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Heavily modified LXD75 or something better...

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#1 Ryan1776

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 09:49 AM

I currently have an LXD55 stock-o mount. 

I've only been at this a few weeks, maybe a month now so very new. But I study a lot and read as much as possible whenever I can on a new subject so my learning curve has been a straight line up! I've learned that my mount is pretty substandard for most applications. 

 

I stumbled upon a local guy selling an Hypertuned LXD75 and WarpsDrive belt kit installed-didn't even know that was a thing! And from a few min of searching doesn't look like I can even buy for mine. 

The tripod and also the 909 module for auto-guiding. 

I can probably get this for 600-700 bucks I'd imagine with a little negotiating.  

 

Is this worthwhile or would say a Skywatcher HEQ5 be able to be had for that price with enough patience? 

I don't mind the mount being heavily modified, what I don't know is how solid those 909 modules for auto-guiding are. I've read mixed reviews. 

 

So I guess what I'm really asking is this mount equal to something like a stock HEQ5? Or is the native ability to auto-guide in the HEQ5 far better than all the required accessories to auto-guide the Meade? 

If in the end everything is equal, I might take a run at this mount. 

 

With the HEQ5 I would need a new dovetail or scope saddle as mine wouldn't work (I don't think they attach the same) so there is another level of price involved. Whereas the LXD75 would accept my LXD55 8" newt scope. 

 

Thank you

Ryan. 

 



#2 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 04:28 PM

Gday Ryan

The 909s are very simple and do work, but are only required if you are going to use ST4 guiding.

You can also use the later "pulseguiding" directly via a serial connection to the handbox, ie no need for the 909.

As to which mount is best, no idea, as you can have lots of variability between units.

 

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia



#3 avarakin

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 12:11 AM

700 bucks for lxd75 is too much. For the same money you can get a used Atlas which would be a great match for 8" newtonian.

Alex



#4 EFT

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 02:06 AM

An LXD75 is only worth a couple hundred at this point.  There are parts involving the motor assemblies that are no longer available and if they go out you have nothing.  An HEQ5 is a far better mount if you can swing it, even if it is just stock.  Your scope would need a new dovetail bar and those are easily available.


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#5 Ryan1776

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 06:41 AM

700 bucks for lxd75 is too much. For the same money you can get a used Atlas which would be a great match for 8" newtonian.

Alex

 

An LXD75 is only worth a couple hundred at this point.  There are parts involving the motor assemblies that are no longer available and if they go out you have nothing.  An HEQ5 is a far better mount if you can swing it, even if it is just stock.  Your scope would need a new dovetail bar and those are easily available.

Thank you to you both. 
I'm actually surprised to hear this however. 

I know a stock lxd75 isn't worth that much money, but the Hypetune alone is 400 bucks. With the belt drive install and extras, 2 controllers, GPS,  I figured that might no be too bad.  

Ed, that is a solid point on the motors and parts. 

 

Avarakin, I'll look into the Atlas. It looks like it's more new than an HEQ5 however? I know we're talking used. Just using that as a reference. 

 

In the end thank you guys! Sounds like it's better to let it pass. I thought I found a good deal! hahaha

 

Ryan



#6 Charlie B

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 07:26 AM

I currently have an LXD55 stock-o mount. 

I've only been at this a few weeks, maybe a month now so very new. But I study a lot and read as much as possible whenever I can on a new subject so my learning curve has been a straight line up! I've learned that my mount is pretty substandard for most applications. 

 

I stumbled upon a local guy selling an Hypertuned LXD75 and WarpsDrive belt kit installed-didn't even know that was a thing! And from a few min of searching doesn't look like I can even buy for mine. 

The tripod and also the 909 module for auto-guiding. 

I can probably get this for 600-700 bucks I'd imagine with a little negotiating.  

 

Is this worthwhile or would say a Skywatcher HEQ5 be able to be had for that price with enough patience? 

I don't mind the mount being heavily modified, what I don't know is how solid those 909 modules for auto-guiding are. I've read mixed reviews. 

 

So I guess what I'm really asking is this mount equal to something like a stock HEQ5? Or is the native ability to auto-guide in the HEQ5 far better than all the required accessories to auto-guide the Meade? 

If in the end everything is equal, I might take a run at this mount. 

 

With the HEQ5 I would need a new dovetail or scope saddle as mine wouldn't work (I don't think they attach the same) so there is another level of price involved. Whereas the LXD75 would accept my LXD55 8" newt scope. 

 

Thank you

Ryan. 

I had and sold 2 lxd75s and a lxd55.  The real problem is that they are undersized for your 8 inch.  I had a Meade SN-8 on mine and balance was critical for imaging.  The other responders gave good advice. Pass on this and go with a better and more modern mount that you can get for nearly the same money.  

 

Regards,

 

Charlie B


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#7 Ryan1776

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 07:37 AM

I had and sold 2 lxd75s and a lxd55.  The real problem is that they are undersized for your 8 inch.  I had a Meade SN-8 on mine and balance was critical for imaging.  The other responders gave good advice. Pass on this and go with a better and more modern mount that you can get for nearly the same money.  

 

Regards,

 

Charlie B

Will do. Thank you all for the advice! 
Glad I asked. 

 

Ryan.



#8 avarakin

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 11:46 AM

I have a friend who used to have Orion Sirius (same as HEQ5) and he had to upgrade to Atlas because Sirius was not steady enough for his 8" newtonian.

Another option, if you are adventurous, is to get Losmandy GM8 or G11 without Goto and build Onstep controller. This should keep you within your budget but will give you higher end mount.

 

Alex



#9 Ryan1776

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 02:46 PM

I have a friend who used to have Orion Sirius (same as HEQ5) and he had to upgrade to Atlas because Sirius was not steady enough for his 8" newtonian.

Another option, if you are adventurous, is to get Losmandy GM8 or G11 without Goto and build Onstep controller. This should keep you within your budget but will give you higher end mount.

 

Alex

Dang, so you're saying the HEQ5 still isn't "big" enough?! confused1.gif   Not the EQ5, but the HEQ5? 

EQ5 is about 22lb payload vs the HEQ5 about 30. 

 

Dang, I just weighed my scope....22.5lbs. Plus two 9.6lb counter weights....41.7lb payload....That's insinuating the HEQ6 isn't good enough once you attach camera and guide scope to it..... 

 

 

Adventurous...yes. But with an 18 month old, I don't have the time. 


Edited by Ryan1776, 14 September 2019 - 02:47 PM.


#10 Bean614

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 05:35 PM

"Plus two 9.6lb counter weights....41.7lb payload."

 

Not really.  You do NOT include the Counterweights as part of the Payload weight.  The Load Capacity is given, you need only be concerned about the weight of the scope and accessories (camera, etc.).  However, it is generally helpful, with the low to mid level mounts, to prepare to use 50% or less if you're Imaging.


Edited by Bean614, 14 September 2019 - 08:32 PM.

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#11 avarakin

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 07:58 PM

Yep, so even Atlas with #40 capacity would be little stressed under 8" newtonian. Still, I know that a lot of people run 8" newtons with Atlas mount. Beware of Celestron CGEM even though it has similar capacity. I believe EQ6 is the same as Atlas, so it would work too.  



#12 FoxTrot

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 04:53 AM

G'day Ryan, from down under.

 

Concur with the others here, the LXD75 isn't really any better than your LXD55. Although this LXD75 has been modified, there's no escaping that it's an old and very crude mount: notably, the awful plastic motor housings, crude worm adjustment, and substandard bolting of the motors to the axis.  Also, a Hypertune is little more than a dismantling and re-grease, and although the belts may have eliminated some slack and noise, all the alternative mounts mentioned above would still be a significant upgrade over this LXD75.  And agreed, an 8 inch Newt is over the limit for an LXD75. My 4inch Genesis (about 4kg) + LXD75 is an OK basic combo, but with the NP127is at around 8kg (about 18lb), the mount only barely copes. It'll do the job, but it's flimsy, inadequate and really lacks solidity. I'd go for an HEQ5 or better.  And its only a matter of time before I upgrade from my own LXD75.

 

Cheers, Fox



#13 Ryan1776

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 06:06 AM

G'day Ryan, from down under.

 

Concur with the others here, the LXD75 isn't really any better than your LXD55. Although this LXD75 has been modified, there's no escaping that it's an old and very crude mount: notably, the awful plastic motor housings, crude worm adjustment, and substandard bolting of the motors to the axis.  Also, a Hypertune is little more than a dismantling and re-grease, and although the belts may have eliminated some slack and noise, all the alternative mounts mentioned above would still be a significant upgrade over this LXD75.  And agreed, an 8 inch Newt is over the limit for an LXD75. My 4inch Genesis (about 4kg) + LXD75 is an OK basic combo, but with the NP127is at around 8kg (about 18lb), the mount only barely copes. It'll do the job, but it's flimsy, inadequate and really lacks solidity. I'd go for an HEQ5 or better.  And its only a matter of time before I upgrade from my own LXD75.

 

Cheers, Fox

Thank you to everyone who has commented and helped me NOT buy that! I almost did ask, but I'm glad that I did. 

 

Looks like I'm on the hunt for:

HEQ5

HEQ6

Orion Atlas

 

Besides this board and ebay, is there any other places I should/could keep an eye out for a used mount like this?

What would be a "good" price, what is normal? Do these mounts pop up often or is it something when you see it you better get it because it could be months before one comes up again?


Edited by Ryan1776, 16 September 2019 - 06:12 AM.


#14 Wildetelescope

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 06:19 AM

I have a friend who used to have Orion Sirius (same as HEQ5) and he had to upgrade to Atlas because Sirius was not steady enough for his 8" newtonian.

Another option, if you are adventurous, is to get Losmandy GM8 or G11 without Goto and build Onstep controller. This should keep you within your budget but will give you higher end mount.

 

Alex

The atlas is a small as I would go for an 8 inch scope.  Would not use a straight gm8.  Maybe a gm811.  Is your 8 inch an f6, or a shorter Astro graph?  The issue is the moment arm, rather than the weight,   Bottom line, to lmage with an 8 inch scope, you are going to spend 800-1500 bucks on the mount, depending on what it is and whether it is new or used.  People DO make it work with less, but it is a lot of work and taxes your patience.   If you focus on what people here call EAA or astrovideo, which uses short duration images and stacks them, the demands on your mount can be reduced.  Things to think about.

 

jmd  



#15 Ryan1776

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 06:27 AM

The atlas is a small as I would go for an 8 inch scope.  Would not use a straight gm8.  Maybe a gm811.  Is your 8 inch an f6, or a shorter Astro graph?  The issue is the moment arm, rather than the weight,   Bottom line, to lmage with an 8 inch scope, you are going to spend 800-1500 bucks on the mount, depending on what it is and whether it is new or used.  People DO make it work with less, but it is a lot of work and taxes your patience.   If you focus on what people here call EAA or astrovideo, which uses short duration images and stacks them, the demands on your mount can be reduced.  Things to think about.

 

jmd  

Mine is an f/4. I do use BackyardEOS and use the video and stacked images for the planets. But I THINK because it's a fast scope my "subs" (I think that is what the term is) can be shorter. When I was trying to find a M51 Saturday I was taking 1:30 subs without any trailing. But I don't think I could go much more than that on this mount. 

$8-1500, that's just about a HEQ6 new. I'd buy new at that price. 

There is a Hypertuned Atlas on here for 900 but he won't ship. That's OK I can't buy one yet anyway. 



#16 Wildetelescope

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 09:11 AM

Mine is an f/4. I do use BackyardEOS and use the video and stacked images for the planets. But I THINK because it's a fast scope my "subs" (I think that is what the term is) can be shorter. When I was trying to find a M51 Saturday I was taking 1:30 subs without any trailing. But I don't think I could go much more than that on this mount. 

$8-1500, that's just about a HEQ6 new. I'd buy new at that price. 

There is a Hypertuned Atlas on here for 900 but he won't ship. That's OK I can't buy one yet anyway. 

You were getting 90 second subs with no trailing on that mount?    Was that with or without guiding?  That is darn good if you are not guiding.  If you do guide, then an HEQ 5 might work for you since you are using the shorter astrograph.   For short duration imaging.  But if you really get into it, you WILL eventually want to upgrade.

 

For imaging, there are two general approaches that folks take.  One approach is do your research, buy exactly what you need and buy it once.  In the short term this is expensive, but in the long term you will certainly save money.  This approach REALLY assumes that you KNOW what you want to do and you are dedicated enough to the hobby to make the investment worthwhile.  If this is the case, then for sure it makes sense to save and buy the best gear, once. 

 

The second approach is to buy what you can afford at the time, learn all you can with it (and there is a LOT to learn) and accept the fact you will eventually grow out of that gear and want to upgrade.   The advantage is that for a smaller investment up front, you get exposed to the glory that is imaging, have the opportunity to learn what it is you REALLY want to do/image) and then once you are ready, you plunk down the real cash to upgrade and optimize your rig.  But you may spend significantly more money over the long haul, depending on the number of iterations you go through. I have taken the second approach and not regretted it, BUT that is really a personal choice.  You might decide that short duration stuff and postcard quality images are enough to make you happy(as I pretty much have) in which case you bought your mount for a lifetime anyway.

 

There is no one way to go about this.  The bigger trick is to be able to make time to get out with WHATEVER gear you have and learn all you can learn. 

 

BTW, I started out small with two young children and my gear grew as they did.  Now they are old enough to be using the initial gear that I started with 10 years ago or so, so Nothing is ever wasted:-) 

 

Good Luck!

 

JMD



#17 Ryan1776

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Posted 16 September 2019 - 10:11 AM

You were getting 90 second subs with no trailing on that mount?    Was that with or without guiding?  That is darn good if you are not guiding.  If you do guide, then an HEQ 5 might work for you since you are using the shorter astrograph.   For short duration imaging.  But if you really get into it, you WILL eventually want to upgrade.

 

For imaging, there are two general approaches that folks take.  One approach is do your research, buy exactly what you need and buy it once.  In the short term this is expensive, but in the long term you will certainly save money.  This approach REALLY assumes that you KNOW what you want to do and you are dedicated enough to the hobby to make the investment worthwhile.  If this is the case, then for sure it makes sense to save and buy the best gear, once. 

 

The second approach is to buy what you can afford at the time, learn all you can with it (and there is a LOT to learn) and accept the fact you will eventually grow out of that gear and want to upgrade.   The advantage is that for a smaller investment up front, you get exposed to the glory that is imaging, have the opportunity to learn what it is you REALLY want to do/image) and then once you are ready, you plunk down the real cash to upgrade and optimize your rig.  But you may spend significantly more money over the long haul, depending on the number of iterations you go through. I have taken the second approach and not regretted it, BUT that is really a personal choice.  You might decide that short duration stuff and postcard quality images are enough to make you happy(as I pretty much have) in which case you bought your mount for a lifetime anyway.

 

There is no one way to go about this.  The bigger trick is to be able to make time to get out with WHATEVER gear you have and learn all you can learn. 

 

BTW, I started out small with two young children and my gear grew as they did.  Now they are old enough to be using the initial gear that I started with 10 years ago or so, so Nothing is ever wasted:-) 

 

Good Luck!

 

JMD

JBM, 

No guiding. I don't have a guide scope or anything. I don't have any of the photos anymore as the only reason I took them was to try and catch M51 and failed. So I tossed them. 

 

Thread here......if you care. haha 

https://www.cloudyni...ert-i-failed-d/

 

1min

1min sub.jpg

30sec

30sec sub.jpg

 

At the 1 min you can certainly tell the amount of skyglow in that photo. So I'll be getting a filter here pretty quick. 

Actually, I have this one. Cheap but might be somewhat useful. 

https://www.amazon.c...0?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

My other big hobby is ham radio. So you're 100% accurate about the two ways to approach an expensive hobby. I've employed both from time to time. 

 

Part of me is trying to determine how capable my scope is for AP. If the scope itself isn't that capable I don't want to throw a grand + at a mount to drive it.

I'd get a William Optics 61mm APO doublet, field flattener, iOptron Skyguider Pro; all those BRAND NEW is $1100. And I won't buy it new. I'll just wait out and jump on a used set of parts. And I'll be set for quite a few different objects to photograph. 

 

I'll keep my setup as is for viewing the planets and moon. Especially considering viewing nebula and galaxies aren't THAT impressive compared to images. 

 

Now if my scope IS capable and can pull double duty, viewing and AP, I'll have no problems buying a solid mount for it. I'll get an HEQ5 (6) or equiv for 7-800 and do some DSO work with my Newt for a while and have a solid platform to get a larger WO 81 or 123 or something like that and future proof myself, I'm OK with that. 

 

I'm kind of in the middle. 
I like things that I can double duty with. Sorta like kitchen stuff, I don't like uni-taskers. They take up space and money. lol.gif  Thanks Alton Brown. 

 

On the other side of the same hand, I really liked knowing what things CAN do, not what limitations they have based on biased opinions. 
Back to ham radio, I shouldn't have been able to talk to Australia from Michigan with 100 watts and a wire in my backyard at 12' at the current solar cycle. But I have made the trip, 9,900 miles. 

I've since put up a 40' tower and a big antenna and has made that effort significantly easier. 

 

I know that is more of a Socratic method answer, but as you aptly pointed out, I need to figure out what I really want to do. I also need to determine what my current equipment is capable of with some properly spec'ed support equipment. 

 

Ryan


Edited by Ryan1776, 16 September 2019 - 12:22 PM.



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