Did the design of the 900GTO or SPA change at some point, so the RPA is not essential?

Chris White

At the beginning of the year I purchased a 2009 900GTO.  It came with the standard pier adapter, which I mounted everything on a Losmandy HD tripod with the AP FSA bolted right to the top.  I had multiple people tell me that adjusting azimuth was a bit of a pain with the SPA so I kept my eyes open for the rotating pier adapter.  I bought one when it popped up on the classifieds, but to be honest I havent felt any need to install it.  Adjusting azimuth with the SPA is buttery smooth and precise.  Am I missing out by not using the RPA?  Did something change at some point with the SPA or the 900 that improved adjustment?

I do have incentive to not use the RPA as it adds almost an inch to the height of my setup.  I have my mount in a very small back yard observatory that I built and while the extra height wont be a problem in position 5 for the refractor it cuts it close for the Edge scope I have when I close the roof.

And as any of you who have an observatory will attest... they make us even more LAZY as astronomers so breaking apart the setup to run a test sounds like work especially when everything is just sitting there ready to go on a moments notice! 


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