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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Aquatone
sage


Reged: 03/23/06

Loc: California Bay Area
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: WadeH237]
      #6250226 - 12/13/13 02:02 AM Attachment (52 downloads)

Quote:

Quote:

If you add the $7,000 absolute encoders, there is no need for any guiding.




Not exactly.

With PEM enabled, the mount is capable of sub arc pixel tracking even without the encoders. Even assuming perfect polar alignment, The issue with long duration unguided exposures is that the rate the sky itself moves is not constant due to refraction. You probably also have flexure or other mechanical issues.

What you need to track unguided is a model of the sky that accounts for all of this. If AP ever gets around to shipping APC, the pro version can take many exposures all around the sky and build a model that does just that. It even accounts for non-perfect polar alignment.

With APC, you should be able to go unguided, as long as any mechanical errors are repeatable. Actual flex probably falls into this category. Mirror flop may not, and then you'd still need to guide.

-Wade




Yes that is essentially correct. I have an AP1600GTO with Absolute Encoders and in tests I can expose totally unguided at a long focal length of 3,708mm for about 10-15 minutes before the stars start to get slightly "eggy". That is all due to refraction and flexure however. Measuring the mounts PE with Absolute Encoders results in zero. (Literally) One advantage, is that even with guiding, with the Absolute Encoders one does not need to issue a guide correction very often.

I actually had an AP1100GTO on order but changed it to an AP1600GTO after seeing both side by side at AIC 2013. One minor consideration was the slightly awkward mounting of the control boxes at the rear of the AP1100 mount/pier interface compared to the neater AP1600GTO installation due to that mounts greater size.

Here is a picture of how the Absolute Encoder and GTOCP3 control boxes are mounted at the rear of the AP1100GTO on a wide mounting plate. If you have only the GTOCP3 there is a smaller mounting plate though in the same position.

Chris


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coz
sage


Reged: 08/25/10

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Aquatone]
      #6250365 - 12/13/13 07:04 AM

Can you use the APCC Pro's pointing model if you don't have absolute encoders?

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WadeH237
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 02/24/07

Loc: Snohomish, WA
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: coz]
      #6250416 - 12/13/13 08:13 AM

Quote:

Can you use the APCC Pro's pointing model if you don't have absolute encoders?




Yes (if they ever ship it).


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coz
sage


Reged: 08/25/10

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: WadeH237]
      #6250983 - 12/13/13 01:55 PM

If the software works as expected why would you get the encoders then?

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Jeff B
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 12/30/06

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Jeff B]
      #6251160 - 12/13/13 03:36 PM Attachment (49 downloads)

Makes a great match up with the APM/TMB 175 F8, which is similar to an AP 175 F8.

Jeff


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dawziecat
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: Rural Nova Scotia
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Jeff B]
      #6251319 - 12/13/13 05:06 PM

Gorgeous, Jeff. The HD tripod is close to my heart too.

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PGW Steve
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 10/03/06

Loc: Winnipeg, Canada
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: dawziecat]
      #6251442 - 12/13/13 06:04 PM

I just picked up an 1100 plate to mount my CP3 and AE box on the south side of my pier. I absolutely hated the cords sticking out the side of my 1600, it messed with my maneuverability at zenith near the meridian and such.

1100's are a pretty little mount. You guys will love them!! And if anyone got the encoder option, be prepared for awe. I use a T Point model on mine, I power up the mount, connect The Sky X to it, pick an object and slew....Dead centre. This is with 3500mm focal length.


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WadeH237
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 02/24/07

Loc: Snohomish, WA
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: coz]
      #6252547 - 12/14/13 12:09 PM

Quote:

If the software works as expected why would you get the encoders then?




In my opinion, the main reason to get the encoders is if you have a permanently mounted, remote observatory. Once you setup the mount and initialize the encoders (so that they know the position of the mount and a fixed home position), the mount can never get lost again. For a remote observatory, this means that you can recover from stuff like power outages without worrying that the mount or scope might collide with something when trying to get it back to the home position. Once you get it to the home position, it's a straightforward matter to resync it with the sky and be fully aligned again.

Also, the encoders do provide slightly better tracking. You get essentially zero PE with the encoders. My 1600 gets around 0.2 arc seconds of PE with PEM enabled. Also, with the encoders, the mount can perfectly compensate for backlash in either axis. This can offer some improvement to guiding, particularly in declination.

Of course, the AP mounts are legendary for their tracking and guiding capabilities. I suspect that most people (myself included) don't get the encoders. If I had a remote observatory, I would then get them.


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coz
sage


Reged: 08/25/10

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: WadeH237]
      #6255218 - 12/15/13 08:45 PM

Thanks WadeH327 very helpful.

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Peter in Reno
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/15/08

Loc: Reno, NV
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: coz]
      #6266164 - 12/21/13 10:53 PM Attachment (42 downloads)

I have not yet receive my ATS portable pier. So I decided to come up with a plan to mount GTOCP3 box, USB hub and Optec focuser hub. You can see pictures of my AP1100 along with accessories at My AP1100 plus accessories . All three boxes are velcroed to the mount. I removed A-P nameplates at both sides of the mount.

The way I plan to setup is that all cables (power, USB and focuser cables) will be routed through the mount so that I can carry the whole thing (not inlcuding ATS pier) without disconnecting the cables from all three boxes. I have decided not to use Astro-Physics GTOCP3 holder where it mounts to the South side and BELOW the mount because it's inconvenient. For example if I want to put AP1100 mount on the ground, I would have to disconnect GTOCP3 first (and possibly disconnect cables as well) and I find it inconvenient. I wish Astro-Physics did similar setup like in their AP1600 where you can put accessories at both sides of the mount and not worry about placing the mount on any surface.

Attached is a sample photo.

What do ya think?

Peter


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gosavich
member


Reged: 12/22/08

Loc: Tempe, Arizona, USA
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: gosavich]
      #6266236 - 12/22/13 12:31 AM Attachment (32 downloads)

-quick follow up to my earlier post. My mount arrived yesterday, on the 20th. I have been having a great time unboxing and setting it up for the first time. Hopefully I'll have a chance to take it outside tomorrow night and run it through some paces. :-)

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Peter in Reno
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/15/08

Loc: Reno, NV
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: gosavich]
      #6266252 - 12/22/13 12:40 AM

Congrats!!!!!

Peter


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famax
member


Reged: 07/01/07

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Peter in Reno]
      #6266514 - 12/22/13 08:14 AM

Greats mounts !
any review , PE curves and so on expected ?

thanks guys !


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M13 Observer
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/09/06

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Peter in Reno]
      #6266601 - 12/22/13 10:10 AM

Quote:

I have not yet receive my ATS portable pier. So I decided to come up with a plan to mount GTOCP3 box, USB hub and Optec focuser hub. You can see pictures of my AP1100 along with accessories at My AP1100 plus accessories . All three boxes are velcroed to the mount. I removed A-P nameplates at both sides of the mount.

The way I plan to setup is that all cables (power, USB and focuser cables) will be routed through the mount so that I can carry the whole thing (not inlcuding ATS pier) without disconnecting the cables from all three boxes. I have decided not to use Astro-Physics GTOCP3 holder where it mounts to the South side and BELOW the mount because it's inconvenient. For example if I want to put AP1100 mount on the ground, I would have to disconnect GTOCP3 first (and possibly disconnect cables as well) and I find it inconvenient. I wish Astro-Physics did similar setup like in their AP1600 where you can put accessories at both sides of the mount and not worry about placing the mount on any surface.

Attached is a sample photo.

What do ya think?

Peter




I think it looks pretty good Peter. My thoughts exactly about where the controller boxes mount. I'll think about removing the plaques from the sides as well if I go this way.

Not so sure about leaving the mount on the ATS pier and moving it as a unit unless it is on a wheeled base of some sort. If not, I hope you have a lot in common with "Strongman" Mike Sidonio.


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M13 Observer
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/09/06

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: M13 Observer]
      #6266607 - 12/22/13 10:18 AM

I just looked at the rest of the pictures you supplied the URL to. Just want to add that you might want to move the CP3 up a a half inch to an inch. Although it "looks" accessible, having a lot of room to manipulate the threaded lock-down on the 12V power is pretty much non-optional unless you plan on attaching it once and leaving it like that. I speak from years of experience. The setup looks really nice.

Edited by M13 Observer (12/22/13 10:20 AM)


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Peter in Reno
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/15/08

Loc: Reno, NV
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: M13 Observer]
      #6266826 - 12/22/13 12:33 PM

I plan to transport the mount and ATS pier separately. No way I can transport both as a unit. Yeah I noticed that the GTOCP3 box is too low for reason you described.

Peter


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Aquatone
sage


Reged: 03/23/06

Loc: California Bay Area
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Peter in Reno]
      #6266997 - 12/22/13 02:25 PM

Ditto on the GTOCP3 position. It is odd that the explicitly portable AP1100 has it mounted in such an incovenient low place making it harder to transport the mount all in one piece with as few loose components as possible. There is space to side mount it. In that sense the older AP900 with its top mounted position was also more compact.

Great looking mount though!

Chris


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M13 Observer
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/09/06

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: Aquatone]
      #6267348 - 12/22/13 06:09 PM

Quote:

Ditto on the GTOCP3 position. It is odd that the explicitly portable AP1100 has it mounted in such an incovenient low place making it harder to transport the mount all in one piece with as few loose components as possible. There is space to side mount it. In that sense the older AP900 with its top mounted position was also more compact.

Great looking mount though!

Chris




I would have kept my 900 if it had the locking clutches that the new mounts have (Mach1GTO, 1600, 1100). It seems I don't have any problems with the Delrin plugs on my 1200 but if I locked them down hard enough to make the clutch difficult to slip on my 900, I would always forget to loosen them off. Eventually they would mushroom and require replacement.

I think we took a bit of a sideways step with the 1100 and lost a few features I liked (CP3 mounting position being one of them, tool-less setup another) and received a few features which are good (locking clutches, better gear meshing), a feature which is ok (through the mount cabling) and a feature I will likely never have or use (optional encoders).
I like taking the mount apart for storage and transport. Leaving it together is heavy and bulky, no matter that it will "collapse" into a manageable position. Once you wrap a protective box around that big hunk of aluminum it really gets heavy. Having two smaller lighter boxes/cases is definitely a bonus.


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jblockyou
sage


Reged: 07/19/10

Loc: Greenview, Illinois
Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: M13 Observer]
      #6283903 - 12/31/13 04:35 PM

Looks like we hit a little dry spell for deliveries on the 1100.

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Skunky
sage


Reged: 09/16/13

Re: Any New AP1100 notifications? new [Re: WadeH237]
      #6284418 - 12/31/13 09:09 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Can you use the APCC Pro's pointing model if you don't have absolute encoders?




Yes (if they ever ship it).




I think our sun will go supernova first before APCC ships.. I mean come on.. The software developer has been working on APCC for 3 years+! Never ever have I ever heard of software taking so long to develop.. And I have Project Managed a few hundred software devs to just a one man team..

Without APCC the encoders are effectively the exact same as a TDM.. (well there is no DEC TDM..)


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