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Need suggestions for intermediate go-to mount (10-15 kg payload)

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#1 Thandal

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 03:10 PM

I'm trying to make the best use of the tripods & mounts I already own in order to put several smaller (70mm - 130mm) scopes in-service for the "KidZone" at our club's semi-annual public star parties.

 

In analyzing my options I keep coming back to, "This works out much better if I just upgrade my own primary scope's mount and pass along its current one."

 

So I'm in the market and the criteria are as follows...

 

Required

Go-To (but allows manual movement w/o "unlocking" or losing alignment)

Payload: 20 lbs - 30 lbs (10kg -15kg)

Dovetail: Vixen

Cost: <US$700 (yeah, I know this is the tough one at that payload)

 

Desired

Hand Controller: SynScan (I'm already familiar with the software.  If there's a compelling argument for another, am willing to consider it.)

 

 

Recommendations?

 



#2 denny-o

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 03:25 PM

AVX comes close



#3 Bean614

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 03:47 PM

AVX comes close

Not really.  It doesn't have Dual Encoders, so it can not be moved manually without losing alignment.

Some SkyWatcher/Orion mounts have this feature, so you will probably be getting a scope with a SynScan Controller.



#4 Pauls72

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 03:50 PM

Since you want the mount to not lose it's position when moved, you need encoders. This become fairly expensive. Plus you want a SynScan hand controller. The two mounts closest to your price range are the Sky-Watcher AZ-EQ5 PRO and the Orion Sirius Pro AZ/EQ-G. They are both the same mount except for the color. But the price is almost double your budget. Maybe you can find a used one. Other suggestions would be more expensive.

 

https://www.skywatch...n-wpier-tripod/

 

https://www.telescop...nt/p/114829.uts


Edited by Pauls72, 22 May 2019 - 03:51 PM.


#5 Chuckwagon

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 03:57 PM

Not really.  It doesn't have Dual Encoders, so it can not be moved manually without losing alignment.

Some SkyWatcher/Orion mounts have this feature, so you will probably be getting a scope with a SynScan Controller.

Sure it can.  Push a slew button and it goes where you want it to.  That's manual movement.  You choose where it goes "manually."  No unlocking required, no loss of alignment.  :)


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#6 photoracer18

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Posted 23 May 2019 - 04:12 PM

The size scopes you list don't weigh anywhere near 20#-30#. The simpler Orion Star Seeker IV an Alt-Az go-to scope has built in encoders also and is listed to handle 13#. That is enough to carry a 6" SCT or Mak with room to spare. Early models has a known clutch tension issue but that is supposed to be fixed. I have one I picked up at a dealer auction recently and so far it handles my C-5 SCT fine. Have not tried my 6" MCT yet. It seems to be a much beefier mount than any of the Celestron 80GT or SLT models (have those also as I was looking for a portable goto mount that could handle an 80mm APO).


Edited by photoracer18, 23 May 2019 - 04:13 PM.


#7 Thandal

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Posted 27 May 2019 - 11:35 PM

The size scopes you list don't weigh anywhere near 20#-30#.

 

Right.  I already have a SS-IV, (that's what I would be "passing along" to the 130mm f/5 reflector if I can find something to better support my new CC6.)  And it's certainly a good choice for the smaller scopes.  In fact, our club bought one for a donated Stellarvue 90mm APO after trying mine during a star party last year.

 

And upgrading my primary scope's mount would effectively upgrade all the other ones as well through the hand-me-down effect.  lol.gif

 

I keep considering the Explore Scientific FirstLight Exos-2GT. It appears to meet most of my criteria, but...

 

a.  How important is doing more than rough (approximate) polar alignment if just using for visual observing?  I ask because I frequently move my scope during an evening.  Don't have unobstructed views in all directions, so I shift to the other side of the house.  (And if re-aliginment could require using a particular single star that I can't see from there, then this is a non-starter.)

 

b.  Is the software different/better than the Bressler version that eveyone was complaining about when this mount was first released?

 

c.  Does it come in black?



#8 Thandal

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Posted 14 June 2019 - 12:51 PM

Whelp...  After about a month of looking around at "what's on offer", there really does seem to be a void at the 20-30 lbs (10-15 kg) payload range for Go-To mounts under US$750.

 

What I was looking for is something at the lower end of the (payload) weight and price range, but everything seems to fall just short in one aspect or another.

 

So... I'm adding the Orion Sirius Pro Az/EQ-G to my "When I decide I can spend another 1.5 AUs" list.

 

[EDIT: For those in the private pilot/general aviation world an "AU" is an "Aviation Unit", which equals US$1000.  But it could also stand for an "Astronomy Unit".  Many (most?) things one has to, or desires to, obtain exceed 1.0 AU.  wink.gif ]


Edited by Thandal, 14 June 2019 - 04:48 PM.



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