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Equipment Discussions >> ATM, Optics and DIY Forum

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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
The Piston AZ mount
      #3955729 - 07/31/10 04:33 PM

You can sometimes got a bright ideea right from the trash. An old engine piston, reversed, can become a great alt-azimouth mount for medium instruments like my 80x900 Fraunhofer refractor or the MTO11-CA 10x1000 maksutov teleobjective used as a small visual scope. The base is a 80x4mm textolit disk with a 10mm hole in the center and a 8 mm half-hole at the edge to prevent rotation on the tripod head, where is a cilindric head screw. The azimouth bearing are 3 teflon pads 20x8x2.5mm at 120 degree near the edge of the piston head, mounted with 3 M3 screws. A M10 screw and nuts&washers form the vertical axe:



The altitude bearing is the original bolt of the piston. The axe is a long 12 mm screw, assembled with nuts&washers. I will make an orizontal plate fixed with 2 screws instead the ones with plastic heads and a tension teflon pad, pressed with one screw, to control the altitude smooth moving and fix in the position. The instrument is fastened to the axe with a galvanised steel plate (standard for wood buildings) and some nuts and washers.



Except the teflon pads, all nuts&bolts are cheap and easy to find at local store, you need only hand tools to build this simple mount. You can put 2 instruments in parallel, replacing the counterweight with another plate.



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neo
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 02/12/08

Loc: Iasi, Romania
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3955913 - 07/31/10 06:14 PM

Great job Tavi!
I guess many of the great ideas don't come in front of the CNC machine

I believe it's much more sturdy then your first version, the pipe mount.
It's just me or it resemble with a Giro mount?


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: neo]
      #3956061 - 07/31/10 07:18 PM

Indeed, is more sturdy and smooth than the pipe mount. And is easier to built, no machined pieces, the textolit base was cut with a small handsaw and rounded with a corner grinder. The total time of build, except planning and thinking is roughly 3 hours.

Of course, it resemble a Giro mount, not so beautiful... I wonder to keep or not the black burned oil coating?


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Sean Cunneen
Let Me Think
*****

Reged: 08/01/07

Loc: Blue Island Illinois
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3957231 - 08/01/10 01:08 PM

That is great! I'll bet it took some time to get the rings to seat...

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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Sean Cunneen]
      #3957618 - 08/01/10 04:47 PM

Thanks, Sean!
I kept the rings on as it was get from the engine, maybe that car has travel more than 4-5 Equators...


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Ed Holland
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 06/16/10

Loc: San Jose, CA and Oxford, UK
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3959684 - 08/02/10 05:13 PM

I like that - very clever Tavi!

One of my telescopes has a cam sprocket counterweight. Maybe should start a car parts astronomy thread called, perhaps... Auto-star?

Edited by Ed Holland (08/02/10 05:15 PM)


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Ed Holland]
      #3959782 - 08/02/10 05:41 PM

Thanks, Ed!
A car has a lot of useful parts, but be aware: do not disassemble your own!


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Ed D
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 04/30/10

Loc: Sunny South Florida
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3959980 - 08/02/10 07:07 PM

Just when I thought I was getting old and had seen everything!!! That is a nice mount that shows a lot of imagination and skill. Very good way to recycle old aluminum.

Ed D


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neo
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 02/12/08

Loc: Iasi, Romania
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Ed Holland]
      #3960756 - 08/03/10 03:04 AM

Quote:

I like that - very clever Tavi!
Maybe should start a car parts astronomy thread called, perhaps... Auto-star?




Car tuning&telescopes


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Hitech
sage
*****

Reged: 06/03/10

Loc: NW PA.
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: neo]
      #3961627 - 08/03/10 02:19 PM

Make your next OTA from 4" diesel exhaust pipe with muffler clamps to the mounting plate.

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StarStuff1
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 04/01/07

Loc: South of the Mason-Dixon Line
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Hitech]
      #3962152 - 08/03/10 06:51 PM

If you move it too fast in any direction does it give off a little blue smoke?

Seriously, a clever and innovative idea.

Perhaps you should also post this in the Frugal Astronomer thread in the Beginners Forum.


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Scopyfrank
999 Forever
*****

Reged: 08/29/08

Loc: Luxembourg
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: StarStuff1]
      #3963245 - 08/04/10 09:48 AM

Brilliant.


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Scopyfrank]
      #3964277 - 08/04/10 06:42 PM

Thank you, friends!
I hope I could test it live soon!


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eric_zeiner
Phoenix's Dad
*****

Reged: 12/09/06

Loc: Georgia USA 34 31'57.18N 83 53...
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3964519 - 08/04/10 08:54 PM

That awesome

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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: eric_zeiner]
      #3983776 - 08/15/10 04:41 AM

At the first session of observing with the new mount, it work smoothly on the both axis, easy to find objects on the sky and easy to fix in position. The only trouble is, for the moment, to put the OTA in equilibrium at first. The mount need a better fixing system on the altitude bearing.

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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #3998719 - 08/22/10 09:17 AM

The new configuration with 2 telescopes:



In the left is my homemade Fraunhofer 80 F/11.25 refractor and in the right side is the MTO11-CA russian teleobjective modified as a visual maksutov telescope.

The mount work great, easy to position on the sky, the only problem is vibration, the orizontal axe is to thin.

Yes, the white dot near the Hyperion eyepiece is Lady Moon!


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4013466 - 08/29/10 04:07 PM

After a friend gave me two sets of tractor pistons and some time spent thinking and machining at a friend's workshop some parts, I'm building a bigger one:



This mount is more expensive than first, I had to design and made special parts: the axis, bushings, fine aligning systems... which I'm working these days. I want to use nut-screw mechanisms at both axis for this mount, cause I have no worm gears available.

It will looks like this:



The diameter of the tractor piston is 110mm, the orizontal axe is 32mm dia. by 300mm long. This mount will support two heavier instruments, maybe one of them will be a 200mm cassegrain which I want to build nextyear...


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neo
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 02/12/08

Loc: Iasi, Romania
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4014585 - 08/30/10 04:08 AM

Hi Tavi,

That's awsome!

For such a serious mount it would really be nice to fit worm gears on both axis and steppers connected to a computer and voila...go to mount
Some nice worm gears could be cut on lathe with a standard tap. Although it's not a by the book method to cut worms gears, many amateurs got very good results with a bit of patience and practice.

Check this out http://www.atmsite.org/contrib/JSAPP/wormgear/wormgear.html


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: neo]
      #4014601 - 08/30/10 04:30 AM

Thanks, neo. But I don't think that my craftsman can do the job, I had spoked with him earlier about worm gears, so I'm looking for some professional gears to buy, for the third mount, wich will be a german equatorial. This alt-az is experimental, I try to figure out what are the best solutions to use the already shape of the pistons. For example, the EQ will have a fixed pipe instead, mounted in another piston as a declination axe. The second piston will form the declination support, using rolerbearing instead bushings. The head to telescope dovetail bar will be the actual base of the AZ, and the actual vertical axe will be the right ascension one.

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mattyfatz
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 12/27/06

Loc: Boise Idaho
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4015635 - 08/30/10 03:55 PM

Genius

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