A suburban observatory in Worcestershire, UK based on a metal garden shed

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  Construction 15 - Mounting the Telescopes


The telescopes mounted in the observatory are a recently acquired 200 mm (8 inch ) Meade f10 LX200 classic with an Orion 80ED f7.5 apochromatic refractor  piggy-backed on it.  These are mounted on a Meade Standard Equatorial wedge.  A counter balance system adapted from the Astroengineering model AC304 was put together by Chris Livingstone.  Chris also made the superb adjustable pier adaptor plate from two pieces of 19 mm (¾ inch) thick aluminium plate and the aluminium dew shield for the LX200.  Dew heaters are fitted to both telescopes and the finderscope, and are controlled by  a Kendrick Digifire 7 dew heater controller. 

The alignment of the LX200 is achieved by several mechanisms.  The pitch and yaw of the wedge is achieved by adjusting the four outer M12 bolts between the pier adaptor plates.  These bolts are held in place using locking nuts to ensure that, once levelled, the alignment does not slip.   The rotation of the wedge can be adjusted by loosening the four bolts connecting the wedge to the top adaptor plate and the angle of the telescope is adjusted by tilting the mounting plate on the wedge.


The Orion 80 ED is mounted on to the LX200 using a pair of Astroengineering asymmetric mounting rings (item # AC503).  These were used so that the Orion 80ED is mounted a close as possible to the LX200, hence allowing the whole assembly to be mounted as high as possible whilst still allowing the roll off roof to open.  To aid this clearance, the top mounting screw on each ring was replaced with a short bolt of the requisite thread.

The keypad for the LX200 has a holder made of scrap bits of MDF and architectural moulding mounted on a bent metal bracket.


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Last updated -  9th January 2007

Copyright© 2006-2007 Michael Morris