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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch
      #6206006 - 11/20/13 04:12 PM

... just wondering if anybody of you knows something about the new free turn q mount - looks really well made and has an very reasonable price. 395$ for the mount only and about 800$ complete with encoders, handle and dovetail plate.

for me it sounds/looks really good - who knows a bit about this company and their products?

kind regards
tom


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riverlaw
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Reged: 06/09/10

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6207054 - 11/21/13 08:04 AM

Hi Tom,

The mount is new and there is not much info on it. I recommend reading some of the reviews of the nova hitch. The new FTQ mount is sure to be of the same level of quality.

I had my nova for a bit and the quality is amazing. I sent it back for upgrades and for the tracking to be installed. I can't wait to get it back.


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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: riverlaw]
      #6207137 - 11/21/13 08:56 AM

hello riverlaw,

followed your advice - read some about the nova hitch - and then made an order. hopefully i will find it under the christmas tree

charles mentioned that my pentax 105sdp is a little on the upper edge - but i think for my fsq85, ipad mini with skysafari and nexus box it will be the perfect match.

tripods i have are baader hardwood, berlebach uni 22 and manfrotto 055xprob - what tripod are you using with your bigger nova hitch and what telescope mounted?

regards from germany
tom


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t.r.
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6207177 - 11/21/13 09:24 AM

Don't worry. All the Hitch mounts are overbuilt and if Charles said upper edge, you will still be fine. As for having it by Christmas, it may take a little more time I would think...it is brand new, but your patience will be rewarded!

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tom63
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: t.r.]
      #6207192 - 11/21/13 09:36 AM

thanx tim,

i was aware that this probably is wishful thinking

but if the mount is the same quality made like the bigger ones - i think this is a great value for the money and i'm so happy that it is MADE in usa and not just designed anywhere in the us or europe and then made in china - like too much things today - for my taste!


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davebuechler
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Reged: 08/21/11

Loc: Red River Gorge Kentucky
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6207952 - 11/21/13 04:59 PM

Hi Tom,

Just put my order in for one as well for use with my 106 F6.5. While we are at the upper limits of the FTQ, I am confident this new mount will handle our sized scopes with ease and much...much better than my Porta II.

My only concern is not having slo mo controls for viewing at high powers but I think smoothness and precise movement may eliminate the need. so I hope.

Lets compare notes after our deliveries


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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: davebuechler]
      #6208022 - 11/21/13 05:32 PM

hello dave,

perfect - now we both know - what lays side by side this moment in a cnc-shop hopefully garnishes a christmas tree in the usa and over here in germany

with my pentax105 i don't know whether it will work - tube only is 14 lbs - rings and plate 4 lbs - bino with tv delos 4 lbs => total 22 lbs. will see - but i plan to use the fsq85 with bino/pan 24 primarily - so total is just 14 lbs.

i never liked these slow-motion knobs on other mounts - don't think we will miss them once.

good idea - yes - we keep contact when they arrive and post a first-light picture ...

kind regards from munich
tom


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davebuechler
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Reged: 08/21/11

Loc: Red River Gorge Kentucky
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6208087 - 11/21/13 06:01 PM

Merry Christmas!!! Or at least it's starting to feel like it now that the spending has started

You have a few more pounds with the bino set up than I have with mine. Still I think we are OK but the telling test will come after we get them. I am just under 20 lbs. AT106 w FT3035 focuser, rings, 2" diagonal and my 35 pan. I am sure the FSQ85 will be a perfect fit and the mount will hardly know it's there!

Happy waiting!


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riverlaw
member


Reged: 06/09/10

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: davebuechler]
      #6208951 - 11/22/13 09:09 AM

Its funny you should mention the tripod Tom. I am trying to pick one right now. I was going to get the new one Charles (Hitch Mounts) is going to be offering, but I decided to go ahead and get the tracking. So now I am going to get a lower cost tripod. I am thinking about UNI tripod or possible the discount tripod. When I tested the nova hitch out I hacked it onto a CG-4 tripod and it had limited range, but enough for me to get a feel for the mount. I am going to being using this set up with a TSA102S for a while and then upgrade to a larger scope. I have my eye on the TEC 140. When I get a new scope I'll pick up a better tripod as well.

I would love to get the FSQ85 or FC76 down the road as a travel scope. I am sure you will enjoy the FSQ85 on the new mount.


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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: riverlaw]
      #6209111 - 11/22/13 10:28 AM

hello riverlaw,
yes 'tripodmania' ... the two i'm thinking about the last days are these:
http://www.berlebach.de/?bereich=details&id=245&sprache=english
http://www.manfrotto.com/super-professional-tripod-mk2
hmmmmm ...


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mattz
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Loc: Where is Rescue CA?
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6230731 - 12/03/13 03:10 AM

May want to consider the Manfrotto 545B. 55 lb capacity and weighs 7.7 lbs. You also need a 100mm half ball. The 100 mm half ball has a 3/8 screw which will (should) fit in the FTQ.

I have a 545b. I have the scopes and tripod, now I just need something in between them.


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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: mattz]
      #6230749 - 12/03/13 03:49 AM

matt,

thanks for suggestion - i have a berlebach tripod with halfball - but i will sell because the video tripods are too wide at the head and don't have extendable middle column. this way it's easier to get zentit-view ...


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mattz
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6230760 - 12/03/13 04:27 AM

Very true. I'm going for light weight and will give up something in order to get stability even at the light weight. Zenith is something I'm willing to give up.

It's all tradeoffs. Makes it kind of fun.


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tom63
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Reged: 08/15/13

Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: mattz]
      #6230771 - 12/03/13 04:45 AM Attachment (84 downloads)

yep - but it's not only about zenit - it's also easier to adjust the hight from floor to ocular - where your eye is placed. this is the point for me ...

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mattz
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6230823 - 12/03/13 06:22 AM

Nice setup, Tom. What is the video head you are using?

Sweet! Looks stable.


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tom63
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Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: mattz]
      #6230864 - 12/03/13 07:23 AM

that's a manfrotto 504hd with adapter 325n on 161 mk2 ... i replace head/adapter with a discmount dm4 next week.

... isn't it 03:00 in the morning over there in california


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SchrödingersCat
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Reged: 11/02/08

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6230991 - 12/03/13 09:17 AM

What is the bag hanging below the tripod spreader? Do you have a part number?

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tom63
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Loc: Munich / Germany / Europe
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: SchrödingersCat]
      #6231018 - 12/03/13 09:34 AM

manfrotto #166
http://www.manfrotto.com/utility-apron-manfrotto-version
http://www.amazon.com/Manfrotto-166-Utility-Apron-Replaces/dp/B001M4HUG0/ref=...


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dkbender
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Reged: 09/26/13

Loc: Illinois
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: tom63]
      #6235690 - 12/05/13 04:00 PM

I ordered a Free Turn Q today also. Charles thought mine would get to me before the end of the year.

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bdg
super member


Reged: 10/31/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: dkbender]
      #6236420 - 12/05/13 11:32 PM

Quote:

I ordered a Free Turn Q today also. Charles thought mine would get to me before the end of the year.




what do you plan to mount on FTQ? mine will be delivered by mid December


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dkbender
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Reged: 09/26/13

Loc: Illinois
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: bdg]
      #6236773 - 12/06/13 08:07 AM

bdg,

On an Induro 8M AT413 tripod and using my SVP 100ED f/9.

Charles told me yesterday, that the machining is almost complete on the first batch, then 3 - 5 days turnaround to the anodizer. He had 23 orders at this point yesterday, he said they go together fairly quickly but there is still significant assembly time. Depending on where you are in the list and how far away you are from Austin TX, I would think the very first ones will arrive in customers hands around the 20th. If you're further down the list like I am, he told me before the end of the year.


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bdg
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Reged: 10/31/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: dkbender]
      #6236873 - 12/06/13 09:09 AM

Quote:

bdg,

On an Induro 8M AT413 tripod and using my SVP 100ED f/9.

Charles told me yesterday, that the machining is almost complete on the first batch, then 3 - 5 days turnaround to the anodizer. He had 23 orders at this point yesterday, he said they go together fairly quickly but there is still significant assembly time. Depending on where you are in the list and how far away you are from Austin TX, I would think the very first ones will arrive in customers hands around the 20th. If you're further down the list like I am, he told me before the end of the year.




Cool thats a lot of details you have managed to gather :-) my order was probably among the first few. There have been some positive design updates like adding weight to balance EP's. I will be mounting ES 102 on this mount on a Oberwerk Tripod, it will be the ultimate grab and go !!!


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crixt
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Reged: 02/24/11

Loc: St. Pete, FL
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: bdg]
      #6243383 - 12/09/13 07:08 PM

I ordered a Free-Turn Q, along with an Oberwerk tripod and an ES102CF Apo. I plan to write up a review on the whole kit once I get the mount. The scope and tripod came already. This is killing me, lol. Also got the tracking. I wanted something I could take outside fully set up, or take to the beach to see the western horizon.

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crixt
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Reged: 02/24/11

Loc: St. Pete, FL
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: crixt]
      #6285665 - 01/01/14 02:39 PM

Did you guys opt for the FTQ1 now or wait for the FTQ2? I decided to wait.

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davebuechler
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Reged: 08/21/11

Loc: Red River Gorge Kentucky
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: crixt]
      #6286670 - 01/01/14 11:25 PM

i am going to wait for the FTQ2 as well. Better suited for my application, I think.

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Cheats
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Reged: 03/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: davebuechler]
      #6294566 - 01/05/14 06:42 PM

I'm going with the FTQ1. I won't be using anything larger than my C6 and 90mm refractor. Just need to decide which tripod to order.....

Chris


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HurricaneWhisper
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Reged: 07/28/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Cheats]
      #6296848 - 01/06/14 08:25 PM

Does anyone know what's the difference between the FTQ1 and 2? When are the 2's suppossed to ship?

Thanks.


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Fred1
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: HurricaneWhisper]
      #6297293 - 01/07/14 12:58 AM

There's an explanaiotn on the Yahoo Group from Charles Riddel, the manufacture. The FTQ2 is only a "very slight tweaking of the FTQ1." The FTQ1 is designed to support 80mm, 90mm, some of the shorter 4" refractors and the C-6. The FTQ2 is designed for similar scopes but with heavier payloads like binoviewers and triplets. There is much more information in Mr. Riddel's various posts on the Yahoo Group outlining his personal use and recommendations of the FTQ1 and anticipated shipping. I think it's best that I leave all to read it for themselves. I changed my order to the FTQ2 as I have a triplet and binoviewers that I plan to use on the mount sometimes, as well as a long 4" refractor with heavy 2" eyepieces.

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Boki
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Reged: 12/26/08

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Fred1]
      #6310018 - 01/13/14 11:06 AM

I have ordered the FTQ1 today for my 80mm ED doublet. Can't wait to test it. I am planning to use it on Sirui M3204 carbon fiber tripod. I think this is going to be a super light and precision system.

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SJTill
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Boki]
      #6348287 - 01/31/14 11:41 PM

Mine has been shipped.
Any reviews or comments from those who have received theirs?


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Jdillon
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Reged: 08/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: SJTill]
      #6349068 - 02/01/14 12:30 PM

I just received my FTQ. It took a while to unpack, it was rigorously bubble wrapped. What a nice piece of machinery! Clean, crisp, sturdy and smooth. It is a much more refined piece of gear than you’d expect for $279. (+ $25 handle). [Note: the introductory price is being raised in the next production run]. I mounted my TV85 with binoviewer for a test drive last night even though Charles said he wanted to promote this as a grab-and-go mount only, NOT for binoviewers. But I didn’t see any problem with the extra off-axis weight. So I grabbed it and went. Looked for the SN in M82. Found it!

Like its bigger brother the Nova Hitch (which I have on order and anxiously await) the FTQ offers 2 axis balancing. Fore&aft balance is simple by sliding the dovetail plate in the saddle or the OTA in its clamshell. But balancing up/down involves removing the scope and loosening 4 bolts to raise or lower the saddle. You need to remount the scope to check balance. If you use other scopes and need to readjust the saddle there is an engraved scale that allows you to note and reset any position changes. But I don’t think there will be much need for resetting the saddle position for most small scopes. The default setting worked surprisingly well for my TV85 even with the binoviewer but I lowered the saddle position anyhow to compensate for the off center weight distribution. Total weight must be near 11 lbs and damping took 1-2 secs. But I can live with that and it damps much quicker without the BV. I look forward to mounting my 13 lb Kowa Highlander binocs when the Binobracket is available and see how they ride in the saddle.

Rotation smoothness on the 2 axes is adjusted by the black long-handled clamps that vary brake pressure on the shafts. Fully closed they kept the scope in place while I changed eyepieces, even if I took off the binoviewer with EPs! I’ve never been able to do that with any other light weight mount I’ve used. I could do that with the DM4 I had, and damping time was lower, but It was 3x as expensive, nearly 2x as heavy and didn’t move any smoother. Not an apt comparison.

Seeing the FTQ makes waiting for my big Nova Hitch (with slo-motion and tracking) that much harder. Till it arrives, I’m very pleased with it’s little brother, FTQ.


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Boki
member


Reged: 12/26/08

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6349343 - 02/01/14 02:45 PM

Congratulations for your new mount. I hope it will perform well for your refracor. Just a short question:
What type of dovetail plate do you have (Hitch or Vixen)? I intend to use Vixen on mine, but I am worried it may slip if the clamp is too loose or just not very tight when adjusting for balance. What do you think? Do i have to be extra carefull about that? Thanks, CS Boki


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Jdillon
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Reged: 08/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Boki]
      #6349426 - 02/01/14 03:36 PM

My FTQ came with a Hitch dovetail. I doubt a Vixen plate would slip but haven't tried it.

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davebuechler
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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6350060 - 02/01/14 09:22 PM

Nice report Jdillon, thanks

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bdg
super member


Reged: 10/31/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6352039 - 02/02/14 08:34 PM

Quote:

My FTQ came with a Hitch dovetail. I doubt a Vixen plate would slip but haven't tried it.




did you order the hitch dovetail separately?


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Jdillon
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Reged: 08/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: bdg]
      #6352148 - 02/02/14 10:07 PM

Yes, I ordered the dovetail as an extra. Here's a photo of the TV85 & BV mounted on the FTQ with Nova dovetail.

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Jdillon
member


Reged: 08/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6352154 - 02/02/14 10:10 PM Attachment (42 downloads)

Oops! here's the photo:

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bdg
super member


Reged: 10/31/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6352155 - 02/02/14 10:10 PM

Quote:

Yes, I ordered the dovetail as an extra. Here's a photo of the TV85 & BV mounted on the FTQ with Nova dovetail.




where is the photo?


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davebuechler
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Reged: 08/21/11

Loc: Red River Gorge Kentucky
Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: bdg]
      #6352165 - 02/02/14 10:14 PM

Nice pic Jdillon! I bet it is nicer looking through it than at it!

What mount is it on and how much clearance do you get? Have you tried some high magnifications yet and if so how is damping time?


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bdg
super member


Reged: 10/31/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6352170 - 02/02/14 10:16 PM

Quote:

Oops! here's the photo:




did the dovetail come with that clamp which holds the scope.


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Jdillon
member


Reged: 08/17/13

Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: bdg]
      #6353351 - 02/03/14 01:55 PM Attachment (42 downloads)

Dave, I assume by mount you meant the tripod since the FTQ mount is the subject of this thread. I photographed it on my Berlebach Uni14 tripod which has a wide top plate. Here's a photo of the scope pointed up but still with some space before hitting the tripod. It looks like it would make it to within 10 deg or so of the zenith. (see attached photo) I rarely see a need to use a scope pointed straight up. I'd rather just wait a bit till the object rotates lower. I also have a Manfrotto 475 camera tripod which will let it get even more vertical. You can also use vertical spacers under the FTQ to get more clearance.
As I said in my first post, damping time with the BV was 1-2 secs. Much less with it off. But the rains have finally arrived here in N. Cal. and I haven't been able to spend more time with it. John


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davebuechler
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Reged: 08/21/11

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Re: Half Hitch - Free Turn Q / Nova Hitch new [Re: Jdillon]
      #6353583 - 02/03/14 04:04 PM

Hi John,

Yes, sorry I meant tripod and well noted you are using the Berlebach Uni. Sounds like it is an excellent fit for the TV85 even with binoviewers. Soory the clouds have rolled in but glad you got it out for a trail run or two


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