Jump to content


Photo

Overload result on ZEQ25GT, 60 + pounds.

  • Please log in to reply
39 replies to this topic

#26 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 04 June 2013 - 08:59 PM

For the comments referring to the TDM on the iEQ45, it definitely does turn it into an observatory class mount as far as tracking. Only a encoder on the RA axis, autoguiding handles DEC variation.

for Paul:
Posted Image
PecPrepRA_032613_iEQ45wTDM by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

for Edmond: yes, definitely worth every cent, especially if you have to track at long focal lengths.

So Paul ... hypothetical situation.

Someone steals your iEQ45 and your ZEQ25. You need an imaging mount and you have about 35 pounds of gear all in. You want to be able to image with a variety of scopes including long-ish focal lengths like a C8. I offer to give you, free of charge (so price is not a consideration), either an IEQ45 (no encoders) or a ZEQ25. Knowing what you now know about the ability to overload the ZEQ25, which one do you take as your only mount going forward and why?

Now you're making it tough, but I would have to sell the AT10RC, buy a AT8RC and do all my imaging off a new ZEQ25GT.

Why? It can handle a 8" carbon fiber nicely, I can pick up the entire mount, including one counterweight and carry it 50 feet to my setup location. And it tracks like a dream without any additional assistance.

I would only image up to about the 20-25 pound limit though, and then I would buy the next iteration of the Z-Balanced mount for that hypothetical 35 pound payload...;)

Clear sky all...

Paul

#27 Midnight Dan

Midnight Dan

    Voyager 1

  • *****
  • Posts: 11422
  • Joined: 23 Jan 2008
  • Loc: Hilton, NY, Yellow Zone (Bortle 4.5)

Posted 05 June 2013 - 06:42 AM

Good answer ... thanks! Interesting that you'd still want to keep to the 25 pound limit despite the overload capacity.

If this mount design is so good, you gotta wonder if it will eventually replace their traditional GEM line of mounts. :thinking: Are there any downsides you can see that would make a person want to buy a traditional GEM instead?

-Dan

#28 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 05 June 2013 - 05:22 PM

If this mount design is so good, you gotta wonder if it will eventually replace their traditional GEM line of mounts. Are there any downsides you can see that would make a person want to buy a traditional GEM instead?


Dan, I think the iOptron GEM and CEM mounts will co-exist for a while yet. There are still those that are hesitant and cautious about 'change'.

Just look at WinXP vs Win7 and Win8. Even though the advantages of upgrading are well documented, some people just are comfortable with what they're familiar with.

The only downside I can think of at all, is in the 8408 hand controller, which is not as 'rich' in features as the 8407 on the GEM mounts. Of course, some software changes and an evolution in the hand controller could result in a "8409" hand controller, with a larger database, a hand controller heater, and a electronic balance routine I guess.

And a physically larger mount could result in enough room to add a RS232 port to the mount for PC control and imaging programs?

So, we all wait to see what the future has in store for iOptron's offerings, as well as all the other makers, now that the die has been cast....:) Where necessity has been called the mother of invention, it may well be that evolution and competition may be the new mother of invention.

#29 rkayakr

rkayakr

    Messenger

  • *****
  • Posts: 441
  • Joined: 27 Oct 2010
  • Loc: Northeast Ohio

Posted 05 June 2013 - 08:26 PM

Paul
Unfortunately even the 8407 is maxed out. I asked about the polar alignment error reporting after star alignment feature that was dropped in the latest firmware update and iOptron tech support said that they had to drop it due to lack of memory space.
With CPU power and memory as inexpensive as they are today, I think that they may have made an unfortunate design decision. With apps like Sky Safari and laptop programs I think that the size of the database is less important than the handbox having a rich mount feature set.
Given their good customer support perhaps, a super 8409 will drive a number of existing mounts given the proper firmware.

#30 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 05 June 2013 - 11:04 PM

Paul
Unfortunately even the 8407 is maxed out. I asked about the polar alignment error reporting after star alignment feature that was dropped in the latest firmware update and iOptron tech support said that they had to drop it due to lack of memory space.
With CPU power and memory as inexpensive as they are today, I think that they may have made an unfortunate design decision. With apps like Sky Safari and laptop programs I think that the size of the database is less important than the handbox having a rich mount feature set.
Given their good customer support perhaps, a super 8409 will drive a number of existing mounts given the proper firmware.


Good points all. I much prefer the previous Two Star align with a Polar Offset readout after.

However, one of the reasons iOptron dropped it, was because so many new users had problems wrapping their heads around it.

And also, without a properly aligned polar scope (to mount axis) and a proper mount zero position, they couldn't guarantee the results.

All that aside, if they are running out of room in the hand controller and boards, then there is always the option of installing a little 3~4" mini pier between the tripod and the mount base to house tons of electronics....?? That would also keep the electronics out of the elements.

Like, how about using a 64mb SD card in the mini pier to store all the firmware, and have it removable so you could just stick it in your PC SD port for a quick update with new firmware? Nah...that would be too easy.

Someone just needs to think 'out of the box' to solve all those issues. Imho.

Best,

Paul

#31 AcTpoHoM

AcTpoHoM

    Lift Off

  • -----
  • Posts: 12
  • Joined: 05 Aug 2012
  • Loc: Bulgaria

Posted 06 June 2013 - 09:41 AM

In my opinion the mini pier would not be even necessary. Electronics are advancing in a very fast pace and iOptron should be able to fit more memory in the existing designs (size-wise). A super 8409, as you call it, might be the best course of action and it might even drop their production costs (having in mind that they would have to produce a single hand controller, instead of 2 or 3 versions). Additionally, if it supports all of their mounts, I do believe that many of us will be wishing to purchase it separately, just for the extra features we might get.

Business logic + their apparently great attention to customer happiness (:)) say that this will probably happen :) Personally, I'm looking forward to it, ASPA is the thing I miss the most since I switched to IEQ45 (8406 controller).

#32 Edmond S.

Edmond S.

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 42
  • Joined: 05 Jul 2010

Posted 07 June 2013 - 07:55 AM

Paul,

One question regarding the design. Because of the Z design and the scope at the back of the pier/tripod, do you find that the limit is tighter for imaging pass meridian as the OTA may easily hit the tripod/pier ?

Edmond

#33 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 07 June 2013 - 09:16 AM

Paul,

One question regarding the design. Because of the Z design and the scope at the back of the pier/tripod, do you find that the limit is tighter for imaging pass meridian as the OTA may easily hit the tripod/pier ?

Edmond


Not really Edmond. In fact, because of the Z-Balanced design and the fact that the saddle is offset from the pivot point and in balance with the counterweight, there is actually more room between the camera/diagonal and the tripod at meridian. Note how far back the camera is from the center of the mount in this pic:

Posted Image
ZEQ25 imaging setup by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

Since there is so much 'cushion', I have been imaging at 70 degrees + with the mount for the first time. I wouldn't even try that with the iEQ45 until I added a 8" mini pier for clearance.

Although you can set the hand controller to 'Continue' tracking past the meridian, at some point the camera would contact a rear leg..I normally image up to the meridian and when I hear the warning beep from the controller that meridian has been reached, I let the current exposure finish up and then do a flip.

At meridian, with the AT6RC on the 1.5" tripod, there is approximately 3" of clearance between the camera and the leg.

With a smaller OTA with less length, like this 60mm setup, it could probably track through the meridian for over an hour due to the increased clearance.

Posted Image
IMG_4836 by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

Hope the info helps,

Best,

Paul

#34 txairman

txairman

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 18 Apr 2011

Posted 07 June 2013 - 11:29 AM

Would this mount be sufficient for visual with 8SE (2" diagonal and 2" eyepieces)? I'd like to give SE mount to my son's telescope and use ZEQ25 as main visual, occasional wide-field AP mount with 8SE OTA.

#35 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 07 June 2013 - 04:31 PM

Would this mount be sufficient for visual with 8SE (2" diagonal and 2" eyepieces)? I'd like to give SE mount to my son's telescope and use ZEQ25 as main visual, occasional wide-field AP mount with 8SE OTA.


I think the 8SE will weigh in around 25 pounds with a 2" diagonal and EP, so sure, that's fine for visual. You will need an additional counterweight for 25 pounds of payload.

I just received the additional counterweight, it's counterbored, so it slips over the safety stop an additional 1.5~2.0 inches for added leverage. Very nice touch.

Clear skies,

Paul

#36 txairman

txairman

    Sputnik

  • -----
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: 18 Apr 2011

Posted 07 June 2013 - 06:04 PM

I just weighed OTA with 2" accessories it was 16 lbs. So I guess it should be fine for visual.

Thanks!

I think the 8SE will weigh in around 25 pounds with a 2" diagonal and EP, so sure, that's fine for visual. You will need an additional counterweight for 25 pounds of payload.

I just received the additional counterweight, it's counterbored, so it slips over the safety stop an additional 1.5~2.0 inches for added leverage. Very nice touch.

Clear skies,

Paul



#37 Aaron Worley

Aaron Worley

    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 71
  • Joined: 21 Oct 2005

Posted 07 June 2013 - 06:22 PM

Hello,

I have a Celestron 8SE on my ZEQ25GT and I'm happy with the pair for visual use, even with heavy 2" eyepieces.

I also have a Celestron 9.25 SCT and that was pretty wobbly on this mount, it would take a long time to settle and it made focusing difficult.

Hope that helps,
Aaron

#38 rsbfoto

rsbfoto

    Messenger

  • -----
  • Posts: 448
  • Joined: 10 Jun 2006

Posted 07 June 2013 - 07:07 PM

I got the mount today at noon and it is up and running. nothing mysterious.

2 Tak scopes side by side 1x FS78 and 1x SKY90 SV side by side.

Look at the image

http://astroforo.net.../zeq25gt-01.jpg

THe counterweight is 16.5 lbs.

I am very happy with it. Having owned a Losmandy GM-8 I say tis better quality at third of the price. OK. The Gemini system is far ahead of the 8408 hand controller of the iOptron ZEQ 25GT

#39 zjc26138

zjc26138

    Loved By All

  • *****
  • Posts: 8215
  • Joined: 24 Feb 2005
  • Loc: Mingo Junction, Ohio

Posted 07 June 2013 - 07:38 PM

Beautiful setup Rainer!

#40 Astronewb

Astronewb

    Apollo

  • *****
  • Posts: 1303
  • Joined: 19 Sep 2011
  • Loc: Connecticut

Posted 07 June 2013 - 07:47 PM

I got the mount today at noon and it is up and running. nothing mysterious.

Very nice setup Rainer, make sure the tension screws are not bottomed out when tracking, otherwise, you may get a 'overcurrent' message under load.

All the way in, and backed out 2 turns is the normal starting spot.

The 8408 handset is marginal, to say the least, but it will get the job done, and is very easy to navigate.

Clear skies, looking forward to your first light experience...

Paul






Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics