Date   

Re: TEC 140 + 14" LX200R on an AP1200

William R. Mattil <wrmattil@...>
 

Gavin Bray wrote:
Hello

I have a 14" LX200R attached to an AP1200 using a set of Parallax Instruments rings. The setup is housed in my observatory and I'm very happy with it.

I was wondering whether I could attach a dovetail plate to the top of the parallax rings (above the 14") and attach something like a TEC 140 to that.

Is it feasible to mount something like a TEC 140 on top of the 14"?
It is certainly feasible. Many others have done exactly that and it's doubtful that you'd be getting anywhere near the capacity of your AP1200.


Just don't be too surprised if you cannot guide the LX200R with the TEC140.

Is there a better option I should be considering?

I'm sure somebody will suggest a side by side mounting which is also feasible. But IMO it's harder to deal with.

Regards

Bill

--

William R. Mattil : http://www.celestial-images.com


Re: Mach1 critique in S&T Dec 2007

Kent Kirkley
 

In a message dated 11/1/2007 11:44:35 AM Central Daylight Time,
J.Zeglinski@... writes:

Back to topic - I am surprised that S&T didn't scoop the astro publishing
world with such a major announcement review (prepared in advanced) of the
AP3600 - somebody there, in the new management, asleep at the wheel - (they
probably aren't astro literate) ?
They could have sent Dennis DiCicco to Antarctica to test it, and he would
have been back ... by morning :-)



Dennis was at AIC2006 in San Jose last weekend, taking photographs of all
the new gear, including the AP3600GTO.

Kent Kirkley



************************************** See what's new at http://www.aol.com


Re: Mach1 critique in S&T Dec 2007

Dr. David Toth
 

At 02:52 AM 11/1/2007, Gerald Sargent wrote:
The Nov issue of S&T has just arrived and the "next month's contents"
does not mention it. Likewise the contents list for the Dec issue of
Sky &Telescope, vol 114, No 6 on the "www.skypub.com" website
does not mention the Mach 1.
What have I got wrong please ? Gerald
The Mach 1 is reviewed in New Products in the Dec. issue, page 37, entitled "Staying on Track" ...
A good read ....

Dave


TEC 140 + 14" LX200R on an AP1200

Gavin Bray
 

Hello

I have a 14" LX200R attached to an AP1200 using a set of Parallax
Instruments rings. The setup is housed in my observatory and I'm very
happy with it.

I was wondering whether I could attach a dovetail plate to the top of
the parallax rings (above the 14") and attach something like a TEC 140
to that.

Is it feasible to mount something like a TEC 140 on top of the 14"?

Is there a better option I should be considering?

Thanks
Gavin


Re: Mach1 critique in S&T Dec 2007 OT

Kent Kirkley
 

In a message dated 11/1/2007 9:59:36 AM Central Daylight Time,
J.Zeglinski@... writes:

Does any other monthly magazine publish months in advance?
For me, it's more annoying than supposedly well intentioned.

Joe



More annoying to me is that the magazines begin sending out resubscription
notices a few months after your subscription begins or at least 6-10 months
before it expires.
By not sending out these early notices they could save a lot of money, not c
log landfill and, perhaps lower the subscription rate.

Remember when magazines cost 50 cents, a dollar, two dollars?
(I know that can be said just about anything)

Kent Kirkley



************************************** See what's new at http://www.aol.com


Mach1 critique in S&T Dec 2007

Gerald Sargent <sargentg@...>
 

The Nov issue of S&T has just arrived and the "next month's contents"
does not mention it. Likewise the contents list for the Dec issue of
Sky &Telescope, vol 114, No 6 on the "www.skypub.com" website
does not mention the Mach 1.
What have I got wrong please ? Gerald


Re: portable pier height for 1200GTO

tomoharra <toharra@...>
 

--- In ap-gto@..., "Dean S" <dean@...> wrote:
Hi Dean,

I have the 48" port. pier that I use when I go to my ranch. My
imaging scope is either my TOA 130 or the FSQ. Check out my web
site.

www.astrodave.com/oharra

Tom O'Harra

Hi All,

While waiting for my new mount to get finished, I am thinking
about the portable pier height. Currently mine is about 38" and the
1200 mount is 2" taller, so if I had a 36" tall AP pier it would be
what I am comfortable with. My observatory pier is this height also.

I will use this at star parties, and don't want to get too low as
passer bys inevitably get too close and seem to want to look down
the scopes, or worse yet shine a light on it while I am imaging:)
My OTA's are currently a C9.25, guide scope, and Epsilon 160, not
sure if I ever will get a big refractor.

So this is why I am a bit concerned with the 32" pier. I do think
the 42" is way too tall for my vertically challenged stature. Ap
said they would consider making me a custom pier tube during their
next run, but of course this also means changing the turn buckles
too or else I would just cut one down myself.

Anyways, I like to hear some opinions and experiences with similar
setups and your pier height considerations.

Thanks,
Dean


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: Pier design and sand

dmwmpd <westergren@...>
 

Hi Joe,

I come from the school of thought in astrophotography that there is
no substitude for stiffness, like in auto racing there's no
substitute for cubic inches. A lot of ideas for astro mounts,
cameras, etc can work, but some of them take special care. We are
fortunate now that DSLR's don't need the long term precision guiding
that film required in order to get nice astro photos. I used to
guide film with a piggy back scope that I thought was a very stiff
mount, yet the change in gravity direction in 45 minutes of tracking
caused elongated stars due to the deflection of the structure. Any
imbalance of the scope/mount, or change in the direction of hanging
cables can cause elongated stars over longer exposure times.

Good luck if you decide to try the PVC pier. It's certainly cheaper
and much easier to handle and install than a steel pier. I know, my
steel pier weighed over 450 lbs and took a lot of planning and
manpower to get it into position. It's never going to move now. Let
us know what you try, and how well it works.

Regards,
Don

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

Hi Don,

My engineering background reminds me of these pitfalls as well,
and it is
a concern at the back of my mind, but I still wonder how much
stiffness in
this application, is really enough. If I were building
an "observatory pier",
fully committed to location, I would go for maximum strength of
materials, but
this pier is a test system, if I can call it that. If it works
sufficiently
well, (and I don't kick it, intentionally out of frustration, or
unintentionally), then I will consider it a viable success. Since
this is my
backyard, I don't expect blustery winds (certainly not if I have to
be
outside - in which case the seeing will be a deciding factor, not
the pier).
There are enough buildings, shrubs, fences, and low trees, etc. to
provide
some wind break. Heaving of the ground from year to year, might
eventually
require a reset, or redesign with heftier materials, but a 4 foot
depth and
packed with yard soil (not necessarily sand). I don't expect much
long term
motion, especially since there is no "footing" to push up - it's
just a
relatively thin 1/2" cylinder wall rather than a flat bottom. As
for short
term stability, I am trusting that the wall thickness will suffice
for the
load being carried. But by then I will know if this is the best
spot -
certainly can't be worse than using my 6" diameter Losmandy G11
aluminum
tripod supporting my AP900 and Questar-7. If there is any shift
caused by
seasonal heaving, I can realign the mount, but hopefully it won't
be required,
or at least not often. I like the clean lines of green PVC, no
painting
required, no pitting or rusting below ground, and it won't ring
like a bell.

As for pulling cables, or unbalance - if cables are pulled, I
have some
serious soldering repairs ahead of me. The mount should be
perfectly
balanced - after all it's one of the best, and if anything, we like
our setups
perfectly balanced.

I'm still investigating the feasibility, but appreciate any
heads up and
warnings I can get from you and others. For now, I am considering
it a
"temporary pier" - with no early plans to require dismantling it
(once
planted). I had hoped someone had already tried this approach, but
I might
have to be the first to do so.

What I really would like is to turn it into a Greek Column
during the day,
as I described - that WOULD be the topper!

Thanks,
Joe



----- Original Message -----
From: "dmwmpd" <westergren@...>
To: <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2007 8:51 PM
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Pier design and sand


Hi Joe,

I really don't think PVC pipe buried in the soil is going to be a
very good pier. The ringing that you mention is a high frequency
tone, that the PVC pipe wouldn't have compared to a metal (steel)
pipe. But the real concern for pier design is how stiff it is
against bumping (not hitting), wind, weight shift (as the mount
moves with any unbalance), pulling cables, etc. These are all
long
time effects, like many seconds to hours. The stiffness of the
pier
pipe is a function of E (modulus of elasticity of the material)
and
the Section Moment of Inertia (depends on diameter and wall
thickness. The stiffness is E*I. It then determines how much
delction of a canteleverd pier has at the top, when one or more of
the steady forces or moments I mentioneed above are applied.

The modulus for steel is 30 million. The modulus for PVC is
between
380,000 and 540,000. In other words, the PVC pipe would flex more
than 55 times as far compared to the the same size steel pipe.

The paper on pier design by Dennis Persyk mentioned a few days ago
on this forum is a very good guide to best pier design, although
it
doesn't address the dynamics that I mentioned in my posts.

Regards,
Don

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

Hi,

I have been thinking about putting a temporary pier in the
ground, to see
how the back yard observing spot works out. I don't want to
commit
to heavy
steel posts and concrete bunker footing.

I was thinking of using one of those very thick walled, 10"
diameter,
street water main/sanitation pipes, and simply bury it 3 or 4
feet
deep (3
feet above ground), and fill the inside back in with earth
(perhaps only to
ground level). I am hoping that the perhaps 1/2", (or thicker),
PVC walls
won't ring as much as steel, and will be solid enough for an
AP900
system. I
think these street pipes should be temperature stable and should
not warp or
vibrate, in normal city street use, so it might have advantages
as
pier
material. Advantages include being easier to construct, (even
remove to adjust
for height), and can eventually be moved to a better spot, or
removed
entirely.

Opinions please.

Joe



To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list
see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto
Yahoo! Groups Links




Re: Pier design and sand

Joe Zeglinski
 

Hi Don,

My engineering background reminds me of these pitfalls as well, and it is
a concern at the back of my mind, but I still wonder how much stiffness in
this application, is really enough. If I were building an "observatory pier",
fully committed to location, I would go for maximum strength of materials, but
this pier is a test system, if I can call it that. If it works sufficiently
well, (and I don't kick it, intentionally out of frustration, or
unintentionally), then I will consider it a viable success. Since this is my
backyard, I don't expect blustery winds (certainly not if I have to be
outside - in which case the seeing will be a deciding factor, not the pier).
There are enough buildings, shrubs, fences, and low trees, etc. to provide
some wind break. Heaving of the ground from year to year, might eventually
require a reset, or redesign with heftier materials, but a 4 foot depth and
packed with yard soil (not necessarily sand). I don't expect much long term
motion, especially since there is no "footing" to push up - it's just a
relatively thin 1/2" cylinder wall rather than a flat bottom. As for short
term stability, I am trusting that the wall thickness will suffice for the
load being carried. But by then I will know if this is the best spot -
certainly can't be worse than using my 6" diameter Losmandy G11 aluminum
tripod supporting my AP900 and Questar-7. If there is any shift caused by
seasonal heaving, I can realign the mount, but hopefully it won't be required,
or at least not often. I like the clean lines of green PVC, no painting
required, no pitting or rusting below ground, and it won't ring like a bell.

As for pulling cables, or unbalance - if cables are pulled, I have some
serious soldering repairs ahead of me. The mount should be perfectly
balanced - after all it's one of the best, and if anything, we like our setups
perfectly balanced.

I'm still investigating the feasibility, but appreciate any heads up and
warnings I can get from you and others. For now, I am considering it a
"temporary pier" - with no early plans to require dismantling it (once
planted). I had hoped someone had already tried this approach, but I might
have to be the first to do so.

What I really would like is to turn it into a Greek Column during the day,
as I described - that WOULD be the topper!

Thanks,
Joe

----- Original Message -----
From: "dmwmpd" <westergren@...>
To: <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2007 8:51 PM
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Pier design and sand


Hi Joe,

I really don't think PVC pipe buried in the soil is going to be a
very good pier. The ringing that you mention is a high frequency
tone, that the PVC pipe wouldn't have compared to a metal (steel)
pipe. But the real concern for pier design is how stiff it is
against bumping (not hitting), wind, weight shift (as the mount
moves with any unbalance), pulling cables, etc. These are all long
time effects, like many seconds to hours. The stiffness of the pier
pipe is a function of E (modulus of elasticity of the material) and
the Section Moment of Inertia (depends on diameter and wall
thickness. The stiffness is E*I. It then determines how much
delction of a canteleverd pier has at the top, when one or more of
the steady forces or moments I mentioneed above are applied.

The modulus for steel is 30 million. The modulus for PVC is between
380,000 and 540,000. In other words, the PVC pipe would flex more
than 55 times as far compared to the the same size steel pipe.

The paper on pier design by Dennis Persyk mentioned a few days ago
on this forum is a very good guide to best pier design, although it
doesn't address the dynamics that I mentioned in my posts.

Regards,
Don

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

Hi,

I have been thinking about putting a temporary pier in the
ground, to see
how the back yard observing spot works out. I don't want to commit
to heavy
steel posts and concrete bunker footing.

I was thinking of using one of those very thick walled, 10"
diameter,
street water main/sanitation pipes, and simply bury it 3 or 4 feet
deep (3
feet above ground), and fill the inside back in with earth
(perhaps only to
ground level). I am hoping that the perhaps 1/2", (or thicker),
PVC walls
won't ring as much as steel, and will be solid enough for an AP900
system. I
think these street pipes should be temperature stable and should
not warp or
vibrate, in normal city street use, so it might have advantages as
pier
material. Advantages include being easier to construct, (even
remove to adjust
for height), and can eventually be moved to a better spot, or
removed
entirely.

Opinions please.

Joe



To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list
see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto
Yahoo! Groups Links




Re: Pier design and sand

dmwmpd <westergren@...>
 

Hi Joe,

I really don't think PVC pipe buried in the soil is going to be a
very good pier. The ringing that you mention is a high frequency
tone, that the PVC pipe wouldn't have compared to a metal (steel)
pipe. But the real concern for pier design is how stiff it is
against bumping (not hitting), wind, weight shift (as the mount
moves with any unbalance), pulling cables, etc. These are all long
time effects, like many seconds to hours. The stiffness of the pier
pipe is a function of E (modulus of elasticity of the material) and
the Section Moment of Inertia (depends on diameter and wall
thickness. The stiffness is E*I. It then determines how much
delction of a canteleverd pier has at the top, when one or more of
the steady forces or moments I mentioneed above are applied.

The modulus for steel is 30 million. The modulus for PVC is between
380,000 and 540,000. In other words, the PVC pipe would flex more
than 55 times as far compared to the the same size steel pipe.

The paper on pier design by Dennis Persyk mentioned a few days ago
on this forum is a very good guide to best pier design, although it
doesn't address the dynamics that I mentioned in my posts.

Regards,
Don

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

Hi,

I have been thinking about putting a temporary pier in the
ground, to see
how the back yard observing spot works out. I don't want to commit
to heavy
steel posts and concrete bunker footing.

I was thinking of using one of those very thick walled, 10"
diameter,
street water main/sanitation pipes, and simply bury it 3 or 4 feet
deep (3
feet above ground), and fill the inside back in with earth
(perhaps only to
ground level). I am hoping that the perhaps 1/2", (or thicker),
PVC walls
won't ring as much as steel, and will be solid enough for an AP900
system. I
think these street pipes should be temperature stable and should
not warp or
vibrate, in normal city street use, so it might have advantages as
pier
material. Advantages include being easier to construct, (even
remove to adjust
for height), and can eventually be moved to a better spot, or
removed
entirely.

Opinions please.

Joe


portable pier height for 1200GTO

Dean S
 

Hi All,

While waiting for my new mount to get finished, I am thinking about the portable pier height. Currently mine is about 38" and the 1200 mount is 2" taller, so if I had a 36" tall AP pier it would be what I am comfortable with. My observatory pier is this height also.

I will use this at star parties, and don't want to get too low as passer bys inevitably get too close and seem to want to look down the scopes, or worse yet shine a light on it while I am imaging:) My OTA's are currently a C9.25, guide scope, and Epsilon 160, not sure if I ever will get a big refractor.

So this is why I am a bit concerned with the 32" pier. I do think the 42" is way too tall for my vertically challenged stature. Ap said they would consider making me a custom pier tube during their next run, but of course this also means changing the turn buckles too or else I would just cut one down myself.

Anyways, I like to hear some opinions and experiences with similar setups and your pier height considerations.

Thanks,
Dean


Re: Pier design and sand

Joe Zeglinski
 

Hi,

The other benefit, I was considering, is that it can be sawn to length,
with some work. However, you can do a deal with a contractor doing road work,
and he will cut one evenly, to your requirements, using his machinery - you
might even get the pipe cheaper than from the dealer (who might not want to
sell you just one). I think they are standard 10 foot long, too much to bury.
You can also decide if you want the bell-swaged wider end up, for an inlaid
(wooden ?) plug/mounting-plate/pier vibration reducer - or swaged end down, to
have a slightly wider footing 4 feet down.

Joe

----- Original Message -----
From: "Murray Hammick" <mphammick@...>
To: <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2007 5:29 PM
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Pier design and sand


The bending can be captured using strain guages (gages for US speakers)

Would anyone be prepared to give all of this a go ?

I liked the idea of the 10" concrete drain pipe - I cannot see that bending
very much. Its a quicker and possibly cheaper alternative to constructing a
reinforced concrete pillar.

MPH

"N. Foldager" <nf@...> wrote: > If
the Petrie dish has value, then it is far simpler to attach a mic to
the side of a pier, and plug the mic output into your laptop audio port.
I question the "Petri method" as I don't think it for sure can
discriminate between the bell like oscillations (which we don't care
about) and the bending oscillations. (Or can it? The frequency of
latter should be much lower.) I believe that a microphone attached to
the pier will only record the "sound of the bell", not the bending of
the pier.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager









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Re: Wood Tripod Vs. Eagle Pier for Mach1GTO?

Steven Hum <s.hum@...>
 

I went with a portable pier from Particle Wave Technologies for my Mach1GTO/TEC-140
combo, the Monolith LT with 12" extension. The LT heritage from the flagship Monolith pier
is unmistakable, as is the finish and quality. It is rock solid even with the extension.

http://www.pwtec.com/index.htm

Shahin, the engineer, (contact link on web site for info) will answer any questions you may
have regarding the configuration that will best meet your needs.

S


Re: Pier design and sand

Woodwind
 

The bending can be captured using strain guages (gages for US speakers)

Would anyone be prepared to give all of this a go ?

I liked the idea of the 10" concrete drain pipe - I cannot see that bending very much. Its a quicker and possibly cheaper alternative to constructing a reinforced concrete pillar.

MPH

"N. Foldager" <nf@...> wrote: > If the Petrie dish has value, then it is far simpler to attach a mic to
> the side of a pier, and plug the mic output into your laptop audio port.

I question the "Petri method" as I don't think it for sure can
discriminate between the bell like oscillations (which we don't care
about) and the bending oscillations. (Or can it? The frequency of
latter should be much lower.) I believe that a microphone attached to
the pier will only record the "sound of the bell", not the bending of
the pier.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager


Re: Pier design and sand

masterson_harold <hfm5022@...>
 

You are trying to measure the motion of the pier. Use an
accelerometer, not a microphone.

--- In ap-gto@..., "N. Foldager" <nf@...> wrote:

If the Petrie dish has value, then it is far simpler to attach
a mic to
the side of a pier, and plug the mic output into your laptop audio
port.

I question the "Petri method" as I don't think it for sure can
discriminate between the bell like oscillations (which we don't care
about) and the bending oscillations. (Or can it? The frequency of
latter should be much lower.) I believe that a microphone attached to
the pier will only record the "sound of the bell", not the bending of
the pier.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager


GTO Keypad Firmware

Larry Phillips
 

Can anyone tell me if version 4.12 of the GTO Keypad firmware is still
shipping with the current Mach1GTO mount or has there been an update
released?

I read somewhere that it is to be updated soon. If so, when will
Mach1GTO mounts have the updated firmware included when shipped?

Also, will the next update of the firmware require changes to the
manual?

Larry


Re: Power Supply for Mach1GTo

Larry Phillips
 

Todd,
See my answer on the ap-ug site.

Larry

--- In ap-gto@..., "teche70" <teche70@...> wrote:

Larry,

What are you putting you mount on? What tripod?

Todd


--- In ap-gto@..., "Larry Phillips" <llp41astro@>
wrote:

I am new to owning an AP mount and expect to have one soon. In
preparation for that, are there any recommendations for a DC
power
supply that is appropriate for the Mach1? That is, 11.5 to 16
volts DC
filters and regulated with 110 V AC input? I have an 18 V power
supply
now that I have been using with a Gemini system but this appears
to
be
too high a voltage.

Larry


Re: Wood Tripod Vs. Eagle Pier for Mach1GTO?

teche70
 

I'll be listening closely to this one as my Mach1 mount will be
delivered shortly too. I just dont have the scope or camera you have
so I may opt for the aluminum tripod.
Todd

--- In ap-gto@..., "dave_snope" <dlsnope@...> wrote:

I'm trying to decide what is the best solution for portable imaging
with my upcoming Mach1GTO mount.

My primary imaging scope is an SV 130 F/6 refractor with STL11K. The
imaging train gets rather long with the large field flattener and STL
body, and I get more hits to the scope legs of my current Atlas mount
than I would like. I have an 8" pier extension for my mount which
helps a little but it's too wobbly. This got me thinking portable pier
to provide more "leg room", but in looking at the Eagle pictures it's
got legs too and is kinda short and I'm not convinced that it will be
much different in leg clearance than a tripod, in which case I'll look
at the wood tripod. Any thoughts on this subject from the group?

I do like the look of the wooden tripod. Are there any opinions on how
the AP wood tripod performs as an imaging base?


Re: Power Supply for Mach1GTo

teche70
 

Larry,

What are you putting you mount on? What tripod?

Todd


--- In ap-gto@..., "Larry Phillips" <llp41astro@...>
wrote:

I am new to owning an AP mount and expect to have one soon. In
preparation for that, are there any recommendations for a DC power
supply that is appropriate for the Mach1? That is, 11.5 to 16
volts DC
filters and regulated with 110 V AC input? I have an 18 V power
supply
now that I have been using with a Gemini system but this appears to
be
too high a voltage.

Larry


Wood Tripod Vs. Eagle Pier for Mach1GTO?

dave_snope
 

I'm trying to decide what is the best solution for portable imaging
with my upcoming Mach1GTO mount.

My primary imaging scope is an SV 130 F/6 refractor with STL11K. The
imaging train gets rather long with the large field flattener and STL
body, and I get more hits to the scope legs of my current Atlas mount
than I would like. I have an 8" pier extension for my mount which
helps a little but it's too wobbly. This got me thinking portable pier
to provide more "leg room", but in looking at the Eagle pictures it's
got legs too and is kinda short and I'm not convinced that it will be
much different in leg clearance than a tripod, in which case I'll look
at the wood tripod. Any thoughts on this subject from the group?

I do like the look of the wooden tripod. Are there any opinions on how
the AP wood tripod performs as an imaging base?