While I agree with Don on his point, I would say that it is also beneficial to even the pressure loading on the Teflon bearing.
If the weight gets very uneven, mounts with Teflon bearings (often used for a clutch) can pinch and distort (wave) under an asymmetric load causing extra resistance. If loads are light, this is not really an issue, but as the tubes get bigger and heavier, the moment of balance moves progressively further from the azimuth axis giving a more asymmetric load to nylon bearings and clutch washers. In the absence of any compressible material, using a counterweight is less necessary but any time a nylon or Teflon bearing is used, the best result, which is not the same thing as an acceptable result, which means that each individual picks the threshold where they deem it necessary, the loading should be symmetrical.
This is a smooth mount that uses a 2" Teflon bearing and a stainless roller bearing on each axis
Edited by Eddgie, 11 July 2020 - 12:07 PM.