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Berelebach Planet up to carrying an A-P 900?

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#1 jrbarnett

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:47 PM

The title says it all. Is the Berelbach Planet tripod sturdy enough to handle an A-P 900 and a typical A-P 900 sized payload (i.e., a C14 or big 6-7" APO OTA)?

Thanks,

Jim

#2 jmiele

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 11:07 PM

IMO Jim, "can do" and "should do" come to mind. I understand the attraction of the Berelbach tripod not only for it's beauty, but it's portability. The 900 is 50+ pounds, then weights and a payload. :) IDK....IMO a Rob Miller Tri36M would be just as light and capable of jacking up your car in the desert should it become necessary. :) As for holding a C-14 on a 900 or a TEC 180FL I know the Tri36M can because I've used it to do so.

Best, Joe

#3 gnowellsct

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 11:42 PM

I own one and although I think the rating of the tripod says "yes" my personal answer is "no." I would and did use my C14 on the Losmandy HD but after mounting it several times on the Berlebach I wouldn't do that. Too much weight up high and the footprint of the tripod legs is a bit too narrow. There are some issues with getting the legs tight enough to prevent slippage. Maybe the models with the extra leg clamps help with that.

I note however that Astro-physics is selling the Berlebach so maybe you should call them. But to my mind the Berlebach is a G11/FS128 type of mount. Or Mach 1.

I will likely by the g11 tripod head adapter which allows you to put an AP900 on a Losmandy HD. That I am interested in trying. Since my Berlebach has the G11 adapter already it could by definition then be used with the same AP piece to hold the AP900.

But I've no intention of doing that. My interest in the AP900 is either the HD tripod or the ATS pier for which it is already suited.

Greg N

#4 brianb11213

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 02:56 AM

Whilst I have a Berlebach Planet & am extremely pleased with it, I think the load you suggest would be more than I would feel comfortable letting it handle. The good people at Berlebach would advise that their Sky model is a better match; it has 40% extra load carrying capacity (according to their documentation) and is similar in physical size to but is actually lighter than the Planet model due to use of composites (carbon fibre) rather than wood for the lower leg sections.

Unfortunately there's a serious "upgrade" on the price tag, too. (About three times the price).

#5 herrointment

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 03:16 AM

Giving up on the CGE Pro?

#6 M13 Observer

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 10:55 AM

The title says it all. Is the Berelbach Planet tripod sturdy enough to handle an A-P 900 and a typical A-P 900 sized payload (i.e., a C14 or big 6-7" APO OTA)?

Thanks,

Jim


Define "handle".

For visual use, if you can withstand some or occasionally a lot (depending on the moment arm of the load and wind direction, etc) of jitter, shake, vibration when focusing or in breezy conditions then the answer is "maybe".

For imaging use the answer is quite simply "no".

I second what Joe said, get a light weight TRI36M or a much heavier ATS. I personally think the Rob Miller TRI36x series of tripods are the best thing out there with the exception of variable height adjustment but what do I know. I have only owned and used ATS (1), Astro-Physics portable piers (2), Berlebach (2), EQ6 (1 - never, ever again), Gitzo carbon fiber (2), PWT Monolith (1), and Rob Miller tripods (2). Used with suitable TAK SPIII, AP400, Mach1GTO, AP900, AP1200 mounts both for visual and imaging with a variety of telescopes. I still have the mounts but I am down to what I consider to be the absolute best tripods when considering all the specifications, the Gitzo Carbon Fiber for up to the AP400 with 5" refractor mainly for visual use but also good for solar imaging, and Rob Miller tripods for all night-time use. I have to say that the PWT Monolith is the most physically robust and beautiful tripod I ever owned, but it also weighed in at 55 over pounds and I just got tired of carting it around. It replaced my ATS tripod which was physically just as massive but didn't have the "presence" of the Monolith in my opinion. The Rob Miller tripods weigh in at 15 pounds for the TRI36M, look great, and give up almost nothing in terms of overall performance. I am in no way related to or part of Rob Miller's enterprise. I just know it is good stuff.

#7 peleuba

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 03:25 PM

I own one and although I think the rating of the tripod says "yes" my personal answer is "no."



I also own one and would not use an AP900 with it. I have an ATS pier that has handled an AP900. But for the BerleBach Planet, I think the G11/Mach1 class mount would be the most I would consider putting on the tripod.

#8 gnowellsct

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 11:01 PM

You can even just tell from the proportions IMO. Take a look at the pic and then "imagine" an AP900 and a C14 on top.

this link

Or a picture

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#9 gnowellsct

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Posted 13 August 2012 - 11:02 PM

Now take a look at the same scope on the AP900QMD and mentally move that mount on to the Berlebach. A picture is worht a thousand words.

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#10 jrbarnett

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 12:28 PM

Yep, that Planet looks like it could be tippy with the A-P 900 atop. Not my cup of tea. Thanks Greg.

- Jim

#11 Patrik Iver

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Posted 16 August 2012 - 02:21 PM

I can't comment on the load capcity of a Berlebach Planet - I've only had a bit more than 20 kg or so on mine, but I do agree on the stock leg angle. Which is why I ordered mine with a wider stance. I originally wanted to specify a certain angle, but Berlebach suggested that they deliver it with the spreader hardware loose (mounted, but not screwed to the upper leg sections). After delivery, I chose a leg angle I felt comfortable with, and locked the spreader in position with the supplied screws. Resulting in a Planet far less likely to tip over with an assymetric load (in my case a DM6 with heavy 130 mm triplet OTA).

The Planet is my second Berlebach tripod, and both times (my first order was about 10 years ago) the company has been very flexible and pleasant to work with when discussing various options and alternatives.

#12 peleuba

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Posted 17 August 2012 - 10:35 AM

I can't comment on the load capcity of a Berlebach Planet - I've only had a bit more than 20 kg or so on mine, but I do agree on the stock leg angle. Which is why I ordered mine with a wider stance.



Yes exactly. I have the stock tray which does not provide a very wide stance. And, neither does the Berlebach spreader I have. I ordered the large triangular tray which does provide an ample spread of the legs leading to a very strong, very stable platform in which to mount a telescope. But even so, I would not put an AP900 on it.

Like you, I have had an excellent experience going directly to Berlebach.

#13 JMW

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Posted 19 August 2012 - 12:35 AM

I have a Planet that works great with my Discmount DM6 with a Losmandy extension. I tried my AP-900 with a C11 Edge on it and found a little bit of flex when I tapped hard on the scope. I have the version with double leg clamps. I ended up buying a Rob Miller 36M tripod for imaging in the field and it is perfect. I keep the Planet for visual use with my DM6.






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