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For lots more information about us & the Watch House Equatorial Platforms please read on, and/or use the grey sidebar at top left to navigate around our site pages. 
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Due to popular demand, we are currently scheduling  limited production runs of our equatorial  platforms.

 Please email me direct at d.c.billington@btinternet.com to place an order.

IF you already own one of our platforms and require product support , please feel free to contact us as normal.

Your 8 , 10, 12, 16 or larger Dobsonian telescope......   

 
                                             
PLUS  
            
 Our Equatorial Platform           
 
= Tracking for YOUR Dobsonian Telescope 
 

 

 

Welcome to Equatorial-Platforms-UK !  

 

The Watch House Equatorial PlatformsTM : Finally, Tracking for Your Dobsonian Mounted Telescope

 

The Watch House Equatorial Platforms have been specifically designed for UK and European astronomers who wish to upgrade their Dobsonian mounted telescopes for a greatly enhanced observing experience by tracking the moon, stars, planets, the sun and deep sky objects. 

 

Our platforms are now available in 2 sizes :

  •  The Standard Size  - for scopes up to about 14 ins aperture and 120lbs maximum weight 

or

  •  The XL-Size  - for scopes up to about 20 ins aperture, and ultralights to about 24 ins and 120lbs maximum weight
  •  

and now also in 2 latitude versions :

  • The UK platform  - which is fully user adjustable for latitudes 470 North to 570 North, supplied preset to your home latitude.


  • The Southern platform - which is fully user adjustable for latitudes 400 North to 500 North 

 



 

Mettez à jour votre télescope Dobson avec une plate-forme Watch House équatoriale, ce qui va transformer votre expérience de l'observation. Votre plate-forme de suivi vous permettra d'apprécier les détails beaucoup plus fins planétaire et lunaire, et d'étudier les objets du ciel profond en profondeur et de clarté étonnante. Pour plus de détails en français cliquez ICI

 

Version Sud de l'Europe , couvrant les latitudes  400 a 500  

Nord - maintenant disponible.

 




Rüsten Sie Ihren Dobson-Teleskop mit einem Watch House Äquatorial-Plattform und wird dies verwandeln Sie Ihre Beobachtung Erfahrung. Ihr Tracking-Plattform ermöglicht es Ihnen, viel feiner planetarischen & Lunar Detail schätzen und Deep-Sky-Objekte in erstaunlicher Tiefe und Klarheit zu studieren. Für deutsche Sprache Details klicken Sie hier  .

 





Get into astro-photography with your Dobsonian and an equatorial platform !!


My best image so far :

A transit of Europa, imaged by the boss with our 12" US Orion Dobsonian on a Watch House Standard Platform, and a basic  Phillips SPC880 web cam , November 4th 2011 from St Agnes, Cornwall , UK , Registax 5 processing.
 
 
 
Clear Skies and Good Seeing from us all in 2017 ! ! !
 

Don't just take our word for the benefits of using an equatorial tracking platform :

 "Equatorial platforms can transform Dobsonians with premium optics into the finest planetary telescopes available. Faint galaxies and nebulas that normally fly across the eyepiece on an un-driven scope suddenly stand still for detailed inspection, and deep-sky observers wonder how they saw anything without a platform......."

from Terence Dickinson & Alan Dyer, The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, Firefly books.

" Experienced astronomers agree you increase your apparent telescope aperture by up to 40% when using tracking; you can concentrate on the object in the eyepiece, rather than moving the scope around."
 from the web site of the most well known US developer of tracking and GOTO systems.
 

And a few quotes from some of our satisfied customers ......
"Makes a huge difference to the pleasure of using a big telescope"
"...a great bit of kit, looking like it's engineered to last a lifetime. Thank you again for a really great product which does what it says on the tin ! "
" the ground board of my Dob sits like a leach on the non-slip paint."
"I had regulas centered in a 9" FOV and it stayed dead center for 5 minutes"
"Saturn at 250x, better than I have ever seen it at this mag. Then M81 and M82, again 250x, also super"
" the results really do seem astounding. I really never bothered going over 150x before as the image is so poor, but with the platform, it does appear that with moderate seeing I can now push up to 333x". 
"The platform is extremely good, I think it is the answer to all my problems, I am very impressed by the versatility it offers and it is very simple to use."
"Jupiter held the centre of the field for a good half-hour plus and I was able to observe the shadow of Io just past the central meridian. What a delight! "

 " It's a real treat to view something at high magnification without it flying out of sight in a few seconds ... which is a great help in trying to split close doubles... I  managed to split the primary component of Epsilon Equuleus - at that time it had a separation of 0.43 arc-seconds and is closing up. I used the crazy magnification of 750x and definitely saw 2 separate stars during moments of steadier seeing. "

 



            To place your order please click here.

 



If you still need to be convinced,  seeing is believing as they say, so watch the video below of Jupiter and her 4 moons, taken with our 12" Orion-US Dobsonian on its standard UK platform, under not very good seeing ( ie perceptible atmospheric wobble) .

 

 

Tracking Jupiter with a Watch House Platform

 

 

The video was recorded at the equivalent of ca 200-250x mag with the tracking on for the first 15 seconds, then the tracking motor switched off for 15 seconds, then back on again for the final 20 seconds.

You can just hear the click as the motor is switched on and off. We have done NO post-recording processing whatsoever , this is raw "live" video footage, ie the monitor view, which represents the eyepiece experience of tracking. 

We over-exposed Jupiter on purpose in order to capture all 4 moons, and so no detail of the planet is visible ( but see our other jupiter images above and below ! ).

Note how Callisto just hangs stationary at the edge of the field of view during the end sequence of the video.

Please also read our Owners feedback section as to the experience of tracking with a Dobsonian on our platforms.

 

 

 Imaging with your Dob now becomes possible  :

To illustrate how basic web-cam astrophotography becomes possible at very low cost with your Dobsonian on one of our platforms, here are some images of Jupiter and Saturn obtained with a £20 Phillips webcam and our 12" US Orion Dobsonian, used  on a standard UK platform . 

 
Transit of Europa : 
 
For this  image ( November 4th 2011) 30 seconds of video were recorded @ 30 frames/ second and processed with the free program Registax 5 by optimisation, stacking of the best 100 frames and a small wavelet adjustment. Capturing significant detail on the planet, and both the shadow of Europa and the moon itself is quite an achievement, ( ie a BIG slice of luck, right place , right time and decent sky conditions) ! A much higher degree of sharp surface detail was visible through the eyepiece at say 350x mag.
Simple basic compass alignment of the platform was used to set-up .
 
 
 
 
This montage was made from a series of 30 second  videos recorded at 30fps on the evening of 4th November 2011, processed with registax 5 , and covers about 30 minutes total elsaped time.
 
 
 
For this image of Saturn  2 Minutes of video footage at 15 frames/second was recorded in June 2011 processed with the free program Registax 5 by optimisation, stacking of the best 300 frames and a small wavelet adjustment. The Cassini division, and the "squashed" nature of the planet  are clearly visible in this colour image.
 
 
 
 
 
You should also have a look at the video of tracking Jupiter at much higher magnification, and our numerous videos demonstrating the tracking of the platforms and images of the Moon Sun and planets, together with deep sky objects on our Photography with a Platform pages HERE .
 
 


 The Watch House Equatorial Platforms :

Finally, Tracking for Your Dobsonian Mounted Telescope

  

Check out our extensive video slideshow below for more information about the Watch House Equatorial Platforms and how to set it up and use them.

 

 

the Watch House Equatorial Platform

 

 
 

The Standard - UK latitude Watch House Equatorial Platform :
takes all UK commercial available Dobsonian mounted telescopes, Meade, Skywatcher, Orion-UK, Orion-US, GSO, etc, etc, up to 12 inches aperture and most 14" scopes too.
 
 
The standard platform is also suitable for many larger aperture, home built and specialist built Dobsonian mounted telescopes ( eg David Lukehurst's premium and ultra-light Dobsonians, etc )  up to 120 lbs maximum weight, which have a Centre of Gravity of 22 inches or below.
 
 (The CofG of your Commercial classical Dobsonian setup will normally be several inches below  the altitude bearing central pivot point, due to the significant mass of the Dobsonian base boards etc,  CLICK HERE for instructions on how to calculate this exactly.) 
 

To place your order please click here.
 
 
The XL - UK latitude Watch House Equatorial Platform :
takes larger commercial available Dobsonian mounted telescopes, Meade, Skywatcher, Orion-UK, Orion-US, GSO, etc, and specialist scopes up to 20 inches or ultralights up to 24 inches  again with a maximum weight of 120lbs all up.
 For details please click 
HERE