Portable Tripod for Mach2


Wayne Hixson
 

Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?


Wayne


Bill Long
 

Eagle dude. Way too sexy to pass up on. If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of wayneh9026@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 7:51 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
 
 

Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?


Wayne


Wayne Hixson
 

Well there is the cool factor. ;-))


On Sep 11, 2019, at 7:51 PM, wayneh9026@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?


Wayne


Gabe Shaughnessy
 

I’ve used the Eagle - it’s awesome. I also have an Avalon T-pod 110 and 130. Both are excellent and very lightweight. Put a ADATRI on it, and you’re good to go with the Mach1/2.

Gabe


Roland Christen
 

There's a huge advantage to the eagle if you are ever planning to use scopes like the 160F7.5 refractor, C14 variants, 165 CFF refractor, or side by side setups with fairly large and heavy imaging scopes. However, for a smaller scope like our 130 GTX or the 140 TEC refractors, the Losmandy will do a fine job.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: wayneh9026@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Wed, Sep 11, 2019 9:52 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2



Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?

Wayne



Roland Christen
 


If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 
mmmm ....

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto@...
Sent: Wed, Sep 11, 2019 9:55 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2



Eagle dude. Way too sexy to pass up on. If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of wayneh9026@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 7:51 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
 
 
Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?

Wayne



Bill Long
 

Make it happen Roland! 😄 


From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 8:36 PM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
 
 


If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 
mmmm ....

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Sep 11, 2019 9:55 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2



Eagle dude. Way too sexy to pass up on. If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 


From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of wayneh9026@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 7:51 PM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
 
 
Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?

Wayne



Woody Schlom <woody@...>
 

I’m partial to my honey-hued Berlbach wooden tripod with my Mach1. It’s not high-tech or light-weight (25 lbs.). But it sure is pretty to look at and feel. And it’s an attention getter.



Woody



From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 8:29 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Portable Tripod for Mach2





I’ve used the Eagle - it’s awesome. I also have an Avalon T-pod 110 and 130. Both are excellent and very lightweight. Put a ADATRI on it, and you’re good to go with the Mach1/2.

Gabe


mike.hambrick@...
 

I wonder what an 8-inch version of the Eagle with a height in the range of 48 - 54 inches would weigh ? My old 8-inch portable pier is a little over 50 pounds when assembled.


Best Regards

Michael Hambrick
ARLANXEO
TSR Global Manufacturing Support
PO Box 2000
Orange, TX 77631-2000
Phone: +1 (409) 882-2799
email: mike.hambrick@...




From:        "Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto]" <ap-gto@...>
To:        "ap-gto@..." <ap-gto@...>
Date:        09/11/2019 10:38 PM
Subject:        Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
Sent by:        ap-gto@...




 

Make it happen Roland! 😄




From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent:
Wednesday, September 11, 2019 8:36 PM
To:
ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject:
Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 
 


If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago.
mmmm ....

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Sep 11, 2019 9:55 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2



Eagle dude. Way too sexy to pass up on. If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago.



From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of wayneh9026@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent:
Wednesday, September 11, 2019 7:51 PM
To:
ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject:
[ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 
 
Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?

Wayne




W Hilmo
 

+1

 

From: ap-gto@...
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 8:38 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

 

Make it happen Roland! 😄 

 


From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 8:36 PM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

 

 

If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 

mmmm ....

 

Rolando

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Sep 11, 2019 9:55 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

Eagle dude. Way too sexy to pass up on. If I could put my 1100 on an Eagle I would have done that long ago. 

 


From: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...> on behalf of wayneh9026@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 7:51 PM
To: ap-gto@... <ap-gto@...>
Subject: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

 

Looking for recommendations for a tripod/portable pier for the Mach2. I've kinda narrowed it down to Losmandy Lightweight Tripod vs Eagle. There's a big cost and weight difference but what advantages would the Eagle have over the Losmandy?

 

Wayne

 


Robert Berta
 

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 

Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 


Terri Zittritsch
 

To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2.     I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives.    I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD.   It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success.     Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression.   I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension.   My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.   
A few questions for the A-P astronuts:

1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller?   On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory?     I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.
2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it.  Is this real or an exaggeration?  I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck.    Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality.     The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter).  This is one beefy tripod!!   given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight.
3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood.   And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.  
4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest.   It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff.   Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found?   Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?

I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.   


thanks,
Terri











On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 


Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 



jon swanson
 

I really like the Eagle and how seamless it integrates with he Mach 1.  I also have the extension but remove it for imaging.  I also have the Planet and like it.  I am going to use it strictly for visual so my Eagle can be my imaging pier.  The Planet is a bit heavier than the Eagle which is why I have used the Eagle more I suspect.  But both work fine.  Just make sure you get the Planet with the Mach 1 plate on it if you go that route.


Gabe Shaughnessy
 

I can provide a comment on the T-pod.  It is very stable and the Mach 1/2 is a drop in to that tripod, provided you have the ADATRI adapter, which bolts easily to the top face of the tripod.  The ADATRI, when installed does obstruct the view of the built-in bubble level, but you have one on the Mach1 (not sure of the Mach2). 

There is one caveat about the T-pod though, which is where to put the control box adapter.  I earlier had an AP 8" extension, so it was easy to mount the adapter to that, but have since sold it.  Instead, I'm using a Q6280KIT as a spacer to allow enough room to put the adapter for the CP4 on.  It works quite well.  


Gabe Shaughnessy
 

BTW, I will say that the Eagle is by far the fastest to setup vs. the T-pod, if that's any consideration.

Gabe


Bill Long
 

I use the Losmandy HD tripod with my 1100. Seems overkill for the Mach 2. It's heavy, and I only went this route to cut down on the price of getting the mount up and running. 

Im currently in the market to replace it. Line i mentioned before, if you can go Eagle, it's a pretty awesome product. The ATS piers are nice as well. 

From: ap-gto@... on behalf of Terri Zittritsch theresamarie11@... [ap-gto] Sent: Friday, September 13, 2019 8:16 AM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2
 
 

To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2.     I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives.    I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD.   It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success.     Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression.   I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension.   My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.   

A few questions for the A-P astronuts:

1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller?   On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory?     I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.
2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it.  Is this real or an exaggeration?  I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck.    Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality.     The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter).  This is one beefy tripod!!   given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight..
3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood.   And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.  
4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest.   It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff.   Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found?   Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?

I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.   


thanks,
Terri











On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 


Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 



Charles Thompson
 

Terri, have you considered the AP portable pier?  I have the Eagle and the portable pier and like the both. Either one is quick and easy to assemble/take down and have easy attachment for the CP4. The Portable pier is much cheaper and I purchased one front someone in AstroMart for around $400 if I remember correctly. 

The only downside to the portable pier is getting it level. However, it doesn't need to be level, just polar aligned. 





Thanks,
Charles

Sent from mobile device.

-------- Original message --------
From: "Terri Zittritsch theresamarie11@... [ap-gto]" <ap-gto@...>
Date: 9/13/19 10:16 AM (GMT-06:00)
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2.     I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives.    I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD.   It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success.     Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression.   I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension.   My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.   

A few questions for the A-P astronuts:

1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller?   On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory?     I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.
2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it.  Is this real or an exaggeration?  I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck.    Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality.     The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter).  This is one beefy tripod!!   given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight..
3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood.   And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.  
4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest.   It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff.   Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found?   Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?

I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.   


thanks,
Terri











On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 


Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 



Ram
 

Does anyone know what happened to Rob Miller?
I’m so glad to have picked up his tripods when they were still available. 



On Sep 13, 2019, at 9:00 AM, cthomp97 cthomp97@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Terri, have you considered the AP portable pier?  I have the Eagle and the portable pier and like the both. Either one is quick and easy to assemble/take down and have easy attachment for the CP4. The Portable pier is much cheaper and I purchased one front someone in AstroMart for around $400 if I remember correctly. 

The only downside to the portable pier is getting it level. However, it doesn't need to be level, just polar aligned. 





Thanks,
Charles

Sent from mobile device.

-------- Original message --------
From: "Terri Zittritsch theresamarie11@... [ap-gto]" <ap-gto@...>
Date: 9/13/19 10:16 AM (GMT-06:00)
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2.     I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives.    I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD.   It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success.     Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression.   I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension.   My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.   

A few questions for the A-P astronuts:

1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller?   On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory?     I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.
2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it.  Is this real or an exaggeration?  I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck.    Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality.     The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter).  This is one beefy tripod!!   given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight..
3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood.   And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.  
4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest.   It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff.   Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found?   Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?

I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.   


thanks,
Terri











On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 


Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 



Tyrel Smith
 

I have Mach 1 on an original iOptron Tri-Pier. Works great and very light. ADATRI bolts on with no adapter needed.

Ty Smith

On Sep 13, 2019, at 13:24, Ram Viswanathan ramviswanathan@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Does anyone know what happened to Rob Miller?

I’m so glad to have picked up his tripods when they were still available. 



On Sep 13, 2019, at 9:00 AM, cthomp97 cthomp97@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

 

Terri, have you considered the AP portable pier?  I have the Eagle and the portable pier and like the both. Either one is quick and easy to assemble/take down and have easy attachment for the CP4. The Portable pier is much cheaper and I purchased one front someone in AstroMart for around $400 if I remember correctly. 

The only downside to the portable pier is getting it level. However, it doesn't need to be level, just polar aligned. 





Thanks,
Charles

Sent from mobile device.

-------- Original message --------
From: "Terri Zittritsch theresamarie11@... [ap-gto]" <ap-gto@...>
Date: 9/13/19 10:16 AM (GMT-06:00)
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Portable Tripod for Mach2

 

To continue discussion on a tripod for the Mach2.     I was originally going to buy the AP Eagle but the discussion here has convinced me that I should at least look at the alternatives.    I’ve narrowed my search down to the Losmandy folding HD tripod, the Planet wood tripod and the Avalon TPOD.   It seems that people have used all of these tripods with Mach1’s with success.     Part of the reason to look at alternatives is the cost, as the Eagle as-is, seems to need additional purchases to make it usable, or at least this is my impression.   I am almost 6’ tall and I’ll use my mach2 for both AP and visual, and my impression is that the Eagle is quite short and I’ll want the $400 8” pier extension.   My understanding is that the other tripods likely need extensions as well to make them usable for visual with long refractors, but in each case the tripod and extensions are about 1/2 the cost to acquire new.   

A few questions for the A-P astronuts:

1) If I buy a non-AP tripod, is this going to force me to cobble together a way to attach the CP4 control box and/or hand controller?   On that same vein, do the AP tripods provide this facility or do I have the same issue and have to cobble something together or buy another accessory?     I’d really like a solution that just bolts together and is neat and tidy.
2) I’ve read that the Losmandy HD folding tripod has a bunch of sharp edges that will destroy the interior of my car if I have to transport it.  Is this real or an exaggeration?  I am really more concerned with my hands than car.. as my trunk has a liner and in Vt we have a truck.    Roland seems to advocate the Losmandy which seems a good recommendation on build quality.     The other downside of the Losmandy seems to be weight at 35 pounds (without extension and adapter).  This is one beefy tripod!!   given the head is heavier than this, it’s not going to be the limiting weight..
3) On the Planet, I’ve not really heard downsides other than weight and some irrational concerns with using wood.   And weight is relative since it is lighter by 10 pounds than the Losmandy but some seem to have issues with the weight.  
4) On the TPOD, at 15 pounds without all the adapters, seems to be the lightest.   It seems very minimalist, but people have said it’s very stiff.   Is there any downside to the TPOD that anyone has found?   Has anyone built a setup with the mach1 here that includes extension and adapter, and can comment on experience?

I’m really looking for a solution I can just bolt together, have reasonable height for visual with a long refractor such as the tec140 and maybe tec160, and not have to make adapters, etc.   


thanks,
Terri











On Sep 12, 2019, at 7:40 PM, biker123@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:

A third alternative is to get a Meade Giant Field Tripod. It uses 3" diameter legs and has a large flat round top. It is rock solid and works very well for solid vibration free mounting for larger AP mounts up to 1100. I mounted the flat surface AP adaptor that takes both my 900 and 1100 mounts. I support a 6" APO refractor w SBIG STL 6303 camera or alternating with a 11" SCT with Hyperstar. I needed a tripod that would put the mount high enough so I don't have to kneel in the weeds to get to the eyepiece of the 6" reftractor. I usually set it up so the height of the top of the tripod is around 44" for the refractor. If you aren't using a long refractor you could set the tripod up lower. It will require a bit of basic metal work such as drill and taping to take the mount. 


Meade uses that tripod with a lot of their heavier scopes and I suspect a lot of people bought it with their scope/mount and later upgraded to piers so you can often find these for sale on line. Note that some of the models came with extra long legs that were designed to work with their largest refractors. Make sure that you verify how long the legs are on any specific one you are buying.

Besides mine, two of my friends have one...in both cases I modified them to take their AP mount and in one case shortened the legs a bit as it was from one of the big Meade refractor versions and was too long even at the lowest height with a big SCT.

There is one safety tip I recommend though.....the spreaders are connected with steel drift pins into aluminum. They are notorious for backing out after extended opening and closing and could fall out causing the tripod to collapse. I pushed the drift pins out and replaced with stainless steel screws and lock nuts.

They work great with one caveat....since it is a true tripod (legs to all the way to the top) if you use it with a big refractor you MAY run into cases where the telescope and camera setup may get close to one leg when tracking close to zenith. You just need to watch for that in use. SCTS and shorter refractors will have no problems.

I have used mine for 17 years and no issues. 



Ben Koltenbah
 

Wayne:

Earlier this year I invested in an ATS 8" portable pier.  It was by no means inexpensive, but I very much wanted something solid for heavier loads with easy leveling adjustments and a pier-type configuration for less interference than a full style tripod.  Around the same time I got an 1100 to run in parallel with my Mach1.  AP also recommended it because I described how some of my imaging locations weren't very level, and this would make setup easier.

The top plate of the portable pier is fitted to receive the adapters for both the Mach1 and 1100.  But I now use it only for my 1100 as I use the Mach1 concurrently with my older Berlebach tripod.  The Berlebach has been a good and trusty tripod, but I was able to observe and measure underdamped oscillations with heavier loads.  Additionally, I ran into more interference problems with the Berlebach when I wanted to image before or past the meridian.

Leveling is easy as each leg has a turnbuckle adjuster.  I want to be able to level it well as I use a RAPAS for polar alignment, which I finally just got around to dialing in to my 1100.  It works so well now that I (almost) don't need to do any further polar alignment before imaging.

Anyway, all the models already mentioned are good ones and you wouldn't go wrong with them, but I thought I'd chime in with what I considered and arrived at.  It's been a good performer for me so far.

Best Regards,
Ben