Re: Safely installing a heavy OTA onto an AP900


Mal Speer <mal@...>
 

AP and Cassidy both make newer upgraded saddles with a much better
locking system using two large knobs. The reason for only a dovetail
on one side is that that is a tip in saddle. You don't have to slide
a heavy scope in from the end, just tip the scope into the dovetail
drop it down and lock it in.
Mal


--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Joseph Zeglinski" <J.Zeglinski@...>
wrote:

Hi,

I recently received my AP900 and had a look at the DOVEM2
dovetail plate
for my existing Losmandy DSUB adapter on a 25 lb. Questar-7 OTA.

The AP dovetail doesn't quite mate the same way. The Losmandy
has two
closely fitted V-grooves, into which the OTA's DSUB just slides
down, and is
locked in place with one knob. The AP900 DOVEM2 has only one V-
groove, and a
much wider, by about 3/16" channel, with a straight, non-grooved
wall on the
other side - the two lock knobs act as both the other "channel" and
the locks,
for the DSUB plate.

My "queasiness" is handling the heavy MAK OTA to get it locked
safely into
the groove. I guess I would have felt safer if the plate was
initially mated
"in both notched channels" as on the Losmandy mount. However, the
DOVEM2 is
very well designed for a variety of OTA plates, and even balance
point
offsets.

So, how do you owners of C9 and similar OTA's used with
Losmandy mounts,
do the attachment now on your AP mounts?

Assuming, of course, the mount is positioned and locked in the CWD
(counter
weights down) position:

1.. Do you preset the DOVEM2 knobs so they are very close to the
width of
the DSUB, and similarly slide the OTA down the channel vertically
(as on a
G11, for example), before lock in? Or ...

2.. Do you set the DOVEM2 knobs wide open, and "clip in" the OTA
with DSUB
sideways, then tighten the knobs?

Which approach is safer, while precariously standing on snow?

The latter approach seems a bit more hazardous than doing the
longitudinal
vertical OTA slide. It's just that using the two DOVEM2 bolt tips
as a
substitute V-groove slide, seems prone to jamming the DSUB plate on
the way
down.

It sure would be nice if at least, some of the AP documentation
showed
"hefty OTA's" actually being installed, on portable mounts, instead
of the
lighter refractors, or the large OTA's already pictured in
observatories.
But I suppose those are AP refractors. Perhaps AP could show some
shots of how
to "handle" their AP MAK in this situation - that would be
instructive for us
who already have an investment in good SCT's and MAK's, and just
want to
safely use our AP mounts, while perhaps avoiding wrenching our
backs in the
exercise.

Opinions please.
Joe


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