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Orion Starseeker IV / SW Discovery tripod - How to install a different mount?

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#1 elliotkelly

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Posted 05 September 2018 - 02:30 PM

Hi folks,

 

First post here, glad to finally join this community after being only a viewer for quite a bit.

 

I'm looking for some guidance as I just came across a major frustration with my setup, but I guess it's just because I am starting and there might be some common workaround which you are aware of.

 

I have an Orion Starseeker IV 127mm MAK (same mount/tripod as Sky Watcher Discovery) and recently got a SW Star Adventurer hoping to use the tripod that came with my telescope. They are not compatible with each other straight out of the box which I kind of knew beforehand due to the very specific way in which the SS tripod/mount are connected, and as it turns out a tech support rep from Orion confirmed that the Starseeker IV mount and tripod are only compatible with each other by design, and they are not aware of (or cannot tell me) any way in which I can use the tripod with my Star Adventurer (or any other mount for that matter).

 

I'm trying to find a way to install a different mount (with a standard 1/4 or 3/8 connector) to the tripod that I have and make it versatile. The closest thing I've found is this thread: https://stargazerslo...r-steel-tripod/

 

A user mentioned a Berlebach plate as the potential solution, and also this screw was mentioned as a cheaper alternative: https://www.berlebac...sprache=english

 

No one has confirmed though if they were successful with either of these options.

 

Any ideas of what I can do? If buying another tripod is the only option I would rather sell the whole Starseeker setup and buy something different that will be versatile in the future.

 

Thanks in advance! smile.gif

 

Btw here's a photo of what the tripod looks like: https://stargazerslo...6527318e388.jpg


Edited by elliotkelly, 05 September 2018 - 02:32 PM.


#2 photoracer18

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Posted 05 September 2018 - 03:16 PM

Quick and dirty method is this:

1. remove the center rod and spreader from the tripod by unscrewing it out of the top.

2. go to HD or Lowes and find a 3/8-16 threaded rod, at about 12" in length (or cut a 2' rod in half).

3. while at the store buy a couple of 3/8-16 wing nuts or knobs (if you can find those) and a few flat washers for the rod that take up space because the hole in the spreader might be bigger.

4. put the Star adventurer on top of the tripod and put the threaded rod thru the bottom into the base of the SA and screw it in until it stops.

5. then slide the tripod spreader up onto the threaded rod and put the wind nut + washer on and screw it on until it tightens the entire tripod.

 

That should do it. If the store does not have 3/8-16 threaded rod you can get that on line and maybe knobs similar to the factory knobs in 3/8 instead of wing nuts. If you want to be really cool you can find someone with a lathe that can cut a groove in the 3/8 rod so you can put a C-clip on the top part so it does not fall out of the tripod when you take the mount off. If the hole in the top of the tripod is actually smaller than the 3/8 you will need to drill it out some until it fits thru the hole.


Edited by photoracer18, 05 September 2018 - 03:23 PM.

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#3 ABQJeff

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Posted 02 December 2020 - 01:12 AM

I am re-purposing my unused Star Seeker IV tripod as well (since I used a Berlebach 212 Report for my Orion 150 Mak, like photoracer) to hold an Orion Paragon-Plus Binocular mount.   

 

At first I assumed the tripod had a 3/8-16 center hole (since that is what the three bolts on the side are as well as the SS IV mount head center hole, ugh leave it to Orion/Synta to use a different center hole thread in the tripod), then I thought it was an M10 hole...so this posting set me straight (thank you for that).

 

I ordered some M12 bolts just in case I have to go the Berlebach plate route, but first I am trying this adapter:

 

Fitting Metric M12 M12X1.75 Male to UNC 3/8-16 Female Reducer Headless Adapter Stainless Steel

 

https://www.fittings...m12x18m-u06x16f

 

And I got some "Set screws, Allen, Cup point, Stainless steel 316, 3/8"-16 x 1/2""  from BoltDepot.com, also in 3/8" and 3/4" size just in case.

 

(originally purchased too long of 3/8-16 screws, oh well).

 

In the end, even with some incorrect/unneeded purchases and shipping of screws, adapters and short rods (but hey who doesn't like some extra screws and bolts around), it will still be less than the $100+ (including shipping to US) for the Berlebach adapter plate.  I will let you know how it goes and send pics (the bolts and adapter should be here in the next few days.)

 

ABQJeff



#4 ABQJeff

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Posted 02 December 2020 - 01:52 AM

While I wait for the adpater and screws to hook into the center hole, I will just have to be off center (since the side bolts ARE 3/8-16" so can go into the extension rod I got from B&H).  Note using the rod makes it a little shaky, but less than my arms holding the binos and if I keep my hand on the parallelogram shaking is eliminated (and it keeps me from having to extend the tripod legs).

 

Adapting SSIV for Bino Mount - Off Center.jpg



#5 ABQJeff

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Posted 10 December 2020 - 08:24 PM

Well this fitting didn't work because inner diameter was too large (so don't use it for this purpose):

 

Fitting Metric M12 M12X1.75 Male to UNC 3/8-16 Female Reducer Headless Adapter Stainless Steel   https://www.fittings...m12x18m-u06x16f.

 

But I am still holding off on ordering the Baader EQ6 adapter plate from Europe for $100 with shipping, so I ordered some M12 to 1/4-20 adapters from B&H Photo (since I already have 3/8-16 to 1/4-20 adapter)

 

"CAMVATE 1/4"-20 Male to M12 Male Double-End Adapter CAC1571
In Stock   QTY:  1   Price:  $10.48  $10.48"

 

I also ordered four (in total) Jobu design 3.5" risers from B&H Photo to act as a 14" pier extension (because again carbon fiber extension rod is a bit wobbly for me).

 

Again I will send photo once I have this working right.  In meantime I am still using the off-center 3/8-16 bolts.


Edited by ABQJeff, 10 December 2020 - 08:26 PM.


#6 ABQJeff

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Posted 14 December 2020 - 03:47 PM

Got it to work!

 

"CAMVATE 1/4"-20 Male to M12 Male Double-End Adapter CAC1571
In Stock   QTY:  1   Price:  $10.48  $10.48"

 

Plus 1/4" to 3/8"-16 thread adapter (didn't buy it because I received in other astronomy kit, it is a VERY common adapter)

 

Plus 2-1/4" rubber washer with 5/8" interior hole (~$1.50)

 

Here are photos....

 

Center hole is M12-1.75 (as earler discussed ignore that the three bolts are 3/8-16 and the mount head's center hole is 3/8-16)

 

center hole is M12 1-75.jpeg

 

Here are the parts you will need to covert the M12-1.75 to 3/8"-16

 

Needed parts.jpeg

 

All assembled together

 

pieces all assembled together.jpeg

 

Add the the 3/8"-16 part of your choice

 

Use the 3 1-8 - 16 item of your choice.jpeg

 



#7 ABQJeff

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Posted 14 December 2020 - 03:47 PM

And Voila!  I adapted my SSIV tripod to a 3/8"-16 based tripod...  for ~$12 in parts.

 

All set-up.jpeg




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