The original and the best.
The Losmandy Univsersal plates are the heart of the Losmandy Secondary System. 0.5" x 4.0" x length of the tube assembly. The dovetail plates, like all accessories in the Losmandy line, are machined for lightness and rigidity from aluminum stock, then black anodized for a tough, corrosion free surface.
Click here for hole pattern
Click here for hole pattern
6kg and 4kg stainless steel counterweights with 30mm bore for GM1000 and AValon Linear mount and any other mount using a 30mm outside diameter counterweight shaft.
The Altair SkyShed Pier is a revolutionary design. It's made of rock solid 6mm thick powder coated steel, and is height adjustable from 37-42 inches - which is the optimum size range for small or large SCT's, or long refractors on an EQ mount. Now with free UK delivery.
Why a pier? It's ultra-stable, and you don't have to keep re-aligning your telescope mount every time you use it. It can be quickly and conveniently moved if you move observing locations, and it's a must-have if you have an observatory, creating loads of space around the telescope - no more bumping into tripod legs in the dark, and ruining a good imaging run.
Why the Altair/SkyShed Pier design? It's the easiest pier to install, period, and the special adjustable pier-head saves you set-up time. Pier levelling and rotation can be adjusted AFTER installation on the base! (This is the most innovative pier on the market and the first to sport this feature). It's for customers who appreciate a good quality finish, and a nicely made product due to laser cut steel, and a beautiful gloss "automative grade" powder coated finish. No spraypaint, no drips, no single coat spraypaint finish which will chip off and corrode, and no slapdash welding.
What's the benefit of post-installation adjustment? The pier head can be locked in any position, at any time. That means there's no need for perfect North alignment of the base bolts, and even if you get the base levelling slightly wrong, you can still ensure your mount is perfectly upright and aligned North/South. That means you don't have to be a DIY expert to install it!
What comes in the box? We provide you with a plywood template for the base and L-bolts and nuts, if you're going to pour your own concrete. (Click on the image for step by step photos). If you want to install the pier on an existing flat surface, we provide 4x straight bolts instead. All you'll need is a drill and a tube of builder's epoxy to complete installation.
How do I attach my telescope? The pier is pre-drilled with 6x holes which fit our CNC machined aluminium Pier adapters for the Celestron CG5, Skywatcher EQ5, HEQ5, EQ6 German equatorial mounts (click on the image, or click the Related products tab below). Installing a mount and adapter takes a few minutes. You can also easily drill the 13" dia. top plate with a normal drill with metal bit, to accommodate your Meade or Celestron Wedge, a Losmandy Pier adapter. Finally, you can bolt certain mounts directly to the top plate, such as some Astro Physics mounts.
**Please note there is a delivery charge for this item. Please contact for delivery quote**
•A original and innovative design!
•Free UK delivery (except for northern Scotland, which attracts a £30 additional fee).
•Can be adjusted in levelling and rotation AFTER installation.
•8 inches in diameter adjustable in height from 36-38 inches (optimum size range for small or large SCT's, or long refractors on an EQ mount).
•6mm Powder Coated steel throughout for extreme rigidity, yet relatively light weight.
•Powder coated laser-cut steel for a crisp finish. (Another first).
•Large, flat 13" Dia baseplate, for easy access to the base bolts, with four perimeter fins.
•4x massive 16mm bolts support the top pier plate.
•Pre-drilled for classic Meade and Celestron Fork mounts.
•Adapters available for most mounts, CGEM, EQ6, HEQ5, even EQ5.
(Search for "pier adapter EQ6" for example).
•Suitable for up to 14" Cassegrains and heavy duty mounts. (Call for larger custom sizes).
•Hole in base and cap for neater hidden power cables.
•Perfect for any observatory, including the Skyshed POD.
•Can be filled with sand (in bags) to dampen vibration even further.
•We provide "L-bolts" if you're pouring concrete, or "straight" bolts, enabling you to drill holes in an existing surface - such as a concrete pad. Just let us know which you prefer.
•Can be shortened easily if needed - just cut the top off the tube with a bandsaw or plasma cutter. Your local metal shop or even garage can do it in minutes. Alternatively, place a special order with us.
•L-Bolts or straight bolts included.
•Usually in stock in standard length.
•A crisp, tough high quality powdercoated finish, with neat welds, which will last many, many years.
•The SkyShed/Altair pier is the worlds best selling pier design. Over 6 years in production, much imitated, never equalled.
The Altair TMS Ultra Light Guide Scope Rings are available in 120mm or 150mm sizes. They have a lightweight design unique to Altair Astro, which results in a far lighter guide scope ring, while still maintaining strength and rigidity.
The Altair TMS uses durable all stainless steel M8 threads - that means they will not corrode, unlike cheaper makes which use low grade blackened steel threads and screws, which eventually go brown with rust. The Altair Telescope Mounting System (TM) is more durable than any other product on the market we've seen.
This new Clear Silver colour goes well with any telescope, is arguably easier on the eye than black, and goes very nicely with our blue hardware range. Sure, telescopes are meant to be used in the dark - but there's no harm in your setup looking attractive too! A full Altair Telescope Mounting System is a thing to behold!
Check out this customer review of the earlier non-lightweight Altair TMS Guide Scope Rings (opens new window).
Direct bar or plate mounting: The Altair Guide Scope Rings are unique (at least at the time we write this) because they can be mounted on the top or bottom of Altair Losmandy-format or Vixen-format bars via two M6 bolts on each ring, to stop them twisting like other makes with single bolts. All Altair TMS Losmandy plates or Vixen bars have this two-hole pattern, and you can adjust the separation of the rings by choosing different holes along the length of the plate. GSR rings have flattened edges for good contact with the bar or plate they're fastened to and are far more rigid than any other guidescope rings we have seen to date.
Direct clamp mounting: GSR rings can also be mounted on Altair TMS Small Vixen Clamps or Losmandy Saddle Plates to slide back and forth to achieve the best balance. This is perfect for Altair Astro RCs and Meade and Celestron SCT telescopes with an inverted rail on top. (see picture below)
The GSR benefits from easy-grip hard anodised knobs, custom-machined for a positive grip (we tested several iterations). They are very easy to un-tighten and adjust, even with gloves on.
Each thread has a plastic end cap to give a more forgiving contact with your optical tube without causing movement. This is better than soft rubber end caps, which change compression with temperature and cause movement, often splitting after a year or so of use.
Altair TMS is made in the UK at our local machine shop on HAAS CNC milling machines, which means we have complete control over quality. Each part is hand polished before anodising to remove burs and give a smooth finish. The quality level and material means a slightly higher price than budget rings. Recommended for those who want the best.
The Astrolift 150 is a motorised lifting pier manufactured and assembled by HiTec Astro.
The pier has a maximum load bearing capacity of 150kg.
Minimum and maximum useable heights are 70cm and 110cm. The unloaded pier weighs 22kg.
The Lifting Pier 150 ships with a Universal Pier top that accepts the following mounts directly
In addition It will also accept the Altair Multi Mount Pier Adaptor and EQ8 Pier Adaptors.
The Lifting Pier ships with a mains to 12v power supply.
the bottom plate has 4 radius corners to help with plar alignment after the pier has been afixed to the observatory floor.
The USP is a heavy duty saddle plate which is designed to replace the factory clamps on equatorial mounts with a more rigid and precise alternative for imaging or visual use with heavier telescopes. It's not only easier to use, it's also safer and stronger than the factory clamps you get with your mount. The Altair USP is compatible with both the Vixen/Synta-format telescope mounting bars, or the Losmandy-format wider mounting plates. This all-in-one design means you don't have to change clamps for different telescopes, making your mount more compatible.
The USP fits most medium sized equatorial mounts on the market including the iOptron iEQ45, Losmandy G11 and the Skywatcher EQ6, Orion USA Atlas or Skywatcher HEQ5. The Universal Saddle Plate or "USP" is also compatible with the rest of the Altair TMS Telescope Mounting System accessory range.
This is the black anodized version of the Altair USP, and it goes very well with any colour of mounting hardware, including silver and blue.
Altair Heavy Duty USP Features:
Compatible with Losmandy-wide-format dovetail plates, and Vixen-narrow-format doevtail bars. Very precisely machined.
Safe and easy "tip in" saddle lets you place your telescope quickly and easily from the side, while tightening up the clamps with your other hand. This avoids that awkward struggle in the dark, while you try to hold onto a damp slippery telescope, while carefully lining up a saddle plate which will only slide in from the very end. This design feature is now much-copied and is based on feedback and requests from several customers who have nearly dropped their telescopes!
Chamfered and rounded edges make it even easier to get a heavy telescope placed securely, before tightening the clamps with your other hand.
Heavy duty hard anodised star knobs, custom-machined for a positive grip with or without gloves.
The clamp has machined guides for a positive lock.
No sharp edges or poor machining.
The heavy duty spring loaded Stainless Steel M8 threads do not corrode.
Looks great in hard anodised "Altair Blue" to match the rest of the TMS range.
Readily available, and made locally in the UK at our machine shop on HAAS 4 axis CNC milling machines. That means we have complete control over quality.
The new Altair Astro CNC machined aluminium pier adapter is used to secure the following Equatorial mounts to your Altair SkyShed Pier:
Altair Sabre mount
Skywatcher EQ6 (AKA Orion Atlas)
Celestron CG-5 & CG-4
Generic Chinese EQ5 mounts such as "Astro-5 EQ" mount
Meade LXD75 (due to mount model variations, please email us to confirm dimensions)
Several Vixen mounts (due to mount variations, please email us to confirm dimensions)
Other mounts: The pier adapter also fits several other mounts including those made by Meade and Vixen Japan, however we request you email us dimensions so we can confirm because there are some variations in these mounts depending on the year of manufacture.
The pier adapter has four recessed holes around the outer perimeter for fastening it to the pier plate in various positions.
The pier adapter is designed to add 32mm height to the mount in order to clear the pier top plate.
4x corrosion resistant stainless steel bolts and nuts are included with your pier adapter for quick and easy installation. The pier adapter is clear silver anodised.
Using the Azimuth (rotation) stop for each type of mount:
You'll notice a "stop bolt" protruding from your equatorial mount field tripod. This is to provide something for the azimuth rotation adjustment screws to push against for fine adjustment, and polar alignment. (Some older CGE and EQ-5 mounts also have a cast metal "nub" which protrudes from the tripod head).
There is an additional threaded hole for the EQ6 azimuth stop bolt which protrudes from the field tripod. If you do not intend on using your mount and tripod in the field very often, you can just unscrew the azimuth stop bolt on your tripod, and screw that into the pre-threaded hole on the adapter.
You can also use your own M8 bolt instead of the bolt from your tripod. This will not affect your mount performance.
Product feature summary:
Transfer your EQ mount from static pier to field tripod in minutes.
CNC machined from solid aluminium, anodised to ensure corrosion protection.
4x corrosion resistant stainless steel nuts & bolts are included.
Fits the Altair/SkyShed 8” Steel Adjustable Pier without any drilling.
The existing hole pattern on Altair Piers is the same as the Meade LX200.
The Altair pier adapter be used on any flat surface with the correct holes, such as a home made pier of your own.
Pleasing to the eye in anodised aluminium, complementing the crisp lines of the laser-cut 8” Altair-SkyShed Pier and the Altair TMS product range.
The Altair Vixen-format dovetail bars are narrow and light - the perfect option for small telescopes, for example a refractor of up to about 102mm or 4" aperture.
To mount two small telescopes with Vixen-format dovetail bar side-by-side, we recommend the Altair TMS "Small Vixen Dovetail Clamp" which is designed to bolt directly onto either end of our Vixen (or Losmandy) bars and plates with two bolts, giving maximum rigidity and strength. (If you order clamps with your bars, we'll include all the stainless steel bolts you need).
Optical tube separation: When using the 180mm Vixen-format dovetail bar to mount two optical tubes "side-by-side", they will have a centre to centre separation of 160mm. When using the 250mm Vixen-format dovetail bar you'll get 230mm centre to centre separation.
A countersunk M6 hole at each end, plus a countersunk centre M6 slot, allows maximum compatibility for attachment to most telescope tube rings on the market today.
Precision CNC machined locally, and hard black anodized for extra resistance to tarnishing or scratching. Altair TMS is a precision machined modular Telescope Mounting System. Our aim is to provide a simple, safe and rigid mounting system for most types of telescope on the market, to give our customers the best possible results for astro imaging and visual observing. All components can be re-used which makes the overall cost of ownership very cost effective in the loing run. Made from the highest grade British aerospace 6068 T6 tempered and artificially aged aluminium, which has the highest strength in the 6000 series alloy range and is extremely corrosion resistant. All threads are stainless steel, and dovetail clamps are spring loaded with teflon washers.
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