SBIG AFW Filter Wheels

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SBIG AFW Filter Wheels

$2,199.00 USD$2,599.00 USD

SBIG AFW Filter Wheels are ultra-thin wheels that minimize back focus distance.

The standard version, which accommodates filters ranging from 1 mm to 3 mm thick, uses only 0.55″ (14 mm) back focus.

The tall version, which accommodates 5 mm thick filters, uses only 0.65″ (16.5 mm) back focus.

Compatible with our Full Line of SBIG Cameras

AFW series wheels are compatible with all SBIG cameras using our “STX” style adapter plates.  This includes our popular Aluma AC Advanced CMOS models as well as our legacy STX and STXL models.

AFW wheels can be used on our compact cameras using our AFW to Small Format Camera Adapter.  Please see the Description tab for information on compatibility with specific models.

Four Versions Available

  • AFW-16-36R
    • 16 Filter Slots
    • 36 mm Round Filters
    • Accommodates 1 mm, 2 mm, and 3 mm thick filters
  • AFW-12-50R
    • 12 Filter Slots
    • 50 mm Round Filters
    • Accommodates 1 mm, 2 mm, and 3 mm thick filters
  • AFW-10-50SQ
    • 10 Filter Slots
    • 50 mm Square Filters
    • Accommodates 1 mm, 2 mm, and 3 mm thick filters
  • AFW-10-50ST (tall version)
    • 10 Filter Slots
    • 50 mm Square Filters
    • Accommodates 1 mm, 2 mm, 3 mm, and 5 mm thick filters


For SBIG Aluma AC2020 cameras we recommend either AFW-16-36R or AFW-12-50R.  For SBIG Aluma AC4040 we recommend AFW-10-50SQ.

To accommodate 5 mm thick 50 mm square filters, use the AFW-10-50ST.

A variety of compatible filters are available at additional cost – please see Optical Filters.

Stackable

Two AFW wheels can be stacked to add even more filter slots, using the available Dual AFW Filter Wheel Adapter.  “Virtual Slots” can be assigned, which map to different slots on the two wheels.  If you leave one slot empty in each wheel you get almost double (less two) available filter slots.  If you sometimes need to stack filters then you can have even more virtual slots.

Fast Operation

AFW wheels switch filters quickly, requiring just 1 second to change to an adjacent slot. If the requested slot is on the far side of the carousel the maximum transition time is approximately 5 seconds.

For More Information Click Description Below

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Product Description

Improved Filter Compatibility

In order to accommodate the most popular filter sizes, convenient spacers are included:

  • 3 mm filters – do not use spacer
  • 2 mm filters – align notches in spacer with mounting screws
  • 1 mm filters – flip over spacer so notches face the filter
  • 5 mm filters – AFW-10-50ST only – adds tall spacers and mounting screws

Easy Installation

The AFW series filter wheels are designed to be quickly installed onto the camera without removing the carousel or individual filters.  Removing a single access cover provides access to the filter slots and camera mounting screws.

Two mounting screws are “captive” under the carousel, and can be accessed by turning the carousel by hand to align access holes with the screw heads.  The two remaining screws are freely accessible.  This makes installation and removal quick and easy.

Once the wheel is attached to the camera, a single cable is connected to the camera’s AUX port. This single cable provides all necessary power and control functions.

Dual Wheel Support

For those users requiring more filters, AFW series wheels include the ability to control two filter wheels. The filter wheels can be stacked using our AFW Dual Adapter. A matching three-port low profile cable is included to connect the two wheels to the camera’s control port.

Currently software support is available via an Aluma AC series camera and MaxIm LT or MaxIm DL Pro software.  Alternatively, the dual wheel can be controlled via our SBIG USB to Filter Wheel Adapter using its associated ASCOM driver.

The software allows you to configure “virtual” filter slots, that map to specific slots on wheel 1 and wheel 2.  Usually one slot is left blank in each wheel, allowing you to select filters from one wheel or the other.  It is also possible to arrange for two filters to be used per slot, depending on your requirements.

With one blank slot in each wheel, a pair of AFW-10-50SQ wheels allow you to use 18 filters.  Similarly a pair of AFW-12-50R wheels will allow you to use 22 filters, and a pair of AFW-16-36R wheels will allow you to use 30 filters.

StarChaser Autoguider and AO-X Compatibility

AFW series wheels are compatible with StarChaser SC-3, providing self-guiding in front of the filters.  They also work with our popular AO-X Adaptive Optics unit, providing the tightest possible star images.

Camera Model Compatibility

Please note that when smaller filters are used they may vignette larger sensors.  Compact models will require the AFW to Small Format Camera Adapter.  Some cameras will require an 11066 cable adapter.  Some older products are not electrically compatible and need to use the USB-FW adapter.

Camera ModelRecommended Filter SizeAdaptersNotes
Aluma AC404050 Square
Aluma AC202050 Round or Square
Aluma CCD (all)36 Round; all are compatibleACC14, 11066
STC-42836 Round; all are compatibleACC14, 11066See below for STC-7 and STC-428-P
STX-1680150 SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STX-1680350 SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STX-900050 SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STXL-1620050 Round or SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STXL-1100250 Round or SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STXL-630350 Round or SquareCamera must operate on USB, not Ethernet
STT-830036 Round; all are compatibleACC14, USB-FW
STT-320036 Round; all are compatibleACC14, USB-FW
STT-160336 Round; all are compatibleACC14, USB-FW
STF-830036 Round; all are compatibleACC14
STF-805036 Round; all are compatibleACC14
STF-407036 Round; all are compatibleACC14
STF-320036 Round; all are compatibleACC14
STF-160336 Round; all are compatibleACC14

Additional compatibility notes:

STC-7 and STC-428-P:  The built-in filter wheel prevents the camera from controlling an external wheel.  Options are (a) to replace the built-in wheel with an STC-428-OEM front plate, or (b) stack the AFW on top and control the second wheel via a USB-FW adapter. The two wheels can be operated together using MaxIm DL’s Dual Filter Wheel feature.  ACC14 is required.

ST series:  Not officially supported.  Requires an ACC14.  May work directly with camera but this is not guaranteed, as ST firmware is no longer under active support.  If there is an issue controlling the wheel than a USB-FW adapter will be required.

STL series:  Not officially supported.  The built-in filter wheel prevents the camera from controlling an external wheel. It is possible to attach an AFW wheel to the STL using the ACC10 STL to StarChaser Adapter and use a USB-FW to control it.  Since STL also has an internal filter wheel the combination is best supported using MaxIm DL’s Dual Filter Wheel feature.

Additional Information

Computer Interface

I2C

OS Compatibility

Windows 32 and 64 bit OS, Mac

Weight

4 lbs

Filter Size

36mm Round, 50mm Round, 50mm Square, 50mm Square 5mm Tall

Product overview

Product overview of AFW series filter wheels.

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User’s Manual

Installation, and operation instructions for AWF-10 / AFW-12 Filter Wheels.

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Backfocus Calculator Spreadsheet

This Excel spreadsheet helps you calculate backfocus distance for your system. If you do not have Excel it can be uploaded into Google Sheets.
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