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John

Rowan AZ100 Alt-Azimuth Mount - More Photos

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I'm hoping for some clear skies tonight to give the Rowan AZ100 a run out with my 130mm triplet refractor on board. Since setting the scope and mount up blue skies have been replaced with a cloud layer but perhaps that will give way to something better in due course.

While I wait for darkness, here are some more photos of the mount. This mount head has been upgraded by Rowan to have what they term as damping knobs fitted to the altitude and azimuth axes. The purpose of these is to allow some adjustment to the mesh of the worm gears to obtain the smoothest motion when a heavy and potentially slightly imbalaced load is on board. The original mount head that I was sent has had the same modifications made and is now with @Stu for him to test in parallel with my own trials.

The head pictured here does not have encoders fitted (hence the plates covering the openings in the body of the mount) because I will be testing the mount as a manual one. @Stu will be giving the Nexus Digital Setting Circles unit and the encoders a thorough work out during his tests.

I must say that Dave at Rowan Astronomy has been really responsive to feedback that I've provided on the mount so far - thanks Dave :icon_salut:

Just to remind readers that the units that @Stu and I have are pre-production versions so there may still be small variations to the final product :smiley:

 

 

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7 minutes ago, johninderby said:

Like what I’m seeing. 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻
 

Do you think the one balance weight is enough?

It is not completely balancing the weight of the scope but I figure that it would be reducing the effective imbalance, hopefully to the extent that the mount should be comfortable with it.

The scope weighs around 9.5kg and the weight is 5.2 kg.

Testing under the stars should reveal more about the extent to which the scope weight needs to be fully counterbalanced across the altitude axis.

I do have some other counterweights but not in the 25mm fitting that the AZ100 uses so I will have to come up with a method of hanging them from the C/W bar alongside the Rowan weight - I'll look out a suitable bag of some sort :smiley:

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51 minutes ago, johninderby said:

I've seen those in medieval kitchens, usually with a leg of lamb or pork hanging from them !

 

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54 minutes ago, johninderby said:

Couple of large S hooks would do to temporarily hang some extra weights.

Got some of those in the garage, used to use them to lift out car engines :D

Dave

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Grrrr ....... :clouds1:

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2 hours ago, John said:

Grrrr ....... :clouds1:

Clear patch :smiley::thumbright:

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A question John if I may.

Do the motions work without the slow motions driving,
i.e. can you slew the mount with the slow motions  engaged but not being used?

I hope that makes more sense to you than it does to me at present.

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3 minutes ago, Alan White said:

A question John if I may.

Do the motions work without the slow motions driving,
i.e. can you slew the mount with the slow motions  engaged but not being used?

I hope that makes more sense to you than it does to me at present.

I can answer that one Alan. The answer is yes, you can set the clutch tension so the slo motion controls work but you can still manually slew the scope. It works very well, and of course with the encoders you can quickly position the scope on target, much quicker than a Goto mount. Nice.

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Thank you @Stu, sounds even better by the minute.
Really like the sound of this mount.
 

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1 minute ago, Alan White said:

Thank you @Stu, sounds even better by the minute.
Really like the sound of this mount.
 

It is excellent I must say. I will try to post up some commentary myself in the next day or so but suffice to say I'm impressed.

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Sorry for the delay in reporting folks.

This is a pre-production product so I don't feel that I can treat it like something that has been sent "off the shelf" from a retailer. I have had 3 fairly short sessions with the mount (1 with the original mount head and 2 with the revised version) and have made notes on my impressions of the performance so far but I've not had time to pull these together and report back here as yet.

With a pre-production unit I feel that it's important that I try to differentiate between characteristics that are likely to be found in the final product and those where the state of the development of the product will still allow further advances to be made. This is not something that I wish to hurry and also something where  I need to maintain a dialogue with the manufacturer, who have proved extremely responsive so far.

Thanks for your patience :smiley:

 

 

 

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Very well put John. Likewise I've had a couple of sessions with the unit I have, and have given some feedback to Rowan who have responded very quickly and positively. They are still tweaking things including the worm gear lubrication and setting so the units we have will not be quite the same as final production versions.

I will post some feedback up in the next day or so. I don't think anyone will be disappointed though :)

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