Mount your favorite instruments side by side with these versatile plates. The Astro-Physics Side-by-Side Dovetails are just the thing for a tandem mounting arrangement, allowing you to do your own eyepiece or instrument comparisons. Set up a wide-field scope next to a long focal length instrument if your all-night session includes a variety of different-sized objects (dare we say a "modified Messier marathon?").
Please note that while it might be tempting to use this type of side-by-side setup for guided imaging, that is not necessarily an application we would recommend due to potential pointing and flexure issues of one of the scope relative to the other. This potential is true of any side-by-side setup.
Recessed mounting surfaces allow for your preferred dovetail saddle to attach to either end of the plate.
Using either of these side-by-side plates in conjunction with our dovetail plates affords the opportunity to take advantage of the offset position capabilities designed into our saddle plates. Current Astro-Physics saddle plates that can be attached to the Side-by-Side Dovetail Plates include:
Discontinued saddle plates that can also be bolted onto the Side-by-Sides include the DOVELM, DOVELM16, and DOVELM16S.
Note: The DOVE15 saddle plate cannot be attached to these plates.
The plates are shipped with two 1/4 - 20 x 3/8 socket head cap screws installed on the bottom to act as a safety stop if the bottom saddle plate clamps are loosened.
Any saddle plate will accomodate these side-by-sides bars if they are designed to accept the D-series style plate, including the following Astro-Physics plates: DOVELM2 and DOVELM162 (as well as their previous versions - the DOVELM, DOVELM16, and DOVELM16S).
* Weight: 13" plate - 2.5 lbs. (1.1kg); 16" plate - 3 lbs. (1.4kg)
* Plate width, both: 4" (102mm)
* Distance from optical center to plate's shoulder, both: 1.85" (47mm)
* Distance to optical centers when two instruments are mounted: 13" plate - 9.5" (250mm); 16" plate - 12.5" (318mm)
You can determine which length side-by-side plate you need by answering this question: What is the total distance that my proposed setup actually requires to function without clearance issues? One way to determine this is to do a "trial." Set your intended instruments beside each other so that their optical centers are spaced at the 9.5" or 12.5" of our plates. Then you can judge whether the space between the two scopes will provide adequate space for fingers and other accessories used in your final setup. Be sure to pay special attention to the space requirements of your mounting rings.