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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Ken Ross
super member


Reged: 12/24/09

Loc: New York
Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new
      #3554446 - 01/11/10 03:57 PM

Since I've never owned a scope that mounts via a dovetail, is there a way to avoid what seems like inevitable marks (black paint rubbed off) on the plate every time you mount the OTA and tighten the mounting screw?

It seems odd to me that the OTA is held on to the dovetail mount by one very small point of contact (the point of the screw on the mount). You'd think (at least I would ) that the force would be distributed over a wider area.


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Peter in Reno
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/15/08

Loc: Reno, NV
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3554463 - 01/11/10 04:03 PM

You didn't say what brand mount you have. You can upgrade the saddle from ADM accessories and will not scratch dovetails.

www.admaccessories.com

Peter


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Ken Ross
super member


Reged: 12/24/09

Loc: New York
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Peter in Reno]
      #3554509 - 01/11/10 04:25 PM

Thanks Peter, it's the standard dovetail mount on the Ioptron Mini Tower.

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Lane
Post Laureate


Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3554590 - 01/11/10 05:08 PM

Ken, its a dovetail, its going to get scratched up, get over it. This is like buying a car and asking how to keep the tires from getting scratch up

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mclewis1
Thread Killer
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Lane]
      #3554851 - 01/11/10 07:35 PM

I'll second Lane's comment but if it's really going to bug you consider replacing the Vixen style dovetail with one that has steel plates on the side. I have a dovetail bar that came from APM (the company that used to sell TMB branded scopes) like that. You might want to see if Morris can find one for you ... http://www.apmamerica.com/

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Ken Ross
super member


Reged: 12/24/09

Loc: New York
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #3554871 - 01/11/10 07:43 PM

Thanks guys. But hey, how DO you keep the tires from getting scratched up?

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EdTheEdge
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 04/10/09

Loc: Lomita, CA
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3555026 - 01/11/10 08:52 PM

I consider marks on my dovetail bars badges of honor. It shows that I am using my scopes!

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BlueGrass
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 07/25/09

Loc: Wasatch Front, UT
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: EdTheEdge]
      #3555457 - 01/12/10 12:33 AM

Only dovetail marks that I regret are the ones on my EON80's Vixen 'foot', otherwise the EON is still a Black Beauty...
One thing I do to minimize the dovetail damage for mounting scopes to my CG5, I buy Orion's guidescope mounting rails which is their Vixen rail pre-drilled for various ring placements. I then cut and repaint it as necessary to either mount scopes to the CG5 or to mount other scopes piggyback, just inverting the dovetail. I can drill and countersink these rails as necessary but typically find that I only have to shorten them.
Their only $16 or so and in my book, expendable. Especially considering the cost of other rails from ADM, Losmandy, AT, etc....
With D series rails, they tend to stay clean with no marks since there are no screws digging into the rail sides.


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John J
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 11/05/07

Loc: South East SD.
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3555484 - 01/12/10 12:54 AM

Dove tail mounts have been like this for many many years and have proved to be reliable. You ain't gonna see it in the dark any way.

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7331Peg
Sirius Observer
*****

Reged: 09/01/08

Loc: North coast of Oregon
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3555543 - 01/12/10 02:18 AM

Quote:

Thanks guys. But hey, how DO you keep the tires from getting scratched up?




Turtlewax on the treads.


John


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Charlie HeinAdministrator
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Reged: 11/02/03

Loc: 26.06.08N, +80.23.08W
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: BlueGrass]
      #3555643 - 01/12/10 06:42 AM

Quote:

With D series rails, they tend to stay clean with no marks since there are no screws digging into the rail sides.




Even so, eventually you'll get wear just from the metal to metal contact as the two parts slide against each other. This happens even with "tilt-in" saddles - you must slide the dovetail back and forth in the saddle in order to balance your load and eventually this is going to cause wear on those parts. I can see it on the saddle as well as the dovetails on my G-11 - more so on the saddle actually. If they don't have it then they're either permanently mounted in an observatory or they aren't getting a lot of useage.


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John Fitzgerald
In Focus
*****

Reged: 01/04/04

Loc: AR
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Charlie Hein]
      #3555687 - 01/12/10 07:52 AM

It happens. It's going to happen if used. You can avoid any dovetail marks or other signs of use by always keeping your equipment in its box and never using it. If you worry about such things as dovetail marks, you will worry even more about things like dust on the lens/mirror. Maybe this hobby is not really for you.

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JayKSC
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 01/01/05

Loc: Florida
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3555900 - 01/12/10 10:41 AM

I traditionally was a bit OCD about my new equipment, so put some black electrical tape alongside my dovetails to avoid them from getting scratched up. This worked for about the first six months. Replacing the tape every month or so would probably do the trick, but then, it's a dovetail. Heck, my 150mm achromat's optical tube has scuffs and scratches (such a long tube, hard to avoid those!).

- Jay
South Florida


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Takman
sage


Reged: 02/25/09

Loc: Maple, ON - Canada
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: JayKSC]
      #3557855 - 01/13/10 09:44 AM

Marks and scratches are inevitable, especially if you handling heavier loads. However, I sprayed black primer on some of the badly scratched dovetails and they looked as good as new.

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dscarpa
Post Laureate
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Reged: 03/15/08

Loc: San Diego Ca.
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: Ken Ross]
      #3558370 - 01/13/10 02:21 PM

This bugged me when I got my first scope. I think the marks on the rail makes it less slippery and gives the screw a better grip. David

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John Fitzgerald
In Focus
*****

Reged: 01/04/04

Loc: AR
Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? new [Re: dscarpa]
      #3559376 - 01/13/10 10:22 PM

Quote:

This bugged me when I got my first scope. I think the marks on the rail makes it less slippery and gives the screw a better grip. David



I use the heavy screw marks on my solid alum dovetail plates to advantage, allowing consistent placement.


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Gordon Rayner
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 03/24/07

Re: Avoiding marks on a dovetail plate? [Re: John Fitzgerald]
      #3586294 - 01/27/10 12:17 AM

Orion now lists two female dovetails, for use with the larger Losmandy male bars, to adapt them to an Orion mount. See # 7950 and # 7951. The price is $30. I wonder if they are suitable for, or might be adapted to, more general applications. The price is relatively attractive. www.OrionTelescopes.com

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