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JamesF

JamesF's observatory build

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16 minutes ago, Astrokev said:

Crikey, I'm worn out just reading your list, let alone actually doing the work. Do you ever stop?!

Mostly not :)  If I stop then I have time to think, and there's no end of trouble when that starts happening.

I have just remembered that I need to attack a pile of wood with the chainsaw so it can be used on the log-burners, but I think that can wait until next weekend.

James

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I was going to motorise my roof but I too concluded that it'd be quicker to open it by hand.

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3 minutes ago, Gina said:

I was going to motorise my roof but I too concluded that it'd be quicker to open it by hand.

Ah, well, yes, but once it was motorised it could be automated so it could be opened from the house, or using a phone or computer, so it would be open by the time I got there.  Of course there is absolutely no need for it, but that's not the point, is it? :D

James

Edited by JamesF
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13 minutes ago, JamesF said:

I have just remembered that I need to attack a pile of wood with the chainsaw so it can be used on the log-burners, but I think that can wait until next weekend.

James

Mind you don't get too carried away with all that cladding lying around ?

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9 minutes ago, JamesF said:

Of course there is absolutely no need for it, but that's not the point, is it? :D

James

Absolutely not. I can, so I will ..... ?

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Well, playtime doesn't seem to last very long at this time of year :(

Kenwood (hopefully) fixed, though turning down small diameter nylon rod on the lathe was a pain and I had to have more than one attempt to get anything usable.  Eight pheasants plucked, butchered and chilling in the fridge.  Well, I say chilling.  They look positively catatonic to me :)  I am seriously thinking about adding "build a mechanical plucking machine" to my list of future projects now.

And then I finally got out to do a bit on the observatory.  There were only about three hours of daylight left, so I got on with the remaining side of the roof.  Cutting the ply, fixing it, covering with membrane and fixing the EPDM back down so it won't blow about in the wind took me right down to the wire and by the time I'd tidied tools away it was dark.  I'm quite pleased I got that done though as we're forecast quite a bit more rain overnight and only a few hours break over lunchtime tomorrow.  I'll try to get out there again if it's dry enough, but I'm not entirely hopeful.  I might get to take some photos, at least.

James

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23 hours ago, Gina said:

I was going to motorise my roof but I too concluded that it'd be quicker to open it by hand.

And more reliable!   ?

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Absolutely.  Electrical failure was one of my concerns.

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But if it was electrical failure, then wouldn't you imaging also be ruined …. or in the case of total power outage, a full failsafe & lock (spring\weight return ? etc.) would take care of that, unless the roof doesn't clear the OTA...

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I have a backup battery in my observatory so power cuts are not a problem...

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Not much chance of getting outside and doing anything useful this morning, but I did manage a brief foray to take some photos.  The state of the prevailing weather is evident from the second photo against the background of the inside of the roof :(

obsy-build-52.jpg

obsy-build-53.jpg

obsy-build-54.jpg

James

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WOW!!  That is quite some construction there James - looks fantastic ? :hello2: :thumbsup:

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A nice looking build. For scale, how tall is the door opening on the west wall?

I can't see well enough from the pictures if you have gussets at the top of the vertical portion of the rolling roof where it meets the pitched supports. I would be a bit concerned about parallel shifting under wind or snow loads without some type of bracing in the east-west direction. Of course, this may be addressed when you close in the south gable.

Is snow load a concern in Somerset? It wasn't for the three observatories I built in the Phoenix area, but certainly is in northern Arizona.

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46 minutes ago, MCinAZ said:

Is snow load a concern in Somerset?

This news picture is titled "Heavy Snow affected the M5 in Somerset".  James may need to plan for several inches of the white stuff, as you can see we don't get a lot of snow in the UK but it is far, far more powerful than normal snow...

snow11.jpg

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Quite :)

Snow (that doesn't actually melt immediately it hits the ground) is about a once-in-ten-years event in this part of the UK, and even then it's rarely very much even if it does bring the entire place to a standstill.  The observatory is relatively well-protected from the wind other than from the northern end where the roof has the smallest effective profile because it sits in the lee of the house. There is bracing across the gable above the warm room as well as across the centre of each of the "rafter" pairs, all welded in, and my intention is to increase that at both ends when I add the gables.  Then I'll see how it behaves and decide whether I want to add any more internally (possibly I might add some additional diagonal bracing).  I have tested that the roof frame will carry my weight on the ridge -- about 114kg (or around 250lbs to save you converting if it you needed to, Mike :)

The door opening is a shade under 5' high -- perhaps 4'11".  The additional height of the roof means I should be able to close it without needing to park telescopes first which may be useful given my planned Evostar 102 solar Ha mod.

James

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This is looking fantastic James. The first picture makes it look more like a cathedral than an observatory ? .

I notice you have a window waiting patiently for installation. That's something I still need to source. With hindsight I should've bought the window before putting the studding up, but hey ho.

Wishing you dry weather for the next week.

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Thank you.

Yes, I have a window sorted :)  We had all the windows in the house replaced quite a few years back with modern double-glazed units and I kept all of the glazing units from the old ones.  They've slowly been used up in other projects since, like the treehouse I built for the children:

treehouse3.jpg

James

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I didn't see the need for a window personally, thieves like to nosey in through them plus unless it's double glazed it's the easiest point of a break in.

Also when I asked my insurance company about cover they said having a window would raise the price. ?

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Not sure about James', but my window will go between the warm and scope room so I can keep an eye on the scope while keeping warm. A window on an outside wall is obviously risky. 

Having said that, isn't your door glazed Lee?

Edited by Astrokev

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1 minute ago, Astrokev said:

Not sure about James', but my window will go between the warm and scope room so I can keep an eye on the scope while keeping warm.

Ah yes I probably looked at that wrong ? but agree one on the external is pointless really.

I don't have the option of a window between rooms as I only have a hobbits door in height ? 

The envy of the ROF lol would of been nice seeing the scope too now that I have it totally pc controlled.

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51 minutes ago, Stub Mandrel said:

That's not a tree house, it's a theme park!

Sadly I couldn't find anywhere level enough to put the teacups ride.  You can't have a theme park without a teacup ride.

James

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57 minutes ago, LeeRich said:

Ah yes I probably looked at that wrong ? but agree one on the external is pointless really.

Yes, the window is just to give a view of the telescopes from the warm room, though it is actually a double-glazed panel.  I could probably put an outside window in the warm room to allow some natural light in.  Because of the fall of the ground it could actually be above head height outside.  But I agree there seems little point.

Security here is perhaps a little different anyhow.  Burglaries certainly do happen, but most often the thieves are after the likes of quad bikes or chainsaws and so on, or just money, and it's balanced by the knowledge that flashing a torch around in the pitch black is likely to draw attention, plenty of people have dogs that may be aggressive towards strangers and allowed to run relatively freely and quite a few people have a collection of firearms and might not take kindly towards someone attempting to deprive them of the tools of their trade.  On the other hand I know that on the rare occasions when there is no-one here, if someone is determined specifically to get in to my property they certainly will get in, because there's no-one else near enough to notice even if they reversed a car through a window.

James

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Scary really isnt it, since i finished my obsy the house opposite (a new build) was broke into twice in 2 nights but on the second night they left prints and blood so one day

soon they will trip up and get caught. Since this happened however it got me thinking about my own security so just today i had a company come round to price up CCTV, its amazing

now because once a camera is activated it tells my phone so will wake me up, the unit records 24/7/365 but it was the phone app that won me over ??

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