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DSLR piggyback mount mod or suggestion

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#1 Monadnock

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 07:59 PM

Hi, Folks

I have a the Celestron 93609 piggyback mount on my scope. I ran into a few unforseen issues with it pertaining to repetition of camera alignment as well as the OTA being in the shots. I kind of expected to have the OTA issue but never thought about needing to remove the camera for batt changes and photo uploading and the alignment issues that would cause. The Alt is quite repeatable, maybe I just got lucky, but I have to mess around with the Az every time.

I realize this is the nature of the beast with this mount and I should've done more research. Anyway, is there a piece I could place between this mount and the camera that would give me a repeatable quick release action?...without breaking the bank? I'd rather not have to take the top rail and mount route but I have a hunch I'm gonna have to.

Any suggestions?

ETA- At the very least, I'd like to eliminate the OTA in the FOV issue, without simply cropping it out. My first thought is shimming the front mount screw (on the OTA) but that seems kinda hokey. I guess it could work though.

#2 Mike Lynch

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 08:59 PM

How about a camera quick-release plate and adaptor for attaching the camera to your piggyback mount?

Look at one of the online camera stores and search for quick-release adapter.

There are various types, including just the adaptor with a lever for securing the plate, (which is attached to the bottom of the camera) AND the version which includes a ball-head with the quick-release adaptor and plate. This allows you to aim the camera where you want to.

But I'd have to wonder if the latter choice would be too heavy and ungainly for the scope and piggyback mount.

Hope this may help!

Mike Lynch
Frankfort KY USA

#3 guangtou

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 09:09 PM

I have used the ballhead on top of the piggyback mount before. It's fine if you have counterweights.

ADM has this kit

http://admaccessorie...a_Mount_Kit.htm


#4 Monadnock

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 10:07 PM

Thanks, Mike and guangtou.

Mike, at this point, I'm leaning towards your suggestion. However, the problem I'm finding with the models I've looked at so far is they all seem to be designed for a standard photographic tripod base. Some of the reviews I've read on various adapters indicate the underside of the quick connect lever protrudes past the plane of the base causing some users to have issues with it laying flat on the tripod base. It appears if this base is not too large, the protrusion clears by, in effect, hanging over the edge of the base. I'm not sure I'm explaining myself well here. I suppose the Celestron mount could be trimmed if necessary, but I'd rather not.

I may just gamble and order one as it would likely yield more than adequate alignment repeatability.

Aside from exploring the ball head route, what do you guys think of shimming the piggyback mount away from the OTA a bit to clear it from the FOV? Maybe a few small washers will do the trick?

#5 Monadnock

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Posted 20 June 2013 - 11:16 PM

Ended up ordering THIS Should do the trick. May have to break out the dremel though. Shimming the Celestron mount at the base is no longer an option. Way too mickey mouse for me. I'll figure something out.

#6 Tom and Beth

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 12:05 AM

Something else you might consider is an AC adapter that replaces the battery.

In your later post it looks like you bought a quick release for your camera, which will also help. Perhaps it will lift the camera enough your scope isn't in the picture?

BTW, Losmandy Sliding Camera Mount for C-8

THAT would take the scope out of the picture, but introduce balance issues.

#7 Falcon-

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 01:26 AM

Here is another idea - get a battery grip!

That will rase the camera up by a bit over an inch (solving OTA in view problem for some lenses) and batteries are changed out the side instead of the bottom so changing batteries need not alter your camera's position. Also two batteries will last longer then one....

You can also get battery grips with built in interval timer remotes. That may prove handy at some point too. I got one of those for my 1000D from here. Can't say it is the highest quality build in the world but it meets the "good enough" test!

#8 Monadnock

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 09:01 AM

Thanks, guys n gals. I like the battery grip solution, particularly for the additional battery capacity. The rail/mount solution would also work well, but like you mentioned, would introduce balance issues...another $110 to remedy :( As it sits, my scope with the camera up top, and a 2" diag and eyepiece, I have fairly good balance.

Hopefully the quick release base works out. It'll certainly help with the OTA obstruction issue.

Trying to find a more inexpensive route to tackle AP issues is difficult! It's like there's a small black hole on the OTA whose gravity is so strong, not even money can escape.

#9 Maverick199

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 09:40 AM

For long duration imaging, you obviously wouldn't be viewing the object whilst piggy backing or what? Why not get yourself an adapter to seat the camera on your mount itself. This may perhaps be less expensive than adding all those accessories not to mention balance issues.

#10 Monadnock

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Posted 21 June 2013 - 03:56 PM

For long duration imaging, you obviously wouldn't be viewing the object whilst piggy backing or what? Why not get yourself an adapter to seat the camera on your mount itself. This may perhaps be less expensive than adding all those accessories not to mention balance issues.


If I'm understanding your post correctly, I think that's what I ordered. It's coming via "snail mail" so it may be a while before I report back with the results.

#11 Falcon-

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 01:58 AM

Mike: I think what Maverick is talking about is total removal of the scope and using just the DSLR on the mount directly. This makes sense (I do it all the time) with EQ mounts but with a CPC not so much. The pigyback bracket or rail on scope methods are certainly the way to go for wide-field imaging with your CPC mount :)

#12 Monadnock

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 08:36 AM

Ahh, thanks, Falcon. Ya, the CPC mount isn't going to allow that. In hindsight, I should've waited til the funds were available for a proper rail setup. If I can't get the quick release adapter to work, I may end up going that way...and learning the lesson of 'do it right the first time'. :o That's something I generally do everywhere else in life but this hobby makes you do funny things :smirk:

#13 Maverick199

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 10:05 AM

Indeed and thanks for clarifying Falcon. I didn't realize about the CPC though.

#14 fishonkevin

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 01:26 PM

Mike, here is something that you may consider. It is a Bogen/Manfrotto Monopod head that will screw right on to your existing piggy-back mout. It should raise your camera @2", so eliminating the OTA from you picture.

Link

#15 Monadnock

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 06:53 PM

Kevin, thanks for the heads up and link on that product. I like that a lot. If my el cheapo $11 quick release doesn't give me the necessary OTA clearance, I'll pick one of those up. I really like the fact the camera can pivot vertically.

Credit to Mike Lynch as well, as he recommended the same style unit earlier in the thread. Wasn't sure exactly what I was looking for so the link helped greatly.

#16 Mike Lynch

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 07:09 PM

Mike,

Thanks. One way or another, I hope you find a good solution to the camera mount issue!

#17 Monadnock

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 08:53 PM

Thanks, Mike.

I went ahead and ordered the Manfrotto part. It'll take care of ALL my concerns while also maintaining the balance of my scope...and also no trimming of the Celestron piggyback mount to clear the locking lever! Fortunately, the original part that's on its way was cheap. My buddy is into photography so I can gift it to him.

Thanks for all the help, guys n gals. I'll let you know how it works out.

#18 Monadnock

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Posted 26 June 2013 - 09:25 PM

Excellent. Doesn't look like the weather is gonna cooperate anytime soon, but it looks cool :cool:

Thanks again for all the suggestions.

Attached Files



#19 fishonkevin

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 09:37 AM

Mike,
I think that you'll find that the monopod head is very versatile. By rotating the head 90* so that the tightening nob is in the back, and re-adjusting the camera on the plate, you can rotate the camera body from side-to-side. This way you will be able to get different camera angles/FOV for better framing of objects.

#20 Tom and Beth

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 11:37 AM

Glad to see you're on the way. That quick release is a good choice.

BTW, should you be interested, Manfrotto makes a few other heads that takes that plate you screwed onto the camera, which might be of interest to you if you want to shoot daytime pics with a tripod, or window mount, or something on your porch.

#21 Monadnock

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 04:22 PM

Mike,
I think that you'll find that the monopod head is very versatile. By rotating the head 90* so that the tightening nob is in the back, and re-adjusting the camera on the plate, you can rotate the camera body from side-to-side. This way you will be able to get different camera angles/FOV for better framing of objects.


Yep, I agree. The safety lock feature is very nice as well. I'm thoroughly going to enjoy it...when it stops raining.

#22 Monadnock

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 04:33 PM

Glad to see you're on the way. That quick release is a good choice.

BTW, should you be interested, Manfrotto makes a few other heads that takes that plate you screwed onto the camera, which might be of interest to you if you want to shoot daytime pics with a tripod, or window mount, or something on your porch.


Thanks, Tom and Beth. I have an el cheapo Slik brand tripod that has a quick release setup on it, though it's plastic. I'm going to see if I can swap out the lower plate on the Slik tripod with the original product I ordered, which is metal. From what I understand, it's a copy of the Manfrotto equivalent. If that's the case, the shoe that came with the ball head unit should work nicely with the Chinese copy.

I'll add, if anyone is looking for a quick release plate, it (the one I have the link to in an earlier post) seems very well constructed. Great reviews as well. The quality appears to be on par with the Manfrotto.

#23 Tom and Beth

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Posted 27 June 2013 - 08:58 PM

Many if not most have the tripod head attached via a 3/8 inch screw. You may have to turn your tripod upside down to loosen three grub screws that secure the tripod head.

Don't mind me, BTW. I'm one of those OCD nitwits who finds a common way to attach things on everything I own.






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