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Old 30-03-2014, 02:48 PM
roughy (Mark)
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Focusers FLI PDF or FLI Atlas

With the recent sale of some items I'm in a position to seriously consider upgrading my Baader 3" Steel track and Steeldrive focuser.

Considering the following:

FLI PDF - 9kg capacity (I think), 10mm travel, 7000 steps at 1.25 microns

FLI Atlas - 11kg capacity, 8.8mm travel, 105,00 steps at 0.85 microns

My system operates at f3.8, not a lot of room before going out of focus.

At $1000 US price difference, in the US, I'm not sure the Atlas offers much over the PDF.

Any advice/views welcome.

Cheers

Mark
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Old 30-03-2014, 04:31 PM
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strongmanmike (Michael)
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Hi Mark, well ya know what I'm gunna say ...there should be no weak points and assuming you have the focuser base tube bracing (?) then the Atlas will give you piece of mind that your focuser-tube interface will never be the source of any flexure

By the way, how is the new scope going..??

Mike
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Old 30-03-2014, 04:48 PM
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Vote number 2 for the Atlas too. Excellent focusor and about the best you can buy easily.
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Old 30-03-2014, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roughy View Post
FLI Atlas - 11kg capacity, 8.8mm travel, 105,00 steps at 0.85 microns
Atlas step size is actually 0.085 microns. I have one. It's a little slow and noisy but it is incredibly precise, reliable and happy to handle a big heavy camera and I and love it

Cheers,
Rick.
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Old 30-03-2014, 05:51 PM
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Well I'll be the fly in the ointment. Atlas is no doubt a great focuser but its very pricey so I think you would want to use it when it matches the cost of the other items.

I used a FLI PDF extensively and it was flawless in its performance. I never had flex, always got precise focus and it just did its job.

I used it on a heavy FLI Proline on a Tak BRC250 and also with lenses, some other scopes as well.

Some imaging trains have gotten heavier since then so basic engineering would be to overengineer your weight carrying capacity by a multiple. Like overmounting a scope is better than mounting at or over its capacity for optimal results.

Some scopes are more sensitive to focuser flex than others as are cameras. Which camera and scope are you planning to use it on?


Greg.
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Old 30-03-2014, 06:16 PM
roughy (Mark)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strongmanmike;1069058

By the way, how [I
is[/I] the new scope going..??
Hi Mike - I really, really like it. Unfortunately daylight savings (not many hours of darkness at 43 degrees) and being manic at work for the last 5 or so months meant little use. I did have the focuser base braced. Just spent today sorting it all out again.
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Old 30-03-2014, 06:19 PM
roughy (Mark)
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Originally Posted by gregbradley View Post
Some scopes are more sensitive to focuser flex than others as are cameras. Which camera and scope are you planning to use it on?
Thanks Greg
QSI583wsg on an AG10. Nice compact and light camera. As far as the future goes I would surprise myself if I got anything heftier than the STT series from SBIG.
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Old 30-03-2014, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roughy View Post
Hi Mike - I really, really like it. Unfortunately daylight savings (not many hours of darkness at 43 degrees) and being manic at work for the last 5 or so months meant little use. I did have the focuser base braced. Just spent today sorting it all out again.
Ah, cool, I couldn't remember if you went with the focuser-tube bracing or not so that's great As Greg said, the PDF has been a great performer for many and may well be enough for your relatively light camera...ti's a 50/50 call really...should I or shouldn't I ...ooooh nervous decision

Look forward to your results

Mike
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Old 30-03-2014, 07:21 PM
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QSI583 is light. PDF should be fine.

You have to get the spacers right so the PDF (or Atlas) winds up halfway ready to go either way at focus so the focuser has some useable range.

Greg.
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Old 31-03-2014, 08:51 AM
roughy (Mark)
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Originally Posted by strongmanmike View Post

ti's a 50/50 call really
It is for sure. Bit of research to go. Having said that, the savings on the PDF would go a long way towards an ASA 1.8X Barlow, an idea I am still contemplating.
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Old 01-04-2014, 05:08 PM
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Atlas....You'll forget about the price after a remarkably short time....and over a much linger term will probably never want for another unit.
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Old 02-04-2014, 01:01 PM
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It is for sure. Bit of research to go. Having said that, the savings on the PDF would go a long way towards an ASA 1.8X Barlow, an idea I am still contemplating.
Hmm yes, that's true, the ASA barlow will work fine with the AG10 too ...yikes, an even harder decision now

Hmmm...actually maybe I should get an ASA Barlow

Mike
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