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Les Ewan

Slide Off Roof For £20(so Far)

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Les Ewan    156

Over the years Ive gathered a lot stuff from peoples gardens my latest acquisition was a lorry load of old decking boards.So I decided Id use some of them to build a slide off roof observatory.

I probably broke every cardinal rule in observatory building working to no set plan but having a week off, the nice weather and it being autumn I thought I'd best jump into it.

The only items I bought were 75X75 posts 2 metre posts for about £20 the slabs, screws,felt and nails were all given to me over the years.

The roof is a bit heavier than I intended as the lighter weight planks I was going to use were too uneven and bowed to take the felt so I used decking boards.Although heavy I have no trouble opening and closing the roof (taking less than 30 seconds to for each operation),though I may fit the roof with casters at some stage.The big plus with the weight of the roof is I dont think even a hurricane would shift it although I will fit some sort of lock to it just in case.I used it last night with my 8" equatorial Newt even though 2 walls and door are still missing and every thing was fine(except the seeing).

Hopefully I should get the main structure finished today,and the slabbing tomorrow though I'll probably replace the floor with concrete some time.

 

Obs1.JPG

Obs2.JPG

Obs3.JPG

Obs4.jpg

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Alan White    821

Watching this with interest Les, thanks for sharing your build.

An economy version and no plan , just my style, so very much of interest?

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tooth_dr    481

Will keep an eye on this also. Are you planning on keeping stuff permanently in there?

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Les Ewan    156

Thanks for the interest Alan,Toothdr,

Yes I plan this to be the permanent home of my 200mm f5 Newtonian,and also storage for a 90mm f10 refractor.

Les.

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tooth_dr    481
Just now, Les Ewan said:

Thanks for the interest Alan,Toothdr,

Yes I plan this to be the permanent home of my 200mm f5 Newtonian,and also storage for a 90mm f10 refractor.

Les.

 

Very good. Having built two wooden observatories myself, ain't nothing better! Are you looking for any advice yet? Lol

My roof is 12x8 and it flipped right off one night so don't be fooled!

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Les Ewan    156

Toothdr,

Although I had a rough idea in my head of what I wanted this project was largely made up as I went along,luckily however I came across no major problems.I'll take no chances with my beloved scopes Ill definitely devise something to lock the roof in place during windy weather,as the storms in  recent years have shown us trampolines can be lifted from peoples gardens with ease and my roof is lighter than a full sized trampoline.

Les.

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Alan White    821

Plenty of members on SGL have lost roofs to the wind on observatories, Ollypenrice, Gina, MikeDknight are the 3 I recall straight off, it will need to be clamped down when closed to resist any gusts over time.

 

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tooth_dr    481
2 minutes ago, Les Ewan said:

Toothdr,

Although I had a rough idea in my head of what I wanted this project was largely made up as I went along,luckily however I came across no major problems.I'll take no chances with my beloved scopes Ill definitely devise something to lock the roof in place during windy weather,as the storms in  recent years have shown us trampolines can be lifted from peoples gardens with ease and my roof is lighter than a full sized trampoline.

Les.

 

Hi Les

 

Do you get much rain?

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Les Ewan    156

Thanks for the advice Alan,I was thinking maybe a couple of hefty  coach bolts with wingnuts may do the trick.Toothdr,yes the rain did stop play this afternoon but I did get the main structure completed before it set in,just the door to make now. Just before I finished for the afternoon my hens came round to look things over,they seemed to think I was going through all this hard work for their benefit!

Les59ac591b860fd_Hens03_09_17.thumb.JPG.5e647d5ac9913159aedd637c7b2997f7.JPG

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gtis    599

Hi

turnbuckles and eye screw might do the same job

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Les Ewan    156

Turnbuckle and Eye screw...sounds a bit like something you sent the new apprentice for in days of yore,like a Long Weight,a Splod or a Sky Hook.:icon_biggrin: Forgive me if I google them first to see if they actually exist before asking the assistant at B&Q in case your having a bit of fun with the rookie observatory builder!!:homework:

Anyway what with the rain and returning to work not much has been done with this project until I returned in the late afternoon foregoing my tea I got down to it finishing the main structure after dark.The roof opens and closes remarkably easily considering its weight,so I'm quite pleased.I fitted door hinges salvaged from a old shed,the were welded by rust but some heat from a blow torch and copious amounts of WD 40 got them free(theirs something oddly satisfying about freeing old rusty hinges,pliers ect):happy7:I dont have a bolt for the door or a padlock I'll have to buy them(damn)!

I'm wanting a break so Ill wait till next weekend to do the slabbing.

The images were taken after finishing the work so it was dark but shows the roof closed then open and the main occupant a 8"f 5 EQ Newtonian inside ready for clear skies.

FORC2.JPG

FORO1.JPG

FOT.JPG

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Les Ewan    156

HI Toothdr,

Are either of  your wooden observatories painted? White would be the obvious choice,I would prefer a wood preserve keeping the wood effect but the planks are all different shades at the moment,Id like to go for a dark colour but that would gather heat during the day and radiate  it at night potentially ruining the seeing.

Les

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tooth_dr    481
18 hours ago, Les Ewan said:

HI Toothdr,

Are either of  your wooden observatories painted? White would be the obvious choice,I would prefer a wood preserve keeping the wood effect but the planks are all different shades at the moment,Id like to go for a dark colour but that would gather heat during the day and radiate  it at night potentially ruining the seeing.

Les

 

I've only one shed/obs, but this is my second build.  I built it from scracth.  Here is a pic, I hope you dont mine me posting it in your thread.  Its' done with rustic brown cuprinol.  I've not noticed any heat issues, I dont know if the wood would hold heat well?  The roof isnt felted in this photo but it is now.

The only thing I can see if that my roof overhangs the walls, whereas your roof seems to sit further in.  I'd be worried about rain running down inside the walls. Apologies it you have already thought of this but just mentioning it in passing I hope it does not cause you any offence.

 

Best wishes

Adam.

 

 

 

 

Obs.jpg

Edited by tooth_dr
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Les Ewan    156

HI Adam,

That's a lovely shed/Obs well done it puts my wooden cube to shame.I've had a couple of really wet days and the only dry wall is on the overhang on the slider side with water dribbling down the inside on the other three walls,its not bad but enough to be annoying.I'm not too worried as decking boards are treated and meant to be exposed to the elements as long as the scopes and mounts are dry that's the main thing.I diden't think about a overhang during the build to be honest although it seems blatantly obvious now.:homework: Then again a overhang would of meant more weight,but at least I have a usable observatory/shelter over the winter. In spring I'll go back to the drawing board and fit marine ply to the roof frame(with a ample overhang).  Don't worry I'm open to criticism as it adds too the discussion and may help others avoid making the same mistakes.

Les

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Astrokev    68

I like your approach Les. There's great satisfaction in using reclaimed materials. Well done!

kev

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Alan White    821
On 9/6/2017 at 22:51, Les Ewan said:

Thanks Kev,

from the Skip Raker!:icon_biggrin:

That almost sounds as good as the scopes: nearly, well a little close to nearly as good then! :wink:

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