Galaxy Blues Observatory

Observatory Description


When I had a chance to buy a house in 2003, suddenly I realized that I could finally build an observatory and increase my observing time substantially. Not having to set up the equipment and tearing it down after each observing session saves me about an hour.

One of the members of the Ottawa Valley Astronomy and Observers Group that I belong to built an observatory after joining in 2001. Unfortunately, he passed away a year later, and the observatory he built was purchased by another member shortly thereafter. Then, in 2005, he decided to sell it, so I jumped at the chance and acquired it for muc less than it would have cost me to build from scratch.

After many hours of work and lots of help from my father and a few friends, it was set up in August 2005.

Here's a picture of the observatory. It's a roll-off roof type, you can see the support structure at the back for the roof to roll of on. It measures 8 feet by 8 feet, with walls about 5 feet high.

Galaxy Blues Observatory

Here's a shot of the back, with the support trusses for the roof rails.

Back of GBO

And here's what it looks like with the roof rolled off.

Roof off of GBO

The pier is mad of reinforced concrete, and has an adjustment plate custom made by my friend Ken Whitnall.

Pier of GBO

And here's a close-up of the adjustment plate. It is held in place with three threaded rods that were inserted in the concrete before it set.

Support Plate for Mount on Pier of GBO

And if you're wondering why I called the observatory Galaxy Blues Observatory, the colour of the paint used for the pier and the inside is called Deep Galaxy. Knowing that the back yard is constantly flooded with the light of 3 sodium lights shining down onto a parking lot just behind my property, and knowing that I wouldn't have a chance to see any galaxy without help from some equipment, I thought that the name was appropriate.

On to the equipment page!