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Preparing for a Skyshed Pod

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#1 jrkirkham

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 11:11 AM

I finally broke ground on a 12'x12' deck to house my Skyshed Pod. The Pod is ordered. I hope to assemble it when the weather warms.

The location is about a 3-4 on the Bortle scale. The State owns undeveloped land on the south and west. It is set aside as a hunting area. A close friend owns land on the north and east. It is about a 5 minute (3.5 mile) drive from my home. The observatory will be stage one. If money holds out stage two will be a warm room. If money still holds out stage three will be an upgrade to my telescopes.

Why? Because I am nearing retirement and am getting tired of setting up and tearing down equipment and sleeping in the back of my car.

Here are some shots of the four horizons.

Attached Thumbnails

  • thumbnil North View.jpg
  • thumbnail South View.jpg
  • thumbnail East View.jpg

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#2 jrkirkham

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 11:14 AM

Here's the west view.

 

thumbnail West View.jpg



#3 TOMDEY

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 11:25 AM

Nice! Is it actually on your friend's land? Do you have electricity there?  Tom



#4 jerobe

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 11:53 AM

Excellent horizon in all directions. That is a nice location!



#5 jrkirkham

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 12:05 PM

Yes, it is on my friend's land. We've been friends since childhood. I asked him if I could rent a small plot and he gave me the choice of anyplace I wanted. I chose the site of an old farmhouse foundation where he couldn't farm anyway. I can run electricity to it if I want to, but I haven't decided about that yet. I thought about going off the grid with solar power or a generator. To start with I'll just run off batteries. I'm not sure running the power is worth the expense. I think I like the dark. That is my friend's house to the northeast. It is across a pasture and on the other side of a pond. He also likes the night sky and doesn't run a pole light at night. 


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#6 John Rogers

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 01:16 PM

You are going to enjoy your Pod.  I have had mine for 10 years and it is just as rugged today as the day I received it.

 

I note that you don't have a pier in your photos.  Are you planning on having the telescope free standing in the dome?  I have a pier with mine and it does a great job of eliminating any vibration from movement in or around the deck.



#7 JMKarian

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 01:58 PM

Spectacular opportunities in all directions!   Do not forget the Zenith though.  Consider the POD zenith table, as well as a cover.

 

Clear skies!

 

John


Edited by JMKarian, 14 December 2019 - 01:59 PM.


#8 jrkirkham

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Posted 14 December 2019 - 07:00 PM

I considered a pier but didn't go that way for five reasons:
     1) Budget, to get everything on my priority list I will be right at my limit.

     2) Future plans, a new beefier mount is on my priority list. It will be one of the last things and I didn't know how to build a pier for a mount I don't have yet.

     3) Remote operation, A warm room is phase II of my plan. I hope to run the telescope mostly remotely, so I reinforced the deck under the tripod. It doesn't have much wobble if I am not on it.

     4) Portability, My friend and I are both in our 60s now. If anything should happen to either of us I wanted the option of being able to move everything and relocate.

     5) Fear, I have to confess I thought I would mess t up if I tried. I'm not very handy.

The zenith table is in the back of my mind for a future add on. I didn't start with it mostly because of the budget. It was something that could be added later.



#9 aa6ww

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Posted 18 December 2019 - 04:16 AM

Id just get a few 12v gel deep cycle 100 amp/hr batteries and enough solar panels to keep them charged. 

 

...Ralph


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