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  The Compact Equatorial Platform
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    Cordless Slew Control
    Polar Alignment Tool
    Built-in Battery
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 CloudyNights Review
 Owners Speak Out
 Customer Comment of the Month    Updated 03/23/09 

 Astrophotography with a Platform
 MallinCam Imaging
 Image of the Month Updated 04/2//09



Equatorial Platforms
Phone/Fax 530-274-9113


Visits Since March 1999

Remote Control Slew


Owners of the Dual-axis Platforms will especially like this accessory. Imagine a small wireless push button pad that you can slip into your pocket and use to slew your scope. No more long wires dangling down from the eyepiece to the Platform, getting in the way of ladders and winding around the telescope.

This Cordless Remote is about the size of a key chain car opener. It comes with 5 buttons. The four outer buttons control the direction of movement of the telescope. The middle button allows the user to toggle back and forth between the slow speed slew (used for fine guiding a photographic exposure) and the fast slew (handy for centering an object at high power and for scanning an area.) Unlike the stock hand control, this new Cordless Remote just requires pushing one button for the fast slew. Very convenient!

Included with the Remote is a small electronics box that easily plugs right into the control panel of the Platform. The whole package is priced at $280.00

Here is a review of the Remote Slew Control written by renowned visual viewer, Howard Banich:

"I was lucky enough to have been a beta-tester for the cordless hand controller and was able to test it for two months of observing in varying conditions in the Pacific Northwest. I've had the standard hand controller for a little over two years and found I was using it less and less because I didn't want to mess with the cord. As soon as I tried the cordless version I was hooked. I could control the most minute movement of the scope while holding the key-chain sized cordless hand controller in my pocket. I particularly like the center button function that enables each direction button to be toggled to either a fast slew or a slow slew. This beats having to press two buttons to get a fast slew as on the original hand controller. This translated to using the cordless hand controller for most of my observations - essentially any time I had the magnification over 200x on my 20" f/5 I used the unit. The higher the magnification the most useful it became. The most extreme example of this was on one exceptionally steady night at Steens Mountain, Oregon when I was able to use 1250x on the Ring Nebula. The Ring nearly filled the field of view at this magnification and the cordless hand controller not only made centering the nebula a snap, but it was also great fun to sweep along the perimeter of the nebula to soak in the subtle details. Galaxy clusters were just as much fun - slewing from one galaxy to the next while keeping my hands in my pockets was a blast. Two other nice features was not having to worry about stepping on the long cord of the original controller (done that a couple of times) and not having to wind up and put away the cord when breaking down the scope for the night. I only unplugged the power to the receiver, put the controller in my observing vest pocket and they were ready to go for the next observing session.

To say I'm sold is an understatement."

Howard Banich