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DarkFrame rebuilt & tuned Celestron CGEM-DX  Video:©2017 Ian Bird

Book your mounts in now for Hypertune or StellarDrive™ over the Christmas period as we have spare capacity

Winter Opening Hours: Monday-Friday 9am-7pm BST
Much shorter lead times for all Sky-Watcher EQ Tuning!
With hundreds of satisfied customers across 5 continents,
we are now the largest, most experienced and largest
re-manufacturer of Equatorial Mounts in Europe.

Phone for more details - +44 (0)23 9257 0283 / dave@darkframe.co.uk

Have your Celestron or Sky-Watcher/Orion USA EQ Mount fully rebuilt and Hypertuned from only £119.00. Current turnaround for most mount tuning builds is now typically within 2-3 weeks for Sky-Watcher (Celestron AVX's are getting faster too just 3-4 weeks from 15/11/17) from receipt of your mount at our workshop, including EU and worldwide orders. (excluding repairs and custom projects). This is dependant on mount condition and specification (i.e. non standard spec, older mounts and undeclared repairs will take longer). 

Celestron EQ Mount Tuning now fully released and faster! 
All EQ models from CG5-GT to CGEM-DX/CGE-PRO and including the AVX and StellarDrive AVX-R are now available after substantial testing. Our rebuild methods are precision engineering led, not DIY level kits or home brewed. We can extend the exposure times and reliability of your Celestron imaging mount, adding extended lifespan and usability. Turnaround times within 3-4 weeks for all models, and getting faster as we increase cycle times.
Popular Quick Links:

EQ5 Hypertune from £179

QHY Polemaster from £278

HEQ5 Hypertune from £259
StellarDrive 5 £ 1299 Upgrade £549

EQ6 Hypertune £289 (Select Gen1 for Pre-installed Belt Kits)

EQ6 Hypertune £499 (Select Gen2 for full Hyper-tune)

New StellarDrive 6  £1899  or Upgrade from £699

Did you know that we provide PHD Guide Support with all of our mounts? We can help you get the best out of your hypertuned mount to match your payload as we have data across hundreds of customers. Also, we use the data to monitor its performance to provide advice and any warranty issues.
PRODUCT NEWS! 15/11/17 - New production processes have reduced lead times on all EQ mount tuning for Sky-Watcher mounts from today! Typically 5-7 Days for Star Adventurer's, and 10-15 days for EQ-5-AZEQ6GT. Celestron mounts also benefit from reduced lead times too. We are working hard to turnaround mounts faster, yet maintain quality. Repair and Restoration project times will also come down as we will have more time and resources to focus on them.
LATEST NEWS! 03/11/17 - Putting the finishing touches to our new tuned EQ3-2. Could it be the ultimate travel widefield imager? ;-)
LATEST NEWS! 04/10/17 - New axis bearings available for older mounts which restore and improve payload balance and tracking. Prices from £36 for StellarDrive GX refurbished bearing, to £100 for a full axis set by FAG for HEQ5/NEQ6. 

Phone for more details - +44 (0)23 9257 0283 / dave@darkframe.co.uk  
Go deeper into the Cosmos
with your fully rebuilt mount!
We are the UK based specialists in worldwide servicing, repair and hypertuning EQ mounts including unmatched belt-drive upgrades for Sky-watcher HEQ5, NEQ6, with hundreds of modified mounts to our name across the UK, Europe and Worldwide.
They come with a Two year FULL worldwide warranty on NEW StellarDrive™ mounts, TWO years worldwide RTB limited warranty on all other tuning on owner used mounts. This protects the value of your mount, and is further reassurance of the quality of work we do. Every mount tune includes a unique serial number, and Certificate of Authenticity/Warranty. To help you get the best out of your tuned mount, we also provide PHD2 support and guide data specific to your telescope payload.
No other mount re-manufacturer offers such support or has better independent performance data. We have also ramped up our services for Celestron and other equatorial mounts, as we have increased production and test capacity without compromising quality.
Why tune my EQ Mount?
Customer Data proves it works and saves money upgrading to get better images!
Before, if you wanted more than your mount could offer in terms of usable payload and tracking, then you would have to upgrade to a heavier, more expensive mount. Now, you can get more from your existing mount not just in terms of max payload, but also better tracking, pointing, guiding and more reliable imaging. With our unique engineering experience spanning across several hundred mounts since 2014, we have honed our tuning to near perfection. We have unequalled independent customer supplied data that tuning an equatorial mount works, and can match the performance of more expensive offerings. It also increases lifespan and retains value, with recommended service intervals of 3-5 years your mount could last for up to 20 years. Without servicing we are seeing EQ6's suffering from 10+ years of neglect, and are honestly a gamble to tune or repair. Bearings need regreasing 4-7 years. There are NO sealed for life components in these mounts. They do degrade over time. Don't send them in too late!
It's your mount. But better.
As proven by Customer Data.
Our latest DarkFrame 'Bonneville' Tuned Sky-Watcher EQ6/NEQ6-AZ EQ6 GT mounts typically run at a Peak-to-Peak Period Error of circa ±7.5 ArcSec unguided, which is 3-4x better from factory spec (circa ±28+). Guided, all our mounts are now sub-arcsecond capable under PHD2, capable of circa 0.3-0.7 arc-seconds RMS guided, with a guided PE of ±1.5 arc-seconds or 3.25-5.0 arcsec RMS, depending on seeing payload, balance and polar alignment. This is proven independent Customer supplied data across tens of dozens of mounts with a variety of payloads, not a factory test. These are far better results than with just the Rowan Belt Kit fitted. Accept no shortcuts! 

The latest innovation of performance with precision RA/DEC worm-gears is called StellarDrive™. This level of enhancement is the ultimate iteration of an HEQ5/EQ6 class mount.  These mounts run even better for the very best in unguided and unguided performance, with super-flat PHD graphs and more consistent guiding, which a must for bigger telescopes or longer exposures... For the Sky-Watcher EQ6/NEQ6-AZ EQ6 GT mounts typically run at a Peak-to-Peak Period Error of under ±5 ArcSec unguided, which is nearly 6x better from factory spec (circa ±28+). Guided, a StellarDrive EQ6 is capable of circa 0.2-0.5 arc-seconds RMS guided, with a guided PE of ±0.5 arc-seconds or 0.66arcsec/min unguided (@5000mm focal length), depending on seeing payload, balance and polar alignment.
The difference between our early belt-kit mounts and newer Bonneville 6.3x Build Type halves Periodic Error.
Celestron Mount data is also starting to come in with sub-arcsecond tracking, an reports of up to 20-30 minute guided images with the AVX-CGEM/CGE-PRO range of mounts, with better GOTO alignment, and smoother operation. Periodic Error and gearbox harmonics are reduced. Unguided and visual work is also much improved. We can remove the stiction in these mounts in such a way that it transforms their performance. No other rebuilt mount comes close.
What do you do to make them better?
Mounts wear out. It's that simple. If you think you can get away without servicing your car for ten years then good luck! Servicing them makes them last longer, and tuning them makes them perform better. Same with mounts. Our greases make for a faster reacting and smoother running mount. Reworked worm-gears lower periodic error, and bearings revitalise the mount. 'Polished' components remove tolerance, instead we use Tribology. Engineering Science. Working to Micron level we add tolerance to your mount in number of ways to make them more accurate. Our StellarDrive-SPX gears can make an HEQ5 guide down to 0.42 Arcsec RMS, using a patentable process.
You can't do this at home, and is much more than slapping in a belt kit and some bicycle grease like some critics claim. However, just like a car, mounts need to be used, and not parked up for long periods of time. 
How Good are they?
Our customer owned mounts also offer similar consistent performance, as we publish their typical real-world values, not simulated data. In the case of the StellarDrive based NEQ6, it matched the performance envelope of the Takahaski EM200 is based on. That's 10min unguided pin sharp images with an ED80 Refractor, or 5 minutes with a 200PDS Newtonian! Who need s a guide scope? Just think what we can do for your mount with our precision worm-gears! In fact, every mount we rebuild tracks better for both visual and imaging use, guides for longer and more reliably and is quieter when slewing. See our updated performance data page for the difference.
All these figures are dependent on the condition of the base mount for rebuild. Older mounts that have not been regularly serviced or cared for, may not achieve these average figures. Based on the data across several hundred mounts, we strongly recommend a 1st service within 3-5 years of the purchase of a new mount, with main axis bearings changed every 7-10 years. This is dependent on use, and storage of your mount. You should exercise your mount every three months regardless of use, to work the bearing greases.
Our work is customer measurable and meticulous, so every mount we create has to be right and we never rush them out. Please enquire about what we can to do your EQ mount, be it Sky-Watcher/Orion USA, Celestron and iOptron, just read what our customers say...
For more details on specific servicing/tuning work please e-mail:dave@darkframe.co.uk
E&OE - Mount Build Specification and components used subject to change without notice. Example EQ mount tracking performance is not guaranteed, and is subject to the age and condition of the Donor Mount.

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  • Contact Us
    11 Drift Road, Clanfield, Waterlooville, Hampshire, PO80JJ, United Kingdom
    +44 23 9257 0283
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