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Observing chair


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Hi all.

I want to get a chair for observing, the ones in the shops are too expensive , I thought about making one but my wood working skills would let me down.

I came across this , would it be stable enough when at full height,  extends to 32".

Dave

Screenshot_20220907-192353_Google.thumb.jpg.ebca1d05913501f1b39c38902c06a996.jpg

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3 minutes ago, Dave scutt said:

Hi all.

I want to get a chair for observing, the ones in the shops are too expensive , I thought about making one but my wood working skills would let me down.

I came across this , would it be stable enough when at full height,  extends to 32".

Dave

Screenshot_20220907-192353_Google.thumb.jpg.ebca1d05913501f1b39c38902c06a996.jpg

$339.oo 🤣   Stop by your local charity shop's and look for an Ironing Board Chair, I picked one up for £5.oo and its adjustable in height and good for observing.

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14 hours ago, markse68 said:

Looks more of a perch than a seat- you’d need to keep feet on ground or rig up a footrest?

Your use of the word "perch" is relevant in terms of safety. I use an all wood observing chair by Geoptik and take the view to regard it as a perch rather than a chair.

The chair is very useful and makes my time at the eyepiece more comfortable and rewarding but I'm very aware of the inherent lateral instability and not to pitch myself backwards if I fail to ensure that the rear leg is positioned correctly when moving the chair to a new position.

Edited by LaurenceT
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4 hours ago, Dave scutt said:

I was looking at those are they very stable at full height 

Very stable, Dave. Being tall I find the high back useful too. The only gripe, if that's the word, is that to adjust the height you need to unscrew a threaded bolt, lift the seat post to the correct height then screw the bolt back in. Doesn't take long but lining the holes up in darkness can take a minute or 2. Max. design weight is 200kg.

Andy 

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21 hours ago, Dave scutt said:

Hi all.

I want to get a chair for observing, the ones in the shops are too expensive , I thought about making one but my wood working skills would let me down.

I came across this , would it be stable enough when at full height,  extends to 32".

Dave

Screenshot_20220907-192353_Google.thumb.jpg.ebca1d05913501f1b39c38902c06a996.jpg

As others have stated, and, IMO as well, way overpriced - and not sturdy enough for observing with a 12" Dob.

I'm very pleased, after ten years of intensive use, with my "Füssener Astrostuhl"; here my short review from 2017:

Not cheap at all (at the  moment 238€ for the Magnum version); but might be the ultimate solution, even for observing with bigger dobs:

DSC_0587.thumb.JPG.bc74c2bb88e2f592c1d5f093cb8377df.JPG

The "Füssener Astro-Stuhl", developed 2005 by the Füssener Stargazer's group( with a lot of experience and knowledge of a stargazer's needs).

Very stable (up to 100 kg load), with adjustable seat heights from 31 up to 115 cm. The lower board, usually a footrest,  serves as a step, when I'm observing with the 18", whilst standing, near the zenith. I'm feeling quite comfortable, relaxed and safe, when sitting on the top board at maximal height. You can even stretch it out for observing reclined, with bins, or naked eye for meteor showers.

Got mine as a family gift for my 60. birthday as a "retirement chair", ordered here:

www.intercon-spacetec.de/zubehoer/astronomie-zubehoer/stuehle/3261-fuessener-astro-stuhl-mag

Might also be an interesting DIY project (or carpenter's work).

Stephan

Update: The chair is still available, now priced at 283€ (Magnum version):

https://www.intercon-spacetec.de/zubehoer/astronomie-zubehoer/stuehle/4889-ics-astro-stuhl-magnum-grau-hoehe-115-cm-beobachterstuhl.html

(website in German only). Very reliable retailer; runs the production of proprietary  quality scopes.

One of my most appreciated gifts ever - just for the price of a mid-class eyepiece, e.g. a Baader Morpheus, but you get a lot of observing comfort and safety. The chair oozes quality, is rock solid, stands well on uneven surfaces; no signs of flaw (materials are mountain ash, birch plywood and stainless steel fittings). You can move it easily (it's well balanced) and even adjust your height of seat, without looking, and with just one hand, in a few seconds! Some nice accessories are available as well. Folds down to 45 mm thickness, so easy to stow away.

I've never understood observers, who spend a lot of money on eyepieces, upgrading mounts etc., and scrimp on a good seat. As Mel Bartels, an extremely experienced observer, reports, you gain up to 0.5 limiting star magnitude, when observing seated - that's a lot! For extended observing sessions (think of the upcoming Mars opposition), vital.

Stephan

 

Edited by Nyctimene
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So I managed to find a cheap used ironing chair but it's a couple of inches to small if I have the scope pointing straight up (which isn't often).

Any ideas , I thought of some 4x2 wood with holes in it for the feet to slide in it or drill 2 holes further up. 

Dave

20220909_182530.thumb.jpg.6b8584e76a00e2f3391452c52ef1d251.jpg20220909_185631.thumb.jpg.65281dae6a510bddb4d22cfa826a8368.jpg

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2 hours ago, Dave scutt said:

After grinding down some metal pipes and some mud feet from an old carp chair.

I've raised it 3.5 ", now it's tall enough and stable. 

20220910_183009.thumb.jpg.dd9e4f9118dc24728b0155895604495e.jpg

Nice, I like your modification for stability. :smiley: 

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On 07/09/2022 at 19:47, L8-Nite said:

$339.oo 🤣   Stop by your local charity shop's and look for an Ironing Board Chair, I picked one up for £5.oo and its adjustable in height and good for observing.

PICT0001 (Medium).JPG

PICT0010 (Medium).JPG

I broke 3 ribs falling off one of those ironing board chairs. They tip over backwards easily if you are observing at the zenith, especially with a dob. 

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On 08/09/2022 at 11:51, Nyctimene said:

As others have stated, and, IMO as well, way overpriced - and not sturdy enough for observing with a 12" Dob.

I'm very pleased, after ten years of intensive use, with my "Füssener Astrostuhl"; here my short review from 2017:

Not cheap at all (at the  moment 238€ for the Magnum version); but might be the ultimate solution, even for observing with bigger dobs:

DSC_0587.thumb.JPG.bc74c2bb88e2f592c1d5f093cb8377df.JPG

The "Füssener Astro-Stuhl", developed 2005 by the Füssener Stargazer's group( with a lot of experience and knowledge of a stargazer's needs).

Very stable (up to 100 kg load), with adjustable seat heights from 31 up to 115 cm. The lower board, usually a footrest,  serves as a step, when I'm observing with the 18", whilst standing, near the zenith. I'm feeling quite comfortable, relaxed and safe, when sitting on the top board at maximal height. You can even stretch it out for observing reclined, with bins, or naked eye for meteor showers.

Got mine as a family gift for my 60. birthday as a "retirement chair", ordered here:

www.intercon-spacetec.de/zubehoer/astronomie-zubehoer/stuehle/3261-fuessener-astro-stuhl-mag

Might also be an interesting DIY project (or carpenter's work).

Stephan

Update: The chair is still available, now priced at 283€ (Magnum version):

https://www.intercon-spacetec.de/zubehoer/astronomie-zubehoer/stuehle/4889-ics-astro-stuhl-magnum-grau-hoehe-115-cm-beobachterstuhl.html

(website in German only). Very reliable retailer; runs the production of proprietary  quality scopes.

One of my most appreciated gifts ever - just for the price of a mid-class eyepiece, e.g. a Baader Morpheus, but you get a lot of observing comfort and safety. The chair oozes quality, is rock solid, stands well on uneven surfaces; no signs of flaw (materials are mountain ash, birch plywood and stainless steel fittings). You can move it easily (it's well balanced) and even adjust your height of seat, without looking, and with just one hand, in a few seconds! Some nice accessories are available as well. Folds down to 45 mm thickness, so easy to stow away.

I've never understood observers, who spend a lot of money on eyepieces, upgrading mounts etc., and scrimp on a good seat. As Mel Bartels, an extremely experienced observer, reports, you gain up to 0.5 limiting star magnitude, when observing seated - that's a lot! For extended observing sessions (think of the upcoming Mars opposition), vital.

Stephan

 

I keep looking at those and it would be so easy to make one of those.  I really should just build one and be done with it

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41 minutes ago, Mike Q said:

I keep looking at those and it would be so easy to make one of those.  I really should just build one and be done with it

Should be doable, but you'll need a good router (plywood thickness 26 mm!), and a table saw. But I guess, with all the quality material and fittings added, it might be not that much cheaper. In case you are a seasoned woodworker, go for it! (I could send you some measurements and details, if needed).

Stephan

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I have all the tools in my garage to make one.  I just have decide if i would use a sheet of marine plywood or just use white oak.  I would be interested to see what they are using for fasteners and hinges.  If you are bored and have nothing else to do you could pm me some pictures.  

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13 hours ago, Carl Au said:

I broke 3 ribs falling off one of those ironing board chairs. They tip over backwards easily if you are observing at the zenith, especially with a dob. 

Small world Carl. I broke several ribs at the end of march falling off of a ladder and landing on the corner of a breeze block, so I understand your pain; its no fun sitting upright in a chair for a month and a half trying to sleep. I'm ok on chairs and stools, but thanks for sharing your experience here with us. 👍

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