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Is anyone else tired of the hassle?

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#76 clamchip

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 04:29 PM

This is my favorite telescope a Edmund 5 inch f/15.

The mounting belongs to my Cave 10 inch Cassegrain and is not my favorite

mount but together these two are my absolute favorite instrument of all time.

I can get tired of equatorials, not this one, this one is different. And you just

roll it out and plug it in.

There's nothing like high power hands free observing. And with the f/15's

huge depth of focus I don't even need to make focus corrections. My only

physical job is to move my eye lids to keep my eyeballs from drying out.

I can relax and devote 100% to studying what's in the eyepiece.

Robert

 

IMG_9797.jpg


Edited by clamchip, 13 October 2021 - 04:36 PM.

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#77 Bomber Bob

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 04:33 PM

Thanks. And the Mizar is different yet from the EQ mount TeleVue used to sell with their 4” scopes, right? I think that one was made by Carton? It was really nice looking and I’d love to have my TV85 on one. But the AstroView works fine...just doesn’t look as neat.

Yes, TV's System Mount is the Carton CST Series EQ...

 

FYI:  For Years, I thought Meade's Ugly, Clunk, Square-Axis EQ was their own weird creation... Nope!  It's a Mizar, too...


Edited by Bomber Bob, 13 October 2021 - 04:34 PM.

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#78 Mr Magoo

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 04:54 PM

I have and use both GEMS and Dob mounts. I only own one modern go to mount and it is mostly used for public outreach. 


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#79 CHASLX200

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 06:24 PM

My alt/az mounts get used a lot more than my GEMs.

 

I removed the motors on my CG5 years ago. A manual GEM with slow motion cables does have the advantage over an alt/az in that you only need to turn one axis to keep an object centered. Even so, my one-trip-out-the-door alt/az mounts get more use.

 

My 4 mounts listed in order of use…

 

1. My UA Macrostar gets a lot of use for solar and deep sky observing, where lower powers are used the most.

 

2. My DSV-3 twin mount with slow motion cables also gets a lot of use for duel scope deep sky observing and because it has slow motion controls it gets a lot of use for higher power observing on the moon and planets.

 

3. My manual CG5 gets used for more extended, single object lunar or planetary observing. I presume because of profitability and our “electronic culture” manufacturers don’t offer many GEMs that can be used manually with slow motion cables. Simplicity does have advantages. Hand tracking at 400x and keeping the object nearly centered is easy.

 

4. My Celestron AVX gets the least use. When I use it I realize it’s nice to have tracking but in the end the “hassle” of set up always seems to outweigh the somewhat limited benefit of motorized tracking for visual observing.

 

Some images below…

My DSV-3 with a Tak TSA 120 and a 102mm F5 refractor getting ready for some Night Vision deep sky observing

 

My manual CG5 with slow motion cables

 

Bob

Hope it was better than mine was when i got it in 1997.  I know they got better after time when they went to the bigger tripods.



#80 CHASLX200

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 06:28 PM

Yes, TV's System Mount is the Carton CST Series EQ...

 

FYI:  For Years, I thought Meade's Ugly, Clunk, Square-Axis EQ was their own weird creation... Nope!  It's a Mizar, too...

Meade used to sell a GEM SCT that was made to compete with the SP C-8 back around 1987. Not sure who made the EQ mount for the GEM. But it was a flop and Meade stopped selling it soon after it came out.



#81 Tim Hager

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 07:15 PM

I have always preferred equatorial mounts ever since my 4" Criterion in the 1960's.  Tracking is nice but even without it, I always have liked the convenience of star hopping with a "close enough" polar alignment knowing that I'm moving north, south, east and west with the scope.  It is always easy to calculate how far to move north or south from a pilot star and then sweep in RA to find your target.  All you need to know is the field of view of your eyepiece.  I blame Sam Brown in All About Telescopes for teaching me the "right angle sweep.". grin.gif


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#82 Bomber Bob

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 08:36 PM

Meade used to sell a GEM SCT that was made to compete with the SP C-8 back around 1987. Not sure who made the EQ mount for the GEM. But it was a flop and Meade stopped selling it soon after it came out.

That's the one.  Original Mizars are white / off-white, and carried the Altair 150 -- maybe other large scopes as well.



#83 Bomber Bob

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 08:37 PM

I have always preferred equatorial mounts ever since my 4" Criterion in the 1960's.  Tracking is nice but even without it, I always have liked the convenience of star hopping with a "close enough" polar alignment knowing that I'm moving north, south, east and west with the scope.  It is always easy to calculate how far to move north or south from a pilot star and then sweep in RA to find your target.  All you need to know is the field of view of your eyepiece.  I blame Sam Brown in All About Telescopes for teaching me the "right angle sweep.". grin.gif

I use that technique, too.  It's been decades, but I think I first read about it in Astronomy magazine.


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#84 Sarkikos

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 08:59 PM

I haven't paid any attention to RA and Dec for years.  I star hop comparing the view on SkySafari Pro with what I see in the finder scope and the main telescope.  Any consideration of RA and Dec would just slow me down.

 

Those objects in the sky don't care what RA and Dec they have.  Why should I?  :shrug:

 

Mike


Edited by Sarkikos, 13 October 2021 - 09:01 PM.

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#85 Terra Nova

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 09:13 PM

I haven't paid any attention to RA and Dec for years.  I star hop comparing the view on SkySafari Pro with what I see in the finder scope and the main telescope.  Any consideration of RA and Dec would just slow me down.

 

Those objects in the sky don't care what RA and Dec they have.  Why should I?  shrug.gif

 

Mike

The nice thing about Sky Safari is that it also gives current altitude and azimuth coordinates. If you level your alt-az mount, you can use a digital level to put your tube at rhe correct altitude, use a compass for azimuth (general direction works) and sweep back and forth a few degrees, bingo!


Edited by Terra Nova, 13 October 2021 - 09:14 PM.

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#86 Sarkikos

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 10:00 PM

The nice thing about Sky Safari is that it also gives current altitude and azimuth coordinates. If you level your alt-az mount, you can use a digital level to put your tube at rhe correct altitude, use a compass for azimuth (general direction works) and sweep back and forth a few degrees, bingo!

There was a guy at the observing site I used to go to, that would do something like this.  One early evening he showed me how he could find a Messier object in the haze and glow of the western sky.  True enough, it was right there in his eyepiece ... but washed out and not very impressive to see.  I asked him wouldn't it be better to wait until you can see it when it's positioned much more clearly higher in the sky at night?  thinking1.gif

 

In the back of my mind, I always thought he was just too lazy to learn the constellations and stars better, because he used the alt-az coordinate method to find everything everywhere!

 

I've been star hopping to so many objects for so many years that any other method seems like too much bother.  grin.gif

 

Mike


Edited by Sarkikos, 14 October 2021 - 08:37 AM.

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#87 Bowlerhat

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 11:07 PM

Vixen Porta-II is my staple grab and go. 

Agreed 100% Aligning is a hassle in south. With this I don't need to worry about a thing.

Just need to replace the flush bolts with knobs to make tensions adjustment easier.

Modified Vixen Porta

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#88 CHASLX200

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 05:49 AM

Alt - AZ is just a pain at very high powers trying to keep a planet in the FOV. I mean like 600x and up. Once you hit 1000x it gets to the point the image maybe great but the insane speed the object flies thru the FOV makes a EQ mount much better since you only gotta deal with one axis.  At low powers i would be fine with a WELL MADE ALT- AZ mount and i have yet to own one.


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#89 steve t

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 09:39 AM

Just my two cents.

 

The hassle factor is the main reason I've gone back to using my first telescope a 4" Newtonian. Even though it's on an equatorial mount, it's still light enough that I can carry it out on one trip and be ready to observe in a few minutes (quick cool down).

 

I have a nice 6" Newtonian on a Losmandy mount, but it is such a pain to set up and tear down (not to mention cool down time) I rarely set it up any more.

 

My observing interest have also shifted over the years from chasing faint fuzzies to more solar system and variable stars.

 

One of the big benefits I've noticed is that I spend more time observing with the 4" than I ever did with the 6". 

 

Last year, as my COVID project, I updated the OTA and now consider it my poor man's Celestar 4 lol.gif .

 

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#90 MDT

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 09:52 AM

My days of having a pier in the backyard are past. My eyes aren't what they used to be, not to mention my back and my knees.

I haven't done any serious astro-photography since the days of film.

I sold any scope that weighs more than an old C-8 that I kept. Now I look through a couple of C90's that I use on modified EQ1 mounts.

Also, I use binoculars more and more these days. 


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#91 Bomber Bob

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 11:43 AM

The hassle factor is the main reason I've gone back to using my first telescope a 4" Newtonian.

 

I know what you mean...  I bought the 100mm F8 Mizar Comet as a lark & out of curiosity, but find myself using it fairly often:

 

Mizar Comet 1st Set Up S02 - FULL LS.jpg

 

So light & easy to use with fine views, too!


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#92 Terra Nova

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 12:25 PM

There was a guy at the observing site I used to go to, that would do something like this.  One early evening he showed me how he could find a Messier object in the haze and glow of the western sky.  True enough, it was right there in his eyepiece ... but washed out and not very impressive to see.  I asked him wouldn't it be better to wait until you can see it when it's positioned much more clearly higher in the sky at night?  thinking1.gif

 

In the back of my mind, I always thought he was just too lazy to learn the constellations and stars better, because he used the alt-az coordinate method to find everything everywhere!

 

I've been star hopping to so many objects for so many years that any other method seems like too much bother.  grin.gif

 

Mike

It’s a worthwhile method in areas where light pollution is a significant hindrance in one’s ability to see enough of the constellations to star hop.


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#93 Terra Nova

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 12:28 PM

Alt - AZ is just a pain at very high powers trying to keep a planet in the FOV. I mean like 600x and up. Once you hit 1000x it gets to the point the image maybe great but the insane speed the object flies thru the FOV makes a EQ mount much better since you only gotta deal with one axis.  At low powers i would be fine with a WELL MADE ALT- AZ mount and i have yet to own one.

For me around here and consequently with the scopes I have, 300X is a stretch and 200X is my far more common upper limit.


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#94 steve t

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 01:06 PM

The hassle factor is the main reason I've gone back to using my first telescope a 4" Newtonian.

 

I know what you mean...  I bought the 100mm F8 Mizar Comet as a lark & out of curiosity, but find myself using it fairly often:

 

attachicon.gifMizar Comet 1st Set Up S02 - FULL LS.jpg

 

So light & easy to use with fine views, too!

BB - That is a very nice looking scope.


 

I don't know if you've run into this, but the one thing I found interesting about this little scope is how narrow the point of best focus is. The old University Optics N.S. focuser was a challenge to use, so I replaced it with a duel speed one and that solved that problem.  


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#95 Alanvogt

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 03:30 PM

Happy birthday Terra,

I guess I'm in both camps.  When I shop for classics it HAS to be on a GEM. It's just right. I like to keep them on their original mount if possible, I usually use them to look at planets and they are low in the sky here in Seattle.  When 35 people are standing in line to look at Saturn, it's nice to be ably to just twist one knob between viewers. I almost never look at dso's through my classic refractors. So:

Family room.jpg

But when I'm at my dark sky site (Goldendale Sky Village, look it up on Youtube ) to look at faint fuzzys,  I prefer bigger SCT's on computerized fork mounts.  So we have:

hall.jpg

The rest of my modern OTA's sit on vixen dovetails so I have a couple of modern GEM's that I can switch between :

Alan town.jpg

I'm just turning 65 and have only been doing this for 5 years now. I have my setup time for ALL my mounts to under 10 minutes and I LOVE fiddeling with all the knobs and adjustments.  I think it triggers the same parts of my brain that sailing has done for the last forty five years.  Maybe in 10 years or so I'll slow down but right now the only limit I have is the size of my house. It's filling up with telescopes!smile.gif

 


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#96 Terra Nova

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 07:06 PM

Hi Alan,

 

I’m glad you’re having fun and striking a happy medium of what works best for what. That’s what’s important.

 

Maybe in 10 years or so I'll slow down but right now the only limit I have is the size of my house. It's filling up with telescopes!“

 

I hear ya! I was there just a few years ago. I had scopes on display in every prominant corner, scopes in the closets, scopes under the beds, and scopes just about anywhere else I could store them. I had lost count of what I had. Things are considerably cleared out now. Ten is my manageable number. 


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#97 Alanvogt

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 07:45 PM

"I hear ya! I was there just a few years ago. I had scopes on display in every prominant corner, scopes in the closets, scopes under the beds, and scopes just about anywhere else I could store them. I had lost count of what I had. Things are considerably cleared out now. Ten is my manageable number."

 

I hear you but I'm still new at this and love ALL my telescopes. So far I've only gotten rid of 3 telescopes and I gave them away. I am close to having most of the scopes I really want. Still need a 3" Unitron and a Questar, but I have plenty of time. At my dark sky site there are a half dozen 24" or greater Dobs and I get to look through them....  WOW!!! But where would I put one?

By the way, I visited Robert's house last week and he has WAY more telescopes than me.lol.gif 

Alan


Edited by Alanvogt, 14 October 2021 - 07:53 PM.

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#98 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 07:50 PM

I have my setup time for ALL my mounts to under 10 minutes and I LOVE fiddeling with all the knobs and adjustments.

 

 

waytogo.gif

 

That's something that no one ever talks about but I'm definitely a life long knob twister, lever puller, tinkerer and adjuster.. sometimes I'm sitting there with my refractor on an alt-az mount with slow motion controls, looking at some Dawes limit double at 300 x plus, one hand on each slo-mo control, swapping eyepieces and refocusing and I'm thinking to myself;

 

"Am I out here to split that beautiful double or is it just a reason for me twist all these knobs?"  smile.gif

 

As a young man, I owned my own 18 wheeler, I hauled hay with it, a load was a bit over 50,000 pounds. It was old school, two sticks, two transmissions, to shift at once, no synchros..  I was in knob twisting, lever pulling, button pushing heaven.

 

Jon


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#99 clearwaterdave

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 08:03 PM

Happy day to you Terra.,And thank you for all of your help and support for members of CloudyNights.,

  I don't really like either type of mount.,lol.,The reason being where the eyepiece ends up.,With the eq's they can end up anywhere.,and with the Alt-az they are way up.,.way down.,an everywhere in between.,

  I got tired of constantly trying to get the chair height right.,or sitting on a little seat 3ft off the ground.,or with my knees next to my ears.,

  I built a mount that solved my problem and has made using my refractors a treat for me.,

I call it a seesaw mount and I named it Frank.,and we are living happily ever after.

Frank brings me the eyepiece to the same height no matter where the target is.,and holds my scopes steady and true.,

I do wish others could come and try it out.,With my comfy chair and Frank I can enjoy a hassle free night without getting up once if I choose not to.,.and it stays outside ready to go.,Best2u 

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#100 Jim Curry

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 08:07 PM

Leave it to a Mainah!


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