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Yawning Angel

50/50 Roll off build

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Looking excellent Alex. Shelving looks very professional - is this in the warm or scope room?

I haven't given too much thought to shelving for equipment, other than recognising that I probably need some. Once I've got the electrics in, I'll see how best to use the space I think.

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Thank Kev!

18 minutes ago, Astrokev said:

is this in the warm or scope room

This is in the warm room. I'm thinking of maybe putting in a storage bench / seat in the scope side if I need more - but as it's mainly for imaging, I don't think I'll need it

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Good progress.  Should be great once the electrics start going in.

James

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Network!

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A step closer, the wiring in of the CAT6 SWA network cable. It seems a long time since I was laying this underground, but now : 1Gbps connection straight to the broadband hub!

So this is the official 'first post' from the observatory itself!

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Woohoo! :D

James

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Posted (edited)

I was intending to change hats after my networking success, and continue sanding and treating shelving, but I really didn’t want to get changed into scruffs!

Thus I did more techie work, and started the mission control board

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12V power distribution block, PC, Dew controller(usb controlled) and PC power brick, 1st draft layout. To this I need to add a USB hub on the right. Inputs will come in the bottom, scope connections out of the top. The whole board is going into this :

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This construct is going to be floor mounted, next to the pier. I toyed with getting a metal enclosure, but I wanted a clear door. The ‘locks’ can be swapped to proper keyed ones, but as it’s plastic I’m not sure if it’s worth it 

Edited by Yawning Angel
Images reduced to a more manageable size
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Posted (edited)

In goes the desk (first fit) along with the trunking, mains sockets and network cabling in the warm room

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Edited by Yawning Angel

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Looks like a decent space.  You might have to buy some more kit to fill it up :)

James

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I've been meaning to ask for ages Alex, and keep forgetting...  Have I correctly understood that you've taped the rubber tiles down in the scope room?

James

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Do you think it will help control the expansion of the tiles when they get warm?  I did wonder if sticking them down might.

James

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I doubt it!

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They’ve been up to 40degree in direct sun. Even without sticking them, they didn’t seem appreciable effected. I’m just thinking of them not lifting and becoming an unseen trip hazard ?

That said, the grab on that tape is quite aggressive, as I found when I tried to lift a carpet tile I’d laid wrong! It can only help

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On 08/05/2019 at 00:47, JamesF said:

You might have to buy some more kit to fill it up :)

The universal law will surely apply -  "Stuff expands to fill the available space" ?

A little more detail: The trunking is 100mm x 50mm with 3 segregated channels inside - top to bottom I'm running Mains, 12V and network. I'm thinking to punch through the wall into the scope room, and extent the trunking a meter with a couple of sockets 'just in case'. They have a great selection at TLC Electrical Supplies

As I was installing the electrics during the day, I planned on rolling the roof off for daylight, while the power was off. Calamity, the roof wouldn't budge! It seems that my tight tolerances between the wooden roof beams and the V rail had been gobbled up by the natural movement and settling of the wood ? 

All was not lost, however - as the roof isn't inherently captive, I was easily able to jack it up, add some spacers under the wheel bolts then drop it down. It now glides effortlessly again, panic over!

Since I was working on the roof, I also installed a drag strap to the inside frame, to save me reaching up to open and close it. Something I'd had sitting in the bits pile since spotting it on eBay in about November!

 

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On 08/05/2019 at 22:49, Yawning Angel said:

They’ve been up to 40degree in direct sun. Even without sticking them, they didn’t seem appreciable effected. I’m just thinking of them not lifting and becoming an unseen trip hazard ?

That said, the grab on that tape is quite aggressive, as I found when I tried to lift a carpet tile I’d laid wrong! It can only help

For what it’s worth, my rubber tiles are not stuck down, and they lay perfectly flat with no edges riding up to create trip hazards. 

I’ve not experienced thermal expansion of the tiles so cannot comment on this from experience but, if they do expand as many claim, it strikes me that sticking tiles down may inhibit tile movement to accommodate the expansion, which may cause the edges to buckle up slightly. This may actually exacerbate the risk/ problem. 

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I use the rubber interlocked tiles in the observatory here in Oz. 

They can get pretty warm in summer and they do expand!!!

Mine are not glued and I have a 10-15mm gap at the walls.

 

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Thanks @Merlin66@Astrokev, that seems like sound advice and it saves me a job 🙂

It may make a difference that my tiles are spongy foam rubber, rather than solid - but it's easier to tape them if it need, rather than remove it if it's a problem

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I use the foam gym mat type.....

 

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A little more work this weekend, when not enjoying the sunshine:

The desk needed finished, so I took it out, trimmed one edge where it was a little tight and drilled 2 60mm holes for cable access. Then sanded the whole thing (it's 28mm furniture board) and applied beeswax with 0000 grade wire wool. Buffed that after it dried and gave it a second coat with a cloth. Polished that up, job done! I've some table grommets ready to drop in to make it look all posh 🙂 

The electrickery continued too, I ran the 12V cable out to the pier, which was the first try of the underfloor duct - the draw rope I left in worked, which had been a worry since it was quite thick nylon rope left over from holding the roof tarp on. It did also mean I needed to cut holes in the carpet tile over the duct. The cable is 25 amp rated, 2mm², and will be fed from a Nevada PSW-30 hiding in the warm room. 

On a cabling roll, I fed a second twin and earth through the trunking back to the box for the spur feeding the pier's 240V, but I've not tried getting that down the duct yet...I imagine it's going to take some effort

I then moved to networking, and terminated the incoming SWA into patch panel, along with the first 2 network sockets, fed that into it's round place in the comms cabinet, connected it all up and tested - it works! Quite pleased with how well the cabinet fits under the desk too, snug like it was made for it!

With that working, I connected up the wireless access point and a spare PTZ webcam, connected the LED controller to the WiFi, set up a smart plug on the inspection light's socket and plumbed it all into Amazon Alexa. Resulting in "Alexa, turn on the observatory lights". This makes the IT geek in me smile :icon_geek:

Desk's-eye view - no, it's not in the final position, just a test 🙂 There'd be more pictures, but for 2 things. 1) Wires wires and more wires isn't very photogenic and 2) I forgot...which is the real reason

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There is still loads to do, but things are getting ticked off the list. The mountain of bits and pieces I've been tripping over in the house for months is starting to dwindle as they get installed

 

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Sounds like very good progress.  You can't be too far from the end now.

James

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3 minutes ago, JamesF said:

......You can't be too far from the end now.

Is there a collective noun for Observatories.... ???    🤩

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49 minutes ago, Craney said:

Is there a collective noun for Observatories.... ???    🤩

There really ought to be :)

James

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On 09/05/2019 at 09:41, Yawning Angel said:

a drag strap

As @JamesF found, searching eBay for 'Drag strap' is a eye opener! Just to clarify, it's a DOOR-PULL-STRAP like you'd get in a stripped out car for closing the doors. 

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