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New EQT-150SC Equatorial Platform

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#26 TG

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Posted 21 May 2016 - 01:04 PM

@Brendan, I've sent you a link to the document describing the method.

Tanveer

#27 moronpainter

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Posted 15 June 2016 - 09:45 AM

Hi i havea 12.5" teeter and a 17.5" sky designs can i use this platform for both scopes?

 

Thanks stan 



#28 G Blandin

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Posted 16 June 2016 - 08:56 AM

Yes, you can use both scopes on one platform as long as the weight of both scopes are below the maximum for the platform. I make another platform, the EQT-225SC that can handle scopes up to 225 pounds for those that need more weight capacity. I have one of these for all 3 of my scopes (10", 16" and 25") I have 2 sets of PTFE pad holes on the arms that allow me to switch the pads for different scopes.


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#29 moonwatching ferret

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Posted 29 September 2016 - 11:50 PM

which model would i need for a 16"f7 and how much, and does it come with a hand control and slew for centering planets and high power lunar imaging.??? thanks. looks a lot simpler then a giant gem



#30 G Blandin

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Posted 03 October 2016 - 04:03 PM

If your scope is less than 150 pounds, you can use the EQT-150SC which is now available in either black anodized or plain aluminum if you want to save some money. I prefer not to post pricing here so contact me privately for the latest prices if you are interested.

 

The platform doesn't come with a hand control because I am trying to keep the design simple, reliable and the price reasonable. It's a very light weight, portable design for visual observing. Not much to go break in the dark and uses a tiny amount of power to run so you aren't constantly looking for an outlet to recharge. 



#31 G Blandin

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Posted 03 October 2016 - 04:35 PM

Thanks for the previously posted suggestions. Just to respond to those:

 

The new feet I'm using on platforms now can be easily adjusted from the outside with a 9/16" wrench, even with a heavy scope on top. This was the most cost-effective solution for those who can't level the platform before putting the scope on top. All new platforms have these. I did consider having hand adjustable knobs for the feet, but that would add more cost (and increase the price which I am trying to avoid). And these new adjustable feet are backward compatible with all platforms so you can replace the originals if you have them and want to. They can be installed in place of the original (black bottom feet) that the older platforms have. You just unscrew the ones that you have and screw in the new ones. Takes only a few minutes. The cost of these is very reasonable.

 

The black motor covers are available and are also inexpensive. 

 

I will be offering wheel kits soon for those who want to keep their scopes on the platform and be able to roll everything out together.

 

As far as the polar alignment scope: Personally, I really don't think it's necessary. As a user myself, I find it's easy enough to use a low power eyepiece on your scope, center Polaris and just move the platform through it's tracking motion with the drive friction released. You adjust the platform until Polaris stays centered. It's fairly fast once you do it few times. And it's just one less thing you have to buy and keep track of. 

 

Contact me privately if you are interested in any of these items and I will let you know the price and availability. 



#32 TG

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Posted 03 October 2016 - 04:50 PM

I will be offering wheel kits soon for those who want to keep their scopes on the platform and be able to roll everything out together.

 

Contact me privately if you are interested in any of these items and I will let you know the price and availability. 

Excellent news! Thanks for following up on the suggestions, Gregg. I'm sure many previous owners (like me) will want the kits to upgrade the platform.

 

Tanveer.



#33 G Blandin

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Posted 03 October 2016 - 05:32 PM

Just wanted to clear up any potential confusion regarding the platform's adjustable feet: All of the adjustable feet can be adjusted by hand unless they have a heavy load on the platform.

 

If the feet on your platform have white bottoms, they have the additional capability to be adjusted externally with a 9/16" wrench so even under load they are easy to adjust. If you have these already you don't need to retrofit your platform for adjustment capability with a scope on the platform.

 

If the feet have black bottom pads or metal bottoms, they don't have the external adjustment capability so only those would have to be replaced if you want external adjustment under heavy load. 

 

Let me know if you have any questions.



#34 skytour

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Posted 07 October 2016 - 05:19 PM

I do an average of 12 to 15 school star parties every year at elementary and middle schools. Typically we have anywhere from 60 to 300 students and parents attending at each event. I own a 10" Dob, and stand there for hours nudging the scope after each kid looks through the eyepiece. Not anymore! I have had my Crossbow platform for almost a month now and have used it at 3 school star parties. What a treat to have a scope that tracks when you have 30 people in line to look through your scope! I love this thing! It's lightweight, easy to set up and operate, and it tracks like a champ! I'm still on my first set of batteries too. I get about 65 minutes of tracking before I reset it. I have a countdown timer app on my phone to remind me when 60 minutes are up. Resetting it is a breeze and only takes a couple of seconds. I usually arrive at a school while it's still light out so I use a compass to line it up with True North, which is not as accurate as lining it up with Polaris, but it still tracks fine. I would recommend this platform to anyone that is looking for a well engineered platform that doesn't break the bank!



#35 G Blandin

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Posted 09 November 2016 - 12:58 PM

Thanks for the review and keep on tracking!



#36 stevekaczmar

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 08:40 PM

So how well does it work for taking pics? Any of you guys taking pics of DSO ?. If so how long of an exp. can one expect?...Thanks,,,

 

If this thing tracks well enough to take pics I would be in the market for one to put my 12 incher on.



#37 G Blandin

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 10:04 AM

Steve,

 

This version is designed for visual astronomy only and would only be capable of short exposures. I am working on a platform that will be usable for imaging and will be guidable which is really what you need.


Edited by G Blandin, 13 November 2016 - 10:05 AM.

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#38 stevekaczmar

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Posted 14 November 2016 - 12:08 AM

OK..Sounds good.Look forward to seeing the new one when finished.Thanks for the reply.



#39 G Blandin

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Posted 03 December 2016 - 02:02 PM

I'll post an update when I get close to production.



#40 G Blandin

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Posted 26 December 2016 - 10:51 PM

For all the latest product information, check out my new website at:

 

http://www.blandineq...alplatforms.com


Edited by G Blandin, 26 December 2016 - 10:53 PM.

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#41 G Blandin

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 12:20 PM

The EQT Crossbow Platforms have a new feature: an externally mounted tracking speed adjustment.

 

Here's a picture of the new control panel showing the on/off switch and the tracking speed adjustment. 

 

Tracking control.jpg



#42 GShaffer

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 01:16 AM

Gregg

 

I have noted some of the new features and designs you have added since I got EQT-200 #2. Possible to do some upgrades? If so which ones and how much?

 

Thanks

Greg



#43 G Blandin

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 10:42 AM

Greg,

 

Here are the improvements I've made on the EQT-200/225 series platforms since the initial design:

 

  1. Internal motor. The drive motor is now internal to the tubing and no external wiring
  2. Friction release lever. Makes the platform reset very smooth and easy, also helps with polar alignment
  3. External tracking adjustment. Makes tracking speed adjustment easier and faster

I'd prefer to not post pricing on the forum because it can be specific to your platform and also may change with time. I'll send you pricing in a PM.



#44 GShaffer

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Posted 20 April 2017 - 03:14 PM

Greg,
 
Here are the improvements I've made on the EQT-200/225 series platforms since the initial design:


  • Internal motor. The drive motor is now internal to the tubing and no external wiring
  • Friction release lever. Makes the platform reset very smooth and easy, also helps with polar alignment
  • External tracking adjustment. Makes tracking speed adjustment easier and faster
I'd prefer to not post pricing on the forum because it can be specific to your platform and also may change with time. I'll send you pricing in a PM.


Sounds good.....thanks!

#45 astrogalio

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 04:30 AM

Greg,

 

Here are the improvements I've made on the EQT-200/225 series platforms since the initial design:

 

  1. Internal motor. The drive motor is now internal to the tubing and no external wiring
  2. Friction release lever. Makes the platform reset very smooth and easy, also helps with polar alignment
  3. External tracking adjustment. Makes tracking speed adjustment easier and faster

I'd prefer to not post pricing on the forum because it can be specific to your platform and also may change with time. I'll send you pricing in a PM.

 

Hello, Dear Blandin. I was wondering. Are your crossbow equatorial platforms compatible with the MEADE LIGHTBRIDGE series of telescopes? Say the

12 inch Meade Lightbridge? The standard model all stock without any upgrades etc. I wonder If the large rounded rocker bottom will fit just just on the EQT-150SC....

 

I saw your most budget model which says it can carry up to 150lbs. If I am not mistaken the 12 inch Lightbridge is about 80lbs to 100lbs depending on the configuration. So I believe more than enough. Although I don't plan to buy it anytime soon, But in the near future. In about a years time because of other things I need to spend the money on. ( I do hope that you are still running your business. Otherwise I will have to look for used ones on the market bawling.gif)

 

I have been searching a lot on the internet for a very good platform, and yours hit it on the spot! I am surprised it is so lightweight as well that it made me wonder if it super durable to really hold all that weight. So I have your platform on my list for sure.

I just wanted to clarify if it would work.

 

If so. I would be very excited and Happy! And for sure would be happy to purchase one.

I just saw that you added a tracking rate knob! Thats awesome and convenient! Perfect when zooming on those planets.

Thanks and I hope you reply soon.

 

Ed


Edited by astrogalio, 25 August 2019 - 04:31 AM.

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#46 astrogalio

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 04:33 AM

Oh and also, Would it work for lattitudes from 40 degrees down to about 30degrees? And what is the maximum number of degrees it can go to? Just to make sure it'll work if I plan to take the platform to different Dark Spots. 

 

Ed



#47 G Blandin

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Posted 25 August 2019 - 11:00 AM

Yes I am still building the platforms.

 

I have customers that have the Meade Lightbridge telescope so it's not a problem. The weight of 80 to 90 pounds is well within the weight limits of the EQT-150SC. As far as latitude goes, you can change the latitude of the platform about plus or minus 5 degrees with shims on either end. Theoretically, you can go more but there are practical limitations to having the platform at an angle instead of being level as per design. So a 35 degree platform could be used from 30 to 40 degrees.

 

You can private message me if you want more information or want to order.


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#48 TG

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Posted 26 August 2019 - 12:31 PM

Gregg, I'm glad to hear that you are still building the platforms. waytogo.gif

 

I have a question about the tracking speed control on the newer platforms: is it a simple rheostat? Mine doesn't have one and as the AAA batteries get used up, I find that my tracking speed suffers. Also, AAA batteries don't have much capacity to begin with and I was thinking of replacing them with rechargeable ones but what's the nominal operating voltage of the motor? Rechargeable batteries are usually 1.2V so if I wire up a pack containing 3, would that work?

 

Thanks,

Tanveer.



#49 G Blandin

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Posted 26 August 2019 - 05:32 PM

The tracking speed control is not just a rheostat in line with the batteries. It's an input to a motor controller that changes the tracking speed when adjusted. The adjustment does not need to be changed as the batteries go down in voltage. 

 

I'm getting 20 or more  one hour cycles out of mine so maybe there is a problem with your controller. 

 

You can use a different DC power source, but it needs to be between 2v and 4v. 

 

Private message me if you have any specific issues with your platform that you need help with.


Edited by G Blandin, 26 August 2019 - 06:48 PM.


#50 TG

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Posted 26 August 2019 - 10:08 PM

Thanks, Gregg. I'll carry on this conversation offline with you.

Tanveer


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