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Unexpected Tenant: Atlas AZ/EQ-G arrives

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#1 BKBrown

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 05:12 PM

This is the year I want to complete my "Away" rig, and I have been researching mounts to support both imaging and purely visual work. The folks at Hands On Optics e-mailed to tell me that they would (unexpectedly in view of an earlier Orion announcement) be getting an Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G in shortly. So, despite having a T-Rex Apex on order (already paid for and due here on Friday) I ended up trading in my field Atlas and some other gear for the new model. My intention has been to acquire two heavy mounts for field use: one for imaging, the other for visual while the pix are being acquired. While I hadn't planned to replace my trusty Astrotroniks tuned Atlas this soon, the opportunity arose and I jumped on it. In the coming weeks I should be able to do some comparison testing of these two mounts which I will share here. For now, here are some pix. The first is my TEC 140 riding in the saddle with the mount secure atop a Losmandy HD tripod...

Clear Skies,
Brian

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#2 BKBrown

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 05:13 PM

Next is a shot of the Optical Supports adapter connecting the mount to the tripod...

Clear Skies,
Brian

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#3 BKBrown

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 05:17 PM

And finally, here is a shot of one of my favorite new features: the very secure, screw in power receptacle...no more accidentally pulling out the power cord in the dark! I will provide updates and field comparisons of the alt-az performance of the new Atlas and my T-Rex (patience please, the weather here is fickle :grin:) in the upcoming months.

Clear Skies,
Brian

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#4 rmollise

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 05:23 PM

Sweet.

#5 Mike X.

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 05:25 PM

Very nice! Congrats on the new mount :)

#6 BKBrown

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 07:36 PM

Thanks Uncle Rod and Mike! I'm looking forward to a star party weekend and will give it a good shakedown. More later...

Clear Skies,
Brian

#7 Bluejay08

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 09:22 PM

great mount!

Jay

#8 rigel123

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 09:37 PM

And finally, here is a shot of one of my favorite new features: the very secure, screw in power receptacle...no more accidentally pulling out the power cord in the dark! I will provide updates and field comparisons of the alt-az performance of the new Atlas and my T-Rex (patience please, the weather here is fickle :grin:) in the upcoming months.

Clear Skies,
Brian


That screw-in power receptacle was the first thing that caught my eye (although I haven't had my plug pop out of my Atlas yet) and the second thing was the beefy CW bar. Can't wait to hear how it performs!

#9 10gauge

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 09:59 PM

Congratulations, Brian! Hope you get to test it soon...

#10 timmbottoni

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 11:05 PM

Congrats - that is a beautiful setup!

Timm

#11 JMW

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 12:05 AM

The setup looks nice. Has the Altitude adjustment method been improved over the original Altas?

#12 frolinmod

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:36 AM

Yes, the altitude adjustment is very much improved over the original Atlas / EQ6.

#13 Mike X.

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 03:11 AM

I tried it 2 weeks ago on a demo SW mount, it is a great improvement over the classic adjustment!..although i think the CGEM one is still a litle smoother and "lighter" in the touch.
Probably just a litle bit of lubricant can make it even better. I like it.

#14 David Pavlich

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 08:55 AM

Really nice mount! The threaded power cable is great, but if you do the same thing and trip over it, instead of coming unplugged, the wires can be ripped from the plug. :p My cure is to loop the wires (power cable, dew heater) through the ep holder (CG5). Very little chance of pulling hard enough to unplug the cable.

David

#15 BKBrown

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 10:36 AM

Thanks gang :grin: There are several solid improvements I can see, I'll test them out hard this weekend.

Jeff - the altitude adjustment is significantly better and uses a beefy offset elevation screw you can just see off to the side in the first image. When not in use the bar can be hidden out of the way inside the assembly, at least in alt-az mode.
David - I tend to do my cables the way you suggest out in the field, running them through the eyepiece tray and down to my power box between the tripod legs.
On another note, the manual is pretty well written, and I suggest folks follow it carefully. For operations like changing from equatorial to alt-az mode there are steps explicitly laid out in the instructions that you need to follow to avoid damaging the mount :shocked:...just do it the way they say.
No doubt I'll have more info after this weekend; can't wait to get this rig out under the stars :choochoo:

Clear Skies,
Brian

#16 CounterWeight

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 01:35 PM

This is great Brian - looking forward to your experience / thoughts - thanks!






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