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pkay
2007-Jul-12, 06:35 AM
I am in the process of building a viewing chair to mount my new (soon to arrive) 20X80 binos!
After a visit to the car wreckers (I just love junk) I purchased a very comfy sedan chair with reclining feature and headrest, a front wheel stub axle complete with bearings and hub, and two 12v windscreen wiper motors with reduction gearboxes all for $30!

The simple design uses 35mm box section steel to weld the stub axle onto a 0.5m square frame, and then attach the chair to the hub. Walla! a rotating chair with adjustable back and head rest.

I haven’t figured out the bino mount yet, will have to wait until I get them however that should be easy….or not.

My question is should I bother with the upgrade that uses the two gearboxes to allow joystick control for elevation & azimuth control, or is that overkill?

Should I put in a controller to link it with my computer:lol:

Or should I take all the bits back to the junkyard & get a tripod?

Regards to all

Pkay

hhEb09'1
2007-Jul-12, 09:30 AM
Photos! we need photos!

aurora
2007-Jul-12, 08:14 PM
Look at how some of the commercial bino holders are put together, you might get some ideas. I'm drawing a blank on the names of the manufacturers, but they used to advertise in the back of Sky and Telescope.

A friend recently got a mirror to use, so the binoculars are used pointing downwards at a mirror.

You mention a tripod, the weakness of a standard camera tripod and pan head for Binos is that you have the tripod legs in the way and you have to really work to look at something high overhead.

Edited to add: check this homemade chair: http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=800

mike alexander
2007-Jul-12, 08:55 PM
Shades of ATM!

Pkay, I'd go for the altaz wiper drive. I love it. Hook it to a nice old comsole shift lever, eh? As for the binoc holder, some sort of counterbalanced pantograph should not be all that hard.

The chair sounds great. If you get tired of the Wonders of the Universe, your comfy nap is waiting.

pkay
2007-Jul-12, 11:18 PM
Thanks for the encouragement and I will push on with the project in earnest.
Will take photos and post them in a few weeks.

I like the idea of a console shift lever for control, maybe an instrument cluster as well showing elevation & azimuth, hey I could even add wheels and use an accelerator pedal and brake and….:):):)

PKay

hhEb09'1
2007-Jul-13, 02:41 PM
And an elevator control! so you can get closer :)

Nick
2007-Jul-13, 08:36 PM
I guess the best 'chair' to get is the one dentists victims lie in... that would suit well here in the UK, as waiting for a clear night is like pulling teeth - painful.

Nick

Trebuchet
2007-Jul-13, 11:31 PM
Cup holder?

hhEb09'1
2007-Jul-15, 05:52 PM
and a dizzle bag

pkay
2007-Aug-03, 10:36 PM
Yes its done!
Image can be found here: http://www.depotdurras.com.au/astrochair.htm
Binos: Celestron 20X80

Advantages: Very comfortable for hours of viewing. Can track fast moving objects (see below). Cheap to make (about $80).
Disadvantages: Heavy, needs wheels. Slight movement of objects (caused by my heart beating).

My first use last night was one I will never forget. After a quick 360 scan I decided to zoom in on the double star Acrux. From my right a meteorite (space junk?) came into view and I was able to use the chair controls to track it south to the horizon. It lasted for maybe 4 - 5 seconds. It had a thin tail extending behind (about a degree long) and it was about twice as bright as the star I was viewing.
Absolutely spectacular!!!!

publiusr
2007-Aug-10, 04:13 PM
Well, I had this nice chair that I bonded with organically. It looked like I grew from it.

Then I landed on this planet with these eggs and crap that infested the place. Everybody else left, so I used my hybrid transmitter-scope to broadcast this warning. They always said I spent too much time on this thing oblivious to everything.

How dare they call me a "space jockey."

Whew, I've got angina out the yin-yang. Must be eating too many peanuts. And "Footfall" isn't the way it happened at all, either.

jami cat
2007-Aug-13, 09:02 AM
Yes its done!
Image can be found here: http://www.depotdurras.com.au/astrochair.htm
Binos: Celestron 20X80

Advantages: Very comfortable for hours of viewing. Can track fast moving objects (see below). Cheap to make (about $80).
Disadvantages: Heavy, needs wheels. Slight movement of objects (caused by my heart beating).

My first use last night was one I will never forget. After a quick 360 scan I decided to zoom in on the double star Acrux. From my right a meteorite (space junk?) came into view and I was able to use the chair controls to track it south to the horizon. It lasted for maybe 4 - 5 seconds. It had a thin tail extending behind (about a degree long) and it was about twice as bright as the star I was viewing.
Absolutely spectacular!!!!
Cool...maybe Isolate the back of the chair with a spring where it touches the mount?