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Sunday, May 1, 2016

ScopeDome is here!!

The ScopeDome is finally here!!! Some assembly is required, but I plan on enjoying every frustrating step.The truck arrived at 9:30 on Saturday. Just in time for Golden Week. The driver did a great job of gently lifting the 404 kg dome and placing it exactly where I wanted it.

Within minutes I had the protective wrapping off the dome and was taking inventory of everything.

Everything was labeled and easy to identify. Good job on the packaging.

My only complaint is the amount of rust on the door hardware. I shouldn't be surprised because the obsy has been on a ship for nearly 2 months. I'll take care of the rust after the dome is assembled.

I’ll present some of the highlights of assembling the observatory. Generally, all that is required are some basic tools and mechanical ability. Some steps require up to 4 people to accomplish due to the size of the dome panels. They are huge! The assembly will be divided into three parts, the exterior, interior and the electronics. Well, let’s get started…

Base ring assembly. Now, this is fun!!

Sealant was applied and then the ring was...

...bolted down.

The rollers were wired for 200VAC. The rollers apply voltage to metal bands that run the circumference of the ring. As the dome turns, voltage is constantly provided to the rotating part of the dome. A very clean and ingenious way of reducing wire clutter.

The base ring was assembled and checked for roundness. The ring was fastened to the platform with large bolts. Then the rollers were wired for 200VAC.

Note the metal bands that provide hot, neutral, and ground to the rotating part of the dome. 

The rotating ring easily rotates with the push of one hand

 The rotating ring was assembled and checked for proper fit on the base ring.
After the base/ rotating rings were joined a simple test was performed. I checked to see if the rotating ring rotated easily with a push of a hand. It worked! I greased the rollers and added the support angles.

The eight supports prevent the dome from blowing away in a typhoon. 

 The final part of the base assembly was the cover installation.

That's it for now. Installation of the huge side panels will be next. We'll need some help with this step. Anyone interested?     George


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