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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Ad Astra
professor emeritus
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Reged: 05/12/10

Loc: Riverside Co., California
Is there a better deal for 5K?
      #4457763 - 03/18/11 12:18 PM

Hi folks,

I've been contemplating a mount for my big refractor. My Apomax is a 133mm f/12 monster that masses at least 20kg with diagonal, focuser, tube rings, etc. and the tube is over 6-feet long with dew cap.

Roland at AP has said that the Mach-1 would NOT be suitable for this scope, and recommended an AP 900 (drool!) or an AP 1200 Waaaay beyond my budget.

I have 5K saved up for this - but with the economy, I don't see getting more saved soon and prices are a-climbing! So I've looked at the G-11 as an affordable alternative.

For 5K I can get a new G11 with all the bells and whistles, and the CFO has tenatively given her approval for the purchase. The $64,000 question is - am I missing an obvious alternative in this price class? Alternatively, am I spending 5K of hard earned cash on something that just won't do the job????

I do mostly visual work, but to be frank, I've never had this darn thing properly mounted to try that, however much I wanted to. I certainly plan to do some more of that with the new mount. I also teach astronomy, so this baby will be transported here, there and everywhere - so I definately want a folding tripod and not a pier setup.

I've considered used, but I'm not overly enthusiastic towards used equipment... I've been burned to many times! Still, if you know a little old astronomer with an AP mount thats only been to Andromeda and back a few times....

Any help would be appreciated - I'm going to pull the trigger in the next 30 days or so (my birthday's coming up!)

Dan


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t.r.
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 02/14/08

Loc: Upstate NY
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4457785 - 03/18/11 12:26 PM

Not being a here but, if the AP Mach 1 won't do it for visual(although I think it can, PM me), what makes you think the G11 will? Really, it just comes down to how much of a fuss budget you are...less than a second dampening time, 2 seconds, 4...I've had 55+ pounds on the Mach, it can do it, with minor vibrations on the Eagle pier....what can you live with? Put it on a solid pier or the Meade Giant Field Tripod. Put a Hargraves strut on it, it can be done.

Edited by t.r. (03/18/11 12:34 PM)


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skybsd
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4457791 - 03/18/11 12:27 PM

Hello Dan,
That payload and moment arm are indeed mount killers

Cursory checks revealed this option - actually 1 of two at OPT right now..,

You get (on paper) capacity, native observing height and change back from your $5K.

RA and DEC break down into separate pieces for transport - not unlike the AP, Titan, etc..,

Alternatively (creative compromise), there's this little number on right now on Astromart - again you get change back..,

Brand new..., that payload and moment arm with the budget limitations you have, make for difficult decisions indeed. I don't envy you..,

Best of luck.

Regards,

skybsd


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gillmj24
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 12/06/05

Loc: PA
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4457796 - 03/18/11 12:29 PM

A used AP is more of a sure bet than most other manufacturers. They have advertised the mach 1 with an AP 155 which although larger aperture is a MUCH more manageable scope.

The Mach1 is greater in capability than the G11. You can probably use it for visual but it will probably be shakier. You won't be happy and it certainly won't do the fine scope justice.


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skybsd
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: skybsd]
      #4457810 - 03/18/11 12:36 PM

Creative compromise-2



Regards,

skybsd


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Tom and Beth
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/08/07

Loc: Tucson, AZ
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4457869 - 03/18/11 01:04 PM

There was an AP1200 QMD on Astromart recently at that price.
I know you said you don't like used but it's HARD to do any damage to the 1200. Since youu're visual, do you really need GOTO?

Best of all, AP still provides tech support, repairs and replacement parts (if you ever need them)


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MikeCatfin
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 03/12/04

Loc: NJ, USA
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Tom and Beth]
      #4457882 - 03/18/11 01:13 PM

A Losmandy Titan would probably work, but to keep it within your budget possibly a used one. Looks like one sold recently on AM for ~$4k.

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Ad Astra
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 05/12/10

Loc: Riverside Co., California
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: MikeCatfin]
      #4458063 - 03/18/11 02:37 PM

Hi Guys!

Thanks Skybsd! I talked to Chris at OPT and he is holding the open-box CGE PRO for me until I can get down there tomorrow or Saturday. He is going to let me take my monster OTA down there and try it out on the mount.

He is also offering a really good price for cash and a 2-year warranty!
Just have to drag Mrs. Astra down there and see how it looks.... wish me luck!

Dan

Edited by Ad Astra (03/18/11 02:38 PM)


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nemo129
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Reged: 01/03/10

Loc: WMass
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4458120 - 03/18/11 03:00 PM

I know it is about $2k over your budget...did you see this? Just a thought.

...or nevermind. I just saw one of skybsd's links...a better deal!

Edited by nemo129 (03/18/11 03:03 PM)


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LLEEGE
True Blue
*****

Reged: 03/03/05

Loc: Cloud-chester,NY
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4458133 - 03/18/11 03:03 PM

There is an AP1200 for sale in the swap and shop section for a bang up price. If I was in the market, it's be gone.

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skybsd
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: LLEEGE]
      #4458208 - 03/18/11 03:49 PM

The sooner you guys stop reminding me about that mount, the sooner I can get some sleep

Regards,

skybsd


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nemo129
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Reged: 01/03/10

Loc: WMass
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: skybsd]
      #4458249 - 03/18/11 04:09 PM

My Apologies. I did not know it elicited bad memories.

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skybsd
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: nemo129]
      #4458263 - 03/18/11 04:16 PM

Hi Kirk,

Quote:

My Apologies. I did not know it elicited bad memories.




No worries..,

I'll be fine..,

Regards,

skybsd


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skybsd
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4458273 - 03/18/11 04:19 PM

Hi Dan,

Quote:

Hi Guys!

Thanks Skybsd! I talked to Chris at OPT and he is holding the open-box CGE PRO for me until I can get down there tomorrow or Saturday. He is going to let me take my monster OTA down there and try it out on the mount.

He is also offering a really good price for cash and a 2-year warranty!
Just have to drag Mrs. Astra down there and see how it looks.... wish me luck!




Sounds like good news there.., Hopefully your scope will find its new home this weekend..,

Do let us know how you get on..,

Regards,

skybsd


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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece
*****

Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: skybsd]
      #4458706 - 03/18/11 08:49 PM

my AP900QMD was indescribably awesome at $3500 !!!
http://www.pbase.com/mclemens1969/image/68848137/original


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Ad Astra
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 05/12/10

Loc: Riverside Co., California
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Mike Clemens]
      #4459058 - 03/19/11 12:45 AM

Quote:

my AP900QMD was indescribably awesome at $3500 !!!
http://www.pbase.com/mclemens1969/image/68848137/original




Sent you a PM, pal, give me a call!

Dan


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asesino
member


Reged: 03/03/11

Loc: Air strip one, Oceania
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: Ad Astra]
      #4461100 - 03/20/11 01:35 AM

wow that cge pro looks like a deal.

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skybsd
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/01/08

Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: asesino]
      #4461248 - 03/20/11 06:06 AM

Quote:

wow that cge pro looks like a deal.




Well., last time I checked, there were TWO of them - if you're interested

Regards,

skybsd


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LLEEGE
True Blue
*****

Reged: 03/03/05

Loc: Cloud-chester,NY
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: asesino]
      #4461706 - 03/20/11 11:39 AM

Quote:

wow that cge pro looks like a deal.


I got one at NEAF last year for much less then that. Even at 3k, it's no deal.
My advice would be to pass on it. It isn't worth the headaches.


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Mike Clemens
Frozen to Eyepiece
*****

Reged: 11/26/05

Loc: Alaska, USA
Re: Is there a better deal for 5K? new [Re: LLEEGE]
      #4463041 - 03/20/11 09:48 PM

Sorry Dan! I wish I did still have it to sell you : )

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