I picked up a couple of kiln dried 2x4's at the local Home Depot, took them home, hacked at them for a half an hour or so and wallah! New tripod legs.
I cut the timber in half, giving me legs that would be 48" long.? I typically use the tripod legs extended to this length while observering and it was just darned handy to be able to use the purchased wood wisely.? The legs were trimmed to 3" wide. I angled the feet "Takahashi" style so that they would be less likely to move around.? The outer, left, and right edges are mitered at 45 degrees to make a point at the bottom. I cut 1.25" notches for the head assembly and ran a blade width cut down the middle of the legs from the notches for about 8 inches or so.? This allows flexibility in the wood when you tighten the legs to the head.
I planed the sharp edges with a hand plane and did some light sanding.? I attached the Vixen hardware tray assembly in about the same spot as the old tripod.??
The new tripod went from garage directly to my spot out front under the street lamp. It's pretty crappy conditions for all but the brightest night objects.? Jupiter was up and a transit of the great red spot was just starting.? The difference in stability was absolutely amazing.? The setup for the evening was a Televue SDF with the Televue Binoviewer. This was a heavy load for the original equipment and a brush with the eyepiece was enough to send the view into spasms for several seconds. Now the jitters dampen out in a second or so. The viewing was quite pleasant. Telescope shakes are really quite distracting for me. The problem was solved.
I like the change very much.? I might go ahead with the maple but you know what?? These cheapy pine legs might just get me through the next season!