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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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BKBrown
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Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G?
      #5662496 - 02/04/13 09:14 PM

I am coming down to the wire on deciding which Alt-Az mount I will end up buying and am looking for some advice. I really like the look of the T-Rex and it appears plenty capable of handling the OTAs I have in mind (TEC 140 and C925) and holding them steady. The main drawback for me is the lack of tracking capability for when I want to use high magnifications. While the slo-mo cables look more than adequate, I am increasingly having trouble with my hands - possibly early signs of arthritis; so I don't know if I could twist the knobs all night...and I don't want to nudge. If something like the JMI Track-and-Train were available for the T-Rex this decision would be a no brainer for me. And then the Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G arrived! 44lb payload capacity, GoTo and tracking, and convertible to a GEM if I want to...it looks like a really good alternative. Either mount would ride on one of my Losmandy HD tripods with an adapter from Optical Supports and should be rock steady. I currently own two EQ-6Ps and know they can handle the OTAs quite nicely, I imagine the new model would do the same, particularly on the HD tripod. The price difference between these two mounts is negligible and I would be willing to spend some bucks motorizing the T-Rex if an option presented itself. So what do you think about the two contenders - the good, the bad, and the ugly? My interest is visual observing with whichever mount I get, it just needs to handle my scopes, have no more than 1-2 second settle down times, and be easy on my hands. Thanks!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/06/07

Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5663005 - 02/05/13 07:54 AM

If you need/want go-to and tracking, the choice would seem obvious...

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Darren Bly
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Reged: 07/24/06

Loc: Bakersfield, Ca
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5663476 - 02/05/13 12:06 PM

One of these things is not like the other.....

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Goodchild
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 12/31/08

Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Darren Bly]
      #5663578 - 02/05/13 01:19 PM

Although it would be nice to see more tracking alt-az mounts on the market. If you're a visual observer, it's hard to beat alt-az mounts for their simplicity, and tracking would be icing on the cake. The few that I am aware of are not my cup of tea as they seem to be too light duty or unreliable.

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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Goodchild]
      #5663992 - 02/05/13 05:21 PM

I have the Orion Sirius and the CGEM mounts and I bought a T-Rex a couple of months ago. The T-Rex is so easy to setup and carry around that I very seldom use the other mounts anymore. The T-Rex stays attached to the tripod and completely fits in a single bag along with the spreader and the Sky Commander. Even with everything in the bag it is relatively light weight. I can even carry the T-Rex in its bag and my C11 in its bag at the same time to my observing site without any real effort. Setup time is only a couple of minutes and then I am observing, which is a lot faster than the setup time for my other mounts. Don't even need vibration pads because there is no vibration. I highly recommend this mount.

The slow motion is silky smooth and you can turn the knobs with two fingers, but if you must have motors just hang on a while and they should be available.

I already had the JMI motors and controller on my Voyager mount so I decided to remove and test them on the T-Rex just by holding them in place and they work perfectly. So now I need to create the mounting plates, which are obviously different from the Voyager. I talked to JMI and they said they could create the mounting plates for me but I would have to send them my mount and that isn't happening. So instead I am creating the mounting plates myself and when I am done I am going to send one of them to JMI so they can create them for other people. Other than the correct mounting plate the coupler that goes between the motor shaft and the mount shaft will need to be slightly different from the voyager since the shaft on the T-Rex and the shaft on the Voyager are different sizes. I will be talking with them again shortly about getting the right coupler for the T-Rex.


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jrbarnett
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Reged: 02/28/06

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5664132 - 02/05/13 06:33 PM

Have you had a look at the Desert Sky Astro DSV-3?

Regards,

Jim


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BKBrown
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Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5664317 - 02/05/13 09:06 PM

Quote:

If you need/want go-to and tracking, the choice would seem obvious...




The options are limited Unk But the T-Rex at least has push-to and just looks soooo nice...

Clear Skies,
Brian


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Goodchild]
      #5664321 - 02/05/13 09:09 PM

Thanks Darren and Royce...decisions,decisions, decisions

Clear Skies,
Brian


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BKBrown
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Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5664325 - 02/05/13 09:11 PM

Thanks Lane, I will give this some serious consideration.

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Terrance
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/11/04

Loc: Near Portland Or.
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5664395 - 02/05/13 09:57 PM

Is the Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G even available for actual order yet? I thought it was still aways down the road.

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BKBrown
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Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5664409 - 02/05/13 10:07 PM

Quote:

Have you had a look at the Desert Sky Astro DSV-3?

Regards,

Jim




Hi Jim,

I had not considered this mount until you mentioned it. Curious, I went to their web site and found...a really nice piece of kit! Can I assume this is the one you picked up? The specs look good, have you had your TEC140 on board yet? My biggest concern would be the slo-motion controls - I would want to install longer ones since I doubt I could easily reach the knobs from behind my TEC. Definitely a mount worth considering, especially for the price

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5664571 - 02/06/13 01:53 AM Attachment (122 downloads)

Here is a pic of the TRex with the AT 152 on board.

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Lane
Post Laureate


Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5664586 - 02/06/13 02:15 AM

With the T-Rex you get two sets of slo-mo handles, the solid aluminum ones that stick out 6 inches and then the 22" flex cables that you see in the previous picture.

You also get the handle in the picture to move the scope around so you don't have to push on the telescope. Unfortunately the handle is grey not black. It does have a black foam grip at the end.

ADM dual saddle plate is standard.

The AT152 with rings, 2" diagonal, and the 31mm Nagler is about 28 lbs and the mount has no trouble with this. Vibration pads are not needed at all.


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NorthBoundTrain
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 11/23/11

Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Terrance]
      #5664624 - 02/06/13 03:02 AM

Quote:

Is the Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G even available for actual order yet? I thought it was still aways down the road.




Expected Ship Date: 02/16/2013


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
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Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5665513 - 02/06/13 03:27 PM

Yep. I looked at the Half Hitch, T-Rex and DM-4/DM-6 options, and ended up ordering both a DSV-1 (quick look) and DSV-3 with encoders (higher capacity camping mount). I was able to buy both of those mounts, with multiple options, for less than what a DM-6 or T-Rex would have cost me. I'm a few weeks out from delivery (they are built to order), so I won't know how good or bad the mounts are until then, but as you said, when I looked at the website I was impressed with the design details; particularly the type and placement of the bearings.

My intended use is for bi-annual dark sky trips where dependency on large batteries carries with it a host of related problems (i.e., the need for solar recharging gear, and the space commanded by a big battery to name two). Ideally it will be able to carry the TEC 140 and/or a C9/C9.25/Mewlon 210.

I'll provide a thorough evaluation once I've received the mounts.

Regards,

Jim


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BKBrown
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Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5665593 - 02/06/13 04:18 PM

Thanks Jim, I'll look forward to your review

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Goodchild
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 12/31/08

Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5665690 - 02/06/13 05:19 PM

Yesterday I purchased a Celestron CG-4 mount that a gentleman had replaced with a new DSV-3 mount. That DSV-3 is a thing of beauty and looks very solid. Much bigger than it looks in the pics. Very well machined and much thought given to detail. I'm afraid that I am going to have to purchase one down the road. The only flaw that I detected was that the bubble level is on top of the mount and therefore very difficult to read. And I wasn't able to test the mount, just look at it. But I really liked what I saw.

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t.r.
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Loc: Upstate NY
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Goodchild]
      #5681713 - 02/15/13 02:51 PM

Lane, great looking setup, but it looks like balance/tipping point could be an issue there. Is that the case? T-Rex'x are on sale right now 5% off for those who didn't know.

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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: t.r.]
      #5682292 - 02/15/13 08:28 PM

Quote:

Lane, great looking setup, but it looks like balance/tipping point could be an issue there. Is that the case? T-Rex'x are on sale right now 5% off for those who didn't know.




No problems at all. It is very stable even when turned so most of the OTA weight is positioned between the tripod legs.

My C11 and the AT 152 both work perfectly on this mount. To bad they did not make an optional counterweight bar for the other side, it could have easily been done and then you could put a C14 on this mount. It is built like a tank so I am sure it could handle the weight, but the balance would definitely be off. Anyway it achieves my goal of a totally quiet mount with slo-mo controls that can carry my biggest scopes and still have a very fast setup/takedown time. Being able to just fold it up and put in the carrying bag is a huge time saver.

I think the only bad thing I would say about this mount is that it cost to much.


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Ira
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5683515 - 02/16/13 01:17 PM

I have had a T-Rex for about a year now. Very stable and capable mount. Given all of the outreach I do I mostly use an iOptron MiniTower Pro. The tracking and goto convenience are hard to beat when you're using a scope with total novices. Most people can't operate the slo-mo controls, or are too timid to try. Unfortunately, the MT Pro won't carry a very large load. I use a C8 on the primary side and an 80mm refractor on the secondary side. But it holds those well. I don't know if iOptron still sells the MT series still.

/Ira


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BKBrown
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Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: NorthBoundTrain]
      #5685016 - 02/17/13 11:34 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Is the Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G even available for actual order yet? I thought it was still aways down the road.




Expected Ship Date: 02/16/2013




FYI...now amended on the Orion web site to 05/02/2013 So what's with these guys, are we about to relive the Meade mount fiasco again? My attention has just focused down on the T-Rex with an honest hard look at the the DSV-3 as an alternative. I am inclining toward the T-Rex due to some recent experiments on motor control done by a fellow CNer...I really like the idea of a powered option. That with Sky Commander would pretty much fulfill my basic requirements.

Clear Skies,
Brian


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10gauge
sage


Reged: 10/31/10

Loc: Boston
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5685872 - 02/17/13 08:10 PM

Hello Brian! People who already own the Skywatcher version of the EQ-6 Pro AZ seem so preoccupied with the GEM mode that they aren't posting anything useful for us in the alt-az mode. I wish I knew better how the Pro AZ feels in alt-az mode compared to the top dedicated mounts? I agree, Orion has pushed the date up 3 times. I won't be surprised if they push it up further. I knew they would be overwhelmed with the pre-orders, especially with the promising initial reports within the past month.

I've gone full circle with GEM and Alt-Az mounts during the past year while I was waiting for my TEC 140 to be built - Atlas, G11, EQ-6 AZ, IEQ45, DM-6, T-Rex, Unistar Deluxe, DSV-3, Orion AZ, Nova Hitch, ES, M150, etc.
Assessing all the pros and cons, and based on smoothness, weight capacity, slow motion, quick slew, push to, encoder adaptation, durability, I came to the conclusion that the T-Rex would be the ideal mount for a TEC 140 and an eventual C11. In your case, since you already have an Atlas GEM, a T-Rex would be ideal.


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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5687059 - 02/18/13 02:46 PM

In regard to the T-Rex motors:

I talked with JMI and they don't feel that enough people will buy the T-Rex to make it worth their while to create a specific motor solution for it.

You can still buy the train-n-track and you can order it with the correct motor shaft connectors for the T-Rex, but you will have to get a little sheet of aluminum from a hardware store to make your own mounting brackets. They are really simple to make, just a pair of sheet metal cutters (tin snips) and a power drill is all you need. Maybe some black paint to make it look good. I am going to paint mine with black hammer textured paint.

I already have the JMI motors and I ordered the motor shaft connectors last Thursday. Just waiting for those to arrive to put the whole thing together.

Those little motor shaft connectors cost me $12.50 each. Seemed a bit pricey to me.


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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ira]
      #5687077 - 02/18/13 02:53 PM

You can probably motorize the DSV-3 as well. We need to get someone to shoot a detail shot of the shaft area for both AZ and ALT to see where a motor mount plate could be attached. On the T-Rex there are 4 bolts that hold the slo-mo worm gear cover in place, I plan to attach the motor mounting plate to two of those bolts.

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Ira
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Reged: 08/22/10

Loc: Mitzpe Ramon, Israel
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5687583 - 02/18/13 07:09 PM

Why not ask Barry, who makes the T-Rex, if he will make the mount for the JMI motors? He would have more interest in having that option available than JMI.

/Ira


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EFT
Vendor - Deep Space Products
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Reged: 05/07/07

Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ira]
      #5688804 - 02/19/13 12:27 PM

Quote:

Why not ask Barry, who makes the T-Rex, if he will make the mount for the JMI motors? He would have more interest in having that option available than JMI.

/Ira




I will be looking into this again. Besides the motor mount, the real trick is getting a motor than can run direct drive rather than having to implement a belt or gear drive (which simply complicates things). That requires getting a fair amount of torque from a fairly small motor.


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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5689128 - 02/19/13 03:45 PM

The JMI motors work great without belts or gears, but they are not fast like motors on a CGEM. They are intented only to replace the slo-mo part of the scope. So you would still manually push the mount to a constellation and then use the JMI motors to scan around in that constellation, which I think is what everyone wants to do with these motors. Motors like this are very very quiet, someone standing 20 feet away could not hear these motors at all.

I will have my homemade/JMI solution finished soon and will post pictures. JMI did ask me to send them pictures and dimensions so they might be planning to go ahead and make the mount brackets. It just depends on how many people email them and say they are interested in putting a track-n-train on the T-Rex.


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5691687 - 02/20/13 08:21 PM

Thanks 10gauge and Lane So I went ahead and ordered the T-Rex...now to concentrate on the motorization. Take it away Ed!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5691716 - 02/20/13 08:34 PM Attachment (50 downloads)

So now on to the next part. This pic shows the Manny Miles mod for the Porta II that allows the OTA to sit more "naturally" in the saddle. You out there Manny? How about doing this for the T-Rex as a potential project?

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Lane
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Reged: 11/19/07

Loc: Frisco, Texas
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5691843 - 02/20/13 10:10 PM

Well JMI got some emails from T-Rex owners and are now more interested in the mount. They might make the motor mounts after all. I am going to help them out by supplying them one of my mounts as a guide. We will just have to wait and see if they follow through.

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10gauge
sage


Reged: 10/31/10

Loc: Boston
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5691979 - 02/20/13 11:27 PM

Congratulations Brian on the T-Rex! Looking forward to your next AP photos...
BTW, Orion heard you - they moved up the date by 2 wks to 4/23/2013.

George

Edited by 10gauge (02/20/13 11:32 PM)


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BKBrown
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Reged: 08/23/09

Loc: Northern Virginia, USA
Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5693493 - 02/21/13 08:23 PM

Quote:

Well JMI got some emails from T-Rex owners and are now more interested in the mount. They might make the motor mounts after all. I am going to help them out by supplying them one of my mounts as a guide. We will just have to wait and see if they follow through.




That's cool Lane, I sure hope they do come through...if not we'll figure out a solution.

Clear Skies
Brian


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5693503 - 02/21/13 08:29 PM

Quote:

Congratulations Brian on the T-Rex! Looking forward to your next AP photos...
BTW, Orion heard you - they moved up the date by 2 wks to 4/23/2013.

George




Thanks George The T-Rex looks awesome and I already have a few ideas for modding it. I'd like to fill my waiting time imaging but winter seems to have finally caught up to us in Virginia and the seeing is trash. I think the jet stream is parked over my house, and they promise us a "wintery mix" here tomorrow
That's funny about Orion; wish we really did have that kind of influence...

Clear Skies,
Brian


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thesubwaypusher
scholastic sledgehammer
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5698536 - 02/24/13 04:28 PM

I am not sure I am understanding why you guys are interested in motorizing the T-Rex. The whole point of having it to begin with is to enjoy the simplicity, as you say Lane, it just pops out and back into the bag almost fully assembled. If you add motors, you'll have to carry a battery. Why not just get a regular eq mount then?

The T-Rex is a fantastic mount. It is VERY fun to use. I sold mine a while back, but am contemplating another because I miss playing with it. It handled my Edge HD 11 with ease. The manual workings of it make you one with the mount. Adding motors would destroy that feeling, and complicate things. The Sky Commander is fun and more than adequate for an altaz mount.

Good luck, Chris


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thesubwaypusher
scholastic sledgehammer
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5698544 - 02/24/13 04:31 PM

Brian, here is all you need to know about the Rex...

http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=2699


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wrz0170
sage
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Reged: 03/08/12

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: thesubwaypusher]
      #5698811 - 02/24/13 07:26 PM

Quote:

Brian, here is all you need to know about the Rex...

http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=2699




This review was a huge help in making my decision in favor of the T-Rex. I don't have any regrets. As mentioned before, it is a joy to use. Even the wife remarks how easy the controls are. It handles my SV80ST as well as my C9.25 Edge.


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: thesubwaypusher]
      #5698821 - 02/24/13 07:37 PM

Quote:

I am not sure I am understanding why you guys are interested in motorizing the T-Rex. The whole point of having it to begin with is to enjoy the simplicity, as you say Lane, it just pops out and back into the bag almost fully assembled. If you add motors, you'll have to carry a battery. Why not just get a regular eq mount then?

The T-Rex is a fantastic mount. It is VERY fun to use. I sold mine a while back, but am contemplating another because I miss playing with it. It handled my Edge HD 11 with ease. The manual workings of it make you one with the mount. Adding motors would destroy that feeling, and complicate things. The Sky Commander is fun and more than adequate for an altaz mount.

Good luck, Chris




Hi Chris,

I understand where you are coming from but different folks have different requirements. Adding a battery to the gear is nothing compared to what I have to do when taking a complete Atlas to the field...the T-Rex will be in business just as quick with the motors as without. I often do a lot of high power observing during a session and that is why I want slow motion control, but I have increasing arthritis issues with my hands. Turning knobs can become painful after a while, not so pushing a button and that's why I want the motors. I will still be able to set up with minimal effort, slew quickly, find my targets with Sky Commander, AND observe at high power for long periods if I want to; so there is a method to the madness. I'm not afraid to mod a piece of gear if it will make it more convenient and efficient for me; the T-Rex will be no exception. And as you said, it handled your C11 Edge with no problem and that is one of the OTAs I have as well, also a C925 and a TEC 140 - and the T-Rex should be just the visual observing ticket for all of them

Clear Skies,
Brian


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: thesubwaypusher]
      #5698823 - 02/24/13 07:38 PM

Quote:

Brian, here is all you need to know about the Rex...

http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=2699




Thanks Chris!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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thesubwaypusher
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: wrz0170]
      #5700135 - 02/25/13 04:06 PM

This makes me very happy. Thanks dude!

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thesubwaypusher
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5700160 - 02/25/13 04:18 PM

Oh, an Atlas and counterweights. Okay, now I understand your comparison better Brian. Good luck with the motors and please post pictures as I and many others would be curious as to how they work.

You are going to love the Rex, and Ed and Barry provide excellent support. Just make sure you get the right color!

Good luck with your project. Actually, it sounds like fun!

Thanks, Chris


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: thesubwaypusher]
      #5700466 - 02/25/13 07:40 PM

Not talking about loud goto motors here, just simple slo motion motors, very quiet and powered by a single 9 volt battery in the hand controller. My main goal is a super quiet mount for use at campsites, but capable of handling a big scope and easy to setup.

Also these motors are not fast, you still push the mount to the general location you want to view and then use the motors. I have not timed it but it would probably take somewhere around 10 seconds to move the scope from Rigel to Sirius.

Edited by Lane (02/26/13 04:50 PM)


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thesubwaypusher
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5701705 - 02/26/13 01:42 PM

Understood. I would like to see your finished product!

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: thesubwaypusher]
      #5702057 - 02/26/13 04:50 PM

You will

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5702558 - 02/26/13 09:52 PM

What would be an upgrade saddle to the Orion Pro AZ/EQ? Is the ADM DSAD-EQ6 Losmandy saddle ideal?

Thanks


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5702729 - 02/26/13 11:48 PM

Quote:

What would be an upgrade saddle to the Orion Pro AZ/EQ? Is the ADM DSAD-EQ6 Losmandy saddle ideal?

Thanks




I'm not sure if anyone has provided any measurements on the AZ/EQ yet to know if the ADM saddle will fit on one or either end of the mount yet.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5703018 - 02/27/13 08:02 AM

Good point. I also wonder if including encoders has impacted the ability to mod the Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G...

Clear Skies, Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5703085 - 02/27/13 09:02 AM

Quote:

Good point. I also wonder if including encoders has impacted the ability to mod the Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G...

Clear Skies, Brian




What mod would you be thinking about?


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5703930 - 02/27/13 05:49 PM

Hi Ed,

I'm a fan of the ADM dual saddles for instance...would they be doable? How about putting in Telescope Drive Master (TDM)?

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5703987 - 02/27/13 06:19 PM

I can tell you for certain the ADM can make a saddle and drill custom holes to your specifications. I ordered a saddle from ADM a few years ago and sent them a detailed diagram with dimensions for the custom holes I wanted drilled and there was no extra charge either.

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5704053 - 02/27/13 07:01 PM

Quote:

Hi Ed,

I'm a fan of the ADM dual saddles for instance...would they be doable? How about putting in Telescope Drive Master (TDM)?

Clear Skies,
Brian




I'm sure that ADM will come up with something. I don't know about the TDM but I would think that the connection would be similar to the Atlas since the same polar scope is in use.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5704219 - 02/27/13 08:35 PM

Ed or Brian, I keep forgetting to ask... How much does the T-Rex mount weigh without the tripod?
Brian, which color did you opt for on the T-Rex? I can't decide which color to order for my new TEC 140.
Oh and BTW, Orion has the Pro AZ EQ-6 "In Stock."

George


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5704246 - 02/27/13 08:50 PM

Quote:

Ed or Brian, I keep forgetting to ask... How much does the T-Rex mount weigh without the tripod?
Brian, which color did you opt for on the T-Rex? I can't decide which color to order for my new TEC 140.
Oh and BTW, Orion has the Pro AZ EQ-6 "In Stock."

George




Hi George,

I don't recollect the weight off the top of my head, maybe Ed can help there. I went with the black T-Rex because I plan to put it on a black Losmandy HD tripod. Wow, funny how the Orion delivery date changed so quickly, I wonder what happened...

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5704309 - 02/27/13 09:28 PM

Quote:

Ed or Brian, I keep forgetting to ask... How much does the T-Rex mount weigh without the tripod?
Brian, which color did you opt for on the T-Rex? I can't decide which color to order for my new TEC 140.
Oh and BTW, Orion has the Pro AZ EQ-6 "In Stock."

George




The head is about 22 pounds.


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Reged: 10/31/10

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5704489 - 02/27/13 11:01 PM

Thank you Brian and Ed!

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: 10gauge]
      #5709451 - 03/02/13 07:51 PM

Ok, I finished the bracket and tested it on the TRex, works perfect. I sent pictures and specifications to JMI. I told them I would send them the bracket and one sample of the replacement bolts if they want it. So now just waiting to hear back from them.

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5709555 - 03/02/13 08:58 PM

Quote:

Ok, I finished the bracket and tested it on the TRex, works perfect. I sent pictures and specifications to JMI. I told them I would send them the bracket and one sample of the replacement bolts if they want it. So now just waiting to hear back from them.




Pictures!


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5709584 - 03/02/13 09:16 PM

Count me in for my T-Rex.

/Ira


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Lane
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ira]
      #5709794 - 03/03/13 12:32 AM

I will post some pictures in a few days when I get back to my computer. I just have my iPad with me right now.

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5710542 - 03/03/13 12:25 PM

Quote:

Ok, I finished the bracket and tested it on the TRex, works perfect. I sent pictures and specifications to JMI. I told them I would send them the bracket and one sample of the replacement bolts if they want it. So now just waiting to hear back from them.




Sounds great Lane, I look forward to seeing the pix

Clear Skies,
Brian


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SteveE
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5715548 - 03/05/13 10:48 PM

A little late maybe but I wanted to put in a word about Desert Sky Astro's DSV-3.

I've owned one for a few months and have used it extensively in many different configurations: TEC 140; C9.25; Edge 1100; TEC 140/C9.25 dual mount; C9.25/Tak TSA 102 dual mount. In each case, using the Quick Balance System that is standard with the mount, performance was ultra smooth from horizon to zenith.

You will need to read the instructions but you will have no problems assembling and balancing. I did a dry run during the day and this one rehearsal was all I needed. I can set it up at night with little effort.

Motions are effortless. I can push the mount in altitude or azimuth with one finger. If this freedom is too sensitive for you you can apply some friction with a simple turn of a clutch lever. At high magnifications I am able to keep the object in the FOV as if the mount knows where to go.

Changing eyepieces may require you to lock the alt axis but it works. You will need to be careful not to nudge the mount in azimuth while doing so. Of course, if you do nudge it you will only need to move the mount in azimuth to find the object again. Once you lock the alt axis and place the heavier/lighter eyepiece you move the counterweight on the QBS to a proper spot, unlock the alt axis and resume viewing. You will need an evening perhaps to get used to it but it's easy and becomes intuitive after a short session. I prefer this counter-weighted system to simply adjusting tension as I have done on other manual alt/az mounts. Yes, you need to learn it but you will learn it and in short time. The reward is an invisible mount capable of considerable capacity either in single or dual scope mode.

The Quick Balance system can be mounted to a top rail on the rings of one of the scopes while in dual mode. Operation is just as simple and performance is just as impeccable.

Hope this is not more than you needed to hear!

Steve


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: SteveE]
      #5715649 - 03/05/13 11:58 PM

Thanks Steve! The DSV-3 looks great and I might consider a lighter version in the future for my grab-and-go, but my quest took an unanticipated turn last week. The folks at Hands On Optics e-mailed to tell me that they would (unexpectedly in view of the earlier Orion announcement) be getting an Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G by the weekend. So, despite having a T-Rex on order (due here on Friday) I ended up trading in my field Atlas for the new model. Soon I should be able to do some comparison testing of these two mounts which I will share here. Thanks again for the info

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5715745 - 03/06/13 01:48 AM Attachment (57 downloads)

Here is a picture I took of my homemade T-Rex motor mount bracket with a JMI motor attached. I replaced the M5-30mm bolts that hold the bracket to the mount with M5-35mm bolts. I also use several washers to keep the bracket from scratching the mount. The mount bracket contains slots not holes so to remove it or install it only takes about 1 minute. Just loosen the shaft collar with a hex wrench then loosen the two bolts on top about one full turn each and it slides off or on easily. I tested it and it will fit into the carrying case without removing the motors.

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5716428 - 03/06/13 01:42 PM

Looks like a very straightforward Mk I mounting plate Lane, shouldn't be too hard for folks to get their hands around the concept. Thanks for the pix


Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5716692 - 03/06/13 03:44 PM

I sent this picture and several others to JMI along with the exact dimensions they will need. They might make the mounting plates for us, but I have not heard back from them yet. I will let you know if and when I do.

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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5726617 - 03/11/13 07:03 PM

I know a couple of you are interested so I thought I would post an update:

I have had no response to the emails and pictures I sent to JMI early last week, so I am not sure it they are just too busy right now or if they changed their minds again and aren't interested in making the motor mounts for the T-Rex.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5726814 - 03/11/13 08:38 PM

Quote:

I know a couple of you are interested so I thought I would post an update:

I have had no response to the emails and pictures I sent to JMI early last week, so I am not sure it they are just too busy right now or if they changed their minds again and aren't interested in making the motor mounts for the T-Rex.




They may be waiting for me at this point. I'm hoping to get a TNT in here soon and see what we can come up with for a retrofit and/or a system for new mounts.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5727147 - 03/11/13 11:40 PM

That sounds great. Maybe you can come up with something much better than mine.

I personally wish telescope makers would think about these things in advance. If the worm gear housing just had some kind of short post sticking out next to the shaft. Then the motor mounting could be nothing but a small adapter around the front of the motor shaft with a socket for that post. Then you could push on and pull off the motor and only have to tighten one shaft screw in the process. The post in socket would keep the motor from rotating and that is all the mount needs to do because the shaft collar holds the motor in place. It would look much cleaner and make switching from the motor to the handles a lot easier.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5749101 - 03/22/13 06:24 AM

Any news on the JMI motor kits, will 'Train & Track' come to fruition?

I just ordered a T-Rex today which will carry my Tak TSA120/SV F50W2 combo with Argo Navis DTC to come a little later.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Kunama]
      #5749427 - 03/22/13 10:40 AM

Quote:

Any news on the JMI motor kits, will 'Train & Track' come to fruition?




I have the TNT system now and will try to get to designing an appropriate attaching system as soon as possible.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5749747 - 03/22/13 01:39 PM

Thanks Ed, it would be nice if you can make it more compact than mine so it isn't as much of an eyesore on a beautiful mount.

The key thing in my mind is to make it easy to attach and remove. It would be nice if we could have some small socket plate that was permanently mounted to the bolts on the worm housing and then the motor mount would just click into the socket. This would also solve the problem of the motor being in the way of the saddle bolt, because you could mount the scope first and then attach the motor. That would also mean the motor could attach closer to the mount since it does not matter if it gets in the way of the saddle bolt. I only mounted it at the end of that shaft adapter (that comes with the flexicable) to keep the motor out of the way of the saddle bolt.

Whatever you come up with I will be buying it since I am sure it will look better than mine.

Thanks for taking an interest in this project.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Lane]
      #5749826 - 03/22/13 02:16 PM

Quote:

Thanks Ed, it would be nice if you can make it more compact than mine so it isn't as much of an eyesore on a beautiful mount.

The key thing in my mind is to make it easy to attach and remove. It would be nice if we could have some small socket plate that was permanently mounted to the bolts on the worm housing and then the motor mount would just click into the socket. This would also solve the problem of the motor being in the way of the saddle bolt, because you could mount the scope first and then attach the motor. That would also mean the motor could attach closer to the mount since it does not matter if it gets in the way of the saddle bolt. I only mounted it at the end of that shaft adapter (that comes with the flexicable) to keep the motor out of the way of the saddle bolt.

Whatever you come up with I will be buying it since I am sure it will look better than mine.

Thanks for taking an interest in this project.




I'm going to do my best to see what we can do to make it look good. That will probably be the toughest part.


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #5753447 - 03/24/13 09:29 AM Attachment (19 downloads)

Thanks for the effort Ed (and Lane!), I think it is worthwhile to take the time to make the mounting brackets blend in with the rest of the mount...it's a beautiful piece of gear. The slow motion controls are incredibly smooth and easy to use, but I think I will still need push button control for long hours in the cold so you can count me in for a set whenever they are ready.

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #6146960 - 10/19/13 04:04 PM

What happened to the JMI motor kits for the T-Rex? Are they going to make them or has the project been abandoned?

I am planning to buy a T-Rex and the only one thing makes me hesitate to do so is the lack of tracking. It would be so great if this could be added.
If JMI is not making a motor drive, I would certainly like to try to make one for myself. But how?

Heinz

Edited by Ryuno (10/19/13 04:33 PM)


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ryuno]
      #6147085 - 10/19/13 05:16 PM

Quote:

What happened to the JMI motor kits for the T-Rex? Are they going to make them or has the project been abandoned?

I am planning to buy a T-Rex and the only one thing makes me hesitate to do so is the lack of tracking. It would be so great if this could be added.
If JMI is not making a motor drive, I would certainly like to try to make one for myself. But how?

Heinz




We will actually have a new goto kit for the T-REX made by Avalon at ASAE next month.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147120 - 10/19/13 05:27 PM

Thank you, Ed. Sounds great.
I found the Avalon-website on the Internet but nothing about the kit you mentioned. Is there any information accessible at this time, such as images, description, specs, pricing?

Heinz

Edited by Ryuno (10/19/13 05:43 PM)


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ryuno]
      #6147158 - 10/19/13 05:44 PM

Quote:

Thank you, Ed. Sounds great.
I cannot find Avalon on the Internet. Is there any information accessible at this time, such as images, description, specs, pricing?

Heinz




Avalon will be producing the kit and it will likely be available through Kokusai Kohki. We don't have the price established yet and there probably will not be anything specific on the websites until after November, but the controller will be displayed in a ad for the Avalon M-zero mount in the next Astronomy Technology Today, since it will use the same controller. You can find the Avalon website and M-zero here: Avalon Instruments.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147194 - 10/19/13 06:01 PM

Thank you again, Ed. I found the website. Avalon's mounts look wonderful, but seem to be clearly on the pricey side. I understand you don't know the actual sales price of the Goto Kit, but maybe you could give me a hint about the order of magnitude the price will be in, so I have some idea about the kind of future investment I have to expect, if I buy the T-Rex. For instance: Significantly under 1000$, around 1000$, or significantly above 1000$.(The latter two would probably be too much for me.)

Best regards
Heinz


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ryuno]
      #6147238 - 10/19/13 06:33 PM

Quote:

Thank you again, Ed. I found the website. Avalon's mounts look wonderful, but seem to be clearly on the pricey side. I understand you don't know the actual sales price of the Goto Kit, but maybe you could give me a hint about the order of magnitude the price will be in, so I have some idea about the kind of future investment I have to expect, if I buy the T-Rex. For instance: Significantly under 1000$, around 1000$, or significantly above 1000$.(The latter two would probably be too much for me.)

Best regards
Heinz




Probably around $1100, but it will be full goto, not just tracking. Since they are also making the motor attachment, it may be possible to get those for use with a less expensive, non-goto, tracking system as well.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147272 - 10/19/13 07:00 PM

Thank you, this is very interesting. I think I'll definitely get the T-Rex. Looking forward to it.
Have nice Sunday (here in Japan it is Sunday morning and I am off to work.

Heinz


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BKBrown
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147608 - 10/19/13 11:07 PM

Interesting news Ed, I'll be looking for the announcements and info. Thanks!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Kunama
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147697 - 10/20/13 12:26 AM

Quote:


Probably around $1100, but it will be full goto, not just tracking. Since they are also making the motor attachment, it may be possible to get those for use with a less expensive, non-goto, tracking system as well.




That is music to my ears Ed. It is such a good mount to use as is but the addition of full GoTo will save me buying another mount for 'outreach' events.

Hope this comes about.

I can see it now, this ensemble with full goto


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EFT
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Kunama]
      #6147728 - 10/20/13 12:55 AM

Now that is a pretty setup!

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Kunama
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6147845 - 10/20/13 04:11 AM

Quote:

Now that is a pretty setup!



Thanks Ed, it works well for me, I use a 23mm ep in the Stellarvue,
an 8mm LVW in the FS60CB and from 3.5mm to 42mm LVWs in the TSA.
At the moment I have the miniMax DTC but am changing to the Argo Navis.
The Nikon 80-200 F2.8 / D7000 works well to show visitors the colours of celestial objects.

I have also incorporated a Slew Handle which I made to your design in my spare time. (Sorry for copying your design !!! )




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Tamiji Homma
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6148194 - 10/20/13 10:52 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Thank you, Ed. Sounds great.
I cannot find Avalon on the Internet. Is there any information accessible at this time, such as images, description, specs, pricing?

Heinz




Avalon will be producing the kit and it will likely be available through Kokusai Kohki. We don't have the price established yet and there probably will not be anything specific on the websites until after November, but the controller will be displayed in a ad for the Avalon M-zero mount in the next Astronomy Technology Today, since it will use the same controller. You can find the Avalon website and M-zero here: Avalon Instruments.




Hi Ed,

Interesting development. I am planning to attend ASAE, probably just Saturday.
I am looking forward to talking to you at ASAE.

Tammy


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Ryuno
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Tamiji Homma]
      #6149402 - 10/21/13 08:26 AM

Well, the decision has been taken. I just ordered a T-Rex for the Mewlon 250.

It seems, Avalon is going to produce a tracking motor for the mount, no Goto yet. This is the latest information I have from Barry Gooley of Kokusai Kohki, the developer of the T-Rex, who called Avalon today. Therefore, I am going to use a Sky Commander and SkySafari to find the objects. This is absolutely crucial in light polluted Tokyo. First light will most probably be Jupiter from my bedroom window. I know, I know, tube currents, warm air in the window and so on. But this is my only chance right now, if I don't want to wait until I some day have opportunity to take the scope to a dark place.

Best regards
Heinz


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Ryuno
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Kunama]
      #6149421 - 10/21/13 08:42 AM

Quote:

Now that is a pretty setup!



Yes, real pretty. Refractors are the most beautiful telescopes after all.
Congratulations.
How does this nice brass-telescope perform?

Best regards
Heinz


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EFT
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ryuno]
      #6149482 - 10/21/13 09:14 AM

Quote:

Well, the decision has been taken. I just ordered a T-Rex for the Mewlon 250.

It seems, Avalon is going to produce a tracking motor for the mount, no Goto yet. This is the latest information I have from Barry Gooley of Kokusai Kohki, the developer of the T-Rex, who called Avalon today. Therefore, I am going to use a Sky Commander and SkySafari to find the objects. This is absolutely crucial in light polluted Tokyo. First light will most probably be Jupiter from my bedroom window. I know, I know, tube currents, warm air in the window and so on. But this is my only chance right now, if I don't want to wait until I some day have opportunity to take the scope to a dark place.

Best regards
Heinz




I have to correct myself on this. The Avalon system will first be released in a smart tracker mode that will allow it to keep objects tracked by memorizing corrections made by the observer using the hand controller. The hardware will be goto-ready with those functions being worked on for release by firmware next year.

Sorry for the confusion on that.


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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: EFT]
      #6150298 - 10/21/13 05:43 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Well, the decision has been taken. I just ordered a T-Rex for the Mewlon 250.

It seems, Avalon is going to produce a tracking motor for the mount, no Goto yet. This is the latest information I have from Barry Gooley of Kokusai Kohki, the developer of the T-Rex, who called Avalon today. Therefore, I am going to use a Sky Commander and SkySafari to find the objects. This is absolutely crucial in light polluted Tokyo. First light will most probably be Jupiter from my bedroom window. I know, I know, tube currents, warm air in the window and so on. But this is my only chance right now, if I don't want to wait until I some day have opportunity to take the scope to a dark place.

Best regards
Heinz




I have to correct myself on this. The Avalon system will first be released in a smart tracker mode that will allow it to keep objects tracked by memorizing corrections made by the observer using the hand controller. The hardware will be goto-ready with those functions being worked on for release by firmware next year.

Sorry for the confusion on that.




No worries Ed! So this initial solution sounds like JMI TnT tech. I guess by the time the whole package is complete the price will be up there, but will the "phase one" now followed by "phase two" later approach help break down the cost? Any thoughts?

Clear Skies,
Brian

Edited by BKBrown (10/21/13 05:47 PM)


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EFT
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: BKBrown]
      #6150374 - 10/21/13 06:33 PM

Since the hardware will be all ready for the goto upgrade by firmware, I think they are satisfied to sell it all the full price to start with rather than charge for a firmware update down the line. This is all up to the manufacturer though, not me. Until I see how the motor mounts have been designed, I don't know if it will be reasonable (if possible) to obtain just the motor mounts along for use with a different drive system.

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Kunama
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Re: T-Rex or Orion Atlas Pro AZ/EQ-G? new [Re: Ryuno]
      #6150899 - 10/22/13 12:05 AM

Thanks Heinz, The brass refractor is a c1870s Berry&Mackay 3.25" F16 Fraunhofer Doublet with quite incredible colour correction for its vintage.
Great to view the moon through such old glass.


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