Thank you gents. I tried to do as much homework as possible before I purchased, but I have too little time and patience plus couldn't really find too much out. And when you are a newbie, the 'name' you have heard all your life as the leader tends to get favored. Childhood's End - again - like so many other things
From last to first reply:
Bardo, the OAG idea seems like a wonderful suggestion. Do you know if that has been done successfully and if so, would you rec the Celestron OAG product?
Nemo129, sorry about you having gone down the same road. I have been in RC helicopters and airplanes for many years and made a website that sold nothing but became popular for videos and brutally honest reviews back when the technology was starting. When I get into something I finish until I am either VERY good at it or beaten, and will document this experience on my website as time permits the same way I did my other interest - hopefully to benefit newbies. Does the AP900 or even the Celestron higher end mount provide any level of portability? I mean, less than 100 lbs with tripod or something one guy can setup by himself without wearing a hernia truss? If so, I am going to look into them because that is why I bought this CGEM/11" combo. I was new to the hobby and portability was required to bring the setups for use at dark sky locations during events i go to with my rc heli hobby. Money wasnt too much of a problem so much as the ability to transport the equipment away from my LP home location. I didnt even know those other manufacturers existed 12 weeks ago and getting the 200 lb hi end celestron mount didnt seem to fit the bill.
Eddgie, as i wrote in another post, i didnt mean to bad mouth the celestron product so much as their marketing. The cgem / 11" edge hd combo is pitched as AP ready and I even called to ask before i bought it. If it was sold as visual it would have been a little more honest thats all. I do have an adm sbs V system that i tried on the cgem with the 8se and ed80/lodestar and it was much better. I am not sure the additional 4 or 5 lbs the sbs system adds to the 11" ota doesnt break even on the current setup, but will try.
If there are any mounts that can be SUV portable that handle an 11" sct and guidescope, I will likely pay the price and add the cgem to my 8se and its mount to the 'sell at a loss' bucket (and never sell it). The price of not doing enough homework i guess.
Thanks Scotty. I am proud of them with only 6 weeks in the hobby and never even having used a hi end DSLR before (the one I am using is my Dad's I borrowed it permanently I suspect). Problem is the CGEM works ok about 25% of my setups. Not to be mean to celestron but this is a good product that is just oversold. I will keep trying and keep posting and building the AP section of my website or setup a new one to document the experience and help newbies/users get the straight skinny. Wish I spent more time on this great forum before I purchased, but that's why EBay was invented anyway! The forums in the RC heli business became controlled and you couldn't post an honest review. This one seems different. All for fun anyway but my time is precious and it is frustrating to have rooms full of stuff that i buy to get to the right setups.
Cost be damned, any suggestions for the best mount for AP with 35-50 lbs of equipment, that can be SUV transported and setup by one person, that is as computer / wingman remote friendly (I like Nexremote) as the CGEM - are all welcome and appreciated. Or recs like the OAG idea above!