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CN Report: Binocular Mounts, Tripods & Mounting

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#1 asaint

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 07:27 AM

Binocular Mounts, Tripods & Mounting

#2 Glassthrower

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 10:12 AM

Once again, EdZ has proven his merit in the realm of binocular observing.

A highly informative and practical read.

This is a must read for anyone who is considering mounting options for binoculars.

Thanks for sharing, EdZ.

MikeG

#3 ylin

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 11:48 AM

Thanks for the report. Now if someone ask about mount, just let him/she read this report...

#4 stevecoe

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 01:53 PM

Ed;

Thanks for a very comprehensive overview of ways to mount a set of binoculars. Plenty of great choices. I recently sold a plastic center post at a club swap meet. I felt bad about it because I know that it does a poor job, but the guy was going to use it on 8X45 binoculars, so maybe it will do OK for those light binoculars.

You did not mention a choice that I have seen and that is using a telescope tripod and making an adaptor plate to fit the parallelogram to it. One of my club members used an old Celestron tripod and created a thick wooden plate on top to mount up the binocular mount. It works great. Yes, heavier than a Bogen, but certainly sturdy. With an observing chair underneath, it is very comfortable to sit and observe, all but right at the zenith, as you said.

In the 30 years that I have been observing the sky, I take out a pair of binoculars every time. I find it interresting that sitting among thousands of dollars worth of equipment I pull out my 300 dollar binocs and sit and enjoy as a relaxing time. There are lots of great ways to see the Universe.

Clear Skies to us all;
Steve Coe

#5 mplkn1

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 02:29 PM

Let it be noted for keeps:

This is a solid, significant, and lasting contribution.

Many thanks, Ed Z.

#6 EdZ

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 05:28 PM

Thanks for the comments.
I hope this article helps people with a need to know.

Steve, I liked this;
"There are lots of great ways to see the Universe."

How true.

edz

#7 Ronny Floyd

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 05:48 PM

Wow !

Great job Ed !

It looks like this will be our default,definitive,be all and end all source for the very best bino mounting methods.

THANKYOU.....I have no doubt that many folks will benefit from this excellant report.

#8 JohnFredC

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 08:45 PM

Very informative. Thanks.

Wish you had commented on more fork-type mounts, though.

My Helix Hercules/Antares Pier/Apogee RA-88s are as smooth and solid as you could want. No vibration/damping issues to speak of.

#9 EdZ

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Posted 16 January 2006 - 09:34 PM

Sorry, I don't have any fork mounts.

edz

#10 Sooon

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 01:19 AM

Impressive amount of data and great article ! Thanks for sharing that with us :waytogo: :bow: !

Clear skies

#11 EdZ

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 09:18 AM

I incorrectly stated that the Davis and Sanford (D&S) Provista7518 with an F12 fluid head is the same as the Orion Paragon XHD.

Actually there are two different D&S Provista tripods, the Provista 75 and the Provista. D&S matches the Provista75 with their F18 fluid head and the Provista with their F12 fluid head.

It is the Provista with F12 fluid head that is the same as the Paragon XHD.

edz

#12 JWT

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 11:59 AM

Edz,

Great info and well written. Thanks for doing this for us.

I am currently shopping for a new mount, and it really makes things much clearer.

I have a question regarding mirror mounts/reflectivity.

I use a homemade mirror mount with a first surface mirror that I was told has 94% reflectivity. You mention that 88% is most likely the best that you can get. Is 94% possible or does it seem that I was mislead in the purchase?

Would the 12% lost be noticeable in binoculars with lower magnifications as compared to handheld/tripod mounting?

Thanks again.
JWT

#13 EdZ

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 12:44 PM

I have seen a mirror supplier advertise a 94% reflectivity mirror. Actually that's quite high. Diagonals with enhanced aluminum get up to the 93% to 96% range and may be overcoated with quartz. Standard mirror diagonals may be closer to 88%. Depends on the supplier.

At low magnifications vs handheld, I doubt you would notice any difference.

edz

#14 Mr. Bill

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 02:57 PM

Very through treatment of mountings for binoculars; however here's a couple of others for people with giant or super giant binoculars.

The 6 inch Fujis are mounted on a Universal Astronomics Sirius B parallelogram mount which in turn is mounted on a G11 tripod. This combo carries the 43 pound load with very good stability.

The Oberwerk 25x100 is mounted on UA Unistar head with the adapter plate from Oberwerk and the mounting is on a heavy duty surveyor's tripod also from Oberwerk. It too is quite stable for the load.

Attached Thumbnails

  • 781794-binoculars.jpg


#15 EdZ

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 07:25 PM

Whoa, they shrunk!

Hey Bill, Boy they sure did/do look great in a giant photo, but I guess them's the guidelines. Anyway, stuff I'd really like to have for 6 months so I could review it. Yeh, six months, maybe 8.

edz

#16 Mr. Bill

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 07:51 PM

Whoa, they shrunk!

Hey Bill, Boy they sure did/do look great in a giant photo, but I guess them's the guidelines. Anyway, stuff I'd really like to have for 6 months so I could review it. Yeh, six months, maybe 8.

edz


Well, if the photos are going to be limited to this size I guess there's not much point anymore in posting photos; its pretty hard to show any detail
(I didn't consider the original photo "giant".....it was the size I have been posting for a year, around 250k)

What does the reference to attaching a file "no bigger than 1000000 bytes please" refer to then?

:tonofbricks:

#17 spaceydee

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 08:13 PM

I think that it is possible to resize a picture in size (that is diskspace size) without having to reduce it to such a small physical size in pixels. I can do some research and get back to you. I know one way on my computer is to save as a higher compression version of a jpg file.

#18 Astrowood

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Posted 17 January 2006 - 08:55 PM

WOW !
I've read this forum many times with great interest, and now I'm compelled to write - What an excellent article !
I found the writing to be clear and very informative. I have printed out a copy and have read it a number of times today already.
I have built a number of parallelogram mounts and I was particularly interested in your comments relative to "Overstress the Tripod Head". In my view, this is one of the more challenging areas to get right when building your own mount. Also worthy of note is the effort put in to determining "Settling Times" for various mounts, this is very useful for comparative purposes.

Ed, all I can say is - Great Job, I certainly appreciate your effort !!

#19 EdZ

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Posted 18 January 2006 - 10:15 AM

thanks for the positive feedback.

For those wishing to print out this doucument, a word of advice.

Once you have entered the link provided thru here, click on the line at the top of the page that says

"Download this Document".

That will up load a pdf version and will preserve all the formatting exactly as submitted. No breaks on photos, no headers on one page paragraph on the nextpage, sidebars alongside photos and no confusion with next paragrah text. It gives a much better printout. And it makes me feel better that I didn't do all that formatting for no purpose.

Enjoy. edz

#20 asfoxesden

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Posted 17 February 2006 - 03:23 PM

First off, let me say that this article was impressively comprehensive. Almost overwhelmingly so.

As a relative newb in the field of astronomical mounts I felt myself getting turned around and confused as you described several mounts, heads, and accessories that work for X, but not for Y, however this set up for X will work for Y unless you use this head then the whole set up won't do the job.

It's kind of hard to put in words.

I understand a tripod. I'm used to camera tripods with the pan head and all that I put my "L" bracket on the base, slide it into the slot and lock it down. I use a medium weight, aluminum Vivitar tripod to carry my Oberwerk 15x70s and I know it's shakey at best.

I've been told Bogen tripods are good, solid tripods and I'm leaning in that direction with some good model numbers thanks to your article.

What I don't have a good handle on are the special pan heads, slo-motion controls, mounting brackets, etc. When I see the set up all together I lose track of where the stock tripod ends and the other components are added to it.

When you purchase a Bogan tripod, does it come with a camera head? Or is it just an aluminum rod and reciever? How does a paralellagram mount to the tripod? Certainly not just by the 1/4" of 20 thread to the inch machine screw I'm used to seeing?

This really is a question I should take to my local Astronomy Club and see if I can't get a real time look at their set ups. That'd probably be the eye opener that I need to put the puzzle of pieces together.

But I wanted to touch base and let you know that it was an excellent article, but a lot of it went over my head.

Clear, dark skies

#21 EdZ

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Posted 25 February 2006 - 10:28 PM

How does a paralellagram mount to the tripod? Certainly not just by the 1/4" of 20 thread to the inch machine screw I'm used to seeing?


That is exactly how a Pgram mounts. Or in the case of a Bogen tripod it's not 1/4x20 but 3/8x16.

I'd suggest looking at a number of the tripod ads at Adorama
http://www.adorama.c...ry&cat1=Tripods
the photos should give clear understanding of where tripod vertical center post ends and where head begins.

All Bogen tripods are tripod only, no head. Bogen heads are purchased separately.

Sorry for the delay in reply, I've been out of town.

edz

edz


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