Category Equipment

First Light: Losmandy G11 Gemini 2 Mount

Losmandy g11 Gemini 2 Mount

After imaging for the past 2 years with a Celestron CG-5 Advanced GoTo Mount, I finally took the plunge and treated myself to a Losmandy G11/Gemini 2 mount that I happened upon on Astromart.  I actually was not in the market to buy one but I was actively looking and one Sunday back in April, I saw a local listing pop up and I had to seize the opportunity.  Luckily, the mount was located just 1/2 hour from my house so I met the seller and we closed the deal.  He showed me how to set it up and use it and I took it home that same day.

Flash forward to September 2014.  Realizing that the mount was going to be too heavy for me to simply haul out to the backyard, I needed to order a Scopebuggy.  After finally receiving the buggy, I was ready to assemble the G11, get it wired up, and test it out for its first light.

Losmandy g11 Gemini 2 Mount 3

My target for a test run was the Andromeda Galaxy and I remember the skies called for clouds so I quickly set up to test it out before the clouds rolled in.  One great aspect about the Gemini 2 system is that you can connect to it via an Ethernet cord so I was able to use the Astrotortilla program to plate solve and center the object so I could start imaging.  Initial tests of the mount via 10 minute sub exposures on the Andromeda Galaxy yielded very promising results.

Andromeda Galaxy First Light Losmandy G11

It was not until xxx 2014 where I had a true first light on a complete imaging session...

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ScopeBuggy Mini for a Losmandy G11 Mount

ScopebuggyMiniLosmandyG11

Back Story

I started out imaging deep space using a Celestron CG-5 Mount, which was an excellent starter mount. It was light, easy to set up, and was able to carry my Takahashi Sky90 refractor with ease.  As I got more experience imaging, I realized that I needed a second telescope to reach more distant galaxies and get up close to parts of Nebulae that were spectacular.  I purchased a used Celestron C9.25 and quickly realized my CG-5 mount was unable to carry the load.  I then went on the hunt for a Losmandy G11 mount and quickly found a local astronomer who was selling his.  Seizing the day, I drove over to meet him and I purchased a ‘like new’ Losmandy G11.

Enter the ScopeBuggy

Now having a Losmandy G11 mount in my possession, I calculated the weight of just the mount along and it came to 92 pounds.  I quickly figured out that this setup was going to be way too heavy for me to just simply haul outside so I went in search for a solution to this issue.  I came across the ScopeBuggy webiste and found the solution for me!  A ScopeBuggy is a specialized T-bar with large rubber wheels designed to make your astronomy equipment mobile.  What an ingenuous idea!  There are feet that the tripod legs securely sit on Scope Buggy and a nice handle to maneuver the rig around any obstacle.  It has a really nice turning radius too (if you are into that sort of thing like me).  The proof was in the putting at this point!  At first light, I wheeled the ScopeBuggy out to my backy...

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