Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600


Jack Huerkamp
 

I have an older AP1600 mount that does not have the quick release option for the RA and Dec gears.  Is Astro-Physics going to release an upgrade kit for older mounts to allow for quick un-meshing of the gears?  I have a friend who has the new version of the mount, and he can easily un-mesh the gears and precisely balance the mount.  In my case, even with the clutches fully loosened, there remains so much resistance to movement, that achieving a precise balance is impossible.  I use an electronic fish scale to try to achieve balance, but it takes over 10# of force to get the mount to move in either direction with the clutch screws loosened.  Is this normal?

Jack Huerkamp


thefamily90 Phillips
 

My AP mounts do tend to offer some resistance when balancing but after about 30 years using AP mounts I have gotten used to it.

JimP


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Jack Huerkamp <Mallincamusa@...>
Sent: Monday, March 8, 2021 8:14:25 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600
 
I have an older AP1600 mount that does not have the quick release option for the RA and Dec gears.  Is Astro-Physics going to release an upgrade kit for older mounts to allow for quick un-meshing of the gears?  I have a friend who has the new version of the mount, and he can easily un-mesh the gears and precisely balance the mount.  In my case, even with the clutches fully loosened, there remains so much resistance to movement, that achieving a precise balance is impossible.  I use an electronic fish scale to try to achieve balance, but it takes over 10# of force to get the mount to move in either direction with the clutch screws loosened.  Is this normal?

Jack Huerkamp


Jack Huerkamp
 

JimP, granted the AP1600 offers resistance to movement even when the clutch knobs are fully loosened.  In my case it takes between 10# and 15# of pull measured with an electronic fish scale to break the friction and get the mount to move in either RA or Dec.  I try to balance the mount by checking the pull needed in both directions and getting them as close to equal as possible.  But getting a precise balance is impossible.  That is why I asked if AP was going to offer an upgraded quick release worm mechanism like they have on the current AP1600 mounts.  Quickly releasing the worm from the worm gear allows for easy and precise balancing.

Jack Huerkamp


Woody Schlom
 

Jack,

 

That does seem like a lot of friction.  I’m not sure about the AP1600’s clutch mechanism, but I suspect my old Mach1 is similar.  And in that case, the clutch system can be lubricated independently of the drive gear system.  And it’s a lot easier too.

 

Another suggestion.  You mention the electronic fish scale balancing system (which is my preference) for balancing.  But have you tried the motor current load method to see how well that might work for you?  I’m pretty sure you already have a PowerWerx voltage/current meter.  So you can try that method and see if it works any better for you.  When slewing (I used slow slew speeds) the motor current load should be the same in both directions.

 

But I’d start with re-greasing the clutch system first.  And so far as I understand it, that doesn’t require the fancy greases that come in the AP grease kit.  In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the clutch parts do better with a different kind of grease.  I believe I used a SuperLube synthetic grease for my clutch bearings.

 

I know that when I re-greased the clutch bearing system in my Mach1, it made a lot of difference.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 7:45 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

JimP, granted the AP1600 offers resistance to movement even when the clutch knobs are fully loosened.  In my case it takes between 10# and 15# of pull measured with an electronic fish scale to break the friction and get the mount to move in either RA or Dec.  I try to balance the mount by checking the pull needed in both directions and getting them as close to equal as possible.  But getting a precise balance is impossible.  That is why I asked if AP was going to offer an upgraded quick release worm mechanism like they have on the current AP1600 mounts.  Quickly releasing the worm from the worm gear allows for easy and precise balancing.

Jack Huerkamp


W Hilmo
 

I’ve not heard of a procedure for lubricating the clutches on these mounts.

 

Do you have a pointer to instructions?  My AP1600 declination clutch is pretty stiff, and has been since day one, but it’s nothing that’s a problem to work with.  I’m mainly just curious.

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 12:49 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Jack,

 

That does seem like a lot of friction.  I’m not sure about the AP1600’s clutch mechanism, but I suspect my old Mach1 is similar.  And in that case, the clutch system can be lubricated independently of the drive gear system.  And it’s a lot easier too.

 

Another suggestion.  You mention the electronic fish scale balancing system (which is my preference) for balancing.  But have you tried the motor current load method to see how well that might work for you?  I’m pretty sure you already have a PowerWerx voltage/current meter.  So you can try that method and see if it works any better for you.  When slewing (I used slow slew speeds) the motor current load should be the same in both directions.

 

But I’d start with re-greasing the clutch system first.  And so far as I understand it, that doesn’t require the fancy greases that come in the AP grease kit.  In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the clutch parts do better with a different kind of grease.  I believe I used a SuperLube synthetic grease for my clutch bearings.

 

I know that when I re-greased the clutch bearing system in my Mach1, it made a lot of difference.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 7:45 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

JimP, granted the AP1600 offers resistance to movement even when the clutch knobs are fully loosened.  In my case it takes between 10# and 15# of pull measured with an electronic fish scale to break the friction and get the mount to move in either RA or Dec.  I try to balance the mount by checking the pull needed in both directions and getting them as close to equal as possible.  But getting a precise balance is impossible.  That is why I asked if AP was going to offer an upgraded quick release worm mechanism like they have on the current AP1600 mounts.  Quickly releasing the worm from the worm gear allows for easy and precise balancing.

Jack Huerkamp


Woody Schlom
 

Actually it’s not the clutch surfaces that need lubrication, but the clutch bearings – which are not ball or roller bearings – at least on the original Mach1.

 

And in just looking this up in my Mach1 manual, I see that not all AP mounts use the same systems.  My Mach1 manual states that its clutch system is different than the AP-900 and AP-1200 and has more friction than either of them.  So the AP-1600 could be completely different.

 

And no, it’s been so long since I re-greased my Mach1’s clutch bearings, I don’t remember how I did it.  But it did NOT involve getting into the drive gears at all.

 

I’m not usually one to just tear down a fine mount without guidance, so I must have found some guidance somewhere – most likely from this group.

 

I’ll look into my long-ago notes and see if I can find something.  But hopefully somebody else with more knowledge and experience will step in here.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of W Hilmo
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 2:13 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

I’ve not heard of a procedure for lubricating the clutches on these mounts.

 

Do you have a pointer to instructions?  My AP1600 declination clutch is pretty stiff, and has been since day one, but it’s nothing that’s a problem to work with.  I’m mainly just curious.

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 12:49 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Jack,

 

That does seem like a lot of friction.  I’m not sure about the AP1600’s clutch mechanism, but I suspect my old Mach1 is similar.  And in that case, the clutch system can be lubricated independently of the drive gear system.  And it’s a lot easier too.

 

Another suggestion.  You mention the electronic fish scale balancing system (which is my preference) for balancing.  But have you tried the motor current load method to see how well that might work for you?  I’m pretty sure you already have a PowerWerx voltage/current meter.  So you can try that method and see if it works any better for you.  When slewing (I used slow slew speeds) the motor current load should be the same in both directions.

 

But I’d start with re-greasing the clutch system first.  And so far as I understand it, that doesn’t require the fancy greases that come in the AP grease kit.  In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if the clutch parts do better with a different kind of grease.  I believe I used a SuperLube synthetic grease for my clutch bearings.

 

I know that when I re-greased the clutch bearing system in my Mach1, it made a lot of difference.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Tuesday, March 9, 2021 7:45 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

JimP, granted the AP1600 offers resistance to movement even when the clutch knobs are fully loosened.  In my case it takes between 10# and 15# of pull measured with an electronic fish scale to break the friction and get the mount to move in either RA or Dec.  I try to balance the mount by checking the pull needed in both directions and getting them as close to equal as possible.  But getting a precise balance is impossible.  That is why I asked if AP was going to offer an upgraded quick release worm mechanism like they have on the current AP1600 mounts.  Quickly releasing the worm from the worm gear allows for easy and precise balancing.

Jack Huerkamp


Jack Huerkamp
 

Woody,

As far as re-greasing the clutches, I do not see a way to do that.  I removed the clutch bolts before and, if memory serves me, they had nylon tips that pressed against the internal metal disc.  

Regarding the PowerWerx in-line meter, I had purchased one years ago to do exactly what you suggested.  I placed the counterweight bar parallel to the ground on the east side of the mount, slowly slewed the weights up and down and did not see a change in current.  I then moved the mount to place the counterweights on the west side of the mount - ditto.  Maybe at that time the mount was better balanced.  I will pull out the meter and rerun the current test.

Thanks for reminding me about using the meter.

Jack


Woody Schlom
 

Jack,

 

Yes on the Nylon-tipped clutch bolts, but that’s not I greased.  At least on my Mach1, I believe there’s a sleeve bearing involved and a big flat greased surface between the two parts – not the edges where the clutch bolts contact.  But our mounts are very different I’m sure.  Opposed to Takahashi or Losmandy mounts, on my Mach1, the clutch system doesn’t ride on ball or roller bearings – just greased surfaces. 

 

Don’t know why the PowerWerks meter didn’t show you current (amp) differences.  I know you’ve got a monster of a huge and powerful mount, but it should still show a current load difference for an out-of-balance mount.  Perhaps slew at a faster speed?  And instead of starting with the CW shaft level, start below level so there’s more room for it to move at a faster slew rate?

 

And do make sure you’re looking at amps and not volts.  Volts “should” stay the same.  It’s the current or amps value that should change with how hard the motor is working.

 

If your mount is anything like mine, the grease thickness in the clutch system thins over time – so friction increases over the years.  I know that when I took mine apart, there was little grease left in the clutch system and after applying new grease to the friction surfaces (not where those spring-loaded bolts press), it was a lot easier to balance.

 

I’m surprised Roland or somebody from AP hasn’t suggested something.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2021 4:27 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Woody,

As far as re-greasing the clutches, I do not see a way to do that.  I removed the clutch bolts before and, if memory serves me, they had nylon tips that pressed against the internal metal disc.  

Regarding the PowerWerx in-line meter, I had purchased one years ago to do exactly what you suggested.  I placed the counterweight bar parallel to the ground on the east side of the mount, slowly slewed the weights up and down and did not see a change in current.  I then moved the mount to place the counterweights on the west side of the mount - ditto.  Maybe at that time the mount was better balanced.  I will pull out the meter and rerun the current test.

Thanks for reminding me about using the meter.

Jack


Worsel
 

Jack

I use the PowerWerx for balance on the 1100.  I slew at 255 or even 600 rate.  You can use either amps or watts.  For each axis, if I can get up versus down plus/minus 1 W (roughly plus/minus 0.1A at normal voltage), then I consider that 'balanced.' 

Bryan


Jack Huerkamp
 

Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp


Jack Huerkamp
 

Woody,

When I started this thread, I was hoping someone from AP would chime in about if or when a retrofit for the quick release gearboxes would be made available for my AP1600.  I assume that that will not become a reality and I will have to live with what I have.

Jack


Roland Christen
 

We are in the process of machining1600 parts and we are making extra gearboxes to be made available for older mounts. Please be patient.

Roland Christen
Astro-Physics Inc.



-----Original Message-----
From: Jack Huerkamp <Mallincamusa@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 7:55 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Woody,

When I started this thread, I was hoping someone from AP would chime in about if or when a retrofit for the quick release gearboxes would be made available for my AP1600.  I assume that that will not become a reality and I will have to live with what I have.

Jack

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Luca Marinelli
 

Roland,

Is this true also for 1100 mounts? 

Best,

Luca

On Mar 11, 2021, at 10:50 AM, Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...> wrote:


We are in the process of machining1600 parts and we are making extra gearboxes to be made available for older mounts. Please be patient.

Roland Christen
Astro-Physics Inc.



-----Original Message-----
From: Jack Huerkamp <Mallincamusa@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 7:55 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Woody,

When I started this thread, I was hoping someone from AP would chime in about if or when a retrofit for the quick release gearboxes would be made available for my AP1600.  I assume that that will not become a reality and I will have to live with what I have.

Jack

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Roland Christen
 

No, I'm afraid not at this point in time. Hopefully we can make them in tandem with the next run of 1100 parts. We could not have a full production crew at our shop for many months until the restrictions were lifted, so we are totally behind our normal schedule.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Luca Marinelli <photo@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 11:42 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Roland,

Is this true also for 1100 mounts? 

Best,

Luca

On Mar 11, 2021, at 10:50 AM, Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011@...> wrote:


We are in the process of machining1600 parts and we are making extra gearboxes to be made available for older mounts. Please be patient.

Roland Christen
Astro-Physics Inc.



-----Original Message-----
From: Jack Huerkamp <Mallincamusa@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 7:55 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Woody,

When I started this thread, I was hoping someone from AP would chime in about if or when a retrofit for the quick release gearboxes would be made available for my AP1600.  I assume that that will not become a reality and I will have to live with what I have.

Jack

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Woody Schlom
 

Jack,

 

I forgot that you have a side-by-side setup.  Those are a bear to balance.  As I recall, it took me nearly an hour to get my side-by-side solar setup properly balanced in all directions and axis the first time.  And your scopes are so much larger and heavier.

 

But at least the meter is helping.

 

All that said, if I could justify the cost, I’d sure like to get the AP gear-release retrofit kit their “new” mounts have.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:53 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp


George
 

Guys,

 

Balance side-to-side setups with a dowel rod on a table and save yourselves the headaches.

https://www.astro-physics.info/tech_support/accessories/mounting_plates/balancing-side-by-side.pdf

 

Regards,

 

George

 

George Whitney

Astro-Physics, Inc.

Phone:  815-222-6538 (direct line)

Phone:  815-282-1513 (office)

Email:  george@...

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 12:55 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Jack,

 

I forgot that you have a side-by-side setup.  Those are a bear to balance.  As I recall, it took me nearly an hour to get my side-by-side solar setup properly balanced in all directions and axis the first time.  And your scopes are so much larger and heavier.

 

But at least the meter is helping.

 

All that said, if I could justify the cost, I’d sure like to get the AP gear-release retrofit kit their “new” mounts have.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:53 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp


Woody Schlom
 

Jack,

 

I’m surprised nobody from AP has responded also.  I know there was a retrofit kit available for my old Mach1 and I thought they had them for all the AP mounts of our vintage.  But I just checked and they’re not showing ANY quick release gearbox retrofit kits now.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:55 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Woody,

When I started this thread, I was hoping someone from AP would chime in about if or when a retrofit for the quick release gearboxes would be made available for my AP1600.  I assume that that will not become a reality and I will have to live with what I have.

Jack


Woody Schlom
 

George,

 

Thank you.  That looks like a very helpful document.  It’s not the same procedure I’ve used in the past, but I’ll give it a try the next time I setup my side-by-side solar scopes.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of George
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 11:01 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Guys,

 

Balance side-to-side setups with a dowel rod on a table and save yourselves the headaches.

https://www.astro-physics.info/tech_support/accessories/mounting_plates/balancing-side-by-side.pdf

 

Regards,

 

George

 

George Whitney

Astro-Physics, Inc.

Phone:  815-222-6538 (direct line)

Phone:  815-282-1513 (office)

Email:  george@...

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 12:55 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Jack,

 

I forgot that you have a side-by-side setup.  Those are a bear to balance.  As I recall, it took me nearly an hour to get my side-by-side solar setup properly balanced in all directions and axis the first time.  And your scopes are so much larger and heavier.

 

But at least the meter is helping.

 

All that said, if I could justify the cost, I’d sure like to get the AP gear-release retrofit kit their “new” mounts have.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:53 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

 

Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp


Roland Christen
 

You could always do the pencil balance. It is quick, easy and deadly accurate.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Woody Schlom <woody_is@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 12:54 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Jack,
 
I forgot that you have a side-by-side setup.  Those are a bear to balance.  As I recall, it took me nearly an hour to get my side-by-side solar setup properly balanced in all directions and axis the first time.  And your scopes are so much larger and heavier.
 
But at least the meter is helping.
 
All that said, if I could justify the cost, I’d sure like to get the AP gear-release retrofit kit their “new” mounts have.
 
Woody
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:53 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600
 
Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Roland Christen
 

Woops, you beat me to it, George. I call it the pencil balance (i don't always have a dowel rod laying around).

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: George <george@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Thu, Mar 11, 2021 1:00 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600

Guys,
 
Balance side-to-side setups with a dowel rod on a table and save yourselves the headaches.
 
Regards,
 
George
 
George Whitney
Astro-Physics, Inc.
Phone:  815-222-6538 (direct line)
Phone:  815-282-1513 (office)
Email:  george@...
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Woody Schlom
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 12:55 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600
 
Jack,
 
I forgot that you have a side-by-side setup.  Those are a bear to balance.  As I recall, it took me nearly an hour to get my side-by-side solar setup properly balanced in all directions and axis the first time.  And your scopes are so much larger and heavier.
 
But at least the meter is helping.
 
All that said, if I could justify the cost, I’d sure like to get the AP gear-release retrofit kit their “new” mounts have.
 
Woody
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Jack Huerkamp
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 5:53 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Quick Release Gearbox Modification for Older AP1600
 
Woody,

I installed the PowerWerx meter in line with the power supply yesterday and tested balance. Al was fine in RA with equal current draw while moving the mount slowly.  However, when I set the scopes parallel to the ground and moved the mount North-South, the current draw to elevate the scopes was higher than that to lower the scopes.  So I need to correct the balance on the OTAs riding on the mount.  And since I have parallel OTAs, I not only need to check balance on the scopes in the North-South direction, I also have to adjust the parallel dovetail East-West to make sure all imbalance is accounted for.

Thanks for reminding me about the meter.

Jack Huerkamp

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics