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Skywatcher EQ3 with SkyMax 150?

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#1 Bob Dunn

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 09:01 PM

Good day,

 

I have the Skywatcher EQ3 tripod, and the only Skywatcher SkyMax I can get locally (or almost anywhere) is the 150. I’m interested in only visual observing, mostly of planets and the moon. (I have no interest in AP). 
Will this tripod/telescope combination perform satisfactorily at what I’m interested in?

Thanks,

Bob

 

Edit: EQ3 max payload is 5.5kg 

SkyMax MAK OTAW is 5.6kg (According to sellers website with: finder, diagonal, eyepiece, v-rail =6.4kg) I will replace finder scope with a lightweight red dot.


Edited by Bob Dunn, 13 October 2021 - 09:10 PM.

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#2 Stellar1

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 09:52 PM

Most manufacturers tend to underrate load capacities, I believe. The skymax 150 which I have owned is a weighty OTA but, I cant see it being too much for the EQ3, whether or not you'll find it steady enough at high powers only you will tell. If it is properly balanced I cant see it being a big issue, I'm sure others will "weigh" in (no pun intended).

 

BTW, you certainly chose a great scope for planetary/lunar observing, its a killer in that department.



#3 maroubra_boy

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Posted 13 October 2021 - 11:32 PM

Hello Bob,

 

A 150mm Mak is right on the listed limit of the capacity of an EQ3.  Even if you managed to balance the scope along with all accessories, it will be the tripod that is the weak point.  You will find that this scope and mount combination will wobble a lot when you touch the focuser.

 

You would be better served with an EQ5 mount.  Much more robust for a 150mm Mak.

 

Alex.


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#4 alnitak22

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 06:57 AM

Bob,

 

I agree with Alex on this. I have an Orion Astroview/EQ3 mount. Looking online, it appears to be the same as the Skywatcher EQ3. Does your mount have the aluminum legs? I got the Astroview for use with my TV85, which weighs about 9.5 lbs with 2” diagonal and eyepiece. I found the mount took well over 3 seconds to settle down from focusing up over 120x. I swapped the aluminum legs for some oak legs and this solved the problem. However, I recently purchased an Orion 6” Mak and the Skyview Pro mount. The mount was delayed a couple of days and i got the scope first, so I put it on the Astroview to check the optics by day. Even at 100x, the shakes again take over 3 seconds to subside. This was with a rather light Celestron Ultima 18mm eyepiece. So even with the upgraded tripod, damping time is considerable. I guess it would depend on your personal tolerance level. With the Mak on the Skyview Pro and with the same eyepiece, there is no shaking at all. The 6” Mak is a very sharp scope but it may be hard for you to best utilize it’s capabilities for higher power on the EQ3. I don’t know where you’re located but Orion has their 5” Mak in stock which would be a good match for your mount.


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#5 gene 4181

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 07:51 AM

 Welcome to Cloudy Nights  Bob.  Might I recommend the Skywatcher AZ 4 mount  , that will handle the 150 mak  easily , I used one for years till i gave my  mak away last year to newbies trying to start up in the hobby. Tracking is by hand , alt-az  , very intuitive actually  and the eyepiece swings in a less than 8inch arc . Your SW 3 EQ  head  will mount on this tripod  or you might find this a better alternative to the mount you have . Just a suggestion  to think about , they're  reasonably priced over there (UK) , can't get them here unless you order from Canada.


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#6 sevenofnine

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 02:06 PM

If you would rather stick with the mount you have, consider the Orion Apex 127. For the Moon and planets it works great and it's in stock at Orion.com. Best of luck to you! waytogo.gif


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#7 fcathell

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Posted 14 October 2021 - 11:49 PM

I've  used a 6" Mak on an old Orion Astroview mount which is essentially an EQ-3 mount and it worked fine for visual use. I would want a larger mount if I were doing imaging, but for strictly visual, it worked just fine.  I also had a 50mm finder on it.

 

Frank 



#8 Bob Dunn

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Posted 15 October 2021 - 07:31 PM

I have purchased the SkyMax 150.

In the end, it came down to this: I was adamant about buying locally—it will be him who gives advice, supplies eyepieces, accessories, etc. The 127 is back ordered with delivery not even on the horizon, so in the end the 150 was really my only choice, if I wanted a telescope this fall.

I’m hoping it will perform adequately for visual observing. I’ll report, hopefully in a few weeks with what I find.

Thank you all for your very generous and thoughtful advice.

 

 Bob


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#9 fcathell

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Posted 15 October 2021 - 10:31 PM

Bob - one other thing - if you have some mount vibrations which are common with aluminum tripod legs, get 3 vibration dampener pads.  Several people make them but I think the Celestron ones are the best. 

 

Frank


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#10 alnitak22

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Posted 16 October 2021 - 07:07 AM

I have purchased the SkyMax 150.

In the end, it came down to this: I was adamant about buying locally—it will be him who gives advice, supplies eyepieces, accessories, etc. The 127 is back ordered with delivery not even on the horizon, so in the end the 150 was really my only choice, if I wanted a telescope this fall.

I’m hoping it will perform adequately for visual observing. I’ll report, hopefully in a few weeks with what I find.

Thank you all for your very generous and thoughtful advice.

 

 Bob

Good luck to you with the setup. I just got a 6” Mak and absolutely love it. And please do report how it works out for you.


Edited by alnitak22, 16 October 2021 - 05:03 PM.



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