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WanderingEye

I know.. 😴😴 yet another pier build...

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I thought it was about time I had a permanent pier to use, and had allocated a space in the garden, it’s not a perfect spot, but best I can do really...

I have a steel astro engineering pier, with a set of M16 chemical bolts for fixing.

So after clearing the area I dug the 600mm square hole, but 700mm deep, and ordered a half bulk bag of ballast and five bags of cement, I was mixing  by hand too, well I do have a plaster electric mixing paddle, so was using a 5-1 mix ratios ballast and cement, in a big plastic bucket, it took 20 bucket loads and 2.5 hours of time to fill...happy days.. 😅

Next was the decking around the area, 3M x 2m this will, maybe ( permission being sought ) have some sort of roll of roof structure at some point..so went for 4x2” treated frame with 25mm deck boards to cover, with a membrane under to stop any weeds growth..the frame is supported by concrete slab off cuts sunk into the ground, on a dry mix, and then short stubby feet on the deck to allow getting level..

So as you can see by the pictures,  i have got as far as the timber deck frame...have to lift the frame for membrane to be fed underneath next...so more pics to follow in the coming days, or weeks depending on weather... 😀

 

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Edited by WanderingEye
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Are you going to drill bolts into the pad ??

 

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Nice job, I ended up going for chemical bolts too - so simple.

Nice size deck for a ROR too ;)

 

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1 hour ago, Craney said:

Are you going to drill bolts into the pad ??

 

Yes, got to drill 16mm holes. Then fill with resin and set the special bolts in... 😀👍

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1 hour ago, WanderingEye said:

Yes, got to drill 16mm holes. Then fill with resin and set the special bolts in... 😀👍

If your pier has a bolt pattern you need to stick to I would highly recommend cutting a wooden template, bolting the bolts to it and lowering all the bolts into the resin in one go. Once the resin cured I just unbolted the wood and removed. Kept everything lined up and vertical.

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4 minutes ago, upahill said:

If your pier has a bolt pattern you need to stick to I would highly recommend cutting a wooden template, bolting the bolts to it and lowering all the bolts into the resin in one go. Once the resin cured I just unbolted the wood and removed. Kept everything lined up and vertical.

Why would I need to bolt to a wooden pattern, and put all in at once..? Surely that would be more difficult to force four bolts into resin at the same time, plus you have to clean the excess from around the top, that oozes out, straight away before it sets... 😀

My plan was to put the pier on the concrete slab, Mark the holes, remover the pier, drill each hole, clean out, then fill one at a time with resin, and put the bolts in each hole one after another, leaving 25mm protruding, clean excess resin, then when set, put the pier back over the bolt tips, and add the nuts...and dome nuts...

 

 

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10 minutes ago, WanderingEye said:

Why would I need to bolt to a wooden pattern, and put all in at once..? Surely that would be more difficult to force four bolts into resin at the same time, plus you have to clean the excess from around the top, that oozes out, straight away before it sets... 😀

My plan was to put the pier on the concrete slab, Mark the holes, remover the pier, drill each hole, clean out, then fill one at a time with resin, and put the bolts in each hole one after another, leaving 25mm protruding, clean excess resin, then when set, put the pier back over the bolt tips, and add the nuts...and dome nuts...

 

 

Either way will work, the only reason I went with the pattern was because I was concerned about the bolts tilting slightly before the resin had fully set, too far out and I would have had real issues lifting the pier onto the bolts afterwards. I had already had issues with concrete bolts not expanding so I only had one more shot to get the hole pattern I wanted 😂

The other problem was try as I might when I drilled the concrete the holes ended up oversized. In fairness its not something I have done before and the bit was dull etc, but it meant more diameter and more chance of screwing up the placement.

It would have been much easier if the bolt holes on the pier had been larger but for me 2mm out would have been a PITA to fix later. I was fortunate I guessed at the right fill depth for the resin so didnt have any ooze to deal with. Whichever way you go its going to be a great solid mount 👍

 

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13 minutes ago, upahill said:

Either way will work, the only reason I went with the pattern was because I was concerned about the bolts tilting slightly before the resin had fully set, too far out and I would have had real issues lifting the pier onto the bolts afterwards. I had already had issues with concrete bolts not expanding so I only had one more shot to get the hole pattern I wanted 😂

The other problem was try as I might when I drilled the concrete the holes ended up oversized. In fairness its not something I have done before and the bit was dull etc, but it meant more diameter and more chance of screwing up the placement.

It would have been much easier if the bolt holes on the pier had been larger but for me 2mm out would have been a PITA to fix later. I was fortunate I guessed at the right fill depth for the resin so didnt have any ooze to deal with. Whichever way you go its going to be a great solid mount 👍

 

Ah, yes a voice of experience....that all makes sense now...

I must admit I am hoping that with a 16mm bit I will get a hole Approx 16.5mm as they do always ten to be a it bigger with masonry, so not much room to go offline really, BUT if something goes awry and I have to drill bigger, then your idea is one I will consider... 👍 also I am a bit concerned in how long to leave the concrete before I can drill and not worry it’s still not set enough, it will have been poured three weeks on Saturday...and covered the whole time...it’s dried very nice and flat and smooth...I want to drill before I lay the deck boards too....

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Ok, so all ready to run the electric cable then put down the deck boards...

I decided to fill the 3” trenches under the framework with concrete, to make it even more solid for when I put a ROR obsy on there..

The concrete was drilled today, and resin bolts fitted, went much easier that I thought, with my big SDS drill, started with a 16mm bit and went up to 18mm, which is the recommended size for 16mm studs..took about 5 mins per hole to drill, and then had to make a gadget to fix to hoover to clean out all the debris from the holes..

All the bricks and stones in there, on top of the weed / drainage membrane, were just chucked in to get rid of, as they will be under deck boards..

So will soon be ready to attach the pier, then the fun starts.. 👍😀

 

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Edited by WanderingEye
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All boards down, and electric sockets done..double weatherproof outdoor socket...on fence post at back..

The deck area is going to continue another 3m across garden, over the crazy paving you can see in picture, so have left the last board off till next lot of framework is down, as it will overlap.. 😀😀

 

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Ok, so it’s been a while but pier finally bolted down, and 5” pier extension with owls nest fitted....like rocking horse  £&(*  to find, but got one in the end...and EQ8 Adapter plate with nylon inset to allow very smooth, azimuth adjustment...

 

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4 minutes ago, Nigella Bryant said:

Nice piece of engernearing, well done. I'll be starting on my area in the new year. 

Thanks very much...yes apart from the weeks and weeks of rain, it’s been fun, just waiting for my bespoke cover to come now, so can put the EQ8 on and cover the lot up, got a waterproof breathable cover, with waterproof and bug prof vents near the top, on its way...then my dual rig can just be lifted on and off in one go..until I decide to build a ROR obsy around it all.. 😮😗

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Very nice indeed mate. 

Just curious, which cover did you go for? So you'll be leaving the mount underneath the covers but bring the rest of the kit inside? 

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1 hour ago, souls33k3r said:

Very nice indeed mate. 

Just curious, which cover did you go for? So you'll be leaving the mount underneath the covers but bring the rest of the kit inside? 

Yes, the Mount will stay on the pier...under a bespoke made to measure waterproof breathable cover, with special vents also 30cm from the top, which will be sealed from bug and water ingress, and pull cord around the bottom...

The cover in the picture is an older one just for the pier...

I then have a dual mount bar, which has everything fitted to it, 80mm scope with camera on one side, and  guide scope, mini PC and Pegasus UPB, on the other,  so just one power cable to connect to UPB and one from UPB to mount, and ready to go...it can all then be lifted off in one go, then and stored. So minimal set up time.. Hopefully.. 🤞🤞

Edited by WanderingEye
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Looks awesome! I've just made my concrete pier  block today and it's (hopefully) curing as we speak. I don't have fancy blankets so it's covered to protect from frost but two questions if I may.....

How long did you leave the concrete before you were happy to drill the holes into it?

What cover did you go for to prevent moisture affecting your mount? I've seen a couple of garden furniture covers on Amazon that look like they'll do a good job, breathable and prevent moisture and damp but also protect from the heat....

 

 

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30 minutes ago, Adaaam75 said:

Looks awesome! I've just made my concrete pier  block today and it's (hopefully) curing as we speak. I don't have fancy blankets so it's covered to protect from frost but two questions if I may.....

How long did you leave the concrete before you were happy to drill the holes into it?

What cover did you go for to prevent moisture affecting your mount? I've seen a couple of garden furniture covers on Amazon that look like they'll do a good job, breathable and prevent moisture and damp but also protect from the heat....

 

 

Hello,

I covered the concrete with a cover for 2.5 weeks, so it was hard enough to to drill without cracking, which I was concerned about, as my holes were just 100mm from the edges, it does take a few months to harden fully.

I had to drill 18mm holes, (for 16mm studs)  so drilled with an 8mm first, then went to 18mm, then had to get all the dust out before I could use special epoxy resin, to sink the studs into... I had to use an heavy duty SDS drill...

The cover is being made to measure, UV protected,  breathable and waterproof with air vents too, fitted 30cm from the top, and cost £50 with delivery, so much cheaper than dedicated astro covers...from this company

https://bags4everything.co.uk

Edited by WanderingEye

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1 hour ago, WanderingEye said:

Hello,

I covered the concrete with a cover for 2.5 weeks, so it was hard enough to to drill without cracking

The cover is being made to measure

https://bags4everything.co.uk

Thanks for the tips. I have sunk my threads into the concrete so I'm wondering when it will be safe to undo the bolts to remove the template  and in doing so put pressure on the bent threads within the concrete when turning?

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Just now, Adaaam75 said:

Thanks for the tips. I have sunk my threads into the concrete so I'm wondering when it will be safe to undo the bolts to remove the template  and in doing so put pressure on the bent threads within the concrete when turning?

Ah, ok you have done it that way...cool.., well a week should be more than enough so the bent bars won’t move, I needed a lot more...

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2 minutes ago, WanderingEye said:

Ah, ok you have done it that way...cool.., well a week should be more than enough so the bent bars won’t move, I needed a lot more...

A week it is! The worry of lining up the bolts so the pier is set up facing North seemed a less stressful option to drilling into the base 😬. Thanks again, hopefully my maiden voyage into mixing and laying concrete is a successful one.

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33 minutes ago, Adaaam75 said:

A week it is! The worry of lining up the bolts so the pier is set up facing North seemed a less stressful option to drilling into the base 😬. Thanks again, hopefully my maiden voyage into mixing and laying concrete is a successful one.

I couldn’t do it the same as you or I would have, as I had a mounting kit with my pier, which had 16mm studs, and epoxy resin...

although I guess I could have bought some 16mm threaded bar, but not sure how I would have bent that... 😥😥

I used a 5-1 mix with ballast and cement... which gives a good strong mix, and used a plasterers electric mixing paddle and big plastic bucket, it took 22 bucket loads 

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1 minute ago, WanderingEye said:

I couldn’t do it the same as you or I would have, as I had a mounting kit with my pier, which had 16mm studs, and epoxy resin...

although I guess I could have bought some 16mm threaded bar, but not sure how I would have bent that... 😥😥

I used a 5-1 mix with ballast and cement... which gives a good strong mix, and used a plasterers electric mixing paddle and big plastic bucket, it took 22 bucket loads 

My pier was custom made by a steel fabricators so I had no instructions per se! I used 16m threads, 300mm long and was lucky enough to have a brother in law with a workshop to heat and bend them enough to prevent twisting in the concrete, approx 30 degree bends halfway along. I too mixed by hand today, (my back is a bit sore!) I used a cement/ballast ratio of 4/1 only because it was easier to work out for me with measuring. I also used the fibre packs recommended shock apparently add strength and reduce cracking, it can't hurt right!

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10 hours ago, Adaaam75 said:

My pier was custom made by a steel fabricators so I had no instructions per se! I used 16m threads, 300mm long and was lucky enough to have a brother in law with a workshop to heat and bend them enough to prevent twisting in the concrete, approx 30 degree bends halfway along. I too mixed by hand today, (my back is a bit sore!) I used a cement/ballast ratio of 4/1 only because it was easier to work out for me with measuring. I also used the fibre packs recommended shock apparently add strength and reduce cracking, it can't hurt right!

sounds good... 😀👍
It certainly can’t hurt at all, but not really needed....as not taking any force at all, we just had the drive done in that coloured printed concrete, and that has the fibres in to give added strength, as there will be three cars being driven on an off...

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4 hours ago, WanderingEye said:

sounds good... 😀👍
It certainly can’t hurt at all, but not really needed....as not taking any force at all, we just had the drive done in that coloured printed concrete, and that has the fibres in to give added strength, as there will be three cars being driven on an off...

Yes, I do think sometimes I get too involved in the details and overlook the basic requirements of the job. Ultimately as long as the block holds the weight of the pier plus kit and doesn't move or crack I'll be happy! This is of course to negate the need to have to align etc everytime I use the scope so if I achieve that I'll be happy!

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Ok accessory tray and EQ8 fitted and also the new bespoke waterproof, breathable cover with extra vents on opposite sides which have very fine mesh to stop any unwanted visitors, although if they really wanted to take up residence I’m sure they would get it ☹️

 

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Edited by WanderingEye
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