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?"). Side-by-side is also a great way to solar observe with both white light and H-alpha!
Please note that while it might be tempting to use a side-by-side setup for guided imaging, we do not recommend it due to the potential that pointing and flexure issues may produce poor guiding results. 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 DOVE08, DOVELM2, DOVELM16, and DOVELM16S. Note: The DOVE15 saddle plate cannot be attached to these plates.
Please see this SBD13SS / SBD18SS hole pattern illustration Note that the previous 16" version of the plate may be noted in the drawing, but the dimensions are the same for the newer 18" version.
Please see this illustrated dimension calculator when choosing the proper side-by-side plate.
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 accommodate these side-by-sides bars if they are designed to accept the D-style plate, including the following Astro-Physics plates: DOVEDV10 and DOVELM162 (as well as their previous versions - the DOVELM2, DOVELM16, and DOVELM16S).
Balancing a Side-by-Side setup is much more complicated than a single scope setup. Please see the following linked PDF for a helpful guide: Balancing Side-by-Side
- Weight: 13" (33.0 cm) plate - 2.5 lb. (1.1 kg)
- 18" (45.8 cm) plate - 3.3 lb. (1.5 kg)
- Plate width, both: 4" (10.2 cm)
- Distance from optical center to plate's shoulder, both: 1.85" (4.7 cm)
- Distance to optical centers when two instruments are mounted: 13" plate - 9.5" (25.0 cm); 16" plate - 14.5" (36.8 cm)