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Thread: Pier Mount Project

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    Default Pier Mount Project



    Hi, after much deliberation I decided to go for a pier mount built into my back deck. An observatory, or skyshed would be way too big so a pier is my only option. Having looked around, most start at around $700 upwards, plus taxes and shipping and they aint light!!! So after chatting to a colleague at work, he knew a guy in a local welding shop who happens to have a piece of steel tubing lying around.
    So armed with a drawing I paid him a visit and for $300 he made me my new pier. I am still waiting for an HEQ5 adapter plate from Altair Astro, but I can at least start getting the ground work planned now. I am going to dig a 4 foot deep hole and using a sono tube, concrete my foundation for the pier so the pier will come up through my deck.
    Any tips or advice greatly appreciated, it's the first time I've had a go at this. BTW I built the deck myself, so I can alter as required As you can see the pics my viewing is limited by the houses, not a lot I can do about it, and it hasn't stopped my getting some great pics, just gotta wait for the seasons to come around.

    Clear skies to all
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    Default

    No suggestions. Just wanted to wish you success on the project and commiserate with you on the teeny patch of sky you've got. Guess I'll stop complaining about my trees now.
    Last edited by KathyNS; 06-15-2011 at 11:08 PM.

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    Default

    Thanks Keith. I can see well to the north, and between the houses to the SE, I can get objects as they rise, once they are 15deg or higher but not for long. But objects over our house have to get to 60deg alt before I can see them, oh well. Its gonna hamper my Messier project, I'll have to go elsewhere to get the lower objects.
    Lots of digging to do before its all done

    Clear skies to all

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    Default

    Great work !
    Keep on !
    Standing up the mountain high,Looking down the window street,People all over the world (10X50 binocula

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    Default

    Nice mount and idea. I guess the LP south of me is better than the buildings in your site. How large of a diameter tube are you using? Are you using steel and a footing? What is the distance between the deck and the ground?
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    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by jimgrimm View Post
    Nice mount and idea. I guess the LP south of me is better than the buildings in your site. How large of a diameter tube are you using? Are you using steel and a footing? What is the distance between the deck and the ground?
    The deck varies from 10 inches to about 18 inches above ground level. The tube is 6 inch diameter, and the top and bottom plates are 6mm thick steel. The tube is a heavy weight walled tube, not sure how thick as I didn't see it before it was built. But I guess it weighs around 50lbs+ as it is. The top and bottom plates are 10 inch diamter. I plan on diggin a 4 foot deep concrete footing to bolt the pier to, basically so I can move on the deck without disturbing the OTA. It has to be 4 foot deep to get below the frost line as it can get to -35C here in the winter.

    As for my site, it is a bit restrictive but I get most objects as they start to set in the SW and West. I sometimes get up early morning just for particular objects, or just stay up very late. I have managed to capture over 70 Messier objects since September last year, just by waiting for them to appear. Anyway here are a couple more pictures of the back yard.

    The pictures are, in order:-

    1) South West
    2) North North West
    3) North North East
    4) North
    5) South East




    Clear Skies to all please

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    Default

    Man that looks like a great pier you have in the works. Keep us posted.
    name: Derek

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    Default

    I too was shocked by the prices commercial Pier manufactures wanted for BOTH the piers and especially the Pier plates and went the same route you took and found a local fabrication shop to make me one... Saved some serious money in the process...PLUS the shipping charges I would have had to pay were eliminated,.. I just tossed it in the bed of my truck.

    Bob G.
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    Looks great! You save alot of money doing one yourself or with local shop! You will be very happy with the new pier once you are finished. Best of Luck and Clear Skies!

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    Smile

    Hi guys, heres an update on the pier project. We have a hole!!! We even have concrete in the hole!!! We rented an auger for 4 hours from Home Depot, and me and my son had some fun digging the hole. I made a ply-wood template for the J-bolts to go in the concrete so they will set in the right position. So there we have it, hole dug, filled and bolts set in place.

    48 hours before it useable, so now I can get on cleaning up the pier post ready for painting.

    Thats all for now

    Clear Skies to all
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