Welcome to the Community Rig…

…the astrograph built from the knowledge, experience and ressources
from the hobby astronomer community
for the community.

The Idea

Share what you see in your telescopes with others, so they can see the marvels of the skies for themselves.

Since we have the pandemic, doing this on the sidewalk for everyone to join isn’t the greatest idea. The next best thing is to connect via internet to look through and at the same time, make this hobby more accessible and inspire new generations to come with curiosity of what is out there…

I saw Martin of Wintergatan build up the Marble Machine X, the iteration after his first Marble Machine. Also here, the build was happening somewhere in Europe, but the effort to design/discuss/construct/pre-mount was done jointly, collaboratively and jointly over the entire community forming around the MMX and the music band Wintergatan.

In order to do something like this, but with a telescope and not with a magical mechanical marvellous marble machine, the Rig for the Community would need to be based in a constructive, bright, good-willing and experienced community.

The Community

There is an English overnerd of hobby astronomy called Rory. He created a while back a Youtube channel called Astrobiscuit, where we see him mess around from simple mobile phones to highly advanced telescopes in attempts to capture the beauty hidden in the sky and to bring astronomy closer to everyone interested without having to spend too much money into the hobby.

The Community Rig is hosted off Astrobiscuit’s Discord Server. Members here have the opportunity to pilot the Rig if they would like to try a different sky (this one is in Bamberg, Germany), if they would like to try out the hobby of astrophotography or would just like to stargaze very faint objects.

The challenge was to put together an astrograph with limited ressources but as well as expensive high end mounts. The measure is the photography output of the Community Rig. Building the Rig was only possible because of the combined knowledge of all the Community Members involved!

As a thank you for the Community, I have dedicated the usage of this telescope to the hobby astronomic/astrographic Community.

The Rig

The astrograph was put together keeping cost within acceptable limits. Most parts are used or from manufacturers considered as cheap and low quality. Aside from trying to prove the point, that you can achieve quality photos with also “cheap” equipment, this Rig is also meant to illustrate how many devices can be made by yourself or upgraded by yourself.

The mount is an NEQ5 from Skywatcher. To upgrade it, I crafted a DIY Goto EQMOD-steered system with instructions and coding provided by AstroEQ.

The main electronic focuser is made off a SourceForge Project by Robert Brown called myFocuserPro2.

The Camera is a DIY astromodified and peltier cooled Canon EOS 700D. The cold chamber, set to 0°C, will achieve a constant and throughout the year repeatable 7°C on the CMOS Sensor.

All the devices are put on the mount it self, including the Raspberry Pi, which steers the Community Rig and allows remote connections with KStars, Teamviewer, Astroberry and Stellarmate.

The entire electrical system, as well as a tinkering and theft alarm system, are homemade.