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Setting-Up a Small Observatory: From Concept to Construction (The Patrick Moore Practical Astronomy Series) Paperback – 22 Feb 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 2008 edition (22 Feb. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0387345213
  • ISBN-13: 978-0387345215
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 1.4 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 548,747 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

From the reviews:

"David Arditti’s book is the fourth volume in Patrick Moore’s Practical Astronomy series that spotlights how to construct telescope enclosures. … If you want a quick overview of the pros and cons of erecting your own, as well as a practical guide to the different designs, construction techniques, and building codes and zoning requirements, then this book will prove … handy. … this book will help you get started on the right path." (Edwin Aguirre, Sky and Telescope, Vol. 116 (3), September, 2008)

"David Arditti takes a whole new and practical approach to planning and building a permanent home for your telescopes. … In step-by-step fashion he walks the reader through how his very impressive, yet practical, observatory was set-up. … In short, it’s superbly written, with great anecdotal ‘short stories’ complementing the hard facts and authoritative black and white images where needed. This book is a true ‘must have’ for anyone who is in the process of, or considering, setting up a small observatory." (Nick Howes, Astronomy Now, August, 2008)

"The book addresses all the aspects of this complex problem, even the most technical ones … . A detailed Index is also helping in locating the various subject occurrences. … The book is clearly written for England and the United States. … This makes it a treasure for the interested reader and evidently a highly needed and recommended addition … ." (Jean-Marie Gilles, Physicalia Magazine, Vol. 30 (4), 2008)

"It covers various telescopes and mounts available to the amateur, types of observatory both run-off and domed, and their siting within the owners’ gardens. … A positive bonus of this volume is the author’s writing style that makes for very easy reading, with some complex concepts well conveyed without the use of diagrams – quite a feat in itself. This is a comprehensive overview of all the options and considerations needed for a permanent observatory, and any observer considering building one should consult this book." (Maurice Gavin, Journal of the British Astronomical Association, Vol. 118 (4), 2008)

From the Back Cover

Every amateur astronomer who is considering a purpose-built observatory will find this book absolutely invaluable during both the planning and the construction stages. Drawing on David Arditti’s practical experience and that of many other amateur astronomers, it gives invaluable help in making all the important decisions.

To begin with, Setting up a Small Observatory addresses what you really need from an observatory, whether to build or buy, what designs you should consider, and where you should site it. Uniquely, it also considers the aesthetics of an amateur observatory: how to make it fit in with your home, garden, and yard, even disguising it as a more common garden building if necessary.

There’s also a wealth of practical details for constructing and equipping your small observatory – everything from satisfying local planning laws and building codes through to making sure that your completed observatory is well-equipped, convenient, and comfortable to use.

Whether you are considering a simple low-tech DIY approach to a fixed observatory, or aspiring to a sophisticated domed building, there is something here for you.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book gives an excellent introduction why and how to build or buy an observatory.

It starts with the description and discussion of pros and cons of various types of equipment (mounts, telescopes and imaging).

The basic concepts for amateur observatories are explained and illustrated by many pictures.

Finally a comprehensive section with many real world examples inspires to build an own observatory.
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I bought this book because I was thinking of building my own observatory in my back garden. I found that it provided a number of options that were discussed in sufficient details to be adopted or rejected according to your circumstances. I went on to build my own set-up and the knowledge I found within this book was definately helpful. As such it did what I expected and I would recommend it to anyone carrying out similar projects.
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I find it a pain setting up / dismantling my scopes on a nightly basis, time is short, I don't want to waste it doing that, hence the interest in this book.

I have read other bits about home made observatories in other books, but this gem is by far the most comprehensive, I definitely recommend this.

One incidental thing about this book, it is great to leave laying around to 'prime' a partner that there is change about to take place in the garden!
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Having returned to astronomy after many years of absence I decided that the above would be amongst my list of up to date literature, together with the Cambridge Star Atlas and The Backyard Astromoners Guide, all from Amazon of course. My first thoughts on reading "Setting up a small observatory" gave me the impression that it would be better not to bother, as virtually all observatories have some problem or other, be it the cost of and access to a dome or the collecting of moisture in roll off roof and shed designs. However, once informed of the pitfalls I was compelled to think of ways to overcome them, and in so doing tailor an individual solution to my own requirements. For me it looks like a slightly raised deck with the assembled tripod and mount permanently in position, and covered when not in use by a close fitting, pyramid shaped ventilated wooden case which will be lifted off whem wanting to observe. It is then a simple of matter to fit the optical tube assembly to the mount and you're reaady to go.

This is an excellent book for anyone considering several options at an optimum cost. My only criticism was the black and white photographs which, though excellent in detail, in some cases could have done to have been of better quality.
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The book is a very good read, with plenty of ideas, well written, and I feel easy for a beginner to follow. I am pleased that I bought it and even though I have been an observer for over fifty years now I still picked up useful info.
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