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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Reged: 12/28/07

Loc: West of the D.C. Nebula
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: gillmj24]
      #3777956 - 04/30/10 01:47 PM


How quiet is the Mach 1? Is it Atlas-quiet?

No, it's a bit louder. As long as you balance the scope, it should have the same loading on the gears. I've used mine 100 times now, with everything from a C11 to a 10 inch Newt to a 6 inch achro and it sounds the same.

It emits a higher pitched whine when it moves. You can definitely hear it - but it's not too bad. I have a herd of deer who share the back yard with me during the night. They have never been spooked by my slewing - but I have been startled by them a few times.


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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece

Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: CounterWeight]
      #3778010 - 04/30/10 02:15 PM

My AP1200 sound varies with loading. I never rebalance the mount (as it flips meridian) and the mount sounds a little different as it passes through the meridian and then again as it takes on the load on the new size.

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Carpal Tunnel

Reged: 05/10/07

Loc: New England
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: gillmj24]
      #3778048 - 04/30/10 02:33 PM


How quiet is the Mach 1? Is it Atlas-quiet?

I wouldn't characterize it as a quiet goto, I think AP said the noise had to be fairly loud with the large motors from the 900/1200 series. you might want to join the AP yahoo group, the archives have more info from AP on questions like this.

I went with the 15-inch ribbed mounting plate, standard counterweight shaft. I did get the polar alignment scope, but I doubt I'll ever use it. If you level your tripod/pier and use the peephole in the mount to center Polaris while setting up you really don't need the scope. There are several different routines you can use that I think are faster than the scope.

for instance there is a routine you can use to polar align during the day based on the Sun. I was able to do this the first time I tried and it only took a couple iterations of the alignment process to get very close. (Afterward I was able to use goto to view Venus and Mercury during the day for the 1st time, very fun).

I got this to make it easier to take the mount apart & also attach my rings to the mounting plate, it really speeds things up:

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Post Laureate

Reged: 12/06/05

Loc: PA
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: Scott99]
      #3778101 - 04/30/10 02:55 PM

I consider my G11 fairly quiet, is the mach1 louder? I am considering making the switch though I haven't used the Gemini yet in the 4 months I have owned it; I do have some limited experience with the AP hand controller and it is probably just more my thing....

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Reged: 01/05/08

Loc: Canada
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: gillmj24]
      #3779016 - 05/01/10 12:54 AM

My modified signature says it all! The new mount is set up. It's beefier than I expected, which explains why people are able to put a 55lb imaging load on it.

At the risk of killing Bert off altogether, I'm posting links to a couple of pics:

One surprise, I bought it with the 900/1200-compatible short counterweight shaft and 28lb of counterweights and estimated from the AP website that this would be enough to balance my 34lb imaging payload -- it wasn't -- good thing I bought a counterweight extension shaft for "future expansion" as I needed it right away. I bought the ICRON USB Ranger 2104 USB 2.0 Extender for remote control from the house via a Cat5e cable. It's pretty slick and controlled the scope while collecting images from my guide camera and QHY8. It will save my butt during mosquito season and the dead of winter.

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Reged: 01/02/08

Loc: San Tan Valley, AZ, USA
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: microstar]
      #3779124 - 05/01/10 04:08 AM

Verrrry nice, Keith! I'd have to say that the general consensus says that 55 lbs is OK for imaging in refractor and SCT (and Newtonian! ) equipment configurations...

Thanks to each and every one of you for the overwhelming feedback!

Clear skies to all...

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Reged: 10/05/08

Loc: Palo alto, CA.
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... new [Re: WirelessDude]
      #3798944 - 05/11/10 10:53 AM

Just thought I'd update my post on this about the Mach-1 and the TEC 160ED (with a piggyback Onyx80mm). Still haven't captured any photons with it. I'm only in the low 30lb's with it but the mount handles it well / easily. It makes about same level noise as my CGE did when slewing between objects with identical load. A bit of a reach (TEC 160ED) to do the PA without a diagonal (I don't use one) with the length of the OTA + 2" extender tube + eyepiece, but do-able. I tried with a single iteration and double iteration. Monitored tracking with a 12.5mm reticle ep and without guiding and it's rock solid. Did same using guidescope and stayed dead on. But visual isn't a good test - so all that I need is another clear night (and enough sleep beforehand to make use of it). I may eventually go for a slightly larger guidescope, something in the 90/100mm range, but I'll also need to do something for addt'l counterweight. The three 9 lb cw's are very near end of shaft. Really pushing it would be to mount the FS-128 as a guidescope, but I don't intend to go there.

The mount is 'working' with the load / moment arm, but doesn't seem as hard as the CGE had to. The slewing isn't 'quiet' but also not as loud as the CGE. I'd say the difference is small. Tracking or guided tracking is really pretty quiet, as was case with other mount. I used it on my permanent pier - 12" reinforced concrete and am happy no issues with scope at Zenith the 'woyks' still clear of the pier.

Anyone know of if there's an adaptor for the CGE tripod to the Mach-1?

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scholastic sledgehammer

Reged: 10/28/07

Loc: East S.F.Bay, CA
Re: Pushing the Mach1's AP Limits... [Re: CounterWeight]
      #3799327 - 05/11/10 02:12 PM

Well, I've got my 10"X1.875" CWS and safety stop, my 10# CW, and my dov8 mounting plate from Robin Casady.

But.... Other than that, I'm still waiting as patiently as I can for the stuff that goes between the first two items and the 3rd. It's getting tougher by the minute.


Edited by bseltzer (05/11/10 02:13 PM)

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