Dick Locke's Astrophotography Equipment Page - 2017
Copyright 2017 by Dick Locke.  All Rights Reserved.  Contact and Image Use Information.

Many folks are interested in the equipment and techniques used to produce the astronomy pictures on my web site. My primary astronomy equipment page is here; the current page shows some of my current as of 2017 stuff.

Below are some setup pictures from my January trip to the Hill Country.  On this trip I figured out a way to connect a camera lens to the center of the mount, rather than attaching it to the top of a telescope as shown in the side-by-side mounting approach shown below.  This makes it much easier to balance everything.

January 2017 Imaging Setup

I have a Losmandy DUP 24 plate on to the Astro-Physics AP 900GTO mount, with two saddle plates on either end.  I really wanted to be able to securely mount a 3/8" stud and ballhead in the middle of all this, and finally figured out a way to do that.  I secured short DUP 7 plate to the middle section of the DUP 24 (see below), then an old camera mount to the plate. I had previously drilled and tapped the 1/4" to 3/8" and secured a stud to that.  That allows me to secure the ballhead of my choice securely, as I've had all sorts of problem with unwanted loosening and rotation given the heavy cameras and lenses I often use.

DSLR Mount Setup

This shows the Nikon D810A & 135mm lens secured to the ballhead I went with, namely a Acratech GV2 Ballhead/Gimbal Head.  There's a close-up of the head & mounting below.  The Acratech is a very lightweight head (3/4 lb) with easy positioning options, rated to hold 25 lb.  (It's not the weight that gets you, it's the ability to hold strange positions with lots of torque being applied.)  The camera has a RRS L-plate attached so that I can easily switch between landscape and portrait orientations if desired.  On the right of the camera you can see a white USB cable, and on the left you can see the power cable.

Acratech Close-up

Here's a close-up of the camera mount rig I came up with.


Guidescope, Tripod Head, and Imaging Scope

Ready to go except for the pesky clouds!  You see I have gone with a guidescope setup that allows me to mount a D plate camera adapter (like the one I've attached to the center) on top if desired.

Close to Sunset!

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