It's time to build myself a scope dolly to move my Atlas az-eq mount and AT130 triplet from the garage to the back patio for high power visual sessions with double stars and planets. I'll be moving about 110 lbs total weight with counterweights included. Surface to traverse is a fairly smooth concrete driveway and patio so I believe medium size casters, say 3 to 4 inches will suffice. I have seen scads of plans and I'm confident I can cobble up a workable design.
My concern is stability when observing at high power.
It seems about half the designs simply use castors only. And the other half only use the casters to roll into position and then use some type of screw levelling jack to provide a solid base tot he ground.
I would appreciate any feedback on how stable your locking casters are at high power? It just seems they would have to have some wiggle in them due to tolerances in the fit of the moving parts. Any advice on choosing a set of solid sturdy locking casters is also appreciated!
Basically I see a set of tradeoffs like this:
Option 1 - locking casters only:
Pros: simpler design. quick set up.
Cons: possible stability issues. Must do levelling with tripod legs..need room for legs to move on dolly. Need more expensive heavy duty locking casters.
Option 2 - non locking casters plus levelling feet
Pros: more stable. can use cheaper no locking casters. legs can stay fixed to cart. levelling done by the jackscrews.
Cons: more hardware to buy (threaded rod, handles, swiveling footpads) a little harder to implement in the design. more time to setup due to hand turning the levelling screw.
Thanks for any advice before I go buy the parts!