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Discmount & Berlebach Planet for 4 inch refractor

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#1 chaoscosmos

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 06:29 PM

Hey all,

I have a TV 101 scope now mounted on an early version Gibraltar mount and tripod. It seems fairly solid, but azimuth is a bit sticky, so I've considered getting the upgraded Gibraltar (latest version) mount from Televue.
On the other hand, I wonder if going all in with a Discmount and Berlebach Planet tripod would make a significant difference from the Gibraltar set-up. I guess my main question is, (having probably read enough about the Discmount)- Would the Berlebach Planet be overkill for the TV 101? There wouldn't be much added weight to the OTA other than the heavier TV eyepieces. Total for the scope maybe 15 lbs at most.

Thanks...

#2 M13 Observer

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 07:05 PM

Hey all,

I have a TV 101 scope now mounted on an early version Gibraltar mount and tripod. It seems fairly solid, but azimuth is a bit sticky, so I've considered getting the upgraded Gibraltar (latest version) mount from Televue.
On the other hand, I wonder if going all in with a Discmount and Berlebach Planet tripod would make a significant difference from the Gibraltar set-up. I guess my main question is, (having probably read enough about the Discmount)- Would the Berlebach Planet be overkill for the TV 101? There wouldn't be much added weight to the OTA other than the heavier TV eyepieces. Total for the scope maybe 15 lbs at most.

Thanks...


The Planet is a nice tripod but overkill for this size of scope. If you want to stay with Berlebach, one of the UNI's is perfectly suitable. I don't know what the price differential is these days though, so maybe the Planet would be a better buy, especially if you were planning to up-size down the road.

#3 johnnyha

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 08:17 PM

Definitely extreme overkill, I get less than 1 second damping with my f8 FS152.

If your only problem is sticky az, simply take the head apart and clean it, believe me it works wonders. If you got a Planet/DM setup you would probably miss the lighter weight of your current mount.

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#4 lakeorion

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 09:53 PM

Bah humbug. Berlebach just costs more. Try a CST Berger 60-RT20WDF for $180. Tripod overkill for darn near anything.

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#5 chaoscosmos

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Posted 16 March 2013 - 11:10 PM

Well, as far as the azimuth movement on the Gibraltar, I've now tried three things. Silicone spray (as the Televue rep suggested), cleaning, and finally, applying a chap stick coat to the shaft. There's some indication the Chap Stick made things smoother, but I'm only able to do a dry run indoors now, seeing that there's a marine layer overhead the past few nights.
If that isn't sufficient, I'll probably try the Gibraltar upgrade. That fails, then it would be Discmount with a Berlebach Uni. I don't see the CST Berger that Dana suggests available anywhere.

#6 JMW

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 12:36 AM

I have a DM6 with 12 inch Losmandy extension on a Planet. It is great for my TEC 140 or my SV115T. It can handle my C11 EdgeHD just fine. I trust it to handle high winds or public outreach. I think a DM4 could handle your setup on a lighter tripod. I use my SV115T on a Gitzo 5541LS when I want a very light travel setup. It is light enough to pick up the scope, mount and tripod when I want to move it around to avoid trees. The 5541LS is very steady with very low damping times but a wooden tripod would have a lower center of gravity and be more immune to being knocked over.

#7 Jim7728

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 06:10 AM

I had a little stick-tion going on with the altitude bearings of my TV Gibraltar-5, but took apart the bearings and applied a little teflon based grease which solved the problem.

A DM-6 with Planet tripod would be over-kill unless one plans to upgrade to a larger ota. A DM-4 with a 8" extension will be fine but is almost as an expensive setup.

A few less expensive alternatives would be a Gibraltar-5 head(larger bearings), Universal Astronomics Unistar Deluxe(long, solid altitude arm for easier zenith views as well as smooth motions) or a Stellarview M-2 with extension piller( poor mans DM-4)among other options out there.

#8 tomcody

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 09:17 AM

I use a DM6 with a 12" Losmandy extension & Losmandy MA tripod adapter on a Meade field tripod with my 4" scopes.
The advantages:
1.very steady with almost instant damping times.
2. able to hold balance when removing Ethos eyepieces, no scope flipping from unbalanced condition.
3. Plenty of room to upgrade scope.
4. clearance between scope and tripod
5. easy to move and setup in pieces, the tripod is the heaviest part.
The disadvantages:
1. none
If I had one suggestion, it would be to use the DM6 with a 12" Losmandy extension and the Losmandy HD tripod, it is a cleaner setup and the HD tripod breaks down into four parts at about 9 lbs each for transport.
Rex

#9 woodworkt

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Posted 17 March 2013 - 12:56 PM

The Planet would be overkill (both more expensive and heavier than you need to port around) for that scope. The UNI-24, however, does nicely for the DM-4 with the DM-4's column extension, and it's substantially lighter. It's worth it to get the spreader and the accessory tray, they seem to make it pretty rigid and you can avoid the default chains.

#10 chaoscosmos

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 03:06 AM

It looks like the Uni 14 is all I would need, reaching a max height of 52 inches, more than I'll probably need. I generally leave my Gibraltar at about 47 inches height now.

Edit: Or maybe the DM-6 could use the Gibraltar ash tripod? I'll check on that.

#11 ASTERON

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 11:56 AM

Not to HiJack the OP's thread but I wonder if the DM6 on a Rob Miller TRI36H or TRI36M will be sturdy enough to carry my 12" LX200R ( about 50 Pound OTA + LOSMANDY Dovetail, Moonlight Focuser Diagonal and a hefty Eyepiece).
I wonder if anyone tried a combo like this ?
Strictly Visual (of Course).

#12 JMW

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 03:45 PM

I have the TRI36M and I am sure that it would handle a 12 inch SCT. My TRI36M holds my AP900GTO mount with a variety of scopes including my C11 EdgeHD with a piggy backed refractor when doing imaging. The TRI36M is steadier than the Planet.

Unless you can find a Rob Miller tripod used you will be in for a long wait. It appears Rob has changed his focus to another project and hasn't advertised his tripods in many months.

#13 ASTERON

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 04:32 AM

Hi Jeff,
Thanks for the information.
I know Rob is not currently producing tripods but he gave me reasons to believe he may make and sell them again later this year. If you know something specific that I am not aware of, please let me know if you can publicly share whatever information you have from Rob.

BTW - I am getting impatient , so I am indeed interested in any Used Rob Miller Tripod available for Sale, so if you or anybody else know about such an available used Rob Miller Tripod, I am definitely interested !

Thanks

#14 JMW

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 09:42 PM

No. I don't have any direct info. I notice that Rob Miller has not advertised his TRI36(L|M|H) tripods on Astromart in a long time so I suspect he is not currently making them. Others have mentioned that Rob hasn't been timely on responding to inquiries. For these reasons I figured Rob is focusing his time on something other than TRI36 tripods.






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