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Old EQ-5 mount


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This EQ-5 is described as the 'old' version.

Is it very different from the current one, if at all?

I'd like to add motors, probably Nema 14 or 17, and am unsure if it is possible to do so on this version.

Any advice please?


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The older "EQ5" which was classed EQ4 had a far more flimsy 1 - 1 1/4" steel tripod (upgrade from aluminium) and plastic leg clamps that held the tripod spreader. This mount will have been offered during the transition period where Helios ceased and Sky-watcher took over. The internals of the mount were also overhauled on the later EQ5 mounts. Usually this was identified by a 1 1/2" stainless steel tripod with Ali tripod spreader / eyepiece tray but there were some known to come with the earlier 1" steel tripod.

The easiest way to know if you have the later and better EQ5 or earlier EQ4 is the polar scope holder hole that runs up through the RA axis was a lot smaller on the EQ4 and will not accept the newer polar scopes. If this is the case and you need a polar scope you may have some difficulty as the thinner universal polar scopes used years ago are hard to come by these days.

This now leads on to the motors. You can use modern EQ5 motors on the mount https://www.firstlightoptics.com/skywatcher-mounts/enhanced-dual-axis-dc-motor-drives-for-eq-5.html but with out a polar scope you will not get accurate tracking easily. You can roughly PA without a polar scope and use it for visual just fine but it would never be accurate enough for long exposure imaging as it will often requiring slight adjustment every now and again to keep the object in the centred at higher magnifications.

For all intense purposes the mount is comparable to an EQ5 and will see you good. You can if you so chose, upgrade the tripod to the later 1 1/2" SS leg version http://www.rothervalleyoptics.co.uk/skywatcher-stainless-steel-tripod-175-for-eq5heq5.html which is far more robust. You would need all the components including the longer centre bolt which rarely comes supplied if you decided to buy used. These do come up from time to time on astroboot.




Edited by spaceboy
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It looks just like the "new" version, except that it is black.  The tripod is slightly different, the latest version uses the same tripod as the HEQ5, the original version uses a triangular accessory tray.. This mount is a standard non-goto version that accepts the dual axis or synscan motors.

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