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Buy Astro Stuff's Astro Chair

8 October 2002

For years I had been stooping at the eyepiece of my various telescopes and living with the literal "pain in the neck".  My conclusion: a chair is the most important piece of equipment you will buy for use with your telescope.  In the last year I have tried a couple of stools and chairs, but they either didn't have enough range in vertical adjustment or they were simply not portable.  A few months ago I built a chair (based on the Denver Observer's Seat) but my woodworking skills and tools didn't really allow for a professional job, so I was still looking.

Enter Buy Astro Stuff's Astro Chair.  I heard about it on the NexStar Yahoo Group (see the Links page), and in fact the owners of Buy Astro Stuff, Frank and Ray, are members of the Group.  Everything I heard was very promising and the price was right.  At $95 (USD) plus shipping, Buy Astro Stuff's chair is significantly lower in price than all other nationally advertised astronomy chairs.  The usual price for such a chair seems to be closer to $150.  I visited their web site (http://www.buyastrostuff.com), clicked the link for "Metal Astro Chair" and decided it was the right stuff.

So I got one.

Frank had my chair on its way in no time and I received it in less than a week (that's as fast as things can get from Colorado to Okinawa!).  I was a little worried when I got my first look at the package; the military postal gorillas had really done a number on the shipping carton.  I opened it there at the post office just to see if I needed to file a claim.  But my worries were unfounded, the chair was unscathed - it's a really tough customer.

Well, there's not a lot you can say about a chair, but here it is.  It is lightweight - about 10 pounds (4.5kg) - but very strong.  I'm not a heavy guy, but it definitely would hold someone with a healthy appetite.  The legs open sufficiently to provide a stable platform that still fits easily between the legs of a tripod.  It's very portable when stowed.  It folds up into a slim 4 inches (10cm) that can easily fit in your closet or your car trunk.  When folded, a clever design feature locks the seat in an upright position to ease storage and transport.

Most importantly, it's comfortable!  The padded seat adjusts from about 18 inches (46cm) up to 31 inches (80cm).  At the higher elevations the sturdy footrest is a welcome addition.  The height is easily adjustable with one hand and soon you will be adjusting it like a pro.  I now find myself quickly fine-tuning it for maximum comfort each time I move to a new object.

If you don't have an observing chair, you need one.  And Buy Astro Stuff's Astro Chair is as good as they get.  Well, that is until I get that antigravity chair that moves by thought command. 


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