Most Alt-Azimuth telescope mounts use shafts and bearing assemblies to allow the telescope to move freely. Counter balance weights, locks, and/or other means are then used to over come imbalance problems. How often have you removed an eyepiece, forgot to set the axis lock, resulting in the telescope crashing down? How often do you rebalance your telescope when you change eyepieces? How often have you tried to move the telescope with the locks on? How often have you tightened down on the friction to stop the scope from moving only to find out the telescope jumps around while trying to move it at high powers?
What if locks were eliminated? And what if the telescope could actually be focused at high power without the object dancing around!
What if friction is designed into the mount independent from the shaft and bearing, and made variable? What if the friction can be adjusted to meet the users needs? Want to change from a low power wide field two pound eyepiece to a two ounce high power eyepiece, without the telescope moving? Or remove the eyepiece and insert a camera and not lose balance, or have to hold the telescope, or lock the mount, and rebalance? The desire to eliminate locks, and use a wide range of eyepieces (or cameras) without the telescope moving, and to have a rigid and smooth operating mount at high powers was the goal for a new Alt-Azimuth mount. The patented Alt-Azimuth DiscMount is the result.
The DiscMount was designed with Patented Variable Friction Control along with a large friction disc. This allows the mount to be adjusted to accommodate large changes in eyepiece (or camera) weights. All that is needed is to adjust the mount to accommodate for the telescope configuration, and forget it.
Now let’s look at the DiscMount. First impression is the mount is very compact and looks like a solid cube. It is as rigid (at least almost) as being solid and has the added advantage of having a vibration damping material between the disc. In addition the telescope is mounted to the side of the mount. This allows the telescope to be mounted to the altitude axis disc (with proper rings, etc.) and also allows the telescope to rotate on both axes 360 degrees (depending on tripod legs, etc.).
If the back and top cover are removed three important things are noticed. The ends of the shafts are visible (if encoders are not installed), the two shafts are on the same plane, and there is a nut on each shaft.
If the optional Sky Commander is ordered, the position encoders are mounted on the ends of the shaft. Since the two shafts are on the same plane and move together, the battery powered Sky Commander becomes an integral part of the mount. No cables to tangle!
The DiscMount is extremely rigid, but moves smooth even at high powers.