Astro Physics 1200GTO German Equatorial Mount
Ever since its introduction in 1998, the Astro Physics 1200GTO German Equatorial Mount has acquired a reputation for both tracking and pointing accuracy, that is so essential to casual visual observation as well as advanced imaging.
With the advent of the CCD camera, amateurs are exploring the skies to an ever increasing level of precision, easily exceeding the image quality of large observatories using film techniques decades ago.
This new level puts a higher demand on the precision of the equatorial mounting. Many of the finest imagers today have been using these GTO mounts as a solid platform for a wide variety of instruments.
Until the introduction of the 3600GTO at the Advanced Imaging Conference in 2007, the largest of these was the 1200GTO.
A large number of 1200GTO and 900GTO mounts can be found at Mount Pinos in California, a favorite observing site of many advanced photographers and imagers. You will find them at star parties and in observatories all over the world.
These mounts are truly a marvel of engineering, having maximum strength and rigidity with minimum weight. CNC lathes and mills carve out the excess material in both axes of the 1200 and 900 German equatorials while retaining a heavily ribbed structure for internal strength and rigidity.
A unique dovetail was machined into the mating surfaces of the R.A. and Dec axes. This feature allows quick and easy assembly in the field without any tools.
The 1200 equatorial is equally at home in a permanent observatory or as a portable mounting for remote star parties thanks to the ease with which the two axes come apart.
This is the perfect mount for a large refractor, Newtonian, Cassegrain or astrograph. Telescopes commonly used include Astro-Physics 155-206mm refractors, 12-14" Schmidt-Cassegrains and 10-16" Ritchey-Chretiens and other instruments of similar size.
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