So we’ve got all this stuff ands wires and cables and brackets and adapters that all look the same and filters and eyepieces and bits that we really don’t remember buying and have no idea what they are for… and we all live where it’s not great to observe from, so we all have to transport it all over the place, and it’s all very fragile, and… well, you get the picture!
How do we store it and organise it so on the rare nights observing is good we are truly ready to grab and go?
Storage for the OTAs themselves is troublesome. Problem is that they’re just too bloody big. I’ve got two Newtonian reflectors, one a dobsonian, the other a separate OTA. These live in the garage without any other protection. I would like to improve on this, but storage just isn’t exciting, is it? And why is telescope storage so bloody expensive? Celestron sell bags and cases for their gear but they are over £300!! If I’ve got that much to spend I want to get something useful and gadgety – not a bloody glorified suitcase!
In my hometown of Amesbury, Wiltshire (the home of Stonehenge) a new shop has just opened called B&M. I went for a wander around and saw they were selling bi plastic wheeled toolbox-type cases for only £19.99. I thought they looked like they might be useful for general telescope stuff so I got one. It was on,y when it was sat in my lounge that I realised it might be a good storage and transport solution for my Celestron C8 Edge HD OTA. I tried the scope in their with its original Ethafoam type packaging and saw that, with only a few modifications it would be a perfect solution.
I had to cut the packaging with a sharp craft knife to allow it to fit around some of the internal mouldings, and used some of these off cuts to pad out the case in other areas. Finally I used some of that wonderful Sugru stuff to fix the bottom half of the packaging to the bottom of the crate. It looks great and is a secure and rigid solution to the storage problem.
Im going to buy some more Ethafoam sheets to make an area for the finder scope and any other Edge-only accessories to live so I can store it all in one place!