Half Hitch--who has one?
Posted 12 May 2009 - 07:44 AM
Posted 12 May 2009 - 06:05 PM
For those who say that the Half Hitch is expensive, I can only say that the old adage of "you get what you pay for" rings very true in this case. The first time you use it you'll never think about the price again.
Posted 12 May 2009 - 07:00 PM
If that's not enough Charles, the proprietor of the HH system, is always available to personally answer your questions.
Posted 12 May 2009 - 09:09 PM
Posted 12 May 2009 - 09:43 PM
It is light weight but very sturdy for my TSA-102 and TMB-105. It is well balanced at any direction that my scopes are pointing with very little friction applied. All the attention to details paid to the mounts are great such as built in bubble head, scales on the dovetail plates and saddle plates, horizontal stop, vertical stop and the best dovetail clamp(Mark III feature) that I've every used.
The encoders are very accurate. The objects are always within FOV of my Pentax XW using 240X.
The mounts are very comfortable to use pointing at any direction due to its excellent zenith clearance and the two axis balance.
Posted 12 May 2009 - 10:47 PM
I enjoy the smooth operation of the mount, and really like how little it weighs. Attached to a light weight tripod and one of the many 80mm class refractors - it is the ultimate grab and go set-up. Easily handles the TV-102 if I need to use a 4" scope. Adding a FS-78 would be an excellent choice.
Posted 13 May 2009 - 12:08 AM
Please explain the benefits.
Posted 13 May 2009 - 12:39 AM
I have already been the friction route with the AstroTech Voyager. It was nice and held my TV 102 well enough, but along with a friction held mount comes constant fiddling and battling the balance between holding your scope securely and maintaining precision control.
Critical to being able to track an object, especially at high power, is to be able to effortlessly move your scope very slowly with precise control. If you have to constantly think about starting friction/moving/overshooting/compensating/jiggling observing sessions all that mental energy that you should be bringing to bear on the object in the eyepiece is instead being diverted to taming the physics of the mount. Even with slow motion controls there is friction to overcome, backlash to deal with, and jiggles because of the force needed to move it, stop it, control it..
Enter the Half Hitch. No starting friction. The same minimal energy to start it moving is the same energy that keeps it moving. It moves with fingertip control to any position and stops exactly where you let it go. There are no jiggles. Even without using its amazing slow motion controls.
You know how when you glide a new laser mouse on a nice mousepad you never have to think about the physical effort to move it? What would it be like to use a computer mouse that had the physics issues and lack of precise control of a typical AltAz that relies on friction? It would be a constant intrusion to the task at hand.
The Half Hitch moves in its 3D task as easily as a mouse does in its 2D task. It disappears and does not intrude in the experience of observing. I find that I can observe with much more ease and concentration because I am not constantly being distracted the mount.
Posted 13 May 2009 - 12:47 AM
Posted 18 May 2009 - 12:36 PM
I quite possibly would have bought the one I tested had it not been for some pending surgery and other medical treatment and the fact that I have an earlier alt-azimuth mount made by Charles Riddell, maker of the Half Hitch. My mount, the "Wagon" is a dual arm alt-azimuth with a 60 lb. payload capacity.
Posted 18 May 2009 - 04:34 PM
I was actually moving the scope with my forehead pushing the eyepiece for tracking! No backlash here baby!
Can't say enough about this mount. I usually get tired of equipment fairly quickly so i can try out new stuff but i won't be getting rid of this unless it's to upgrade to a Mark III.