My name is Alan Rifkin and I moved to western Massachusetts back in the mid 70’s. II am a member of the Springfield STARs, Arunah Hill Natural Science Center, and the STM’s. My friends have been encouraging me to make some of my designs commercial. The DynaPod Division is the answer to them.
I am an Eclipse Chaser. During the Eclipse of 1998 on a sailing trip to a very small Caribbean island, my tripod was damaged by the airlines, and after a few on the spot repairs it was back in service. However the wind shook my tripod and ruined my eclipse images. I then decided I needed a light weight, salt water proof, airline proof, Indestructible tripod to take with me on trips. Soon the DynaPod jumped off the drawing board and into reality. When the airlines refused to let me carry it on board, I just went back to the drawing board. Four months later DynaPod II earned a mechanical design award at Stellafane.
Since then, I have worked on many other ideas for holding up my telescopes and making it easier to get out there and view. The organizations that I belong to hold many public star parties. I also have a few wheelchair bound friends. Some of my designs can be used to get almost anyone to the eyepiece.
Most of the products that I sell are my own designs, and are either made by me or exclusively for me. There are some other products that I carry because I think they will be helpful to astronomers. I take all these components and assemble complete observing systems tailored to my clients needs. Thus my slogan “All you add is the sky!” I also sell just the components and kits for people who want to do it themselves. If you want a system or components, please contact me so we can discus your needs.
I am always interested in other people’s stories and ideas, if you want to contact me, please do.