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Help with CCDSoft

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  • ksbtk@comcast.net
    I ran into a most frustrating situation with CCDSoft last night when trying to calibrate my EM-200 mount for autoguiding. No matter what value I input for the
    Message 1 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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      I ran into a most frustrating situation with CCDSoft last night when trying
      to calibrate my EM-200 mount for autoguiding. No matter what value I input
      for the calibration time for the X-axis (times ranging from 7 up to 30
      seconds), I would keep getting the error message that there was insufficient
      movement in the +X axis. I know for a fact that I was getting more than 10
      pixels of movement but kept getting this message.

      I was able to calibrate and autoguide in CCDOPS with a setting of 10 seconds
      for the X axis so I know the mount is performing fine.

      Does anyone have any thoughts as to why this would occur with CCDSoft but
      not with CCDOPS? Thanks in advance.

      Clear skies,
      Kevin Dixon
      ksbtk@...
    • Steve Reilly
      Hey Kevin, What was the tracking rate set for and how bright was the star you were trying to calibrate on? It is possible to go to a bright star in the region
      Message 2 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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        Hey Kevin,

        What was the tracking rate set for and how bright was the star you were
        trying to calibrate on? It is possible to go to a bright star in the
        region that you are imaging in to calibrate and then go back to your
        object and acquire a dimmer star to track on. Also, what version are you
        using?

        Steve

        -----Original Message-----
        From: ksbtk@... [mailto:ksbtk@...]
        Sent: Sunday, June 02, 2002 7:39 AM
        To: ccd-newastro@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [ccd-newastro] Help with CCDSoft


        I ran into a most frustrating situation with CCDSoft last night when
        trying
        to calibrate my EM-200 mount for autoguiding. No matter what value I
        input
        for the calibration time for the X-axis (times ranging from 7 up to 30
        seconds), I would keep getting the error message that there was
        insufficient
        movement in the +X axis. I know for a fact that I was getting more than
        10
        pixels of movement but kept getting this message.

        I was able to calibrate and autoguide in CCDOPS with a setting of 10
        seconds
        for the X axis so I know the mount is performing fine.

        Does anyone have any thoughts as to why this would occur with CCDSoft
        but
        not with CCDOPS? Thanks in advance.

        Clear skies,
        Kevin Dixon
        ksbtk@...




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      • ksbtk@comcast.net
        Good afternoon Steve: If I understand your first question correctly, it was at the standard sidereal rate. I was thinking of increasing it so that when
        Message 3 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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          Good afternoon Steve:

          If I understand your first question correctly, it was at the standard
          sidereal rate. I was thinking of increasing it so that when CCDSoft slews
          the telescope, it is certain to move the required 10 pixels. What do you
          advise with regard to that?

          The star was fairly bright and stood out clearly from the surrounding stars.
          I guess I can try an even brighter star.

          I am using version 5.00.041.

          Thanks for your help and thoughts.

          Clear skies,
          Kevin

          From: "Steve Reilly" <sreilly@...>


          > Hey Kevin,
          >
          > What was the tracking rate set for and how bright was the star you were
          > trying to calibrate on? It is possible to go to a bright star in the
          > region that you are imaging in to calibrate and then go back to your
          > object and acquire a dimmer star to track on. Also, what version are you
          > using?
        • Ron Wodaski
          Most of the downloads for the book are currently not available. The web hosting company where the content resides has not fixed the problem, which is at least
          Message 4 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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            Most of the downloads for the book are currently not available. The web
            hosting company where the content resides has not fixed the problem, which
            is at least two days old. if they are not able to get it fixed on Monday, I
            will find another host for the download stuff and will post a note here when
            it is ready either way.

            Sorry for the problem with downloads in the meantime.

            Ron Wodaski
            author of The New CCD Astronomy
            http://www.newastro.com
          • randy_nulman
            Kevin, You don t want to do that. You want to calibrate at the same speed you will be guiding at. I don t use CCDSoft, but just a thought since CCDops worked
            Message 5 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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              Kevin,

              You don't want to do that. You want to calibrate at the same speed
              you will be guiding at.

              I don't use CCDSoft, but just a thought since CCDops worked OK:
              I suspect CCDSoft allows you to check off whether an axis is active
              or not. Did you check to make sure both axis (in both directions)
              are enabled?

              Randy

              --- In ccd-newastro@y..., ksbtk@c... wrote:
              > Good afternoon Steve:
              >
              > If I understand your first question correctly, it was at the
              standard
              > sidereal rate. I was thinking of increasing it so that when
              CCDSoft slews
              > the telescope, it is certain to move the required 10 pixels. What
              do you
              > advise with regard to that?
              >
              > The star was fairly bright and stood out clearly from the
              surrounding stars.
              > I guess I can try an even brighter star.
              >
              > I am using version 5.00.041.
              >
              > Thanks for your help and thoughts.
              >
              > Clear skies,
              > Kevin
              >
              > From: "Steve Reilly" <sreilly@a...>
              >
              >
              > > Hey Kevin,
              > >
              > > What was the tracking rate set for and how bright was the star
              you were
              > > trying to calibrate on? It is possible to go to a bright star in
              the
              > > region that you are imaging in to calibrate and then go back to
              your
              > > object and acquire a dimmer star to track on. Also, what version
              are you
              > > using?
            • Steve Reilly
              Hey Kevin, Should have asked what mount you use but regardless of that usually I calibrate at either .5x or 1x. Version 5.00.041 is fine but yes, check that
              Message 6 of 8 , Jun 2, 2002
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                Hey Kevin,

                Should have asked what mount you use but regardless of that usually I
                calibrate at either .5x or 1x. Version 5.00.041 is fine but yes, check
                that both axis are active. Go to the "Auto Guide Tab" on "Camera
                control" and open "settings". Check that both axis are checked as
                "enabled". Be sure you have good balance of the mount and that cables
                are secure so as not to impede movement. When your attempt to calibrate
                is complete, open the "settings" again and open "Calibration Results" to
                see the graph of how orthogonal your camera is and check the values
                listed in X+, X-, Y+ & Y-. This may not be agreeable to some but I have
                been advised that setting the values all to the highest will result in
                better tracking and take into account any backlash of the mount within
                reason. If you have too much backlash then that needs to be addressed.
                There should be no backlash compensation set for either axis when
                guiding and should be un-necessary if well Polar aligned.

                Best I can advise is try this after you have checked the first
                suggestions. For me it works very well. With the AO7 unit, it is
                un-necessary as the AO7 only needs to know what the orientation is with
                the mount for when it needs to bump the mount. The AO7 will do most of
                the guiding by tilting the mirror for minor changes due to seeing and
                minor guiding problems.

                Hope this makes sense to you. If not, let me know.

                Steve

                -----Original Message-----
                From: ksbtk@... [mailto:ksbtk@...]
                Sent: Sunday, June 02, 2002 5:34 PM
                To: ccd-newastro@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: Re: [ccd-newastro] Help with CCDSoft


                Good afternoon Steve:

                If I understand your first question correctly, it was at the standard
                sidereal rate. I was thinking of increasing it so that when CCDSoft
                slews
                the telescope, it is certain to move the required 10 pixels. What do
                you
                advise with regard to that?

                The star was fairly bright and stood out clearly from the surrounding
                stars.
                I guess I can try an even brighter star.

                I am using version 5.00.041.

                Thanks for your help and thoughts.

                Clear skies,
                Kevin

                From: "Steve Reilly" <sreilly@...>


                > Hey Kevin,
                >
                > What was the tracking rate set for and how bright was the star you
                were
                > trying to calibrate on? It is possible to go to a bright star in the
                > region that you are imaging in to calibrate and then go back to your
                > object and acquire a dimmer star to track on. Also, what version are
                you
                > using?





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              • starmaster08083
                Good afternooon Steve: Good News! I was able to calibrate the mount (EM-200) with CCDSoft on the first try last night. A key, I think, was a brighter guide
                Message 7 of 8 , Jun 3, 2002
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                  Good afternooon Steve:

                  Good News! I was able to calibrate the mount (EM-200) with CCDSoft
                  on the first try last night. A key, I think, was a brighter guide
                  star. From that point on, the autoguiding seemed to go very well. I
                  was able to take 3 minute exposures of M51 at f/12 with no evidence
                  of drift or star elongation. I'll post those images later this week,
                  although conditions were not the best (high clouds) but the purpose
                  of the exercise was to learn to calibrate and autoguide.

                  Thanks to you and Randy for helping me diagnose the problems.

                  Clear skies,
                  Kevin Dixon
                  ksbtk@...


                  --- In ccd-newastro@y..., "Steve Reilly" <sreilly@a...> wrote:
                  > Hey Kevin,
                  >
                  > Should have asked what mount you use but regardless of that usually
                  I
                  > calibrate at either .5x or 1x. Version 5.00.041 is fine but yes,
                  check
                  > that both axis are active. Go to the "Auto Guide Tab" on "Camera
                  > control" and open "settings". Check that both axis are checked as
                  > "enabled". Be sure you have good balance of the mount and that
                  cables
                  > are secure so as not to impede movement. When your attempt to
                  calibrate
                  > is complete, open the "settings" again and open "Calibration
                  Results" to
                  > see the graph of how orthogonal your camera is and check the values
                  > listed in X+, X-, Y+ & Y-. This may not be agreeable to some but I
                  have
                  > been advised that setting the values all to the highest will result
                  in
                  > better tracking and take into account any backlash of the mount
                  within
                  > reason. If you have too much backlash then that needs to be
                  addressed.
                  > There should be no backlash compensation set for either axis when
                  > guiding and should be un-necessary if well Polar aligned.
                  >
                  > Best I can advise is try this after you have checked the first
                  > suggestions. For me it works very well. With the AO7 unit, it is
                  > un-necessary as the AO7 only needs to know what the orientation is
                  with
                  > the mount for when it needs to bump the mount. The AO7 will do most
                  of
                  > the guiding by tilting the mirror for minor changes due to seeing
                  and
                  > minor guiding problems.
                  >
                  > Hope this makes sense to you. If not, let me know.
                • Steve Reilly
                  Glad to hear all went well. It s a bear when there s a problem and bliss when it all comes together. Steve ... From: starmaster08083 [mailto:ksbtk@comcast.net]
                  Message 8 of 8 , Jun 3, 2002
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                    Glad to hear all went well. It's a bear when there's a problem and bliss
                    when it all comes together.

                    Steve

                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: starmaster08083 [mailto:ksbtk@...]
                    Sent: Monday, June 03, 2002 4:15 PM
                    To: ccd-newastro@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [ccd-newastro] Re: Help with CCDSoft


                    Good afternooon Steve:

                    Good News! I was able to calibrate the mount (EM-200) with CCDSoft
                    on the first try last night. A key, I think, was a brighter guide
                    star. From that point on, the autoguiding seemed to go very well. I
                    was able to take 3 minute exposures of M51 at f/12 with no evidence
                    of drift or star elongation. I'll post those images later this week,
                    although conditions were not the best (high clouds) but the purpose
                    of the exercise was to learn to calibrate and autoguide.

                    Thanks to you and Randy for helping me diagnose the problems.

                    Clear skies,
                    Kevin Dixon
                    ksbtk@...


                    --- In ccd-newastro@y..., "Steve Reilly" <sreilly@a...> wrote:
                    > Hey Kevin,
                    >
                    > Should have asked what mount you use but regardless of that usually
                    I
                    > calibrate at either .5x or 1x. Version 5.00.041 is fine but yes,
                    check
                    > that both axis are active. Go to the "Auto Guide Tab" on "Camera
                    > control" and open "settings". Check that both axis are checked as
                    > "enabled". Be sure you have good balance of the mount and that
                    cables
                    > are secure so as not to impede movement. When your attempt to
                    calibrate
                    > is complete, open the "settings" again and open "Calibration
                    Results" to
                    > see the graph of how orthogonal your camera is and check the values
                    > listed in X+, X-, Y+ & Y-. This may not be agreeable to some but I
                    have
                    > been advised that setting the values all to the highest will result
                    in
                    > better tracking and take into account any backlash of the mount
                    within
                    > reason. If you have too much backlash then that needs to be
                    addressed.
                    > There should be no backlash compensation set for either axis when
                    > guiding and should be un-necessary if well Polar aligned.
                    >
                    > Best I can advise is try this after you have checked the first
                    > suggestions. For me it works very well. With the AO7 unit, it is
                    > un-necessary as the AO7 only needs to know what the orientation is
                    with
                    > the mount for when it needs to bump the mount. The AO7 will do most
                    of
                    > the guiding by tilting the mirror for minor changes due to seeing
                    and
                    > minor guiding problems.
                    >
                    > Hope this makes sense to you. If not, let me know.




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