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Adjustable Tripod for Pipe Mount

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#1 pressroll

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Posted 28 August 2020 - 02:13 PM

I'm looking to make a pipe mount for my cheap Meade newt and I'm hung up on what I should do for the tripod.  Living in central PA means that flat areas are few and far between so I need to make sure the legs are adjustable.  I also want to keep the costs down so I was planning to make it out of regular 2x4's for now until I have a good design down and then possible replicate it with a hardwood.  My hangup is that most of the plans for easy DIY tripods do not have adjustable legs and I'm not really sure what a simple solution would be.  Any ideas would be appreciated!



#2 Steve Haverl

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Posted 28 August 2020 - 02:47 PM

Even though central PA (I’m from harrisburg) is obviously hilly, I think you’re posing a problem that doesn’t exist.

Your telescope will set up on a very small footprint, say 6’ in diameter, so you only need a relatively flat area that size. Shouldn’t be a problem and greatly simplifies your tripod leg fabrication. You could have your fixed length 2x4 legs fabricated in a few hours and hope for a clear night !


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#3 Xeroid

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Posted 28 August 2020 - 08:47 PM

Here's what I did when I built my ASH tripod:

 

-  I use 1" x 2" ASH boards but your could use 2 x 4"

- On two legs, I added a sliding length of 1 x 2 behind the leg with a slot. I used a router to cut the slot in the rear piece..

- In front of the leg, I drilled hole for two 1/4 x 20 bolts and knobs through the slots

 

So I can extend the rear piece of a leg, level the top and tighten the knobs in front.

 

The thing to watch out is if the tripod is not leveled and you mount a heavy scope, it may swing toward you and knock your head off.

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My thanks to the many CN craftsmen who have posted this type of design

 

Edit

This tripod weights 11 lbs and with the eyepiece leg spreader is "rock solid", handles my 25 lbs scope + counterweights + mount + diagonal + heavy eyepieces.

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Edited by Xeroid, 28 August 2020 - 08:57 PM.

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#4 Bob4BVM

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Posted 28 August 2020 - 10:28 PM

I'm looking to make a pipe mount for my cheap Meade newt and I'm hung up on what I should do for the tripod.  Living in central PA means that flat areas are few and far between so I need to make sure the legs are adjustable.  I also want to keep the costs down so I was planning to make it out of regular 2x4's for now until I have a good design down and then possible replicate it with a hardwood.  My hangup is that most of the plans for easy DIY tripods do not have adjustable legs and I'm not really sure what a simple solution would be.  Any ideas would be appreciated!

Have you considered a crutch tripod ? Very easy to build, very solid, and adjustable legs are included with your raw materials (which you pick up at a thrift store for around $5 a pair)

 

I use this one with my 6" frac which all told weighs around 50#.

 

Tripod itself is under 10#

 

WELCOME to CN !

Bob.

 

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#5 bcgroove

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Posted 29 August 2020 - 12:43 AM

Does it have to be a tripod? You could do a pipe pier and attach legs and leg levelers like these.

Hockey puck bolted to long carriage bolt, fed through a t-nut in the leg with a handle jam nutted at the top.

 

Bob

 

 

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#6 pressroll

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Posted 29 August 2020 - 06:58 AM

Thanks for all of the ideas!  I'll post pics of how I make out.



#7 mmeichle

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Posted 29 August 2020 - 04:16 PM

This is the quintessential pipe fitting mount design as described in the greatest astronomy and ATM guide ever written:  All About Telescopes by Sam Brown, published by Edmond Scientific, 1967 ed.  It has a "pedestal base".  I built one of these when I as a kid in 1968 and used it for about 25 years.  Notice the easy conversion from altazimuth to equatorial by changing only one pipe fitting, as long as your latitude is 45 degrees!  Also note the coffee can full of cement as a counterweight  I still use a pipe fitting mount one when I want a altazimuth star hopper.  The past should not be forgotten.

 

 

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#8 dallen24

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Posted 31 August 2020 - 05:18 PM

Our club has a couple wooden tripods like that.  Now I know where that design originated.

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Edited by dallen24, 31 August 2020 - 05:19 PM.


#9 pressroll

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 08:43 AM

Finally got a chance to piece something together last night.  I used scrap wood I had around to make a fixed-leg tripod to see what I like and what I don't.  I still need to counterweight it but it was usable with no major issues.  Thanks for all of the input!
 
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Edited by pressroll, 16 September 2020 - 08:43 AM.

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#10 Bob4BVM

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Posted 16 September 2020 - 01:48 PM

This is the quintessential pipe fitting mount design as described in the greatest astronomy and ATM guide ever written:  All About Telescopes by Sam Brown, published by Edmond Scientific, 1967 ed.  It has a "pedestal base".  I built one of these when I as a kid in 1968 and used it for about 25 years.  Notice the easy conversion from altazimuth to equatorial by changing only one pipe fitting, as long as your latitude is 45 degrees!  Also note the coffee can full of cement as a counterweight  I still use a pipe fitting mount one when I want a altazimuth star hopper.  The past should not be forgotten.

Thanks for the reminder , so much we need to remember.

With the current technology bloat our hobby would do well with a dose of more utterly simple, 100% effective solutions like this one.

BTW i live 15 miles south of the 45th parallel :)

CS

Bob



#11 clearwaterdave

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 06:50 AM

That looks like a fine set up.,just keep a few shingles or 1x's around for slipping under the legs for leveling.,

I have built a crutch pod and it works all good with pipe mounts.,

  I also designed a mount that lets the scope move up and down.,thus no need for an adjustable chair.,and the ota is held off to the side.,so I can sit under it as apposed to behind it.,allowing me to sit back rather than lean forward to view.,much more comfy.,

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#12 Bob4BVM

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Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:24 PM

That looks like a fine set up.,just keep a few shingles or 1x's around for slipping under the legs for leveling.,

I have built a crutch pod and it works all good with pipe mounts.,

  I also designed a mount that lets the scope move up and down.,thus no need for an adjustable chair.,and the ota is held off to the side.,so I can sit under it as apposed to behind it.,allowing me to sit back rather than lean forward to view.,much more comfy.,

Dave,

I like your approach to observing comfort, something way to often overlooked it seems.

So how does your "up and down" mount work, can you show some detail on that ?

Thx

Bob




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