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Is it posible to turn a tripod into a GoTo?

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#1 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 11:57 AM

Hey guys. As the title says, I'm wondering if I could turn my manual tripod into a goto. I been looking to buy a goto but have noticed that they are very expensive. Yesterday however I noticed that on of the most expensive parts where the tripod. So, since I already have a tripod, would it be possible to just buy parts of the goto and install them on my tripod? Thanks.

#2 mmalik

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 12:15 PM

No and not worth it!


ZEQ25... should be affordable at $799? Regards

#3 ylem

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 12:38 PM

The Clestron cg5 can be picked up used for a steal on the used market and there are plenty of parts and support for it, probably the best mount in its class.

There are push to systems available for most mounts but for some reason are quite pricey. What ota do you have and what is your current mount?
I was able to upgrade my Orion SVP., but was 450 bucks.

Other cheaper options are to use a smart phone attached to the ota, some members of my club have playing around with that.

#4 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 01:57 PM

The Clestron cg5 can be picked up used for a steal on the used market and there are plenty of parts and support for it, probably the best mount in its class.

There are push to systems available for most mounts but for some reason are quite pricey. What ota do you have and what is your current mount?
I was able to upgrade my Orion SVP., but was 450 bucks.

Other cheaper options are to use a smart phone attached to the ota, some members of my club have playing around with that.


What's ota? My current mount is an azimuth mount.

#5 Starhawk

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 02:19 PM

What are you using or doing? A Celestron NexStar SLT is pretty cheap and is GOTO.

-Rich

#6 MrJim

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 03:33 PM

[/quote]

What's ota? My current mount is an azimuth mount. [/quote]

The ota is the Optical Tube Assembly. It is difficult to provide help unless we know the make and model of your scope and mount.

#7 EFT

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 03:51 PM

A tripod is only something that a mount sits on. A tripod can't be turned into anything else. You need to have a mount to have goto. Do you have a mount or simply a telescope mounted on a tripod?

#8 Geo.

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 09:51 PM

Can it be done, sure. I depends on what mount you have, how handy you are and what tools and work area you have. Will you save any money, probably not. But working through the problems of doing it will give a much better understanding of how robotic mounts work, maybe learn a little electronics and maybe some programming skills that you won't get from plunking down $700.

The Yahoo Roboscope group will show you how to take an inexpensive CG-5 or other mount and turn it into a goto mount with Meade parts. roboscope-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

No disrespect, but you have a Hispanic surname. If your Spanish is good check out the PICgoto group on Yahoo Espana (picgotogroup-subscribe@yahoogroups.com). These people do DIY goto and even build their own mounts. Some time on these forums will help you decide if this aspect of the hobby interests you.

Photo of CG-5 beng converted to operate with cheap Meade DS2000 drives. ¡Buena suerte!

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#9 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 10:50 PM

Well I have the telescope directly attached to the tripod through an azimuth mount. The tripod I have is this one (http://www.vivitar.c...ds/125/vpt-2457) and the telescope I have is this one (http://www.telescope...21/p/102016.uts)

#10 Eddgie

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Posted 19 April 2014 - 11:03 PM

Sorry Adrian, but you can't turn this mount into Go-to.

Your best bet is to just buy a mount that already has Go-To.

For a small telescope like yours, you could use a iOptron Cube, or an iOptron SmartEQ.

Either of these would work great for your scope.

Ioptron Cube

SmartEQ

I have the SmartEQ. Very light, and will run for hours on a set of rechargeable AA batteries.

But the Cube will likely work just as well.

#11 calypsob

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 03:24 AM

Adrian, you can pick up an alt/az goto and controller on ebay for cheap! Here is a link nexstar goto and mount

#12 ylem

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:53 AM

Sorry Adrian, but you can't turn this mount into Go-to.

Your best bet is to just buy a mount that already has Go-To.

For a small telescope like yours, you could use a iOptron Cube, or an iOptron SmartEQ.

Either of these would work great for your scope.

Ioptron Cube

SmartEQ

I have the SmartEQ. Very light, and will run for hours on a set of rechargeable AA batteries.

But the Cube will likely work just as well.


That cube is sweeet :)

#13 DocFinance

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:21 AM

I can recommend the nexstar on fleabay. It's not that hard to adapt to a tripod, and you'll need a battery case or power cord.

#14 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 11:26 AM

Adrian, you can pick up an alt/az goto and controller on ebay for cheap! Here is a link nexstar goto and mount

This is perfect. Just what I've been looking for.

I can recommend the nexstar on ebay. It's not that hard to adapt to a tripod, and you'll need a battery case or power cord.

Is this the battery case for it?

#15 orion61

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Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:10 PM

Hey guys. As the title says, I'm wondering if I could turn my manual tripod into a goto. I been looking to buy a goto but have noticed that they are very expensive. Yesterday however I noticed that on of the most expensive parts where the tripod. So, since I already have a tripod, would it be possible to just buy parts of the goto and install them on my tripod? Thanks.

I have a Celestron NexStar SLT Go To for $150.00
I fit it right on my Bogan tripod easily, just pull the Pan Head off.
PM me interested..

#16 Geo.

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 08:53 AM

I can recommend the nexstar on fleabay. It's not that hard to adapt to a tripod, and you'll need a battery case or power cord.


The tripod hubs have been showing up too. The newer GTs use the 6" hub as they have a larger Az gear. You don't really want the rest of the tripod anyway. Get some wood legs instead.

#17 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 11:54 AM

I can recommend the nexstar on fleabay. It's not that hard to adapt to a tripod, and you'll need a battery case or power cord.


The tripod hubs have been showing up too. The newer GTs use the 6" hub as they have a larger Az gear. You don't really want the rest of the tripod anyway. Get some wood legs instead.

So wait, I need the hub for it to work?

#18 orion61

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 06:42 PM

There is a mounting bolt on the bottom of the SLT, OR you can use the hub with your own tripod legs.

#19 Adrian Ruiz

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 06:56 PM

There is a mounting bolt on the bottom of the SLT, OR you can use the hub with your own tripod legs.

Oh ok so the hub isnt required. Its just that my tripods legs can't be seperated easily so I prefer not to break them off. So... If I get this and this, would I need anything else to make my tripod goto?

#20 DocFinance

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 12:05 AM

Adrian, you can pick up an alt/az goto and controller on ebay for cheap! Here is a link nexstar goto and mount

This is perfect. Just what I've been looking for.

I can recommend the nexstar on ebay. It's not that hard to adapt to a tripod, and you'll need a battery case or power cord.

Is this the battery case for it?


Yes, that looks like the right battery case, but you can probably get one at a surplus store cheaper. The Nexstar site isn't being updated, but it's a great resource. It will tell you the number of batteries, voltage, tip polarity, etc. as well as how to use your mount.

#21 Rich V.

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 02:00 PM

There is a mounting bolt on the bottom of the SLT, OR you can use the hub with your own tripod legs.

Oh ok so the hub isnt required. Its just that my tripods legs can't be seperated easily so I prefer not to break them off. So... If I get this and this, would I need anything else to make my tripod goto?


Your light photo tripod's specs show it's rated for only 6 lbs. It only weighs less than 2 lbs. itself! That's awfully light even for a pair of binoculars, much less a telescope on a goto mount. You'll have to remove the pan/tilt head and then attach some kind of adapter (or "hub" so to speak) to the tripod to mount the Nexstar mount onto it. The tripod likely only has a 1/4"-20 stud on it for mounting purposes. I wouldn't recommend it.

If you can find a similar used alt/az goto mount that also includes the proper tripod legs, it will be much better for you. Save your photo tripod for use with a small camera that it's designed for.

Rich

#22 Starhawk

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 02:57 PM

Really, just look at getting a complete mount- it will come with a sufficient tripod and you'll be in business.

-Rich

#23 orion61

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Posted 22 April 2014 - 05:58 PM

The tripod from a stock SLT is too flimsy for anything but a C90. That is my advice. I had a 127 mak on mine and unless you kept the legs short and sat on the ground the vibration time was about 7 seconds!! Virtually impossible to even focus it!
I found a Meade tripod from a 90mm refractor, that settled about 3 seconds with the legs about 1/2 way out. MUCH better!
That was a very good Grab and Go setup! Splendid Planetary
Lunar and Double Star scope. It was also excellent for
Globulars and brightest DSO's.

#24 Geo.

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Posted 24 April 2014 - 10:22 AM

You need a power supply with a M coaxial power plug (5.5/2.2 mm). It can be mains power (AC 120) or a battery pack. Don't pay $10 for the pack, that's realy too high. I'm falling over them. I'll send you one for the postage.

I would go the $15 for the tripod hub if you don't have another suitable tripod. You can make some simple legs like this Vixen Polaris type from oak stair tread. Add a chain or tray spreader and it will be very stable.

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