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Short term obsy


Ryan-y
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Where to start?!

A few months ago I saw an advert offering a ror obsy to anyone willing to collect it. After imagining being able to forget about polar alignmen I jumped at the opportunity. The trouble is, it's one of those flimsy metal argos jobys and security isn't its strong point. Plus it's 8x10 which is far too big for my garden and I'd never get permission from the other half. So my plan is to half the size and build a timber structure to fix the metal walls to as a water proof low maintenance shell. I have already began the build and have got as far as the timber structure. It's never going to be the best obsy in the world and if I owned the house and had a bit of cash saved up I would definitely be doing things differently. But if I end up with a fairly secure dry place I can leave my mount set up that's going to last a couple of years I'll be happy.

We don't own the house and we will be moving within the next 6 months so concrete piers and foundations are a no no and it will need to come apart quite easily. the mount will be on its tripod resting on slabs layed underneath the base. The shed itself is held up by wooden steaks into the soil.

From what I've read amongst the obsy threa five foot is largely considered too small for an obsy but after getting the walls up I got my scope and mount in there to make sure I won't catch any walls and everything seems ok. The scope is an ed80 on a heq5 and I will probably be replacing the obsy before set up, can anyone see any problems I would have with this other it being awkward to move around in. It would be possible to add another foot to the width but this would cause problems with the roof I have.

Another question I have is what to put between the outer shell and the timber. Obviously metal sheds have trouble with condensation so I don't want it to have direct contact with the timber, can anyone suggest a membrane I could use? Any other suggestions would be much appreciated.

Cheers

Ryan

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To be honest I have been seriously considering cladding it, deep down I know it's the better option. Guess I'll take a trip to the timber yard after work. My girlfriends gonna screw when she realises I'm not using the shed that's been piled up in the garden for the last three months! :)

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Ryan - nice build judging by the photos and I'll follow with interest as in a very similar predicament (long term let, but no security of tenure and no realistic oppurtunity to buy on the horizon). However, this does appear to be a pretty substantial/massive build for a temporary structure and by the time you have pannelled (metal or wood) and probably insulated the wall sections they are going to be quite an effort to move. No doubts on the quality of the design and certain that this will transport and give many years of use. Although it has set me thinking, if its possible to design and build a modular observatory with smaller bolt together panels (say 1000x500mm panels) that could be more easilly taken down and stored if necessary.

No problem to engineer this this of course, the trick is to do it with readilly available and reasonably priced materials. Apart from the obvious functional requirements, some attention would have to be paid to form to keep the peace at home!

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Yeah the idea is when I move I can take it down buy a few rolls of turf and no one would ever know. You're right it's going to be a two man job but I'm sure I'll be able to get a hand off a mate.

My parents have got a concrete garage built like that - basically a load of slabs that bolt together. If you'd plan to move it alone it sounds like a great idea, the only problem I could see is if you were to clad each panel individually how you could keep the weather out the gaps. I suppose you could get some sort of T profiled plastic that could be clamped between the joints. Oh, and coach bolts are blumming exspensive! :)

That is a nice dome but I think the mrs would hate it! And for the exact reasons I like it (too techy and siencey looking) plus as people say, they scream out 'expensive equiptment inside'. Not to mention the price of them.

I think I'm sold on the cladding idea now, it's another £150 odd pound I was hoping to save but it would do a better job and it would look a lot nicer too. I'd still have to use a membrane between that and the structure wouldn't I? Can anyone point me in the right direction?

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Ryan, good point on the dome - might well invite the wrong sort of attention and be a worry.

My misses wouldnt mind too much as long as it looked neat and tidy - but a posh shed may be better camouflage.

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Right shiplap bought, it's only 12mm but it still cost £170! Just waiting for my dad to get back with his van so I can go and fetch the osb I shall use this time to make amends with my girlfriend by tidying the house while she's at work ;)

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Had quite a productive day. Didn't get home with the osb till half six last night so I didn't get much done yesterday, but I managed to finish boarding it and got it cladded today. I'm definitely glad I went for the timber cladding, it does look much nicer.

still a long way to go though, just hope the weather stays good for tomorrow!

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I now feel very inadequate for considering to buy one, if i go down that route.

If you need anyone to come and watch and drink tea, i'm just up the road in south nottingham :)

I hope the weather stays good for you today.

James

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Ah, just finished my tea!

made good progress today. My girlfriends parents have just had a new kitchen floor and I had to go and refit their plinths, so I didn't get started till gone two, but the weather held up and I managed to get the roof built. I still need to clad it and put the tin panels on but I'm happy with how things are coming together.

I think after another good weekend it could be more or less cleaned up.

james - where abouts are you? I grew up in eastbridgford, I've only been here a couple of years. I'm not sure that's a good idea, I had some friends come round yesterday, progress slowed to a standstill and I ended up drinking to much beer to realistically be using a chopsaw :)

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Thats looking pretty neat Ryan!

I see you mention 5 foot as one of the dimentiones for your observatory but is it 5' square? I am begining to look at building one and will be restricted to 5' wide and maybe 7' long although thats to fit a 8" newt.

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Thanks davie. Although its been beaten by the rain today, I'm glad I got it as water tight as I did!

Yeah I saw your thread. Mines 8'x5' and it is quite small inside. Obviously I can't speak for your 8" newt but my ed80 has plenty space to move around without hitting any walls or anything and I'm going to have it to one end in a sort of 5'x5' square if you like, which will give me a few feet at the other end for a modest desk etc. I'm not really going use the obsy for observing so I'm not too concerned about moving around the scope too much.

I guess it comes down to, if its that or nothing and it will work (maybe a little bit awkwardly) then It depends how much you hate PA :)

It may be a good idea to set up up a 7'x5' area (as suggested) with all your kit in and see what you think. Also it might be a good idea to put a pic of your intended site on your thread so we could see why you're restricted to 7'x5' someone might be able to suggest an ingenious way around it :)

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I have never designed or made an observatory or have the skills to do so. The shed looks good but when it is cold or damp will condensation not come down the roof into the observatory with the way the roof is sloped? If the roof was reversed by 180 degrees it would run down onto the outside. This is just from a layman's perspective and you can feel free to tell me to mind my own business.

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Thanks guys. Of course there is still a snagging list but at least it's usable :)

Gina - it's not quite in the same league as your obsy, but I'm happy with how it worked last night.

M.tweedy - tbh I hadn't given it a thought. I did it that way to maximise the views. I guess it's something I'll have to keep an eye on. If worst comes to worst I've got a couple of lengths of 2x4 spare and I could extend the frame to allow the roof to totally clear the wall, thanks for pointing that out.

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The shed looks good but when it is cold or damp will condensation not come down the roof into the observatory with the way the roof is sloped? If the roof was reversed by 180 degrees it would run down onto the outside.

That is a good point, as there is the opportunity for water to run into the observatory as the roof is being opened.

Ryan - is it too late to turn the roof around 180deg? Or could you perhaps to fit a bit of guttering to take any water away to one side of the observatory?

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The roof could be turned around, but with such a short width the extra height makes quite bit of difference to the views.

I had planned on guttering it eventually, as you say this would solve any issues. Guess I should bump it up the list of prioritys.

I'm not massively happy with the roof tbh. It was from the original metal shed and its a bit on the small side, I'd like to have a bit more of an overhang. What are peoples thoughts on corrugated bitumen sheet regarding condensation etc. I probably wouldn't replace this until I move (which I've found out since starting will be in three months!!)

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