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Celestron SLT Discontinued

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#1 makipper1

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 09:25 PM

It is worth noting that the Celestron SLT mount is being discontinued. I have that from Celestron customer service, and indeed they have vanished from most vendors. Celestron still has some stock for now. From customer service: "The mount will not be available for much longer..."

Mark

#2 geminijk

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 10:53 PM

Something new coming our way no doubt at that price point.

John

#3 Lee Jay

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 09:06 AM

The SLT I owned (127) was so bad that I actually returned it. Hopefully, they can come up with something useful at this price point. My ETX-125 was better by a factor of 10 or more.

#4 Widespread

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:20 AM

I am inordinately fond of my SLT mount; I only wish its tripod connection were standard so I could put it on a better tripod. It will be interesting to see what the SLT's successor will be.

It's perfect for cold winter nights and brief suckerholes, when I want to see as much as I can in a short time.

I use mine with small refractors, which require little cool-down. Their wide FOV is also very forgiving of slight GoTo inaccuracies, especially when compared to a Mak.

A quick 1-star alignment on a bright star in the region of interest, and I'm off to the races. A couple of nights ago, I knocked off 12 or 13 objects in an hour and a half, including M78 and the Flame Nebula, and most of that time was spent with my eye at the glass or swapping out EPs/ barlow. I don't know of any other mount at this price point that will enable me to do that.

A fan,
David

#5 Smittty692k4

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:46 AM

Love the SLT with my ST80. Like David said, very forgiving. Mine has always had great gotos for a good price.

#6 makipper1

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 11:07 AM

Yes, David, I know you are a fan. I mean to experiment with the SV90, as I said, and if it is too annoying I will try the Nexstar mount, though that is much heavier. My question: have you tried adding a barbell weight or something to the ep tray? I suppose one could pour sand in the legs, but I doubt they are sealed; what a mess that would make!

#7 core

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 01:38 PM

From another data point, I had gone thru two ETX-90's that had quite a bit of mechanical AZ slop and lots of backlash that I needed to calibrate out; comparatively when I got a GT mount (lower priced SLT with external battery pack, no AUX port or power switch), put a C90 on it and from out of the box it worked flawlessly with 2-star alignment. I also have a 6/8SE mount that had an issue with backlash adjustments, and from a sound perspective, the GT/SLT has the smoothest of the three.

#8 Widespread

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 04:33 PM

Hi Mark,

I have considered hanging one of my leg weights (or my Powertank) from the tray, but haven't tried it yet. So far I've used my SLT/SVR90T combo only on my 2F deck, with the legs extended just enough that I can view zenith with my butt on the deck (actually a thermal foam cushon inside a dog bed cover) and my back straight. This keeps the tripod as stable as possible, and minimizes deck vibration effects. For lower-altitude (higher eye position) viewing, I use my observing chair.

This has worked very well for low and medium magnifications with my SVR90T. I do get deck vibrations at high magnifications, even when I am not touching the scope. That's one reason I haven't bothered to attach a weight while viewing from the deck. I need to evaluate high-mag performance on solid ground. I own an 8SE, which has a slightly undermounted OTA, and I'm used to viewing without touching my scope, so I don't expect problems at high mag.

BTW, I use an older version Starizona Power Pack that I picked up on A-mart for $50. It's makes for a nice light grab-n-go setup.

Best,
David

#9 makipper1

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 05:33 PM

That Starizona power pack is still made: pricey at $129. But the new version is touted as "half the weight" of the old one: which rather defeats the purpose of it as a weight! :)

#10 cn register 5

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:44 AM

This rumour that the SLT is being discontinued is NOT TRUE.

I asked my contact in Celestron and he was unequivocal "There is no truth to that rumor. No way are we discontinuing that mount".

Chris

#11 StarStuff1

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 06:24 AM

About 3 years ago I purchased a 130 SLT new. The first thing I noticed was the flimsiness of the legs so I re-purposed some oak tripod legs made years earlier. Then I was not happy with the limitations for zenith viewing so I made a little change to the mount base. Other than the cheesy plastic focuser it is a decent scope and a very user friendly mount that is sturdy but still not too heavy or bulky. I made red oak dovetails and use several other small OTAs with this mount. I like it!

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#12 Widespread

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 09:26 AM

Starstuff, that's pretty cool; you kept the mount bottom portion that usually stays attached to the tripod.

I can't believe I didn't think of that: I'm going to look at whether my wooden tripod legs will fit the mount attachment points. The aluminum legs are nice and light, but the wood is much more stable.

I don't imagine that I'll have zenith interference issues with my 90mm refractor on the wooden tripod, but could you please give a little more detail on your mount base modification?

This rumour that the SLT is being discontinued is NOT TRUE.

I asked my contact in Celestron and he was unequivocal "There is no truth to that rumor. No way are we discontinuing that mount".

Chris


Thanks for the information, Chris.

Best,
David

#13 Starhawk

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 09:58 AM

My daughter has been enjoying playing with hers, which performs quite well with a C80ED attached. The only question I have is how I can get a mini-pier set up for it (I'll have to see if Don Rothman has a tripod head).

-Rich

#14 makipper1

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 10:21 AM

If my information was incorrect, I am sorry. But it did come direct in the quoted e-mail from Customer Service at Celestron. Also, the mount has disappeared from many vendors. Still, perhaps this is a mis-communication. It would be nice to hear from someone with direct knowledge, a vendor maybe, to explain the discrepancies.

#15 Chucky

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 12:48 PM

Does anyone know of a source for wooden legs that will fit the SLT? Hands on Optics told me today that their replacement legs will not work.

#16 wcstarguy

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 01:55 AM

I have a set of those Hands on Optics legs and they look as if they will fit. I used them on an older Meade DS mount and they fit fine with the addition of three little wooden spacers I made. I just ordered one of the on sale SkyProdigy 70 scopes which use the same tripod....I'll find out next week if the wooden legs fit or not...WC

I would also be interested in more detailed directions/pics on how the pier modification was made....thanks

#17 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 06:59 AM

Does anyone know of a source for wooden legs that will fit the SLT? Hands on Optics told me today that their replacement legs will not work.


I think the Hands on Optics wooden legs can work. I replaced the legs on an SLT mount with the legs from a Vixen Portamount and that made a real difference.

I still have the SLT legs out in the garage. I looked at them carefully and looked at the Hands on Optics wooden legs on my Portamount. I see two issues, both are easily resolved.

- The SLT mount uses small bolts to clamp the legs to the hub, they are too small. The hub flange just needs to be drilled out. I am quite sure I did this with my SLT.

- The SLT Flanges are about 1.27" wide, the Hands on Optics legs have spacer blocks close to the end and the spacing of the Portamount seems to be about 1.35", my gut feeling is that it's too much to make up without spacers. But 5/16" fender washers are about 0.050" thick and a pair would make good spacers. Again, I must have this when I mated the Portamount legs to the SLT mount.

I think it's doable.

Jon

#18 wcstarguy

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Posted 20 February 2013 - 11:24 PM

Received the SkyProdigy mount today and after a quick look the spacing on its hub flange is 1.25". My Hands On Optics wood legs look to be 1.25" also, so in my situation I can just drill out the three holes on the SkyProdigy hub flange so the larger diameter(and longer) HO Optics leg bolts will fit. My SkyProdigy mount with the wood legs should be more stable. Thanks for the help Jon.

#19 Kon Dealer

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 08:28 AM

I use the Skywatcher version of the SLT mount.
I think it is more useful than the SLT because it has a standard Vixen style mounting clamp.
It was a shaky old thing when purchased, but judicious tightening of screws and locktite glue here and there sorted most issues. I now put a 6kg battery (used to power mount as well) on the leg tray and it is solid enough for my 102ED.
Accuracy and tracking are now very good indeed.
Can't ask more from a really cheap mount than packs up small and travels well :)

#20 Kon Dealer

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 08:28 AM

I use the Skywatcher version of the SLT mount.
I think it is more useful than the SLT because it has a standard Vixen style mounting clamp.
It was a shaky old thing when purchased, but judicious tightening of screws and locktite glue here and there sorted most issues. I now put a 6kg battery (used to power mount as well) on the leg tray and it is solid enough for my 102ED.
Accuracy and tracking are now very good indeed.
Can't ask more from a really cheap mount than packs up small and travels well :)






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