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New Astro-Physics mount at NEAF in April?


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  • 1 month later...

Having a little thread to myself here....

OK, we don't yet know what it will cost, but surely there must be some interest in this mount? I know I definately want one for trips to dark sites. The 1600 is too big to move comfortably...

Off to see it first hand - and the people who build it - in little over a week at NEAF :icon_rabbit: . Report to follow, for anyone interested. Err... that would be me then :p .

/Jesper

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So now that Per has convinced me that I need a GM1000HPS you want me to consider something else.

What's the point of the absolute encoder model being extra ? it's bound to cost several arms and legs anyway and if it's going to be portable then

not having to guide is one less thing to take with you.

And if I ordered one would I live long enough for it to arrive ? :)

Looking forward to your impressions anyway.

See youv'e still got Ieq45 in your sig, didn't you sell it after all ?

Dave

Edited by Davey-T
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Dave, I can't really advice on any aspect of this mount. But the encoder's are not needed for all, so why pay for them unless you need them?

The 10Micron sure has some solid mounts out there, unique in many ways. The unguided performance is striking.

For several reasons discussed in other threads the 1600 was the only mount for me all things concidered. Knowing the system well now - and loving it - makes a little version of this mount the natural choice for me. Enter the 1100!

But I care little for arguing a case for or against any particular product. Heck it's only a mount - not a football club :p !

/Jesper

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just some images of the AP1100GTO. I really want this as my mobile mount. It separates in two parts 25 and 16 lbs, but carries 110 pounds of load! Everything on it is made of aluminium, the mount, the motor houses, the knobs - there's no plastic! The base slides into a pier or a circular flat surface adaptor. The mount itself has built in alt adjustment that spans +/- 7° I believe, so you only need to point roughly to north. Both the alt and the az knobs - well, the alt is more like a wheel - adjusts like silk, even with a full load.

Encoders are available to be bolted on by the end user. They have 16.7 million pulses per rotation, 0.019 arc sec per pulse. These are the latest single track Renishaw encoders that are very forgiving with regards to mounting of the sensor. The sensor can be off by a fair bit and still pick up the position. That is good news for a DIY installer!

These encoders are the same as the ones for the 1600GTO - the only difference is how the read head is positioned. On the 1100 it's somewhat raised as the encoder ring go really tight to the housing. On the 1600 there's ample room inisde!

Roland Christen, his wife, and some of the AP team was there to answer any questions, and with the Mach1, 1100, 1600, 3600 they sure have an impressive lineup! The 3600 is next up for redesign as the current one doesn't take retro fit encoders.

The APCC software is very close to being released, and it will do all the tricks in the book - plate solving, pointing model, slew limits, custom home position etc. The APCC will need the encoders though for full functionality.

The mount on display features the RAPAS - the right angle polar alignment scope. This is a great little gadget, that allows you to align without breaking your neck. Set screws on the mount end plate will collimate the PA scope once and for all, so the same PA scope can be moved between different mounts and align perfectly. It features two concentric illuminated rings with hour markings and a simple piece of software or app that will tell you the position of Polaris. It also features the absolute encoder option, and you'll see the little read heads with the extra wiring. Each head has a blue LED indicating the operation, and the encoders also requires the extra control box, identical in size to the GTO3 box. (This box is included with the RA encoder ring). The 1100 features full internal cabling by the way - just like the 1600 and the Mach1. This is quite clever and leaves you with a very clean looking, and cable snag free setup.

I have the feeling that, at least here on SGL, AP has a rather small number of fans, perhaps due to the price here in Europe, sadly hit by customs and taxes - but 'over there' it is a formidable contender in all OTA load segments. The build quality is so over the top, and yes it IS true that the worm and worm wheel are indeed made by the company that provided NASA with the gears for ALL moving parts for the Mars rovers - including the very recent Curiosity! That's how you get a PE of less than +/- 2.5 arcsec without any correction such as PEC or encoders.

I am utterly impressed with my 1600, even without encoders, and hope one day to add the 1100 to the collection.

So here are some pics: (Roland, and his wife Marj is seen in the background scurrying about in this rather busy corner of NEAF)

/Jesper

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It's $8800, that's all I know. The 1600 is $11700 and sells here for €13450 . A guess would then land at €10000 without encoders. Polar scope and weights are sold separately though, as is saddle plate and pier/tripod.

By the way, I meant to write above that it adjusts in Az +/- 7º, the alt adjustment has off course the expected range.

It's not a grab and go, but most can handle the 11 kgs of the heaviest part, so certainly portable in my opinion.

/Jesper

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