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My RA finder makes my XT8 too top heavy for lower observations...any advice?


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Hi all,

 

In.a nutshell, my 9x50 RA viewfinder is wonderful but makes my XT8 tip forward due to the weight if I try to do any low observations. For example, trying to look at Jupiter at the moment from southern UK means having to push on the bottom of the scope to counteract gravity.

This must be a common problem with telescopes...so my question is, is there anything I can do to fix this? Any tips or tricks you guys use? 

Thanks for reading. 

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It just sits in the mount, with roller mechanism

With Skywatcher mount, has locking handles either side to secure mount to the scope, to stop movement

Not sure can put a small counter weight, primary mirror end, small bag of sand to counter balance

John

 

Skywatcher 10 inch Dobson.jpg

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The coolest thing I found to balance a small dobsonian is magnetic tape, they sell it in rolls two inches an one inch wide. You don't tape it to the scope but to itself then place it on the scope.

Just wrap a strip around the tube adhesive side up then cut a matching strip and apply it bonding both adhesive sides together. Must be done on the tube so it takes it's shape, I did this for countering my laser, 8x50 finder and extended dew/light shield on my 8" dob  and it works great simply sliding it up or down or removing it to balance...Very inexpensive, functional, uniform weighting and good looking solution applicable for many telescopes and counterweights not just dobsonian tubes not to mention this streamlined approach will not get in the way of rockerbox components or cooling fan wiring when used on a dobsonian. Did I mention it will never scratch the finish either 😉 

Here is a pic...

Best of Luck and Clear Skies of course Everyone!

                       Freddie...

IMG_20190630_223946_1.jpg

Edited by SIDO
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+1 for adding a counterweight.  You could temporarily tape substitutes to the tube to see how well this works. Your kitchen will have all sorts of various temporary weights to try.

Best to fix a counterweight under the back end of the tube so that it’s balanced longitudinally as well as radially.  If you just balance longitudinally that will be fine for low elevations but not for overhead.  Balance radially as well and overhead will be ok too.  This is not obvious until you try it.......

Ed.

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 If you attach one end of a heavy chain to the back end and the other sitting on the turntable, more of the weight comes into play at low elevations and much less at higher elevation. 

John

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I use a plastic magnetic strip (intended for kitchen knives) and a couple of iron weights which I can switch around to counterbalance my 12 inch dob. The tube of my scope is aluminum so I can't use magnetic weights directly onto the tube. With 2 inch eyepieces, and a couple of finders, my dob would be top heavy if I did not use this:

12dobwaiting.JPG.2acb5d7919719e1b025a7faaa9c753b1.JPG

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5 hours ago, John said:

I use a plastic magnetic strip (intended for kitchen knives) and a couple of iron weights which I can switch around to counterbalance my 12 inch dob. The tube of my scope is aluminum so I can't use magnetic weights directly onto the tube. With 2 inch eyepieces, and a couple of finders, my dob would be top heavy if I did not use this:

12dobwaiting.JPG.2acb5d7919719e1b025a7faaa9c753b1.JPG

Several years ago before becoming disabled I ordered two high end chrome roof rack slides for automobiles for use on my 12 and 16" dobs as counterweight slides, my circumstances left them stored in the garage rafters until now and your photo reminded me of them. Thanks for the reminder...They can be cut to length and the endcaps re attached so I've got quite a system just have to get that sorted. Can't believe I forgot a $200 purchase, must be the injury trama or maybe just old age I guess...

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7 hours ago, John said:

I use a plastic magnetic strip (intended for kitchen knives) and a couple of iron weights which I can switch around to counterbalance my 12 inch dob. The tube of my scope is aluminum so I can't use magnetic weights directly onto the tube. With 2 inch eyepieces, and a couple of finders, my dob would be top heavy if I did not use this:

12dobwaiting.JPG.2acb5d7919719e1b025a7faaa9c753b1.JPG

That's nice and tidy...I like that very much. Thanks for posting the image.

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2 hours ago, MSammon said:

You’re welcome. I need to buy one of these right angles finders. I’m hopeless at finding stuff. 

Not sure if linking to my post is allowed, but I just bought a RA finder last week and it's changed everything. Super super easy to find targets. You can read more on my session with one here

Best money I've spent. Get one if you live somewhere with fairly bad light pollution. 

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3 hours ago, MSammon said:

You’re welcome. I need to buy one of these right angles finders. I’m hopeless at finding stuff. 

First thing I got when purchased my Dob

We have also upgraded the 3 club 10" flex Dobs to right angle finderscope as well

Saves having to lay on the ground, to use

When out with my club doing presentation schools/scout groups, just a quick glimpse finderscope, to determined if planets or other DSO still in view

John

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