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Almost NOS Meade 7" MCT LX50

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#51 tim53

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Posted 19 June 2022 - 05:58 PM

Okay, folks.  I need help here on a couple things.  In order to do any astrophotography with this thing anytime soon, I need to find a) a simple camera piggyback bracket with a 1/4-20 knob for mounting a camera to it.  You remember those, right?  I have one on Tinky, and there was one on the Meade 10" SCT I had several years back.  But I can't find any for the Meade 7" (would be same for an 8" SCT, of course).  

 

That's the first thing.

 

The other thing I can't seem to find, or find out much about at least, is something like a Vixen dovetail bar to mount on the top of the tube for mounting accessories to, like a guidescope/rings or a piggyback camera bracket.

 

I don't think I have time to make something, as I'm hoping to take this with me to Utah in a week and a half.  But if I can't take pictures with it, I'm not bringing it.  I'll take the Epsilon 130 instead.



#52 jgraham

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Posted 19 June 2022 - 06:36 PM

If I recall right ADM makes rails for the Mak 7.
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#53 tim53

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Posted 19 June 2022 - 06:44 PM

how do they mount to the ota?



#54 jgraham

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Posted 19 June 2022 - 07:39 PM

They attach directly to the front and rear cells using existing holes. I just did a quick check and Farpoint sells a Vixen rail for the Mak 7.
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#55 tim53

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 03:39 PM

Okay, so apparently there is only one hole on each end for the dovetail bar?  So, when it's mounted to the tube, the dovetail is widest AWAY from the tube (so the tube could be mounted in a dovetail saddle?).  So, how do I attach camera brackets or guidescopes to the dovetail??

 

I'm about to hit the place order button on the dovetail, but still need to know how to mount stuff to it.

 

-Tim.



#56 jgraham

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 04:47 PM

They make a variety of clamps and adapters that work with the Vixen rail. This shows the top Vixen rail on my RC8 fitted with a pair of guide scope rings...

 

Atlas RC8 (6-18-2022)-2.jpg

 

Some vendors offer a lighter version of the same sort of rail. I wonder of ScopeStuff has anything.

 

 


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#57 tim53

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 04:53 PM

I called Farpoint, and they're going to get back to me about mounting accessories to the vixen dovetail.  But the more I think about having just one screw at each end of the dovetail supporting whatever I hang on the thing, the less I like it.  So I might go for a Losmandy D dovetail plate, though I'm not thrilled about that much more weight.



#58 jgraham

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 05:36 PM

Given a choice, I use a Vixen rail on scopes up to 8”, then switch to a Losmandy D rail for larger scopes, and these hold the weight of the scope plus accessories. Having said that, my Meade SN10 is mounted on a Vixen rail. For mounting any sort of accessory a Vixen rail is more than enough.

 

Food for thought…

 

P.S.

 

Just for yucks... my SN10...

 

SN10 ZWO ASI071MC (v2).jpg

 

...aka... The Beast!

 

If you look closely you can see that the rings are attached to a Vixen rail using a single bolt.

 

Tough little buggers.

 

smile.gif


Edited by jgraham, 20 June 2022 - 05:40 PM.

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#59 tim53

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 06:27 PM

This looks interesting, with v dovetail on bottom and saddle on top:     https://nimax-img.de...03-Blue-OTA.jpg

 

Like maybe I could mount it upside down on the v rail on the Meade, or take the rail off the WO and mount the rings to the Meade (requiring drilling the Meade, and not being able to easily remove the guide scope).



#60 luxo II

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 06:43 PM

This looks interesting, with v dovetail on bottom and saddle on top:     https://nimax-img.de...03-Blue-OTA.jpg

You could install a pair of radius blocks https://farpointastr...44e5e2d80&_ss=r

and then add a lightweight ADM MDS dovetail bar - this is smaller and lighter than a Vixen one, et fine for piggybacking a finderscope, guidescope or camera.

https://www.admacces...bar-mds-series/

 

Involves some drilling and tapping a few holes to make it all work neatly.


Edited by luxo II, 20 June 2022 - 06:44 PM.


#61 deSitter

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 08:45 PM

This looks interesting, with v dovetail on bottom and saddle on top:     https://nimax-img.de...03-Blue-OTA.jpg

 

Like maybe I could mount it upside down on the v rail on the Meade, or take the rail off the WO and mount the rings to the Meade (requiring drilling the Meade, and not being able to easily remove the guide scope).

I would avoid drilling the Meade at all costs.

 

-drl



#62 tim53

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Posted 20 June 2022 - 10:52 PM

Oops.  I meant drilling the v-dovetail, not the scope.  I'm going to keep that as pristine and original as possible.


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#63 deSitter

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Posted 21 June 2022 - 04:49 AM

Given a choice, I use a Vixen rail on scopes up to 8”, then switch to a Losmandy D rail for larger scopes, and these hold the weight of the scope plus accessories. Having said that, my Meade SN10 is mounted on a Vixen rail. For mounting any sort of accessory a Vixen rail is more than enough.

 

Food for thought…

 

P.S.

 

Just for yucks... my SN10...

 

attachicon.gifSN10 ZWO ASI071MC (v2).jpg

 

...aka... The Beast!

 

If you look closely you can see that the rings are attached to a Vixen rail using a single bolt.

 

Tough little buggers.

 

smile.gif

My 10" f/4.5 is also on a (solid machined aluminum) Vixen bar. It's perfectly sturdy. However, that Meade did come with a cast aluminum bar that was sort of pushing it :) It would visibly bend side to side (torsional motion).

 

-drl



#64 tim53

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Posted 24 June 2022 - 03:23 PM

Got the Meade 7” Mak set up outside “The Expense” observatory at Cosmic Acres for the planets, For when they came up this

morning.
 

This first pair of pictures is from this morning, just before I rigged down.  The third is of the 9.25” with the renaissance piggyback on it, just before closing the roof on the observatory.  The seeing was poor. I tried taking video of Saturn with one of my pt grey scorpion cameras, but Astro iidc would crash when I tried to stack and align the frames. It worked with the pt grey chameleon, but the seeing still wasn’t worth a darn.

 

The Meade mount would be hard to adjust for polar alignment with the weight of the scope on the wedge.  I used a compass app and a bubble

level app to hopefully get close, but Saturn still drifted out of the field in a few

minutes, mostly in Dec. wish this had the heavy duty wedge. The mount tracked reasonably well, but I without a guide scope I can’t experiment with guiding. Depending on how ambitious I feel today, I might cobble something together out of scrap plywood so I can put my tak fc76 on it for guiding.  I compared the planetary views between the mak and my nexstar 9.25”. I had to fine tune the collimation on the 9”, but once I’d done that, the views were as good as the seeing could deliver. The image was noticeably brighter than in the 7”, not surprisingly. But I can’t wait for a chance to compare them in good seeing, which we do sometimes get out here. 
 

 

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#65 davidmcgo

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Posted 24 June 2022 - 06:30 PM

Got the Meade 7” Mak set up outside “The Expense” observatory at Cosmic Acres for the planets, For when they came up this

morning.
 

This first pair of pictures is from this morning, just before I rigged down.  The third is of the 9.25” with the renaissance piggyback on it, just before closing the roof on the observatory.  The seeing was poor. I tried taking video of Saturn with one of my pt grey scorpion cameras, but Astro iidc would crash when I tried to stack and align the frames. It worked with the pt grey chameleon, but the seeing still wasn’t worth a darn.

 

The Meade mount would be hard to adjust for polar alignment with the weight of the scope on the wedge.  I used a compass app and a bubble

level app to hopefully get close, but Saturn still drifted out of the field in a few

minutes, mostly in Dec. wish this had the heavy duty wedge. The mount tracked reasonably well, but I without a guide scope I can’t experiment with guiding. Depending on how ambitious I feel today, I might cobble something together out of scrap plywood so I can put my tak fc76 on it for guiding.  I compared the planetary views between the mak and my nexstar 9.25”. I had to fine tune the collimation on the 9”, but once I’d done that, the views were as good as the seeing could deliver. The image was noticeably brighter than in the 7”, not surprisingly. But I can’t wait for a chance to compare them in good seeing, which we do sometimes get out here. 
 

“The Expense”!  I love it!

 

Dave


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