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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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TOM KIEHL
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 11/17/12

Loc: N.E. Ohio
Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount?
      #5872869 - 05/19/13 11:56 PM

I have a Meade 2080 LX3 that I would like to defork and use with this mount.I do visual astronomy only,and would like some coments about it's good points or bad, before I purchase one. Is a polar alignment scope a must have for visual work? It is an extra cost with the purchase of the mount.I heard that Celestron is going to discontinue the CG5GT and go with the VX mod. as a replacement, is that true?

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Spacetravelerx
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 12/23/12

Loc: New Mexico
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5872890 - 05/20/13 12:15 AM

I know my response will get flamed on...

Tom,

If you only do visual work, you may want to consider still sticking with a fork mount if you can. I know this means a new OTA and Fork combo.

I have both GEM and fork mounted telescopes. I love both for what they do. I remember reading forks were better for visual. After using both, I 100% agree with that claim. I find I have to get into some interesting contortions viewing with a GEM, that I simply do not have to with my fork mounted telescope. My gem is primarily used for ap and video astronomy with some visual.

I only mention this because you state you only do visual astronomy.

I cannot speak regarding the polar scope - I never had a need for one.


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Jon Isaacs
Postmaster
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Reged: 06/16/04

Loc: San Diego and Boulevard, CA
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5873080 - 05/20/13 04:24 AM

Quote:

I have a Meade 2080 LX3 that I would like to defork and use with this mount.I do visual astronomy only,and would like some coments about it's good points or bad, before I purchase one. Is a polar alignment scope a must have for visual work? It is an extra cost with the purchase of the mount.I heard that Celestron is going to discontinue the CG5GT and go with the VX mod. as a replacement, is that true?




I had a Meade 8 inch SCT mounted on a CG-5 ASGT. It worked very well for me. I did have a polar alignment scope but I don't think it was necessary.

As far as Fork versus GEM. ALT-AZ forks are probably somewhat better than GEMS in terms of ease of viewing but either one is considerably better than a fork on a wedge such as the LX-3. Less vibration and to view though.

One advantage of the GEM is you can use it with multiple scopes, with a Fork Mount, you are pretty much limited to the one scope.

Jon


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rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5873299 - 05/20/13 09:21 AM

Quote:

I have a Meade 2080 LX3 that I would like to defork and use with this mount.I do visual astronomy only,and would like some coments about it's good points or bad, before I purchase one. Is a polar alignment scope a must have for visual work? It is an extra cost with the purchase of the mount.I heard that Celestron is going to discontinue the CG5GT and go with the VX mod. as a replacement, is that true?




It is an excellent combo for visual work. I've used my old Celestron Ultima C8 OTA on one for nearly 10 years.

You don't need the polar scope. Ever. For visual, all you need to do is center Polaris in the hollow bore of the RA shaft. For imaging, there's the AllStar polar alignment in the HC.

One great advantage to a fork? You can use other telescopes on the mount. Oh, and if you are as broken down as I am, a GEM plus OTA is a lot easier to transport.

With the CG5 out of production, I do suggest you look at the new VX mount...


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labmand
sage
*****

Reged: 02/08/11

Loc: Michigan USA
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5873460 - 05/20/13 10:50 AM

I have a Ultima C8 that I deforked and now use on a Nexstar
goto alt/az mount, like it alot, but keep thinking about getting a
goto GEM, the "contortions viewing with a GEM" has stopped me so
far, Thanks Tom for the pros/cons post, like to here whats being used and why.


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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5873646 - 05/20/13 12:37 PM Attachment (7 downloads)

Only you can decide whether the VX is worth the extra $200.00 plus. Seems to be some "new release" issues popping up. The CG-5 ASGT is pretty much "debugged". And with a two year warranty I don't think you can go wrong.

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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: greju]
      #5873664 - 05/20/13 12:43 PM

If you are considering "used". I would ask about the warranty.

http://www.astromart.com/classifieds/details.asp?classified_id=820538


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: greju]
      #5873703 - 05/20/13 12:59 PM

Quote:

Only you can decide whether the VX is worth the extra $200.00 plus. Seems to be some "new release" issues popping up. The CG-5 ASGT is pretty much "debugged". And with a two year warranty I don't think you can go wrong.




The problems that have cropped up are mostly with the hand control, and you'd be just as likely to get a bad one with the CG5. At any rate, few people have had problems with the VX, and it is a substantial improvement over the CG5. Not that I don't love the CG5, but with the VX available for not much more... well... sayonara ol' girl.


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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5873727 - 05/20/13 01:09 PM

I might not be as informed on the VX as I thought I was. Could you elaborate further on the "substantial improvement".

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rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: greju]
      #5873764 - 05/20/13 01:25 PM

Quote:

I might not be as informed on the VX as I thought I was. Could you elaborate further on the "substantial improvement".




Redesigned head. New from the ground up. Appears substantially stronger.

Decent altitude/azimuth adjusters, finally.

That old "falls off when you look at it" RA housing cover is gone.

New motors and electronics.

Onboard RTC clock.

More... I could go on, but see my blog next Sunday for mo'.


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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5873779 - 05/20/13 01:30 PM

Thanks, I will. My favorite is still the one about your "pal".

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rmollise
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: greju]
      #5873784 - 05/20/13 01:32 PM

Quote:

Thanks, I will. My favorite is still the one about your "pal".




When I walked by my old Pal upstairs this morning, I gave her a pat.


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rmollise
Postmaster
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Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: rmollise]
      #5874035 - 05/20/13 03:47 PM

OH, and let me add...I have a passel of photos of the VX unboxing and a short video on my Facebook page...

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Spacetravelerx
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 12/23/12

Loc: New Mexico
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: Jon Isaacs]
      #5874263 - 05/20/13 05:17 PM

Quote:

Quote:

I have a Meade 2080 LX3 that I would like to defork and use with this mount.I do visual astronomy only,and would like some coments about it's good points or bad, before I purchase one. Is a polar alignment scope a must have for visual work? It is an extra cost with the purchase of the mount.I heard that Celestron is going to discontinue the CG5GT and go with the VX mod. as a replacement, is that true?




I had a Meade 8 inch SCT mounted on a CG-5 ASGT. It worked very well for me. I did have a polar alignment scope but I don't think it was necessary.

As far as Fork versus GEM. ALT-AZ forks are probably somewhat better than GEMS in terms of ease of viewing but either one is considerably better than a fork on a wedge such as the LX-3. Less vibration and to view though.

One advantage of the GEM is you can use it with multiple scopes, with a Fork Mount, you are pretty much limited to the one scope.

Jon






I don't know about the vibration thing. I have used a wedge with a fork for 22+ years and did not have a vibration problem at all.

I am also convinced the GEM/Fork discussion/debate is borderline "religious".

GEMs are great in that they break into smaller components, handle multiple OTAs and are great for AP. But they have their problems - visually they are not the best and meridian flip.

Forks with a wedge have their pluses. Great for visual (definitely better than GEMs), decent for AP and more portable. Negatives of course are you can't add multiple OTAs (though you can piggy back) and once you get bigger OTAs portability drops (though I do like Meade's new fork design which makes bigger OTAs easier to assemble).

Why not consider also selling the LX3 and getting a new telescope? LX90? LX200?


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mclewis1
Thread Killer
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: Spacetravelerx]
      #5874395 - 05/20/13 06:39 PM

Andrew,

Yup, pretty much.

The vibration thing is very scope specific. Some of the old Celestrons with the thin exposed arms, some LX90s, etc. did exhibit some vibration issues. The NexStar GPS, CPC and LX200 scopes seem to be nice and robust and have good motors and gears. I believe that there were bearing issues in some scopes that may have made any vibrations more noticeable. Early 14" LX200s had some of those issues. I wish all fork mounts with 10" or larger scopes used Meade's large scope design.

Same kinda situation with gems and the meridian flip, depending on the design and how it's executed some mounts have a real issue with the flip (interference between components on the mount) and others can easily track well past the meridian before they have to flip.

Wouldn't it be great if we all had lightweight mounts that tracked and pointed well, could mount any ota, didn't have to flip, didn't put the eyepiece in strange positions, were simple to setup and polar align and were relatively inexpensive?


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jrbarnett
Eyepiece Hooligan
*****

Reged: 02/28/06

Loc: Petaluma, CA
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5875013 - 05/21/13 12:04 AM

At the clearance price of $549, the best deal in GOTO EQ mount history. It's already on discount. Check Highpoint Scientific for example.

Skip the polar scope. It's useless. For visual putting Polaris in the borehole is more than good enough, and I believe the newest iteration of the firmware has a polar alignment routine that eliminates the utility of the polar scope for imaging.

Regards,

Jim


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TOM KIEHL
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 11/17/12

Loc: N.E. Ohio
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5875036 - 05/21/13 12:23 AM

Well, thanks for all the great input from you guys. I think I'll go for it,sounds like a good buy. I'll call Woodland camera and telescope tomorrow and ask about a warranty on that pair they have for sale on astromart.Tho both mounts look like they were rode hard and put away wet! Alot of greens for that condition. I Will most likely step up and buy new,from OPT if I can get them to pay S/H.
Talk about vibration,,,, it don't get anyworse than my early 2080 lx3 ,I quess I could get a better wedge, but still no go to and I can't switch OTA's
So once again thanks fella's for all the good tips ,T.K.

Edited by TOM KIEHL (05/21/13 12:30 AM)


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frito
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 10/05/12

Loc: Fremont, CA
Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: TOM KIEHL]
      #5875056 - 05/21/13 12:46 AM Attachment (12 downloads)

just got my used CG-5 today, of course clouds came to end the night early but works great. did a 2 star + 2 calibration star alignment and everything i threw at it, it went to without a hitch. looks a bit overkill with my scope now dubbed by me and a friend as the baby unicorn scope

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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: jrbarnett]
      #5875938 - 05/21/13 01:32 PM Attachment (11 downloads)

I think the best deal in GOTO EQ mount history happened during the end of March this year. I did post it at the time. Still a great deal but when you add in shipping not as much as a discount then has been offered in the past. If you want one better get it while it last's!!

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greju
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/13/05

Re: Pros? and Cons? of a Celestron CG 5 GT mount? new [Re: greju]
      #5876098 - 05/21/13 02:43 PM

Barnett is correct about the polar scope and ASPA though.

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