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meade model 4501


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#1 oldjimbo

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 11:32 AM

I have an older meade model 4501 telescope. It has an equatorial mount and I want to know if there is any way I can attach a drive motor to the ra axis and/or the dec axis. I called the Meade customer service number and they said there isn't any way to upgrade this telescope to Autostar because this is a discontinued model. Has anyone found a way to do this?

#2 MistrBadgr

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 01:46 PM

If there are shafts sticking out of both sides for hooking up knobs for manual slow motion control, there is a little electronic rig that I bought one time from Hands On Optics that you might be able to attach. Possibly a little creativity might be involved in getting it to fit up.

Is the 4501 a 4.5 inch long tube reflector?

Bill Steen
Bill Steen, Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

#3 oldjimbo

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 09:50 PM

Yes, telescope is 4.5 inch tube reflector. There are shafts sticking out of both sides for manual slow motion control.

#4 MistrBadgr

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Posted 07 January 2014 - 07:23 PM

A couple of things:

I have an e4, which is a fairly substantial equatorial mount for up to a six inch reflecor. I bought the little six volt system that has slow motion buttons on a simple box as well as the ability to track the eq mount across the sky. I cannot remember for sure, but I think that cost me around $100. I bought mine from Hands On Optics, but I am sure other vendors can probably get one for you, if you have a favorite.

Another option is an AutoStar mount with the 2114 mount ring on it. I have had long tube 4.5 inch scopes on those before and it worked well. The heavier scope on it has a few caveats. (1) It will wiggle more than the shorter tube scope, but does not pose a serious problem. (2) On the regular DS 2000 tripod with the snap locks on the legs instead of thumb screws, the snap locks have failed a couple times, the scope crashes to the ground and snaps the altitude shaft in the mounts arm.....scratch one DS mount....no practical repairs....unless you are a master aluminum welder.

I started putting C clamps on the lower legs, just under the lower end of the upper leg section to keep the lower leg from sliding into the upper leg. I have considered sticking a four inch fence post in the middle of my yard, cut off to a convenient length, with the right size bolt installed into the top. Then, I could simply screw on the DS mount, clamp the optical tube into the mount ring. When done, take the scope off, and stick a five gallon bucket over the mount and go inside.

Meade originally sold both 4.5 and 5 inch true f/8 reflectors on the DS-2000 mounts. I am thinking they stopped due to the tripod issues. All they sell in the way of reflectors with the mount now are the short versions that mimic the optical characteristics of the long tube scopes. The long tube scope design is better optical performer, at least in theory.

The latest version (white) of the DS mount can be purchased on eBay through Telescope Warehouse (scopehed1) and probably other suppliers. If you call or email Bill Vorce who owns Telescope Warehouse (scopehed@frontiernet.net) and ask about a mount ring for your 4.5 inch scope, he can most likely fix you up. I am sure there are others on eBay that can do this, but Bill Vorce is the person that comes first to my mind. You will also need a controller handset for such a mount. The 494 handset works just fine. It just does not have the bells and whistles of the 497 or AudioStar Handsets, but does not cost as much. The 497 and AudioStar handsets can be hooked up to a computer, with the right cable, and can be updated when/if a new program version comes out. The 494 does not have enough memory for that, but it seems to work just fine with no upgrades.

Hope this helps,

Bill Steen
Bill Steen, Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

#5 jrcrilly

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 08:31 AM

Bill Vorce (mentioned above) may well have the original motor set available for that mount.




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