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My New Observatory.....I'm Under Construction!

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#1 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 06:47 PM

I've found a dome. I came across a very slightly used dome for a good price now I just have to get it home. Its just short of 9 ft diameter. So work has begun. All the footers are in and I'm pouring the 16 in. pier tomorrow and setting the four corners for the platform. :jump:

My pier adapter plate arrived today...whew thats cutting it close. This may sound stupid but I got 3 emails from APT concerning the location of north on the plate. Each one was to correct the other. One had the tilt plate of the wedge pointing south, the last correction they have north now pointing the same direction as the tilt plate and they've got me confused. I need a little wisdom here, my brain is tired & I'm setting this thing tomorrow so.....

Question....the tilt plate of the wedge should be facing north and the flat accessories area pointing south, correct :question:

Steve

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#2 NeoDinian

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:09 PM

Um... If that plate is for a Meade wedge, then north would be the OTHER direction (Towards the SINGLE screw-hole, not between the other 2)...

#3 NeoDinian

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:12 PM

Heres a pic of my wedge.. You can see the bolt pattern here.

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  • 1233456-wedge1.jpg


#4 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:12 PM

Jeff,
no its for a celestron mounted on a APT wedge

Steve

#5 MichaelW

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:16 PM

Congratulations on breaking ground. However you do realize that this thread is worthless without pictures. ;) :photo:

#6 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:22 PM

See thats whats confusing, usually the single bolt is aligned north but APT has north as per the pic between the two bolts, which would also point the tilt plate north.
Would that be right :question:

Steve

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#7 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:25 PM

I took some today, didn't get a chance to upload yet
trying to get this wedge pointed in the right direction.

Steve

#8 NeoDinian

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:31 PM

The holes are aranged the same on the APT wedge as the Meade wedge (the hole pattern may be different, but they align the same way)... So even using the APT, you want the SINGLE hole pointing north.

Every part of the APT wedge will be on the north side of the wedge except the knob that adjusts the tilt plate. That goes south.

So as I said above, the orientation of the Pier Plate is opposite of what your N shows... :)

#9 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 07:39 PM

Thanks Jeff,

I always thought the single bolt faced north, I was getting worried reading their emails, so techically speaking the tilt plate will be to the south....

Steve

#10 Spoonsize

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 08:56 PM

Regardless of where the holes are, you want the flat face of the wedge that the scope mounts to to face North.

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#11 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 09:13 PM

Steve,
Thanks for the info. They had my head spinnin'.
I don't know why they were getting everything confused. They did'nt mark the plate befor shipping it, so in the emails they wrote in the position, but something wasn't adding up to me, but hey alot of this is new to me. I knew you guys would have the answer. Now I can sleep tonight :D

Steve

#12 NeoDinian

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 10:25 PM

Just remember to set your pier plate with it reversed how you have it shown.. (Your North on that image should actually be South) You'll be fine. :)

#13 StarManSteve

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Posted 03 November 2006 - 10:32 PM

Thanks again.
I was getting myself all worked up. I can't have that the night before the big pour.... :grin:

Steve

#14 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 10:58 AM

Hi all,

Well this past week has been busy. I got started on the OB platform (12x12). I got the deck footers dug and poured. They are 16in. x 3ft. deep & poured to a height of 24in. with 5000 psi concrete. I also started digging the pier footer.

Steve

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  • 1239636-Clipboarddig.jpg


#15 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:03 AM

The pier footer is a BF-36 BIGFOOT SYSTEMS form. The footer hole is 3 1/2ft. diameter x 3 1/2 ft. deep. The pier itself will be 16inches in diameter.


Steve

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  • 1239649-Clipboardbigfoot.jpg


#16 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:07 AM

We also decided to start framing out the platform due to its raised height so it would be easier to pour. Pardon the mess, but we were getting so much done we didn't clean up before the pics.


Steve

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  • 1239658-Clipboardframe1.jpg


#17 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:10 AM

Here's another.
In the foreground is the electrical & phone conduits. I put a subpanel with 20amp service and a GFI breaker running from the garage which is about a 75 feet away.


Steve

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#18 csa/montana

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:13 AM

Steve: A well-deserved Congratulations! It has been worth it! Thanks for sharing your step-by-step photos, as they are very interesting!

Carol

#19 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:20 AM

The platform is setting on 6x6 posts and the joists are all 2x10. The deck boards will be 2x6. The rebar is in and now I am setting & leveling the 16in tube form. My good friend George looks on. He thinks I'm crazy building this.. :crazy:

Steve

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  • 1239689-Clipboardframe.jpg


#20 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:23 AM

Thanks Carol.
What a work out though. Good thing I'm still young. :grin:

#21 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:31 AM

We poured the BIGFOOT first and then the pier. Boy am I glad I splurged and bought a cement mixer.The best $200.00 I ever spent. Did I mention it was 34 degrees & we were in the shade till late morning with a breeze. Brrrrrrrrrrrr!!

The pier tube & BIGFOOT combined took 50 60lb. bags of 5000 psi concrete. I sorta wished I had poured some around the BIGFOOT. It says to backfill with dirt only, but I like overkill.

Steve

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  • 1239714-Clipboardpietubeo=pour.jpg


#22 rwiederrich

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:35 AM

The platform is setting on 6x6 posts and the joists are all 2x10. The deck boards will be 2x6. The rebar is in and now I am setting & leveling the 16in tube form. My good friend George looks on. He thinks I'm crazy building this.. :crazy:

Steve


:jump:Steve, it looks great, and the location appears to be awesome.

I have to agree with your neighbor.... :smirk: It does look like a *SHACK*..leanin an all...... :roflmao:
An look at that leaky roof....... :roflmao:

I am so happy for you...getting the OB started.

Rob :bow:

#23 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:36 AM

Here's another shot from the front. The platform is 3ft off the ground.


Steve

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#24 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:41 AM

Thanks Rob,
Yeah, dunno what to do with that darn roof, no wonder we were cold. :lol: The location is nice for sure. The garage is 75 ft away & my data lines in a separate conduit & trench will eventually come from the side closest to the deck. Its to my northeast, I can't see anything from there so the only thing its blocking is the wind. I am also going to make a remote operations room in there.....one day :D
Steve

#25 StarManSteve

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 11:47 AM

Pier tube filled and leveled.
I ran the electric up thru the tube to keep it nice & neat. A 20amp duplex receptacle box will mount to the front of the pier. Don't let those trees in the background fool ya.
WARNING: OBJECTS IN PICTURE ARE FARTHER THAN THEY APPEAR

Steve

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  • 1239738-Clipboardpiertube.jpg



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