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Novice Challenge

Damping down time HEQ5

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A whole range of factors combine to determine vibration suppression time. Setting up on the garden lawn can be better than the concrete patio, being under mounted (telescope too heavy and in particular too long and heavy -easier to mount a short heavy scope than a long heavy scope even if they are the same weight), everything that needs to be not tightened down sufficiently etc, all contribute to experienced vibrations.


That all being said, an acceptable time to dampen down from adjusting focus really should be a second or two maximum for any set up. An accidental kick of the tripod in the dark (we have all done it) would be a little longer.


Vibration suppression pads under the tripod legs can reduce vibration time by as much as 50%.

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Posted (edited)

I hate wobbly scopes on wobbly mounts, it's so frustrating but is also completely unnecessary. A good rule of thumb, that I think works well, is to take the published specs with a pinch of salt and aim to load the mount with 50% of what it is supposed to carry (66% max). That way the mount will be under zero stress, be allowed to do it's job efficiently and your scope will not dance around every time you touch the focuser.

The imaging crew  recommend this approach as well and for obvious reason. Visual users should do the same because there is no point in having high quality optics and not mounting them on a firm foundation. An undermounted scope will not be able to perform to it's true potential.

Edited by Franklin
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You also need to consider the FL of the scope you are using. I use an HEQ5 pro to image with an RC8, but that is it's limit. My mount has been disassembled and rebuilt with belts, new bearings and grease and now has low backlash and is about as good as can be expected. When used for visual use below about 1000mm FL refractor  the settling time is virtually zero. Overloaded might be another story.

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