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iOptrom Mini Tower Pro - your thoughts???

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#1 Lost in Space

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Posted 27 August 2013 - 11:04 PM

Hi Guys,

Does anyone have any thoughts, comments, opinions, etc. on the iOptron Mini Tower Pro? It sounds like a pretty sweet go-to mount, and it has GPS built-in. I am contemplating this for my 3" and a 5" refractors.

Heard some noise about it dinging up your dovetails, but apparently there is a "Puck" and a "Saddle" that can overcome that issue. Also saw some comments about quality issues, but those comments were 5 to 6 years old.

Can anyone help?

Thanks,
Ed
:)

#2 brokenwave

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 03:15 PM

My brother has one and is pleased with it, it tracks well, and easy is to set-up. ( I've used it a few times. A 5" refractor is a bit much for it (but ok on it), the length of the scope magnifies any play in the mount. The tripod is the weak point of the mount. It is a great grab and go mount, plus you can put 2 scopes on it. We tried it with a 102 and 127mm refractor and it took 4-5 seconds to settle with that load. I have a Meade LX80 and it took with the same scopes (2-3 seconds to settle) because it's tripod is beefier.(but the LX80 has it's own issues)

#3 Lost in Space

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 03:48 PM

Thanks Brokenwave. Does your brother's tripod have the 1½-inch, or 2-inch diameter tubular legs? Reading the iOptron website's description, they claim 33 lbs weight can be carried on one side of the mount, and 10 lbs weight can be carried on the other side with the 2-inch legs

Although... maybe it will hold that weight, but not very well... :question:

#4 biz

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 04:07 PM

Hi Guys,

Does anyone have any thoughts, comments, opinions, etc. on the iOptron Mini Tower Pro? It sounds like a pretty sweet go-to mount, and it has GPS built-in. I am contemplating this for my 3" and a 5" refractors.

Heard some noise about it dinging up your dovetails, but apparently there is a "Puck" and a "Saddle" that can overcome that issue. Also saw some comments about quality issues, but those comments were 5 to 6 years old.

Can anyone help?

Thanks,
Ed
:)

Hi Ed.
I have both the original MT and also an MTPRO.
I have no issues with any of them. The pro has the much steadier (2inch) tripod and easily carries my 120 refractor.
I've also used my 7 1/2 inch mak on it with success.
The saddle is like most others in that a single screw is used to clamp the dovetail bar. I have used a separate puck and sliding saddle which is much better and gives more support for all OTA's. I've also built a wedge which I can use on either of the mounts so basically that has turned it into a multi-mount. In Alt/Az you can also use an OTA on both sides at the same time.
All in all I have enjoyed these mounts , quick and easy to set up which suits me .
cheers
Graham.

#5 Lost in Space

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 04:26 PM

I appreciate your comments, Graham. BTW... Where did you get the "Puck" and "Saddle" that you are using? Part/model numbers would be most helpful if you have them.

#6 biz

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 05:00 PM

I appreciate your comments, Graham. BTW... Where did you get the "Puck" and "Saddle" that you are using? Part/model numbers would be most helpful if you have them.

I can't answer that on here but if you send me a private message I can help.
cheers
Graham.

#7 Astronewb

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Posted 28 August 2013 - 07:29 PM

I appreciate your comments, Graham. BTW... Where did you get the "Puck" and "Saddle" that you are using? Part/model numbers would be most helpful if you have them.


I have the MT Pro, excellent all around alt/az with great weight carrying capacity on the 2" tripod.

For non marring saddles, you can also check ADM accessories for saddles in V, D or dual configurations:

http://admaccessorie...ies_Saddles.htm

Hope it helps,

Paul

#8 brokenwave

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 11:02 AM

Unfortunately his came with the 1.5" legs, which is why it is only OK with a 127mm RF on it. I found it to be a nice versatile mount. Much, much better than a Nexstar 8 I have upgraded from.

#9 HowardK

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 11:16 AM

Its a great, simple, no fuss goto altaz mount.

Graham has some marvellous accessories......tripod spreader, height extender for long scopes, better levelling bolts.....

I found that my 4 foot 140mm refractor with binoviewer was a little too long...vibrations were objectionable at higher mags.....a 4" refractor or a 8" sct will work great...one on each side= more better

#10 Lost in Space

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 11:18 AM

Unfortunately his came with the 1.5" legs, which is why it is only OK with a 127mm RF on it. I found it to be a nice versatile mount. Much, much better than a Nexstar 8 I have upgraded from.

Thanks for checking and letting me know. This confirms that the 2" tripod should hold the weight better. :D

#11 Lost in Space

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 12:22 PM

Its a great, simple, no fuss goto altaz mount.

Graham has some marvellous accessories......tripod spreader, height extender for long scopes, better levelling bolts.....

I found that my 4 foot 140mm refractor with binoviewer was a little too long...vibrations were objectionable at higher mags.....a 4" refractor or a 8" sct will work great...one on each side= more better

I appreciate this information! I have a 127mm Explore Scientific, a Televue TV76, and a couple of other smaller refractors as well. (I like refractors, if it isn't obvious by now... ;) )

I will check and see what Graham has to offer. The 127 may benefit from a height extender.

Thanks,
Ed

#12 Lost in Space

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 12:28 PM

I have the MT Pro, excellent all around alt/az with great weight carrying capacity on the 2" tripod.

For non marring saddles, you can also check ADM accessories for saddles in V, D or dual configurations:

http://admaccessorie...ies_Saddles.htm

Hope it helps,

Paul

Paul, Thank you very much! I have checked ADM's website and see the puck and saddle that I need.
Ed :D

#13 HowardK

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Posted 29 August 2013 - 12:52 PM

Lost in Space...

I sent u a personal message

#14 Lost in Space

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Posted 31 August 2013 - 10:39 PM

Thanks everyone for your input! I just ordered an iOptron MT Pro. :cool: However, it is currently on backorder due to the sale that is currently going on. No biggie - I'm not in any rush.

If anyone is interested in buying an iOptron mount, check out their sale - it ends on 9/2/2013.

Ed






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