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#1 mark david

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 10:08 AM

I'm a pretty good woodworker...... but by the time i figured out the price for decent multi-ply (Baltic Birch etc...) plywood, poly, time etc. the cost of materials wouldn't be much lower than the cost of a ready made metal observing chair such as that from Orion or Highpoint Scientific.

Could anyone recommend a ready made chair they've been happy with.  

Vesti makes a few at a lower price..

I have a 10" F/5 reflector.  May be getting a 12" before too long.

 

Thanks for your time.

Mark



#2 Oyaji

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 10:18 AM

Nadira!  https://www.geoptik....&product_id=928

 

And you could probably make your own copy of this minimalist design.  


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#3 BoldAxis1967

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 10:22 AM

Starbound.

 

I have been using the Starbound chair for 8-9 years.  Easy to use, comfortable and has a good range of positions. I have found it very stable.  I use it with all of my scopes including a 10 inch F/5 Zhumell.

Check around for best pricing.  I think they are going between $180-200. If you decide on one I suggest you get the white version, easier to see at night.

 

L.


Edited by BoldAxis1967, 03 May 2021 - 10:27 AM.

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#4 Dynan

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 10:25 AM

This one for $180 surprised me with its stability and balance, even at high range.

 

https://www.amazon.c...e?ie=UTF8&psc=1


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#5 jcj380

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:17 AM

I bought a Vestil from Amazon.  I won't observe without it.  At the time it was just a bit over $100.  It's the model without the cross bars in back.


Edited by jcj380, 03 May 2021 - 11:18 AM.

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#6 AshburnDave

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:19 AM

I have two starbound chairs.  Just don't grab the front of the padded seat to move it forward while you're sitting otherwise it could be a fast ride to the bottom.  That has never happened to me but that seems to be its only complaint.

 

https://www.amazon.c...e?ie=UTF8&psc=1


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#7 Speedy1985

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:29 AM

To each his own, but I don’t see any reason why a DIY chair would have to built from birch. For about 20-25% of the cost, you can build one from pine or possibly even oak. 


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#8 Spikey131

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:33 AM

I bought a Vestil from Amazon.  I won't observe without it.  At the time it was just a bit over $100.  It's the model without the cross bars in back.

I have a Vestil Chair CPRO-800LP.  ( https://www.amazon.c...,aps,152&sr=8-1 )

 

I like it.  It is light weight and works well. But after 3 years, I have pretty much worn out the mechanism.  I have bent the metal and bent it back multiple times to keep the seat sliding properly.

 

So I recently bought the Starbound chair.  The mechanism appears much more durable.  I will report back in 3 more years......smile.gif


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#9 jeremiah2229

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:45 AM

I recently finally grabbed a Starbound chair. I was expecting cheap metal that I figured wouldn't hold up for one season but was surprised to receive a chair with real metal and is quite sturdy. Now thinking why didn't I do this years ago.

 

 

Peace...


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#10 gwlee

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 11:51 AM

For a small dob, I find that one of the inexpensive air-adjustable stools sold many places, including discount tool stores, has more than enough adjustment range, and it’s very quick an easy to adjust, so that’s what I use. Mine was a present, so I don’t know for sure where it was purchased.

 

It doesn’t have enough adjustment range to work well with most refractors though. For a refractor use too, you might need one of the much more expensive “astronomy chairs.” However, my 72mm f6 refractor is on a tripod with an adjustable center column, so my air-adjustable stool works well with it. 

 

Think this example might be it: 
 

https://www.amazon.c...l/dp/B0019QITHK


Edited by gwlee, 03 May 2021 - 02:15 PM.


#11 HansD

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 12:02 PM

This is one I have made by Berlebach. I believe it's ash. 

 

https://www.adorama....rce=adl-gbase-p

 

Very strong and light.

 

Hans

 

P.S. There are cams on the back of the seat and a geared strip on the back of the columns to make it adjustable.


Edited by HansD, 03 May 2021 - 12:04 PM.


#12 cuzimthedad

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 12:05 PM

I've owned two Vestil CPRO-600 chairs and love em. Not hard to adjust in the dark either once you're used to it. I also use it for modeling and working at the workbench. Great chair!


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#13 TOMDEY

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 12:23 PM

While on the subject --- anyone know of a commercial observing chair/recliner intended for use with binoculars... straight through binoculars? Especially something that would have provision for supporting the binos or at lease off-loading the weight.    Tom



#14 Mike G.

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 01:41 PM

I have the Vestil 600 linked above.  been using it for several years, maybe 5.  I weigh 195 lbs. and it's never given me a bit of trouble.  easy to use in total darkness, folds up small, adjustments are easy to make.  I would buy another one in a minute if this one disappeared.



#15 gwlee

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 02:03 PM

While on the subject --- anyone know of a commercial observing chair/recliner intended for use with binoculars... straight through binoculars? Especially something that would have provision for supporting the binos or at lease off-loading the weight.    Tom

I use the La Fuma reclining chair for that purpose. It doesn’t have a provision for supporting the weight of the bino, except for putting your elbows on the chair’s arms, but don’t think it would be difficult to rig it with an adjustable binocular support. 


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#16 Tom Stock

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 09:11 PM

I'm a pretty good woodworker...... but by the time i figured out the price for decent multi-ply (Baltic Birch etc...) plywood, poly, time etc. the cost of materials wouldn't be much lower than the cost of a ready made metal observing chair such as that from Orion or Highpoint Scientific.

Could anyone recommend a ready made chair they've been happy with.  

Vesti makes a few at a lower price..

I have a 10" F/5 reflector.  May be getting a 12" before too long.

 

Thanks for your time.

Mark

I have a home made folding chair.. made from just 2x4's and a plywood seat. Total cost about $10.  The one which slides up and down and uses the weight of your body to lock it in place.   It was dead simple to build.

 

It works ok, but sometimes you'll try to move the seat closer and it will slide to the bottom.  

 

I would recommend getting one or building one with solid locking notches, not based on friction alone.  Simply using a router to cut some slots in the back of the 2x4 where the threaded rod locks against the 2x4 would do the trick, and the last one I built had this and worked better. Unfortunately I left it out in the rain and it delaminated.

 

https://www.pinteres...40233146319574/


Edited by Tom Stock, 03 May 2021 - 09:17 PM.

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#17 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 09:22 PM

I have two Starbound Chairs. One is 20 years old, one about 12.

I weight between 210 lbs and 240 lbs.  They've had a few issues, mostly because I sometime lean over and put my weight on one side but they're hanging in there. The older one has probably 2000+ nights on it, the newer one around a 1000. 

They are the only thing I use every night and many days, great for cleaning out the cat box.

Jon


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#18 TOMDEY

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 09:59 PM

I use the La Fuma reclining chair for that purpose. It doesn’t have a provision for supporting the weight of the bino, except for putting your elbows on the chair’s arms, but don’t think it would be difficult to rig it with an adjustable binocular support. 

Thanks! It looks nice. I might order one tonight!    Tom



#19 paul hart

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Posted 03 May 2021 - 10:13 PM

This one for $180 surprised me with its stability and balance, even at high range.

 

https://www.amazon.c...e?ie=UTF8&psc=1

That's what I use, but I got sticker shock when I saw the price. Years ago, I paid around $100 for mine. Originally I used the Denver Observers Chair that you could make today under $50. My only problen with that chair was I didn't have enough room in my car.



#20 greenstars3

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 03:48 AM

Mark

 

Take a look at a Catsperch chair, and a Denver chair, come up with your on take on them and have fun in the shop

I built mine out of oak and it is not ever going to buck me off at any height 

I used a 18 to 20 degree angle (don't remember which one now) 

I even put a sliding eyepiece holder under the seat to hold the toys and can slide it out of the way if needed

 

Robert


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#21 Sky_LO

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 11:41 AM

I have the intelliscope XT 10i at f 4.8 

 

This stool has plenty of up/down adjustment for the dob - totally love it.    

What I like best is the comfy molded seat, low low price, and super light to 

lift with a couple of fingers and moves super easy around the scope. 

 

And for the mockers....just Ignore the wheels....they don't work on gravel or dirt or grass anyway.

If you are on concrete or asphalt, occasionally being able to wheel around the scope is actually fun too.     

 

-Lauren   

Attached Thumbnails

  • stool.jpg

Edited by Sky_LO, 04 May 2021 - 11:41 AM.

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#22 cuzimthedad

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 12:46 PM

I have the intelliscope XT 10i at f 4.8 

 

This stool has plenty of up/down adjustment for the dob - totally love it.    

What I like best is the comfy molded seat, low low price, and super light to 

lift with a couple of fingers and moves super easy around the scope. 

 

And for the mockers....just Ignore the wheels....they don't work on gravel or dirt or grass anyway.

If you are on concrete or asphalt, occasionally being able to wheel around the scope is actually fun too.     

 

-Lauren   

Reminds me of the old formed metal farm tractor seats from long ago.



#23 gwlee

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 01:05 PM

Thanks! It looks nice. I might order one tonight!    Tom

Tom,

 

I have had two of them, small and large, for about 12 years. The smaller version is just big enough for me, and I am about 5’9-10.” 

 

My only complaint is that heat/sunlight soon damages the elastic shock cord lacing, so I eventually replaced it with nylon para cord. 
 

Gary


Edited by gwlee, 04 May 2021 - 01:06 PM.

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#24 gwlee

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 02:23 PM

After almost 4 decades of observing, I still haven’t found an observing chair solution that’s entirely satisfactory to me, but I haven’t gotten around to trying the Star Bound chair that so many seem to like. 

 

I had an observing chair made by Walt Garron from oak. It’s similar to the Denver Chair. It had enough adjustment range to work well with all my small scopes including a 4” refractor and it looked nice, but it was heavy, bulky, and it difficult to shift it’s position when I repointed the scope at a new object, so don’t think it’s well suited for a grab-and-go refractor where the weight of the chair must be included in the total load. I also thought it was too much chair for a small dob. 

 

For a small dob (6-10”),  I also want something small, light and easy to move around, but it doesn’t need much adjustment range. A fixed height, folding, canvas stool with a removable boat cushion to adjust its height is light (~#2) and is adequate for me, and I have used it more than any other. 

 

A friend gave me a pneumatic stool mentioned in post #10 and similar to the one shown in post #21. It’s much heavier, but is easier to adjust its height, and the wheels are a nice addition on smooth surfaces, so I am using it with my dob now on my smooth deck. It doesn’t have enough adjustment range to be completely satisfactory with my refractors though. 

 

For refractors, I am experimenting with a fairly sturdy aluminum photo tripod (Manfrotto 475B) with a crank-adjustable center column (6” adjustment range) combined with the pneumatic stool (6” adjustment range). Used with a 72mm f6 refractor, the combination is very convenient and easy to use on smooth surfaces. The stool provides enough adjustment that the tripod only needs to be raised or lowered a couple of inches from horizon to zenith, so I haven’t noticed any stability problems yet. Doubt the combination would be stabile enough combination for a my 92m f6.7 refractor though, but perhaps one of the heavy-duty tripods with an adjustable center column intended for supporting larger binocular telescopes might work. 

 

The folding stool shown below weighs about 2# and has numerous pockets in the under seat bag to hold eyepieces, red flashlight, charts, and other accessories, so it’s my most grab-and-go seating option for small dobs or small refractors. With the addition of a boat cushion it has just enough height adjustment for me to use with a small dob. 

 

The pneumatic stool is heavier, has more than enough height adjustment for me to use with a small dob, and it’s very easy and convenient to use on a smooth surface such as a deck. It’s also works well with a small refractor mounted on a tripod with a crank adjustable center column. 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • 7D1FD994-99CE-495B-A6B0-30D10C6488FE.jpeg

Edited by gwlee, 04 May 2021 - 03:24 PM.


#25 Spile

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 03:29 PM

I have a diy Denver but it is a heavy thing to move around.

https://astro.catshi...m/denver-chair/


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