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The iOptron MiniTower - Part 2

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#1 mloffland

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 12:14 PM

The iOptron MiniTower - Part 2

#2 Starman1

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 03:15 PM

I currently own and use one of these mounts with a 127mm Maksutov on board.
John's review is fair and unbiased.
One strong caveat to users: super-tighten the dovetail screw knob when your telescope is attached. The dovetail fitting is very smooth and slick, and any scope with weight will slide right out of the dovetail unless the screw pressure is set quite high. A small "safety" screw in your dovetail would be a wise thing to have.
Overall, an easy mount to use.

#3 Covey32

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 05:18 PM

Just be careful when you "super tighten" the dovetail screw...I snapped mine right off about a month ago and am still waiting for Ioptron to send me another one.
:shameonyou:

#4 Starman1

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 08:31 PM

Hank,
You must be the guy in the garage who tightens lug nuts with his fingers and everybody else needs to use a wrench to loosen. :lol:

#5 Covey32

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Posted 16 January 2010 - 10:29 AM

Actually, the Customer Service guy at Ioptron told me that this was not the first one of these he'd seen...besides, at 75 years old I generally have the lug nuts done at the garage, to save my life. :bigshock:

#6 Ed Sunder

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Posted 16 January 2010 - 01:39 PM

I appreciate the article and hate to nitpick, but it appears that you were saying that you used a hydrogen alpha filter to view the sun and left the scope tracking for an hour. If you're just using a standard h-alpha filter at the eyepiece without any sort of full aperature filter, that's a quick way to burn your filter up and damage your eye in the process. I'm assuming you had a solar filter on the front of the scope or you were using something like a Solarscope h-alpha filter (which goes on the front and rear). I just don't want people to get hurt thinking "I've got a h-alpha filter! I'll put it on my eyepiece and look at the sun with my C-14!". You might put some sort of disclaimer in.
Thanks for the article.

#7 nirvanix

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Posted 18 January 2010 - 01:06 PM

John, thanks for stepping up to help iOptron turn their mount into a better product. We all benefit . :waytogo:

#8 k5apl

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 06:53 PM

Sorry about your troubles. I have one that Steve Turbo Charged but only had it out a couple of times. I also have
the 130GT, but found it took two counterweights to balance
it (I tilted the tripodabout 45 degrees). Did I do it wrong?

And, my initial target when I Slew to Object is off quite a
bit. I have to slew a good amount in Az and a little bit in
Alt. How does that compare to you?

BTW my mount tracks almost flawlessly, even at very high
power. I also observe off a deck, and need to try the earth
as a platform to see if vibration redusces. I think a heavier tripodisthe way to go.

Thanks for your nice report,

Wes

#9 Starman1

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Posted 19 January 2010 - 07:15 PM

Sorry about your troubles. I have one that Steve Turbo Charged but only had it out a couple of times. I also have
the 130GT, but found it took two counterweights to balance
it (I tilted the tripod about 45 degrees). Did I do it wrong?

And, my initial target when I Slew to Object is off quite a
bit. I have to slew a good amount in Az and a little bit in
Alt. How does that compare to you?

BTW my mount tracks almost flawlessly, even at very high
power. I also observe off a deck, and need to try the earth
as a platform to see if vibration reduces. I think a heavier tripod is the way to go.

Thanks for your nice report,

Wes

Wes,
1. The error in the initial target is due to an inaccurate pointing south and level on the scope (that's FAR from unusual). Simply loosen the clutches and point the telescope at the target. Now the telescope is pointed at the spot the mount thinks it's pointed at. The next target star will be nearly dead center--IF you make the mount as level as possible (not certain the built-in bubble level is very accurate--I use a carpenter's level.
2. Anti-vibration pads under the tripod work wonders (Meade or Celestron) to cut down on vibrations. A deck is a poor surface to observe from, but the pads work to reduce that.
3. It's also normal to need a heavier or second counterweight when the scope exceeds 10 lbs.

#10 k5apl

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Posted 20 January 2010 - 10:42 AM

Thanks Don.
I'll try using a carpenter's level and compass for South.

Wes


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