Customized Platforms


The Dobsonian telescope isn’t complete unless you have a tracking platform. These platforms will you uninterrupted viewing for an hour before needing to reset which takes mere seconds. Unlike other platform makers I use two drive motors which give you more flexibility in using other scopes with the platform. Sure it could work well with only one motor drive but if you’re like me I always end up putting other scopes on it whose center of gravity is not exactly what the platform was designed for. If the center of gravity is off enough a single drive motor can slip if the center of gravity is displaced too much. The bearing faces will now be laminate protected. I’m the only platform maker with the advantage of 2 motors.

·Maple and/or Baltic birch construction.
High quality ¾ inch Baltic birch plywood is used on the platform is used for the bearings and ground board. The platform is finished in polyurethane or with an optional dark stain polyurethane finish. Bearing surfaces are laminated to take greater abuse. Each platform is custom made for your scope and latitude, not a standard model.  All stainless or brass hardware and ball bearings.  In 2020 I began putting a fine knurling on the drive shaft for extra friction but not enough to score the laminate.

-Quiet dual AC timing motors.
AC timing motors are quiet, vibration free and not expensive. They can be driven with house current or driven with an inexpensive inverter.

-One hour tracking, instant reset.
The platform tracks for at least an hour and then stops without running off the rollers. Resetting couldn’t be simpler. The drive rollers are smooth so you just push it back to the start position which takes only seconds. It doesn’t get any simpler.

·Solid vibration free support.
The ground board and motors are all directly under the bearing sectors for a very stable vibration free platform. There is no danger of the scope tipping over.

-Every inch of additional height can be significant so every effort is made to keep the platform as low as possible (5 inches typical)..

·Laser polar alignment fixture included free with platform (but not the laser).
·Leveling foot on south leg.
·Economically priced.   Check around and compare price, features and quality.

Platforms are custom made,

$150 down payment with order; the remainder due before shipment.

Delivery: 4 to 6 weeks subject to availability.

Contact by email with your shipping address and info on form below is required.

Information sheet on your scope is needed for ordering:


   Note: Feet spacing is not the radius!


All Platforms                                                       $425                                                                    (scopes 12 inch and under,  for larger call)

Add ons:

Dark stained finish                                             $80

A check or money order is the preferred payment method, with PayPal add 3%.  Platforms are custom orders so a non-refundable $150 is required. There is also a packing charge of up to $30 as well as shipping charges through UPS or Fedex.  Orders for platforms are not accepted November through March. Shipment is 4 to 6 weeks but is subject to availability of parts.  I only build a limited number per month so over that number will be on a waiting list.

Note  At present I’m stopped because the local supplier of Baltic birch is out of stock and don’t know when they will have some.  On top of that H&R my only source of motors is out of the ones I use and won’t have any until September.  Then I have a waiting list on top of that so I don’t know when I can take any more orders.
A lot of folks seemed confused with the rocker box COG.  It is simple to find by laying it on its side and balancing the rocker box and ground board on a stick or broom handle (without the OTA)  then measuring to ground.

Ed Jones   1071 Terrydel Lane, Cincinnati, Ohio 45245  513-498-5412

A recent customer said:”That platform you built for me is fantastic.  It held Saturn in the center of my 9mm eyepiece for the entire time I was shooting pics.  Maybe 15 minutes.  It was awesome!”

Second Axis
   A speed control will take care of correcting in RA but for DEC a second axis is needed.  Here is a very simple way of doing that, a simple tangent drive shown here that I use with my Schmidt camera.   I borrowed this mount from another of my scopes and made this tangent drive.
I’m taking a second look at offering a dual latitude platform, contact me if interested.

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