View Full Version here: : Need drive advice for an old Samson mount
13-07-2012, 10:20 PM
I have an Astro Optical Samson mount, bought way back in 1987. Problem is I never got a motor drive for it. I did get the slomo controls which have limited travel.
Would you believe I actually did film astrophotography with this setup for a number of years with the RA axis being driven with a toy motor and gearbox. This setup no longer cuts the mustard with digital. Why does everything need to be 10X more accurate with digital? :rolleyes:
Anywho, are there any dual axis drive options for this mount available these days? Or do I retire it and get something new.
I don't necessarily want "goto". I'm so old school I wouldn't know what to do with it anyway. :P
13-07-2012, 10:27 PM
nope it would have to be custom made, is there a pickie of the mount?
13-07-2012, 10:59 PM
This is him.
The axis shafts look quite beefy compared to present day Skywatcher mounts.
Edit, just found this. http://www.campingunderstars.com/equip.html
13-07-2012, 11:40 PM
whats the dia of the shafts? there are options depending on how much you can do yourself or how much you want to spend. There are still a lot of these out there and working well. I have one with someones drive on it but I dont remember whos drive it is :(
14-07-2012, 01:37 AM
Each shaft is 1.25 inch steel. I'm a wood worker not a metal machinist so not really much I can do myself.
At this stage I just want to shoot with my ED80 and maybe 6" scope. I don't really want to spend that much getting the old mount going, unless I get back into big scopes. If I can get an RA drive motor and controller though that would be a start. I put off getting one originally because the cost of the motor / controller setup was about as much as the mount itself.
14-07-2012, 07:37 AM
Aaahhh that takes me back. I had one of them back in the mid/late 80s too. Great mount! I had the RA drive and drive corrector though (but didn't always use it).
Have you contacted Astro Optical to see if they know of a suitable drive?
The Argo on Paul Mayo's would be the way to go for optical, but it isn't a tracking drive.
14-07-2012, 10:24 AM
I have one of these old beasts also - with the drive on RA. I find it tracks well - certainly well enough for lunar and planetary imaging if that's your thing.
It has the fine control on dec and also a small rocker gear that allows a quick back.forward on RA if needed. It os set up for an OTA in the 10-12 inch range.
These things have a massive carrying capacity - mine happily lugged 40Kgs around.
But I don't use it any more and don't expect I ever will. So I am happy to pass it on to a good home - send me a PM and we can discuss.
14-07-2012, 09:08 PM
We have an old meade starfinder eq with ra, the things built like a tank and love it. It's pretty much impossible to find a megellan computer and dec drive for it these days so i would think it would be best to move on or take up peters offer if you want a nice planetary mount. We are keeping ours for that purpose as its one hell of a great mount for that use and can pack a 12" with ease.
15-07-2012, 01:09 AM
Unfortunately I want to do deep sky so will have to look for something new I guess.
15-07-2012, 10:21 AM
they will do deepsky, attached is a Paul Mayo/AOS 8"/Sampson mount photo , give it a go ?
15-07-2012, 10:44 AM
True that, lol all my wifes images have being done on our starfinder with just RA. Only problem is shorter subs and more of them to get the job done, getting around 10 secs on a bad alignment and 15-20 on a good one.
15-07-2012, 12:46 PM
Been doing that. I make do with what I've got. And if I shrink them down to a small size I can almost get away with it... But it sounds like my present gearbox is about worn out. And I want to do filtered deep sky with an unmodded DSLR. I need 3 minute subs at F5 which is what these shots are. The drive inaccuracies though make the system so difficult to manage. After an hour of this, I'm stuffed!
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