[PLUG-TALK] azimuth/elevation mount construction

Russell Senior seniorr at aracnet.com
Mon Aug 14 21:48:03 PDT 2006

>>>>> "Rich" == Rich Shepard <rshepard at appl-ecosys.com> writes:

Russell> Okay, my problem is, I am not a machinist and I have no idea
Russell> where to find this stuff that I am visualizing, what the
Russell> parts are called (so as to search for or ask for) or
Russell> whatever.  This more or less has me stymied.

Rich>    Find a used camera tripod head, the type with three separate
Rich> clamps for adjustment (yaw, pitch, and roll). You can mount it
Rich> on a baseplate with a compass rose (created with PSTricks,
Rich> naturally), and a protractor for elevation/altitude angles.

It isn't so much a matter of pointing it in an arbitrary direction, it
is the ability to increment smoothly in small changes in a particular
direction.  A high-gain antenna might have a beam width of only a few
degrees.  You want to find the maximum.  You try, measure, move, rinse
and repeat, etc, ... in a controlled way, so you can return to your

A typical tripod head doesn't let you do that.  A geared tripod head
would work, but geared tripod heads are not common, and even after
that, finding one able to hold the weight of an unbalanced antenna and
its mounting hardware means it is no longer inexpensive.

Galen's lead on the trackball telescope mount is interesting, but
... the fellow doesn't say where he got the gears, other than a vague
"at a hobby shop".

Russell Senior         ``I have nine fingers; you have ten.''
seniorr at aracnet.com

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