Hi all! As it seems to be tradition, I'm going to post updates of my observatory build for all to see. Hopefully the learnings from it will go both ways.
I live on a heavily wooded 5 acres of land, most of which has slopes > 20 degrees so I don't really have any options on my own land. I do, however, live right next to 119 acres of land that used to be the Old Nashville Zoo. I have permission from the owners to build my observatory in the field that used to house the giraffes and elephants --
I have purchased a Nexdome, extra bay, permanent pier, shutter kit, and the dome rotation kit. I made that purchase in January and they arrived just over a week ago.
For my basic layout, I'm going to be doing a 12' x 16' concrete pad, with an isolated pier offset to the west side, leaving room for chairs and the occasional use of my Z12 dobsonian for visual on the east side of the pad. I'll be using a 2' diameter drain pipe that I had on hand as the form for isolated pier foundation. This view faces due south (and southwest for the second picture).
This past weekend, we dug trenches for the outline of the pad and laid conduit from the pier base to the south side and eventually it'll extend power to my home. We're also planning for optional solar charging if we decide against running permanent power to the house. We also added a couple of inches of gravel as a start of a base for the pad itself.
I also prepped the template of my pier bolt pattern with 10" anchor bolts.
We added the concrete and set the template into the base.
Edited by Omeganon, 26 July 2021 - 11:48 AM.