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matt88

Sky-Watcher AZ3 Alt-Azimuth Mount

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Hey, I'm Just wondering if anyone is familier with the Sky-Watcher AZ3 Alt-Azimuth Mount. I've not long had my telescope which has this mount.

Im just wondering if i am operating the mount correctly. Here is the situation....

The azimuth movement is controled by a locking knob which you can untighten to allow azimuth movement left or right. Then there is a slow motion control which allows for small movement for centering objects.

The altitude doesnt have a knob that you can unscrew, all it has is a Bolt which when i first got the scope it was very tight and did not allow movement in the altitude. There is also a slow motion control cable which only allows for slight movement In altitude.

So what i did was untighten the bolt slightly which now allows movement in the altitude. Im just wondering if this is the correct way to operate it? Surely they cannot expect you to keep tightning and untighning the bolt with a spanner every time you want to change the altitude so i am sure this is the correct way to operate it but i just want to make sure.

Sorry if this is a stupid question but i am very inexperienced with scopes and mounts so just want to make sure i am doing everything correct as i dont want to break my mount.

here is a picture of the mount

AZ3 Alt-Azimuth Mount

Help and opinions would be appriciated. Thanks.

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Hi.

The AZ3 Mount can be quite frustrating,especially with the altitude adjustment.The trick is to tighten the bolt just enough so that you can easily operate the telescope in altitude setting,then switch to the slow motion to fine adjust.

The problems arise if your scope is fairly heavy,then what happens is your slow motion wont work,to bring the tube down because it is bottom heavy.To couteract this you tighten the nut until the slow motion works,then you find you cant easily move the telescope in alti tude,because the nut is to tight.Its a catch 22 situation,because the tube is top heavy.

You are operating the mount correctly.If these are your symptons,and you are fairly DIY handy,have a look at the web site.www.spacegazer.com(equipment,members mods,az3 mount.It may help.Regards.Mick.

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The AZ-3 is a good mount, but definately needs some work to set it up right out of the box. The trick is to position the telescope (whatever type) stlightly forward, as the centre of gravity is always going to be to the rear, and as the telescope is pointed upwards, that will become more so, resulting in a tendency for the scope to 'settle' backwards (and downwards).

The altitude knob should be adjusted so that the scope can be manhandled up and down with not too much difficulty, and the slow motions work ok too. It is a fine balancing act, as the tension required to hold the scope in place changes with the relative altitude angle of the scope (see the changing centre of gravity)!

My way of dealing with it is to add a counterweight bar to the front end, which makes the whole thing much more controlable and easy to use. Yes some DIY is required, but it's the only way to get the balance really right. Once done, it's a completely different beast and can be a delight to use.

My articles are here, if they help:

has | AZ-3 Mount Mod

has | AZ-3 Servicing

Hope this helps and that with perseverence the mount becomes more usable for you.

Ant

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agree with the above, the AZ3 is actually a good mount trying to get out from a slightly poor mount as delivered.

i've my c80 ed on one and as long as you have a slightly weight forward balance (either through scope position or a counterweight) its steady and holds its position.

one thing to watch for is that you dont run out of fine adjustment, get in the habit of winding back (especially the azimuth) after you've been tracking an object before you go to the next or you'll find yourself running out of fine adjustment at some point.

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On 26 augustus 2009 at 22:24, tinvek said:

agree with the above, the AZ3 is actually a good mount trying to get out from a slightly poor mount as delivered.

i've my c80 ed on one and as long as you have a slightly weight forward balance (either through scope position or a counterweight) its steady and holds its position.

one thing to watch for is that you dont run out of fine adjustment, get in the habit of winding back (especially the azimuth) after you've been tracking an object before you go to the next or you'll find yourself running out of fine adjustment at some point.

X

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Hi, i need a decent mount for the coronado pst solarscope. The scope is small and relatieve light ( about 2kg)  does the fine adustments works good to keep the sun centered for a while? Is this mount easy to set up? ( sorry if someone find it a " stupid" question but i just like to know for sure .) thanks!

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My astro society uses 2 PST's on AZ-3 mounts for outreach events. The slow motion adjustements do help to keep the Sun centered and to move it around the PST's "sweet spot" of highest contrast. The nature of the motions on the axis of the AZ-3 mount means that they need to be re-set periodically otherwise you run out of movement. This only takes a few seconds but it's something that you need to keep an eye on as you use the mount.

If you go for an AZ-3 for your PST you will need the photo adapter plate which will then provide a 1/4" screw to go directly into the base of the scope body. The Celestron version of the AZ-3 seems to come with this accessory as standard:

https://www.365astronomy.com/Celestron-Tripod-Heavy-Duty-Alt-Azimuth.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI4OSjiMXx1wIVw7ztCh21vQuWEAQYAiABEgJFCvD_BwE

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