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Solar mount options?


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Hi all,

I'm slowly assembling my solar setup, and the final piece of the jigsaw is the mount. I'd like something I can set up and take down in my lunch hour if possible.

I don't have the luxury of a permanent set up, so at the moment I'm looking at the iOptron minitower pro, which, being alt-az, avoids the need for polar alignment. It is expensive though, so I'm wondering if there are better (and cheaper) options.

My other criteria are that it's got to be able to track heft at least a 6" refractor, and ideally a smaller scope as well.

Any suggestions?

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Polar alignment isn't an issue if you can mark positions for the tripod legs. You don't need to be accurate for solar work ... Another method, if your mount allows the sun as an alignment object, is to level the tripod head, do a dummy align, tell the scope to slew to the sun then use the altitude & azimuth alignment screws to centre the sun in the scope.

Sorry but I very much doubt the Minitower Pro would be adequate for a 6" frac. Whatever the specs say, the useful capacity in terms of vibration settling time is less than e.g. the HEQ5 Pro, which just about copes with my FLT 110 + SF-100 if the wind is reasonably light. EQ6?

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Useful info, thanks Brian. EQ6 would have been my first choice, but I thought alignment would be a big issue. Never considered marking the ground to set up the legs. Simple and effective. I owe you one!

Edited by hunterknox
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