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Tripod suggestions for an EQ6 mount.

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#1 Sunspot

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 02:08 PM

Hi all,

I'm in the process of thinking about getting a 6" F/8 refractor (about 20 pounds) and would like to mount it on my Skywatcher EQ6 mount. I'm sure the head can handle the scope, but I think the stock tripod may not be up to the task. I'm wondering what would be a good tripod to buy to sturdy up the mount. What adapters (if any) would be needed also.

The scope will be used for high resolution (F/30+) solar imaging.

Thanks!
Paul

#2 andysea

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 08:06 PM

I definitely agree. IMO the tripod is the weak link of the Atlas.
For my mach1 I have a Rob Miller TRi36L. It's amazingly light (8lb.) and stable, I think it carries 300lb. I am not sure what adapter would be necessary but I'm sure you can find out from Rob directly. He can probably just make one for the Atlas.
I think people also use the Losmandy tripod, however that is way heavier.
Wood tripods can also be very stable. The Tak tripod that I have is super sturdy and it also looks good in my living room:)
Here are some options that someone else pointed out on another thread.
http://www.firstligh...om/tripods.html
Andy

#3 orlyandico

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:34 PM

Hey Andy,

I know the RM is great, but a fully decked out one with the levelers comes close to the price of an Atlas :tonofbricks:

And I don't know what's the lead time on them right now.. I would guess 2 months at least since Rob is probably chasing a Christmas backlog, and it's holidays.

I haven't seen the Atlas tripod, but if it's similar to the 2" steel leg tripod of the CGEM, it would be very sturdy. A TPI Astro spreader would make it even more stable and at $225 is more palatable price-wise.

The other option is a Berlebach Planet, or the Binoscope Company tripod. Both well over $500 (in fact the Planet costs more than a Rob Miller, but it's wood if you like wood).

#4 Sunspot

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:00 PM

A spreader...wow, I didn't think of that! Certainly well worth a try isn't it?

Thanks!!!
Paul

#5 orlyandico

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:09 PM

hi Paul,

according to Ed (Deep Space Products) and others, a CGEM standard tripod with the TPI spreader is as rigid as the 3" tube CGEM DX tripod. I admit $225 (+$25 SH) for a spreader is pretty steep, but compared to the alternative of buying a new tripod, not so bad.

Of course you could rig your own spreader out of plywood or something, but the TPI looks great. And judging from your sig line, you love fine equipment. :D

#6 andysea

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:03 AM

Ahh yeah you're right Orlando! There's always that little detail of cost :)
I remember Ed suggesting the spreader. Definitely worth a try!
These guys seem to have a great reputation.
http://www.tpiastro.com/spreaders.htm

#7 Sunspot

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 09:24 AM

Great!! I have one on my shopping list for after the first of the year. Feeling better about stuff now!

Paul

#8 hottr6

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:10 AM

A surveyors mount is a possibility. You can buy them for a lot less than $100 (used) on fleabay, including shipping. You would need some sort of head adapter from Universal Astronomics (around $60).

Convention gives the nod to wooden legs over aluminum legs for damping, but wooden legs weigh a lot more.

A surveyors mount without a spreader can be awkward to carry as the legs will flop around in all directions, but with practice, it becomes pretty easy.

Surveyors tripods have spiked feet; check if you will ever use/store the tripod on flooring you care about.

#9 orlyandico

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:08 AM

I made a spreader/anti-kersplat device for a surveyor tripod I had lying around. It consists of three pairs of cabinet hinges and three pieces of aluminum.

Although I really cannot see how this surveyor tripod can do better than the stock Atlas / EQ6 tripod. I have a CGEM sitting right next to my surveyor tripod, and the CGEM tripod is far sturdier.

#10 EFT

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:31 PM

The Atlas/EQ6 tripod is actually a pretty good tripod (especially when compared to the equivalent iOptron tripod). Adding an aftermarket spreader removes pretty much every bit of vibration as as far as load goes, you won't have any problem. There are some great aftermarket tripods, but you will end up spending 3 to 4 times as much for them.

#11 Full Sun

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:50 PM

I have just finished installing the TPI astro spreader on my IOptron IEQ45 mount. It fits securely, has impressive design and build quality and has essentially ended my quest for an additional pier. This is a good investment to set-up,stabilize, and increase the mounts capability IMO. Your mileage should not vary.

#12 Sunspot

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 06:09 PM

I think you mentioned this while I was at your house a while back, but for some reason it didn't sink in...mission accomplished this time. :lol: BTW, going to get the CGE-Pro to you shortly after the first of the year.

Paul

The Atlas/EQ6 tripod is actually a pretty good tripod (especially when compared to the equivalent iOptron tripod). Adding an aftermarket spreader removes pretty much every bit of vibration as as far as load goes, you won't have any problem. There are some great aftermarket tripods, but you will end up spending 3 to 4 times as much for them.



#13 Sunspot

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 12:35 PM

Just a small update on this thread. After reading all the great suggestions I decided I should first do what I can with the current setup. So I took a wrench and went out to tighten the nuts on the tripod to pier setup. I couldn't believe it! The nuts were only finger tight! After tightening them up I put the EON120 on the mount and tried it out this morning on the sun. Seeing was horrible, but imaging at F/30 there was noticeably less vibration while focusing with the electric focuser! If that made that much difference, I can't wait to get a set of spreaders and install them to see how much better the mount will be!

Thanks again for all the valuable help!
Paul






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