Author Topic: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?  (Read 407 times)

asexdalo

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who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« on: December 26, 2017, 07:30:27 PM »
Anyone prefer a simple equatorial with R.A. drive over a goto and if so why?



globleferep

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2017, 06:14:53 AM »
Although I still have GOTO Mounts I've discovered I can do without them.
For Planetary viewing on an equatorial I only need/want tracking.
For DSO viewing I have found I can do without tracking and really enjoy "Push-To" using a Sky Commander and SkySafari.

Mike

Brandon Belknap

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2018, 12:20:18 AM »
I do. It's much simpler to set up and don't require electricity, which means less things to haul out and nothing to bog you down when it doesn't work. I just want convenient tracking or manual pushing along the RA axis.

Most GOTO mounts today also don't have setting circles, which I see as a major disadvantage, because you can use them for fairly accurate polar alignment in daylight. The setting circles on my Zeiss mounts are also accurate enough that I can mimick the functions of a GOTO (or push-to) mount, if I want to. Polar aligning with an accuracy good enough to reliably offset from a handfull of bright stars to basically anything in the sky takes only one or two minutes, once you get the hang of it. I simply aim the scope so that the RA (you'll need the sidereal time) and DEC circles read the position of Polaris, then turn and aim the entire mount and scope, until Polaris is in the middle of the field of the finderscope. That's it. It also works in daytime, if you use the position of the Sun instead.Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark

Adam Mann

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2018, 04:27:46 PM »
I do, for simplicity. I use a go-to eq only when I'm doing astrophotography or the occasional video assisted observing, almost always from home, where I'm not worried about batteries. For a brief period all I had was go-to, a Nexstar SE mount and CG-5 go-to. After going out to dark sites with go-to a couple times, I quickly found I enjoyed un-electrified astronomy muchmore. I really enjoy star-hopping, not having to worry about batteries, orgo-to alignment,and hearing the sounds of nature instead of the whir of a go-to motor, etc.

Lesego Dowdy

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2018, 01:23:22 AM »
I very much prefer manual mounts to GOTO mounts..

That said, I did replace a manual CG-5 with a GOTO CG-5. My reason was that the drives on manual CG-5 were slow and sloppy, the CG-5 ASGT has responsive drives so that when I put the button, something happens. I use it in the EQ-North mode, it tracks but NO GOTO.

My ideal equatorial mount would have an RA drive with slip clutches and manual slow motion controls on both axes. It is my understanding that this is possible with the Losmandy G-8 but most EQ mounts one needs to use the drive to slew. My EQ-3, I removed the DEC drive, no need to that, a slow motion control is superior..

And then there is the Equatorial Platform for Dobsonians. You retain the essential simplicity of the Dob but add tracking.. the best of both worlds..

Jon

plicoptorol

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2018, 01:13:02 PM »
While I enjoy the aspects of goto and tracking I started in this hobby many, many years ago using a 6" F/6 Cave Astrola with no drive. Everything was done by learning the sky, using paper charts and star hopping. I later added a drive to that mount. Now I've got several mounts of various types but with imaging a goto system is almost mandatory.

asagnata

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2018, 12:29:12 PM »
I spent 1961 through 2002 without a GoTo mount. That said, once I got one, I knew I would never want to go back to manual, any more than I want to go back to a pre-smartphone world.

I actually tried a grab-n-go (ED80 on Vixen Porta II) three years ago, but the appeal of GoTo overcame the simplicity and quick setup of the alt-az configuration, so it sat in the closet.

Mario Carpenter

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #7 on: January 25, 2018, 05:43:31 PM »
I bought an isostatic equatorial mount from Roger Tuthill over 20 yrs ago and thats what I'm still using. It works for me.

Cameron Artist

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2018, 11:46:46 PM »
I built my first scope on a pipe mount in 1954. I didn't get a driven mount until about 1958. I still use that mount and scope for most of my visual work nearly 60 years later. For visual or planetary photography I've never needed more. I just roll it out from an unheated garage, estimate it is pointed north and am up and running. Using that mount in 1984-1985 I averaged 4 minutes to find and record each of the 400 objects in the Herschel 400 program. I doubt a go-to would have sped it up at all and likely slowed me down with the setup time required. I used it even for DSO imaging for decades using film. Then, due to the need for exact polar alignment setup did take 20 to 30 minutes.

It wasn't until age and arthritis and the demise of 2415 film made me move to a remote observatory and digital cameras for my imaging 11 years ago that I went with a robotic go-to system. Again no set up needed as the permanently mounted Paramount and The Sky always knows where it is after a few seconds when first turned on and it moves to its "home" position. Since I now image mostly things well below naked eye visibility such a system is pretty much required. But when neighbors come by to see the sky its back to the 10" f/5 Newtonian on the driven mount from the 50's (original high PE Cave drive replaced with a far superior Byer's AC drive 35 years ago). The simplicity makes visual work far more pleasing for this old geezer.

Rick

szenawahle

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2018, 12:16:17 AM »
Well, I'm not a GoTo fan, but find EQs a pain for visual, just don't like weight lifting either. I miss the old fork mounted SCTs

Tyler King

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Re: who prefers a simple non goto equatorial?
« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2018, 01:37:05 AM »
When doing visual I enjoy non goto more because star hopping gives you so much more to soak in and enjoy, but that assumes decent setting circles. For imaging, no way. Imaging time is just too valuable to waste on trying to find and center the target. And I prefer to do all that inside my house looking at a bright monitor.