Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


N. Foldager
 

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark


Rich N. <rnapo@...>
 

Hi Niels,

I had the same problem. I wasn't ready to build an observatory
so I needed a portable mount. The 900 and 1200 are (were?)
close in price. Both can be used on similar type portable piers.
I went with the 900GTO. I don't do astrophotography. The 155EDFS
is very stable on the 900GTO and 48" pier.

On their respective portable piers I'm not sure how much more
stable the 1200 is vs the 900. I am guessing that on the difference
may not be as much as if both mounts were on rock solid, permanent
piers.

The two parts of the 1200 are quite a bit more heavy than those
of the 900. If you feel like the weight isn't a problem then it would
seem like the 1200 would give more bang for buck.

My thinking was, I'll enjoy using the 900 and by the time I feel like
building an little observatory I'll get a 1200. At that point I will make
up my mind to either keep or sell the 900.

Rich

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

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Charles Sinsofsky <strfire@...>
 

Hello,
Well the 900 is an excellent match fro the 155 EDF with 4 " or standard
focuser. You do not need the 1200 ..it is VERY HEAVY. As to using a
tripod...I have never seen a 900 on a tripod..only the portable piers...I do
not belive you can use a tripod with the 900...and even if there was a way
to do it ...i do not recommend it. The 900 on the 48 portable pier is a
fantastic combo with a 155edf on it. I have one like this for my 155edf/f
(my 180edf is on my 1200) and YES it is a great combo and easy to
transport...TRUST ME the 1200 is VERY HEAVY!

- Charles

p.s. one part alone on the 1200 base is more then the entire head weight of
the 900. I rarly if ever seperate my 900 into two parts...while the 1200 I
do always.

----- Original Message -----
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: <ap-gto@egroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 11:32 AM
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Ray Gralak <ray@...>
 

Hi Charles and others,

I used to own a regular 900 and now I have a 1200GTO (which, BTW, I love)!
The extra weight of the 1200 has not deterred me from taking it to remote
sites. In fact the 1200's heaviest component definitely weighs less than
the heaviest component of my 18" dob, which I have taken out dozens of
times.

-Ray Gralak

-----Original Message-----
From: Charles Sinsofsky [mailto:strfire@attglobal.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 10:13 AM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Hello,
Well the 900 is an excellent match fro the 155 EDF with 4 " or standard
focuser. You do not need the 1200 ..it is VERY HEAVY. As to using a
tripod...I have never seen a 900 on a tripod..only the portable piers...I do
not belive you can use a tripod with the 900...and even if there was a way
to do it ...i do not recommend it. The 900 on the 48 portable pier is a
fantastic combo with a 155edf on it. I have one like this for my 155edf/f
(my 180edf is on my 1200) and YES it is a great combo and easy to
transport...TRUST ME the 1200 is VERY HEAVY!

- Charles

p.s. one part alone on the 1200 base is more then the entire head weight of
the 900. I rarly if ever seperate my 900 into two parts...while the 1200 I
do always.

----- Original Message -----
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: <ap-gto@egroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 11:32 AM
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

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John Gleason
 

Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------

From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Rich N. <rnapo@...>
 

Hi Ron,

Do you use the your 600 on the AP wood tripod?

Thanks,
Rich



The 600E is a very solid mount, and as you noted the 400 can carry a much
heavier load than you expect. I've done successful astrophotography with
both mounts, and have done so with scopes that were well outside the design
range of both mounts. And gotten swell pictures anyway. <g> I've used 8"
and
9" SCTs and Cassegrains on both the 400 and 600 with great results, and
those have been at some very long focal lengths (up to f/33 and 7000mm for
planetary photography, and that was right out there at the edge of what
these fine mounts can do).

I had some problems with my 600 GTO, and it recently came back from AP much
improved. It's now like a tank, and I think Roland has changed the specs on
the 600 mounts so that they are more robust. With the changes, the 600 GTO
is very good photographic platform. I've taken some excellent images with
it
lately (http://www.wodaski.com) with my 5" refractor. I recently acquired
an
EM-200 mount, and will be doing some side-by-side comparisons between the
two to see how they shape up.

The 600 GTO is extremely portable, which is its main attraction for me. I
bought a large Pelican case into which I can fit all mount components, and
I
can transport and set up quickly.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: John Gleason [mailto:dvj@earthlink.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:32 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Ron Wodaski <ronw@...>
 

The 600E is a very solid mount, and as you noted the 400 can carry a much
heavier load than you expect. I've done successful astrophotography with
both mounts, and have done so with scopes that were well outside the design
range of both mounts. And gotten swell pictures anyway. <g> I've used 8" and
9" SCTs and Cassegrains on both the 400 and 600 with great results, and
those have been at some very long focal lengths (up to f/33 and 7000mm for
planetary photography, and that was right out there at the edge of what
these fine mounts can do).

I had some problems with my 600 GTO, and it recently came back from AP much
improved. It's now like a tank, and I think Roland has changed the specs on
the 600 mounts so that they are more robust. With the changes, the 600 GTO
is very good photographic platform. I've taken some excellent images with it
lately (http://www.wodaski.com) with my 5" refractor. I recently acquired an
EM-200 mount, and will be doing some side-by-side comparisons between the
two to see how they shape up.

The 600 GTO is extremely portable, which is its main attraction for me. I
bought a large Pelican case into which I can fit all mount components, and I
can transport and set up quickly.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: John Gleason [mailto:dvj@earthlink.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:32 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Ron Wodaski <ronw@...>
 

Infrequently. The tripod is convenient, but I think it flexes too much for
astrophotography. It's also useless on concrete, as they legs will slide too
easily. I usually only use it when I want to do visual observing. 90% of the
time, I use the 6" portable pier. it's rock solid.

-----Original Message-----
From: Rich N. [mailto:rnapo@znet.com]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:12 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Hi Ron,

Do you use the your 600 on the AP wood tripod?

Thanks,
Rich



The 600E is a very solid mount, and as you noted the 400 can carry a much
heavier load than you expect. I've done successful astrophotography with
both mounts, and have done so with scopes that were well outside the design
range of both mounts. And gotten swell pictures anyway. <g> I've used 8"
and
9" SCTs and Cassegrains on both the 400 and 600 with great results, and
those have been at some very long focal lengths (up to f/33 and 7000mm for
planetary photography, and that was right out there at the edge of what
these fine mounts can do).

I had some problems with my 600 GTO, and it recently came back from AP much
improved. It's now like a tank, and I think Roland has changed the specs on
the 600 mounts so that they are more robust. With the changes, the 600 GTO
is very good photographic platform. I've taken some excellent images with
it
lately (http://www.wodaski.com) with my 5" refractor. I recently acquired
an
EM-200 mount, and will be doing some side-by-side comparisons between the
two to see how they shape up.

The 600 GTO is extremely portable, which is its main attraction for me. I
bought a large Pelican case into which I can fit all mount components, and
I
can transport and set up quickly.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: John Gleason [mailto:dvj@earthlink.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:32 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Rich N. <rnapo@...>
 

Thanks Ron!

Rich



Infrequently. The tripod is convenient, but I think it flexes too much for
astrophotography. It's also useless on concrete, as they legs will slide
too
easily. I usually only use it when I want to do visual observing. 90% of
the
time, I use the 6" portable pier. it's rock solid.


RCK <rkuberek@...>
 

"Rich N." wrote:

Thanks Ron!

Rich

Infrequently. The tripod is convenient, but I think it flexes too much for
astrophotography. It's also useless on concrete, as they legs will slide
too
easily. I usually only use it when I want to do visual observing. 90% of
the
time, I use the 6" portable pier. it's rock solid.
To me the 900 seems more portable than the 600 because the head breaks
into two pieces. The 600 is ok on the tripod for visual, better on the pier.
the 900 needs the pier, imho.

Most of the images on my site are with the 600, though.

http://www.ccdastronomy.org/

Bob K.


Derek Wong <dawong@...>
 

Ray Gralak wrote:

I used to own a regular 900 and now I have a 1200GTO (which, BTW, I love)!
The extra weight of the 1200 has not deterred me from taking it to remote
sites. In fact the 1200's heaviest component definitely weighs less than
the heaviest component of my 18" dob, which I have taken out dozens of
times.
Hi Ray and everyone:

I am on the list to order a 900, but I may reconsider. My problem is
not weight--I can carry my 18" dob or 65# 12" solid tube with no
problem. Unfortunately, lowering the 27# head exactly straight down
into the tripod is all I can handle. If I am a bit off the head sticks
into the tripod obliquely and has to be yanked out. I am afraid that
the 47# 1200 RA head will do the same thing. Can you lower it in
without a problem, and can you bench more than 200# :-)

Thanks,

Derek


Rich N. <rnapo@...>
 

----->Hi Ray and everyone:

I am on the list to order a 900, but I may reconsider. My problem is
not weight--I can carry my 18" dob or 65# 12" solid tube with no
problem. Unfortunately, lowering the 27# head exactly straight down
into the tripod is all I can handle. If I am a bit off the head sticks
into the tripod obliquely and has to be yanked out. I am afraid that
the 47# 1200 RA head will do the same thing. Can you lower it in
without a problem, and can you bench more than 200# :-)

Thanks,

Derek

Hi Derek,

The 900 and 1200 don't fit down into a ring like the 400 and 600.
The 900 and 1200 sit on top of a plate. So they can't get
"cocked" a little sideways in the top of the tripod/pier.

Rich


Derek Wong <dawong@...>
 

The 900 and 1200 don't fit down into a ring like the 400 and 600.
The 900 and 1200 sit on top of a plate. So they can't get
"cocked" a little sideways in the top of the tripod/pier.
Thanks Rich,

I've seen both mounts and used scopes on them but never set one up. I
don't know if AP is going to RTMC, so...is it easy for a normal sized
person to lower the 1200 RA onto the plate, fasten any connectors and
set it up without any help and without dropping it?

Derek


Rich N. <rnapo@...>
 

The 900 and 1200 don't fit down into a ring like the 400 and 600.
The 900 and 1200 sit on top of a plate. So they can't get
"cocked" a little sideways in the top of the tripod/pier.
Thanks Rich,

I've seen both mounts and used scopes on them but never set one up. I
don't know if AP is going to RTMC, so...is it easy for a normal sized
person to lower the 1200 RA onto the plate, fasten any connectors and
set it up without any help and without dropping it?

Derek

Hi Derek,

I've only watched the 1200 attached to its pier. Ray G.
didn't seem to have a problem with it.

With the poor weather we have had I've only set up
my 900 twice. I used my taller 54" pier, but no problem
putting the RA section on the pier.

You need to be sure the "Az screws" will fit over the projection
on the base plate. And, there is a rounded bolt head in the center
of the plate that fits into a hole in the bottom of the RA section
of the mount. I assume the rounded bolt head is to make centering
the mount on the base plate easier.

Rich


Bob Luffel <bluffel@...>
 

An excellent point.

The 600 is the smallest stable mount for visual with the 155. It
is much more solid than it even appears. I really like the completely self
contained design, very clean and uncluttered.

What makes the 600 so attractive to me is that it fits my style of observing.
I usually only have an hour or two at a time, so quick setup and tear down
are what make the difference between going out or being lazy. The 600 with
counterweight shaft can be carried in one trip, compared to the mounts that
disassemble (I know, it may be a minor point - but when I am tired at the end
of a long weekday a few extra trips up out of the basement have been known to
deter me from some great views).

I have done some CCD imaging on the 600 mount (track and accumulate) with
very good results. The newer goto version (I also had a QMD previously)
appears to have even lower periodic error. Mine is definitely less than +/-
5 arcsec (and my older QMD was right around +/- 5 arcsec). This is simply
outstanding and will be a piece of cake to manually guide (and PEC will
further improve it). The 900 mount will be more stable in wind and less
affected by the inevitible bump or two, but the 600 mount is more than
accurate enough. Still, I agree with John - if you are really serious about
imaging the 900 is the better choice and will enable the use of future
larger scopes.. (currently I use a GM200 for medium format with my 155EDF,
but the 1200 mount is luring me...).

Definitely use the pier for best stability (though, the tripod is very good
as tripods go).


Bob Luffel


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

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Bob Luffel <bluffel@...>
 

Hi Ron,

I would be interested in hearing what problems/fixes you had with your
600GTO (so that those of us with 600s know what to keep an eye out for).
The prior 600E QMD I owned worked flawlessly (and my new 600E GTO has been
great).

I had a chance to use an EM200 mount this past Astrofest for the first time,
it will be interesting to hear your experienced comparison to the 600.

Which Pelican case do you pack your 600 into? (I have the A-P case, but
a padded pelican would probably be an even more convenient way to go).


Bob Luffel


The 600E is a very solid mount, and as you noted the 400 can carry a much
heavier load than you expect. I've done successful astrophotography with
both mounts, and have done so with scopes that were well outside the design
range of both mounts. And gotten swell pictures anyway. <g> I've used 8" and
9" SCTs and Cassegrains on both the 400 and 600 with great results, and
those have been at some very long focal lengths (up to f/33 and 7000mm for
planetary photography, and that was right out there at the edge of what
these fine mounts can do).

I had some problems with my 600 GTO, and it recently came back from AP much
improved. It's now like a tank, and I think Roland has changed the specs on
the 600 mounts so that they are more robust. With the changes, the 600 GTO
is very good photographic platform. I've taken some excellent images with it
lately (http://www.wodaski.com) with my 5" refractor. I recently acquired an
EM-200 mount, and will be doing some side-by-side comparisons between the
two to see how they shape up.

The 600 GTO is extremely portable, which is its main attraction for me. I
bought a large Pelican case into which I can fit all mount components, and I
can transport and set up quickly.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: John Gleason [mailto:dvj@earthlink.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:32 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

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Ray Gralak <ray@...>
 

Hi Ray and everyone:

I am on the list to order a 900, but I may reconsider. My problem is
not weight--I can carry my 18" dob or 65# 12" solid tube with no
problem. Unfortunately, lowering the 27# head exactly straight down
into the tripod is all I can handle. If I am a bit off the head sticks
into the tripod obliquely and has to be yanked out. I am afraid that
the 47# 1200 RA head will do the same thing. Can you lower it in
without a problem, and can you bench more than 200# :-)
Hi Derek,

All I do is "hug" the 1200's RA head and place it on top
of the pier. If you get too tall of a pier it might be
a lot harder to get it on top of the pier. I always make
sure to lift straight up from my legs to not put stress
on my back (I haven't injured anything yet!) And no,
I'm not a weightlifter, just a software engineer. :-)

Take care,

-Ray Gralak


Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky <mrrockets@...>
 

"Rich N." wrote:
<SNIP>
You need to be sure the "Az screws" will fit over the projection
<snip>
the mount on the base plate easier.
This is one of those times a digital picture would be a 1000 words.
Jeff


Bob Luffel <bluffel@...>
 

Sounds like it just needed adjustment of the worm to worm gear distance. My
new 600GTO has both 600X and 1200X speeds.

That must be a pretty hefty setup, all packed into one case
Thanks for the info.

Bob


My 600 GTO would stall out at 1200x with a 20-pound load, even if it was
balanced. The mount came back with what sounds like heftier motors and a
slower top speed (600x instead of 1200x), and works great; slews like a
tank. <g>

I have the Pelican 1650. It has big wheels on one end, handles on three
sides, and the mount takes up about 2/3rds of the interior, leaving room for
other stuff (counterweights, cwt shaft, controllers, etc.). It's a SUPER
case for the 600 GTO. I wouldn't hesitate to put it on an airline; that's
about as happy as I get with a case.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: Bob Luffel [mailto:bluffel@nukin.gr.hp.com]
Sent: Friday, March 17, 2000 9:38 AM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Hi Ron,

I would be interested in hearing what problems/fixes you had with your
600GTO (so that those of us with 600s know what to keep an eye out for).
The prior 600E QMD I owned worked flawlessly (and my new 600E GTO has been
great).

I had a chance to use an EM200 mount this past Astrofest for the first time,
it will be interesting to hear your experienced comparison to the 600.

Which Pelican case do you pack your 600 into? (I have the A-P case, but
a padded pelican would probably be an even more convenient way to go).


Bob Luffel



The 600E is a very solid mount, and as you noted the 400 can carry a much
heavier load than you expect. I've done successful astrophotography with
both mounts, and have done so with scopes that were well outside the
design
range of both mounts. And gotten swell pictures anyway. <g> I've used 8"
and
9" SCTs and Cassegrains on both the 400 and 600 with great results, and
those have been at some very long focal lengths (up to f/33 and 7000mm for
planetary photography, and that was right out there at the edge of what
these fine mounts can do).

I had some problems with my 600 GTO, and it recently came back from AP
much
improved. It's now like a tank, and I think Roland has changed the specs
on
the 600 mounts so that they are more robust. With the changes, the 600 GTO
is very good photographic platform. I've taken some excellent images with
it
lately (http://www.wodaski.com) with my 5" refractor. I recently acquired
an
EM-200 mount, and will be doing some side-by-side comparisons between the
two to see how they shape up.

The 600 GTO is extremely portable, which is its main attraction for me. I
bought a large Pelican case into which I can fit all mount components, and
I
can transport and set up quickly.

Ron Wodaski

-----Original Message-----
From: John Gleason [mailto:dvj@earthlink.net]
Sent: Thursday, March 16, 2000 7:32 PM
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?


Don't rule out the AP goto 600 mount. If you are not too serious about
astrophotography and have the AP155 with the 2.7" focuser, I would suggest
the 600 as a best all around mount for portability and support of the 6".
I have used the entire AP QMD mount product line and was very surprised to
see just how well the 600 supported even the 155 EDF for serious visual
observation. I mounted the AP 400 once to a standard Losmandy Pier and
even went as far to put the 155 EDF on it. Not recommended, but it did
support the telescope for visual work at my great surprise.

If on the otherhand you are obsessed with catching photons on film or
silicon, I wouldn't use anything less then the 900.

Happy choosing!

John Gleason, dvj@earthlink.net
http://www.celestialimage.com



----------
From: N. Foldager <nf@dadlnet.dk>
To: ap-gto@egroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Should I select 900GTO or 1200GTO?
Date: Thursday, March 16, 2000 8:32 AM

I would like someday to purchase an AP 155 Starfire, but for
economical reasons I have to start with the mount, and wait with the
scope. (In the meantime, I will use a good, homebuilt 4" doublet).

But should I select a 900GTO or a GTO-1200 mount?

One big problem is that I am several thousands kilometers away from
the showrooms; so I need your help.

If I had a permanent observation site, I would undoubtly select the
GTO-1200. However, as for now, I do not have a permanent site. I hope
to get one within some years. Until then, I will have to transport
the equipment in my (compact) car every time.

Paul Gustafson has a 900GTO and kindly gave me some clues to this
problem. I would like, however, to supplement with the opinions from
other users; in particular 1200GTO owners who have to transport their
mount by car to the observation site.

Would you think that the 1200GTO is too big and heavy for me in the
situation described above?

If I purchase a 900GTO, will I regret that I did not select the
1200GTO the day where I have a permanent site and maybe want to add
another scope or more equipment?

Also, I understand that the 1200GTO needs a pier where the 900GTO can
do with a tripod. Right? That means that I have to include the weight
and volume drawbacks of a pier versus a tripod when I consider
portability of these two mounts.

I very much appreciate any comments on this.

Best regards,

Niels Foldager
Copenhagen
Denmark

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N. Foldager
 

Thank you so much to all of you for your kind answers.

Before I retract to make my decision, I have two more questions:

The specs for the 1200 states a capacity of 140 lb.
What is the capacity for the 900?

Is pointing and tracking accuracy the same for those two mounts?


Best regards,

Niels