Re: Piertech3 Adjustable Pier with AP1600 Experience

Woody Schlom



Regarding moisture coming up from the bottom of an observatory.


Almost all the observatories I’m familiar with are built on concrete slabs – except for mine which is a mobile observatory and is built on top of a flat-bed aluminum trailer.  I’ve seen photos of a couple of observatories that were built on stilts and had wooden floors.


With the observatories built on concrete slabs or my aluminum trailer, the owner then seals the joint between the floor and walls with lots of silicone seal.


And finally, I (and most others) also install some kind of dehumidification system.  The permanent observatories usually use electric dehumidifiers (such as those used in boats).  I use chemical ones in my mobile observatory (Dri-Z-Air in my case).


In addition to moisture, you need to keep out insects and rodents.  Mice can be a terrible problem as they chew on wire insulation – and ruin everything.  I know a guy who owns one of the old white 16” Meade “Research” SCT’s on a Meade Alt/Az mount.  Mice got into his observatory, and then up and into the guts of his mount – and chewed through the wire insulation.  He had to completely disassemble the mount and then install all new wires. 


I don’t know about observatories, but I know ants love to live in RV’s and once again, they eat the insulation off the wires.




From: <> On Behalf Of psparkman via
Sent: Sunday, January 9, 2022 11:34 AM
Subject: [ap-gto] Piertech3 Adjustable Pier with AP1600 Experience


Greetings everyone.  I am the recent lucky owner of an AP1600AE and I want to use it with my Celestron C14 for imaging.  I want to build a "Micro" observatory in my small suburban San Diego back yard.  I have a spot that will work, but need it to be as small as I can get it for my lovely Wife to accept it.  Essentially, I need it to be a 5' cube phone booth with a roll off roof.  I do strictly imaging, so it does not need to accommodate me in there while slewing around.  

With the scope this low, I am worried about extra humidity coming up from the ground, and this is a humid environment as it is.  Also, it would be nice to have the scope up higher to clear the sides of the "observatory" and my neighbors bamboo.  A potential way to solve my problems is to get a Piertech3 heavy duty height adjustable pier.  I could have it park 4 to keep the box as low as possible.  Then open the roof, and raise the pier up for imaging.  This will raise it another 20" and will help with clearance and humidity.

Does anyone have any imaging experience with the Piertech pier at longer focal lengths.  Will it maintain polar alignment well enough to reuse an APCC model?  Any other issues that I should consider with the Piertech?  Another other options or ideas?

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