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Cost effecetive (Cheap) pier - ideas / comments please


A40farinagolf
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I'm thinking of using my CPC925 tripod as a permanent pier.

This would involve me securing the stainless steel legs into the vertical position and then casting them into concrete at the correct height.

My HD wedge would still connect without any problems and without the wedge the scope would work in AZ mode.

This would save me spending circa £500 on a pier and would also mean that the tripod is being utilized. Can you suggest any snags with this idea or any improvements please?

For semi portable purposes I would use my 130mm APO on AZ EQ6GT mount.

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Don't go wasting a perfectly fine tripod. Fill a 6" underground pvc pipe with concrete and rebar then have a pier adapter made to fit the mount to the pier. Total cost should be no more than you budgeted for plus you will still have the tripod and be portable with the CPC925 should the need ever call.

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You could get a steel pier made up by your local "steel fabricator" (the folk who make decorative gates and fire escapes etc).  If they can do it from their "offcuts" then you can probably get one for around £50-80.  Paint it yourself and the whole job should be under £100.  That way you don't ruin a perfectly good tripod and the cost won't be much more than the concrete/shuttering/mould etc that you will need anyway. Additionally the pier will be semi=portable.

post-4502-0-53492400-1421007478.jpg

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Thanks for the feedback so far - much appreciated and I agree burying S Steel in concrete does seem a bit criminal, but my immediate outlay would be virtually zero.

Startlight 1 - do you mean the triangular casting that the leg mounting bolts go through at the top?

Using that would be a very good idea as would provide best of both worlds - look forward to seeing the photos, you could pm them to me if you have problems attaching to the forum. 

Thanks,

M

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Thanks for the feedback so far - much appreciated and I agree burying S Steel in concrete does seem a bit criminal, but my immediate outlay would be virtually zero.

Startlight 1 - do you mean the triangular casting that the leg mounting bolts go through at the top?

Using that would be a very good idea as would provide best of both worlds - look forward to seeing the photos, you could pm them to me if you have problems attaching to the forum. 

Thanks,

M

Yes that right on top of a stainless steel post no painting.

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Roger,

Your BlogSpot is excellent and I aspire to be able to produce images as good as yours soon, I'm still a beginner to AP but keen to learn.

This is hijacking the thread a bit but please can you explain the jargon for my benefit as I don't understand it.

400/2000 frames for each pane stacked in AS2?

and sharpened using L-R Deconv via Astra image 3?

Finished and stitched in PS?

Regards,

M

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Thanks for the images Startlight, much appreciated and it looks very simple / elegant / cost effective.

In principle I could copy your idea but adapt the top flange to suit the top of my CPC925 tripod, I could remove the tripod legs and connect the triangular casting to the S Steel pier by reusing the existing nuts / bolts. 

Did you fill the box section with concrete and rebar or is it just hollow?

Regards,

M

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A40farinagolf the "jargon" answers are: 

400/2000 means I took a video of 4000 frames in length and used the software to stack the best 400 of them - the other 1600 are discarded.  AS2 refers to the stacking freeware Autostakkert2.

L-R Deconv in Astra Image 3.0 means I used "Lucy- Richardson deconvolution" to sharpen the final stacked image that was output from the stacking program.  A free version if this L-R software is provided by "Astra Image 3.0"

Finished and stitched means a few "tweaks" were applied to the sharpened image and than all the panes of the mosaic were combined (or stitched together) in PS, Which is Photoshop Image processing software which, unfortunately, is far from free!!

Hope that helps.

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As you say scrap lead is expensive

Out of curiosity if scrap lead costs circa £0.9 / Kg and guessing on the pier sizes you'd need approx.

14cm x 14cm x 125cm = 24500cm3

@ 11.3g/cm3 (density of lead) = 277Kg = £250 to fill it. (lead shot wouldn't be as dense as pure lead so assume 90% of £250 so £225 

Pea gravel  / concrete might be a prefereable. :-)

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I went round to my tyre dealer and asked for some old weights to make up the counterweight I needed.

I doubt they'd give you 1/4 tonne though.

I don't doubt that a car breaker yard would have a lot though. I bet he'd sell it at less than the market value of lead shot.

I still feel that filling the shaft with concrete is a better option.

I made up the top of my pier using a li-ion hand drill and  a hole saw. I didn't use the tripod top at all.

Made up the top plate with correct thickness steel to give clearance and drilled through then welded the plate to the top of the pier plate which was predrilled and threaded for the Azimuth lug.

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Don't go wasting a perfectly fine tripod. Fill a 6" underground pvc pipe with concrete and rebar then have a pier adapter made to fit the mount to the pier. Total cost should be no more than you budgeted for plus you will still have the tripod and be portable with the CPC925 should the need ever call.

Great idea, I know that a Skoda Disc for £20.00  is a perfect fit for a HEQ5, perhaps there is something to fit the OPs scope.

A.G

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I used a 300mm dia galvanised length of airconditioning duct - filled with concrete and re-bar...and it ain't going anywhere.

The mount adapter that I used isn't being made anymore, but the brake disc idea would work well. It's really easy to drill fixings into the set concrete or set in studs before it sets.

post-6387-0-73515700-1421367098_thumb.jp

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Thanks to everyone for your comments and feedback, I'm still at the planning stage and hopefully construction will start mid spring.

Perfect skies last night and spent 3 hours outside with the CPC925 - a rare treat especially as I took a glass of Lagavulin with me.

Not much of the Christmas spirit left  :laugh: as it seems to evaporate.

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