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Would like opinion - Losmandy or iOptron?

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36 replies to this topic

#26 Midnight Dan

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 06:21 PM

Hi Roger:

Yes, I would definitely buy the iEQ45 again. And I would think the IEQ30 could handle the FS102 or binos with no problem for visual.


#27 hottr6



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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:10 AM

Losmandy - Made in the USA :usa:

#28 orlyandico


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Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:14 AM

The EM200 weighs as much as a CGEM/Atlas. Back-breaking.

The extremely rare AP400 GTO would meet your requirements - 18lb weight, very nice machining, Made in the USA.. but it's extremely rare and doesn't come cheap ($4000 last I checked).

Having gone through this selection mechanism recently, the only (relatively) lightweight mount that ticks all the boxes is the Mach1. And we all know where that goes..

Why not just get a CG-5 ASGT and accept that it won't carry more than 15 lb for AP? at least that way your cash out is minimal..

#29 Hikari


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Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:04 AM

I would consider Takahashi--And it is made in Japan! [0] Takahashi generally has very conservative specs.

#30 andysea



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Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:58 AM

I can vouch for Tak quality. Their craftsmanship is top notch and tracking is superb.
Regarding the G-11 I'm a little confused about the advertised payload. Losmandy says 60lbs but when I looked at it next to my Mach1 it didn't look a lot heftier than the AP which only carries 45lbs.

#31 David Ault

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 11:41 AM

If I were in your position, I would save up for a AP900. The RA and DEC assemblies split with the RA weighing just 26.5 lbs and the DEC weighing in at 17 lbs. Paired with an 9.25" EdgeHD (21 lbs) and/or a nice 4" triplet refractor (mid to high 20's if you go for the carbon fiber versions) this would be excellent for visual or AP. I also agree that a backyard observatory would be a great option. I think the AP900 would get you a great observatory mount and it would be light enough when you want to go on the road. I've seen them pop up in classifieds as low as $5k, but that seems kind of rare and typically that includes nothing but the mount.


#32 andysea



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Posted 13 November 2012 - 12:01 PM

The AP900 is a great mount. I was going back and forth between that and the Mach1. I decided for the Mach1 because it's newer and lighter and it carries all my telescopes. I do agree that the 900 would be an excellent choice.
I would recommend buying new instead of used.


#33 chboss


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Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:54 PM

Well it is always a question what you are ready to pay and what your weight limit is...

I think the iOptron iEQ45 is a decent mount with reasonable price and low weight compared to similar offerings like the Atlas or CGEM.
The one I own had no problems so far. I would buy it again no question.

If you are looking for a lifetime mount:
Tak EM-11, AP Mach1 or a bit lower in price the Losmandy GM-8.
The Mach1 can carry more weight than the other two.

best regards

#34 Mr_T



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Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:27 AM

I used the G11 Gemini 1 with the SV70 and SV102 side by side I then switched the SV 102 out and used a Tak 106 with the sv70 on top the mount handled it fine for Astro imaging with fli16803 on the back and thats a big camera and filter wheel
I found polar aligning pretty easy with the polar scope. The G11 is a long time performer and can be picked up at a reasonable price on the Used market


#35 Skyshooter


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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:32 AM

Hi Kev, I wouldn't factor out the G8 so soon. It's portability and build quality cannot be overlooked. You could mount a lightweight 105mm like the SVR105 (10 lbs) with the 70mm no problem. I'd piggyback though(balance issues). I carry out the mount without the OTA(s) attached, then slide on the OTA(s). Very manageble.... I usually use the SVR90T (7 lbs) with ZS66 piggybacked (3.5 lbs). I like to take this out to dark sites in the summertime so portability is an issue for me. Your health being an issue for you... You're an ME ( my wife is also, MIT) and you're familliar with the G8. It is made in the U.S., parts are available and YOU can actually work on it. That being said, The Ioptron looks pretty cool and is lightweight too. The Tak is definately a proven performer... The G11 might be a little much... The wait times on Losmandy can take awhile...
I'm sure you'll have fun coming up with the package that's
best for you. Just make sure you take care of your back.


#36 Startraffic


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Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:46 PM

I've never seen the Ioptron. My only experience is with one of their 90mm f4 refracter that I use as a finder/guider. Good OTA. I'm the 3rd owner of my G11. It started as a DDS, & I've added the PS, Clutches, tripod knobs, encoders, OPW, & a Cassidy saddle, & Gemini-2. It has been an awesome mount. I upgraded to an HGM-200 for more capacity. You know the drill with the Losmandys', they just don't quit. The "Other" mounts I've had have ALL required a lot of work to get to run well, & they still didn't live up to the advertised specs. The G11 worked right from the start. I have a bad habit of breaking the RA gearboxes & can have the mount back in business in 15 minutes. When my old Vixen & LXD broke it was never a pretty picture. If you have the ability to pier mount, then a G11 no question. If you can do an Observatory, even better. If you need to be semi-Grab-N-Go then maybe the lighter weight is better for your back.

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#37 nomosnow


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Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:57 PM

I have an iEQ45 and I like it ,when it works .I have a memory card problem right now:(
However if you have a bad back and a back yard why not a scope buggy?
I made my own and I have 2 of them no more lifting for me:)
Also with alignment pins on it I can put my iEQ45 in the same spot so polar alignment is not needed sometimes . My setup time is almost as quick as opening up an observatory!

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