My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

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Kerry C.
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My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#1

Post by Kerry C. »

I finally finished my permanent pier and brake rotor pier mount. I have the electrical buried underground and up the pier... no more extension cords! (Still need to put the outdoor outlet cover on)
I decided to do pavers around the pier because I had some laying around not being used.
I think the brake rotor pier mount turned out pretty good. I am patiently waiting for some clear skies to get back to imaging.
Anyway I thought I’d share some photos here.
Come on clear skies!
Kerry
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Scopes; TS Optics APO 102mm f/7refractor, Cestron Nexstar 8SE, Gskyer 80mm x 400mm refractor
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#2

Post by Lady Fraktor »

What a great idea Kerry!
I hope you get a lot of use from it. :)

The only thing I will suggest is try it in that position then try it lower down on the spreader bolts.
Long steel bolts under tension like to act like tuning forks.
Telescopes: 1 more than I need but 2 less than I want
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#3

Post by mikemarotta »

Kerry C. wrote: Fri May 21, 2021 1:57 am I finally finished my permanent pier and brake rotor pier mount. I have the electrical buried underground and up the pier..
Nice bit of work. You should get a lot from it.
You have cameras. Do you have any photos?

(Your neighbors seem close. )

Best Regards,
Mike M.
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#4

Post by Ylem »

Very nice Kerry!
Clear Skies,
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#5

Post by Kerry C. »

Lady Fraktor wrote: Fri May 21, 2021 4:51 am What a great idea Kerry!
I hope you get a lot of use from it. :)

The only thing I will suggest is try it in that position then try it lower down on the spreader bolts.
Long steel bolts under tension like to act like tuning forks.
Yes I plan on decreasing that space. I just have it that way while I get things set up.
When all is said and done I’ll just have enough room to have access to the mount bolt for tightening.
Thanks for looking out for me.

Scopes; TS Optics APO 102mm f/7refractor, Cestron Nexstar 8SE, Gskyer 80mm x 400mm refractor
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#6

Post by Kerry C. »

mikemarotta wrote: Fri May 21, 2021 11:53 pm
Kerry C. wrote: Fri May 21, 2021 1:57 am I finally finished my permanent pier and brake rotor pier mount. I have the electrical buried underground and up the pier..
Nice bit of work. You should get a lot from it.
You have cameras. Do you have any photos?

(Your neighbors seem close. )

Best Regards,
Mike M.
Thanks. I hope it serves me well.
Yes I have cameras. I’m not sure what you mean by having any photos, but yes I do have a few.
Kerry

Scopes; TS Optics APO 102mm f/7refractor, Cestron Nexstar 8SE, Gskyer 80mm x 400mm refractor
Mount; Sky-Watcher HEQ5 Pro
Cameras; ZWO ASI294 MC Pro, QHY5iii462C, ZWO ASI224MC, Canon 600D DSLR T3i.
Guide scope; ZWO 60280 f/4.6
Guide camera; ASI290mm mini
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#7

Post by Lady Fraktor »

I am definitely going to keep this in mind for when I can place a permanent pier!
I love re-purposing items like this.
Telescopes: 1 more than I need but 2 less than I want
Mounts: 5 Equatorial, 3 Az/ Alt
Diagonal: 3 mirror, 2 Amici, 1 Herschel
Eyepieces: Possibly more than 1 person requires
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#8

Post by Graeme1858 »

Great project Kerry.

It would be great to see the construction phase photos. Did you cast the pier in concrete?

It's definitely the way to go for me eventually. The time that I will struggle to lift the mount and tripod together will probably coincide with the time that I retire (a few years!) I best start the design phase now.

Did you make the pier mount adapter? Or is that a Skywatcher thing?

Regards

Graeme
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

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Post by yobbo89 »

ahh , futher inspection , now i know what the brake rotor is xd
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#10

Post by Kerry C. »

Graeme1858 wrote: Sat May 22, 2021 7:49 am Great project Kerry.

It would be great to see the construction phase photos. Did you cast the pier in concrete?

It's definitely the way to go for me eventually. The time that I will struggle to lift the mount and tripod together will probably coincide with the time that I retire (a few years!) I best start the design phase now.

Did you make the pier mount adapter? Or is that a Skywatcher thing?

Regards

Graeme
Thanks Graeme,
I have photos of most of the construction, I’ll post those photos hear.
So yes, the pier itself is concrete reinforced with rebar, it is 8” in diameter and goes 3’ in the ground, the top of the cement is 37” above ground. I used 6 bags of 60# concrete mix, they cost $3.25 per bag. I had to use 2 concrete tubes joined together then cut to the length I needed for my pier, $10 each. The rebar was about $6.

The pier mount is made from 2 brake rotors. This is not my idea, copied it from a thread on Cloudy Nights. I ordered my rotors off of Amazon, they were $15.00 each. The HEQ5PRO and AVX mounts as well as a few others have a 60mm center mount hub. The rotors I ordered match up perfectly with this. What rotors you use would depend on your mount. I used a piece of scrap aluminum for the cross brace that the center mount bolt attaches to the scope mount.
A few nuts and bolts, 1 can of rattle can paint, a drill, and a couple of taps for your preferred bolt size.
Anyway, if you have other questions I’ll try to answer as best as I can. Here are some construction build photos. Sorry for the random order.
Kerry
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#11

Post by Thefatkitty »

That's ingenious Kerry! What a great use for a pair of rotors.

Nice bit of work for sure! :D

All the best,
Mark
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#12

Post by Gordon »

That's a great 'repurpose' of the brake rotors!

When I built my last pier I used a piece of scrap aluminum (3/8" thick) that I picked up from the scrap yard for $5.00. Sure beats the expensive 'store bought" ones!!!
Gordon
Scopes: Explore Scientific ED80CF, Skywatcher 254N, Orion ST80, Orion Atlas EQ-g mount, Orion SSAG guider. Baader MPCC MkIII coma corrector, Vixen 70mm refractor. Lunt LS35THa solar scope. Skywatcher EQ5pro mount. Imagers: ZWO ASI1600 MM Cool, ZWO ASI533mc-Pro, ZWO ASI174mm-C (for use with my Quark chromosphere), ZWO ASI120MC Filters: LRGB, Ha 7nm, O-III 7nm, S-II 7nm Eyepieces: a few, Primary software: Cartes du Ciel, EQMOD, SGP, Nebulosity, Photoshop, StarTools V1.4
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#13

Post by Kerry C. »

Gordon wrote: Sat May 22, 2021 4:55 pm That's a great 'repurpose' of the brake rotors!

When I built my last pier I used a piece of scrap aluminum (3/8" thick) that I picked up from the scrap yard for $5.00. Sure beats the expensive 'store bought" ones!!!
Thanks Gordon. If/when I upgrade my mount I’ll keep the bottom rotor and manufacture the upper portion out of aluminum to fit whatever mount I get. Now that I know what I am doing it should be pretty straightforward.
Kerry

Scopes; TS Optics APO 102mm f/7refractor, Cestron Nexstar 8SE, Gskyer 80mm x 400mm refractor
Mount; Sky-Watcher HEQ5 Pro
Cameras; ZWO ASI294 MC Pro, QHY5iii462C, ZWO ASI224MC, Canon 600D DSLR T3i.
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#14

Post by OzEclipse »

Hi Kerry,

Very very clever. Most of the machining and holes that you would need to do to a solid piece are already done here. And because you are repurposing a common mass produced part, you aren't paying the astronomy tax.

I have been known to look in the discard bin of engineering shops and have found bits and pieces that only needed minor re-machining to re-purpose.
When I was 19, I saw a truck brake drum in the waste bin of my university mechanical engineering dept. The flange was bolted down and the drum slid exactly inside my steel pier almost like it was machined to fit.

The only thing I had to do was to drill and tap some holes in the pier to lock the pier to the drum.

This really should go in the ATM or Home Observatory section.

Thanks for your post.

Joe
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#15

Post by Kerry C. »

OzEclipse wrote: Tue May 25, 2021 10:10 pm Hi Kerry,

Very very clever. Most of the machining and holes that you would need to do to a solid piece are already done here. And because you are repurposing a common mass produced part, you aren't paying the astronomy tax.

I have been known to look in the discard bin of engineering shops and have found bits and pieces that only needed minor re-machining to re-purpose.
When I was 19, I saw a truck brake drum in the waste bin of my university mechanical engineering dept. The flange was bolted down and the drum slid exactly inside my steel pier almost like it was machined to fit.

The only thing I had to do was to drill and tap some holes in the pier to lock the pier to the drum.

This really should go in the ATM or Home Observatory section.

Thanks for your post.

Joe
Thanks Joe,
Like I said it wasn’t my idea but I did a few of my own mods to suit my needs.
I have had a chance to use it and I am very very pleased with the outcome.
My guiding has improved a lot which I give credit to the permanent pier.
I didn’t know for sure where to put this thread. If it needs to be moved perhaps a moderator could do that.
Kerry

Scopes; TS Optics APO 102mm f/7refractor, Cestron Nexstar 8SE, Gskyer 80mm x 400mm refractor
Mount; Sky-Watcher HEQ5 Pro
Cameras; ZWO ASI294 MC Pro, QHY5iii462C, ZWO ASI224MC, Canon 600D DSLR T3i.
Guide scope; ZWO 60280 f/4.6
Guide camera; ASI290mm mini
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#16

Post by Gordon »

Hi Kerry,

I went ahead and moved this to the "Home Observatories" subforum.
Gordon
Scopes: Explore Scientific ED80CF, Skywatcher 254N, Orion ST80, Orion Atlas EQ-g mount, Orion SSAG guider. Baader MPCC MkIII coma corrector, Vixen 70mm refractor. Lunt LS35THa solar scope. Skywatcher EQ5pro mount. Imagers: ZWO ASI1600 MM Cool, ZWO ASI533mc-Pro, ZWO ASI174mm-C (for use with my Quark chromosphere), ZWO ASI120MC Filters: LRGB, Ha 7nm, O-III 7nm, S-II 7nm Eyepieces: a few, Primary software: Cartes du Ciel, EQMOD, SGP, Nebulosity, Photoshop, StarTools V1.4
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Re: My permanent pier with my brake rotor pier mount

#17

Post by Gulf Coast Guy »

Nicely done.
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