Have you dreamed of your own observatory but felt it was completely out of your reach? The folks at Polydome have made the dream of your very own observatory within reach of most amateur astronomers by offering a well-made, fairly lightweight dome on a simple 8' round building that can be tricked out as little or as much as you want; right away or over a period of time. This allows you to add other features, like automated dome rotation or shutter movement as your budget allows.
The dome portion of the Explora-Dome 8' Observatory is roto-molded as a one piece-unit from UV-stabilized polyethylene that is a minimum of 1/4" thick. This material was chosen for many reasons. It is much less expensive than constructing a dome of fiberglass, and has better impact resistance than aluminum, steel, or fiberglass. This knowledge means you will feel much more secure when it starts to hail outside! Speaking of weather, snow and ice will have a tendency to slide off of the dome due to the slick polyethylene surface (its similar to Teflon). Add the fact that the dome is made of one piece of material and you have an observatory dome that will hold up to all kinds of weather.
The Explora Dome has a two-door shutter system. This system is visually documented in the additional images section. The lower shutter flips open and the upper shutter slides back to display the stars overhead. Automation is available optionally for the shutter, as well as for dome rotation.
The RBBLD8 ExploraDome 8" Dome Kit mounts to a user-supplied floor. Besides the dome, which is described above, this package includes the components to assemble an 8' round building and the materials necessary to attach the dome to the building itself. Heavy gauge steel siding makes up the walls and an aluminum door frame, along with a steel door complete with deadbolt lock, provides a heavy-duty entry system that will securely lock to protect your belongings.
Explora-Dome Door Construction
- Pre-hung four-way universal swing entry door
- 24 gauge hot dipped galvanized smooth steel 1-3/4" panels
- Panel strengthened with extruded aluminum reinforcing blocks at entry lock
- Master Frame weatherstripped with woven polypropylene pile
- Pressure injected with 2.2 pounds of polyurethane foam per cubic foot
- R-12 insulation value
- Extruded aluminum re-blocks for lock
- White and brown panels and jambs
- Rolled edge door panel
- Two coats of polyester paint for a durable and long lasting finish
- Door is mounted to the frame by three 12-gauge steel, 4-1/2" x 4" fixed pin hinges
- Hinges zinc plated for rust resistance
- Designed for steel, masonry and wood construction
If you take a look at the additional images, you will see how easy it is to assemble the building and mount the dome. Pictures are numbered 1 through 7 to show you the project one step at a time.