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Observing chair


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Hi In all the years that I have been observing the night sky some 60 years I have never had an observing seat, I have always stood up.

it must be an age thing but wobbles and back ache mar the nights viewing'A few years ago I did a diy project with my son to make a shelf in his Vw van to maximise storage space and the shelf was constructed from 18 mm marine plywood.

There was half a sheet left over in my garage waiting for a project and the idea of an observing seat was born.

I drew one up and machined it out with the help of my brother who has a workshop.

tonight Jupiter was up this was at approx 7.pm so I set up my skymax 127 and the seat had first light it was magic needs a couple of tweeks but what a difference no wobbles no back ache. the seeing was not to good due to the bright Moon.



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8 hours ago, Kimboman said:

Hi thanks it was not a zero cost it cost me £4.80 for the tee hinges and the timber for the back leg everything else from stock in my workshop

£4.80? Exorbitant. Couldn't justify that sort of expenditure. I will wait until I have enough amazon cardboard boxes to pile up and make a suitable seating arrangement

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9 hours ago, RobertI said:

Nice job! Just like my Nadira observing chair, but zero cost! :) I am also a fairly recent convert to seated observing, and I have to say it makes observing more relaxing and enjoyable.

Same here, much more comfortable 😊

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Regarding the cost, my home made astro chair cost me much more than 4-5 quid, and I don't mind admitting it.

Although I did have 24mm Baltic birch plywood at home, this was bought at some point by me, so it should be taken into account. Its delivery wasn't cheap either.

In my case I also glued some panels with Titebond 3 glue. I had it already, but it should still be taken into account.

Regarding the finishing, as it is plywood, I felt more comfortable to make sure that it was sealed properly, particularly on the areas closed to the ground. I used 1 litre of Smith's CPES. On top of that, I applied 3 coats of Ronseal ultra tough polyurethane varnish (matt finish). The bottom edges of the chair (the feet) have 5mm rubber attached, so that the finish on the feet remains in place and the plywood doesn't get water infiltration.

Hinges are stainless steel heavy-duty ones.

So, I'd say that the total cost of fabricating is roughly around £100-120, excluding my work on it. I'm pleased with the result and don't feel ashamed of admitting the cost figure.

Here are some photos:






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On 23/10/2021 at 10:07, bish789 said:


That is an excellent chair.

Might have a go at making one over the winter.

Thank you. 

Yes, it's a nice experience and is not particularly difficult either if you have some basic tools. I literally had zero experience (=none, not even used a drill..) before making the telescope and chair above. Of course they could have been made better and more efficiently, but my point is that these projects are feasible with adequate patience, study, measurements, and attention to detail.

Honestly, I encourage everyone to give it a go. To me these have been very rewarding experiences. 😀

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Great chair Kimboman. Can I just ask how the adjustable seat attaches. Is it just slotted through or does it hook over somehow or have a pin inserted? Also, does it have any sort of bracket on the underside of the seat or does the ply provide enough strength? ( I'm thinking of my weight!) Any help/ advice much appreciated. 



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