Friday, 11 May 2012

How to balance a telescope

Well it's been over a month and I still haven't been able to do any more observing :( but as the rain is clearing I hope to be able to do some in the next couple of days. So I have decided to make another guide, this one is on how to balance a telescope. Balancing your telescope is important if you want it to hold its position and not slip while you are viewing an object, also if your telescope is really badly balanced then it could in extreme cases topple over. You will need to rebalance your telescope every time you attach or dispatch a piece of equipment to it. The first step in balancing your telescope is to loosen the r.a axis so that the telescope tilts one way or another, you then need to slide your counter weights along the bar until counter weight bar is horizontal while doing this it is important to make sure that the counter weight bar is over one of the tripod legs and not between them otherwise your scope could topple over. The next step is to balance the declination axis, to do this you first need to loosen the screw on your declination axis. Then you need to carefully loosen the dovetail attachment on your scope and slide the tube until it stays horizontal, then you need to tighten the dovetail attachment. Now if you release both clutches (loosen the screws) tour telescope should stay pretty much perfectly in the position you put it in, it might still need a tad more adjustment. Your telescope should now be balanced, therefore it should make your observing easier. I hope you found my guide on how to balance a telescope useful, if you need any more advice or have any problem feel free to contact me.
Below is a video showing what your telescope should be like when corrclty balanced. BTW I am putting the telescope into a position then letting it go.

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