Types of Mounts
The purpose of a telescope mount is to hold the telescope firmly while you look through it. Because telescopes enlarge the picture you look at, vibrations or motion in the mount will be exaggerated and will lead to deterioration of the image. For that reason, it is of great importance that the mount is solid, something that is often neglected with the less expensive scopes.
Mounts are fitted either to tripods or piers. Tripods are handy when the scope cannot be left in its viewing position, or when there is a requirement for taking the scope to different locations. A pier is the most suitable solution for bigger scopes, but these cannot be moved easily as they are usually too heavy, or fixed into the ground.
Because you want to be able to look at different objects, the mount needs to have the ability to move the scope freely so that you can point it at different objects in the sky. There is a variety of ways in which this can be done and the most important systems are described in the following pages: