Astro-Physics Traveler
and
TeleVue Gibraltar

Astro-Physics Traveler
The 105 mm f6 TRAVELER EDT REFRACTOR is the perfect telescope of observing on the go. It's small size (19") allows it carried in case that is airline carry-on legal. Its outstanding optics gives the best (or better) images of any telescope in its size range. These facts combined with the two year delivery time for new Travelers make this particular telescope one of the most "wanted" telescopes in the world. As of November 1997, there were only about 400 of these fine telescopes have been delivered.


TeleVue Gibraltar
The TeleVue Gibraltar is a very sturdy alt-azimuth mount for telescopes of the Traveler size. Alt-azimuth mounts, unlike equatorial mounts, are not aligned to the earth's axis or rotation; therefor, the operator must continuously push the telescope to keep it aligned on an object. If the mount is not sturdy, the telescope will vibrate every time it moved. If the altitude and azimuth bearing are not designed well, the telescope will not move smoothly when pushed. The Gibraltar is can be set up to not vibrate and can be adjusted to have smooth motion. The key is in the balance of the telescope on the mount.

The telescope is balanced by moving it back and forth on the mount. For any given altitude there is one and only one spot for perfect balance. As you move away from that spot, balance become poorer. In practical terms, there are only about two balance points needed for viewing most of the sky. On good point is at about 45 degrees elevation and the other is at about 75 degrees. In order to be able to achieve balance at these points, the operator must be able move the telescope backwards and forwards on the mount. The TeleVue telescope mounting hardware provides for this needed movement. The mounting hardware supplied by Astro-Physics for the Traveler makes this movement on the Gibraltar impossible. This is why you hear of so many Traveler (and other telescope) owners complaining of the Gibraltar mounts. For this particular Traveler, the problem was solved by using Losmandy "C" plates and clamps and some wooden planks for mounting. You can click on the upper image to get a good look at this custom mounting.

Once the telescope is balanced vibrations should be minimal. All remaining vibrations can be virtually eliminated by using the Celestron Anti-Vibration pads.

When the telescope is at its balance point, the elevation can both be lose and the telescope will remain pointed. As you move up or down from this balance point one of the screws should be tightened almost enough to keep the telescope pointed. The final holding tension is then set by tightening or loosening the other screw while observing.


Digital Setting Circles

This particular Gibraltar is equipped with 2160 count encoders for digital setting circles and with a JMI NGC Max DSC computer.



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