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Lockie

Chris's Obsy build

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Hi Helen, you find 3' ok thats interesting:) What are your obsy dimensions if you don't mind me asking? Like you say I would build the outside first then partition the insde but I wanted an Idea of the viewing area dimension so I know where to place the pier as I'm thinking its probably best to place it central in the viewing area? ah well this is a good question, is it best to place the pier central? and whats the minimum distance you could have the pier to a wall?, assuming initially I'd have a 6" newt guided, then eventually move upto something like an 8" RC guided. p.s. I would love a pic of what a 3' warm room looks like, or am I pushing my luck:D

My dimensions are 11 foot by 8 foot (external). Some pictures are here Stargazers Lounge - Helen's Album: Helen's Obs You've got me thinking now... so I'll measure my warm room tomorrow. I'll also measure my distances to walls etc.

Helen

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Wow! Helen your obsy is a piece of art and good enough to live in:icon_salut:

I'm thinking that might be a bit more than 3' though?:D if it is 3' then like you say its definately workable and I'll knock a few inches of my warm room and add them to the viewing area, I recken it looks 3'6" though:D

Thanks in advance for doing some measuring, I'm very interested in you opinion about what the minimum room around the pier should be when using average sized optics e.g. 6-8"?

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Thanks Chris. It actually looks a little different now as I've had a new roof (much lighter and easier to handle, although doesn't look as good!).

The warm room is 3 foot 2inches wide. I'll measure pier distances tomorrow for you.

Helen

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Thanks for the encouragement shellfish:) its all go here spreading my time between looking after our 5 month old boy, my career as a heath care professional, researching the obsy and doing the graft for it, so if you have Dimmoks phone number it would be very handy:D

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oh yeah Helen if I remember right you changed it for coroline and insulation board, I felt the weight of a coroline sheet in B&Q and it was very light indeed, good stuff:)

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I've been doing some costing and lots of obsy thread reading as well as looking at logistics, and I'm getting the strong impression that buidling from scratch might not be the best way forward in my particular situation, so I might have to lose the full sense of achievement that some of you guys have definately earned and base the obsy on a modified shed.

I began by costing the external cladding for the 4 walls (2 walls 3mx2m, and 2 walls 2mx2m, hence 20 sqm). For 18mm cladding the price ranged from 410-500 pounds depending on quality, and 330 pounds for 12mm cladding as found on medium/good quality sheds. I'm thinking I might be able to get hold of a whole 12mm T&G shed for around 330 pounds and not just the cladding for the 4 walls? I'll be researching suitable sheds as my next step.

I also previously neglected to factor in the replacement of my back fence and gate into my 800 pound budget, so realistally my budget is closer to 600 pounds at a guess? and from what I can gather a modified shed is the cheapest option without going out and reclaiming wood.

Logistically also the shed conversion sits better as I've got a lot of professional and parental responsibilities plus I need to limit the number of large deliveries to my house as it is quite difficult to get large objects down the narrow passageways past quite a few terest houses to my garden:(

I know I'm sacrificing quality doing things this way but can anyone recommend a suitable T&G shed to use, p.s. having shown my wife some of the obsy builds on here she likes the ones that have made seating areas under the RoR supports, so on a plus she has agreed a 6'x10' shed as long as I have it right at the back of the garden with the RoR facing towards the house so she can have a seating area:) Weirdly 10' sheds are cheaper than 9' sheds as a bonus!

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Hi Chris, my misses and I have decided to do up our garden and I through out there the idea or an obsy build when we were doing it and result she agreed! So I will be starting the ground work soon hopefully Sunday. I'll be keeping an eye on ur thread for some ideas. I'll need to get on here and look at some others builds too. Looking forward to ur posts. I will start a thread as soon as the ground work begins! Clear skys ~ stu ~

Sent from my HTC Desire HD A9191 using Tapatalk

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Congrats on getting the go ahead Stu:) Theres lots of great ideas on here so enjoy researching, the more I research the more I change my mind about things, so I guess its sensible to keep on researching until I can't improve on my plans with my budget. Lets hope it stays dry so we can get some work done:D I'll look out for your thread:)

Chris

Edited by starfox

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Chris, I think you've just discovered that for projects such as this there is no such thing as a cheap observatory, be that self build or adapting a commercial shed. We have two 7 x 5 pent sheds in the garden, purchased from a local company. These have decent framing and quality tongue and groove, but still would require bracing once the roof was sectioned. These sheds cost £375 around 4 years ago. I've checked an online supplier of similar sheds and a 10 x 6 is £795... and that's without the base on which to site it and the additional materials to modify the roof.

I guess the options are to buy cheap from B&Q or Homebase and then look short term rather than building something now which will last long term and need little maintenance.

I've just done a quick calculation for a 2.4m x 2.4m structure based on a framework made from Cheap old Wikes studding ( £1.86 a length) with 18" centres, clad in their standard shiplap and it came to £65 for the studding (28 lengths) and £307 for the shiplap. I would of thought that £175 - £200 would cover the sheet material for the roof, felt, rollers and timber for the out-rigger to support the roof, plus the floor - making this well within your £600 budget. My guess is that with careful shopping around you could reduce this material cost.

However I can't answer your concerns over deliveries etc. For me I scheduled everything for a Friday delivery, which meant that the materials were only stored for a short time in the house (yes one time I had 80 x 5.2m lengths of shiplap running the length of the hall and into the kitchen, plus four 8 x 4 sheets of 12mm ply, and ten sheets of 8 x 4 x 4mm ply stacked up against the wall ready for the weekend work of cladding the structure ! - an understanding wife / partner is essential :D )

Which ever way you choose to go with your build, my only advice would be to really think it through and research the costings of all the items to the last penny. Shop around for items, and budget for each section of the build. Ideally I would suggest the build is done in one go, which would require a week or two off work and decent weather. Trying to do a self build project over weekends and evenings is possible, but can leave the structure exposed to rain etc.

Edited by malc-c

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Hi Malc- thanks for you comments and costings:) your right in that I had only costed the cladding and for the really cheap stuff it was like you say low to mid 300's. I compared this to the price of the following whole sheds with similar cladding but perhaps without the same centres, but I would add a lot of metal right angle bracing as well as wood to strengthen plus the partition will add strengh, I will also be adding moisture barrier membranes and it will sit on a frame with 3-4 coats of creo, plus the whole shed will be coated many times to boot:D Your sheds sound very expensive if you don't mind me saying, I wonder what you make of the links below?:( If the structure lasts the 5-7 years we plan on being in this terest house then I would be happy:)

BillyOh 300M Windowless Classic Value Tongue and Groove Apex Shed - Garden Sheds - Garden Buildings Direct

BillyOh 4000M Windowless Lincoln Tongue and Groove Double Door Apex Garden Shed - Garden Sheds - Garden Buildings Direct

Walton's 10' x 6' Select Tongue & Groove Apex Shed (No Windows)

http://www.shedsworld.co.uk/p/Dura-Shed_10ft_x_6ft_%282.99m_x_1.79m%29_Apex_Shiplap_Shed.htm

Again thanks for your time, and like you say I will be doing more costing for several options but I'm certainly leaning towards a shed conversion:):D

Edited by starfox

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Have you considered metal sheds? No treatment needed, no membranes and a simple 2x2 wooden framework to replace the one provided (and a 3x2 frame for the roof)? I think you will be surprised at the overall costs.

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Hi Bizidilder, I considered a metal shed, I've heard that their can be problems with condensation and being too hot in the summer though, do you have these issues?

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Not really - in the winter there can occasionally be a little condensation on the inner walls but this has not been a problem (certainly not enough to run down the walls!). In the summer there is no heat problem as my shed (Yardmaster) has several large vent holes designed into the apex of the roof so air can circulate freely - hence it stays quite cool even after being in direct sunlight all day.

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Seems like Chris and I are in the same boat, planning obsy builds, and finding our heads spinning with options and costs! :D I'd also be very interested to hear how the metal shed has worked out for you. It has a lot of plus points, like price, strength and water resistence, but my big concern is cooking all the gear stored in it during the summer months...

-- edit--

Oooh, you replied while I was composing... Very interested to hear that the summer heat hasn't been an issue for you. Is your obsy quite exposed? Does it get the Sun on it all day long?

Edited by samtheeagle

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From what I've seen of commercial wooden sheds the construction seems pretty poor unless you spend a grand or more on a deluxe shed. I would think a metal shed would be easier to adapt in many ways and will last well.

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That's my concern with commercial shed. I've found a few on the intertubes that seem ok, but not being able to see the up close it's hard to know what sort of quality you're going to get. I've just been reading through Bizidilder blog, and I must admit the metal shed option looks very tempting indeed. Relatively speaking, it looks like a quite simple build.

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Have a look in my blog (see signature and goto summer 2010, I think) and this link: Linnhe: Home of Mark S Baines & Linnhe Observatory to see how to do the conversion. My own one has a wooden frame inside to replace the metal one provided. It is assembled with the same number of screws as the metal shed (hundreds!) and is very strong when complete. As the roof simply screws on all round with a few (dozen!) screws it is easy to put a frame around it to make it sturdy enough to be moveable. The steel sheet it is made from is quite thin and flimsy when you first see it but with the frame and its own corrugations it ends up very strong.

If you go for this sort of thing I would suggest that a powered cut off saw is worth its weight in gold for this sort of project - I bought a cheap one from Argos and it served me well. I can saw straight but the power saw (with the ability to cut perfect 45° cuts) really paid for itself.

Edited by Bizibilder

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Chris, if you look at the framing spec for those sheds it's typically 25mm x 25mm (or 1" x 1") - and at around 30" centres... IMO juts not sturdy enough. The studwork I used was 63mm x 38mm (1.5" x 2.5" in old money). If I was going to go for 24" centres I would of used 2" x 3" for the framework.

Yes those sheds we purchased were "quality" sheds. The framework is 1.75" x 1.25" at 22" centres. But if I was going to use one of these I still would of braced the corners between two panels.

The metal shed (often run as a special offer from Argos) is one option, and there has been a build thread in the last 12 months where it was framed out using 2" x 3" timber and came within a similar budget. The chap next door has one of these for storing his garden tools, and in the summer it's like an oven inside it, however I guess it will cool down a lot quicker at night ?

We're all different, what worked for me won't work for you or vice-versa. I don't know your financial situation, and capabilities, or what you want to achieve at the final goal. If your budget is fixed then you'll have to compromise. It's never cut and dry, but your are doing the right thing by canvasing peoples opinions, but at the end of the day it's your choice, your project and above all, your money, so its your choice as to how your proceed.

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If you go for this sort of thing I would suggest that a powered cut off saw is worth its weight in gold for this sort of project - I bought a cheap one from Argos and it served me well. I can saw straight but the power saw (with the ability to cut perfect 45° cuts) really paid for itself.

+1 on that. I purchased a compound mitre chop saw from Screwfix - approx £90 and I couldn't of managed without it.... Using a stop to cut identical lengths over and over again, each with nice square ends... it was a godsend :D

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I went for slightly larger timbers for my framework but further apart. 3x2 in old money or 75x47mm and 19-20" or 50mm apart with 150x22mm shiplap cladding. It's STRONG! :) But I like strong :D. I can walk on my roof without anything giving way or sagging. Yet the roll-off part is light enough to be easily moved with one hand. I'm very pleased with it and glad I took advice from Malcolm and others to build it strong. :D I have a deluxe obsy :(

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You have to be careful with tin sheds - they are NOT all the same!! Especially when it comes to ventilation etc.

I've just measured mine and the roof has 18 "slits" along the apex - formed by the corrugations in the roof panels - that measure roughly 7.5" x 3/4" giving a total area of around 100 square inches (like a 10"x10" hole in the roof!!). This is on a nominal 6'x6' metal shed - no wonder it stays cool in the summer!!

Edited by Bizibilder

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I've had no problems with rain coming through the vents (Linnhe is built on the coast in Scotland where most of the weather is horizontal - hence the need to cover the vents). It's even had 6" of snow on it, again with no water ingress when it thawed.

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