It's not a bus, but it needs wheels anyway.
My new Celestron CPC 1100 is big and heavy. With its optical tube assembly (OTA) weight approaching 75 lbs (includes focal reducer, focus motor, and 2" diagonal) and its tripod another 36 lbs, it's not as big and heavy as some of the other choices that I had considered, but it is marginal in terms of me being able to set up and take down without assistance.
I can carry the OTA assembly from the house, through the garage, and across the driveway to my preferred observation spot and get it mounted on the tripod without too much difficulty as long as I don't have to lower the OTA to the ground and lift it again. That is the troublesome part of the procedure as it is necessary to remove the OTA from the tripod and carry the tripod out first.
But, what if I could just keep the tripod and OTA together and just move the complete assembly?
It turns out that there are a number of "Scope Buggies" choices that one can purchase to perform that task. Oh, my. They are expensive.
I decided to try a DIY approach.
It took a while, but a plan coalesced.
|Thoughts captured in my notebook. Artsy, huh!?|
|A 2 by 4 seems a good choice. The wheel is a 4" caster with a rubber tire.|
|Wood glue and carriage bolts.|
|Tripod on wheeled base.|
The tripod fits nicely on the wheeled base and is firmly attached to it. I sat on the top of the tripod to test its robustness. The wheels are rated for 155 lbs. That gives me some margin.
|Curved bracket and wood screws.|
|Simple scissor jack from my car.|
|Scope leveler via carriage bolt, nuts, bracket, and epoxy putty.|