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 Post subject: Mini pier
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:06 am 
Just finished installing my mini pier in the back garden, it's basically a great lump of 6x6 timber, treated and concreted in the ground about 2feet deep ..... I know wood isn't ideal as it moves but at this thickness and length I don't think it should be to much of a problem. It would be a different story if I was coming out of the ground 4or even 5feet as this would leave more timber exposed to the elements and would be prone to twist or warp so not ideal..... I only need it this high so I can feed all the wires through the window behind and control from inside.
Note the aluminium pier top that accepts my mount head, made by Brian that simply bolted onto the timber top.
The only problem I can see is that I'm going to have to lie down on the ground to polar align next clear evening, but all being well I should only have to do this once !!
Attachment:
mini pier.JPG
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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Tue Feb 05, 2013 11:58 am 
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Location: Bolton
dean_kos wrote:
I'm going to have to lie down on the ground to polar align next clear evening

If you just get an approximate alignment with your polar-scope, then you'll be able to use the declination drift method with your webcam to get it spot-on. But methinks that will take more than one evening!


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 4:11 pm 
A few people asked me last night why I had installed the pier so close to the ground that it didn't seem practical. If I was using the scope for observing then they would be right as I wouldnt fancy kneeling in the flower bed to try and look throught the eyepiece. But, as I just do mainly imaging now it dosn't make much difference.
As you can see in the picture the inside of the house steps down from the garden, so the scope is virtually at the perfect height for controlling through the window, and sitting on the sofa ! I can actually set up the scope on the mount and wire everything together from inside.
From this position I can image anything in the East, most of the South and a fair bit of North but nothing to the West because of the house but you cant have everything all the time eh.
The scope will be very sheltered from wind in this position also so once its polar aligned it should be a very sturdy set up with the added bonus that I dont need to keep polar aligning every session, and there is no danger of me kicking the tripod once set up which I still seem to manage to do even though I'm telling myself not to !!
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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 5:06 pm 
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dean_kos wrote:
The scope will be very sheltered from wind in this position

And I guess the lower it is, the better it's shielded from neighbourhood lights too?


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 6:27 pm 
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Location: Bury
You do what suits.

But that is a good example of arm chair astronomy. :D

Enjoy it

_________________
Celestron 11" Telescope
Eq6 Pro Mount
Eq5 Mount
EQ Mod
QHY5 Guide camera
Cannon 1000D SLR Camera

I choose to image with an 11" SCT Celestron in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard......


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:31 pm 
Managed to get it all polar aligned this evening and proceeded to fit the scope and wire it all up...... Seems to work perfectly for what I intended, that is, being able to do everything from inside the house.
I also managed to take a five minute exposure through my c8, guided of course, and the stars still be round ! This is the first time I have taken anything over 30 seconds through this scope and not got trailing, so very pleased. After an initial problem of the dec axis being turned off in phd (thanks Ross for the help) but then nothing in astronomy works perfectly first time every time eh


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Thu Feb 07, 2013 8:02 am 
That's fantastic Dean.Let's hope you can put your new found freedom from the shackles of portable setup issues & finally be able to use it for the purpose you bought it for - imaging DSO's that exceed a minute each frame!!!
Cheers
Andy


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 12:58 pm 
Made a modification to my mount on the pier today so that i can use the Starwave and guide at the same time whithout having to mount the Starwave on top of my C8 !!
Its a dovetail cut into some hardwood to accept the refractor with the guide camera permanently attached to the front of it so the scopes can be changed with ease but the guide camera remains on the mount.
It works fine as a prototype but could really do with being made from metal...........Brian !!
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File comment: dovetail attachment plus guidecam
mount.JPG
mount.JPG [ 160.68 KiB | Viewed 6492 times ]
Attachment:
File comment: mini pier plus starwave
mount2.JPG
mount2.JPG [ 163.32 KiB | Viewed 6492 times ]


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:27 pm 
looks like your cooking now mate...
good effort


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 Post subject: Re: Mini pier
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:46 pm 
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Location: Bury
Looks good mate :D

_________________
Celestron 11" Telescope
Eq6 Pro Mount
Eq5 Mount
EQ Mod
QHY5 Guide camera
Cannon 1000D SLR Camera

I choose to image with an 11" SCT Celestron in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard......


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