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TOA-130 and Losmandy GM-8

Started by rhranac, 04/10/2004 05:02PM
Posted 04/10/2004 05:02PM Opening Post
Anyone try using a TOA-130 on a GM-8 mount for VISUAL observing? Losmandy claims the GM-8 is good for 30 pounds. Clearly, astrophotography warrants something a lot heavier duty--the Tak EM-200, Losmandy G11, etc. But what about casual visual use? Thoughts?

Ron
Posted 04/11/2004 06:44AM #1
Ron,
I almost went to this setup. I had the chance to compare the TOA to an AP, both 130's. The TOA lost nothing to the AP optically (in my eyes), however, it seemed to really strain the limits of the GM8. I went for the AP solely based on the lighter weight. One of my observing buddies just bought a TOA and his is on an EM200 w/goto. His mount is very solid and exhibits no strain. Strain relates to stability and I only do visual, but would not have found the TOA/GM8 combination acceptable due to the shakes in focusing, and extended damping time. Others may have other opinions, this was my experience.
I ended up upgradng to a G11, and have since switched scopes and added an inch, along with a considerable weight gain.
The TOA is an excellent scope, just built like a tank. I like the baffling in the tube. Very impressive to look through as well as to look at!
Prior to the AP 130 f/6, I had a TMB 100 f/8 on this mount. I found it to work beautifully and to be a steady as a rock. The GM8 is a great mount when used under its' given load limitation. Both the 130 and the 100 were used with a 15lb counterweight. The TOA balanced with the 15 pounder, but it was at the extreme end of the c/w shaft, and a hefty EP seemed to throw the balance off quite easily. Hefty was a 2" TV 26 type 5.
It is do-able, just a bit shaky..
Roland C in So. Fla