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Farpoint’s Azimuth Upgrade Kit greatly improves the stability and function of your base. The base with kit installed has much smoother and consistent movements. The troublesome rocking of the ground board is eliminated. For Zhumell Z8, Z10, and Z12 telescopes and many other Guan Sheng Dobsonians.
The stock Zhumell azimuth bearing (and that of many other Guan Sheng Dobsonians) is designed around a central “wagon wheel” with embedded needle bearings sandwiched between two metal disks. There are two problems with this design. First, the needle bearings have very little friction; they are much too loose. Even with the maximum tension on the adjustment knob, the telescope creeps from the desired azimuth with the slightest touch or breeze.
Second, there is no support or contact for the outside edge (rim) of the baseboard upon the ground board. This results in rocking of the baseboard. Most other Dobsonians have Teflon pads or some other support directly over the feet of the ground board. This is exactly were the support should be. In a properly designed Dobsonian, the weight of the baseboard is supported in the middle, but also (importantly) directly over the feet so that the weight of the baseboard is transferred through the ground board directly to the feet. The middle of the baseboard and the edge of the baseboard are both fully supported. Any possible “rocking” of the baseboard is eliminated. Unfortunately, this is not so with Zhumell’s “wagon wheel” design.
But whatever! These problems are completely eliminated with Farpoint’s easy to install Azimuth Upgrade Kit. Once installed, the weight of the base board is supported by a central Teflon pad and three outer Teflon pads positioned directly over the ground board feet. The result is smooth and positive azimuth movement and much greater stability!