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ecormier

Help me decide between Avalon Linear or Mesu-Mount 200

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I must say that I envy you Europeans with your mounts. Having spent countless hours tweaking my geared mount (EQ6), I like the idea of maintenance-free friction and belt-driven mounts. It's too bad nobody in North America manufactures them.

I want to replace my EQ6, but I'm torn between the Avalon Linear and Mesu-Mount 200. My maximum payload for long exposures will be an 8" RC with an OAG and ASI1600 camera. I also have a 6" Mak-Newt that I would use (731mm FL). I also have a 10" Meade SCT, but I use that only for planetary work. Living under the jet stream, I don't think I'll ever want to work at longer focal lengths for deep sky astrophotography, due to my generally mediocre seeing. As for visual, I already own a 14" dobsonian.

It seems the Avalon Linear should handle my maximum payloads for their intended use. Would the Mesu-Mount 200 gain me any performance benefit for my modest payloads and mediocre seeing?

I'm able to find Avalon Linear mounts on the used market, but used Mesu mounts are rare. I can afford a brand new Mesu mount, but I'm concerned that I'd be wasting money on performance that I don't need - money that could be better spent on better optics.

This mount will be installed in an observatory that will be completed next year. I live in a rural area with decent skies (Bortle Scale 3), so I would not be travelling often with this mount; perhaps once or twice a year at star parties. Portability would be nice, but would not be as important to me as guiding/tracking performance.

I'm keeping an eye on the new friction-driven OGEM, but I dare not be an early adopter living so far away from the manufacturer.

So, would a new Mesu-Mount 200 be worth it for me, over a used Avalon Linear?

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Hi and welcome to the forums.

Nice choice to have.  I have the Mesu200 and it is excellent, can't fault it.  The benefit it may give you is the ability to mount 2 of your OTA's, as I do with my Esprit 100 and C8, so switching between deep sky and planetary is no more than a simple decision.

I'm sure others will offer opinions, but I guess there is a very good reason you don't see many used Mesu200's about.

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47 minutes ago, RayD said:

Hi and welcome to the forums.

Nice choice to have.  I have the Mesu200 and it is excellent, can't fault it.  The benefit it may give you is the ability to mount 2 of your OTA's, as I do with my Esprit 100 and C8, so switching between deep sky and planetary is no more than a simple decision.

I'm sure others will offer opinions, but I guess there is a very good reason you don't see many used Mesu200's about.

It would be nice if the Mesu could hold all of my OTAs:

  • 80mm refractor
  • 6" Mak-Newt
  • 8" RC
  • 10" SCT

I like working at different focal lengths according to the object and desired FOV.

I was thinking the SCT and Mak-Newt side-by-side, with the 80mm piggy-backed above the SCT, and the RC piggy-backed above the longer Mak Newt. It think the total weight would be under the Mesu's payload capacity, but I'm not sure about flexure and lateral balance. I've only ever mounted one OTA at a time and have no experience with multi-OTA setups.

You've certainly given me something to think about.

Edited by ecormier

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3 minutes ago, ecormier said:

It would be nice if the Mesu could hold all of my OTAs:

  • 80mm refractor
  • 6" Mak-Newt
  • 8" RC
  • 10" SCT

I like working at different focal lengths according to the object and desired FOV.

I was thinking the SCT and Mak-Newt side-by-side, with the 80mm stacked above the SCT, and the RC stacked above the longer Mak Newt. It think the total weight would be under the Mesu's payload capacity, but I'm not sure about flexure and lateral balance. I've only ever mounted one OTA at a time and have no experience with multi-OTA setups.

You've certainly given me something to think about.

I can't see why not.  Lucas believes the mount will take 100Kg.  I'm not in a position to confirm that, but I see no reason why it shouldn't if he says it will.  It would certainly take 2 or 3 of them for sure, but worth calculating the weights of all the kit to see how close it is.  

Balancing may be a bit of a task, but all food for thought.

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I have the Avalon Linear and it tracks sublimely. If you need to load in excess of 20Kg then you are looking at the Mesu. As I have a Pulsar Dome with a 500mm wide aperture, loading large large scopes side by side was never an option. Although I do image two scopes piggybacked on my Avalon.

Nice dilemma to have though :)

Steve

 

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I'm hoping to hear from someone who's owned both and tried payloads similar to my 8" RC to see if there's any difference in FWHM. If there's not much difference, then I'd be more inclined to go with a used Linear over a new Mesu-200.

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While I think the Avalon would be sufficient for my current payloads, I'm leaning towards the Mesu at this point in order to be more future-proof. I hope to be set for life with this mount. The Mesu will also provide me the option of doing visual work inside my upcoming observatory with large-aperture scopes. With my luck, someone will invent some newfangled mount drive technology in 5 five years that will cost 1/4 as much and be 3 times better. 😁

Thanks to everyone who provided guidance and information.

Without clutches, how does one balance the Mesu mount? I've searched for this, and can't seem to find anyone explaining how balancing works on a Mesu.

Edited by ecormier

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7 minutes ago, ecormier said:

While I think the Avalon would be sufficient for my current payloads, I'm leaning towards the Mesu at this point in order to be more future-proof. I hope to be set for life with this mount. The Mesu will also provide me the option of doing visual work inside my upcoming observatory with large-aperture scopes. With my luck, someone will invent some newfangled mount drive technology in 5 five years that will cost 1/4 as much and be 3 times better. 😁

Thanks to everyone who provided guidance and information.

Without clutches, how does one balance the Mesu mount? I've searched for this, and can't seem to find anyone explaining how balancing works on a Mesu.

You balance with the power off.  The axes then move, although not as freely as a conventional mount.  You soon get a feel for balance though, by just pushing/pulling and comparing resistance.

Helen

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Balancing a Mesu is a little strange with the drag of the friction drive to get used to, but with practice you can get it very close.

If you do go with the Mesu, I can reassure you it is portable, just take care lifting and you will need a big flightcase!

9CE06D41-A45A-4916-8CED-31C6ECF65178.jpeg

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I have the Mesu 200 and love it! Balancing is a little strange at first but as others have said, you pretty soon get the hang of it. I have a 6" and 4" refractor permanently mounted on it, each loaded with a camera and I have plenty of capacity to spare. A wonderful mount.

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I have the Mesu 200. Its permanently mounted in my ror shed. I love it. 

Because the mount can take the weight, I have a C11 and a TS 65EQ Quad with EFW3 filterwheel, OAG, cameras. About 20Kg in total. PHD2 guides great.

It makes imaging a dream. My only real problem is clouds !! :)

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I currently have a C11 on one side, and a piggy-backed system of  123mm and 98mm refractors on the other side (each with camera etc) - and a lot of counterweights!

Helen

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Hopefully my Mesu will arrive soon to be loaded with an Esprit 150 and a 10" LX200.  But I also  wanted to say how lovely Steve (Steppenwolf) and Helen's profile pictures are.. 

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