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More ETX trouble

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  • mads0100
    Alrighty, so I just finished moving to SD and wanted to try out my scope again. I packed it in its pelican and carried it with me the whole way so that the
    Message 1 of 8 , Jun 1 5:29 PM
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      Alrighty, so I just finished moving to SD and wanted to try out my scope again. I packed it in its pelican and carried it with me the whole way so that the movers didn't touch it. I unpack it, set it up, decide to try to do a sensor calibration, calibrate the motors, and train the drives. I setup for the sensor calibration and the autostar tells me it's trying to find level. it slews all the way vertically until it was straight up and down and caused me to turn the etx off. I then decide to calibrate the motors; it slews a little bit vertically and gives me a motor fault, I hit GOTO, it does the same thing and is stuck in a loop.

      So, I'm 0-2 and looking for advice on what could be wrong. I had it plugged into AC power so I'm guessing its not an issue with that. There were no batteries in the unit? As far as I could tell, the LNT was operating, it didn't have any issues pulling time from it before I skipped to setup.

      I hope you guys have some advice,

      Chris Madson
    • Mike Weasner
      Doing a RESET on the AutoStar will sometimes clear the problem of slewing to the vertical. Then do a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES. ... Mike Weasner
      Message 2 of 8 , Jun 1 6:02 PM
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        Doing a RESET on the AutoStar will sometimes clear the problem of slewing to the vertical. Then do a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES.

        On Jun 1, 2010, at 17:29, mads0100 wrote:

        > Alrighty, so I just finished moving to SD and wanted to try out my scope again. I packed it in its pelican and carried it with me the whole way so that the movers didn't touch it. I unpack it, set it up, decide to try to do a sensor calibration, calibrate the motors, and train the drives. I setup for the sensor calibration and the autostar tells me it's trying to find level. it slews all the way vertically until it was straight up and down and caused me to turn the etx off. I then decide to calibrate the motors; it slews a little bit vertically and gives me a motor fault, I hit GOTO, it does the same thing and is stuck in a loop.
        >
        > So, I'm 0-2 and looking for advice on what could be wrong. I had it plugged into AC power so I'm guessing its not an issue with that. There were no batteries in the unit? As far as I could tell, the LNT was operating, it didn't have any issues pulling time from it before I skipped to setup.


        Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
        LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
        ----------------------------------------------------
        | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
        | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
        | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
        ----------------------------------------------------
      • mads0100
        Hey Mike, Thanks for the quick reply. I did the reset and did a CALIBRATE MOTOR on your advice and it seems to be working. it started raining outside so the
        Message 3 of 8 , Jun 1 6:18 PM
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          Hey Mike,

          Thanks for the quick reply. I did the reset and did a CALIBRATE MOTOR on your advice and it seems to be working. it started raining outside so the TRAIN DRIVES will have to wait till tomorrow.

          I was searching around the web and found a few references that the HBX cable can sometimes cause issues like this; do you think it's worth replacing? It seems like a cheap fix that has helped some people with MOTOR FAULT in the past.

          Thanks again,
          Chris


          --- In ETXASTRO@yahoogroups.com, Mike Weasner <etx@...> wrote:
          >
          > Doing a RESET on the AutoStar will sometimes clear the problem of slewing to the vertical. Then do a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES.
          >
          > On Jun 1, 2010, at 17:29, mads0100 wrote:
          >
          > > Alrighty, so I just finished moving to SD and wanted to try out my scope again. I packed it in its pelican and carried it with me the whole way so that the movers didn't touch it. I unpack it, set it up, decide to try to do a sensor calibration, calibrate the motors, and train the drives. I setup for the sensor calibration and the autostar tells me it's trying to find level. it slews all the way vertically until it was straight up and down and caused me to turn the etx off. I then decide to calibrate the motors; it slews a little bit vertically and gives me a motor fault, I hit GOTO, it does the same thing and is stuck in a loop.
          > >
          > > So, I'm 0-2 and looking for advice on what could be wrong. I had it plugged into AC power so I'm guessing its not an issue with that. There were no batteries in the unit? As far as I could tell, the LNT was operating, it didn't have any issues pulling time from it before I skipped to setup.
          >
          >
          > Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
          > LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
          > ----------------------------------------------------
          > | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
          > | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
          > | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
          > ----------------------------------------------------
          >
        • Mike Weasner
          Glad that hopefully solved the problem. As to the HBX cable, it is not always a problem. But the connectors and jacks can get dirty. So check for dirty or
          Message 4 of 8 , Jun 1 6:28 PM
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            Glad that hopefully solved the problem.

            As to the HBX cable, it is not always a problem. But the connectors and jacks can get dirty. So check for dirty or bent pins, or pins that are too depressed to make good contact. If you want to replace the cable, you can easily make one; see the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page on my ETX Site.

            On Jun 1, 2010, at 18:18, mads0100 wrote:

            > Thanks for the quick reply. I did the reset and did a CALIBRATE MOTOR on your advice and it seems to be working. it started raining outside so the TRAIN DRIVES will have to wait till tomorrow.
            >
            > I was searching around the web and found a few references that the HBX cable can sometimes cause issues like this; do you think it's worth replacing? It seems like a cheap fix that has helped some people with MOTOR FAULT in the past.


            Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
            LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
            ----------------------------------------------------
            | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
            | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
            | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
            ----------------------------------------------------
          • mads0100
            Made the new cable today. Wasn t as difficult as I thought it might be. Good excuse to buy a nice crimper/stripper. Cat 5 is ridiculously cheap at Lowes; it
            Message 5 of 8 , Jun 5 5:06 PM
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              Made the new cable today. Wasn't as difficult as I thought it might be. Good excuse to buy a nice crimper/stripper. Cat 5 is ridiculously cheap at Lowes; it was 2 bucks for 9 feet and 25 for the crimper with some RJ45 plugs. Works just fine and I think having a non-coiled cable will be nice.

              Looks like the skies will be clear tonight so I can try it out; I did a calibrate motors and train drives last night due to the hard reset. Need to calibrate the sensors (need polaris) tonight. Might even get to take some pictures of planets!

              Thanks again,
              Chris

              --- In ETXASTRO@yahoogroups.com, Mike Weasner <etx@...> wrote:
              >
              > Glad that hopefully solved the problem.
              >
              > As to the HBX cable, it is not always a problem. But the connectors and jacks can get dirty. So check for dirty or bent pins, or pins that are too depressed to make good contact. If you want to replace the cable, you can easily make one; see the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page on my ETX Site.
              >
              > On Jun 1, 2010, at 18:18, mads0100 wrote:
              >
              > > Thanks for the quick reply. I did the reset and did a CALIBRATE MOTOR on your advice and it seems to be working. it started raining outside so the TRAIN DRIVES will have to wait till tomorrow.
              > >
              > > I was searching around the web and found a few references that the HBX cable can sometimes cause issues like this; do you think it's worth replacing? It seems like a cheap fix that has helped some people with MOTOR FAULT in the past.
              >
              >
              > Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
              > LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
              > ----------------------------------------------------
              > | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
              > | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
              > | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
              > ----------------------------------------------------
              >
            • Mike Weasner
              Well done! Enjoy! ... Mike Weasner Email: etx@me.com / Twitter: mweasner LX200-ACF-8 ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST
              Message 6 of 8 , Jun 5 5:11 PM
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                Well done! Enjoy!

                On Jun 5, 2010, at 17:06, mads0100 wrote:

                > Made the new cable today. Wasn't as difficult as I thought it might be. Good excuse to buy a nice crimper/stripper. Cat 5 is ridiculously cheap at Lowes; it was 2 bucks for 9 feet and 25 for the crimper with some RJ45 plugs. Works just fine and I think having a non-coiled cable will be nice.
                >
                > Looks like the skies will be clear tonight so I can try it out; I did a calibrate motors and train drives last night due to the hard reset. Need to calibrate the sensors (need polaris) tonight. Might even get to take some pictures of planets!


                Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
                LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
                ----------------------------------------------------
                | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
                | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
                | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
                ----------------------------------------------------
              • mads0100
                So the cable was obviously the source of my consternation with my etx. I used to have a motor fault every few hours with it; the new cable resulted in no
                Message 7 of 8 , Jun 6 1:13 PM
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                  So the cable was obviously the source of my consternation with my etx. I used to have a motor fault every few hours with it; the new cable resulted in no motor faults over a 4 hour period of time. I also learned a new trick for getting it to GOTO better; HIGH PERCISION mode. Unbelievably more accurate. It tested my knowledge of stars, but it was putting down a much better location than the standard GOTO.

                  Anyone have any suggestions for a.) setting up polar mode and b.) figuring out the FOV for my DSLR through the back port? I bought an afocal kit from CNC Supply and I was having a hard time determining exactly how much sky I was looking at.

                  Polar mode was a bit testy too. I followed the directions (first time though so I'm guess I took short cuts) and still had objects "drop" in my FOV. It did result in much nicer tracking of objects... The scope was darn near silent! I was thinking that if Polaris was out, could I center it up in the viewfinder? I essentially just set my latitude, set the scope to "0" and put the vertical axis to 90. I was thinking if I took the time make sure I was 90 degrees vertically, and then adjusted only the latitude marking until I saw Polaris in the eyepiece, I'd probably have a much better guiding time.

                  I took some pictures of Venus, Saturn, and Mars last night. I had some pretty good success with Venus and Saturn but not with Mars... Also, I noticed that when I used the flip mirror, the red dot pointer was slightly off between where my camera was seeing and what I saw with the eye piece. Any ideas?

                  Thanks again Mike, your site is a great resource.


                  --- In ETXASTRO@yahoogroups.com, Mike Weasner <etx@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Well done! Enjoy!
                  >
                  > On Jun 5, 2010, at 17:06, mads0100 wrote:
                  >
                  > > Made the new cable today. Wasn't as difficult as I thought it might be. Good excuse to buy a nice crimper/stripper. Cat 5 is ridiculously cheap at Lowes; it was 2 bucks for 9 feet and 25 for the crimper with some RJ45 plugs. Works just fine and I think having a non-coiled cable will be nice.
                  > >
                  > > Looks like the skies will be clear tonight so I can try it out; I did a calibrate motors and train drives last night due to the hard reset. Need to calibrate the sensors (need polaris) tonight. Might even get to take some pictures of planets!
                  >
                  >
                  > Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
                  > LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
                  > ----------------------------------------------------
                  > | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
                  > | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
                  > | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
                  > ----------------------------------------------------
                  >
                • Mike Weasner
                  There are some Polar Alignment tips on the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page on my ETX Site. As to camera FOV, what I did (with my Nikon D70 DSLR and 8
                  Message 8 of 8 , Jun 6 2:19 PM
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                    There are some Polar Alignment tips on the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page on my ETX Site.

                    As to camera FOV, what I did (with my Nikon D70 DSLR and 8" LX200-ACF) was to attach the camera to the telescope with its horizontal or vertical axis of the viewfinder oriented either E/W or N/S. Then slew to a bright star near the celestial equator. Place the star at the north or south edge of the camera's viewfinder. Then press and hold the MODE key until the MODE display appears. Then scroll up/down until the RA/Dec values appear. Note the Declination. Slew the telescope so that the star is on the opposite side in the camera viewfinder and note that Declination value. The difference is the camera FOV in that direction with the current setup (prime focus, eyepiece projection, or afocal). Rotate the camera body 90 degrees and repeat the steps. Now you'll know exactly the dimensions of the camera's FOV. For best results, do the alignment first, although it doesn't have to be exact.

                    On Jun 6, 2010, at 13:13, mads0100 wrote:

                    > Anyone have any suggestions for a.) setting up polar mode and b.) figuring out the FOV for my DSLR through the back port? I bought an afocal kit from CNC Supply and I was having a hard time determining exactly how much sky I was looking at.


                    Mike Weasner Email: etx@... / Twitter: mweasner
                    LX200-ACF-8" ETX-125AT ETX-105PE ETX-90RA ETX-70AT PST GPOD-XL5
                    ----------------------------------------------------
                    | http://www.weasner.com/etx |
                    | Since 1996 - "Best Meade ETX Telescope Web Site" |
                    | -- according to ETX users worldwide |
                    ----------------------------------------------------
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