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Fozzie

Fixed Height Tripods - Opinions Please..

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Happy Sunny Afternoon All,

I'm feeling creative again, and contemplating changing the legs on the SkyTee2/EQ5 Tripod to something nice and wooden.. Another little project to while away the summer nights..

I really like the design of the Fixed Height Tak Style Tripods like this

926645803_em200tripod.thumb.jpg.ec0718ed04f6b0994a000c27622ce162.jpg

But then it got me thinking, how practical are they in relation so say adjustable ones.. Obviously the two main drawbacks are the lack of ability to line and level (especially and EQ mount) and the other is the lack of height adjustment, so it would need to be high enough to give comfortable viewing, which creates potential storage issues..

I'm just wondering what the general thoughts are, anyone found real issues using a fixed height tripod or any comments otherwise?

Just pondering for now.. but I do like the idea of some nice Oak (or lighter wood than my last venture) tripod legs.

Ta

Fozzie

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I expect the fixed height ones have a slight advantage in terms of rigidity and stability but I really need the ability to alter the height of my tripods so I'm staying with adjustable height ones. I now use wooden tripods exclusively and find them excellent in terms of stability and vibration resistance / dampening.

I believe my tripods are made of ash wood which is dense and has good dampening qualities which is why it's used for hammer handles and the like.

I've seen some great DIY wooden tripods but I don't have the skills or tools so I've gone for commercially made ones.

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An idea of played with myself Fozzie and then thought again given the disadvantages you highlight, but the one you have pictured looks great. I can't think of any easy way around the lack of height adjustment other than a plinth to raise it when necessary or conversely suitable sized holes dug in the garden!

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I have recently started using the little wooden tripod which came with my GP and am surprised how much I like it. It is quite short but actually I'm finding it very convenient.  To be fair I only use the GP for planetary, lunar and solar and I observe sitting down so it is relatively easy to find a comfy position.  Observing at the zenith could be a challenge!

It does have adjustable legs but I don't really use them, just plonk it down fairly level and away I go.

So, it could be a nice ideal, it just depends on the exact usage. 

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I've just taken the plunge in very similar vein - I'm not impressed at all with the tripod that came with my AZ-EQ6, which I believe is either the same or a scaled-up version of the EQ5 tripod. It's very springy, and the accessory-tray-tripling-as-spread-limiter-and-head-securing-platform is to my mind a dead-wrong design. I use it on a hard surface, and it regularly "jumps feet" even when I've thought I've been thorough in stabilizing it.

As I write I await delivery of a Berlebach Planet, which I admit is adjustable, but shares the good features of the one you picture of being wooden, huge, and possessed of a proper spread-limiter. Plus it'll take 130kg!!

Magnus

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18 minutes ago, Stu said:

I have recently started using the little wooden tripod which came with my GP and am surprised how much I like it. It is quite short but actually I'm finding it very convenient.  To be fair I only use the GP for planetary, lunar and solar and I observe sitting down so it is relatively easy to find a comfy position.  Observing at the zenith could be a challenge!

It does have adjustable legs but I don't really use them, just plonk it down fairly level and away I go.

So, it could be a nice ideal, it just depends on the exact usage. 

Ooo nice didn't know you had an original GP wooden tripod, Mines the same, now it's set up I do just "plonk" and go, but for storage and putting in the boot the tripod was measured and made with that in mind.

Usage wise, would be similar to yours for now, solar system and seasonal bright DSO in range of a 4" frac.  I've also got a half and full piller extension which is compatible if needed, but with a skytee, to future proof, if I ever get a bigger scope or another newt I'd like to have the option of timber legs

I can't use my GP tripod because that's vixen green and it would clash with the white of the skytee, and the thought of that upsets me somewhat.

21 minutes ago, Captain Magenta said:

I've just taken the plunge in very similar vein - I'm not impressed at all with the tripod that came with my AZ-EQ6, which I believe is either the same or a scaled-up version of the EQ5 tripod. It's very springy, and the accessory-tray-tripling-as-spread-limiter-and-head-securing-platform is to my mind a dead-wrong design. I use it on a hard surface, and it regularly "jumps feet" even when I've thought I've been thorough in stabilizing it.

As I write I await delivery of a Berlebach Planet, which I admit is adjustable, but shares the good features of the one you picture of being wooden, huge, and possessed of a proper spread-limiter. Plus it'll take 130kg!!

Magnus

That's sounds a great set up.. Yes it's amazing how much extra spread you can get from a EQ5 tripod when adjusting the spreader bar..

thanks for the thoughts gents, thus far..

ta

Fozzie

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Ive just bought an AZ5 tripod and mount combo. Im a wheelchair user, so observe from a seated position. I usually have scope tripods on the shortest height and that has worked well for me until now. The AZ5 tripod on its shortest height (even with the extension bit between it and the mount), is just too short. I'd need to be sitting on the ground to observe to any great degree. 

I could extend the tripod fully to observe (its not a bad height), but i'd have to attach the scope to the mount dovetail which would be tricky being in a seated position (it would be above my seated height).

I'd hate to drop my brand new Bresser ar 102 xs. I think a bit testing needs to be done (in a safe environment) before i introduce it to the universe. 

I'd LOVE to just set it up at max height with scope attached and leave it like that, but scope/tripod/mount when combined is a tad too much weight for me to handle. Add to this the fact that i will have a Quark and EP attached. Thats gonna change where my eye can view comfortably from. 

I'll work it out.

Wooden tripods are great. They transmit less vibrations to the EP. My very first scope (when i was about 10 yrs old) was a Prinz 60mm refrac on a simple Alt-Az mount (not like Alt-Az today) and wooden tripod.

I mucked it up by removing the front objective to wipe a few specks of dust off from the inside and it never came to focus again. I did have a screw left over when i put it back together.

That could have been important.

This is similar to my 1st scope, but mine was powder blue.

431754_081214121939_img_2963.jpg

Edited by LukeSkywatcher

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On ‎22‎/‎06‎/‎2018 at 17:12, LukeSkywatcher said:

Wooden tripods are great. They transmit less vibrations to the EP. My very first scope (when i was about 10 yrs old) was a Prinz 60mm refrac on a simple Alt-Az mount (not like Alt-Az today) and wooden tripod.

I mucked it up by removing the front objective to wipe a few specks of dust off from the inside and it never came to focus again. I did have a screw left over when i put it back together.

That could have been important.

This is similar to my 1st scope, but mine was powder blue.

431754_081214121939_img_2963.jpg

Why is there always a random screw left when you take something apart, despite how carefully you do it! I have similar with Ikea furnature (other flat packs are available) there's always a random bit of something left.

 

That tripod design is exactly the type I decided on when making one for my vixen GP, which so far has proved to be fantastic (apart from when I didn't tighten the leg up once).  So much so I'd like to have a go at making another.  Being as it's for a skyteeII with the additional load capability over the GP I thought about fixed height as it's more stable and you can use more wood for the loadings..

Details here...

Im sure you'll get sorted with the correct height for your viewing position, the bresser and eq5 look a good light weight option, and the quark (or lunt50) would be something I'd love to buy at some point..

Anyway I've drawn up some plans.. going to cost it out today..

1151201577_FixedHeightTripodplans.thumb.jpg.6056d3a3537121c99660ce27b2088dc2.jpg

Just need to decide on Either Euorpean Oak or Idigbo.. could even go lighter with Maple, only issue is I just want to teak oil finish, not use a 3 coat UV protect and oil combo..

If I go ahead, I'll do a MK2 wooden tripod thread.

Ta

Fozzie

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I use an EQ5 tripod but with the pillar extension on top. The pillar is heavy, pushing tripod down and absorbs vibrations. The pillar's weight makes using a metal tripod very stable. Perhaps the EQ6 pillar would have same effect.

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19 hours ago, 25585 said:

I use an EQ5 tripod but with the pillar extension on top. The pillar is heavy, pushing tripod down and absorbs vibrations. The pillar's weight makes using a metal tripod very stable. Perhaps the EQ6 pillar would have same effect.

Thanks, I've got a full and half pier extensions for use with the EQ5 and skyteeII, and yes they are heavy, but in all honesty the steel 1.75mm legs, while stable do transmit so much more ground vibrations.  Especially I found when stood, when using a 8" newt.  it's not to bad when seated with the frac.  The wooden legs I've now got on my Vixen GP are a lot better, to be honest, if got an electric focuser, I doubt I'd notice the vibrations at all, and the wood looks a lot better..

ta

Fozzie

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