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Scopetech Zero Mount


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4 minutes ago, stampy10000 said:

I received my Zero mount last weekend, very happy with it so far, especially now that the slow mo controls have arrived too! I'd like to replace the clamp for something that doesn't chew up the dovetail, any recommendations?

 

119074882_241014177237617_8475306548714093227_n.thumb.jpg.b8195afbb91696d976c80714dc26d9e3.jpg

I put a thin aluminium strip between the tightening screw and the scope dovetail

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FLO have been kind enough to ship me one of these to try out, so I’ll post up my findings in this thread. It arrived this morning, nicely packaged so first off here are some unpacking shots. Firs

@Stu Please stop hitting your scopes or I will report you to the RSPCT 😂

I can comment on both, having had both in a direct comparison. Firstly, I completely agree with the review @Stuhas just posted, concurs with my findings too. The AZ5 is a fine mount, easy to

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1 hour ago, stampy10000 said:

I received my Zero mount last weekend, very happy with it so far, especially now that the slow mo controls have arrived too! I'd like to replace the clamp for something that doesn't chew up the dovetail, any recommendations?

 

119074882_241014177237617_8475306548714093227_n.thumb.jpg.b8195afbb91696d976c80714dc26d9e3.jpg

I've order one of these: https://www.firstlightoptics.com/adm-dual-type-dv-series/adm-dual-dv-dovetail-adaptor-takahashi-scopetech-mount-zero.html

Fits to 8mm drilled holes on the ScopeTech, you need to take off the Vixen mount.

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4 hours ago, stampy10000 said:

I received my Zero mount last weekend, very happy with it so far, especially now that the slow mo controls have arrived too! I'd like to replace the clamp for something that doesn't chew up the dovetail, any recommendations?

I've replaced mine with an ADM saddle (as used previously on my SkyTee), as shown in the photo below.

It's this one (the VSAD-TAK6 variant)... https://www.firstlightoptics.com/adm-replacement-saddles/adm-vixen-style-saddle.html

However, as there are holes for 6mm or 8mm saddles (35mm spacing), it will also take the VSAD-TAK8 variant, but 8mm might be overkill for it's max weight capacity anyway 👍

Hope that helps

Gary

Report372_StellaMira.jpg

Edited by HollyHound
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  • 1 month later...

Have had my Scopetech Zero for a couple of weeks or so now - thanks to FLO’s speedy turnaround - and it’s been out a few times already.

I’m very impressed with it.  Helped by some earlier comments in this thread, I found setting the Az axis tension a doddle - just a few tweaks - such that it’s super smooth to push around, and the slo-mo engages seamlessly.  Works like a dream.

Same is true for the Alt axis.  I’m using it with a Tak 76DCU, and finding the balance point was easy.  Gives me exactly the degree of control I was looking for.  Holding Mars in the fov with the slo-mos is a delight, although cloud has stopped play recently...  It’s a perfect little mount for me.  A great bit of engineering.  Beautifully made, and as smooth as silk in operation.   Love it!

Cheers all, Simon

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14 hours ago, JeremyS said:

Super little mount isn’t it Simon, @Chinapig?
Even with the heavier Tak FC 100 DZ it performs well 👍

What tripod do you use?

It’s currently sitting on an Amazon Basics!  Simply because that was vacant when the mount arrived, and I couldn’t wait to try it.  It’s surprisingly stable though, and has been fine up to 126x on Mars, for example.  It’s far from a long-term solution though, and will probably swap duties shortly with a rather sturdier Manfrotto tripod.  I do however have my eye on a Berlebach Report 312, which looks spot on.  Otherwise, it’ll be down to researching the carbon-fibre options.

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What's the largest telescope put on the Zero, seems to be around 100 mm is optimal? I'd imagine a TSA120 would be around the max weight of 7.5 kg, Vixen SD115S is around the max weight as well.

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26 minutes ago, Deadlake said:

What's the largest telescope put on the Zero, seems to be around 100 mm is optimal? I'd imagine a TSA120 would be around the max weight of 7.5 kg, Vixen SD115S is around the max weight as well.

Tak FC 100 DZ is fine. I won't be trying out my Tak TSA 120, though.

IMG_3718.jpg.38579b34e32ee87d5acc0e1840d0de4b.jpg

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59 minutes ago, TotAle said:

I wonder if it could nicely manage also this guy..

https://www.teleskop-express.de/shop/product_info.php/info/p9868_TS-Optics-Doublet-SD-Apo-102-mm-f-7---FPL53---Lanthan-Objective.html

 

I ordered the mount via FLO and I am now looking for an apo to put on it but I don't know if go for a easier 80mm grab n go or a 100mm.

I reckon that would be fine. I use both an FC100DC and a Genesis on mine quite happily. The tripod obviously makes a difference so make sure you have a good one.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi All,

Today I have received my brand new Zero mount and I am already overwhelmed by a drama.. the alt axis is very stiff. Before getting the mount I checked in this forum and I understood that some of you have experienced issue (stiffness) of the alt axis mainly because they didn't tight the knob enough (with consequent damage of the mount).

 

With this well in mind, as soon as I got the mount out of the box I checked the rotation of the axis; azimuth is very smooth and with the knob you can easily regulate the stiffness but the alt is very stiff. I also tested it with all assembled and with telescope, and yes I can move it with the hand and with the slow motion but it's very very stiff if compared to the az axis. When I move the telescope up or down, I can also see that the alt knob is moving as well. Furthermore, if I change the tension of the related alt knob, I can go from stiff to stiffer but no way to get in loose.

It doesn't look normal to me but before I return the mount to FLO, I was wondering if you have any suggestions on things that I could try.

Many thanks

Ale

 

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On 20/10/2020 at 14:10, Deadlake said:

What's the largest telescope put on the Zero, seems to be around 100 mm is optimal? I'd imagine a TSA120 would be around the max weight of 7.5 kg, Vixen SD115S is around the max weight as well.

I use my StellaMira 80mm f/10 on the ScopeTech mounted on a Berlebach Report (see photo above). This has a weight just over 7kg, so approaching the limit. All works ok for me and scope stabilises quite quickly in use after focusing or tapping it (test).

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21 minutes ago, TotAle said:

Hi All,

Today I have received my brand new Zero mount and I am already overwhelmed by a drama.. the alt axis is very stiff. Before getting the mount I checked in this forum and I understood that some of you have experienced issue (stiffness) of the alt axis mainly because they didn't tight the knob enough (with consequent damage of the mount).

 

With this well in mind, as soon as I got the mount out of the box I checked the rotation of the axis; azimuth is very smooth and with the knob you can easily regulate the stiffness but the alt is very stiff. I also tested it with all assembled and with telescope, and yes I can move it with the hand and with the slow motion but it's very very stiff if compared to the az axis. When I move the telescope up or down, I can also see that the alt knob is moving as well. Furthermore, if I change the tension of the related alt knob, I can go from stiff to stiffer but no way to get in loose.

It doesn't look normal to me but before I return the mount to FLO, I was wondering if you have any suggestions on things that I could try.

Many thanks

Ale

 

I had this issue on my first ScopeTech and unfortunately it got stiffer and then eventually seized solid! @FLO sent a replacement straight away which worked perfectly and has done ever since. 

It should be able to move smoothly and I run with the alt knob tightened a little more than loose and all still works smoothly.

If it’s not improving, I would email them and see if they replace 🤞

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1 hour ago, TotAle said:

Hi All,

Today I have received my brand new Zero mount and I am already overwhelmed by a drama.. the alt axis is very stiff. Before getting the mount I checked in this forum and I understood that some of you have experienced issue (stiffness) of the alt axis mainly because they didn't tight the knob enough (with consequent damage of the mount).

 

With this well in mind, as soon as I got the mount out of the box I checked the rotation of the axis; azimuth is very smooth and with the knob you can easily regulate the stiffness but the alt is very stiff. I also tested it with all assembled and with telescope, and yes I can move it with the hand and with the slow motion but it's very very stiff if compared to the az axis. When I move the telescope up or down, I can also see that the alt knob is moving as well. Furthermore, if I change the tension of the related alt knob, I can go from stiff to stiffer but no way to get in loose.

It doesn't look normal to me but before I return the mount to FLO, I was wondering if you have any suggestions on things that I could try.

Many thanks

Ale

 

I seem to remember a similar issue with the one I have, and I adjusted the work gear slightly which sorted it how I wanted it. I’ll have a check, but probably best to speak to FLO about it.

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@TotAle in one of the posts here I reference loosening the work gear slightly to adjust the tension. Still worth checking with FLO if it’s ok to do but suspect it will be.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Question about adjusting for backlash on the Zero’s alt axis. I want to minimise backlash when using the alt slo mo. Is this done by adjusting the tightness of the locking nuts on the end worm? Or is there another way (I see some screws on the cover over the alt screw thread, but not sure if they are for adjusting)?I think you have done this @Stu and @HollyHound?

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2 minutes ago, JeremyS said:

Question about adjusting for backlash on the Zero’s alt axis. I want to minimise backlash when using the alt slo mo. Is this done by adjusting the tightness of the locking nuts on the end worm? Or is there another way (I see some screws on the cover over the alt screw thread, but not sure if they are for adjusting)?I think you have done this @Stu and @HollyHound?

Hi Jeremy,

The only adjustment I've made to my Zero mount, is to slightly adjust the azimuth locking nuts (as described by @Stu in his first review), only because it was quite stiff out of the box. Maybe I got lucky with mine, but can't say I've had any issue with backlash... I know it was an issue with my Skytee II (now sold), as I recall  thinking how much better the Zero was.

Sorry can't help any more than that.

Cheers

Gary

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My contribution to this thread: I upgraded my zero mount with the WO vixen clamp and the Desert Sky Astro extension (at the end of the page), although the SkyWatcher extension should do nicely too. 

Currently expecting some knobs from ADM to complete the look. Also I am thinking of adding a small handle at the bottom of the mount by tapping it. I have a handle from my DM-4 mount that I shortened already and that I don't use - it would be an easy mod.

IMG_9722.jpg

Edited by nicoscy
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On 16/11/2020 at 20:12, HollyHound said:

Hi Jeremy,

The only adjustment I've made to my Zero mount, is to slightly adjust the azimuth locking nuts (as described by @Stu in his first review), only because it was quite stiff out of the box. Maybe I got lucky with mine, but can't say I've had any issue with backlash... I know it was an issue with my Skytee II (now sold), as I recall  thinking how much better the Zero was.

Sorry can't help any more than that.

Cheers

Gary

Thanks Gary. I only got a bit of backlash with the Tak 100 DZ installed (none with the Tak FC 76 DCU). I adjusted the locking nuts and now seems fine.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Bit late to the party on this one! This looks like a fine mount and really seems to fill a gap, a step up in quality from the Porta 2, and I really want one. But the price - almost £400! I'm sure its simplicity belies the engineering quality, but I do wonder whether Rowan Engineering could produce something of similar quality for a lot less money (hint, hint).

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3 minutes ago, RobertI said:

Bit late to the party on this one! This looks like a fine mount and really seems to fill a gap, a step up in quality from the Porta 2, and I really want one. But the price - almost £400! I'm sure its simplicity belies the engineering quality, but I do wonder whether Rowan Engineering could produce something of similar quality for a lot less money (hint, hint).

It certainly is both simple but highly effective... unfortunately, as you say, it's not cheap! Mine is used with either a refractor or Mak onboard and allows both smooth rapid movement and fine slow motion control, without having to adjust or lock/unlock clutches... it just gets out of the way and lets the scope do what you want it to do 😃

I would love to see Rowan produce something similar though, as I do like the look of their AZ100 mount too 👍

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