Vixen GP2 Equatorial Mount and Tripod 3990HAL130
Item No. 705-02520
Eligible for Scope City Rewards at Check-out
Manuf. No. Vixen 3990HAL130
The Vixen Great Polaris 2 German equatorial mount is the acknowledged standard by which mid-priced equatorial mounts are judged. On the lightweight but sturdy Vixen #HAL110WT aluminum tripod, as it is here, the Great Polaris 2 represents an exceptional value for the serious astronomer on a budget.
A review in Sky & Telescope magazine said, "I measured the tracking error from gear inaccuracies to be approximately 20 arc seconds, and most of that was a gentle drift during 3 minutes of the 10-minute rotation of the worm gear. Mounts costing double the price of the GP do well if they match that figure, let alone beat it . . . perhaps the best mount on the market for under $1,000"
Another review, in The Backyard Astronomerıs Guide, Revised Edition, didnıt mince words and say ıperhaps the best mount;" they said bluntly "The Great Polaris is the best mount for under $1000."
Payload capacity: The Great Polaris 2 has a payload capacity of 15.4 pounds (7kg). This allows the use of most catadioptric and smaller reflector optical tubes, along with refractors up to about 4" in aperture.
Drive system details: The Great Polaris 2 has 144-tooth aluminum main drive gears in both right ascension and declination. To keep the periodic error that affects tracking accuracy in astrophotography to a minimum, the brass right ascension worm gear and the declination worm gear are precision machined to two micron (2/1000ths of a millimeter) tolerances for precise tracking of celestial motion. All right ascension and declination gears are individually inspected before assembly. Optional single and dual axis motor drives are available for no-hands tracking and guided astrophotography. Standard equipment covers for the optional motor drives keep dust and debris out of the motors for more trouble-free operation in dusty environments.
Mount weight: The Great Polaris 2 has an aluminum die-cast body thatıs built to be strong, yet light, to satisfy both stability and ease of portability needs. The complete mount, including standard equipment 8.2 pound counterweight and aluminum tripod, weighs only 28 pounds, making transportation and setup easy. Additional counterweights are recommended to balance payloads over 9 pounds.
Setting circles and slow motion controls: Right ascension and declination setting circles, used to help point the telescope at a celestial object by dialing in its coordinates, are optional with the Great Polaris E. Many observers prefer to star hop from object to object in any case, rather than use setting circles, so their absence may not be missed. Engraved metal circles can be added at any time. A manual slow motion control knob in right ascension and a rigid control shaft in declination are supplied for manual tracking and centering of objects. 12.5" flexible slow motion cables are available as an option should a very long focal length optical tube make the standard knob and shaft a little short for convenient use.
Polar finder and polar alignment: An optical polar finder is optional. A built-in latitude scale and single altitude adjustment handle allows the mount to be roughly aligned vertically on the celestial pole for casual observing. Standard twin adjustment knobs let you fine-tune the azimuth alignment on the pole over a +/-5ı arc. The mount is designed to operate in both northern and southern hemispheres at latitudes from 0ı (the equator) to 62ı (Central Canada, Northern Europe, and all of South America).
Tripod: The mountıs adjustable-height #HAL110WT 11 pound aluminum tripod is stable and rigid. The tripod legs adjust in length to put the top of the tripod between 25.25" and 38.75" above ground level, to allow the observer to place the focuser at a convenient observing height for most optical tube lengths or optical tube types. Should the tripod legs not have enough extension, however, an optional half pillar is available to fit between mount head and tripod to raise the telescope an additional 9 inches. An optional accessory tray is available to keep eyepieces and other accessories close to hand and out of the dew-laden grass. A built-in bubble level in the mount allows the mount to be quickly leveled for more accurate tracking by adjusting the length of the tripod legs independently.
Optical tube mounting method: The mount is equipped with a dovetail groove for installing telescope optical tubes. No dovetail plate is supplied to hold the optical tube, as the choice of dovetail plates is dependent on the optical tube to be installed. A variety of optional dovetail plates are available. Setup and takedown times are exceptionally fast, as a single large hand-tighten knob holds the optical tube and dovetail plate in place and adjusts the balance.
If youıre looking for a precision mount at a price that wonıt wreck your budget, take a careful look at the Vixen Great Polaris 2 mount on the #HAL110WT aluminum tripod. It is an economy mount in price only, not in performance.
- Precision Alignment Capability : High-quality equatorial mount for precise alignment of north/south celestial pole with the assistance of the built-in bubble level.
- Smoother Telescope Movements : Optional Single (SD-1) or Dual Axis (DD-1) motors controls right ascension or declination.
- Celestial North/South Alignment : Optional Vixen 6x20mm Polar Axis Scope with Illuminator helps home in on true north thereby assuring precise alignment.
- Added Convenience of Half Pillar: The optional Vixen Half Pillar is a 9 inches (23 cm) extension tube for telescope mounts providing increased observing comfort for observations near zenith when using long focal length telescopes.
- Rear Ascension and Declination Axes: Whole circle micro-movement.
- Rear Ascension Graduation and Declination Graduation : Optional.
- Rear Ascension Slow-Motion Control Knob and Declination Slow-Motion Control Knob:
- Attachable to either side, 2.5 inches (63.5mm) per revolution.
- Azimuth Adjustment : +/-5 degrees about 1 degrees per revolution of adjustment knob.
- Rear Ascension Shaft: Maximum diameter 62mm (2.4 inches).