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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: mattyfatz]
      #4081092 - 09/29/10 04:34 PM

Some ehnancement of the homemade tripod:



- internal alu arms for increased rigidity
- accessories triangle dish
- aluminium conical shoes, replacing the rubber ones
- carry belt, cause the tripod is very heavy...


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neo
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Reged: 02/12/08

Loc: Iasi, Romania
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4081202 - 09/29/10 05:26 PM

Tavi

Congrats and well done
Absolutely brilliant!


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: neo]
      #4535932 - 04/22/11 06:32 AM

The AZ-piston mount nr.2 is almost complete, ready for testing at night!

Here are azimouth fine tune mechanism:


It's based on a stainless steel M6 long screw:




The Fraunhofer refractor (80F/11.25) and the maksutov-cassegrain teleobjective MTO11-CA (100F/10) on the mount:



The stability of the mount is impressive and the fine tuning, can be improved, but useful. I will test the mount in the following spring hollydays.


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eric_zeiner
Phoenix's Dad
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Reged: 12/09/06

Loc: Georgia USA 34 31'57.18N 83 53...
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4537141 - 04/22/11 05:38 PM

Now you are cooking!

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neo
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Reged: 02/12/08

Loc: Iasi, Romania
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: eric_zeiner]
      #4538266 - 04/23/11 08:02 AM

Fantastic job Tavi!
I imagine that a drive system (maybe even Goto) would be a terrific addition to this mount. The only problem would be finding a good 'n cheap set of worm gears but with some patience...


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Gray
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 01/31/11

Loc: Hixson, TN
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: neo]
      #4538439 - 04/23/11 10:04 AM

test

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Doug76
Long Achro Junkie
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Reged: 12/05/07

Loc: Refractor Heaven
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4538940 - 04/23/11 02:26 PM

As Eric and Frank opined...Awesome and Brilliant!

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Ed D
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Reged: 04/30/10

Loc: Sunny South Florida
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Doug76]
      #4539415 - 04/23/11 06:55 PM

I'm VERY impressed! Nice work.

Ed D


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Ed D]
      #4549841 - 04/28/11 02:32 PM

Thank you!
Tuesday I've tried the mount with the refractor. The fine tune mechanism work great, except a small vibration on the azimuth. I will put a felt disk under the piston to brake it in position, cause the roler bearings allow moving it too easy.

I'm sure the mount will cary the future classic cassegrain 200 F/15 I will make this summer.


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #4549849 - 04/28/11 02:35 PM

Neo, I will keep the idea of the worm gear for the next piston mount, I have a lot of them! Thank you and clear sky!

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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #5347384 - 08/01/12 05:40 PM

Because I had allmost finished the new clasical cassegrain 8" - wich I'll show you in another topic - and in the testing phase some problems has arised, I've made some improvements on the heavy piston AZ mount. First, I made a vixen style bar and adapt a vixen head from EQ6 mount, then a counterweight and the bar to put the telescope in equilibrium.



Cause the slips of the altitude clutch and the too big backlash of the fine tune mechanism on the azimuth, I've made some modifications to solve these problems.



Also I put new knobs on the screws and a eccentric lever instead a screw to activate the altitude clutch. To make the movements smoother I put custom lexan washers instead steel ones.



Now the mount work great, like when small refractors was on it, almost like a dobsonian when not used the fine tune mechanisms.


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #5615715 - 01/10/13 03:18 PM

A new small piston AZ mount, finished last month:










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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #5615728 - 01/10/13 03:23 PM

The new mount has fine tuning screws on both axis and a vixen style head. The RFT refractor 90x600 in the picture is too heavy for it, but I use this mount with the mini maksutov MTO11-CA and is working great.

The only piece made on a lathe is the elastic textolit bushing which is the altitude clutch. Other pieces was made using hand tools and the homemade minimill.

Edited by Tavi (01/10/13 03:29 PM)


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Unknownastron
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Reged: 04/06/05

Loc: CatsEye Observatory,Rural Sout...
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #5641808 - 01/25/13 12:43 AM

Very good ideas and beautiful work. You are a very talented craftsman and your finished works look as much like art as machine. I look forward to your threads about that beautiful metal cassegrain. That is one of the best-looking telescopes I have ever seen.
Clear skies and clean glass,
Mike


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jmclaugh2001
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Reged: 02/27/06

Loc: Reynoldsburg, Ohio
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Unknownastron]
      #5641868 - 01/25/13 02:18 AM

Sweet! I luv it!!

John


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: jmclaugh2001]
      #5641878 - 01/25/13 02:27 AM

Thank you!
I could't wait to bring them again under the dark sky.


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Tavi
super member


Reged: 10/11/09

Loc: Romania, EU
Re: The Piston AZ mount new [Re: Tavi]
      #5642732 - 01/25/13 02:45 PM

unknowastron, here is the topic about the cassegrain with details:
http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php?Cat=0&Board=atm&N...


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