Dennis Sprinkle | Building a permanent pier for my telescope

Building a permanent pier for my telescope

June 02, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

I have an opportunity to install my telescope into an observatory with some of the nicest skies I have ever got to see. This is something that I have wanted to do for a very ling time. This will allow me to take photos much more often, with much better results, and can be remote controlled from anywhere I have service. This is going to improve my astrophotography images immensely!

Here is the problem, I needed a permanent pier to install into the observatory. I didn't plan well enough and thought there might be one available... I should have asked (my mistake). I could always set up my tripod mount for it, but there is always the risk of it getting bumped into and everything getting out of alignment. Not a good thing if you are 1000 miles away.

Well in my normal procrastinating fashion I rushed off to all the websites I know that sells piers. No one had one in stock. And most were 4-6 weeks lead time. I needed this in less than a week. Did I mention procrastinating? So my only other option was to build something. And while I am pretty handy on making things, this was out of my skill level and did not have the tools available anyway. So luckily I know some very talented fabricators and they were able to help me out and in a very short time frame.

Rough pieces laid out to check fit:

Rough pieces laid out to check fit.

Josh Eustice doing some trim/leveling work to the pipe. The store I got the steel from doesn't do a very straight cut:

Josh Eustice doing some trim/leveling work.

Its all welded together:

All welded together

And here is the completed pier after I painted it with some Rust-Oleum Farm Equipment Enamel (still wet):

Nice and painted!

This should be nice and dry by the time I leave Monday morning. It will have a nice new home in Marathon, TX at the Marathon Sky Park located at the  Marathon Motel and RV Park.   If you ever want to get out and see some amazing dark skies please check this place out. Some friends and I made our first trip out there a year ago and fell in love with it. This is going to be my third trip and definitely won't be my last. They are great about having mini star parties with their telescopes and making viewing the night sky fun.


If you are interested in having one of these piers made for yourself or if you might need anything else fabricated, check these guys out:

Josh Eustice:

Justin Hixson:



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