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Skywatcher AZ5 mount head


nightfisher
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18 minutes ago, Mak the Night said:

 I've actually seen pictures of 200mm SCT's on Porta mounts.

I was daft enough once to mount a SW 180 mm Mak on an AZ4.  I hasten to add though that this was only to test it on Jupiter which was low in the sky at the time when there was a brief gap in the sky and I had nothing else close at hand :smile:.

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20 minutes ago, paulastro said:

I was daft enough once to mount a SW 180 mm Mak on an AZ4.  I hasten to add though that this was only to test it on Jupiter which was low in the sky at the time when there was a brief gap in the sky and I had nothing else close at hand :smile:.

I feel like that with a 127mm Mak on the AZ5 lol.

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55 minutes ago, Mak the Night said:

I feel like that with a 127mm Mak on the AZ5 lol.

There seem to be plenty of people using the AZ5 with similar sized scopes who are quite happy with it.

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Starting to have second thoughts on this mount now, im sure it would work perfectly with both of my OTA`s, but just a case of do i really need it, i am thinking my EQ5 might be a better tool for what i am doing as it has the drives for tracking, letting me spend more time viewing objects 

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2 hours ago, nightfisher said:

Starting to have second thoughts on this mount now, im sure it would work perfectly with both of my OTA`s, but just a case of do i really need it, i am thinking my EQ5 might be a better tool for what i am doing as it has the drives for tracking, letting me spend more time viewing objects 

For your kind of observing, which I think is still mainly lunar with a bit of planetary and other higher power viewing, I think the EQ5 is probably the best bet Jules. If you were star hopping or doing lower power viewing then an AltAz may be better, but for simple tracking at high power a driven EQ5 is very stable and convenient.

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As Stu says, your EQ5 is probably the better mount Jules, especially if lunar and planetary are your thing. The AZ5 is an ideal grab and go mount for those field trips, or for observing targets that are unobserveable from your permanent site. The AZ5 would also be a handy mount to have, and easier to use than the EQ5, if you enjoy aimlessly sweeping the sky for fuzzies as its more intuitive to use than an EQ in that situation. For lunar and planetary, which is my main interest, I almost always use my Vixen GP which is permanently set up for the purpose. Not having to carry a mount out makes observing a more regular and enjoyable vent for me!

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On 18/01/2018 at 19:16, nightfisher said:

Yes thats the mount i mean, is the slo mo tracking good and smooth

Avoid the SW tripod that goes with the AZ5 if you do decide on this mount. Its not good! Its probably best to just buy the head and fit it to a standard aluminium or tubular steel tripod.

 

2017-12-29 00.46.55.jpg

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1 hour ago, Stu said:

For your kind of observing, which I think is still mainly lunar with a bit of planetary and other higher power viewing, I think the EQ5 is probably the best bet Jules. If you were star hopping or doing lower power viewing then an AltAz may be better, but for simple tracking at high power a driven EQ5 is very stable and convenient.

Stu you are right, i guess i was thinking more for the Opticstar as this was bought to cover low power work on some of the brighter messier objects, though i have actually to use it, other than a quick Luna with it, but again it might be better to use the AR90 on the EQ, and track such jems as M31, M45 and so on

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41 minutes ago, nightfisher said:

Stu you are right, i guess i was thinking more for the Opticstar as this was bought to cover low power work on some of the brighter messier objects, though i have actually to use it, other than a quick Luna with it, but again it might be better to use the AR90 on the EQ, and track such jems as M31, M45 and so on

Well, I could see a place for the AZ5 for the frac in that case. At low and medium power the tracking would be easy and setup would be very quick.

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I must admit, for low power scanning... I prefer the AZ4. Purely because it has a handle for moving the scope. The AZ5 does have a nice smooth movement and less stiction than the AZ4. But stiction isn't a massive issue for low power. 

Having said that, the ST102 on the AZ5 isn't so bad. But as the mak is short, you end up having to steer using the ota when not using the slow motion controls. 

Scanning at low power, I use AZ4 (which I sold and the bought again). For high power and manual tracking, I use AZ5. 

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On 20/01/2018 at 15:12, davyludo said:

I must admit, for low power scanning... I prefer the AZ4. Purely because it has a handle for moving the scope. The AZ5 does have a nice smooth movement and less stiction than the AZ4. But stiction isn't a massive issue for low power. 

Having said that, the ST102 on the AZ5 isn't so bad. But as the mak is short, you end up having to steer using the ota when not using the slow motion controls. 

Scanning at low power, I use AZ4 (which I sold and the bought again). For high power and manual tracking, I use AZ5. 

Bit off topic but has anybody tried this?  AZ4 handle screwed into counterbalance shaft on the Skytee 2.

Works great for scanning with the added bonus of slo mos when required

 

 

D8D90514-735F-48C9-BB89-6AE2F99E859E.jpeg

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Must say I fancy an AZ5 mount head for solar. Currently use an Ercole mini on a Gitzo tripod for all astronomy. Very happy with it, but the 60mm Lunt scope with a double stack filter is a pretty hefty customer, which means the Ercole needs to be tightened to maintain a controlled view, which in turn makes manual tracking a bit of a chore. I've never used any mount with slow motion controls before, but can imagine this would be very handy indeed. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

I have an AZ5 on the stock SW tripod which I use with my Startravel 120. At higher magnification the wobble is so bad I can't focus properly. I'm going to have to experiment some more (I've only just bought them) but I'm a little worried that the mount can't handle the 'scope even though it was recommended by FLO.

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51 minutes ago, Phil73805 said:

I have an AZ5 on the stock SW tripod which I use with my Startravel 120. At higher magnification the wobble is so bad I can't focus properly. I'm going to have to experiment some more (I've only just bought them) but I'm a little worried that the mount can't handle the 'scope even though it was recommended by FLO.

To be fair to my colleague, he said the AZ5 would be better than the AZ3 you were originally considering. 

But don't worry, you are covered by our 30-day return policy so if change your mind it won't be a problem :smile: 

HTH, 

Steve 

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43 minutes ago, FLO said:

To be fair to my colleague, he said the AZ5 would be better than the AZ3 you were originally considering. 

But don't worry, you are covered by our 30-day return policy so if change your mind it won't be a problem :smile: 

HTH, 

Steve 

It wasn't actually a critique of you guys. I know you have a returns policy, unfortunately because I received the Mount a month before the telescope I threw away the packaging that the mount came in assuming that all will be well...rookie mistake, I know. I even asked about the weight because I was intending to put on a finder scope which would add weight and I was worried...

Live and learn. I'm going to experiment some more, like trying to focus with the locks disengaged so that the wobble isn't communicated so forcefully to the mount. I'll also try work the focuser back and forth to loosen it because it's pretty tight at the moment.

I will say this though, I do not recommend this mount with the Startravel 120.

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3 minutes ago, Phil73805 said:

It wasn't actually a critique of you guys. I know you have a returns policy, unfortunately because I received the Mount a month before the telescope I threw away the packaging that the mount came in assuming that all will be well...rookie mistake, I know. I even asked about the weight because I was intending to put on a finder scope which would add weight and I was worried...

Live and learn. I'm going to experiment some more, like trying to focus with the locks disengaged so that the wobble isn't communicated so forcefully to the mount. I'll also try work the focuser back and forth to loosen it because it's pretty tight at the moment.

I will say this though, I do not recommend this mount with the Startravel 120.

I know it involves potentially more expense, but it is work trying the head on a better photo tripod or even something like an EQ5 or 6 stainless one. I think the mount can take the weight but the standard tripod is not so strong. I use my AZGTi on a photo tripod and it is very solid.

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1 hour ago, Phil73805 said:

It wasn't actually a critique of you guys. I know you have a returns policy, unfortunately because I received the Mount a month before the telescope I threw away the packaging that the mount came in assuming that all will be well...rookie mistake, I know. 

We don’t insist you retain the original packaging, you can still return it :smile: 

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On 22/02/2018 at 20:11, FLO said:

We don’t insist you retain the original packaging, you can still return it :smile: 

You are all as always, Gentlemen/Ladies and Scholars. I spoke to Martin today who was very helpful. There are a few things I'm going to try on my next outing before I consider returning it, Martin was very understanding and said that I can have a play around before deciding. If I have to return it I won't be mucking about this time, I'll just buy the Skytee 2 :D

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This is an interesting thread. When the AZ5 came out used prices seems to fall off on the AZ4 yet it would appear the AZ4 remains the heftier mount of the two. I've certainly never had any problems using my ST120 on my AZ4 at higher mags and I even used a 150P for some time with no issues. Granted it doesn't have slow motion controls but when it's well balanced I've never felt the need for them anyway. I guess it is always assumed a later version number means they are a better mount. I have no doubt it brings a far better capability to the table over the AZ3 which would in all fairness be it's direct competition regards the use of slow motion controls and lightweight portability. As for a comparison to the AZ4 it's probably not in the same bracket. An AZ4 would probably be better compared to a Giro II, mini or similar I guess??

Did you not have an AZ4 @nightfisher

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13 minutes ago, spaceboy said:

This is an interesting thread. When the AZ5 came out used prices seems to fall off on the AZ4 yet it would appear the AZ4 remains the heftier mount of the two. I've certainly never had any problems using my ST120 on my AZ4 at higher mags and I even used a 150P for some time with no issues. Granted it doesn't have slow motion controls but when it's well balanced I've never felt the need for them anyway. I guess it is always assumed a later version number means they are a better mount. I have no doubt it brings a far better capability to the table over the AZ3 which would in all fairness be it's direct competition regards the use of slow motion controls and lightweight portability. As for a comparison to the AZ4 it's probably not in the same bracket. An AZ4 would probably be better compared to a Giro II, mini or similar I guess??

Did you not have an AZ4 @nightfisher

I can only comment on the AZ4, Giro Ercole and Skytee 2.

The AZ4 is indeed a solid mount and worked OK with my ED100, 150p f5 and ED80, but its a bit rough around the edges.

The Giro Ercole is a bit big, beutiful and very smooth, but everything has to be spot on in balance, very nice mount, no idea why I sold it!!

The Skytee 2 is biggest and heaviest with slow motions, agricultural finish and engineering, but it will support a lot and is rock solid.

The OP was asking about the AZ5 which is a nice light mount and suited to smaller lighter scopes, but only when on a decent tripod.

 

Edited by Alan White
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22 minutes ago, spaceboy said:

This is an interesting thread. When the AZ5 came out used prices seems to fall off on the AZ4 yet it would appear the AZ4 remains the heftier mount of the two. I've certainly never had any problems using my ST120 on my AZ4 at higher mags and I even used a 150P for some time with no issues. Granted it doesn't have slow motion controls but when it's well balanced I've never felt the need for them anyway. I guess it is always assumed a later version number means they are a better mount. I have no doubt it brings a far better capability to the table over the AZ3 which would in all fairness be it's direct competition regards the use of slow motion controls and lightweight portability. As for a comparison to the AZ4 it's probably not in the same bracket. An AZ4 would probably be better compared to a Giro II, mini or similar I guess??

Did you not have an AZ4 @nightfisher

No.......I have had 2 AZ4, and yes they are a good mount, sometimes they need a little fettle to get the best from them, but i think for me the AZ5 would be nice with slo mo controls, but not in the market for astro gear at present

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