13 September 2003
Completed the construction of the roll-off track and roof.
15 September 2003
Applied wood preservative to untreated surfaces of the roof. Also, finally ordered the telescope from Broadhurst Clarkson & Fuller Aka Telescope House today. I decided to go with a European dealer for Meade since I will have a proper warranty and tech support. I decided to plump for a 12" LX200GPS with UHTC coatings. Delivery should be around the end of the month. Sales informed me that I can order the Smart Mount upgrade after I receive the scope. I also ordered the PC connection cable, Mains power supply and Astro Engineering Flexi Dew Shield from Telescope House to accompany the scope.
22 September 2003
Completed the construction of one of the gables. Also applied wood preservative to it.
24 September 2003
Completed the construction of the remaining gable and applied wood preservative to it. Also started on front soffit.
8 October 2003
Constructed and hung the door of the observatory. Also put up all of the edge trim on each of the 4 corners of the observatory.
11 October 2003
Put up the remaining soffit and facia on the east facing side. Also installed a length of brush along the bottom edge which rolls back on the south and north gables. This helps to ensure no rain gets in due to the sliding roof. Also put a secure catch and lock on the door. My soon to be brother in law Aitken, installed most of the roof on the observatory today. I decided on brown box profile sheeting which matches nicely with the wood sides of the observatory. The side flashing on the eves helps to ensure no wind can get under the roof when it gets windy. We also laid a special form of insulation (a kind of bubble wrap with silver foil on both sides) underneath the sheeting. This will help to avoid any accumulation of condensation on the underside of the sheeting. We ran out of sheeting so still a bit of the roof has to be done to make it fully waterproof.
12 October 2003
Finished some missing shiplap on the door. I also applied the final trim to the inside and outside of the window on the east face. All the new wood used also got a couple of coats of wood preservative. I also used some silicone adhesive to ensure it was completely watertight. Check out those mitres I cut!!.
18 October 2003
Applied a final coat of fence paint to all the exposed wood surfaces. I have been informed by Telescope House that the telescope is being delivered next week!!. I've also ordered a pier plate from www.pierplates.com to give the pier that professional look. Because I am purchasing a Deluxe Milburn Wedge, a special adapter will need to be developed by Dan at PierPlates.com to work with the wedge as he only supports a standard Milburn Wedge at the moment. Hopefully I should take delivery of the wedge and pier plate sometime before Christmas. For the moment, I have ordered a battery from Telescope House to go with the telescope while I am awaiting the wedge and pier plate and the electricity being installed into the observatory.
22 October 2003
The telescope finally arrived today. Boy is it large!!. I set it up for the first time in the front yard tonight to give it a try and everything seems fine bar the micro-focuser which does not seem to work. I can just about set it up on my own, due to the large weight and size. It will be a lot easier when I have it installed into the observatory. Had it outside for a few hours and during that time I managed to observe Mars (including the polar cap & Syrtis Major), Uranus, Neptune, Andromeda Galaxy & M32, Polaris and its binary companion, Ring Nebula, M81 & M82 and the Whirlpool galaxy.
27 October 2003
Sent the micro-focuser in for repair. Also sent in the Meade registration card and eyepiece offer form.
27 October 2003