it there. How does one person lift an 8' diameter ring onto a building?

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934822 - 06/22/13 03:34 PM Attachment (18 downloads)

Straps take the place of having a wingspan of 8'...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934825 - 06/22/13 03:35 PM Attachment (11 downloads)

And it can be stepped into place with sawhorses, ladders and the building itself.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934829 - 06/22/13 03:37 PM Attachment (18 downloads)

Hooray! Although, the problem of getting the dome up there was still looming. And, this was a bit taller than I thought...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934833 - 06/22/13 03:39 PM Attachment (16 downloads)

While it was tall, it wasn't tall enough. The aluminum ring is a couple of inches shorter than the plastic ring that can also be purchased. This is potentially a problem since the bottom of the dome could end up resting on the roof. This would not do well for rotation.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934841 - 06/22/13 03:41 PM Attachment (19 downloads)

I contacted ED and, yes, there are spacers that should have beed delivered with the dome. They weren't, but I had them in my possession, along with mounting hardware, a few days later.

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934852 - 06/22/13 03:47 PM Attachment (16 downloads)

The last piece of framing before the siding was installed. It became a problem later...

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SFGagnon
super member


Reged: 08/02/09

Loc: Carrollton, VA
Re: PBG Observatory - My Exploradome Adventure! new [Re: SFGagnon]
      #5934855 - 06/22/13 03:48 PM Attachment (24 downloads)

Starting the siding...

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