Peterson Engineering Mounting Assistant
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The Mounting Assistant is a super-compact 8-1/2" X 10-1/4" mounting plate designed to simplify attachment of Meade's LX400ACF, LX200ACF, LX200R, LX200GPS, RCX400, LX200 Classic and LX90 telescopes being used in the Alt-azimuth mode with Meade's Standard Field Tripod, Giant Field Tripod or Ultra Stable Tripod. It fits the 7" MCT as well as the 8", 10", 12" and 14" RCX and SCT.
With this mounting system, you first, "square" the tripod using hardware supplied to insure that the legs are properly positioned. Then you simply place the rounded end of the telescope base against the three yellow positioning fingers and lower the telescope (as shown) until it sits upon the base. Instead of wobbling the telescope sits firmly upon the plate and perfectly aligned over the tripod mounting screw. Simply raise the mounting screw and turn to engage. (Pete developed this mounting plate after twice having nearly dropped his 10" LX200 while attempting mounting).
The Mounting Assistant's compact size permits convenient storage of your tripod in a tight space such as a closet or a vehicle without removal of the mounting plate.
To better accommodate SCT owners, a wing nut and washer (not shown) are included with the Mounting Assistant system to simplify "squaring" Meade's Standard Field Tripod and Giant Field Tripod before placing the scope on the mounting plate. This simple procedure has been shown to be 100% effective - the scope mounts 100% of the time first time every time. At present this is the only mounting plate known to provide this additional feature.
The Mounting Assistant is fabricated from alloy 6061T6 aircraft aluminum, and finished with black anodize. The mounting guide posts are steel covered with vinyl so as to prevent marring the telescope base. The hardware for attaching to the tripod is included.
The Mounting Assistant has been independently reviewed by Rainy Day Magazine. They have graciously granted us permission to place it on our website at REVIEW
Cloudy Nights posting #2133794 : I was really nervous about getting my new 12" LX90 onto the tripod. For all the money I've spent on this project, I invested 80 bucks for Peterson's Mounting Assistant. I couldn't lift the 12" myself, so I had a friend do it - someone who's never put a scope on a tripod in his life. While he had it in the air, I guided the base onto the oversize plate, then pulled it back to the stops, and 'clang' - the mounting bolt slid right up into the hole. With no further adjustment necessary, the bolt and spreader bar came up into the perfect position. If I had known this thing was this slick, I'd have put one on my old 8". Heck, I might do it yet to add some resale value and 'assurance' for the buyer.
From California: "Just received my Mounting Assistant and I am amazed. Each time I placed my 10" Meade LX200GPS on its tripod, holding it precariously with one hand and trying to screw in the mounting bolt with the other, I would worry that it would fall. After just a few short days of struggling with my new scope, I decided I needed a good mounting plate. I looked at your competitor, but I didn't like the idea of leaving my eyepieces out in the open to collect dew, dust and bugs. Your plate was just what I was looking for. I can now attach and remove my scope in seconds with less worry of it falling. Thanks again for a great product."
From California: "My Mounting Assistant arrived this afternoon, and it's G R E A T ! ! It makes assembling the scope to the tripod as simple as "falling off a log". This is something Meade should have thought about as standard equipment. Good work!!"
From Sydney, Australia: "This is just a short note to thank you for your prompt assistance, ultra fast delivery and WONDERFUL products. The Mounting Assistant changed what used to be a long string of four letter expletives and half an hour or more into a frustration free instantaneous exercise. Not being the sort of person that you would describe as 'handy', I was very wary of touching any internals to the scope; However the very clear instructions and solid engineering instilled me with the confidence to try. And boy am I glad that I did. It was an extremely straightforward process, well supported by the documentation. The new focuser is a joy to use and is truly a level above the standard unit. I can never go back. The quality workmanship of your products is something that you should (and undoubtedly do) take great pride in, and I wish you continuing success with them."
From Wisconsin: "Hey Pete, I received my plate today. Zowie it's great. I had tried once to place the 10" up by myself and said, "the hell with this, I'll wait until my Peterson Plate comes.' And I did and I'm happy. One other thought. My dad was a toolmaker for 40 years, and I know he'd be proud. Beautiful work. Thanks again ,and I'll be ordering more stuff soon."
From Kansas: "Shortly after taking the scope out of the box and attempting to place it on the tripod (in broad daylight), I realized that this was not going to be a pleasant experience in the dark. The next day I called Pete and ordered the mounting plate. Exactly three days later it arrived. It took me 10 minutes to install the plate. I mounted the scope on the first try! Wow what a difference. I did it two more times, just to make sure the first time wasn't a fluke. Same results. Thanks, Pete!"
Yahoo LX200GPS user group message #77250: "I had to swap out my new LX200 GPS 8 " two times at OPT. My threaded rod actually froze while trying to screw it in without the tripod attached. With the tripod attached it just did not feel right, I had to really struggle to get it to screw in. We tried it with no tripod and it just got stuck. Also the tripod seemed not to be level with all legs fully collapsed and sitting on a level driveway. After my two swap outs I purchased a Peterson Mounting Assistant..... End of problem. Pete Peterson has mastered all these issues and then some. With his Mounting Assistant and "helpful hints" I now mount my scope properly 100% of the time and I am able to level the tripod with his very easy to use wing nut system. The scope just fits on the mounting assistant very very easily."
From Virginia: I bought a mounting assistant from you back in November while waiting for delivery of my 10" LX200R, had a very nice conversation with you and got a lot of good advice. After what seemed like an endless wait I got the scope the first week of February. I frankly don't know how I would have secured the beast to the tripod without the mounting assistant and the handy-dandy wing nut to seat the legs on the spreader.
From The Netherlands: Hi Pete, One word: WOW!!!!! Just mounted my 8 inch LX200 GPS. Followed your instructions and then mounted the scope in one easy step. For the first time I could get the rod completely screwed in........I never managed to do this before!!! Thank you for saving my back and my scope (before I also almost dropped it, and many times almost damaged the rod).