Good extremely compact mount?
Posted 16 September 2019 - 10:57 AM
What's a good ultra-portable mount for small telescopes? Something rugged and compact... lightness isn't as important as packed size. But also, reasonably pleasant to use. And preferably not too expensive (ideally not over $250-300 unless it has to be).
Posted 16 September 2019 - 11:13 AM
I'm thinking Vixen Porta II on APP-TL130 tripod.
The APP-TL130 tripod is quite compact when collapsed. And the Porta II is about the most pleasant-to-use mount I have tried. It even has slow-motion controls.
Posted 16 September 2019 - 11:19 AM
Vixen Porta Mount, ES Twilight, Orion VersaGo II....
Posted 16 September 2019 - 11:26 AM
An 80 f/5 will ride on an AZ3. This mount has is quirks, but I think they can be overlooked with
an 80 f/5. This mount is now being marketed as celestron heavy duty alt-az mount.
The es tw1 or portamount will work very nicely too, more money and bigger.
I think there is a mini porta, I don't have it and cannot speak to it.
I just sold a AZ3 head here for $20 here, so you can probably pick one up used, if you can find or
make legs for it. Shipping those would be expensive.
Posted 16 September 2019 - 11:32 AM
Posted 16 September 2019 - 11:34 AM
Porta or Travel Porta are nice options: with the adpater can use photographic tripods which are smaller than the APP-TL130 (but also more expensive).
Otherwise could look for a MiniGiro mount (the one here depicted is not the MiniGiro; a very similar mount is also the Berlebach Castor):
The head is smaller than a man's fist and weighs around 1kg, but the actual result depends on the tripod you pick/own/adapt. Also, no slo-mo knobs, if are fond of them.Those heads sell for 170€-220€ (depends on the accessories such as double clamps or counterweight rod), and for a suitable tripod may think to add 100€ or so (given the size of the tubes you want to use do not need a "boutique" model to attain good stiffness).
Personally am very fond of ballheads:
I have the previous model of this one https://www.teleskop...Tragekraft.html
and for this kind of work is good (even if not smaller than the mini T mount), even if my unit is mechanically very rough and rather unfit* for its designed purpose (photography) except at short exposures. In any case is much cheaper than any half-decent alt/az mount I can think of
*can not be reliably locked, but it is not an issue anymore if has to be used with clutches fully released. I had however to clear from its sticky glue-lubricant and apply a lithium-based grease
- eros312 and johrich like this
Posted 16 September 2019 - 12:27 PM
Posted 16 September 2019 - 07:08 PM
I think Universal Astronomics is gone. You might get one used.
Posted 16 September 2019 - 08:51 PM
Unfortunately Universal Astronomics is no longer in business.
Posted 18 September 2019 - 08:39 AM
An EQ1 equatorial mount mount should fit in a backpack with the scope. At $119 from a major astro equipment dealer, it fits your budget. An additional $70 gets you the motor drive for the ra axis. The detechable legs would have to be strapped to the outside of the backpack.
- hcf likes this
Posted 18 September 2019 - 11:40 AM
I use my ST80 on a Stellarvue M1V with a carbon fiber tripod I got hand-me-down from my photographer wife. It has no slomo controls though so might be a bit of bother using it with the C90. This combination will definitely fit in a backpack.
I have an ETX90 and I use it on the Skywatcher AZ-GTi. The tripod which comes with that mount is a bit long for a backpack but you could strap it on or substitute another.
Posted 18 September 2019 - 03:39 PM
My smallest mount is the UA Microstar Deluxe on a Benro tripod. Good for small cats and 80mm refractors. If you want something powered then the iOptron Cube II or with more capacity and go-to the Orion Star Seeker IV. the SW AZ GTi looks good also but I don't have one of those.