You are one of the few posters I have read who can discuss the TEC 200. You say it is enormous and I believe you, but it is hard to get a feel for the size of the OTA (which drives the mount requirements), and the few images I have seen don't really show anything for scale. So how does it compare to say, a C14 size-wise? Similar? Larger? Would an AP 1200 handle the load? I have a serious interest in the TEC 200, but still lack a real feel for what it takes to handle one. If I ever go mad and buy one it will live in an observatory, no toting it around for me!
I see that the "Homage to 8" Glass" has just resurfaced again, a couple of useful pix in there
I arrived at the Winter Star Party this February, and you get this feeling of energy. Then, way off in the distance you see this telescope, sitting high above everything else, imposing itself on the entire star party as if to keep all the other little scopes in their place. Then it draws you in, and you finally come face to face with the TEC 200.
Even now as I look at the photo I've posted, it fools me to. It doesn't look that big. I should have stood in the photo so you could get a sense of scale. When looking over the TEC 180, it feels like a scope you could grab one handed and throw under your arm. The TEC 200 feels like a scope you and your best friend look at for a while and discuss how you are going to move it safely before you dare try mount it. A lot of my thoughts and feelings relate to the value of each scope, as a mishap with the 200 could be likely something you would never recover from, emotionally or financially.
My 32" dob weighs 420 lbs, and before I had it in the obs it got wheeled out every night. Setting it up was child's play that took a few minutes. As I looked at the TEC 200 on the AP 1600 I couldn't think of anything more difficult to setup. But the beauty of this situation is it was at a star party and was going to get a weeks worth of use, so that was a good deal.
If you look at the photo, there's a weak point in that system. The AP 1600 was the perfect mount, yet the scope would wobble around for a couple of seconds when you touched the focuser. The problem mounting the 200 is not the weight, but the really long moment arm of the tube. I think a really solid pier would be beneficial over a tripod, as I think that was a weakness in this setup. If you had it in an obs on a pier I'm sure the AP 1200 would work.