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My new Steel Pier....Finally

  • CarlightExpress
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My new Steel Pier....Finally was created by CarlightExpress

Hi All

Been a little busy during the not so dark times of the year building my Pier.

I designed my own pier but then got quoted ridiculous amounts of money to have it made, so fortunately Altair-Astro in the UK have one very similar to my design, so I opted for that.

I dug a hole of 3ft deep, 14" Wide, once this was done, I pushed 2m lengths of 10mm reinforced bar down into the hole to the ground below the hole, enough so that the bars are free standing in the hole......then came the concrete.

I left the concrete to cure for 30 days before putting the pier on, but it's finally done, right in time to start imaging again. Only this time I'll be using my Atik 383L+ with my SX Filterwheel.

Here's some pictures of the pier and since I've now finished the deck around the pier. I did some guide tests whilst kicking the pier, and the guide graph didn't even spike, so I am extremely happy with how things have turned out.


Pier.jpg

I'm in the process of building my power system so that I don't have to keep bringing the battery gear out though :)

Simon
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Last edit: 8 years 9 months ago by CarlightExpress.
8 years 9 months ago #98315

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Replied by CarlightExpress on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Not sure why images won't attach to the post, I've brought them down to a lower file size too

Here they are anyway

Pier: www.flickr.com/photos/30345959@N08/9416598083/

Pier + Mount + Scope : www.flickr.com/photos/30345959@N08/9416597479/

With the Deck : www.flickr.com/photos/30345959@N08/9419365376/
8 years 9 months ago #98316

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Replied by martinus on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Nice!

I watched a few videos about the optimal design and installation of a pier. There are some *strong* opinions - as with many things in amateur astronomy. This one (in two parts) sticks out as someone who sounds very competent but has an awful lot of [citation needed]:





He claims that he doesn't want to help the competition by giving out too much information but that to me sounds like a cop-out. One can't make the kinds of claims that he does, expect 475 quid for a pier (EQ6 version), and not show the data from comparative tests.

Anyway, I thought it was interesting and hopefully not too far off topic.
Last edit: 8 years 9 months ago by martinus.
8 years 9 months ago #98317

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Replied by stang on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

That looks fantastic - very solid.

Are you planning on bringing the mount and scope inside after each imaging session?

I came across these covers a few months ago and found them to be absolutely excellent, saves me so much time on set up. It's been well tested here the last few weeks with 30deg heat one day and thunder storms the next and everything underneath is perfect.

www.telegizmos.com/365%20sizes%20and%20prices%20page%202.htm
Gareth
8 years 9 months ago #98318

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Replied by CarlightExpress on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

The Scope yes...the mount no

The mount is already perfectly drift aligned, so that will save me a lot of time during imaging sessions, plus the fact that the mount will be "Parked" after every imaging session so I might actually start recording Periodic Error to utilise PEC on the mount. I'll also then move over to controlling the mount entirely by Software as opposed to the hand controller
8 years 9 months ago #98319

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Replied by CarlightExpress on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

I also got one of these for the mount and Pier

www.green-witch.com/acatalog/Cases_and_Bags.html
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8 years 9 months ago #98320

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Replied by martinus on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Have any of you kept a mount outside for a long duration with this kind of protection? I'm wondering how well such a cover prevents moisture getting to the mount. Some of the bolts on my EQ6 have a very small amount of corrosion on them and it was kept in a roll-off shed by the previous owner.
8 years 9 months ago #98330

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Replied by stang on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

I leave mine out 24/7 with the scope attached. I just take my cameras off and tie the cover with a couple of cheapo bungee cords. I leave the USB hub etc. outside under the cover too with no issues. The only other thing I do as a precaution is put one of these into the focuser www.farpointastro.com/desiccant/desiCap.php

I went for the Telegizmo 365 cover after reading this review;
www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=1945

In terms of improving the amount of time I spend under the stars it's been the best thing I've bought in years. Now I just run a power cable out, a USB cable in and away I go.
Gareth
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8 years 9 months ago #98331

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Replied by stang on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Oh and just in case there are any opportunistic chancers lurking out there, this is Grizzly- he's Chief of Telescope security and takes his muzzle off before bedtime!!

Gareth
8 years 9 months ago #98332

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Replied by martinus on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Excellent! Thanks. :)

Have you ever found Grizzly attempting to face off against Sirius?
8 years 9 months ago #98333

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Replied by Marto on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Hi Stang, is it true those dessicant pouches can be revitalised by heating in microwave?

And on the point about time under the stars... that's the crucial thing - time. I find that making your hobbies easy to access is a recipe for happiness. If that means the odd rusty bolt.... I'm not dissuaded.
8 years 9 months ago #98361

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Replied by martinus on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

They can be dried out in a conventional oven.

I don't think a microwave would be a good idea but if you've got a spare one and a video camera there's the possibility of a large number of views on youtube. ;)
8 years 9 months ago #98366

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Replied by stang on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

They can be dried out in a conventional oven.


Thanks for that- didn't know that- will give it a try although my particular ones are in a plastic covering so I'm a little skeptical- I'll be popular at home if I melt them all over the oven!

And on the point about time under the stars... that's the crucial thing - time. I find that making your hobbies easy to access is a recipe for happiness. If that means the odd rusty bolt.... I'm not dissuaded.


Couldn't agree more- once the clouds part you gotta be out there!


Well this thread is well and truly off topic now Simon!! Sorry about that--Congrats on the pier! ;)
Gareth
8 years 9 months ago #98367

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Replied by martinus on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Sorry, I was referring to the beads that one gets in fabric pouches or the chalky tablets.

There's a bit more info on reactivating the gel here: www.desican.ca/html/silica-gel-indicating-type.html

Those desiccant caps can be cheaply made by piercing the bottom of a 35mm film can full of holes using a darning needle and pouring silica beads in. Cheap and effective.
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8 years 9 months ago #98369

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Replied by albertw on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

No eBay APP ID défined in Kunena configurationHi,

You can get bags of re-activateable silica gel on ebay pretty cheaply. e.g. Not all silica can be reused I don't think, but the beads in that link for example change colour when they are saturated with moisture and can be reactivated in a regular oven. How often you need to reactivate will depend on how free from moisture you keep your equipment in the first place.

The quotes I got for the pier I was planning for the observatory were ridiculous! Buying the steel and a welder and taking a welding course would have been cheaper than what one place quoted me! Your setup looks really well Simon.


Best Wishes,
~Albert
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
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8 years 9 months ago #98378

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Replied by CarlightExpress on topic Re: My new Steel Pier....Finally

Thanks Albert
8 years 9 months ago #98381

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