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Recycled mini observatory

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Evening All!

I've always really enjoyed reading other people's obsy builds so I thought i'd post some photos of my modest mini obsy that is currently under construction, hopefully will be of interest.

Earlier this year, we took down the treehouse in our garden which has been there for 8 years (ish) and not not being used by the children anymore. 

It's not a great photo of it, but you can see it through the trampoline netting (just).

So ended up with a good sized stack of 2x4, 2x2, 2x3, decking planks and a fair quantity of 6" cedar cladding.  Most of it quite wonky and some of it a bit shabby!!

Inspired by a few others on this forum:

Domain105 https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/379823-new-sliding-roof-mini-garden-observatory-build/

Skipper Billy https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/419808-converting-my-clamshell-obsy-roof-to-slide-off/

and Turbocoo https://stargazerslounge.com/topic/378345-metal-shed-sliding-roof-observatory/

- the common thread here is the use of heavy duty drawer sliders.

Along with this inspiration is the fact that my astrophotography rig is getting quite heavy to move in and out of the house.

The idea is to build a mini-obsy as I won't get away with building a big one with a warm room/mini bar etc. 

Just big enough to hold an NEQ6 with an edge8 on it. I'll clad it with the cedar cladding and hopefully it will look like a large beehive 🙂



Edited by AndrewRrrrrr
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this is what will going in there, not going to build a pier as a requirement is that it can be dismantled when we (eventually) downsize at some point in the future. 

I find guiding results are great with the tripod sitting on the hardstanding and since it will be a remote astrophotography obsy, won't need the extra room a pier will offer.


not got much of a plan other than roughly a cube, uses sliders and uses as much of the recyled tree house as possible. going to make it up as I go along......


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I set the scope up and slewed it around to try and work out the bare minimum size I could get away with. Seemed I would get away with 1.2m x 1.2m and 1.5m high.

One of the reasons to make it as small as possible is that the smaller sliders are cheaper!

So ordered up some 1200mm sliders from Amazon (https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08TBFLWX7?ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details&th=1) for £145 and built the basic cube. Left the sliders in the box they arrived in case they had to go back.......




Then tried a test fit.......was looking a bit tight!



unfortunately when i'd done the test slewing to determine the size needed, I hadn't had the dew shield on and the cube wasn't big enough, oops. 


No matter, bit of rejigging to make the cube 1.4m x 1.4m with same height and all was well.

The very convenient returns system on Amazon meant a courier picked up the 1200mm rails the next day and some 1400mm ones were winging their way.


Getting the frame square and level was a real pain, what with the wonky timber and wonky crazy paving to sit it on, but got there in the end. 


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  • 2 weeks later...

Out of interest, why did you bother with the Tyvek ?

Also, did you consider reducing the height of the front wall to get better horizon access, resulting in a sloping roof ? 


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8 hours ago, skybadger said:

Out of interest, why did you bother with the Tyvek ?

Also, did you consider reducing the height of the front wall to get better horizon access, resulting in a sloping roof ? 


hi skybadger,

The cladding has quite a lot of holes and splits in it plus my joinery isn't the best, so wanted a bit more insurance to stop water getting in.  It wasn't a lot of money either so thought why not?

You're probably right that I could have improved my horizons but generally try and image stuff that's not too near the horizon anyway. 

It's all screwed together so never say never that it won't get reconfigured in the future if that's what's needed!


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Finished now. (the spuds have gone bonkers!) Will give it a coat of clear wood preserver at some point. 

Definitely appreciating not carting it all out and back in every time an imaging opportunity comes along.  Along with reducing the risk of dropping it, it's pretty heavy!



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It looks great and has helped drive some thinking for my travel rig obbo.

I'll be aiming for a peaked apex roof  which rolls off the back. The peak allows the sides to be lower for horizon to horizon scanning and the front to be lower for south viewing while the north remains high, otherwise all the sides need to be higher than the scope flat on the mount.

The reason I mentioned the  liner was that on my old obbo I didn't bother and use of pitch lap board meant it didn't matter..

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