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GM-8 onto a Berlebach...how big a nightmare?

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#1 ukcanuck

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 02:11 PM

I'm about to buy a Losmandy GM-8, which I will (somehow) be attaching to a Berlebach tripod...

The Berlebach has a nice big mounting plate, so I don't expect any stabililty issues, but I don't expect the Losmandy to have a nice convenient thread hole for the tripod's anchor bolt, so I do anticipate issues with anchoring the head to the tripod.

Has anyone done this? ...failing that, anything similar?

Picture of the tripod head below (I'll lose the bubble level and need to remove the pin, of course).

How big a headache is this going to be? :question:

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#2 AlanT

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 02:58 PM

I think a pretty big nightmare. I just bought a new GM-8 with the LW tripod. The fit of the head to the tripod is completely different than what shows in your image, (which looks like a CG-5 type head). See the bottom image here for what the configuration would look like for the GM-8: http://www.berlebach...sprache=english

I'm thinking to make your current tripod work with a GM-8, a custom adaptor would have to be made, which I doubt would be worth it unless you're a machinist with materials at hand.

al

#3 ukcanuck

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:19 PM

I think a pretty big nightmare.


Yeah, that's what I'm thinking too.

My tripod is a CG-5 head...I've used a Losmandy before, but was hoping there was a sneaky trick I hadn't noticed when setting it up! I have a machinist friend, but I may have called in all my favours... :smirk:

#4 Doug D.

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 03:20 PM

You might want to ask the folks at Teton Telescope in US or Berlebach direct in Germany. There is an adapter for mounting a Losmandy mount but this is for a flat top version of the tripod with center bolt. I was looking into a similar solution for my UNI-24 and I was told by Berlebach that it is possible to replace the whole top platform (i.e., keep legs and hardware but replace just top bit) with one that is specific for your mount but didn't get far enough to figure out what it would cost - I bought another tripod in the end.

#5 RAKing

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 05:39 PM

Wow, I was going to say this looks rather simple - but maybe there's more to it.

How big is the flat plate top of your tripod? The Losmandy mount does not have a center bolt - it drops into a ring like the A-P mounts. But you need a top plate about 6 inches in diameter to make this work and that's where my plan might fail.

If your top plate is big enough, I would suggest two pieces of gear from A-P to solve the problem. One is the ADATRI. It's the A-P basic tripod adapter that bolts to the flat top plate of a tripod. You will have to drill and tap 3 holes (5/16" IIRC).

Then get the A-P Losmandy adapter, LM2APT, bolt it to the ADATRI and you can mount any Losmandy (or a Mach1 someday) to your tripod.

Hope this helps a bit,

Ron

#6 Doug D.

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 08:21 PM

Ron's idea will work if the holes and thus, bolts for the ADATRI will clear the cast iron ribs underneath - I'm not sure they will. I went through this when I tried to adapt my UNI24 for the Mach 1 GTO with an ADATRI. It was a pretty close call and in the end because I wasn't sure the UNI24 had the necessary capacity I just gave up.

The other problem is when you add up the costs of the ADATRI and then the LM2APT so you can mount your GM8, you are into it for about $200. That is why I think it might be worth seeing what it would cost to swap out the top of the tripod you have for the version Berlebach sells specifically for Losmandy. BTW, which model tripod is that - looks like a UNI?

#7 Tamiji Homma

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 11:00 PM

Hi ukcanuck,

I'll have Berlebach Planet tripod (flat top) and Losmandy adapter delivery tomorrow for G11 mount. I'll let you know how it would look like.

I asked Mark (Teton Telescope) to see if he is getting other adapters like ADAP-L. He said he is going to :) I am interested in Vixen SXD adapter myself.

Tammy

#8 ukcanuck

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 03:26 AM

Thanks all for your comments...I didn't know the Berlebach adaptor part existed, I'm looking into that now.

#9 Tamiji Homma

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 10:33 PM

It seems that Berlebach has specialized mount top for different mount. The one I got today is flat top at the center 3/8"-ish screw from bottom. I guess it is more generic type mount top.

They do have well built Losmandy adapter (1363 grams adapter alone). It is mounted using six 6mmx16mm screw. It is very solid tripod. It looks like this, TMB 130SS/DM-6/extender and Losmandy adapter+Berlebach Planet tripod.

Posted Image

I primarily use with G11/DM-6 but I would like to use with Vixen SXD. I probably look for some adapter on top of Losmandy adapter.

Tammy

#10 maknewtnut

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 11:35 PM

Piece of cake if you can drill 6 holes around the perimeter of that platform(after receiving the Losmandy adapter to act as a template of course). I have all UNI and PLANET series tripods delivered to Teton with the holes already drilled, but have drilled one myself. Pretty simple stuff really.

#11 ukcanuck

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 11:33 AM

Picked up the mount today...as luck would have it, there's a centre hole in the tripod head, so once the legs were removed, I was able to use a longer bolt to anchor it to the tripod for lightweight, temporary use. A rubber strip between the two keeps it from sliding, although does permit a bit of movement, but as it's temporary, it's not an issue.

I'll need to drill additional holes in the tripod head to anchor it properly as Mark has mentioned, but I think it will be fine without the adaptor. I'll probably use the holes already present for mounting the legs in place.

What a great looking mount...:cool:

Thanks for all the advice.

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#12 pmlogg

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Posted 08 September 2009 - 09:00 AM

Richard

The base of the LW tripod is exactly the same as the Losmandy Meade (MA) adapter. My G-11 (and GM-8 before it) is mounted on a vintage Berlebach UNI 5 tripod. Luckily it is flat topped with a standard 3/8" captive bolt - but the centre hole in the MA and LW tripod is 1/2". I bought 3/8" to 1/2" thread adapters to fill the gap and a 3/8 screw with nuts and washers to secure from the top down. The opening on your Berlebach may be a standard 75mm size so that a 'half bowl' could be used. These can be obtained with 1/2" or 3/8" bolts, which would then fit to the LW base / MA. I also found bronze bushings available on the web that would produce a good interference fit with the bottom of the MA (plus a rim), were the correct length and which had the correct internal dimensions to be threaded for a 3/8" bolt. Although I bought a pair of these I'll only fit one if I have a problem with the current arrangement. Drilling the head is of course another option but I wasn't going to risk damaging the head in a DIY attempt and I don't know of a local machinest that would do it a sensible price.

Thanks

Peter

#13 pmlogg

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Posted 08 September 2009 - 09:09 AM

Richard

Further to my last, when I bought my UNI 5 I looked into the cost to change the Berlebach head but it was expensive especially once VAT is added. The Losmandy adapter from Teton, which I also asked about, can also be bought direct from Berlebach but it too is expensive and still needs drilling to fit. I already had the MA (bought via Astrobuysell in Canada)for a pier project that never happened. Before it went onto my tripod my main use for the MA was to support the GM-8 head on the kitchen table en route to the LW tripod. That was necessary because the Losmandy knobs hang down below the bottom of the mount. I'm now using the Bob's Knobs equivalent which being T-handled instead of round do not have that disadvantage.

Thanks

Peter

#14 AlienRatDog

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 08:41 AM

Is the Berlebach tripod an upgrade to the standard GM8 tripod?

#15 GlenM

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 02:36 PM

Hi Richard,

Can I assume you have a GM8 tripod for sale?

#16 gnowellsct

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Posted 16 September 2009 - 05:01 PM

I'm the guy that wrote to Berlebach, said they should have a Losmandy adapter, gave them the specs, mailed them parts, and then tested it for them. I have both a custom adapter made by a local machine shop for the original Berlebach head and the second generation (which is commercial adapter). The commercial Berlebach adapter is actually better made than the original Losmandy, which is saying a good deal.

I try to get the word out:

http://www.astromart...?article_id=663

and I note that if you do a google search on "berlebach" and "G11" that this article comes up first. It also comes up first when one does "berlebach" and "g8" but I'm wondering if this is fine-tuned personalized result.

good luck,
Greg N

Greg N

#17 ukcanuck

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 05:44 AM

Hi Richard,

Can I assume you have a GM8 tripod for sale?


Hi Glen, I'll probably keep the tripod for now, in case my creation doesn't work out in the long term.

#18 GlenM

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Posted 17 September 2009 - 08:09 AM

Thanks Richard. I'm sure the Berlbach will work out just fine.

Enjoy Kelling.






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