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Help deciding on a mount

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#1 wachuko

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Posted 02 October 2023 - 08:45 PM

Complete newbie... jumping all in... forgot to add, initial use for this equipment is for just looking at the sky via the eyepiece... later I want to play with cameras, but not now... not immediately.

 

What I have ordered so far (ordered last Friday and today):

 

1. Celestron C6-A SCT OTA (CEL-91010-XLT)
2. Apertura SCT Collimation Knobs (APT-CK-SCT) for making it easier to perform adjustments
3. Celestron f/6.3 Focal Reducer (CEL-94175)
4. Celestron T-Adapter (CEL-93633-A)
5. Celestron T-Ring for Nikon Camera Attachment (CEL-93402)
6. Celestron 6" Aluminum Dew Shield with Cap (CEL-94020)
7. Astro-Tech 2X Telecentric Extender Barlow for 1.25" eyepieces (AT2XTB)

 

Ordered these books as recommended reading from the forum:

 

1. The Backyard Astronomer's Guide
2. Observer's Sky Atlas: The 500 Best Deep-Sky Objects with Charts and Images

 

Here is where I need help... What mount to get.  This is a bit confusing with so many options available.  I want something that can hold more equipment in case I get really hooked and want to try a different (heavier) setup.  CEM vs Strain Wave mounts… not sure I get the difference on these… they are lighter for sure… A more traditional mount is less expensive but heavier…  Trying to decide between (and I could use some feedback from those here in the forum):


1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount


2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?


3. iOptron CEM40 Center Balance Equatorial Mount with iPolar, Hard Case and 1.75" LiteRoc Tripod

 

 

And, later looking at adding (not in any specific order):

 

1. Omegon Astro Observation Chair – not getting any younger, need to be comfortable watching through the eyepiece…
2. Celestron Ultima Edge - 10mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
3. Celestron Ultima Edge - 15mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
4. Celestron Ultima Edge - 24mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
5. Baader Planetarium T-2 Maxbright 1.25" Mirror Diagonal (BAD-MAX-1)
6. Baader Deluxe Short SCT T-Adapter (BAD-T2-21)
7. Baader Planetarium Clicklock 1.25"/T2 Eyepiece Holder (BAD-T2-08)
8. Baader 15 mm T-2 Extension Tube (BAD-T2-25A)
9. ZWO camera – just to play… so not sure which one, budget friendly, would be a good one to wet my feet with… I currently have a Nikon D200 and a D3200 that I can use for now
10. I will need something to control the camera… need to research this more when I am ready to use a ZWO camera…
11. Starizona HyperStar 6 v4 – because I am easily influenced… talk about an ignorant with initiative…
12. Celestron 6" Dew Heater Ring (CEL-94050) and I will need something to control it…

 

Pretty sure I am missing a lot of stuff... but for now I just want to get the basic stuff that will get me started with my OTA.  Reason for asking about the mount to go with.  


Edited by wachuko, 02 October 2023 - 08:47 PM.


#2 jerobe

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Posted 02 October 2023 - 09:06 PM

You have certainly done your research.  Will you be observing, and later imaging, from your home and yard area, or will you be driving somewhere to a dark site for an evening session?  Are there any stairs involved?  The set up, transport and lugging around of the mount and the rest of the equipment  may help you decide just how much bulk you can contend with.


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#3 wachuko

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Posted 02 October 2023 - 09:20 PM

You have certainly done your research.  Will you be observing, and later imaging, from your home and yard area, or will you be driving somewhere to a dark site for an evening session?  Are there any stairs involved?  The set up, transport and lugging around of the mount and the rest of the equipment  may help you decide just how much bulk you can contend with.

Excellent questions.

 

Correct.  Plan is observing first and much later, imaging.

 

Initially, my plan is to do this from the backyard at the house in Ocala (we are in the process of moving from Orlando to Ocala... ) No stairs involved at home.  

 

I do not know how hooked I will be... I do love going camping and enjoy just laying on the ground looking up at the night sky... The idea of taking the equipment with me would be cool... 



#4 JohnBear

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Posted 02 October 2023 - 11:37 PM

Looks like you are off to a pretty good start. as you seem know, there are quite a few paths that can be taken in astronomy.  I suggest you look into a local astronomy club (https://www.go-astro...te.php?State=FL) before buying much more equipment or excessories. Oh, yes - and get out to some Star Parties!

 

Being in a club will likely give you easy access to a variety of telescopes, as well as  experienced owners to help you understand their pros and cons.  You may also want to stop at a local library and see if they offer loaner telescope kits (nice tabletop Dobs, usually) that you can check out for free!  

 

I think you may get hooked - once you learn the skies - and the ''astronomical seasons'.

 

Jupiter's opposition is coming up soon in early November, so be prepared to spend several evenings watching our nearest gas giant planet with a bunch of interesting features (it also does a complete rotation in only 10 hours) and moons (possibly home to some forms of alien life). Try to observe a moon shadow transit of Jupiter - they are fairly common, easy to see, and just a bit amazing to observe!

 

As for a mount, i would suggest looking for an affordable Alt- Az manual mount (with Slo-mo knobs) like the Celestron Heavy-Duty (actually only medium duty, but very useful to have) as an alternative/option to your more expensive heavy duty primary tripod. I found a nice used Alt-Az tripod locally for $50, and it holds several different kinds of scopes, and is really handy for Grab & Go situations,


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#5 Sacred Heart

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Posted 03 October 2023 - 01:21 AM

wachuko,

 

Welcome to CN.

 

Congratulations on your purchase so far.   By all means, join an astronomy club, go to star parties, public or private.

 

Astronomy is putting the mount / tripod first.  Sturdy tripod, reliable mount.  Do your research on mounts, very carefully. There are a bunch of things that affect the mounts performance.  Weight, physical size of the OTA, focal length, wind. Imaging puts high demands on your mount, accuracy.  Think about this, but don't worry about it just yet.  You are just getting the basics down now.  Viewing, polar aligning, and pointing. Polar alignment and pointing work together but are two entirely separate things.  Your mount will need to be polar aligned, and be able to point correctly.  This is easy to do even with no camera.

 

Schmidt Cassegrain telescopes are dew catchers by nature.  If you do not have a dew shield, make one, very easy to make.

 

Imaging,  your C6 can do good on the Moon and planets.  Deep sky too, EAA style is what I would recommend first - Sharpcap live stack.

 

Viewing, what you will be doing first, it will take a while but you will have a good selection of eyepieces, a barlow and a lunar filter / neutral density filter for the Moon.  Don't have a lunar filter, use sun glasses.

 

Be careful, you can go broke quick on this stuff.

 

Good luck,   Joe


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#6 wachuko

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Posted 03 October 2023 - 11:11 AM

Looks like you are off to a pretty good start. as you seem know, there are quite a few paths that can be taken in astronomy.  I suggest you look into a local astronomy club (https://www.go-astro...te.php?State=FL) before buying much more equipment or excessories. Oh, yes - and get out to some Star Parties!

 

Being in a club will likely give you easy access to a variety of telescopes, as well as  experienced owners to help you understand their pros and cons.  You may also want to stop at a local library and see if they offer loaner telescope kits (nice tabletop Dobs, usually) that you can check out for free!  

 

I think you may get hooked - once you learn the skies - and the ''astronomical seasons'.

 

Jupiter's opposition is coming up soon in early November, so be prepared to spend several evenings watching our nearest gas giant planet with a bunch of interesting features (it also does a complete rotation in only 10 hours) and moons (possibly home to some forms of alien life). Try to observe a moon shadow transit of Jupiter - they are fairly common, easy to see, and just a bit amazing to observe!

 

As for a mount, i would suggest looking for an affordable Alt- Az manual mount (with Slo-mo knobs) like the Celestron Heavy-Duty (actually only medium duty, but very useful to have) as an alternative/option to your more expensive heavy duty primary tripod. I found a nice used Alt-Az tripod locally for $50, and it holds several different kinds of scopes, and is really handy for Grab & Go situations,

Thank you, I will check out the local club.  Closest one seems to be located in Gainsville. 

 

wachuko,

 

Welcome to CN.

 

Congratulations on your purchase so far.   By all means, join an astronomy club, go to star parties, public or private.

 

Astronomy is putting the mount / tripod first.  Sturdy tripod, reliable mount.  Do your research on mounts, very carefully. There are a bunch of things that affect the mounts performance.  Weight, physical size of the OTA, focal length, wind. Imaging puts high demands on your mount, accuracy.  Think about this, but don't worry about it just yet.  You are just getting the basics down now.  Viewing, polar aligning, and pointing. Polar alignment and pointing work together but are two entirely separate things.  Your mount will need to be polar aligned, and be able to point correctly.  This is easy to do even with no camera.

 

Schmidt Cassegrain telescopes are dew catchers by nature.  If you do not have a dew shield, make one, very easy to make.

 

Imaging,  your C6 can do good on the Moon and planets.  Deep sky too, EAA style is what I would recommend first - Sharpcap live stack.

 

Viewing, what you will be doing first, it will take a while but you will have a good selection of eyepieces, a barlow and a lunar filter / neutral density filter for the Moon.  Don't have a lunar filter, use sun glasses.

 

Be careful, you can go broke quick on this stuff.

 

Good luck,   Joe

Yes, I quickly realized that the mount is the first thing to consider and critical to a good experience.  That is the main reason for the thread, to get feedback on those mounts I mentioned (or something else that might be more appropriate).  I did buy the dew shield based on several threads I read on the subject.

 

The C6 is around 10 lbs without anything else installed... I am looking for a mount that could handle around 40lbs.  So I have the ability to grow in equipment and still be within the weight limit.  To stay within the recommendation of having a mount that has 50% more capacity than the equipment weight.

 

Had to look up what EAA meant... Electronically-Assisted Astronomy (EAA).  Essentially a form of simple astrophotography, EAA involves capturing and stacking (or averaging) images from a camera to create a pleasing 'snapshot' in just a few seconds or minutes.  Got it.  I want to try visual observation via the eyepiece first... before I try astrophotography.  I will take a look at SharpCap when ready.  Thank you for the recommendation.

 

Trying to decide between (and I could use some feedback from those here in the forum).  Or another option that I might have not considered in the 40lbs capacity realm:

 

1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount

2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?

3. iOptron CEM40 Center Balance Equatorial Mount with iPolar, Hard Case and 1.75" LiteRoc Tripod

 

I do not have unlimited funds... really trying to stay around 2-3K-ish for the mount... 

 

 

Oh, and no kidding of how easy is to go broke with this hobby... goodness... That is why I am reading and looking to see what I should buy based on feedback and reading threads here.  I want to try to buy once and be done.  To avoid buying stuff that later I have to upgrade because I did not planned ahead...  I hope that makes sense.

 

Appreciate all the help provided so far.  Thank you all.


Edited by wachuko, 03 October 2023 - 11:23 AM.


#7 JohnBear

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Posted 03 October 2023 - 12:42 PM

Being willing to learn and gain Experience is the key to becoming a "good and capable astronomer".  Thus one of the best approaches to astronomy is to have Patience and simply Enjoy learning the basics of astronomy by starting a bit simple and modestly - and your C6 SCT sort of fits at the high end of that range.  Taking the time to learn "the basics" will quickly teach you what you need to know (while having a lot of FUN learning the essentials) to then invest wisely in the more expensive equipment you will really need in a more specialized ranch of astronomy.  

 

Many newbies try to 'Buy their way way around' the time needed to gain Experience by buying the  'advanced telescopes and excessories", when they do not even understand the very wide variety of required essentials for virtually every path taken in astronomy  - and the results are often costly, sad, and less that desirable. idea.gif

 

This is where joining a club and working with some experienced astronomers on actual equipment will pay off big time for you - in terms of Real equipment experience/knowledge and also in terms of actual cost savings on stuff you will really need and use.

 

Oh, and no kidding of how easy is to go broke with this hobby... goodness... That is why I am reading and looking to see what I should buy based on feedback and reading threads here.  I want to try to buy once and be done.  To avoid buying stuff that later I have to upgrade because I did not planned ahead...

 bangbang.gif     lol.gif rofl2.gif roflmao.gif

 

Thus, "Have patience, Grasshopper!" is a good mantra.

"Reading and looking" (and expensive equipment) only goes so far, and does not really make up for actual experience. So, being smart and learning with the simple essentials first will help a lot.  IMHO! 

 

You seem to be on the right path, so just be patient and Enjoy the learning journey.  It is usually way more fun, and less stressful, that way.


Edited by JohnBear, 03 October 2023 - 12:45 PM.

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#8 wachuko

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Posted 03 October 2023 - 01:11 PM

Being willing to learn and gain Experience is the key to becoming a "good and capable astronomer".  Thus one of the best approaches to astronomy is to have Patience and simply Enjoy learning the basics of astronomy by starting a bit simple and modestly - and your C6 SCT sort of fits at the high end of that range.  Taking the time to learn "the basics" will quickly teach you what you need to know (while having a lot of FUN learning the essentials) to then invest wisely in the more expensive equipment you will really need in a more specialized ranch of astronomy.  

 

Many newbies try to 'Buy their way way around' the time needed to gain Experience by buying the  'advanced telescopes and excessories", when they do not even understand the very wide variety of required essentials for virtually every path taken in astronomy  - and the results are often costly, sad, and less that desirable. idea.gif

 

This is where joining a club and working with some experienced astronomers on actual equipment will pay off big time for you - in terms of Real equipment experience/knowledge and also in terms of actual cost savings on stuff you will really need and use.

 

 bangbang.gif     lol.gif rofl2.gif roflmao.gif

 

Thus, "Have patience, Grasshopper!" is a good mantra.

"Reading and looking" (and expensive equipment) only goes so far, and does not really make up for actual experience. So, being smart and learning with the simple essentials first will help a lot.  IMHO! 

 

You seem to be on the right path, so just be patient and Enjoy the learning journey.  It is usually way more fun, and less stressful, that way.

You are killing me smalls!! lol.gif grin.gif lol.gif



#9 mrlovt

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Posted 03 October 2023 - 11:01 PM

Trying to decide between (and I could use some feedback from those here in the forum).  Or another option that I might have not considered in the 40lbs capacity realm:

 

1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount

2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?

3. iOptron CEM40 Center Balance Equatorial Mount with iPolar, Hard Case and 1.75" LiteRoc Tripod

 

I do not have unlimited funds... really trying to stay around 2-3K-ish for the mount... 

Take a look at the Losmandy series of mounts. A GM8 or GM811 would easily hold 40+ lbs for imaging, more for visual. If you have the option, go with their HD tripod. Sometimes you can find good examples used well under your budget.


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#10 Nicole Sharp

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:52 AM

Complete newbie... jumping all in... forgot to add, initial use for this equipment is for just looking at the sky via the eyepiece... later I want to play with cameras, but not now... not immediately.

 

What I have ordered so far (ordered last Friday and today):

 

1. Celestron C6-A SCT OTA (CEL-91010-XLT)
2. Apertura SCT Collimation Knobs (APT-CK-SCT) for making it easier to perform adjustments
3. Celestron f/6.3 Focal Reducer (CEL-94175)
4. Celestron T-Adapter (CEL-93633-A)
5. Celestron T-Ring for Nikon Camera Attachment (CEL-93402)
6. Celestron 6" Aluminum Dew Shield with Cap (CEL-94020)
7. Astro-Tech 2X Telecentric Extender Barlow for 1.25" eyepieces (AT2XTB)

 

Ordered these books as recommended reading from the forum:

 

1. The Backyard Astronomer's Guide
2. Observer's Sky Atlas: The 500 Best Deep-Sky Objects with Charts and Images

 

Here is where I need help... What mount to get.  This is a bit confusing with so many options available.  I want something that can hold more equipment in case I get really hooked and want to try a different (heavier) setup.  CEM vs Strain Wave mounts… not sure I get the difference on these… they are lighter for sure… A more traditional mount is less expensive but heavier…  Trying to decide between (and I could use some feedback from those here in the forum):


1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount


2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?


3. iOptron CEM40 Center Balance Equatorial Mount with iPolar, Hard Case and 1.75" LiteRoc Tripod

 

 

And, later looking at adding (not in any specific order):

 

1. Omegon Astro Observation Chair – not getting any younger, need to be comfortable watching through the eyepiece…
2. Celestron Ultima Edge - 10mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
3. Celestron Ultima Edge - 15mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
4. Celestron Ultima Edge - 24mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
5. Baader Planetarium T-2 Maxbright 1.25" Mirror Diagonal (BAD-MAX-1)
6. Baader Deluxe Short SCT T-Adapter (BAD-T2-21)
7. Baader Planetarium Clicklock 1.25"/T2 Eyepiece Holder (BAD-T2-08)
8. Baader 15 mm T-2 Extension Tube (BAD-T2-25A)
9. ZWO camera – just to play… so not sure which one, budget friendly, would be a good one to wet my feet with… I currently have a Nikon D200 and a D3200 that I can use for now
10. I will need something to control the camera… need to research this more when I am ready to use a ZWO camera…
11. Starizona HyperStar 6 v4 – because I am easily influenced… talk about an ignorant with initiative…
12. Celestron 6" Dew Heater Ring (CEL-94050) and I will need something to control it…

 

Pretty sure I am missing a lot of stuff... but for now I just want to get the basic stuff that will get me started with my OTA.  Reason for asking about the mount to go with.  

 

You forgot your Solar filter!!!!  A Solar filter for daytime should be the second accessory to get for a new optical tube after a dew shield for nighttime.  If you can't get a proper Solar filter in time for the upcoming Annular Solar Eclipse on October 14, you should at least try to get a sheet of Baader AstroSolar film and some gaffing tape.

 

Regarding mounts, you are going to be pushing the limits on something like a Sky-Watcher SolarQuest with a C6.  iOptron mounts can't be used for daytime astronomy so you need to get a Synta (Orion/Sky-Watcher/Celestron) mount instead for both daytime and nighttime use.  A Sky-Watcher EQ or AZ-EQ mount can be a good choice to pair up with a Solar autoguider for Solar observing.  Other than the Sky-Watcher SolarQuest, most Solar autoguiders need an equatorial alignment to work.


Edited by Nicole Sharp, 04 October 2023 - 04:53 AM.

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#11 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:56 AM

Take a look at the Losmandy series of mounts. A GM8 or GM811 would easily hold 40+ lbs for imaging, more for visual. If you have the option, go with their HD tripod. Sometimes you can find good examples used well under your budget.

That looks very well built…nice.  Looking at the GM811G

 

https://www.bhphotov...h.html/overview

 

http://losmandy.com/...G_datasheet.pdf


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#12 Nicole Sharp

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:58 AM

Complete newbie... jumping all in... forgot to add, initial use for this equipment is for just looking at the sky via the eyepiece... later I want to play with cameras, but not now... not immediately.

 

What I have ordered so far (ordered last Friday and today):

 

1. Celestron C6-A SCT OTA (CEL-91010-XLT)
2. Apertura SCT Collimation Knobs (APT-CK-SCT) for making it easier to perform adjustments
3. Celestron f/6.3 Focal Reducer (CEL-94175)
4. Celestron T-Adapter (CEL-93633-A)
5. Celestron T-Ring for Nikon Camera Attachment (CEL-93402)
6. Celestron 6" Aluminum Dew Shield with Cap (CEL-94020)
7. Astro-Tech 2X Telecentric Extender Barlow for 1.25" eyepieces (AT2XTB)

 

Ordered these books as recommended reading from the forum:

 

1. The Backyard Astronomer's Guide
2. Observer's Sky Atlas: The 500 Best Deep-Sky Objects with Charts and Images

 

Here is where I need help... What mount to get.  This is a bit confusing with so many options available.  I want something that can hold more equipment in case I get really hooked and want to try a different (heavier) setup.  CEM vs Strain Wave mounts… not sure I get the difference on these… they are lighter for sure… A more traditional mount is less expensive but heavier…  Trying to decide between (and I could use some feedback from those here in the forum):


1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount


2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?


3. iOptron CEM40 Center Balance Equatorial Mount with iPolar, Hard Case and 1.75" LiteRoc Tripod

 

 

And, later looking at adding (not in any specific order):

 

1. Omegon Astro Observation Chair – not getting any younger, need to be comfortable watching through the eyepiece…
2. Celestron Ultima Edge - 10mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
3. Celestron Ultima Edge - 15mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
4. Celestron Ultima Edge - 24mm Flat Field Eyepiece - 1.25"
5. Baader Planetarium T-2 Maxbright 1.25" Mirror Diagonal (BAD-MAX-1)
6. Baader Deluxe Short SCT T-Adapter (BAD-T2-21)
7. Baader Planetarium Clicklock 1.25"/T2 Eyepiece Holder (BAD-T2-08)
8. Baader 15 mm T-2 Extension Tube (BAD-T2-25A)
9. ZWO camera – just to play… so not sure which one, budget friendly, would be a good one to wet my feet with… I currently have a Nikon D200 and a D3200 that I can use for now
10. I will need something to control the camera… need to research this more when I am ready to use a ZWO camera…
11. Starizona HyperStar 6 v4 – because I am easily influenced… talk about an ignorant with initiative…
12. Celestron 6" Dew Heater Ring (CEL-94050) and I will need something to control it…

 

Pretty sure I am missing a lot of stuff... but for now I just want to get the basic stuff that will get me started with my OTA.  Reason for asking about the mount to go with.  

Good choice on the Barlow lens (focal extender).  I didn't even know that Astro-Tech made telecentric focal extenders.  Making sure that the Barlow lens is telecentric is important if you ever want to upgrade the C6 with something like a DayStar Quark for hydrogen-alpha Solar viewing.  You will need a telecentric 3X though to get the optical system up to about f/30.


Edited by Nicole Sharp, 04 October 2023 - 04:59 AM.

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#13 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:59 AM

You forgot your Solar filter!!!!  A Solar filter for daytime should be the second accessory to get for a new optical tube after a dew shield for nighttime.  If you can't get a proper Solar filter in time for the upcoming Annular Solar Eclipse on October 14, you should at least try to get a sheet of Baader AstroSolar film and some gaffing tape.

 

Regarding mounts, you are going to be pushing the limits on something like a Sky-Watcher SolarQuest with a C6.  iOptron mounts can't be used for daytime astronomy so you need to get a Synta (Orion/Sky-Watcher/Celestron) mount instead for both daytime and nighttime use.  A Sky-Watcher EQ or AZ-EQ mount can be a good choice to pair up with a Solar autoguider for Solar observing.  Other than the Sky-Watcher SolarQuest, most Solar autoguiders need an equatorial alignment to work.

Shows you how little I know.  Let me look at solar filters.  Thank you.



#14 Sacred Heart

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 05:41 AM

Shows you how little I know.  Let me look at solar filters.  Thank you.

Look,  No touch.  Talk about going broke fast.

 

As for mounts, I did not know some mounts could not be used for solar.  I can say that Losmandy does make a reliable mount.  Easy to do periodic maintenance to. Periodic maintenance is cleaning and regreasing the gears. You will hear Losmandy mounts are old school design, and they are correct. They are simple, reliable, dependable, accurate mounts.

 

Probably one of the biggest things against Losmandy mounts is no through the mount cabling. They are old school.  There are people here or on the Losmandy user groups that may show you how they route the cables, that's when you get into imaging.

 

Speaking of imaging, EAA / Electronic Assisted Astronomy,  I consider it the Polaroid of deep sky imaging. You see the picture develop before your eyes.  You can do this two ways, traditional - high gain short exposures or low gain long exposure as in deep sky imaging. Yes you will need to guide, use an off axis guider, but it will some what school you / prep you for deep sky imaging.  Again, cross this bridge later.

 

I believe it was Mr Loyt above that said, if you can get the FHD - heavy duty tripod.  By all means, it is rock solid, one piece, no tools to open / close or adjust height.

 

I owned a G11T, about three years ago I bought a G11T, had it for a year then realized I did not want to push a C14 around on it. Too heavy of a set up, I'm old and retired.  Getting to like refractors now.  Anyway, the C14 OTA is now at the middle school and the G11T is at my neighbors house. My neighbor has had it for two years now, replaced his CGX mount.

 

My only beef with the Gemini 2 control system is the hand control box is small and the numbers are right next to the letters making entering the object a little hard.  I used my finger nail.

 

No matter what mount you decide on, if it takes those little CR batteries, change them about every year or so,  that can drive you crazy.

 

Good luck,   Joe


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#15 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 07:38 AM

Look,  No touch.  Talk about going broke fast.

 

As for mounts, I did not know some mounts could not be used for solar.  I can say that Losmandy does make a reliable mount.  Easy to do periodic maintenance to. Periodic maintenance is cleaning and regreasing the gears. You will hear Losmandy mounts are old school design, and they are correct. They are simple, reliable, dependable, accurate mounts.

 

Probably one of the biggest things against Losmandy mounts is no through the mount cabling. They are old school.  There are people here or on the Losmandy user groups that may show you how they route the cables, that's when you get into imaging.

 

Speaking of imaging, EAA / Electronic Assisted Astronomy,  I consider it the Polaroid of deep sky imaging. You see the picture develop before your eyes.  You can do this two ways, traditional - high gain short exposures or low gain long exposure as in deep sky imaging. Yes you will need to guide, use an off axis guider, but it will some what school you / prep you for deep sky imaging.  Again, cross this bridge later.

 

I believe it was Mr Loyt above that said, if you can get the FHD - heavy duty tripod.  By all means, it is rock solid, one piece, no tools to open / close or adjust height.

 

I owned a G11T, about three years ago I bought a G11T, had it for a year then realized I did not want to push a C14 around on it. Too heavy of a set up, I'm old and retired.  Getting to like refractors now.  Anyway, the C14 OTA is now at the middle school and the G11T is at my neighbors house. My neighbor has had it for two years now, replaced his CGX mount.

 

My only beef with the Gemini 2 control system is the hand control box is small and the numbers are right next to the letters making entering the object a little hard.  I used my finger nail.

 

No matter what mount you decide on, if it takes those little CR batteries, change them about every year or so,  that can drive you crazy.

 

Good luck,   Joe

 

Thank you Joe.  I too did not realize that some mounts could not be used for Solar... that sounds so strange.  I thought that any equatorial mount would work with solar observing.  I obviously need to read and learn more about the mounts I am looking at.. must be software related... 

 

I went ahead and ordered the solar filter.  Should be here around Oct 11.

 

I still need to get a mount.  JohnBear's suggestion of just getting a manual mount while I learn and decide, is sounding better by the minute... I just did not wanted to spend on a mount that would later just sit in the corner of the garage... My thought was that it was money that could go towards the actual mount that I want.  But with something happening as close as Oct 14... I need something to place the OTA on if I want to see that... Or just miss it and wait until I decide on the mount... 

 

 

5668_annular_eclipse_2023_path_of_totali



#16 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 07:51 AM

Good choice on the Barlow lens (focal extender).  I didn't even know that Astro-Tech made telecentric focal extenders.  Making sure that the Barlow lens is telecentric is important if you ever want to upgrade the C6 with something like a DayStar Quark for hydrogen-alpha Solar viewing.  You will need a telecentric 3X though to get the optical system up to about f/30.

I just googled the DayStar Quark... that is one expensive accessory... I will stick with night observing for now lol.gif .  But added to my bookmarks. 

 

Also watched a few videos on it... pretty cool... I mean, hot...waytogo.gif

 

https://youtu.be/8Nc...ew4mbHU9wSItAXI

 

Focus Wachuko, focus!  Mount first... 



#17 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 09:36 AM

Okay,

 

So looking at the following now:

 

1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount - least expensive of the three and in stock everywhere.  Heavier than the other options as well.

2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar - this one has a 2-4 weeks wait time

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?

3. Losmandy GM811GHD Equatorial GoTo Mount with FHD-MA Tripod - this one has a 4-6 weeks wait time.  

 

EDIT:  I did search for manual mounts... but something that would hold 20-30 lbs is in the US$3-500.00 range... It pains me to spend that much on a temporary/interim mount...  And I did look locally for use mounts, nothing available with these specs at this time... manual or goto.  Would be great to find an AVX mount for little money to hold me while I get one of the three above...   I check everyday for mounts, lol... 


Edited by wachuko, 04 October 2023 - 10:14 AM.


#18 Nicole Sharp

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 12:07 PM

Okay,

 

So looking at the following now:

 

1. Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro Computerized Equatorial Mount - least expensive of the three and in stock everywhere.  Heavier than the other options as well.

2. iOptron HAE43 Dual AZ/EQ SWG Mount w/ iPolar - this one has a 2-4 weeks wait time

a. If I go with this one, do I get the iOptron Carbon Fiber tripod or the INNOREL RT90C Carbon Fiber tripod?

3. Losmandy GM811GHD Equatorial GoTo Mount with FHD-MA Tripod - this one has a 4-6 weeks wait time.  

 

EDIT:  I did search for manual mounts... but something that would hold 20-30 lbs is in the US$3-500.00 range... It pains me to spend that much on a temporary/interim mount...  And I did look locally for use mounts, nothing available with these specs at this time... manual or goto.  Would be great to find an AVX mount for little money to hold me while I get one of the three above...   I check everyday for mounts, lol... 

It is going to be a lot easier to set up the mount in the daytime using an altazimuth alignment.  Either the Sky-Watcher AZ-EQ5 (Orion Sirius Pro) or Sky-Watcher AZ-EQ6 (Orion Atlas Pro) are likely superior alternatives to the Sky-Watcher EQ6 (Orion Atlas).


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#19 t-ara-fan

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 12:33 PM

iOptron mounts can't be used for daytime astronomy


Kindly explain why not?
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#20 Nicole Sharp

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 01:02 PM

Kindly explain why not?

I will never buy an iOptron product again.  I was lied to by iOptron.  They communicated to me in writing that their mounts support daytime alignment but this is not true.  I ended up purchasing the iOptron CubePro but had to pay return shipping because it was considered not defective despite the fact that I was lied to regarding the mount's capabilities.

 

Only mounts with NexStar or SynScan (from Orion, Sky-Watcher, or Celestron) support daytime alignment.  Daytime GOTO alignment is different from Solar tracking.  Most mounts will do Solar tracking, including iOptron, but mounts from iOptron, Meade, Explore Scientific, etcetera, have no support for daytime GOTO since they cannot use the Sun or the Moon as GOTO alignment objects (these are the only two naked-eye objects visible in the daytime that you can align on).

 

In order to see the Lunar Occultation of Venus on April 7 (the day before the Total Solar Eclipse on April 8), you must have a Synta GOTO mount with either NexStar or SynScan to be able to align on the Sun and then GOTO Venus.

 

I don't know anything about Losmandy mounts but you can try to find a user manual to see if it supports daytime use.


Edited by Nicole Sharp, 04 October 2023 - 01:07 PM.


#21 JohnBear

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 02:39 PM

Speak of the devil! There are a a couple reasonable priced manual mounts (for lighter scopes) in the CN Classifeds today:  https://www.cloudyni...mallish-scopes/   

 Something you my want to consider. And they should be useful for viewing the eclipse (where you won't need a big scope for high magnification). 



#22 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:21 PM

Speak of the devil! There are a a couple reasonable priced manual mounts (for lighter scopes) in the CN Classifeds today:  https://www.cloudyni...mallish-scopes/   

 Something you my want to consider. And they should be useful for viewing the eclipse (where you won't need a big scope for high magnification). 

Let me get this correctly... I still do not have a mount for my C6 and you are suggesting that I buy another scope with a mount? lol.gif lol.gif



#23 Nicole Sharp

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 04:32 PM

Let me get this correctly... I still do not have a mount for my C6 and you are suggesting that I buy another scope with a mount? lol.gif lol.gif

A GOTO mount is a big decision that you should take your time with and do your research for.

 

Right now you just need something for the Annular Solar Eclipse on October 14.  You may want to just get a manual mount for now.  It took me many years to decide what GOTO mount was best for me, and I ended up having to purchase and then return three different GOTO mounts until I found the one that was perfect for my particular needs.  Getting a manual mount is an easier decision.  I would recommend something like an Explore Scientific Exos Nano.  That has a 15-pound payload capacity and you can track the Sun manually or with a clockdrive.  Even if you later buy another EQ mount with FreedomFind for manual use, the Exos Nano weighs a lot less to carry around so you may still want it for portable quick setups.

 

https://www.explores...-exosnanot1-00/


Edited by Nicole Sharp, 04 October 2023 - 04:55 PM.

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#24 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 08:11 PM

Thanks. Getting an inexpensive one for now. Just to get started.

Will revisit this after a few months.
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#25 wachuko

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Posted 04 October 2023 - 09:09 PM

Speak of the devil! There are a a couple reasonable priced manual mounts (for lighter scopes) in the CN Classifeds today:  https://www.cloudyni...mallish-scopes/   

 Something you my want to consider. And they should be useful for viewing the eclipse (where you won't need a big scope for high magnification). 

 


 

A GOTO mount is a big decision that you should take your time with and do your research for.

 

Right now you just need something for the Annular Solar Eclipse on October 14.  You may want to just get a manual mount for now.  It took me many years to decide what GOTO mount was best for me, and I ended up having to purchase and then return three different GOTO mounts until I found the one that was perfect for my particular needs.  Getting a manual mount is an easier decision.  I would recommend something like an Explore Scientific Exos Nano.  That has a 15-pound payload capacity and you can track the Sun manually or with a clockdrive.  Even if you later buy another EQ mount with FreedomFind for manual use, the Exos Nano weighs a lot less to carry around so you may still want it for portable quick setups.

 

https://www.explores...-exosnanot1-00/

 

Well... almost pulled the trigger on that Explore FirstLight EXOS Nano Mount EQ3 - FL-EXOSNANOT1-00... 140.00 was perfect...   But kind of got carried away when I started looking at the rest of the line up... and then came across this thread here in the forum:

 

https://www.cloudyni...-pmc-eight-399/

 

Then I went to see what that one went for...  the Explore Scientific iEXOS Equatorial GoTo Mount is being sold for 299.99.  It has been discontinued, so guessing they are getting rid of all inventory.  So why not!???  Ordered!  

Attached Thumbnails

  • exs-fl-80640-iexos-7_1_1.jpg

Edited by wachuko, 04 October 2023 - 09:10 PM.

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