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Pier-Tech TeleStation 5?

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#1 Aquatone

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Posted 08 November 2015 - 01:22 AM

Does anyone have any experience of the 10 x 10 split roof Pier-Tech TeleStation 5? This looks like a fairly compact light observatory structure that could cover the 12.5' x 12.5' slab and pier I already have prepared.

 

I can find very little in the way of reviews on this company or their products, except for a poor customer service thread on CN a few years ago. Things may have changed recently however. and wondered if anyone has recent experience.

 

In particular I am wondering how effective the split roof design is at keeping everything waterproof.

 

I have been seriously considering a 12' AstroHaven clamshell but would like to know more about Pier-Tech as an alternative. Location will be coastal California and not in any kind of extreme weather conditions.

 

Chris

 



#2 Christopher Erickson

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Posted 28 November 2015 - 10:17 PM

I guess that nobody has any experience with this product to share!


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#3 Raginar

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Posted 29 November 2015 - 01:45 PM

I'd probably contact the company and see if they have anyone they could refer you too. 



#4 jerryyyyy

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Posted 06 April 2016 - 03:10 PM

Did you ever get any more info?  I am looking at a smaller version 6x6. 



#5 wjbanjo

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Posted 08 April 2016 - 06:05 PM

I have an older 7x7 telestation which suits me quite well. Communication with the company was  less than satisfactory some years ago when I had a question about the rubber  seals that hold in the panels. I had to use caulk to keep out the rain. My scopes are on the large size for such a small building but I make do and one guest is possible with some dancing about to stay out of the was of a swinging  scope. In the winter however the building tends to ice up in the cold. Sub twenty degrees and near the dewpoint  the entire inside and outside structure can be coated in ice. The bump out  that contains the roof motor drive  isn't  engineered too well. The top of that structure is a tray for  rain and snow.  I open and close the roof manually and that works fine even when there's ice forming on the surfaces.

 

Bill


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#6 jerryyyyy

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 09:01 AM

Thanks for the comment.  I am closer to getting the 6x6 or 6x8 model.  I'll computer control (I hope).   Looks like I would be better with the solid roof rather than the split. 

 

I looked at the Astrohaven but no door and questionable controls are scaring me off. 


Edited by jerryyyyy, 01 May 2016 - 09:03 AM.

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#7 Raginar

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Posted 01 May 2016 - 11:29 AM

Astro haven has bad tech support too. I sent them an email just asking what it would take to move one and thy ignored me. Who wants that kind of resale angst?

#8 Aquatone

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 10:57 PM

Did you ever get any more info?  I am looking at a smaller version 6x6. 

 

OP here with an update. After thinking it through, I decided to take a chance on Pier-Tech and ordered a 10' x 10' Tele-Station 5 in January. Though I liked the 12' Astrohaven clamshell, its aesthetic and slightly larger size did not quite fit into the geometry of my backyard. The split opening roof and space utilization of the TS-5 should work well and I better understand the design which should be fully water tight. Also, an imaging buddy in San Diego who has a smaller (remote) Tele Station was very helpful in sharing his experiences and reassuring about what to expect.

 

So far my experience with Pier-Tech has been very positive. Vito was very helpful in defining the final specification, has periodically sent me pictures of it under construction, and has kept me informed in general. As of today it is ready for shipping only a few weeks after the rough projected delivery date back in January.

 

So everything is ready to install my new TS-5 on the 12' by 12' base in the picture below. I will post an update when the observatory arrives, and the work of installation begins.

 

Chris

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Edited by Aquatone, 04 May 2016 - 11:01 PM.

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#9 jerryyyyy

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 11:05 PM

Thanks.  Little response from AstroHaven and Vito more responsive.  Planning of 6x6 in a week or two as I get pier set in.  Ordered their telescoping pier.  Need to get scope above rim. 

 

Have you figured out the computer interface?  I have ACP. 

 

PS  I see you are in Bay area- greetings....


Edited by jerryyyyy, 04 May 2016 - 11:06 PM.


#10 Aquatone

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 11:51 PM

Thanks.  Little response from AstroHaven and Vito more responsive.  Planning of 6x6 in a week or two as I get pier set in.  Ordered their telescoping pier.  Need to get scope above rim. 

 

Have you figured out the computer interface?  I have ACP. 

 

PS  I see you are in Bay area- greetings....

 

Greetings - I am in the East Bay in Lamorinda. I ordered the control system for remote operations but have not yet decided on the software interface. At the moment just having a roof over my telescope I can open and close at the push of a button will be amazing enough!

 

Chris



#11 jerryyyyy

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Posted 05 May 2016 - 11:00 AM

Looks like1 you are a couple steps ahead of me.  I'll send you a PM. 



#12 Aquatone

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Posted 05 May 2016 - 01:16 PM

Vito is great presales. It's post sales and "where is my item" that's the issue

What's the wait time for the telestation?

 

I ordered my Tele Station 5 right at the end of December with a projected delivery time of 3-4 months. So far we are pretty much on track.

 

Chris



#13 Aquatone

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Posted 16 May 2016 - 11:53 PM

The Tele-Station 5 has just arrived. All the components have been unpackaged. Next step is to assemble it!

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Edited by Aquatone, 16 May 2016 - 11:56 PM.

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#14 jerryyyyy

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Posted 17 May 2016 - 09:38 AM

Vito also got my $ for a 6' Telestation2...  No ETA yet.  Pier works and looks very solid. 

 

Will be very interested in following your assembly.   Looks like a piece of cake ;)

 

PS  Did the walls come assembled, or is that your handiwork? 


Edited by jerryyyyy, 17 May 2016 - 09:40 AM.


#15 Aquatone

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Posted 17 May 2016 - 10:21 AM

Vito also got my $ for a 6' Telestation2...  No ETA yet.  Pier works and looks very solid. 

 

Will be very interested in following your assembly.   Looks like a piece of cake ;)

 

PS  Did the walls come assembled, or is that your handiwork? 

 

 

Yes the 4 walls came preassembled. They are more solid and substantial in real life than they appear in pictures. It took 3/4 of us to get them out of the shipping crate and carry them in one by one. I will post some assembly pictures when that starts!

 

Chris



#16 Aquatone

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 04:16 PM

Update: I now have an assembled Tele Station 5 observatory!

 

By far the hardest part was just getting it off the truck and unpacked. The 10 x 10 walls in particular were very heavy and needed myself, my two sons, and a neighbor just to manage each of the 4 sections from the driveway into my backyard.

 

After that, it was fairly straightforwards for three of us to lift the 4 walls into position on the concrete base. From that point onwards, I built the observatory pretty much single handed. I could have probably done it in an afternoon with help, but it was quite therapeutic taking time to just bolt everything together over a week.

 

I had to call Vito a few times for guidance, and I would like to give him a lot of credit for quickly answering my emails and basic questions regularly, even over the weekends and at night.

 

The observatory is now about 95% finished. Still a few roof bolts to go, and I need to do some caulking. I am also having a raised wooden floor constructed above the concrete base so I can run cables underneath.

 

All in all, I am very pleased with the Tele station 5 so far. The two roof sections open really smoothly and quietly. The whole structure is also very rigid and much more solid than it sometimes looks in the pictures. I think the overall design in general is really well thought out. Here are some pictures of the observatory under construction:

 

Chris

 

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#17 TestnDoc

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 04:25 PM

Very nice. Any idea what kind of winds those walls can sustain? I've thought about the TS5, but live in hurricane country.



#18 Aquatone

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 05:15 PM

Very nice. Any idea what kind of winds those walls can sustain? I've thought about the TS5, but live in hurricane country.

 

I have little doubt the overall TS5 structure will withstand considerable wind forces. The aluminum structure of the observatory itself is strongly braced internally. (It has to be to withstand the torque of both motors when opening the roof.) The wall panels are made of Alumalite (google it) consisting of outer and inner sheets of aluminum with a bonded corrugated interior core separating them. The overall thickness of the panels is around 1/4" thick and they are quite rigid. They are not flimsy single panels as they might look in the pictures. (You can just see this in the attached picture)

 

Chris

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Edited by Aquatone, 31 May 2016 - 05:17 PM.

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#19 torsinadoc

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 07:40 PM

Thank you for posting. There is very little information/reviews on the telestation



#20 Raginar

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Posted 05 June 2016 - 08:03 PM

How did you like it? Anymore information on the software and hardware for automating it?

#21 jerryyyyy

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Posted 06 June 2016 - 05:38 AM

HI guys, my 6x6 Telestation2 is to arrive near the end of June.  I see you used a concrete base.  That is what my contractor/handyman suggested. 

 

How did you attach the Telestation to the concrete?  Drill in bolts?  How is it sealed around the edges?  Did you run the station right up to the lip of the concrete or did you leave a border?

 

Good luck,

 

JY

 

PS  Looks like you can mount equipment on the walls in the interior.  Have been thinking of how to mount my toys... will be in a smaller space. 



#22 Raginar

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Posted 06 June 2016 - 06:43 AM

You'll epoxy bolts into the concrete and screw them to the shed.

#23 Aquatone

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Posted 06 June 2016 - 10:19 PM

HI guys, my 6x6 Telestation2 is to arrive near the end of June.  I see you used a concrete base.  That is what my contractor/handyman suggested. 

 

How did you attach the Telestation to the concrete?  Drill in bolts?  How is it sealed around the edges?  Did you run the station right up to the lip of the concrete or did you leave a border?

 

Good luck,

 

JY

 

PS  Looks like you can mount equipment on the walls in the interior.  Have been thinking of how to mount my toys... will be in a smaller space. 

 

 

Yes, the Telestation is bolted to the concrete base with bolts as can be seen in the pictures below. I also decided to raise the floor to leave space for cables to run underneath and to provide a dry (carpet tiled) floor in case of any future horizontal water penetration under the wall edges. (Here you just see the pressure treated beams. The floor is not laid yet) I have also caulked all around the edges of the Pier-Tech walls as recommended by Pier-Tech so everything should be pretty dry when it rains.

 

I also water tested the observatory the other night by blasting water at it from ridiculous angles, Besides a few spots to add caulk that are probably unrealistic scenarios, the structure is pretty water tight. My biggest concern that the split roof would be subject to water penetration was unfounded. The big rubber seal and large overlapping aluminum lip was completely water tight, even when I blasted water at it horizontally.

 

My concrete base at 12' x 12' is somewhat larger than the 10' x 10' TS5 as I poured it before deciding on the final observatory vendor. However it makes sense to allow a border, as you may need to adjust the squareness of the TS2 walls so that the opening roof runs true. When I first assembled my TS5 I squared it to the concrete base which being poured into a mould was not super accurate. I could tell from the roof seal on the front wall, I was about an inch out of squareness from one side to the other. This was easily fixed by tapping one wall with a heavy sledge hammer to push it into final orthogonality before bolting the structure to the concrete base. It helps to have a bit of extra margin in your base for these fine adjustments.

 

The TS aluminum structure itself is made from 80/20 Inc components. If you go to their website, there is an almost infinite variety of ways to add equipment to the interior!

 

Chris

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#24 Raginar

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 06:27 AM

Thanks for the pictures. I recently bought a used one so I'm excited to hear how it works out for you.

Edited by Raginar, 07 June 2016 - 07:48 AM.


#25 jerryyyyy

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Posted 07 June 2016 - 09:38 AM

Really very helpful Chris.  This will allow me to speed ahead with the pad and I'll just allow an extra 2" on each side.  I am wondering if you squared the pad to true north... my house runs 10 DEG off true. 




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