Since we relocated to our retirement home in Maryland two years ago I‘ve been using portable setup from deck for observing. I’ve been studying my options for best location for permanent pier with eventual goal to enclose and create small observatory. The ‘best’ overall viewing location would have placed pier/observatory (planning for remote operation/imaging duties) at SE corner of property where it was more visible to public (spot in our landscaping adjacent to the public boardwalk and stairwell to boardwalk). On reconsideration I went with second choice which is in protected area of backyard within our fence line and sits in raised position above street level view. Location 2 has less chance of experiencing vandalism and observatory is only 10-ft from back door of the house if I need to check something. Town approval was given and neighbors were happy. My DIY experience started with preparations (dig) for pier back in March and have continued with build of 8x8 observatory (exterior work should be finished shortly). I’ll be at least 30-45 more days getting all the ‘comforts’ in-place but expect to be able to use the observatory by end of July.
The pier hole was 18”x24” @ 42” deep (frost line is 30”) with rebar cage. Had poured 24x 60# bags of concrete and used galvanized J-bolts. Purchased 48” Bisque MX 8” pier and later swapped to 42” Bisque ME 10” pier.
Pic below shows site at start of project with delivery of lumber in early April. I had already completed concrete pour in March and attached Bisque pier.