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help me choose a mount please


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hi all. just acquiring parts for my evostar 72ed. I have narrowed it down to either the scopetech zero or the altair astro starwave mini az. the scopetech has the advantage of slow mo, but if any users of the starwave can comment on how easy it is to track targets then that may influence my decision. 

Im looking for something lightweight and intuitive to use. I plan to use it with an innorel carbon fibre tripod. 

any recommendations or advice would be greatly appreciated 

kind regards 

John 

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The starwave mini has clutches so you can tighten both axis but I didn't find them very intuitive to use, I liked the appeal of the small mount but I sold it due to no use. For the same application I now have the tecnosky cubo which is much more heavy duty and precise tightening and easy to point. If you're used to slow motion controls however it might not suit you, an az5 may be better.

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39 minutes ago, Elp said:

Or even better an azgti.

thanks for the reply. I already have an az gti and I dislike the set up time involved. too much hassle for my observing habits and doesn't get used anymore,hence looking for something quick and hassle free to set up. as it happens I'm using a small dob mount for my 72ed which is from a zhumell 100mm reflector. it's ok but it won't go to zenith and its abit jerky in use. slow mo is not totally necessary but I like the fact that the scopetech can be slewed manually and also use slow mo without adjusting the clutches 

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47 minutes ago, Elp said:

The starwave mini has clutches so you can tighten both axis but I didn't find them very intuitive to use, I liked the appeal of the small mount but I sold it due to no use. For the same application I now have the tecnosky cubo which is much more heavy duty and precise tightening and easy to point. If you're used to slow motion controls however it might not suit you, an az5 may be better.

that technosky cubo looks nice is it available in the UK? 

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Azgti isn't too time consuming to setup, especially in altaz mode and with a crosshair reticule eyepiece, the mobile control and goto make it so much easier to use even if the goto can be off sometimes, I found it to be one of the best purchases for me anyway.

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Tecnosky cubo for what I found is not available in the UK, you'll have to import it from Europe, it's a heavy block of a thing, think the body is diecast zinc hence the weight.

Another option I was looking at prior was the stellarvue m002c, but this is a USA import and doesn't have the benefit of a counterweight bar. Guess if it's on a good enough tripod it doesn't need one.

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5 minutes ago, Elp said:

Azgti isn't too time consuming to setup, especially in altaz mode and with a crosshair reticule eyepiece, the mobile control and goto make it so much easier to use even if the goto can be off sometimes, I found it to be one of the best purchases for me anyway.

I literally observe  for 30 minutes maximum most of the time and am unable to leave the scope out for extended sessions. hence it doesn't work for me. our if interest, what didn't you like about the starwave mini az? 

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9 minutes ago, banjaxed said:

I have my ST120 mounted on an AZ5 with a stainless steel tripod and it is up and ready in a couple of minutes, it is very steady and the slo mo controls are very smooth.

are you able to slew the scope without unlocking the clutches?  sounds like a nice set up either way :)

Edited by johnnyp
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"what didn't you like about the starwave mini az?"

The friction clutches are a little lightweight so it kind of feels on or off. The cubo in comparison you can tighten to your liking so it holds the telescope in place yet still move it slowly if you want with the friction from the clutches.

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28 minutes ago, Elp said:

"what didn't you like about the starwave mini az?"

The friction clutches are a little lightweight so it kind of feels on or off. The cubo in comparison you can tighten to your liking so it holds the telescope in place yet still move it slowly if you want with the friction from the clutches.

ah that's makes sense. I don't think it will be for me then. I'll look at the tecnosky abit more. what does it weigh? 

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14 minutes ago, Elp said:

Probably 1-2kg maybe a bit more, you'll also need a separate saddle, I used the William Optics one.

many thanks. Will defo look into this more. 

anyone with experiences of the scopetech zero? 

cheers 

John 

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12 hours ago, johnnyp said:

many thanks. Will defo look into this more. 

anyone with experiences of the scopetech zero? 

cheers 

John 

I've had my zero for about 6 months now. It's very well made (typical japanese quality) and light weight. I use it for my 80 f/6 triplet on a modified ES ST-1 tripod with a pair of ADM slow motion knobs as a quick grab'n'go setup. If cool down isn't factored in, the whole thing is ready for use in less than 5 mins.  I also replaced the stock saddle with an ADM one as I prefer something that properly clamps onto the dovetail rather than relying on a single bolt.

The zero requires proper balance in the altitude axis if you want to keep the clutcher slightly loose (in the user manual it is advised not to over tighten the clutchers anyway) so that both slow motion and nudging can work at the same time. I used to have an Altair Sabre v2. Despite its very good build quality, smooth bearings and friction clutchers I still couldn't live without slow motion (at high mag), therefore I sold it.

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7 hours ago, KP82 said:

I've had my zero for about 6 months now. It's very well made (typical japanese quality) and light weight. I use it for my 80 f/6 triplet on a modified ES ST-1 tripod with a pair of ADM slow motion knobs as a quick grab'n'go setup. If cool down isn't factored in, the whole thing is ready for use in less than 5 mins.  I also replaced the stock saddle with an ADM one as I prefer something that properly clamps onto the dovetail rather than relying on a single bolt.

The zero requires proper balance in the altitude axis if you want to keep the clutcher slightly loose (in the user manual it is advised not to over tighten the clutchers anyway) so that both slow motion and nudging can work at the same time. I used to have an Altair Sabre v2. Despite its very good build quality, smooth bearings and friction clutchers I still couldn't live without slow motion (at high mag), therefore I sold it.

this mount is starting to sound perfect for what I need. lightweight and no need to fiddle with clutches all the time. abit pricey for what it is but you only live once I guess. how smooth is it to slew around by hand?  many thanks for the feedback it's very useful 

Edited by johnnyp
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14 hours ago, johnnyp said:

this mount is starting to sound perfect for what I need. lightweight and no need to fiddle with clutches all the time. abit pricey for what it is but you only live once I guess. how smooth is it to slew around by hand?  many thanks for the feedback it's very useful 

Slew by hand in the azimuth is very smooth, but could be a bit stiff in the altitude if you leave the clutchers in a position that allows for both slow motion and nudging. If you mainly use your small fracs for widefield sweeping, I'd say loose the altitude clutcher a little further. Just make sure you have the scope well balanced to avoid the nose or the tail hitting the mount/tripod by gravity when you let it go.

The zero isn't without any shortcomes. I believe it's designed primarily for 60 - 100mm refractors (most popular type of scopes in Japan I've heard). If you mount a 5 - 6" reflector/cassegrain on it, the azimuth clutcher knob could get in the way when you try to view some targets closer to the horizon.

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3 hours ago, KP82 said:

Slew by hand in the azimuth is very smooth, but could be a bit stiff in the altitude if you leave the clutchers in a position that allows for both slow motion and nudging. If you mainly use your small fracs for widefield sweeping, I'd say loose the altitude clutcher a little further. Just make sure you have the scope well balanced to avoid the nose or the tail hitting the mount/tripod by gravity when you let it go.

The zero isn't without any shortcomes. I believe it's designed primarily for 60 - 100mm refractors (most popular type of scopes in Japan I've heard). If you mount a 5 - 6" reflector/cassegrain on it, the azimuth clutcher knob could get in the way when you try to view some targets closer to the horizon.

thanks for this. I only plan to mount my evostar 72ed on it so should be no problem for this mount. nearly time to pull the trigger :)

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I treated myself to a Scopetech Mount Zero a few weeks ago and I couldn't be happier with it. Very lightweight and simple but surprisingly sturdy and a real joy to use.

Like other posters have said, it is sensitive to the balance of the scope but it's easy to tell if that needs adjusting because you can feel that it takes more effort to move the slow motion controls in one direction than the other. It's also worth taking the time to adjust it to your liking which can be done via the clutches and also by adjusting the brass nuts on the ends of the slow-mo mechanisms. Be subtle and take your time with it because you only need tiny adjustments of a fraction of a turn to find the right level of friction and to take out any slack in the mechanism, but it's easy to do with a couple of 13mm spanners and makes a real difference to the smoothness and accuracy of the mount.

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On 23/12/2021 at 00:53, Andrew_B said:

I treated myself to a Scopetech Mount Zero a few weeks ago and I couldn't be happier with it. Very lightweight and simple but surprisingly sturdy and a real joy to use.

Like other posters have said, it is sensitive to the balance of the scope but it's easy to tell if that needs adjusting because you can feel that it takes more effort to move the slow motion controls in one direction than the other. It's also worth taking the time to adjust it to your liking which can be done via the clutches and also by adjusting the brass nuts on the ends of the slow-mo mechanisms. Be subtle and take your time with it because you only need tiny adjustments of a fraction of a turn to find the right level of friction and to take out any slack in the mechanism, but it's easy to do with a couple of 13mm spanners and makes a real difference to the smoothness and accuracy of the mount.

many thanks for the insight. its very useful and appreciated. looking forward to receiving mine now :)

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