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Walking on the Moon

Tracking Mount for Mak 150/180

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I would like to move up from my AZ4 mount to a gem. Looking for an uncomplicated tracking mount only. As I only observe I do not need go to. I use Turn left at Orion for all my go to needs.

Mount needs to be tracking only for my Mak 150 but future proof for a Mak 180. Do I need a two motor system or will RA suffice.

Any recommendations greatfully received with respect to manufacturer and type of mount.

Edited by Sirius Starwatcher
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The bare minimum would be an EQ5:- EQ5 Quite inexpensive at £245 + £69 for RA drive or £85 for dual axis.

The better mounts don't come without goto these days. The HEQ5 is very good and won't need an upgrade unless you go really large HEQ5

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Whilst the HEQ5 will certainly be up to the job, I would consider looking for a Vixen GP DX and stick it on a Berlebach tripod- it just looks nicer (better made too). If your polar alignment is good, RA tracking should indeed suffice.

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Hi Garry:

I use one of these on an EQ5 for visual and it copes easily - it wobbles a bit when focusing over x200, but not enough to cause any difficulties at all. Webcam planetary imaging is a bit harder as the higher mag makes it very wobbly when focusing. A Skymax 180 would be okay on that mount (it copes with my 8" f6 Newt at ~10kg) but if you have the spare funds an HEQ5 would be even better.

If you are not guiding (and you won't be with that Mak on an EQ5!) then a declination drive is, in my view, a waste of time. Control is easier and faster with the slow motion manual contol.


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I second Billy, 

I use a Skymax 150 on an EQ5 (Pro) and it handles it well. It does wobble a bit when focusing at high power and there is a bit of backlash but these are not big problems. I'm still getting used to it but I can focus the scope and use the slow (2x/3x) rates to get the target dead set in the sensor. The 180 is heavier (and longer FL) and may need a beefier mount (HEQ5) for best performance.


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