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Balancing with a light Counterweight

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#1 vnc1218

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 12:57 AM

Hi there.  I recently purchased a Skywatcher EQ6-R Pro and plan on using my Nikon d5300 and telephoto lens to get the hang of it before I jump all in with a scope.  But I’m having some trouble balancing the camera and lens.  Obviously the 11 lbs counterweight doesn’t work.  The lens and camera are about 2 lbs all together, so I’m wondering what to do.  Do I even need to balance?  The problem is that without any weights ( and the shaft extended), the mount is not balanced, and the camera side falls toward the floor .  Anybody have any cheap solutions to a very light counterweight (if I need one at all)?  I can’t bring myself to spend the ridiculous 30$ for a 1 or 2 lb counterweight.  I don’t have any tools to make one myself, and want a solution that could work indefinitely without causing problems to the mount/tracking, should I choose to wait a long time until getting a scope.  Thanks!



#2 photomagica

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 01:02 AM

Duct tape and whatever you can find that weighs one or two pounds. Needs to be functional - not pretty.

Bill


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#3 Chuckwagon

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 01:07 AM

Use gaffer tape, its adhesive comes off easier than duct tape.  Or use zip ties if you can get the friction to hold.  Then use a zip lock bag and some rice or sand, find the balance point, and tape it in place.  Simple.  :)


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#4 Napp

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 01:23 AM

You can make your own counterweights out of 2.5lb. weights from the sporting goods section of your local superstore.  Walmart sells them for $2.49.  The hole will be bigger than the shaft but you can get a shaft collar and set screw to hold the weight at the right position.



#5 TOMDEY

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 02:56 AM

Don't skimp on proper balance. That will eventually screw up your drive. Make a cheap weight yourself or buy an ~overpriced~ stock one. The decision will be based on how much you value your time vs paying-up to get on with observing. Either choice is right for the owner,  personal thing. The third option, ignoring it because you don't want to address it... that would be the worst choice; not punishing the manufacturer... only yourself. If the drive is returned with damaged gears... they would be unlikely to warrant the fix.    Tom 


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#6 len2376

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 03:11 AM

Wrist or ankle training weights have a range of weight sizes and come with a velcro strap. Fully tightened would be still to big for your bar but another strap solves that. Smallest size would typically be 1/2kg so ~ 1lb , normally sold as a pair and go up to 3 x 2kg so 6kg ~ 12lb. or so. Relatively cheap.



#7 Galaxyhunter

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 07:01 AM

Hi there.  I recently purchased a Skywatcher EQ6-R Pro and plan on using my Nikon d5300 and telephoto lens to get the hang of it before I jump all in with a scope.  But I’m having some trouble balancing the camera and lens.  Obviously the 11 lbs counterweight doesn’t work.  The lens and camera are about 2 lbs all together, so I’m wondering what to do.  Do I even need to balance?  The problem is that without any weights ( and the shaft extended), the mount is not balanced, and the camera side falls toward the floor .  Anybody have any cheap solutions to a very light counterweight (if I need one at all)?  I can’t bring myself to spend the ridiculous 30$ for a 1 or 2 lb counterweight.  I don’t have any tools to make one myself, and want a solution that could work indefinitely without causing problems to the mount/tracking, should I choose to wait a long time until getting a scope.  Thanks!

As much money you have spent & will spend for this hobby, Are you really going to skimp on getting the right weight to counterbalance?  I can almost bet the house that a new mount will cost more then $30.00. As the old filter commercial from decades ago says: you can pay me now or you can pay me later.



#8 kathyastro

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Posted 15 January 2020 - 08:11 AM

I used a "dumbell" style hand weight, and attached it to the bar with a pair of hose clamps.


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