Re: 1st Time RAPAS User


Mar 16, 2014

 


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#43421 Mar 16, 2014

The RAPAS is pretty much dead simple to use once you have a good look at how it fits on the mount and how it gets adjusted for use.You have to:1) Check out in daylight how the RAPAS fits into the mount and where the push-pull screws are located on the RAPAS adapter. In my opinion, this is critical. Look at the mount/adapter/RAPAS, visualize and think about it all for a few seconds to familiarize yourself with the items described while reading through the rest of this diatribe. The following is what you will do in deep dusk or dark.2) Polar align the mount. Use whichever drift method you like, visual or CCD to do it all or to do the finishing touches. The closer the mount is to being polar aligned the better.3) Install the RAPAS in the mount with all three of the spring loaded screws. Wiggle it a slightly as you are tightening the screws to ensure it seats properly. Align the RAPAS with Polaris using the three sets of push pull screws on the outside edge of the adapter that the RAPAS fits into. You will need some sort of method to get the proper position for Polaris. There are three I know of, one for the iPad/iPod/iPhone, one for Android based systems and the utility included with Ray's AP driver. Adjust the tilt of the adapter plate using the three sets of push-pull screws (you will likely only need to use two sets of them) by adjusting one pair at a time. Loosen one of the pair and tighten the other slowly and look through the RAPAS eyepiece as you are doing so to see what is happening. Once you have Polaris in the proper spot, check to be sure it is correct since some time will have passed, make sure the push-pull screws are locked down firmly and check again. Repeat with smaller adjustments as necessary until you are happy it is in the 'right' spot. NEVER touch thee screws again.4) From now on, when you set up, you can roughly align the mount on Polaris by sighting through the hole the RAPAS goes in. Install the RAPAS, get the proper position of Polaris from one of the aforementioned apps and put it in that position using the Alt-Az adjusters on the mount. Your mount will be polar aligned.

---In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, valenzm@...> wrote :

I'm new to this hobby since last August and am a proud owner of an 1100GTO. When I purchased it I also purchased the RAPAS, but didn't find the documentation very comprehensive so haven't used it for no good reason other than I've been learning so much it was just another thing on the list. I'm doing all visual right now, but hope to capture images with my Nikon soon, and with a CCD later this year. I'm also 90% portable, so I set everything up whenever I use it.

In the past I've had such good luck with GOTOs that I haven't felt the urge to break out the RAPAS. I normally start from Park 1 and do a few iterations of a 2-star alignment and hit things in the finder, adjust and am there. Last night I guess I got tired of feeling like I was compromising so decided to use my RAPAS half way through the night. Great, where to start? Not knowing any better, I put the RAPAS in, opened up my IPAD app, and a few adjustments later I was done, I guess. It was quite a bit off. I did a GOTO and it was better than before, but not necessarily in an eyepiece at 80X. I decided to do 2 iterations of a 2-star alignment and I found myself in GOTO utopia. I finished off the night going from Saturn to M13 with my 10mm eyepiece (I forgot to go wide) in my 2500mm CDK. I looked through the finder and it looked great. I looked through the eyepiece, and M13 was just off center. Wow!

What I'd like to ask is what your 2 or 3 step start up routine is when setting up (as in remote) using an RAPAS and your only use is for visual observing. Did I stumble upon the "right" way to go about this? I'm not necessarily trying to get any better GOTOs, just curious.

Thank you in advance,

Mark V



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#44906 Aug 28, 2014

Why AP calls these screws push-pull is beyond me. As far as I am concerned the instructions are not very clear. There is absolutely pull operation with the adjustment screws since there is nothing for the adjustment screws to pull against., A push/pull usually has some sort of spring to do the pulling,.As far as I am concerned three of the screws are just adjustable spacers and the three other screws hold it in place once the spacers are set properly,  They are absolutely not push pull screws, the pulling part of the push/pull operation is you pushing to hold the RAPAS in place while adjusting the spacers. I thought it was very unclear to call them push-pull. Or did I get a bad set of hold down screws that should of has springs to push the RAPAS instead of my hand? As far as I can remember the instruction never told you to loosen the hold down screws. This process of adjusting these screws was not obvious to me.

I though better instructions would be:

Loosen the 3 hold down screws a couple to turns, Press the RAPAS to hold it tight to the Mount, then loosen all 3 set screws, then tighten all 3 set screws just enough to feel some resistance. Then tighten all 3 set screws the exact same number of turns (2 to 3).  This would allow the set screws to adjust the RAPAS in both the in and out direction. (Since my RAPAS was flush with the Mount (no gap)  loosening the set screws had no affect) The key is there needs to be a gap between the RAPAS and Mount base before starting adjustment. Once you have the gap, press the entire assembly with your hand while adjusting the reticle to match the RAPAS app, Once aligned, tighten the 3 hold down screws.



Also if all 6 screws used the same size Allen wrench it would make the task easier instead of trying to keep up with 2 tiny Allen tools in the dark , which was a challenge to me. 



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#44907 Aug 28, 2014

Different strokes for different folks I guess.   As forme, I'm very glad A-P used different sized screws.  If they hadn't I'd havegotten confused as to which one I was adjusting.  By using different sizesI can easily tell which one is the push/pull adjusting screw and which oneisn't.  And the same with the wrenches.  I'm so glad one wrenchdoesn't adjust both -- otherwise I'd have accidentally done the wrongone. As Irecall, I had to read the instructions twice before I "got it."  But thenit was clear and simple.  In general I think A-P's instructions are veryclear.  But perhaps that's because I've been trying to read so manyJapanese or Chinese instructions poorly translated into English that A-P'sinstructions are a breath of fresh air. Woody

WhyAP calls these screws push-pull is beyond me. As far as I am concerned theinstructions are not very clear. There is absolutely pull operation with theadjustment screws since there is nothing for the adjustment screws to pullagainst., A push/pull usually has some sort of spring to do the pulling,.Asfar as I am concerned three of the screws are just adjustable spacers and thethree other screws hold it in place once the spacers are set properly, They are absolutely not push pull screws, the pulling part of thepush/pull operation is you pushing to hold the RAPAS in place while adjustingthe spacers. I thought it was very unclear to call them push-pull. Or did Iget a bad set of hold down screws that should of has springs to push the RAPASinstead of my hand? As far as I can remember the instruction never told you tol! oosen the hold down screws. This process of adjusting these screws was notobvious to me.

Ithough better instructions would be:

Loosenthe 3 hold down screws a couple to turns, Press the RAPAS to hold it tight tothe Mount, then loosen all 3 set screws, then tighten all 3 set screws justenough to feel some resistance. Then tighten all 3 set screws the exact samenumber of turns (2 to 3).  This would ! allow the set screws to adjustthe RAPAS in both the in and out direction. (Since my RAPAS was flush with theMount (no gap)  loosening the set screws had no affect) The key is thereneeds to be a gap between the RAPAS and Mount base before starting adjustment.Once you have the gap, press the entire assembly with your hand whileadjusting the reticle to match the RAPAS app, Once aligned, tighten the 3 holddown screws.



Alsoif all 6 screws used the same size Allen wrench it would make the task easierinstead of trying to keep up with 2 tiny Allen tools in the dark , which was achallenge to me. 







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#44908 Aug 28, 2014

I think of your "hold down screws" as "push screws" and your "set screws" as "pull screws". Tightening "Push" cap screws push the RAPAS plate toward mount base (closing the gap) and tightening "Pull" set screws pull the RAPAS plate away mount base (widening the gap). I think "push/pull" is a correct term. Peter

---In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, castanho@...> wrote :

Why AP calls these screws push-pull is beyond me. As far as I am concerned the instructions are not very clear. There is absolutely pull operation with the adjustment screws since there is nothing for the adjustment screws to pull against., A push/pull usually has some sort of spring to do the pulling,.As far as I am concerned three of the screws are just adjustable spacers and the three other screws hold it in place once the spacers are set properly,  They are absolutely not push pull screws, the pulling part of the push/pull operation is you pushing to hold the RAPAS in place while adjusting the spacers. I thought it was very unclear to call them push-pull. Or did I get a bad set of hold down screws that should of has springs to push the RAPAS instead of my hand? As far as I can remember the instruction never told you to loosen the hold down screws. This process of adjusting these screws was not obvious to me.

I though better instructions would be:

Loosen the 3 hold down screws a couple to turns, Press the RAPAS to hold it tight to the Mount, then loosen all 3 set screws, then tighten all 3 set screws just enough to feel some resistance. Then tighten all 3 set screws the exact same number of turns (2 to 3).  This would allow the set screws to adjust the RAPAS in both the in and out direction. (Since my RAPAS was flush with the Mount (no gap)  loosening the set screws had no affect) The key is there needs to be a gap between the RAPAS and Mount base before starting adjustment. Once you have the gap, press the entire assembly with your hand while adjusting the reticle to match the RAPAS app, Once aligned, tighten the 3 hold down screws.



Also if all 6 screws used the same size Allen wrench it would make the task easier instead of trying to keep up with 2 tiny Allen tools in the dark , which was a challenge to me. 



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#44909 Aug 28, 2014

I don't think the hold down screw are part of the push/pull system, here's why,because you lose the adjustment capability in the out direction when you tighten the hold down screws, In a push/pull configuration there must be something that holds it firmly in place while adjusting but has some give to allow adjustment in both directions such a a spring or your hand, the hold down screws when tightened prevent outward adjustment The hold down screws are for the last step of holding the RAPAS against the mount securely in the final configuration, I tried your method, it didn't work for me  I needed both in/out adjustment, maybe because I don't do this every day. I think 3 springs on the hold down screws would make this truly push/pull and a lot simpler, So you may be technically right ,but  I'm sure there is a better way, no where did the instructions tell you to use the hold down screws as part of the adjustment, Also thumbs on the adjustment screws would be a nice to have, but really needed since this is a one time adjustment.  If the instructions where clear why did I spend over an hour trying to figure out how it was supposed to work. Either I am 1.) stupid or 2) the instructions where not that clear, I vote for option 2.



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#44910 Aug 28, 2014

Regardless it.s difficult to align the RAPAS. It took me three passes over a month to get it to what I think is now pretty perfect. I assume that the reason there aren.t springs is that the adjustment would then drift over time. I found it to be difficult, particularly as I need to wear reading glasses to see the holes and then take them off to see inside the RAPAS on top of having to use two different allen keys, all in the dark. Anyway, cross my fingers I.ve finally got mine working as I want it to. I did an alignment last night and then drifted with Altair when it was near the meridian and it stayed in the .box. of my reticle for 20 minutes at 127 power. So, I.m happy now but gee that was harder than I would have liked. I kept wishing for a helper all the time.Rgrds-Ross  From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2014 7:23 PMTo: ap-gto@yahoogroups.comSubject: [ap-gto] Re: 1st Time RAPAS User



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#44920 Aug 29, 2014

George,  I.ve now seen 4 different Mach 1 users all of whom, including me, have had to adjust the RAPAS from its factory position so I can.t agree with your statement that it.s not really necessary. The only way that I can get a reliable alignment is to back off all the screws, then position the RAPAS while looking into it and then fumble around trying to tighten the three set screws. That.s really hard to do because I can tighten one (the one I left the allen wrench on) but then I have to remove my eye from the RAPAS to find the others in the dark. The best I.ve been able to do is around 3-4 arc minutes of error and I.m not sure that.s any better than the factory alignment. I keep thinking I.m doing something wrong . I wish there was a video I could watch with you starring in it to see how it.s done by a single human being at night!  From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] Sent: Friday, August 29, 2014 8:50 AMTo: ap-gto@yahoogroups.comSubject: RE: [ap-gto] Re: 1st Time RAPAS User



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#44924 Aug 29, 2014

When you order a mount and RAPAS together, is the RAPAS pre-aligned at the factory or is alignment still necessary even if they are purchased together at the same time?

Kyle.



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#44927 Aug 29, 2014

Kyle,  They are separate.  The RAPAS is not adjusted, as there is no way to make that adjustment in the factory.it has to be done the old fashioned way!  G>  Regards,  George  George WhitneyAstro-Physics, Inc.Phone:  815-282-1513Email:  george@...

 From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

Sent: Friday, August 29, 2014 12:44 PM

To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: 1st Time RAPAS User







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#44929 Aug 29, 2014

Thanks George for the quick response, will keep that in mind when my Mach1 arrives in February (hopefully).

Kyle.



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#44930 Aug 29, 2014

Kyle,  You.re most welcome.   Enjoy!

 Regards,  George  George WhitneyAstro-Physics, Inc.Phone:  815-282-1513Email:  george@...

 From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]

Sent: Friday, August 29, 2014 1:09 PM

To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: 1st Time RAPAS User



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#44943 Aug 30, 2014

Just my $.02.

I have a Mach 1 and my RAPAS worked correctly and was properly aligned right out of the box. No adjustment required.



Stuart.


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