Re: [ap-gto] Re: 400 GTO Wanted


May 1, 2000

 


----------------------------

#569 May 1, 2000

I am anxiously awaiting my mount, but am wondering about the Davis

and Sanford aluminum tripod.Is it a good choice or is the wood tripod

a better one, or any other suggestions. i am planning on using a 4

inch refractor for now, but hope to also obtain a 5 inch refractor in

the next year.



----------------------------

#570 May 1, 2000

I don't have the Davis and Sanford aluminum tripod but do use the wooden one and

this

may be more suitable in the long run if you don't get a pier.



Marc Zukoff wrote: >

> I am anxiously awaiting my mount, but am wondering about the Davis

> and Sanford aluminum tripod.Is it a good choice or is the wood tripod

> a better one, or any other suggestions. i am planning on using a 4

> inch refractor for now, but hope to also obtain a 5 inch refractor in

> the next year.

>

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----------------------------

#571 May 1, 2000

I own and use the wood tripod I bought from A-P. It's a bit heavy (I've

taken it with me to Curacao though). However, it's a stable platform for my

Traveler/AP-400 QMD. I have absolutely no regrets about purchasing it.





> I am anxiously awaiting my mount, but am wondering about the Davis

> and Sanford aluminum tripod.Is it a good choice or is the wood tripod

> a better one, or any other suggestions. i am planning on using a 4

> inch refractor for now, but hope to also obtain a 5 inch refractor in

> the next year.



----------------------------

#592 May 10, 2000

I have a 400GTO mount on order right now, and have received an item for

adapting the mount to the Celestron Celestar 8 Deluxe tripod. I think

mountong ring is the same thing Steve is taking about. ADATRI is the

Part No. for this item.



All I had to do was go to the hardware store for the right length bolts

and some nuts.



Chuck Hancock



Steve Leikind wrote: >

> Marc,

>

> One other suggstion is to use the 400 GTO mount with a Meade field

> tripod. This is an especially good options if you happen already to

> have Meade tripod. In order for this to work, you must first obtain

> the special plate that Astro-Physics provides as standard equipment

> with the Davis and Sanford tripod. I believe they sell this

> separately for about $50. I found that this plate adapts the 400

> Mount to my Meade tripod in the same way that works with the Davis

> and Sanford. The holes in the plate and bolts provided with it line

> up exactly with corresonding holes in my Meade tripood.

>

> The Meade tripod is very sturdy and much more robust than the Davis

> and Sanford. It weighs about 20 pounds and is designed to support 8

> - 12" SCT's and their fork mounts having weights between 40-95

> pounds. Note: it is possible that you could use the Celestron field

> tripod in the same way though I do not have first hand experience

> with this.

>

> -Steve

>

> --- In ap-gto@egroups.com, "Marc Zukoff" yooody@a...> wrote:

> > I am anxiously awaiting my mount, but am wondering about the Davis

> > and Sanford aluminum tripod.Is it a good choice or is the wood

> tripod

> > a better one, or any other suggestions. i am planning on using a 4

> > inch refractor for now, but hope to also obtain a 5 inch refractor

> in

> > the next year.

>

---------------

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> more each month? Join beMANY! Our huge buying group gives you Long Distance

> rates which fall monthly, plus an extra $60 in FREE calls!

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---------------



--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



----------------------------

#716 Jul 1, 2000

I am on my way back out to Anza tonight in a moment but wanted to let you,

and maybe the folks at AP know, the 400GTO worked very well. As an aside,

while I have never been to Mount Pinos, the S&T article was a bit harsh on

Anza.



Anyways I used a 400GTO with a 130EDT f/8. I installed the 15DOVE which came

with the scope but oddly enough the scope came from it's previous owner with

a GM8 and Losmandy D series plates as well. I thought Christine was send me

the screws for the 15 inch plate but I misunderstood. There is a flat plate

as well and she sent me the screws for that. As you know, is you use those

cap screws with the dove plate, the sliding bar does not slide. g> So I

order and got some flat head socket screws from McMaster online. I am not

exactly sure how to secure a safety screw to keep the scope from sliding

accidentally, but I was just darn careful when loosening the locks on the

dove plate.



Anyway I secured the rings, still with the 'adaptor blocks' on the bottom of

them, to the sliding bar using one 1 1/2 inch 1/4-20 screw. I don't thing I

need the blocks. If fact they may cause the dreaded 'orthogonality'

problems. Beats me. I followed the manual and setup the wood tripod and

mount with no scope on it and waited for Polaris. I sighted Polaris through

the hole in the RA axis and put the scope on the mount. Whoa! Waaaay outta

balance BIG time and the Dec and RA locks won't hold it. Gotta be REAL

careful and learn where the setup balance points are. I needed both 6 and 9

pound counterweights. Apparently Roland does not believe the locks should be

like vises.g> They are there to provide 'enough friction' when the scope is

balanced. sigh> Later this was to be a real pain as the 4mm Takahashi EP

and the 31mm Terminagler are like the odd couple of EPs when it comes to

mass. 8^)



Okay, so the time of year is right and I can follow the manual! Sight Vega

(I used a 7.5mm EP as I forgot my 6mm illuminated crosshair EP). Back to

Polaris. Whoa! Outta balance and the objective end of the tube headed south

down the Dec axis! Fortunately I was right there. Okay move the tube back a

bit in the rings and start over. Vega, Goto, Polaris. Whoa!g> Not even

within the quickfinder's 2 degree circle! Grunt grunt, wrestle, wrestle and

I moved the tripod, scope and all. Ow! Okay, I _gotta_ balance that tube

some more in declination... g>. Okay Polaris is in the quickfinder, and I

played with the fine adjustments to center Polaris in the EP. Oooooh NOW I

see what Ron Wodaski means about tighten the screws after an azimuth

adjustment! You have to 'lead them' in the EP. 8^| Oh well. What do I care,

I am not imaging. g> Back to Vega. Off by 3 degrees! Back to Polaris, off

by 2.5... I see a trendg>. And so it went for about 6 times. But it did

converged. Cool. It took about 30 to 45 minutes for this 'first timer'.



I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty' problem.

Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man that

looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the complete

dark! I'll take those 'adaptor' blocks off the rings next time and try that

first. Then it'll be an ALL AP setup. So ff I went to quantify that

orthogonality problem. Follow directions... hmm... it's 9:30PDT on

6/30/2000, Arcturus might work just like the directions say. It slewed to

Arcturus. Whallala-be-darned. It's right there! Center it and choose

epsilon. (or was it eta? dunno the manual is downstairs) Whats this? The

scope just move slightly and it center epsilon. Darn! (and it was

dangerously close to the tripod legg>!). Maybe I should have had a safe

zone defined? Or maybe the people who wrote the manual did. Or maybe it was

just too late and both stars were across the meridian. Anyhoo I used Zeta

Herc and Alpha CrB and that worked. What a cool mount. All that movement to

completely the other side and Alpha CrB was in the FOV of the 7.5mm and the

R.A. error was quite small. I'll of course need a crosshair EP to quantify

it. I decided that was *good* enough.



Bottom line was, it was a very accurate mount. I messed up the balance (31mm

T5) and it moved on me in declination once or twice. So I did a N Pole

alignment using the 7.5 and a 1.8x TV barlow and it was as good as I left it

the first time. Then, I left the 7.5 and 1.8x barlow in (249x, 6' FOV) and

slewed to Zeta Boo and was virtually centered. Not bad guys. No HPP mode

needed! g>



The mount was VERY stable. As good or actually IMO better than the GM8. That

tripod is a gem. You can whack it and it damps in second. I rap tested the

tube and it was steady in 1-2 seconds.



Soooo my only buggaboo is the balance thing. I guess I'll just get used to

it. Or I'll have to remember to start using that brass equalizer I bought a

year or two ago.



Clear skies,

Jeff







----------------------------

#717 Jul 2, 2000

Jeff:

I am one such person who received a non-orthogonal mount from

AstroPhysics. You need a lot of time and some patience and DAYLIGHT to

correct this problem. In fact, if you have the light and the time you

might even enjoy it. I devised a daylight correct procedure to do so.

If you ever need this procedure let me know.



Sincerely,

Mike Roth



Incidentally, I sent my sliding bar BACK because I found it too dangerous

to use. The simple flat plate is MUCH better and I have yet to have a

single heart-stopping moment with it and I have a 155.



----------------------------

#718 Jul 2, 2000

In a message dated 7/2/00 5:48:37 AM Eastern Daylight Time, maroth@...

writes:



< I devised a daylight correct procedure to do so.

If you ever need this procedure let me know. >>



Hi Mike,



I also am one such "lucky" person who had a non-ortho mount. If you have

time would you please share your method? Previous efforts of mine have

failed.



Thanks for any help, Peter



----------------------------

#719 Jul 2, 2000

I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty' problem.

> Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man that

> looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the complete

> dark!



Hi Jeff:



You are right, it is frustrating wasting valuable time do orthogonality

at a dark site (if we are at the same dark site I will bring a polar

scope). You may not have as much problem with orthogonality as you

think. Sometimes the alignment procedure does not converge very

rapidly. For visual use, I still think the best way to align is to get

a polar scope, which is rumored to be out soon from AP. For photos,

Roland had some good suggestions which are in message 10 of this group.

Other people use slightly different methods, but I can't remember where

their messages are. Perhaps we should make a FAQ to this group, after

this nearly born child lets me get some sleep...



Derek



----------------------------

#720 Jul 2, 2000

I would like to see your daylight procedure for correcting orthoganol

alignment.



Thanks...Terry Johnson

----- Original Message -----

From: "Michael A. Roth" maroth@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Sunday, July 02, 2000 2:46 AM

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





> Jeff:

> I am one such person who received a non-orthogonal mount from

> AstroPhysics. You need a lot of time and some patience and DAYLIGHT to

> correct this problem. In fact, if you have the light and the time you

> might even enjoy it. I devised a daylight correct procedure to do so.

> If you ever need this procedure let me know.

>

> Sincerely,

> Mike Roth

>

> Incidentally, I sent my sliding bar BACK because I found it too dangerous

> to use. The simple flat plate is MUCH better and I have yet to have a

> single heart-stopping moment with it and I have a 155.

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962531278/

---------------

>

>

>



----------------------------

#721 Jul 2, 2000

"Michael A. Roth" wrote:

> Jeff:

> I am one such person who received a non-orthogonal mount from

> AstroPhysics. You need a lot of time and some patience and DAYLIGHT to

> correct this problem. In fact, if you have the light and the time you

> might even enjoy it. I devised a daylight correct procedure to do so.

> If you ever need this procedure let me know.



Michael,



I need to do this b/c the dp on my C11 is crooked. Could you send me

your procedure?



Regards,

Bob K.



----------------------------

#722 Jul 2, 2000

In a message dated 7/2/00 5:48:37 AM Eastern Daylight Time,

maroth@... > Hi Mike,

> I also am one such "lucky" person who had a non-ortho mount. If you have

> time would you please share your method? Previous efforts of mine have

> failed.



You mean a production defect? Or you are using something with the mount that

is making it 'non-ortho'. Just how bad are we talking? My 400 GTO mount,

when it slewed all the way from one side of the meridian to another still

put the star in question with 3 arc-mins of the other star's position in the

EP. The FOV of the EP was only 6'.



clear skies,

Jeff



----------------------------

#727 Jul 3, 2000

I want a copy also.



-----Original Message-----

From: Terry Johnson [mailto:tjohnson@...]

Sent: Sunday, July 02, 2000 10:12 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





I would like to see your daylight procedure for correcting orthoganol

alignment.



Thanks...Terry Johnson

----- Original Message -----

From: "Michael A. Roth" maroth@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Sunday, July 02, 2000 2:46 AM

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





> Jeff:

> I am one such person who received a non-orthogonal mount from

> AstroPhysics. You need a lot of time and some patience and DAYLIGHT to

> correct this problem. In fact, if you have the light and the time you

> might even enjoy it. I devised a daylight correct procedure to do so.

> If you ever need this procedure let me know.

>

> Sincerely,

> Mike Roth

>

> Incidentally, I sent my sliding bar BACK because I found it too dangerous

> to use. The simple flat plate is MUCH better and I have yet to have a

> single heart-stopping moment with it and I have a 155.

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962531278/

---------------

>

>

>





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---------------







----------------------------

#729 Jul 3, 2000

> I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty' problem.

> > Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man that

> > looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the complete

> > dark!

>



Hi Jeff,



To cut down on the iterations when polar aligning your scope

for each iteration you should only adjust the altitude and azimuth

adjustments to move Polaris half-way to the center of your finder (or

eyepiece when you get sufficiently close). If you put Polaris in

the center each time you will overshoot the correction and it will

take more iterations.



-Ray Gralak



----------------------------

#730 Jul 3, 2000

It's not always the case that half-way will work for you, and I wondered

why. I have a theory, of course g>.



The basis of my theory is this (untested) assumption, but I think it's true:

because the two coordinate systems (alt-az and equatorial) are oriented so

differently, making a change to a single axis (alt or az) can affect

position in the other coordinate system along two axes (RA and Dec).



For example, if one axis (alt or az) is very close to correct, and the other

is not, you should avoid making changes to the one that is close to correct,

and concentrate on getting the other one close to correct, too. I haven't

had to do this kind of polar alignment for several months, so my experience

isn't fresh. I'm currently using a polar scope on an NJP 160, although I

have a 400 GTO coming and will have to re-learn these skills.



But as I recall, if one axis was close, and I made adjustments to two axes

(alt and az), the axis that was close to correct would oscillate

(overshoot). I would then move that axis to the mid position (between the

extremes of the oscillation), and then leave it alone and concentrate on

bringing the other axis close to correct position. Once both were of nearly

equal magnitude, I could then quickly get a good alignment by adjusting both

together.



I have even had situations where I have had to go _double_ the distance,

rather than half the distance, to get aligned in a reasonable number of

iterations. If memory serves, that tended to be the case when I was aligning

to stars on different sides of the meridian, but it has been a while and I'm

not entirely sure.



Ron Wodaski

www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:27 AM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report



> > I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty'

problem. > > Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man

that > > looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the

complete > > dark!

>



Hi Jeff,



To cut down on the iterations when polar aligning your scope

for each iteration you should only adjust the altitude and azimuth

adjustments to move Polaris half-way to the center of your finder (or

eyepiece when you get sufficiently close). If you put Polaris in

the center each time you will overshoot the correction and it will

take more iterations.



-Ray Gralak







---------------

Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962645188/

---------------



----------------------------

#731 Jul 3, 2000

Hi Ron,



Usually the 1/2 way won't work well if the mount is not very level.

In that case, you will get one axis affecting the other. Otherwise it

has always worked quite well for me (30+ times with my 1200). Of course

the OTA has to be close to orthogonal too.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:49 AM

> To: ap-gto@...

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>

>

> It's not always the case that half-way will work for you, and I wondered

> why. I have a theory, of course g>.

>

> The basis of my theory is this (untested) assumption, but I think it's true:

> because the two coordinate systems (alt-az and equatorial) are oriented so

> differently, making a change to a single axis (alt or az) can affect

> position in the other coordinate system along two axes (RA and Dec).

>

> For example, if one axis (alt or az) is very close to correct, and the other

> is not, you should avoid making changes to the one that is close to correct,

> and concentrate on getting the other one close to correct, too. I haven't

> had to do this kind of polar alignment for several months, so my experience

> isn't fresh. I'm currently using a polar scope on an NJP 160, although I

> have a 400 GTO coming and will have to re-learn these skills.

>

> But as I recall, if one axis was close, and I made adjustments to two axes

> (alt and az), the axis that was close to correct would oscillate

> (overshoot). I would then move that axis to the mid position (between the

> extremes of the oscillation), and then leave it alone and concentrate on

> bringing the other axis close to correct position. Once both were of nearly

> equal magnitude, I could then quickly get a good alignment by adjusting both

> together.

>

> I have even had situations where I have had to go _double_ the distance,

> rather than half the distance, to get aligned in a reasonable number of

> iterations. If memory serves, that tended to be the case when I was aligning

> to stars on different sides of the meridian, but it has been a while and I'm

> not entirely sure.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:27 AM

> To: ap-gto@...

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>

>

> > > I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty'

> problem.

> > > Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man

> that

> > > looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the

> complete

> > > dark!

> >

>

> Hi Jeff,

>

> To cut down on the iterations when polar aligning your scope

> for each iteration you should only adjust the altitude and azimuth

> adjustments to move Polaris half-way to the center of your finder (or

> eyepiece when you get sufficiently close). If you put Polaris in

> the center each time you will overshoot the correction and it will

> take more iterations.

>

> -Ray Gralak

>

>

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962645188/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Need a credit card?

> Instant Approval and 0% intro APR with Aria!

> click.egroups.com/1/6034/7/_/3615/_/962646281/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#733 Jul 3, 2000

Thanks for the tip Ray. You know the ortho check talks about moving halfway

as does one of the polar alignment methods IIRC. My manuals are in the mount

case so I can't refer to them right now. But I don't think method number one

(N. Polar Align) calls for half movements. Thanks. I did level the mount

(habit) so I'll give it a try.



Wonder if the manuals are in Word or sompin'. I think I have a PDF writer

printer driver....



Clear skies,

Jeff

----- Original Message -----

From: "Ray Gralak" ray@...>





> Hi Ron,

>

> Usually the 1/2 way won't work well if the mount is not very level.

> In that case, you will get one axis affecting the other. Otherwise it

> has always worked quite well for me (30+ times with my 1200). Of course

> the OTA has to be close to orthogonal too.

>

> -Ray



----------------------------

#734 Jul 3, 2000

The 1200 is also just plain better for polar aligning than the 600 GTO

mount. There isn't much flexure in the 1200, while the 600 has enough to

cause some trouble during polar alignment. I suppose the flexure will depend

on the weight you've got on the mount. And I can't say that I've tested

orthogonality, though my refractor was best for polar aligning; the 9.25"

SCT was hopeless. g>



Ron Wodaski

www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 11:00 AM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





Hi Ron,



Usually the 1/2 way won't work well if the mount is not very level.

In that case, you will get one axis affecting the other. Otherwise it

has always worked quite well for me (30+ times with my 1200). Of course

the OTA has to be close to orthogonal too.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:49 AM

> To: ap-gto@...

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>

>

> It's not always the case that half-way will work for you, and I wondered

> why. I have a theory, of course g>.

>

> The basis of my theory is this (untested) assumption, but I think it's

true: > because the two coordinate systems (alt-az and equatorial) are oriented so

> differently, making a change to a single axis (alt or az) can affect

> position in the other coordinate system along two axes (RA and Dec).

>

> For example, if one axis (alt or az) is very close to correct, and the

other > is not, you should avoid making changes to the one that is close to

correct, > and concentrate on getting the other one close to correct, too. I haven't

> had to do this kind of polar alignment for several months, so my

experience > isn't fresh. I'm currently using a polar scope on an NJP 160, although I

> have a 400 GTO coming and will have to re-learn these skills.

>

> But as I recall, if one axis was close, and I made adjustments to two axes

> (alt and az), the axis that was close to correct would oscillate

> (overshoot). I would then move that axis to the mid position (between the

> extremes of the oscillation), and then leave it alone and concentrate on

> bringing the other axis close to correct position. Once both were of

nearly > equal magnitude, I could then quickly get a good alignment by adjusting

both > together.

>

> I have even had situations where I have had to go _double_ the distance,

> rather than half the distance, to get aligned in a reasonable number of

> iterations. If memory serves, that tended to be the case when I was

aligning > to stars on different sides of the meridian, but it has been a while and

I'm > not entirely sure.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 10:27 AM

> To: ap-gto@...

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>

>

> > > I figured six times meant I might have the dreaded 'orthogonalilty'

> problem.

> > > Now how in @^#$ am I suppose to shim this scope when it's mounted. Man

> that

> > > looks like a non-newmoon night task. I am not gonna try that in the

> complete

> > > dark!

> >

>

> Hi Jeff,

>

> To cut down on the iterations when polar aligning your scope

> for each iteration you should only adjust the altitude and azimuth

> adjustments to move Polaris half-way to the center of your finder (or

> eyepiece when you get sufficiently close). If you put Polaris in

> the center each time you will overshoot the correction and it will

> take more iterations.

>

> -Ray Gralak

>

>

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962645188/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Need a credit card?

> Instant Approval and 0% intro APR with Aria!

> click.egroups.com/1/6034/7/_/3615/_/962646281/

---------------

>

>

>



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----------------------------

#735 Jul 3, 2000

The 1200 is also just plain better for polar aligning than the 600 GTO

> mount. There isn't much flexure in the 1200, while the 600 has enough to

> cause some trouble during polar alignment. I suppose the flexure will depend



Perhaps, but I learned this technique with my old Vixen GP + SS2000+ Tak FS-102.

This mount is much more flexible than a 600g>. It worked great then as long

as the mount was level which was easy to do with the tripod.



-Ray Gralak



----------------------------

#736 Jul 3, 2000

----- Original Message -----

From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

> orthogonality, though my refractor was best for polar aligning; the 9.25"

> SCT was hopeless. g>



Why? Because of the mirror shift I guess? I found that when you tighten the

two azimuth lock screws the mount does shift. Of course there is 40 pounds

or more of stress. I found the movement about 3 to 4 arc-minutes and I could

'lead' them (though a PITA). For imaging you want an alignment as close as

possible if not perfect. But realistically how close is close enough?







Clear skies,

Jeff



BTW: Can you autograph my copy of TNA? vbg>



----------------------------

#737 Jul 3, 2000

In a message dated 7/3/00 1:04:38 PM EST, ray@... writes:



<

Usually the 1/2 way won't work well if the mount is not very level.

In that case, you will get one axis affecting the other. Otherwise it

has always worked quite well for me (30+ times with my 1200). Of course

the OTA has to be close to orthogonal too.



-Ray >>



okay, i've been doing this, but didn't realize about it needing to be level,

thanks



----------------------------

#738 Jul 3, 2000

I have never really tried to level the AP mount prior to polar aligning.

I'll have to see if that makes a difference. I took literally the advice

that leveling wasn't "necessary," but perhaps it is desirable. g>



Ron Wodaski

www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 11:48 AM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report



> The 1200 is also just plain better for polar aligning than the 600 GTO

> mount. There isn't much flexure in the 1200, while the 600 has enough to

> cause some trouble during polar alignment. I suppose the flexure will

depend



Perhaps, but I learned this technique with my old Vixen GP + SS2000+ Tak

FS-102.

This mount is much more flexible than a 600g>. It worked great then as long

as the mount was level which was easy to do with the tripod.



-Ray Gralak



---------------

Free Worldwide Calling with Firetalk!

Click Here:

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---------------



----------------------------

#739 Jul 3, 2000

You can actually get some advantages from not being perfectly polar aligned.

You can cover backlash in Dec, for example, by deliberately mis-aligning so

that the mount is always pushing the Dec in one direction, so that you never

encounter the backlash.



Have you seen my page on the "bat wing" handles for the az lockdowns on the

600? I also am using Mylar washers to reduce friction, so that I can tighten

the az lockdowns and still move the mount well enough. I may have some of

those around, if you can't find the washers at your local hardware store.



Ron Wodaski

www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky [mailto:myrocketcatos@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 11:56 AM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





----- Original Message -----

From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

> orthogonality, though my refractor was best for polar aligning; the 9.25"

> SCT was hopeless. g>



Why? Because of the mirror shift I guess? I found that when you tighten the

two azimuth lock screws the mount does shift. Of course there is 40 pounds

or more of stress. I found the movement about 3 to 4 arc-minutes and I could

'lead' them (though a PITA). For imaging you want an alignment as close as

possible if not perfect. But realistically how close is close enough?







Clear skies,

Jeff



BTW: Can you autograph my copy of TNA? vbg>







---------------

Was the salesman clueless? Productopia has the answers.

click.egroups.com/1/4633/7/_/3615/_/962650430/

---------------



----------------------------

#740 Jul 3, 2000

Ron I had those 'bat handles' on order and delivered before the mount

arrived! I just thought I'd try it 'stock' first in case there was a problem

and it had to be returned. Remember who 'suggested' them? ;^D



Thanks for the tip about pushing the Dec to take up the gear backlash. But I

am not planning to start imaging for awhile (he saysg>). Too many things to

see with my eyes first. Besides I am waiting for the FSQ156 and my AP900GTO

first.



Clear skies,

Jeff



----- Original Message -----

From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

To: ap-gto@...>

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 12:12 PM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





> You can actually get some advantages from not being perfectly polar

aligned.

> You can cover backlash in Dec, for example, by deliberately mis-aligning

so

> that the mount is always pushing the Dec in one direction, so that you

never

> encounter the backlash.

>

> Have you seen my page on the "bat wing" handles for the az lockdowns on

the

> 600? I also am using Mylar washers to reduce friction, so that I can

tighten

> the az lockdowns and still move the mount well enough. I may have some of

> those around, if you can't find the washers at your local hardware store.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky [mailto:myrocketcatos@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 11:56 AM

> To: ap-gto@...

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>

>

>

> ----- Original Message -----

> From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

> > orthogonality, though my refractor was best for polar aligning; the

9.25"

> > SCT was hopeless. g>

>

> Why? Because of the mirror shift I guess? I found that when you tighten

the

> two azimuth lock screws the mount does shift. Of course there is 40 pounds

> or more of stress. I found the movement about 3 to 4 arc-minutes and I

could

> 'lead' them (though a PITA). For imaging you want an alignment as close as

> possible if not perfect. But realistically how close is close enough?

>

>

>

> Clear skies,

> Jeff

>

> BTW: Can you autograph my copy of TNA? vbg>

>

>

>

---------------

> Was the salesman clueless? Productopia has the answers.

> click.egroups.com/1/4633/7/_/3615/_/962650430/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Explore the popular High-End Room -

> Go To Where The Smart People Shop-uBid.com

> click.egroups.com/1/6141/7/_/3615/_/962651290/

---------------

>

>







----------------------------

#741 Jul 3, 2000

I have gotten much better results when leveling the 400goto. When leveling

and using an ap polar scope, the mount guides much easier and more

accurately.

Brian

>>-----Original Message-----

>>From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

>>Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 2:09 PM

>>To: ap-gto@...

>>Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>>

>>

>>I have never really tried to level the AP mount prior to

>>polar aligning.

>>I'll have to see if that makes a difference. I took literally

>>the advice

>>that leveling wasn't "necessary," but perhaps it is desirable. g>

>>

>>Ron Wodaski

>>www.newastro.com

>>

>>

>>

>>-----Original Message-----

>>From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

>>Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 11:48 AM

>>To: ap-gto@...

>>Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>>

>>

>>> The 1200 is also just plain better for polar aligning than

>>the 600 GTO

>>> mount. There isn't much flexure in the 1200, while the 600

>>has enough to

>>> cause some trouble during polar alignment. I suppose the

>>flexure will

>>depend

>>

>>Perhaps, but I learned this technique with my old Vixen GP +

>>SS2000+ Tak

>>FS-102.

>>This mount is much more flexible than a 600g>. It worked

>>great then as long

>>as the mount was level which was easy to do with the tripod.

>>

>>-Ray Gralak

>>

---------------

>>----------

>>Free Worldwide Calling with Firetalk!

>>Click Here:

>>click.egroups.com/1/5481/7/_/3615/_/962650079/

---------------

>>----------

>>

>>

>>

>>

---------------

>>----------

>>Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to

>>the rescue.

>>click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/962651119/

---------------

>>----------

>>

>>



----------------------------

#742 Jul 3, 2000

Hi Ron,

I've been using those "bat wing" handles from McMaster Carr now for a couple

of weeks and can't get over how much nicer it is to use them over the OEM

set-up.

Along with the Mylar washers and AP stainless steel washer, I'm still using

a wave washer which I think helps to smooth/steady out the adjustments one

step further. When turning the azimuth knobs the star moves in a straight

line now and doesn't shift when a snug down the "bat handle". Definitely

makes getting polar aligned much easier without the hassle of using the

Allen wrenches.

Stephen



-----Original Message-----

From: Ron Wodaski ronw@...>

To: ap-gto@... ap-gto@...>

Date: Monday, July 03, 2000 2:08 PM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>Have you seen my page on the "bat wing" handles for the az lockdowns on the

>600? I also am using Mylar washers to reduce friction, so that I can

tighten >the az lockdowns and still move the mount well enough. I may have some of

>those around, if you can't find the washers at your local hardware store.

>

>Ron Wodaski

>www.newastro.com



----------------------------

#743 Jul 3, 2000

Hi Jeff,

Yes, thanks for the suggestion. Its the only way to fly......I mean slew!!!

Stephen



-----Original Message-----

From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky myrocketcatos@...>

To: ap-gto@... ap-gto@...>

Date: Monday, July 03, 2000 2:37 PM

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report



>Ron I had those 'bat handles' on order and delivered before the mount

>arrived! I just thought I'd try it 'stock' first in case there was a

problem >and it had to be returned. Remember who 'suggested' them? ;^D

>

>Thanks for the tip about pushing the Dec to take up the gear backlash. But

I >am not planning to start imaging for awhile (he saysg>). Too many things

to >see with my eyes first. Besides I am waiting for the FSQ156 and my AP900GTO

>first.

>

>Clear skies,

>Jeff

>



----------------------------

#744 Jul 3, 2000

Where do I get those bat wings? Where is McMaster Carr?



-----Original Message-----

From: Stephen E. Russell [mailto:sjruss55@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 12:50 PM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





Hi Ron,

I've been using those "bat wing" handles from McMaster Carr now for a couple

of weeks and can't get over how much nicer it is to use them over the OEM

set-up.

Along with the Mylar washers and AP stainless steel washer, I'm still using

a wave washer which I think helps to smooth/steady out the adjustments one

step further. When turning the azimuth knobs the star moves in a straight

line now and doesn't shift when a snug down the "bat handle". Definitely

makes getting polar aligned much easier without the hassle of using the

Allen wrenches.

Stephen



-----Original Message-----

From: Ron Wodaski ronw@...>

To: ap-gto@... ap-gto@...>

Date: Monday, July 03, 2000 2:08 PM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>Have you seen my page on the "bat wing" handles for the az lockdowns on the

>600? I also am using Mylar washers to reduce friction, so that I can

tighten >the az lockdowns and still move the mount well enough. I may have some of

>those around, if you can't find the washers at your local hardware store.

>

>Ron Wodaski

>www.newastro.com







---------------

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Host your next egroup meeting live on Firetalk.

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---------------







----------------------------

#745 Jul 3, 2000

I have a page on AP 600 mods at:



www.wodaski.com/wodaski/ap600clamp.htm



There is a link on that page that takes you right to the McMaster-Carr

catalog page:



www.mcmaster-carr.com/cgi/loadpage.cgi?pagenum=1870&catnum=106



You will need to have the Adobe Acrobat reader installed to view the catalog

pages, but if you don't, there is a link to download the Acrobat Reader on

the McMaster-Carr page.



Ron Wodaski

www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Mark B. Wilson [mailto:Markw@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 3:59 PM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





Where do I get those bat wings? Where is McMaster Carr?



-----Original Message-----

From: Stephen E. Russell [mailto:sjruss55@...]

Sent: Monday, July 03, 2000 12:50 PM

To: ap-gto@...

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report





Hi Ron,

I've been using those "bat wing" handles from McMaster Carr now for a couple

of weeks and can't get over how much nicer it is to use them over the OEM

set-up.

Along with the Mylar washers and AP stainless steel washer, I'm still using

a wave washer which I think helps to smooth/steady out the adjustments one

step further. When turning the azimuth knobs the star moves in a straight

line now and doesn't shift when a snug down the "bat handle". Definitely

makes getting polar aligned much easier without the hassle of using the

Allen wrenches.

Stephen



-----Original Message-----

From: Ron Wodaski ronw@...>

To: ap-gto@... ap-gto@...>

Date: Monday, July 03, 2000 2:08 PM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] 400 GTO First report

>Have you seen my page on the "bat wing" handles for the az lockdowns on the

>600? I also am using Mylar washers to reduce friction, so that I can

tighten >the az lockdowns and still move the mount well enough. I may have some of

>those around, if you can't find the washers at your local hardware store.

>

>Ron Wodaski

>www.newastro.com







---------------

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Host your next egroup meeting live on Firetalk.

Click here!

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----------------------------

#959 Jul 13, 2000

I just could not wait one more day so I decided to pay the IL state sales

tax and pick-up the 400GTO at AP today.



Well, it looks like a partially clear night and a very good weekend is in

store, so I just wanted to get started and learn the ins and outs.



Christmas in July!



What a beautiful piece of engineering!



I purchased the 48" pier, two 9 pound counter weights, a couple of 8"

dovetail plates, various slider bars, Parallax Rings, etc.



The Genesis SDF looks perfectly "at home" on the mount. I am very impressed

with the smoothness and noise volume of the motors when slewing. It is so

quiet compared to my LX-200.



I did some Solar observing this afternoon. There was a fair amount of

activity.



It is awfully hard to see the display in daylight. I don't think this will

be a big problem for me as I much prefer nighttime astronomy! Besides, I

just manually moved to the Sun and it tracked very well for not being

precisely polar aligned.



A very happy day here in the Midwest!



Now, back to that practice session in the living room....



--

Clear Skies!



Mark Jenkins

markj@...

www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/



----------------------------

#966 Jul 13, 2000

Wow! I am impressed to say the least.



It took me about 15 minutes to "learn" what I had done wrong in the setup.

Really stupid things like:



swapping the longitude and latitude settings. DUH!



hooking the Y adapter cables into the wrong axis. I figured the shorter one

would go on the RA drive and set this up properly this afternoon but for

some weird reason I reversed them tonight. DUH!



After that and figuring out that I had to move the telescope by hand before

selecting Vega, I was polar aligned good enough for visual in about 10

minutes. I was amazed that it only took about 5 or 6 iterations between Vega

and Polaris and both were falling into the center of the Nagler T5 real

nice. I increased the accuracy by using my Meade 9mm Illuminated reticle

eyepiece another 2 or 3 iterations and bang!



I remembered to only make the adjustment toward center about halfway during

each iteration.



First object:



M13 - placed right in the middle of the fov

M92 - centered in a 6mm Radian!



Took time to increase mag on both and study for some time. I knew the moon

would blow away any chance at the faint fuzzy objects so I basically stayed

with these two globulars.



Waited for the moon to rise above the trees to the south but some pretty

menacing clouds rolled in so I decided to pack it in for the night. Besides,

I have to work tomorrow!



It was worth the wait.



Oh yeah, I almost forgot. I got DSV working on my PowerMac G4/400Mhz under

Virtual PC 3.0 with Windows98. Voice recognition works great with the Apple

Plain Talk Mic and the IBM ViaVoice Headset. Having a little trouble getting

the mic to work on my PowerBook but I'm sure I will figure that out soon.

Now I just need to make that serial cable!



--

Clear Skies!



Mark Jenkins

markj@...

www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/







----------------------------

#982 Jul 15, 2000

I had the AP 400 out for first light last night. The scope was a Takahashi

FSQ-106, and I had my ST-8E mounted on the scope for imaging. I used my Tak

7x50 finder for polar aligning (it's much easier to make a finder orthogonal

g>). Here's how it went:



* Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

controller and start over both times. I reduced slewing speed to 900x and

balanced the scope in Dec a little more carefully (I moved it about 1/4"

leaving just the slightest imbalance to the east). The problem did not recur

after these adjustments.



* I had had some trouble polar aligning my AP 600 GTO. It was my impression

that the problems were the result of flexure, about which I've previously

given feedback to Marj. It initially appeared that I was having a repeat of

these problems, but that turned out not to be the case. I did an alignment

using Polaris and Altair, which went pretty smoothly. But when I went to

Deneb, I was _way_ off. Several degrees off; I should have been spot on. I

used the camera to image the area around Polaris, and eventually I realized

that I had positioned the mount so that Polaris was temporarily hidden

behind a branch, and wasn't visible through the finder though it was visible

through the scope. I was pointing at the next star toward the bowl of the

little dipper! blush> When I dragged the mount over a foot or so, so that I

could see Polaris in the finder, I achieved a superb alignment in three

iterations.



* For the rest of the night, objects in the eastern hemisphere were

consistently within a couple of arc-minutes of exactly the same spot on the

CCD chip.



In other words, I didn't have the 8-12 iterations I had come to expect with

the 600; I had results more like what I've seen folks get with the 1200.



As for using the finder, not the scope, to do polar alignment, if you

haven't tried using a high-end finder for polar alignment, you're missing

out. g> I used to do alignment with a 12mm illuminated reticle Plossl

through the main scope, but a quality finder works much better for the early

stages (wide field of view); has much better eye relief; and if the reticle

is really finely etched, with an open spot where the crosshairs would meet,

you can be amazingly accurate despite the low power. But I think the real

positive about using a good finder is that you can easily adjust for

adequate orthogonality.



To confirm polar alignment, I took a 5-minute image at 530mm focal length;

star trailing was barely detectable and was easily guided out during longer

exposures.



Overall, I'm more pleased with the 400 GTO than I was with the 600 GTO;

perhaps it's just my adjusted expectations -- I expected the 600 to handle

30 pounds, and it could never quite do that for me every time. The 400 is

carrying about 20 pounds, and does it very well; the mount was never an

issue during a five-hour imaging session after I figured out the initial

operator error. g>



About the only thing that bothered me (OK, you knew it was coming) was that

the clutches on the 400 don't hold the mount very tightly. If I bump the

mount, it's going to move. I do mostly imaging, so it's not much of a

problem (I'm sitting in the house most of the time!). But I have to set up

the mount in a confined location to see Polaris, and I bumped it 2-3 times

initially while moving around in close quarters.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com



----------------------------

#987 Jul 15, 2000

In a message dated 7/15/00 5:26:52 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:

> I expected the 600 to handle

> 30 pounds, and it could never quite do that for me every time.



Ron, could you be more specific about this. Is this with respect to CCD

imaging or something else?



Is it related to the "flexure" you mentioned earlier in your post? I missed

your discussion of flexure and the response from Marj.



Peter



----------------------------

#989 Jul 15, 2000

The flexure discussion was in person with Roland and Marj, not here. It was

my impression that polar alignment problems I had with the 600 were caused

by fairly large changes in the position of the scope as you tighten down the

alt and az axes. I have a web page on my site that describes some fixes for

this problem:



www.wodaski.com/wodaski/ap600clamp.htm



I had two scopes that I wanted to use on the AP 600 GTO; I had used them

both successfully with two prior AP 600E QMD mounts:



* Celestron 9.25" SCT

* Takahashi FC-125 5" F/8 refractor



The mount went back to AP two times for adjustments. The first time, the RA

motor was replaced to solve a problem with the mount freezing up when

slewing in certain directions. The second time, the hand controller firmware

was upgraded, and the gearing from motor to worm was changed to yield a

slower slewing rate (presumable for better torque).



After these fixes, the mount was reasonably reliable slewing with the

FC-125. On cold nights, I continued to have some problems with the mount

stalling out, even when well balanced. The C9.25 never was an acceptable

load for the mount, for reasons I really can't fathom -- it's not really any

heavier than the FC-125, and it has shorter tube. Nonetheless, I decided to

sell the AP 600 GTO in favor of a Takahashi NJP, which has a higher load

rating. The 900 was not available to me or I would have considered it. The

basic problem was that the mount would stall during slewing unless I went to

a speed so slow that it was driving me crazy waiting. g>



I purchased the AP 400 GTO to use with smaller scopes, especially for

imaging with a 4" refractor (FSQ-106).



Ron Wodaski

Anacortes Telescope & Wild Bird - www.buytelescopes.com

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: steppzimmr@... [mailto:steppzimmr@...]

Sent: Saturday, July 15, 2000 3:09 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/15/00 5:26:52 PM Eastern Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:

> I expected the 600 to handle

> 30 pounds, and it could never quite do that for me every time.



Ron, could you be more specific about this. Is this with respect to CCD

imaging or something else?



Is it related to the "flexure" you mentioned earlier in your post? I missed

your discussion of flexure and the response from Marj.



Peter



---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963698947/

---------------







----------------------------

#991 Jul 15, 2000

I am curious, now. What does a C9.25 OTA weigh (on Earth, Ron g>)?



I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9 1/4", but

I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the mount?

> I had two scopes that I wanted to use on the AP 600 GTO; I had used them

> both successfully with two prior AP 600E QMD mounts:

>

> * Celestron 9.25" SCT

--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



----------------------------

#992 Jul 15, 2000

The C9.25 weighs about 21 pounds. With all the gear I used on it (finder,

CCD camera, color filter wheel, etc.) it was right around 30 pounds.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Chuck Hancock [mailto:cdh59@...]

Sent: Saturday, July 15, 2000 3:49 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





I am curious, now. What does a C9.25 OTA weigh (on Earth, Ron g>)?



I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9 1/4", but

I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the mount?

> I had two scopes that I wanted to use on the AP 600 GTO; I had used them

> both successfully with two prior AP 600E QMD mounts:

>

> * Celestron 9.25" SCT

--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



---------------

Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/963701351/

---------------



----------------------------

#994 Jul 15, 2000

Right on Mark!! I take it you're one happy camper. I checked with

Marj

regarding the necessary accessories I'll need for using my Vixen on

the 400 and all seems to be "go" and shortly, I'll have "lift off"!

;^) I think I'll have figured everything out before the 130mm

notification arrives....I just got on the list earlier this year.

That

should REALLY be sweet. Enjoy and keep us posted.



Best regards,

Bill



--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, Mark Jenkins markj@p...> wrote:

> Wow! I am impressed to say the least.

>

> It took me about 15 minutes to "learn" what I had done wrong in the

setup.

> Really stupid things like:

>

> swapping the longitude and latitude settings. DUH!

>

> hooking the Y adapter cables into the wrong axis. I figured the

shorter one

> would go on the RA drive and set this up properly this afternoon

but

for

> some weird reason I reversed them tonight. DUH!

>

> After that and figuring out that I had to move the telescope by

hand

before

> selecting Vega, I was polar aligned good enough for visual in about

10

> minutes. I was amazed that it only took about 5 or 6 iterations

between Vega

> and Polaris and both were falling into the center of the Nagler T5

real

> nice. I increased the accuracy by using my Meade 9mm Illuminated

reticle

> eyepiece another 2 or 3 iterations and bang!

>

> I remembered to only make the adjustment toward center about

halfway

during

> each iteration.

>

> First object:

>

> M13 - placed right in the middle of the fov

> M92 - centered in a 6mm Radian!

>

> Took time to increase mag on both and study for some time. I knew

the moon

> would blow away any chance at the faint fuzzy objects so I

basically

stayed

> with these two globulars.

>

> Waited for the moon to rise above the trees to the south but some

pretty

> menacing clouds rolled in so I decided to pack it in for the night.

Besides,

> I have to work tomorrow!

>

> It was worth the wait.

>

> Oh yeah, I almost forgot. I got DSV working on my PowerMac

G4/400Mhz

under

> Virtual PC 3.0 with Windows98. Voice recognition works great with

the Apple

> Plain Talk Mic and the IBM ViaVoice Headset. Having a little

trouble

getting

> the mic to work on my PowerBook but I'm sure I will figure that out

soon.

> Now I just need to make that serial cable!

>

> --

> Clear Skies!

>

> Mark Jenkins

> markj@p...

> www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/



----------------------------

#996 Jul 15, 2000

on 7/15/00 6:43 PM, Bill Becker at bbe51@... wrote:

> Right on Mark!! I take it you're one happy camper. I checked with

> Marj

> regarding the necessary accessories I'll need for using my Vixen on

> the 400 and all seems to be "go" and shortly, I'll have "lift off"!

> ;^) I think I'll have figured everything out before the 130mm

> notification arrives....I just got on the list earlier this year.

> That

> should REALLY be sweet. Enjoy and keep us posted.



I will keep you posted. Now if this full moon would stop ruining the clear

skies around here... ;-)



I am anxious to start my dso ccd work with my new setup. Tonight we will be

doing visual. I would normally stay inside on a full moon night but the

400GTO is calling me.... ;-)



--

Mark







----------------------------

#1002 Jul 16, 2000

Ron wrote:

> As for using the finder, not the scope, to do polar

> alignment, if you haven't tried using a high-end finder

> for polar alignment, you're missing out.



It's even easier to do with a 1x finder. I use a Televue Starbeam to make

coarse (almost dead-on) adjustments and the final adjustments through the

telescope with a high power (5mm) ocular that has cross hairs.

> I expected the 600 to handle 30 pounds, and it could

> never quite do that for me every time.



Hmm... In the first place, what exactly are we including in the 30 lb.

total? Is that including the counter balancing weights and shaft, or only

the load contributed by the telescope, camera and other accessories?



My 600E GTO carries at least 45 lbs *total weight* without balking in the

least... that includes the following: an AP 130 mm f6, (15 lbs.) a JMI

NGF-S motorized focuser attached to an ST-8e camera with a color

filter-wheel (5 lbs.), a Starbeam 1 x finder and an extra top plate (1.5

lb.), my adapted declination-axis balancing system (3.5 lbs.), two 9 lb.

counter weights and the counter weight bar (20 lbs.). That does not include

the slight extra weight, or the drag, from the cables running from the

telescope and camera to the computer and power sources.



If one subtracts the counter weights and shaft, than my 600E GTO only

carries a load of about 25 lbs. plus the cables. It slews (at 1200 x) and

tracks incredibly well... without the slightest hesitation.



For those of you who have not seen the dec. balancing system I use, and

love, take a look at it

home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity/equipment/decbar.html It

makes it a breeze to switch back and forth between visual and photographic

use of the telescope without losing polar alignment, and without having to

fuss with that horrid (sorry Roland) sliding bar.



Speaking of the sliding bar, an even better dec. balancing system than the

sliding bar would be a sliding bar on a rack and pinion system. That would

allow fine and *easy* control of dec. axis balance without having to place

the scope in a north-south (or vice versa) configuration and then hoping

that you didn't knock things out of alignment while shifting the position of

the telescope.



Larry

kldenmark@...

home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity



----------------------------

#1003 Jul 16, 2000

Larry

I thought of manufacturing a line of mounts once, then I decided that AP

couldn't be beat and gave up. Anyway, while I was thinking about how I'd do it I

thought up this idea for a movable dec. counterbalance system that would use a

threaded rod that would be hooked to the dec. counterbalance, so one could turn

a small crank which would move the balance weight to the desired point along the

dovetail and then be locked down. Threaded rod is much less expensive than racks

and pinions and can be had in long lengths. It would work just like the lead

screw on a milling machine.



Larry Denmark wrote:

> Ron wrote:

>

> > As for using the finder, not the scope, to do polar

> > alignment, if you haven't tried using a high-end finder

> > for polar alignment, you're missing out.

>

> It's even easier to do with a 1x finder. I use a Televue Starbeam to make

> coarse (almost dead-on) adjustments and the final adjustments through the

> telescope with a high power (5mm) ocular that has cross hairs.

>

> > I expected the 600 to handle 30 pounds, and it could

> > never quite do that for me every time.

>

> Hmm... In the first place, what exactly are we including in the 30 lb.

> total? Is that including the counter balancing weights and shaft, or only

> the load contributed by the telescope, camera and other accessories?

>

> My 600E GTO carries at least 45 lbs *total weight* without balking in the

> least... that includes the following: an AP 130 mm f6, (15 lbs.) a JMI

> NGF-S motorized focuser attached to an ST-8e camera with a color

> filter-wheel (5 lbs.), a Starbeam 1 x finder and an extra top plate (1.5

> lb.), my adapted declination-axis balancing system (3.5 lbs.), two 9 lb.

> counter weights and the counter weight bar (20 lbs.). That does not include

> the slight extra weight, or the drag, from the cables running from the

> telescope and camera to the computer and power sources.

>

> If one subtracts the counter weights and shaft, than my 600E GTO only

> carries a load of about 25 lbs. plus the cables. It slews (at 1200 x) and

> tracks incredibly well... without the slightest hesitation.

>

> For those of you who have not seen the dec. balancing system I use, and

> love, take a look at it

> home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity/equipment/decbar.html It

> makes it a breeze to switch back and forth between visual and photographic

> use of the telescope without losing polar alignment, and without having to

> fuss with that horrid (sorry Roland) sliding bar.

>

> Speaking of the sliding bar, an even better dec. balancing system than the

> sliding bar would be a sliding bar on a rack and pinion system. That would

> allow fine and *easy* control of dec. axis balance without having to place

> the scope in a north-south (or vice versa) configuration and then hoping

> that you didn't knock things out of alignment while shifting the position of

> the telescope.

>

> Larry

> kldenmark@...

> home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963756506/

---------------



--

Greg Mueller



I killed Kenny, m'kay?







----------------------------

#1006 Jul 16, 2000

I didn't realize you were including the counterweights in your total weight;

my 30 pou8nd total included only scope and accessories. The scope I had

trouble with was five pounds heavier than yours, and my total was five

pounds more than yours (30 versus 25).



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Larry Denmark [mailto:kldenmark@...]

Sent: Sunday, July 16, 2000 7:08 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: [ap-gto] Re: AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Ron wrote:

> As for using the finder, not the scope, to do polar

> alignment, if you haven't tried using a high-end finder

> for polar alignment, you're missing out.



It's even easier to do with a 1x finder. I use a Televue Starbeam to make

coarse (almost dead-on) adjustments and the final adjustments through the

telescope with a high power (5mm) ocular that has cross hairs.

> I expected the 600 to handle 30 pounds, and it could

> never quite do that for me every time.



Hmm... In the first place, what exactly are we including in the 30 lb.

total? Is that including the counter balancing weights and shaft, or only

the load contributed by the telescope, camera and other accessories?



My 600E GTO carries at least 45 lbs *total weight* without balking in the

least... that includes the following: an AP 130 mm f6, (15 lbs.) a JMI

NGF-S motorized focuser attached to an ST-8e camera with a color

filter-wheel (5 lbs.), a Starbeam 1 x finder and an extra top plate (1.5

lb.), my adapted declination-axis balancing system (3.5 lbs.), two 9 lb.

counter weights and the counter weight bar (20 lbs.). That does not include

the slight extra weight, or the drag, from the cables running from the

telescope and camera to the computer and power sources.



If one subtracts the counter weights and shaft, than my 600E GTO only

carries a load of about 25 lbs. plus the cables. It slews (at 1200 x) and

tracks incredibly well... without the slightest hesitation.



For those of you who have not seen the dec. balancing system I use, and

love, take a look at it

home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity/equipment/decbar.html It

makes it a breeze to switch back and forth between visual and photographic

use of the telescope without losing polar alignment, and without having to

fuss with that horrid (sorry Roland) sliding bar.



Speaking of the sliding bar, an even better dec. balancing system than the

sliding bar would be a sliding bar on a rack and pinion system. That would

allow fine and *easy* control of dec. axis balance without having to place

the scope in a north-south (or vice versa) configuration and then hoping

that you didn't knock things out of alignment while shifting the position of

the telescope.



Larry

kldenmark@...

home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity









---------------

Win $25,000 Today!

click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963756506/

---------------



----------------------------

#1007 Jul 16, 2000

Nice solution. I had thought of something more complicated.





From: Larry Denmark

[snip] > For those of you who have not seen the dec. balancing system I use, and

> love, take a look at it

> home.att.net/~kldenmark/towardinfinity/equipment/decbar.html It

> makes it a breeze to switch back and forth between visual and photographic

> use of the telescope without losing polar alignment, and without having to

> fuss with that horrid (sorry Roland) sliding bar.

>

> Speaking of the sliding bar, an even better dec. balancing system than the

> sliding bar would be a sliding bar on a rack and pinion system. That

would > allow fine and *easy* control of dec. axis balance without having to place

> the scope in a north-south (or vice versa) configuration and then hoping

> that you didn't knock things out of alignment while shifting the position

of > the telescope.



----------------------------

#1008 Jul 16, 2000

----- Original Message -----

From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

> About the only thing that bothered me (OK, you knew it was coming) was

that

> the clutches on the 400 don't hold the mount very tightly. If I bump the

> mount, it's going to move. I do mostly imaging, so it's not much of a

> problem (I'm sitting in the house most of the time!). But I have to set up

> the mount in a confined location to see Polaris, and I bumped it 2-3 times

> initially while moving around in close quarters.



Hi Ron, I dredged this up from my first night report on the 400GTO with my

130EDT f/8 on it.



-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Whoa! Waaaay outta

balance BIG time and the Dec and RA locks won't hold it. Gotta be REAL

careful and learn where the setup balance points are. I needed both 6 and 9

pound counterweights. Apparently Roland does not believe the locks should be

like vises.g> They are there to provide 'enough friction' when the scope is

balanced. sigh> Later this was to be a real pain as the 4mm Takahashi EP

and the 31mm Terminagler are like the odd couple of EPs when it comes to

mass. 8^)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=





So mine is just like yours. Which pretty much means this is how AP wants

them to be when they leave the factory. I have the feeling Roland feels our

setups ought be well balanced and that being able to tighten down the locks

to the point they are truly locked is bad or will present other problems.

Probably because he has traced quite a few 'problems' people were having

with AP mounts to poor balance.(??) My problem came when switching from a

Terminagler to a something like a Tak ortho. It's something on the order of

a pound difference. And that far out from the pivot point... well the

results were ugly.g> I'll be using that 'equalizer' slug I bought from

Uncle Al as my '1.25 adapter' from now on!! But I agree it's awful easy to

move the scope after the axis' are 'locked'. Is that the same as the

600/900/1200??



Ummm... Roland can you sorta confirm or deny my 'theory'?



Clear skies,

Jeff







----------------------------

#1009 Jul 16, 2000

I was able to get the AP 600 GTO to lock down more securely. The 400 came

with a hot pink sheet of paper warning against over-tightening of the

clutches. Since they don't tighten very much, the temptation to bear down on

them is extreme. I would be hosed if I tried to line up the scope with an

eyepiece and then put the camera on; could not be done.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky [mailto:myrocketcatos@...]

Sent: Sunday, July 16, 2000 11:14 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





----- Original Message -----

From: "Ron Wodaski" ronw@...>

> About the only thing that bothered me (OK, you knew it was coming) was

that

> the clutches on the 400 don't hold the mount very tightly. If I bump the

> mount, it's going to move. I do mostly imaging, so it's not much of a

> problem (I'm sitting in the house most of the time!). But I have to set up

> the mount in a confined location to see Polaris, and I bumped it 2-3 times

> initially while moving around in close quarters.



Hi Ron, I dredged this up from my first night report on the 400GTO with my

130EDT f/8 on it.



-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

Whoa! Waaaay outta

balance BIG time and the Dec and RA locks won't hold it. Gotta be REAL

careful and learn where the setup balance points are. I needed both 6 and 9

pound counterweights. Apparently Roland does not believe the locks should be

like vises.g> They are there to provide 'enough friction' when the scope is

balanced. sigh> Later this was to be a real pain as the 4mm Takahashi EP

and the 31mm Terminagler are like the odd couple of EPs when it comes to

mass. 8^)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=





So mine is just like yours. Which pretty much means this is how AP wants

them to be when they leave the factory. I have the feeling Roland feels our

setups ought be well balanced and that being able to tighten down the locks

to the point they are truly locked is bad or will present other problems.

Probably because he has traced quite a few 'problems' people were having

with AP mounts to poor balance.(??) My problem came when switching from a

Terminagler to a something like a Tak ortho. It's something on the order of

a pound difference. And that far out from the pivot point... well the

results were ugly.g> I'll be using that 'equalizer' slug I bought from

Uncle Al as my '1.25 adapter' from now on!! But I agree it's awful easy to

move the scope after the axis' are 'locked'. Is that the same as the

600/900/1200??



Ummm... Roland can you sorta confirm or deny my 'theory'?



Clear skies,

Jeff







---------------

Are you out of this world?

click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963771087/

---------------



----------------------------

#1010 Jul 16, 2000

Hi Jeff,



I thought the 400GTO mount was not recommended for the 130mm f/8...am

I missing something? I just want to learn as much as I can while I'm

waiting for mine...due this coming week or so.



Best regards,

Bill



----------------------------

#1018 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/15/00 4:26:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



<

* Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

controller and start over both times. >>



This is a symptom of a power supply that is too small. You are running out of

current, and the servo drive will go dead.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1019 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/15/00 4:26:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



<

* Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

controller and start over both times. >>



This is a symptom of a power supply that is too small. You are running out of

current, and the servo drive will go dead. The hand controller has nothing to

do with this problem.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1020 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/15/00 5:23:17 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< The

basic problem was that the mount would stall during slewing unless I went to

a speed so slow that it was driving me crazy waiting. g> >>



This is a symptom of too small a power source. Once the motors stall for any

reason, the servo has to be restarted. The new motors in the 600 and 400 are

geared down and have about twice as much torque as the ones we first

installed. The mount can pull a lot of load without stalling, assuming that

the power supply can put it out.



Roland Christen



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1021 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time,

cdh59@... writes:



<

I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9 1/4", but

I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the mount? >>



I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a 400 GTO.

It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it weighs about 30

lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine battery for

all my mounts.



Roland







----------------------------

#1023 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/16/00 1:13:02 PM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



<

So mine is just like yours. Which pretty much means this is how AP wants

them to be when they leave the factory. I have the feeling Roland feels our

setups ought be well balanced and that being able to tighten down the locks

to the point they are truly locked is bad or will present other problems.

Probably because he has traced quite a few 'problems' people were having

with AP mounts to poor balance. >>



Perhaps we need to increase the torque capability of the clutches. On the old

setup, people used to tighten them so hard that they dimpled the gear wheel.

This left permanent impressions on the surface. We went to Delrin plugs to

avoid that fate. One of our customers made a plastic tool with a cut in the

end which fits over the knob. With this tool, he can tighten the clutches

much more than by hand. It is OK to do that. The Delrin plugs will not score

the gear wheel. Perhaps we have to look at this further to find a permanent

solution.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1026 Jul 17, 2000

I am using the Radio Shack 3-amp, 12V Transformer; nothing else is plugged

into it. Is it possible for only one axis to go dead for this reason? The RA

axis remained fine.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 7:12 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/15/00 4:26:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



<

* Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

controller and start over both times. >>



This is a symptom of a power supply that is too small. You are running out

of

current, and the servo drive will go dead.



Roland Christen



---------------

Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/963843112/

---------------



----------------------------

#1028 Jul 17, 2000

Ron,



I am using the Kendrick 120v to 12v supply. It is rated at 5 amp continuous

and 7 amp peak. No problems to report.



--

Mark



on 7/17/00 10:39 AM, Ron Wodaski at ronw@... wrote:

> I am using the Radio Shack 3-amp, 12V Transformer; nothing else is plugged

> into it. Is it possible for only one axis to go dead for this reason? The RA

> axis remained fine.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 7:12 AM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> In a message dated 7/15/00 4:26:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

> writes:

>

> <

> * Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

> pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

> controller and start over both times. >>

>

> This is a symptom of a power supply that is too small. You are running out

> of

> current, and the servo drive will go dead.

>

> Roland Christen

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/963843112/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963848323/

---------------

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1029 Jul 17, 2000

And I have had no further problems with the mount; I was just curious if one

axis could go out and leave the other one intact, if the source of the

trouble was the power supply.



The Radio-Shack unit has been a real champ; it is the power supply I've used

when others have failed me. g>



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Mark Jenkins [mailto:markj@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:59 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Ron,



I am using the Kendrick 120v to 12v supply. It is rated at 5 amp continuous

and 7 amp peak. No problems to report.



--

Mark



on 7/17/00 10:39 AM, Ron Wodaski at ronw@... wrote:

> I am using the Radio Shack 3-amp, 12V Transformer; nothing else is plugged

> into it. Is it possible for only one axis to go dead for this reason? The

RA > axis remained fine.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 7:12 AM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> In a message dated 7/15/00 4:26:54 PM Central Daylight Time,

ronw@... > writes:

>

> <

> * Twice during polar alignment, the Dec axis stopped responding to the key

> pad, and would not slew back to Polaris. I had to de-power the hand

> controller and start over both times. >>

>

> This is a symptom of a power supply that is too small. You are running out

> of

> current, and the servo drive will go dead.

>

> Roland Christen

>

---------------

> Life's too short to send boring email. Let SuperSig come to the rescue.

> click.egroups.com/1/6137/7/_/3615/_/963843112/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963848323/

---------------

>

>

>







---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963849543/

---------------







----------------------------

#1030 Jul 17, 2000

----- Original Message -----

From: chris1011@...>

> end which fits over the knob. With this tool, he can tighten the clutches

> much more than by hand. It is OK to do that. The Delrin plugs will not

score

> the gear wheel. Perhaps we have to look at this further to find a

permanent

> solution.

>



Holy cow Roland you were a busy writer overnight! Cloudy there in IL?? g>



Thanks for all the info!



I guess the above means, within 'reason' one can hunker down on the locks?

I'll see. A crude wooden tool made with a dremel would most likely be

equivalent to the extra leverage device that chap made. I am not of course

talking about a crowbar here. 'Within reason.'



My only complaint was that it is too easy to bump the scope and lose

calibration. Something that maybe us klutz's ought try and avoid to begin

with.g>



Do look at the latest ones going out the door with like a 130 F/8 on it.

It's 'fairly' easy to bump even when 'locked'. At least for those of us

coming from other non-ap mounts of whose manufacturer shall remain nameless.

g> (Just kidding Greg!!)



BTW: Ron W., I ran my 400GTO mount off an 15v 1000ma wall transformer. I

also have a RS 12v 1000ma that I will try next time and see if there is a

difference. I bought the 15 unit off the net to run the G11.



Clear skies,

Jeff



----------------------------

#1031 Jul 17, 2000

I know that little RS 1000ma transformer; got one, but don't use it to power

the mount. The unit I have is much larger, about 4-5 pounds, and it has a

cigarette-lighter plug-in on it, as well as two banana plugs for 12V +

and -.



I bumped the _scope_ (not the mount) last night after polar alignment. On a

hunch, I continued setting up the camera, and when I was done, I did a

Resume from Park, then a GOTO for Deneb; naturally, I was off by quite a

bit. I then used the button to center Deneb, hit 9 for recal, and was fine

the rest of the night.



So if the _mount_ stays aligned, and it is just the scope that is bumped,

it's really easy to get aligned again. g>



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky [mailto:myrocketcatos@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 9:24 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





----- Original Message -----

From: chris1011@...>

> end which fits over the knob. With this tool, he can tighten the clutches

> much more than by hand. It is OK to do that. The Delrin plugs will not

score

> the gear wheel. Perhaps we have to look at this further to find a

permanent

> solution.

>



Holy cow Roland you were a busy writer overnight! Cloudy there in IL?? g>



Thanks for all the info!



I guess the above means, within 'reason' one can hunker down on the locks?

I'll see. A crude wooden tool made with a dremel would most likely be

equivalent to the extra leverage device that chap made. I am not of course

talking about a crowbar here. 'Within reason.'



My only complaint was that it is too easy to bump the scope and lose

calibration. Something that maybe us klutz's ought try and avoid to begin

with.g>



Do look at the latest ones going out the door with like a 130 F/8 on it.

It's 'fairly' easy to bump even when 'locked'. At least for those of us

coming from other non-ap mounts of whose manufacturer shall remain nameless.

g> (Just kidding Greg!!)



BTW: Ron W., I ran my 400GTO mount off an 15v 1000ma wall transformer. I

also have a RS 12v 1000ma that I will try next time and see if there is a

difference. I bought the 15 unit off the net to run the G11.



Clear skies,

Jeff







---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963850841/

---------------



----------------------------

#1034 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 10:40:44 AM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< I am using the Radio Shack 3-amp, 12V Transformer; nothing else is plugged

into it. Is it possible for only one axis to go dead for this reason? The RA

axis remained fine. >>



Transformers do not put out DC. They are strictly AC devices. I suspect you

have an AC-DC converter, which is not exactly a good supply of DC. They do

not have good filtering, and can have spikes that go below 8 volts when full

current (3amps) is being drawn.



There is no way that one axis will go dead, without the servo detecting this

and shutting off. Both axes will then be disabled.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1035 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 11:01:03 AM Central Daylight Time,

markj@... writes:



<

I am using the Kendrick 120v to 12v supply. It is rated at 5 amp continuous

and 7 amp peak. No problems to report. >>



Those are very good supplies. they put out 13.5 volts, so they have overload

capacity.



Roland Christen







----------------------------

#1036 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 11:23:32 AM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



<

BTW: Ron W., I ran my 400GTO mount off an 15v 1000ma wall transformer. I

also have a RS 12v 1000ma that I will try next time and see if there is a

difference. I bought the 15 unit off the net to run the G11. >>



Wall transformers are notorious for putting out undervoltage spikes since

they have very minimal filtering. No wonder you people are having problems.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1038 Jul 17, 2000

> I am using the Kendrick 120v to 12v supply. It is rated at 5 amp continuous

>> and 7 amp peak. No problems to report.

>

> Those are very good supplies. they put out 13.5 volts, so they have overload

> capacity.



BTW, the brand of 120V to 12V power supply that Kendrick re-packages

can be found both for much less money and in larger capacity models at

www.bills2way.com/equip/pwrsuply.html (And elsewhere of course.)



- Dan



----------------------------

#1039 Jul 17, 2000

>

>> BTW: Ron W., I ran my 400GTO mount off an 15v 1000ma wall transformer. I

>> also have a RS 12v 1000ma that I will try next time and see if there is a

>> difference. I bought the 15 unit off the net to run the G11. >>

>

> Wall transformers are notorious for putting out undervoltage spikes since

> they have very minimal filtering. No wonder you people are having problems.



Right. Even Radio Shack has a good 10 AMP model (at an inflated price).

However, even at inflated prices, these high quality power supplies are

well worth having! See my prior message on this subject for one place

(of many) to get them less expensively.



- Dan



----------------------------

#1040 Jul 17, 2000

on 7/17/00 11:26 AM, Dan Cook at danco@... wrote:

> BTW, the brand of 120V to 12V power supply that Kendrick re-packages

> can be found both for much less money and in larger capacity models at

> www.bills2way.com/equip/pwrsuply.html (And elsewhere of course.)



Oh, sure! no you tell me! ;-)



--

Mark



----------------------------

#1042 Jul 17, 2000

----- Original Message -----

From: chris1011@...>

> Wall transformers are notorious for putting out undervoltage spikes since

> they have very minimal filtering. No wonder you people are having

problems.

> Roland Christen



Short of hauling a deep cycle marine battery around, is there an

alternative? I am not imaging. And I am not really having a problem either

BTW. The mount worked fine off the 15v adapter. A marine battery seems like

overkill for goto visual use. But perhaps not. At my most frequented

observing site I have AC available. Hence I figured I'd 'avoid' the power

problems. I guessed wrong?



I do not have the mount manual with me, but if it's in there, I'll read it.

I am pretty sure I read the mount manual cover to cover. Again, short of a

marine battery, any suggestions?



Clear skies,

Jeff



----------------------------

#1043 Jul 17, 2000

Hi Jeff,



I always use a Marine battery for my mount... even at home. I trickle

charge it between sesssions. I don't find the Marine batteries too much

trouble to lug around.



-Ray Gralak

----- Original Message -----

From: "Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky" myrocketcatos@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 10:36 AM

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





>

> ----- Original Message -----

> From: chris1011@...>

> > Wall transformers are notorious for putting out undervoltage spikes since

> > they have very minimal filtering. No wonder you people are having

> problems.

> > Roland Christen

>

> Short of hauling a deep cycle marine battery around, is there an

> alternative? I am not imaging. And I am not really having a problem either

> BTW. The mount worked fine off the 15v adapter. A marine battery seems like

> overkill for goto visual use. But perhaps not. At my most frequented

> observing site I have AC available. Hence I figured I'd 'avoid' the power

> problems. I guessed wrong?

>

> I do not have the mount manual with me, but if it's in there, I'll read it.

> I am pretty sure I read the mount manual cover to cover. Again, short of a

> marine battery, any suggestions?

>

> Clear skies,

> Jeff

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963855181/

---------------

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1045 Jul 17, 2000

Ray Gralak wrote:

> Hi Jeff,

>

> I always use a Marine battery for my mount... even at home. I trickle

> charge it between sesssions. I don't find the Marine batteries too much

> trouble to lug around.



Marine batteries are great. My only problem is that when I put the dew

zapper on the battery, I get a voltage drop and sometimes the AP GOTO

keypad freezes. I think I've located a DC-DC converter, but not sure

if it's going to do the trick. The supplier (Mouser) could not tell me

very much about it, and they seem somewhat a specialty item. I tried

a DC-Inverter-12V PS combination over the weekend, and this works great,

but is only 50% efficient.



Bob Kuberek







----------------------------

#1047 Jul 17, 2000

Hi Bob,



I use a Kendricks dew zapper on the same battery (180 AH Sears

Diehard Deep Cycle Marine - you can get these at Orchard Supply

too). I've never had a problem.



-Ray Gralak

----- Original Message -----

From: "rck" rkuberek@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 10:59 AM

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





> Ray Gralak wrote:

>

> > Hi Jeff,

> >

> > I always use a Marine battery for my mount... even at home. I trickle

> > charge it between sesssions. I don't find the Marine batteries too much

> > trouble to lug around.

>

> Marine batteries are great. My only problem is that when I put the dew

> zapper on the battery, I get a voltage drop and sometimes the AP GOTO

> keypad freezes. I think I've located a DC-DC converter, but not sure

> if it's going to do the trick. The supplier (Mouser) could not tell me

> very much about it, and they seem somewhat a specialty item. I tried

> a DC-Inverter-12V PS combination over the weekend, and this works great,

> but is only 50% efficient.

>

> Bob Kuberek



----------------------------

#1049 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 12:36:09 PM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



<

I do not have the mount manual with me, but if it's in there, I'll read it.

I am pretty sure I read the mount manual cover to cover. Again, short of a

marine battery, any suggestions? >>



If you're not doing imaging and not plugging in other accessories that draw

intermittent loads (dew removers), and you are not having reset problems,

then keep using what you are using.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1050 Jul 17, 2000

What then would cause one axis to go dead? I was doing a polar alignment

using Altair and Polaris. I had a Tak FSQ-106 on the mount, with an ST-8E

and CFW-8; balance was close but not perfect.



After 3-4 iterations, in both cases I used the hand controller to center

Altair in the finder at 12X rate. I then hit Menu, and the mount attempted

to goto Polaris. The RA motion went it's full course; the Dec appeared not

to move at all (can't be 100% certain, but observing the angle of repose,

Dec was about 90 degrees off, and since Altair is +8 degrees, this is as

close as I can judge it).



The second time, the events were identical. After it happened a second time,

I used the keypad to test the state of the mount. Movement in RA was normal

at 1200X. The mount did not move in Dec. I powered down, and then up again,

and as with the first occurrence, everything was nominal.



Last night, the mount performed perfectly, although I did not do a polar

alignment because I was resuming from park, having left the mount and scope

set up all day and ready to go.



This morning, when I was getting ready to take the scope off the mount, I

did a Park, using #2. The mount stopped prior to full park -- RA was at Park

position, Dec was about 30 degrees short of Park position. I pressed menu as

if true park had been reached. I set the hand controller from 12x to 1200x

(there's that 12X again!), and the mount moved in both RA and Dec. I then

did Park #2 again, and the mount went to the proper Park #2 position. So

even though it stopped prior to reaching Park position, and I pressed Menu,

the mount did know where it was, since it went to the correct Park #2

position on the second try.



Any ideas what might be happening? The load is very well balanced at this

point, with just a very slight extra to the east -- textbook balancing, in

fact. g> Clutches are tight, but the mount can be moved manually without

much effort.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 10:01 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/17/00 10:40:44 AM Central Daylight Time,

ronw@...

writes:



< I am using the Radio Shack 3-amp, 12V Transformer; nothing else is

plugged

into it. Is it possible for only one axis to go dead for this reason? The

RA

axis remained fine. >>



Transformers do not put out DC. They are strictly AC devices. I suspect you

have an AC-DC converter, which is not exactly a good supply of DC. They do

not have good filtering, and can have spikes that go below 8 volts when full

current (3amps) is being drawn.



There is no way that one axis will go dead, without the servo detecting this

and shutting off. Both axes will then be disabled.



Roland Christen



---------------

Do you like Space and Science?

Win $25,000

click.egroups.com/1/6689/7/_/3615/_/963853247/

---------------



----------------------------

#1051 Jul 17, 2000

How about offering a fully qualified and tested power supply for the mounts;

most of us aren't experts in this stuff -- somebody tells us it outputs 12V

DC, we think it's OK. g> At the very least, how about a list of power

supplies that will work when converting from 110?



SBIG charges an arm and a leg for their power supplies, but they are

specially modified units that give the cameras just what they need.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 10:07 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/17/00 11:23:32 AM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



<

BTW: Ron W., I ran my 400GTO mount off an 15v 1000ma wall transformer. I

also have a RS 12v 1000ma that I will try next time and see if there is a

difference. I bought the 15 unit off the net to run the G11. >>



Wall transformers are notorious for putting out undervoltage spikes since

they have very minimal filtering. No wonder you people are having problems.



Roland Christen



---------------

Do you like Space and Science?

Win $25,000

click.egroups.com/1/6689/7/_/3615/_/963853613/

---------------







----------------------------

#1054 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 1:22:09 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



<

Any ideas what might be happening? The load is very well balanced at this

point, with just a very slight extra to the east >>



Check your power supply. try a 12 volt battery. I cannot tell you what else

that it could be. In a normal working servo, it is impossible for the motor

to not move, and the servo drive not to sense that and not shut down.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1055 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 1:24:51 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< How about offering a fully qualified and tested power supply for the

mounts;

most of us aren't experts in this stuff - >>



We do. Its a supply sold by Kendrick: Pyramid Regulated power Supply, Model

PS-9KX, it puts out 5 amps at 13.8 volts, 7 amps intermittent. Works like a

charm.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1057 Jul 17, 2000

Mechanically, that may be true, but what about the hand controller logic?

Something is making it happen! My power supply is 3 amp, 13.8V DC (from 110

house current). I have a 135 amp-hour deep cycle battery which I will try,

just in case, and I will post the results here.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 1:29 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/17/00 1:22:09 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



<

Any ideas what might be happening? The load is very well balanced at this

point, with just a very slight extra to the east >>



Check your power supply. try a 12 volt battery. I cannot tell you what else

that it could be. In a normal working servo, it is impossible for the motor

to not move, and the servo drive not to sense that and not shut down.



Roland Christen



---------------

Do you like Space and Science?

Win $25,000

click.egroups.com/1/6689/7/_/3615/_/963865723/

---------------



----------------------------

#1059 Jul 17, 2000

--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, chris1011@a... wrote:> In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time, > cdh59@b... writes:> > < > I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9 1/4", but> I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the mount?> >>> > I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a 400 GTO. > It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it weighs about 30 > lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine battery for > all my mounts. > > Roland Hi Roland, This is a subject that I will soon have to address with the upcoming 1200 GTO.If memory serves me correctly, I thought I had seen at Astrofest '99 that you were using The KendrickPortable batteries for your mounts. They look attractive, have nice features, and all.Do you personally think that the 33aH unit theymake would be adequate for the 1200GTO, and the addition of a Dew heater for the Objectivelens.. Or should I consider something much larger?Mark (Hope this post looks better than someof my previous ones!)



----------------------------

#1061 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 4:39:09 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< Mechanically, that may be true, but what about the hand controller logic? >>



The hand controller does not control the motors. All the hand controller does

is to send an RA and DEC coordinate to the servobox. There is no other thing

happening. The servobox takes the coordinate information and translates it

into a motor motion. If you pressed the wrong button, sending the mount to

some other place, it would go there. If you are sending an RA/DEC signal to

the servobox, and one of the motors goes to the right place, but the other

motor does not move, the servobox will shut down within 2 seconds, and the

LED light will turn yellow, indicating a motor problem. You can do this

yourself by unplugging the DEC motor cord, press the N button at 64x for 1 or

2 seconds and then noting the color of the light. The mount will

automatically reset when you plug the cord back in and press any of the 4

buttons. The light will go red, and normal motion will resume. Try it.



If you have an unstable supply, I cannot guarantee anything. I have never

tested a mount under those conditions.



Again, the Hand Controller does not control the motions of the motors. It is

a data base that sends RA and DEC info, and can update drive rates, backlash,

etc. Pressing the NSEW keys sends a software command to the servo box, which

in turn sends current to the motors to allow them to move. If the motors

don't move, there is something wrong with the power circuit. The software is

configured so that a no motion on the motors is detected instantly because no

signals are coming back from the motor encoder. The software then turns off

the power to both motors and waits for a reset command. Reset is accomplished

by pressing any of the 4 buttons, or entering a new goto command. The servo

is configured in such a way that one motor cannot slew if the other motor is

dead for any electrical or mechanical reason. The only reason that the DEC

motor would stop ordinarily is that it has reached its commanded position.

You can confirm that by looking at the commanded DEC value vs the actual DEC

value. The commanded value is shown by pressing the previous/next button. The

actual sky position is shown in the RA/DEC menu, button #7.

I can think of severalways that a mount may go to the wrong place. Entering

the wrong Cal star is one that has happened to me in the past. Entering the

wrong longitude, or time, date, daylight savings etc, can have interesting

effects, mostly when trying to park. Since I cannot see what you are doing, I

cannot tell what may be going wrong. You will have to play detective and let

me know more about the symptoms.



Roland Christen

I







----------------------------

#1063 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 5:03:40 PM Central Daylight Time,

markdambrosio@... writes:



< They look attractive, have nice features, and all.Do you personally think

that the 33aH unit theymake would be adequate for the 1200GTO, and the

addition of a Dew heater for the Objectivelens.. Or should I consider

something much larger?Mark (Hope this post looks better than someof my

previous ones!) >>



I have one, and it works quite well with the 10" / 1200 mount. I also have an

85 amp hour marine battery which never seems to run dry. I can run one of my

900 mounts on it for 3 weeks, it seems.



Roland



----------------------------

#1064 Jul 17, 2000

Thanks; that info will help in tracking it down if it recurs.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 3:47 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/17/00 4:39:09 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< Mechanically, that may be true, but what about the hand controller logic? >>



The hand controller does not control the motors. All the hand controller

does

is to send an RA and DEC coordinate to the servobox. There is no other thing

happening. The servobox takes the coordinate information and translates it

into a motor motion. If you pressed the wrong button, sending the mount to

some other place, it would go there. If you are sending an RA/DEC signal to

the servobox, and one of the motors goes to the right place, but the other

motor does not move, the servobox will shut down within 2 seconds, and the

LED light will turn yellow, indicating a motor problem. You can do this

yourself by unplugging the DEC motor cord, press the N button at 64x for 1

or

2 seconds and then noting the color of the light. The mount will

automatically reset when you plug the cord back in and press any of the 4

buttons. The light will go red, and normal motion will resume. Try it.



If you have an unstable supply, I cannot guarantee anything. I have never

tested a mount under those conditions.



Again, the Hand Controller does not control the motions of the motors. It is

a data base that sends RA and DEC info, and can update drive rates,

backlash,

etc. Pressing the NSEW keys sends a software command to the servo box, which

in turn sends current to the motors to allow them to move. If the motors

don't move, there is something wrong with the power circuit. The software is

configured so that a no motion on the motors is detected instantly because

no

signals are coming back from the motor encoder. The software then turns off

the power to both motors and waits for a reset command. Reset is

accomplished

by pressing any of the 4 buttons, or entering a new goto command. The servo

is configured in such a way that one motor cannot slew if the other motor is

dead for any electrical or mechanical reason. The only reason that the DEC

motor would stop ordinarily is that it has reached its commanded position.

You can confirm that by looking at the commanded DEC value vs the actual DEC

value. The commanded value is shown by pressing the previous/next button.

The

actual sky position is shown in the RA/DEC menu, button #7.

I can think of severalways that a mount may go to the wrong place. Entering

the wrong Cal star is one that has happened to me in the past. Entering the

wrong longitude, or time, date, daylight savings etc, can have interesting

effects, mostly when trying to park. Since I cannot see what you are doing,

I

cannot tell what may be going wrong. You will have to play detective and let

me know more about the symptoms.



Roland Christen

I



---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963874012/

---------------



----------------------------

#1065 Jul 17, 2000

Very interesting. So the hand controller is just a separate computer. Like a

laptop and a LX200. All they can do is communicated with a command language.

But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it stand

to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at all

and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks 'AP/LX200'.



I too thought all the 'smarts' must be in the hand controller and the mount

just had 'motor electronics' in it. But that can't be right can it... no.

The RS232 ports are in the MOUNT not the controller... of course.



----- Original Message -----

From: chris1011@...>

snip>

> Again, the Hand Controller does not control the motions of the motors. It

is

> a data base that sends RA and DEC info, and can update drive rates,

backlash,

> etc. Pressing the NSEW keys sends a software command to the servo box,

which

> in turn sends current to the motors to allow them to move. If the motors

> don't move, there is something wrong with the power circuit. The software

is

> configured so that a no motion on the motors is detected instantly because

no

> signals are coming back

snip>







----------------------------

#1068 Jul 17, 2000

Roland-

Thanks for the tip.

> I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a 400 GTO.

> It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it weighs about 30

> lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine battery for



--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



----------------------------

#1069 Jul 17, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



< But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

stand

to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at all

and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks 'AP/LX200'. >>



Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to be

really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

Digital Sky sends down to the second.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1070 Jul 17, 2000

Jeff-



I use a DeVibliss Air compressor from Lowe's. It has a wimpy

compressor, a light, a handle, and its own wall-wart recharger. Just

don't hit the light switch by accident when viewing with friends. Very

convenient size and easy to tote.



But - and this is a very big but - I think it will fall short when it

gets to be dew season.

> Short of hauling a deep cycle marine battery around, is there an

> alternative? I am not imaging. And I am not really having a problem either



--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



----------------------------

#1072 Jul 17, 2000

Jeff



Why not buy a regulated power supply to hook between the wallwart and

the scope or buy a more expensive 120/12v converter that has a voltage

regulator built-in. It is an extra expense, but it's probably the

easiest way to get steady power from a wall plug.



-David

On 17 Jul 2000 23:05:36 -0000, Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky wrote:



>Short of hauling a deep cycle marine battery around, is there an

>alternative? I am not imaging. And I am not really having a problem either

>BTW. The mount worked fine off the 15v adapter. A marine battery seems like

>overkill for goto visual use. But perhaps not. At my most frequented

>observing site I have AC available. Hence I figured I'd 'avoid' the power

>problems. I guessed wrong?

>

>I do not have the mount manual with me, but if it's in there, I'll read it.

>I am pretty sure I read the mount manual cover to cover. Again, short of a

>marine battery, any suggestions?



----------------------------

#1074 Jul 17, 2000

That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky with

the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the time to

install DSV. g>



Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with the

old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.



Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds you

talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if not

600/900/1200?



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

myrocketcatos@... writes:



< But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

stand

to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at

all

and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks 'AP/LX200'. >>



Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to be

really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

Digital Sky sends down to the second.



Roland Christen



---------------

Win $25,000 Today!

click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

---------------



----------------------------

#1075 Jul 17, 2000

David S. writes: > Jeff

> the scope or buy a more expensive 120/12v converter that has a voltage

> regulator built-in. It is an extra expense, but it's probably the

> easiest way to get steady power from a wall plug.

>

> -David



As I wrote Roland privately, I am indeed 'relenting' and ordering a nice

Pyramid PS from a Ham radio outlet. And I am getting a hold of a nice

'reasonable for visual use' 12vdc battery pack for the times, like on

Palomar, where 120vac is not available.



I am not going to be obstinate. g> If Roland says "Use this, it works",

then I'll do that and be done with it. I am just very sensitive to the

amount of stuff I haul cause everytime it increases it gives me an excuse to

say, "Think I'll stay home tonight instead schlep all the stuff around and

drive 3-4 hours round trip." Know what I mean?



Right this moment I have my 400GTO all plugged together and running for the

past hour on a Prosonic PS1270 7amp/hour 'brick size' sealed battery that

the guy who sold me my Losmandy G11 had. It can run the G11 all night. I am

curious how long the 400GTO lasts... Of course it is not slewing. It's just

running the RA axis and keeping the controller running. Sort of like a non

goto night's run or a night of planetary observing.



Clear skies,

Jeff







----------------------------

#1079 Jul 18, 2000

In a message dated 7/17/00 10:18:02 PM Central Daylight Time, ronw@...

writes:



< What are the new slewing speeds, if not

600/900/1200? >>



The speeds have all been reduced about 25%. The torque has increased by more

than 50% due to the use of a higher torque motor. The only way to get higher

slew speeds would have been to require the use of 18 volts, but since this is

to be a portable mount, we opted not to require the extra converters or

batteries. The net result is that it takes 9 seconds longer to go from

horizon to straight up.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1107 Jul 18, 2000

Hi Ron,



I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two commands:



TheSky..AP1200 GTO

:GR#

02:14.9#

:GD#

+53*00#



When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

:Sr 02:12.9#

1

:Sd +54*05#

1

:MS#

0

:GR#

02:12.9#

:GD#

+54*05#



So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.



Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

by entering ":U#".



Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

For example I captured this:



TheSky..AP1200GTO

:Sr 03:32:37#

1

:Sd +72*14:09#

1

:MS#

0

:GR#

03:32:37#

:GD#

+72*14:09#



So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the terminal

mode to enable it with ":U#".



Take care,



-Ray Gralak







> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky with

> the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the time to

> install DSV. g>

>

> Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with the

> old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

>

> Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds you

> talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if not

> 600/900/1200?

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> myrocketcatos@... writes:

>

> < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

> stand

> to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at

> all

> and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks 'AP/LX200'.

> >>

>

> Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

> just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

> command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to be

> really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

> degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

> Digital Sky sends down to the second.

>

> Roland Christen

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

---------------

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1108 Jul 18, 2000

That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply issue

this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with The

Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a difference.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Hi Ron,



I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

commands:



TheSky..AP1200 GTO

:GR#

02:14.9#

:GD#

+53*00#



When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

:Sr 02:12.9#

1

:Sd +54*05#

1

:MS#

0

:GR#

02:12.9#

:GD#

+54*05#



So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.



Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

by entering ":U#".



Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

For example I captured this:



TheSky..AP1200GTO

:Sr 03:32:37#

1

:Sd +72*14:09#

1

:MS#

0

:GR#

03:32:37#

:GD#

+72*14:09#



So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

terminal

mode to enable it with ":U#".



Take care,



-Ray Gralak







> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky

with > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the time

to > install DSV. g>

>

> Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with the

> old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

>

> Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds you

> talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if not

> 600/900/1200?

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> myrocketcatos@... writes:

>

> < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

> stand

> to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at

> all

> and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

'AP/LX200'. > >>

>

> Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

> just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

> command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to

be > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

> degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

> Digital Sky sends down to the second.

>

> Roland Christen

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

---------------

>

>

>



---------------

Are you out of this world?

click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

---------------







----------------------------

#1109 Jul 18, 2000

Hi Ron,



It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply issue

> this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with The

> Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a difference.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Hi Ron,

>

> I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

> it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> commands:

>

> .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> .:GR#

> ....02:14.9#

> .:GD#

> ....+53*00#

>

> When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> .:Sr 02:12.9#

> ....1

> .:Sd +54*05#

> ....1

> .:MS#

> ....0

> .:GR#

> ....02:12.9#

> .:GD#

> ....+54*05#

>

> So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

>

> Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

> by entering ":U#".

>

> Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

> were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> For example I captured this:

>

> .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> .:Sr 03:32:37#

> ....1

> .:Sd +72*14:09#

> ....1

> .:MS#

> ....0

> .:GR#

> ....03:32:37#

> .:GD#

> ....+72*14:09#

>

> So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> terminal

> mode to enable it with ":U#".

>

> Take care,

>

> -Ray Gralak

>

>

>

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky

> with

> > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the time

> to

> > install DSV. g>

> >

> > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with the

> > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> >

> > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds you

> > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if not

> > 600/900/1200?

> >

> > Ron Wodaski

> > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> >

> >

> >

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> >

> > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

> > stand

> > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at

> > all

> > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> 'AP/LX200'.

> > >>

> >

> > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

> > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

> > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to

> be

> > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

> > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

> > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> >

> > Roland Christen

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Today!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Today!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Are you out of this world?

> click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1110 Jul 18, 2000

Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

(correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

and with a capital "U".



Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

a CCD camera to the perfect spot.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Hi Ron,

>

> It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply issue

> > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with The

> > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a difference.

> >

> > Ron Wodaski

> > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> >

> >

> >

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

> > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > commands:

> >

> > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > .:GR#

> > ....02:14.9#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+53*00#

> >

> > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > ....1

> > .:Sd +54*05#

> > ....1

> > .:MS#

> > ....0

> > .:GR#

> > ....02:12.9#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+54*05#

> >

> > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> >

> > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

> > by entering ":U#".

> >

> > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

> > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > For example I captured this:

> >

> > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > ....1

> > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > ....1

> > .:MS#

> > ....0

> > .:GR#

> > ....03:32:37#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+72*14:09#

> >

> > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > terminal

> > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> >

> > Take care,

> >

> > -Ray Gralak

> >

> >

> >

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky

> > with

> > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the time

> > to

> > > install DSV. g>

> > >

> > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with the

> > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > >

> > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds you

> > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if not

> > > 600/900/1200?

> > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > >

> > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets, it

> > > stand

> > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller at

> > > all

> > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > >>

> > >

> > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going with

> > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the LX

> > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits to

> > be

> > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of a

> > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc minutes.

> > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > >

> > > Roland Christen

> > >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > Are you out of this world?

> > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Now!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1111 Jul 18, 2000

For bringing this whole topic about how the controller and moutn

communicate, I expect each Ron and Ray to give up one position in the

following AP notification lists:



105 Traveler

900 GTO

155 EDFS

10" Mak Cass.



Okay?

;D



Clear skies,

Jeff



----------------------------

#1112 Jul 18, 2000

I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera control,

and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X sidereal

rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly simpler to

do this directly in The Sky.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

(correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

and with a capital "U".



Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

a CCD camera to the perfect spot.



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Hi Ron,

>

> It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply

issue > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with

The > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a difference.

> >

> > Ron Wodaski

> > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> >

> >

> >

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

> > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > commands:

> >

> > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > .:GR#

> > ....02:14.9#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+53*00#

> >

> > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > ....1

> > .:Sd +54*05#

> > ....1

> > .:MS#

> > ....0

> > .:GR#

> > ....02:12.9#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+54*05#

> >

> > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> >

> > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

> > by entering ":U#".

> >

> > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further

GOTO's > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > For example I captured this:

> >

> > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > ....1

> > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > ....1

> > .:MS#

> > ....0

> > .:GR#

> > ....03:32:37#

> > .:GD#

> > ....+72*14:09#

> >

> > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > terminal

> > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> >

> > Take care,

> >

> > -Ray Gralak

> >

> >

> >

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky

> > with

> > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the

time > > to

> > > install DSV. g>

> > >

> > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with

the > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > >

> > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds

you > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if

not > > > 600/900/1200?

> > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > >

> > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets,

it > > > stand

> > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller

at > > > all

> > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > >>

> > >

> > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going

with > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the

LX > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits

to > > be

> > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of

a > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

minutes. > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > >

> > > Roland Christen

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > Are you out of this world?

> > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Now!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

> click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

>

>

>



---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977671/

---------------







----------------------------

#1113 Jul 18, 2000

Hi Ron,



Have you used the image link feature of TheSky? Once you orient

TheSky to the camera's angle and center and synch on a known star

it is very easy to put a guidestar on the ST8E's guide chip.



Point and click moves are wonderful IMHO, especially when they can take

advantage of the excellent accuracy of the AP mounts!



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:38 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera control,

> and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X sidereal

> rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly simpler to

> do this directly in The Sky.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

> (correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

> and with a capital "U".

>

> Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

> a CCD camera to the perfect spot.

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> > through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> > format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> > sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply

> issue

> > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with

> The

> > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a difference.

> > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > Hi Ron,

> > >

> > > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200 mount

> > > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > > commands:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:14.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+53*00#

> > >

> > > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +54*05#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:12.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+54*05#

> > >

> > > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> > >

> > > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

> > > by entering ":U#".

> > >

> > > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further

> GOTO's

> > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > > For example I captured this:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....03:32:37#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+72*14:09#

> > >

> > > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > > terminal

> > > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> > >

> > > Take care,

> > >

> > > -Ray Gralak

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The Sky

> > > with

> > > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the

> time

> > > to

> > > > install DSV. g>

> > > >

> > > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble with

> the

> > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > > >

> > > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds

> you

> > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if

> not

> > > > 600/900/1200?

> > > >

> > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > > >

> > > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any secrets,

> it

> > > > stand

> > > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand controller

> at

> > > > all

> > > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > > >>

> > > >

> > > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo going

> with

> > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support the

> LX

> > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing, some

> > > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant digits

> to

> > > be

> > > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth of

> a

> > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

> minutes.

> > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > > >

> > > > Roland Christen

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > Are you out of this world?

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Now!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Today!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977671/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Are you out of this world?

> click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963977830/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1114 Jul 18, 2000

Hi Jeff,



You mean you didn't want to know how they communicate? :-)))



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Jeffrey D. Gortatowsky [mailto:myrocketcatos@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:37 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> For bringing this whole topic about how the controller and moutn

> communicate, I expect each Ron and Ray to give up one position in the

> following AP notification lists:

>

> 105 Traveler

> 900 GTO

> 155 EDFS

> 10" Mak Cass.

>

> Okay?

> ;D

>

> Clear skies,

> Jeff

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Do you like Space and Science?

> Win $25,000

> click.egroups.com/1/6689/7/_/3615/_/963977823/

---------------

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1115 Jul 18, 2000

No, I haven't. I normally have the camera's top pointed just about exactly

north, so it's easy to orient, and I'm able to put guide stars on the chip

(though I have to use that Maxim Move command to make it happen). It will be

much easier to do it in The Sky.



I'm going to be working with a Barlow for the first time on the FSQ tonight,

and I might give the image link a try just to get the exact resulting focal

length worked out more easily.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:55 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Hi Ron,



Have you used the image link feature of TheSky? Once you orient

TheSky to the camera's angle and center and synch on a known star

it is very easy to put a guidestar on the ST8E's guide chip.



Point and click moves are wonderful IMHO, especially when they can take

advantage of the excellent accuracy of the AP mounts!



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:38 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera control,

> and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X sidereal

> rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly simpler to

> do this directly in The Sky.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

> (correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

> and with a capital "U".

>

> Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

> a CCD camera to the perfect spot.

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> > through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> > format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> > sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply

> issue

> > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with

> The

> > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a

difference. > > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > Hi Ron,

> > >

> > > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200

mount > > > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > > commands:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:14.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+53*00#

> > >

> > > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +54*05#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:12.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+54*05#

> > >

> > > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> > >

> > > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format

mode > > > by entering ":U#".

> > >

> > > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further

> GOTO's

> > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > > For example I captured this:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....03:32:37#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+72*14:09#

> > >

> > > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > > terminal

> > > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> > >

> > > Take care,

> > >

> > > -Ray Gralak

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The

Sky > > > with

> > > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the

> time

> > > to

> > > > install DSV. g>

> > > >

> > > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble

with > the

> > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > > >

> > > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds

> you

> > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if

> not

> > > > 600/900/1200?

> > > >

> > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > > >

> > > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any

secrets, > it

> > > > stand

> > > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand

controller > at

> > > > all

> > > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > > >>

> > > >

> > > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo

going > with

> > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support

the > LX

> > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing,

some > > > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant

digits > to

> > > be

> > > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth

of > a

> > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

> minutes.

> > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > > >

> > > > Roland Christen

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Are you out of this world?

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Now!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Today!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977671/

---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Are you out of this world?

> click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963977830/

---------------

>

>

>



---------------

Win $25,000 Today!

click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963978879/

---------------







----------------------------

#1116 Jul 19, 2000

Using the higher accuracy mode made a significant difference. I was able to

quickly put a guide star _exactly_ where I wanted it to be, among other

things. I can see where this would be especially neato-keen when using

longer focal length scopes. Still, even with my FSQ, I could put the guide

star pretty much on the pixel I wanted it to be on. I had a whole different

sense navigating around; it's much more precise.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:55 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





Hi Ron,



Have you used the image link feature of TheSky? Once you orient

TheSky to the camera's angle and center and synch on a known star

it is very easy to put a guidestar on the ST8E's guide chip.



Point and click moves are wonderful IMHO, especially when they can take

advantage of the excellent accuracy of the AP mounts!



-Ray

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:38 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera control,

> and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X sidereal

> rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly simpler to

> do this directly in The Sky.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

> (correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

> and with a capital "U".

>

> Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

> a CCD camera to the perfect spot.

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> > through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> > format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> > sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply

> issue

> > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with

> The

> > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a

difference. > > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > Hi Ron,

> > >

> > > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200

mount > > > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > > commands:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:14.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+53*00#

> > >

> > > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +54*05#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....02:12.9#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+54*05#

> > >

> > > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> > >

> > > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format

mode > > > by entering ":U#".

> > >

> > > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further

> GOTO's

> > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > > For example I captured this:

> > >

> > > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > > ....1

> > > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > > ....1

> > > .:MS#

> > > ....0

> > > .:GR#

> > > ....03:32:37#

> > > .:GD#

> > > ....+72*14:09#

> > >

> > > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > > terminal

> > > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> > >

> > > Take care,

> > >

> > > -Ray Gralak

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The

Sky > > > with

> > > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the

> time

> > > to

> > > > install DSV. g>

> > > >

> > > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble

with > the

> > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > > >

> > > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds

> you

> > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if

> not

> > > > 600/900/1200?

> > > >

> > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > > >

> > > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any

secrets, > it

> > > > stand

> > > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand

controller > at

> > > > all

> > > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > > >>

> > > >

> > > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo

going > with

> > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support

the > LX

> > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing,

some > > > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant

digits > to

> > > be

> > > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth

of > a

> > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

> minutes.

> > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > > >

> > > > Roland Christen

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Are you out of this world?

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Now!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

> >

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

---------------

> > Win $25,000 Today!

> > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977671/

---------------

>

>

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>

---------------

> Are you out of this world?

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---------------

>

>

>



---------------

Win $25,000 Today!

click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963978879/

---------------







----------------------------

#1117 Jul 19, 2000

Hi Ron,



I know what you mean about the navigating around. It is really

so much quicker and accurate than using the guider signals to maneuver.

This is perhaps one more thing to go on AP's tips and hints page.



Take care,



-Ray Gralak

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> Sent: Wednesday, July 19, 2000 2:58 AM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Using the higher accuracy mode made a significant difference. I was able to

> quickly put a guide star _exactly_ where I wanted it to be, among other

> things. I can see where this would be especially neato-keen when using

> longer focal length scopes. Still, even with my FSQ, I could put the guide

> star pretty much on the pixel I wanted it to be on. I had a whole different

> sense navigating around; it's much more precise.

>

> Ron Wodaski

> The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

>

>

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:55 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

>

> Hi Ron,

>

> Have you used the image link feature of TheSky? Once you orient

> TheSky to the camera's angle and center and synch on a known star

> it is very easy to put a guidestar on the ST8E's guide chip.

>

> Point and click moves are wonderful IMHO, especially when they can take

> advantage of the excellent accuracy of the AP mounts!

>

> -Ray

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:38 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera control,

> > and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X sidereal

> > rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly simpler to

> > do this directly in The Sky.

> >

> > Ron Wodaski

> > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> >

> >

> >

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

> > (correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

> > and with a capital "U".

> >

> > Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

> > a CCD camera to the perfect spot.

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > Hi Ron,

> > >

> > > It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> > > through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> > > format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> > > sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long format).

> > >

> > > -Ray

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount simply

> > issue

> > > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication with

> > The

> > > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a

> difference.

> > > >

> > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > Hi Ron,

> > > >

> > > > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > > > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200

> mount

> > > > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following two

> > > > commands:

> > > >

> > > > .TheSky..AP1200 GTO

> > > > .:GR#

> > > > ....02:14.9#

> > > > .:GD#

> > > > ....+53*00#

> > > >

> > > > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > > > .:Sr 02:12.9#

> > > > ....1

> > > > .:Sd +54*05#

> > > > ....1

> > > > .:MS#

> > > > ....0

> > > > .:GR#

> > > > ....02:12.9#

> > > > .:GD#

> > > > ....+54*05#

> > > >

> > > > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec.

> > > >

> > > > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format

> mode

> > > > by entering ":U#".

> > > >

> > > > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further

> > GOTO's

> > > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> > > > For example I captured this:

> > > >

> > > > .TheSky..AP1200GTO

> > > > .:Sr 03:32:37#

> > > > ....1

> > > > .:Sd +72*14:09#

> > > > ....1

> > > > .:MS#

> > > > ....0

> > > > .:GR#

> > > > ....03:32:37#

> > > > .:GD#

> > > > ....+72*14:09#

> > > >

> > > > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use the

> > > > terminal

> > > > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> > > >

> > > > Take care,

> > > >

> > > > -Ray Gralak

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of The

> Sky

> > > > with

> > > > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take the

> > time

> > > > to

> > > > > install DSV. g>

> > > > >

> > > > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble

> with

> > the

> > > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > > > >

> > > > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing speeds

> > you

> > > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing speeds, if

> > not

> > > > > 600/900/1200?

> > > > >

> > > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > > > >

> > > > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any

> secrets,

> > it

> > > > > stand

> > > > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand

> controller

> > at

> > > > > all

> > > > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > > > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > > > >>

> > > > >

> > > > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo

> going

> > with

> > > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that support

> the

> > LX

> > > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing,

> some

> > > > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant

> digits

> > to

> > > > be

> > > > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and tenth

> of

> > a

> > > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

> > minutes.

> > > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > > > >

> > > > > Roland Christen

> > > > >

> > > >

---------------

> > > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> > > >

---------------

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

---------------

> > > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> > > >

---------------

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Are you out of this world?

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > Win $25,000 Now!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

> > >

---------------

> > > >

> > > >

> > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

---------------

> > >

> > >

> > >

> >

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> > Win $25,000 Now!

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---------------

> >

> >

> >

> >

---------------

> > Are you out of this world?

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---------------

> >

> >

> >

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Today!

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---------------

>

>

>

>

---------------

> Are you out of this world?

> click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/964000660/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1120 Jul 19, 2000

In a message dated 7/18/00 10:13:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ray@...

writes:



<

So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in Dec. >>



The accuracy in RA is 6 seconds of time, with 15 arc seconds per second of

time, which comes out 90 arc seconds, 1.5 arc minutes.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1121 Jul 19, 2000

The accuracy in RA is 6 seconds of time, with 15 arc seconds per second of

> time, which comes out 90 arc seconds, 1.5 arc minutes.

>

If you want to get technical it is actually:



1.5*cos(declination) arc-minutes.



That's the trig function, cosine for those not math literate.



-Ray Gralak



----------------------------

#1124 Jul 19, 2000

In a message dated 7/18/00 10:13:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ray@...

writes:



<

Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

by entering ":U#".



Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

For example I captured this: >>





Thanks for finding a way to increase the pointing accuracy of the Sky

software. This is interesting that you can manually activate the Sky's long

format. I'm not sure that I understand how to do it. I am not that savvy in

using this program. Perhaps you can enlighten me.



To clarify what is happening, our servo drive computer will accept any

accuracy you send to it, regardless whether you activate the U#. If you do

not activate the U# command, it will send back to the program the short form

for the RA and DEC co-ordinates. If you do activate the U#, the servo sends

back the long form, to the arc second in DEC. In the upgraded servo control

chips, we plan to change the resolution level in the long form so that it

will accept co-ordinates to the 1/10 arc second in both axes. In our system,

sending the U# fixes the long format. It matters not that you send it once or

a dozen times. In the Meade system, the U# toggles between long and short, so

it is ambiguous. This is why the Sky software does not send it automatically,

because it could have been toggled to the other format in the Meade hand

controller, and then it would be wrong when the Sky sends it again.



The reason that we do not automatically send out the long form is so that the

mount is compatible with the various programs out there which accept only the

short form.



It would have been no sweat for The Sky to incorporate the U# automatically

under an AP format. That is really the only thing that we asked them to do,

but they have refused to add an AP section.



We are now looking at incorporating some other features in the system to

allow parking and recovery of the position automatically whenever the power

is removed and later re-applied. Even though our hand controller is somewhat

limited in its ability to process programs, by storing all critical

information during a power loss in the servo memory, we will be able to

restore the information when the power comes up, and the user will be able to

continue operation in an almost seamless way, assuming he has not moved the

mount or scope in the meantime. Charles is working feverishly on this right

now. The command to restore the system after power loss is new, it's not in

the Meade command, but the beauty of the Meade command system is that you can

add to it almost infinitely, depending on what you need to do. There is no

limitation in that respect.



I am fortunate that we have so many really knowledgeable people sending me

(sometimes seems like bombardment) good suggestions. Some I can implement

easily, others cause problems. I have to remember that not all users are

mount or computer savvy, and a system with complex commands or complex

motions can sometimes screw up a beginner and make him think that something

is wrong with his drive system. I'm thinking of the cord wrap software that

Celestron has to prevent cord wrap. It was very confusing for me the one time

I tried to impliment it. i'm not sure it was well thought out. It caused all

kinds of weird motions that I did not expect. This sort of thing I want to

avoid.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1125 Jul 19, 2000

In a message dated 7/18/00 10:13:54 PM Central Daylight Time, ray@...

> writes:

>

> <

> Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long format mode

> by entering ":U#".

>

> Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all further GOTO's

> were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like DSV).

> For example I captured this: >>

>

>

> Thanks for finding a way to increase the pointing accuracy of the Sky

> software. This is interesting that you can manually activate the Sky's long

> format. I'm not sure that I understand how to do it. I am not that savvy in

> using this program. Perhaps you can enlighten me.



Hi Roland,



I don't have TheSky available to me at the moment but from memory (someone

correct me if I am wrong) go to the Telescope Menu then down to the Options

sub-menu then in there you'll see the "Terminal" menu. Select that and it pops

up the terminal interface dialog. You can then enter ":U#" there.



BTW, thank you for the detailed explanation below. It is very much appreciated!!



Take care,



-Ray Gralak

>

> To clarify what is happening, our servo drive computer will accept any

> accuracy you send to it, regardless whether you activate the U#. If you do

> not activate the U# command, it will send back to the program the short form

> for the RA and DEC co-ordinates. If you do activate the U#, the servo sends

> back the long form, to the arc second in DEC. In the upgraded servo control

> chips, we plan to change the resolution level in the long form so that it

> will accept co-ordinates to the 1/10 arc second in both axes. In our system,

> sending the U# fixes the long format. It matters not that you send it once or

> a dozen times. In the Meade system, the U# toggles between long and short, so

> it is ambiguous. This is why the Sky software does not send it automatically,

> because it could have been toggled to the other format in the Meade hand

> controller, and then it would be wrong when the Sky sends it again.

>

> The reason that we do not automatically send out the long form is so that the

> mount is compatible with the various programs out there which accept only the

> short form.

>

> It would have been no sweat for The Sky to incorporate the U# automatically

> under an AP format. That is really the only thing that we asked them to do,

> but they have refused to add an AP section.

>

> We are now looking at incorporating some other features in the system to

> allow parking and recovery of the position automatically whenever the power

> is removed and later re-applied. Even though our hand controller is somewhat

> limited in its ability to process programs, by storing all critical

> information during a power loss in the servo memory, we will be able to

> restore the information when the power comes up, and the user will be able to

> continue operation in an almost seamless way, assuming he has not moved the

> mount or scope in the meantime. Charles is working feverishly on this right

> now. The command to restore the system after power loss is new, it's not in

> the Meade command, but the beauty of the Meade command system is that you can

> add to it almost infinitely, depending on what you need to do. There is no

> limitation in that respect.

>

> I am fortunate that we have so many really knowledgeable people sending me

> (sometimes seems like bombardment) good suggestions. Some I can implement

> easily, others cause problems. I have to remember that not all users are

> mount or computer savvy, and a system with complex commands or complex

> motions can sometimes screw up a beginner and make him think that something

> is wrong with his drive system. I'm thinking of the cord wrap software that

> Celestron has to prevent cord wrap. It was very confusing for me the one time

> I tried to impliment it. i'm not sure it was well thought out. It caused all

> kinds of weird motions that I did not expect. This sort of thing I want to

> avoid.

>

> Roland Christen

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/964026802/

---------------

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1126 Jul 19, 2000

In a message dated 7/19/00 12:30:29 PM Central Daylight Time, ray@...

writes:



< go to the Telescope Menu then down to the Options

sub-menu then in there you'll see the "Terminal" menu. Select that and it

pops

up the terminal interface dialog. You can then enter ":U#" there. >>



Thanks, I'm going to try that right now.



Roland



----------------------------

#1129 Jul 19, 2000

up the terminal interface dialog. You can then enter ":U#" there. >>

>

> Thanks, I'm going to try that right now.

>

> Roland



You're welcome!



Also, you can enter any other commands there as well. Say you forgot to

put the mount at 0.5x guide rate, you can type ":RG1#". Or you can get

the mount's RA and Dec with ":GR#" and ":GD#", etc. etc.



-Ray



----------------------------

#1130 Jul 20, 2000

Ray,

Thank you very much helping us all gain higher pointing accuracy using

TheSky with the GTO mount. This is a terrific tip! It works perfectly! Now

TheSky users can communicate with our GTO mounts in the long format. This

was always possible with the keypad and DigitalSky Voice. For those that

missed the thread here is the procedure for each session:



Establish the link with the telescope using the LX200 setting.

Select Telescope again from the menu bar, then select options and terminal.

Type ":U#" (without the quotes) onto the command line.

Click OK

Now your GTO control box and TheSky will communicate with long format data,

i.e. R.A.=HH:MM:SS, Dec=signed degrees*minutes:seconds





Chris Marriott has now added an Astro-Physics driver to his SkyMap Pro 6

software (you may have to download the driver from his web site

www.skymap.com ). I understand it utilizes the long format for high pointing

accuracy. A big thanks to Chris who worked with Charles to make this happen.



Again, kudos to Ray!



Marjorie Christen

Astro-Physics



-----Original Message-----

From:.Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

Sent:.Wednesday, July 19, 2000 12:59 PM

To:.ap-gto@egroups.com;

Subject:.Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> up the terminal interface dialog. You can then enter ":U#" there. >>

>

> Thanks, I'm going to try that right now.

>

> Roland



You're welcome!



Also, you can enter any other commands there as well. Say you forgot to

put the mount at 0.5x guide rate, you can type ":RG1#". Or you can get

the mount's RA and Dec with ":GR#" and ":GD#", etc. etc.



-Ray





---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/964029498/

---------------



----------------------------

#1131 Jul 20, 2000

Thanks Marj!



-Ray Gralak

----- Original Message -----

From: "Marj" marj@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Thursday, July 20, 2000 12:22 PM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto]Using TheSky and other software(formerly AP 400 GTO new owner's report)





> Ray,

> Thank you very much helping us all gain higher pointing accuracy using

> TheSky with the GTO mount. This is a terrific tip! It works perfectly! Now

> TheSky users can communicate with our GTO mounts in the long format. This

> was always possible with the keypad and DigitalSky Voice. For those that

> missed the thread here is the procedure for each session:

>

> Establish the link with the telescope using the LX200 setting.

> Select Telescope again from the menu bar, then select options and terminal.

> Type ":U#" (without the quotes) onto the command line.

> Click OK

> Now your GTO control box and TheSky will communicate with long format data,

> i.e. R.A.=HH:MM:SS, Dec=signed degrees*minutes:seconds

>

>

> Chris Marriott has now added an Astro-Physics driver to his SkyMap Pro 6

> software (you may have to download the driver from his web site

> www.skymap.com ). I understand it utilizes the long format for high pointing

> accuracy. A big thanks to Chris who worked with Charles to make this happen.

>

> Again, kudos to Ray!

>

> Marjorie Christen

> Astro-Physics

>

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> Sent: Wednesday, July 19, 2000 12:59 PM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com;

> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

>

> > up the terminal interface dialog. You can then enter ":U#" there. >>

> >

> > Thanks, I'm going to try that right now.

> >

> > Roland

>

> You're welcome!

>

> Also, you can enter any other commands there as well. Say you forgot to

> put the mount at 0.5x guide rate, you can type ":RG1#". Or you can get

> the mount's RA and Dec with ":GR#" and ":GD#", etc. etc.

>

> -Ray

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/964029498/

---------------

>

>

>

---------------

> Win $25,000 Now!

> click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/964120822/

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>

>

>







----------------------------

#1132 Jul 20, 2000

--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, chris1011@a... wrote: > In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time,

> cdh59@b... writes:

>

> <

> I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9

1/4", but > I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the

mount? > >>

>

> I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a

400 GTO. > It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it

weighs about 30 > lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine

battery for > all my mounts.

>

> Roland



Roland,



The 9.25" is ~21 lbs. How do you think the Meade 10" SCT (~30 lbs)

or the Celestron 11" SCT (~27.5 lbs) would work on the 400GTO? I

know they have a bigger diameter than your 7" Mak-Newt, but they are

also probably shorter, and in the case of the C-11, ~2.5 lbs

lighter. I'm curious since I recently took delivery of a new 400GTO,

and my TV-101 is riding on it now. But I have been planning on

getting another scope with aperture, and one of these SCT's fits the

bill (not to mention my budget right now).



By the way, thanks for an incredible job on the 400GTO !!



Gregg Carter



----------------------------

#1133 Jul 20, 2000

In a message dated 7/20/00 9:53:33 PM Central Daylight Time,

gcarter@... writes:



< ow do you think the Meade 10" SCT (~30 lbs)

or the Celestron 11" SCT (~27.5 lbs) would work on the 400GTO? I

know they have a bigger diameter than your 7" Mak-Newt, but they are

also probably shorter, and in the case of the C-11, ~2.5 lbs >>



You're pushing things with the 400 mount. These scopes need and deserve

bigger mountings.



Roland



----------------------------

#1134 Jul 20, 2000

on 7/20/00 11:20 PM, chris1011@... at chris1011@... wrote:

> In a message dated 7/20/00 9:53:33 PM Central Daylight Time,

> gcarter@... writes:

>

> < ow do you think the Meade 10" SCT (~30 lbs)

> or the Celestron 11" SCT (~27.5 lbs) would work on the 400GTO? I

> know they have a bigger diameter than your 7" Mak-Newt, but they are

> also probably shorter, and in the case of the C-11, ~2.5 lbs >>

>

> You're pushing things with the 400 mount. These scopes need and deserve

> bigger mountings.



on 7/17/00 9:24 AM, chris1011@... at chris1011@... wrote:

> I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a 400 GTO.

> It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it weighs about 30

> lb. Both scopes slew with ease.



Roland,



Why would the 400 GTO handle the 7" Mak-Newt at about 30lbs but not the 10"

SCT that weighs about the same?



Is the 10" that much longer than the 7"?



Just curious. I have not intention of "de-forking" my 10" SCT plus the SDF

looks so nice attached to the 400 GTO! :-)





Mark



----------------------------

#1137 Jul 21, 2000

In a message dated 7/21/00 12:16:14 AM Central Daylight Time,

markj@... writes:



< Why would the 400 GTO handle the 7" Mak-Newt at about 30lbs but not the 10"

SCT that weighs about the same?



Is the 10" that much longer than the 7"?



Just curious. I have not intention of "de-forking" my 10" SCT plus the SDF

looks so nice attached to the 400 GTO! :-) >>



Good question. The 7" Mak is an F4.5, and the tube is 8" diameter, so the

weight is closer to the mount than a 10" or 11" tube assembly would be. This

means that the total weight and position of the counterweights is less for

the smaller tube. Also, being a Newt, it sits on a very short, stubby and

sturdy pier, only about 30" high. The big SCTs would sit 50" high, so they

would be less stable on the longer pier. The load on a mount has to take into

consideration the torque that the tube assembly imparts. Tubes that are

either long, or fat increase the torque seen by the gear. The gear on the 400

mount is pretty small for such humongous tubes. While the mount can take the

weight, it really can't take the torque generated by that much weight that

far from the axis.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1140 Jul 21, 2000

What I've found is that in order to "overload" a mount, you have to do a

really good polar alignment, and then you have to adjust the camera control

software's parameters so that guiding activity is minimized -- guiding only

happens when it truly must. At shorter focal lengths, this strategy works

extremely well; as you focal length gets longer, the frequency of guide

corrections tends to go up because of the smaller FOV.



For example, I can guide successfully with a 5" f/8 refractor at 1000mm

focal length on an AP 400, despite the long tube, if I make the adjustments

describes. It took me a couple of hours the first time to really work out

the optimal settings, which includes changing some of the values set during

Maxim's calibration routine.



On the other hand, although the mount will slew my C9.25" scope

effortlessly, at 2000mm it presents much more of a guiding challenge -- and

the moving mirror adds its own nightmarish effects, and I haven't been able

to get the mount to guide with that scope at f/10. A5 f/6.3, or with a

locked-down mirror, the results might be better. Even for use with the AO-7,

the load must be sufficiently balanced to stay within the AO-7's adjustment

range to be successful. The lighter the mount, the harder this is to do.



And any wind at all can make a mockery out of anyone's tweaking in these

situations. g>



There are quite a few variables involved in guiding, and as far as I can

tell only one absolute: if the mount is absolutely overqualified to take a

particular set up, then it will guide OK without much effort. g> Otherwise,

even with what are surely "reasonable" loads, you have at least a handful of

variables that need to be tweaked for really good guiding at any focal

length over 800mm.



If you want to push the capabilities of most mounts, you would be hard

pressed to actually damage the mount if you balance carefully and slew at

reasonable speeds. To get good guiding takes much more effort, but it often

can be done; you just have to identify and then control the variables that

stand in your way. It's a lot like fishing for big game fish with light

tackle, and a number of folks who are into this aspect of the hobby often

refer to it that way. Imaging with light tackle is fun for some of us. The

best situation is to have a mount that is really, really accurate; it limits

the variables to things that can be solved outside of a machine shop. g>



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Friday, July 21, 2000 8:03 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: AP 400 GTO new owner's report





In a message dated 7/21/00 12:16:14 AM Central Daylight Time,

markj@... writes:



< Why would the 400 GTO handle the 7" Mak-Newt at about 30lbs but not the

10"

SCT that weighs about the same?



Is the 10" that much longer than the 7"?



Just curious. I have not intention of "de-forking" my 10" SCT plus the SDF

looks so nice attached to the 400 GTO! :-) >>



Good question. The 7" Mak is an F4.5, and the tube is 8" diameter, so the

weight is closer to the mount than a 10" or 11" tube assembly would be. This

means that the total weight and position of the counterweights is less for

the smaller tube. Also, being a Newt, it sits on a very short, stubby and

sturdy pier, only about 30" high. The big SCTs would sit 50" high, so they

would be less stable on the longer pier. The load on a mount has to take

into

consideration the torque that the tube assembly imparts. Tubes that are

either long, or fat increase the torque seen by the gear. The gear on the

400

mount is pretty small for such humongous tubes. While the mount can take the

weight, it really can't take the torque generated by that much weight that

far from the axis.



Roland Christen



---------------

Win $25,000 Now!

click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/964191807/

---------------







----------------------------

#1179 Jul 23, 2000

Hello. I just received a 400 GTO yesterday, which will replace my

400 QMD. Sorry if this question has been asked before. What is the

purpose of the two small holes bored into the side of each axis of

the mount(about 1/4 inch diameter, right where the encoders would

screw in)? The old QMD has no comparable holes. Thanks. Joe Jones



----------------------------

#1182 Jul 24, 2000

In a message dated 7/23/00 4:05:43 PM Central Daylight Time,

JAYSEEJAY@... writes:



< What is the

purpose of the two small holes bored into the side of each axis of

the mount(about 1/4 inch diameter, right where the encoders would

screw in)? The old QMD has no comparable holes. Thanks. Joe Jones >>



It allows access to the set screws that tighten down the shaft retaining ring.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1189 Jul 24, 2000

I'm here at last!!! Perhaps it was the recent purchase of the 400GOTO in

addition to my year old AP1200 GOTO that did it :-)



My first question is about the 400 GOTO polar axis. Using the screw I

can adjust it so the mount increases in altitude, yet when I undo it the

polar axis does not move. Does this mean I need to loosen the polar axis

a little, or should it be like this?



Adrian

Adrian Catterall, CCD astronomer

email: Catterall@...

Visit my Web page at: www.observatory.demon.co.uk

Guilden Morden

Hertfordshire

U.K.



----------------------------

#1195 Jul 24, 2000

In a message dated 7/24/00 4:15:00 PM Central Daylight Time,

Catterall@... writes:



< Using the screw I

can adjust it so the mount increases in altitude, yet when I undo it the

polar axis does not move. Does this mean I need to loosen the polar axis

a little, or should it be like this? >>



Hello Adrian. Nice to hear from you. You're up there in England at a fairly

high latitude. This presents a problem for the altitude axis. You probably

have too much weight towards the rear of the mount. Loosening the axis a bit

more will help, and sliding the counterweights down to the end of the shaft

may help even more. Let me know if thet works for you.



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1198 Jul 25, 2000

Joe,

These are access holes for set screws that must be tightened during

assembly.

Marjorie Christen

Astro-Physics



-----Original Message-----

From:.JAYSEEJAY@... [mailto:JAYSEEJAY@...]

Sent:.Sunday, July 23, 2000 4:05 PM

To:.ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject:.[ap-gto] Holes in 400 GTO?



Hello. I just received a 400 GTO yesterday, which will replace my

400 QMD. Sorry if this question has been asked before. What is the

purpose of the two small holes bored into the side of each axis of

the mount(about 1/4 inch diameter, right where the encoders would

screw in)? The old QMD has no comparable holes. Thanks. Joe Jones





---------------

Are you out of this world?

click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/964386306/

---------------



----------------------------

#1201 Jul 25, 2000

Hi Roland.....

>Hello Adrian. Nice to hear from you. You're up there in England at a fairly

>high latitude. This presents a problem for the altitude axis. You probably

>have too much weight towards the rear of the mount. Loosening the axis a bit

>more will help, and sliding the counterweights down to the end of the shaft

>may help even more. Let me know if thet works for you.



I'm not quite in the clouds here in UK yet :-)) What you said is what I

thought, just needed clarification as its new equipment and completely

different from the AP1200.



Adrian

Adrian Catterall, CCD astronomer

email: Catterall@...

Visit my Web page at: www.observatory.demon.co.uk

Guilden Morden

Hertfordshire

U.K.



----------------------------

#1203 Jul 25, 2000

Ray, I understand you are using Maxim/DL for camera control on your ST-8

camera. I am using the camera control of Maxim/DL to control my ST-4. Since

both the ST-4 and the ST-8 use the same chip for guiding, what king of

guiding accuracy are you experiencing. What guide rate are you guiding .25,

.5, or 1.0. What settings are you using in the guide settings dialog box.



I have been using guiding rates of 1.0 and .5, with plus or minus .5 of a

pixel accuracy most of the time, and 1 pixel accuracy at others, this

according to the Maxim reports.



Since AP mounts are well engineered, is it beneficial to have the mount

adjusted every five or ten seconds or do you delay the corrections to the

mount to every one to five minutes.



Thanks...Terry Johnson ----- Original Message -----

From: "Ray Gralak" ray@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Wednesday, July 19, 2000 4:44 AM

Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report





> Hi Ron,

>

> I know what you mean about the navigating around. It is really

> so much quicker and accurate than using the guider signals to maneuver.

> This is perhaps one more thing to go on AP's tips and hints page.

>

> Take care,

>

> -Ray Gralak

>

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > Sent: Wednesday, July 19, 2000 2:58 AM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Using the higher accuracy mode made a significant difference. I was able

to

> > quickly put a guide star _exactly_ where I wanted it to be, among other

> > things. I can see where this would be especially neato-keen when using

> > longer focal length scopes. Still, even with my FSQ, I could put the

guide

> > star pretty much on the pixel I wanted it to be on. I had a whole

different

> > sense navigating around; it's much more precise.

> >

> > Ron Wodaski

> > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> >

> >

> >

> > -----Original Message-----

> > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:55 PM

> > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> >

> >

> > Hi Ron,

> >

> > Have you used the image link feature of TheSky? Once you orient

> > TheSky to the camera's angle and center and synch on a known star

> > it is very easy to put a guidestar on the ST8E's guide chip.

> >

> > Point and click moves are wonderful IMHO, especially when they can take

> > advantage of the excellent accuracy of the AP mounts!

> >

> > -Ray

> >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:38 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > I know all about that "perfect spot." I'm using Maxim for camera

control,

> > > and there is a Move command buried in the Guide dialog; at .5X

sidereal

> > > rate, I can do very fine movements. However, it would be vastly

simpler to

> > > do this directly in The Sky.

> > >

> > > Ron Wodaski

> > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > >

> > >

> > >

> > > -----Original Message-----

> > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:35 PM

> > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > >

> > >

> > > Forgot to add that when you issue the :U# command the mount

> > > (correctly) sends no response so be sure to type it correctly

> > > and with a capital "U".

> > >

> > > Without issuing this command it is very difficult to manuever

> > > a CCD camera to the perfect spot.

> > >

> > > -Ray

> > >

> > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:31 PM

> > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > Hi Ron,

> > > >

> > > > It's not the mount issuing the long format command. It's you

> > > > through TheSky! The mount could be made to start off in long

> > > > format mode but that might make it incompatible with less

> > > > sophisticated programs (i.e., those that don't understand long

format).

> > > >

> > > > -Ray

> > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:24 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > That's good news. The obvious question then is: could the mount

simply

> > > issue

> > > > > this command on its own behalf during it's initial communication

with

> > > The

> > > > > Sky? I will try this technique tonight and see if it makes a

> > difference.

> > > > >

> > > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > From: Ray Gralak [mailto:ray@...]

> > > > > Sent: Tuesday, July 18, 2000 8:12 PM

> > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > Hi Ron,

> > > > >

> > > > > I just used a serial port protocol analyzer my AP mount and TheSky

> > > > > to see what is happening. When TheSky first connects to my AP1200

> > mount

> > > > > it did the following. Actually, it kept looping on the following

two

> > > > > commands:

> > > > >

> > > > > TheSky AP1200 GTO

> > > > > :GR#

> > > > > 02:14.9#

> > > > > :GD#

> > > > > +53*00#

> > > > >

> > > > > When I did a slew it issued the following commands:

> > > > > :Sr 02:12.9#

> > > > > 1

> > > > > :Sd +54*05#

> > > > > 1

> > > > > :MS#

> > > > > 0

> > > > > :GR#

> > > > > 02:12.9#

> > > > > :GD#

> > > > > +54*05#

> > > > >

> > > > > So up to now accuracy is 6 arc-seconds in RA and 1 arc-minute in

Dec.

> > > > >

> > > > > Next from TheSky's terminal menu I manually entered the long

format

> > mode

> > > > > by entering ":U#".

> > > > >

> > > > > Immediately TheSKy recognized the higher resolution and all

further

> > > GOTO's

> > > > > were done with the long format (arc-second accuracy, just like

DSV).

> > > > > For example I captured this:

> > > > >

> > > > > TheSky AP1200GTO

> > > > > :Sr 03:32:37#

> > > > > 1

> > > > > :Sd +72*14:09#

> > > > > 1

> > > > > :MS#

> > > > > 0

> > > > > :GR#

> > > > > 03:32:37#

> > > > > :GD#

> > > > > +72*14:09#

> > > > >

> > > > > So, the moral is if you want arc-second precision with TheSky use

the

> > > > > terminal

> > > > > mode to enable it with ":U#".

> > > > >

> > > > > Take care,

> > > > >

> > > > > -Ray Gralak

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > > From: Ron Wodaski [mailto:ronw@...]

> > > > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 8:17 PM

> > > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > > Subject: RE: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > > That's good to know; I've been disappointed in the accuracy of

The

> > Sky

> > > > > with

> > > > > > the AP mount, and now I know why. Now I have motivation to take

the

> > > time

> > > > > to

> > > > > > install DSV. g>

> > > > > >

> > > > > > Just because I'm perverse, I put the C9.25" that gave me trouble

> > with

> > > the

> > > > > > old 600 on the new PA 400 GTO; it handles it fine. Go figure.

> > > > > >

> > > > > > Do all of the new AP 400's have the revised (slower) slewing

speeds

> > > you

> > > > > > talked about in another message? What are the new slewing

speeds, if

> > > not

> > > > > > 600/900/1200?

> > > > > >

> > > > > > Ron Wodaski

> > > > > > The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > > -----Original Message-----

> > > > > > From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

> > > > > > Sent: Monday, July 17, 2000 6:53 PM

> > > > > > To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> > > > > > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] AP 400 GTO new owner's report

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > > In a message dated 7/17/00 6:48:10 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > > > > > myrocketcatos@... writes:

> > > > > >

> > > > > > < But they are not tightly coupled. It's not giving away any

> > secrets,

> > > it

> > > > > > stand

> > > > > > to follow then that the mount can operate without the hand

> > controller

> > > at

> > > > > > all

> > > > > > and instead use Digital Sky Voice. Or anything else the speaks

> > > > > 'AP/LX200'.

> > > > > > >>

> > > > > >

> > > > > > Yes, you can throw the hand controller away and start hte servo

> > going

> > > with

> > > > > > just Digital Sky Voice, as well as any other programs that

support

> > the

> > > LX

> > > > > > command language. Please note, however, that as of this writing,

> > some

> > > > > > planetarium programs do not send or receive enough significant

> > digits

> > > to

> > > > > be

> > > > > > really accurate. The Sky, for instance sends only degrees and

tenth

> > of

> > > a

> > > > > > degree, so that the resolution of that program is only +- 6 arc

> > > minutes.

> > > > > > Digital Sky sends down to the second.

> > > > > >

> > > > > > Roland Christen

> > > > > >

> > > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963885186/

> > > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963890179/

> > > > >

> > >

---------------

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

> >

---------------

> > > > > Are you out of this world?

> > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6692/7/_/3615/_/963976331/

> > > >

> >

---------------

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > > >

> > > >

> >

---------------

> > > > > Win $25,000 Now!

> > > > > click.egroups.com/1/6691/7/_/3615/_/963977006/

> > > >

> >

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> > > > >

> > > >

> > >

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> > > > Win $25,000 Today!

> > > > click.egroups.com/1/6690/7/_/3615/_/963977415/

> > >

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----------------------------

#1204 Jul 25, 2000

Ray, I understand you are using Maxim/DL for camera control on your ST-8

> camera. I am using the camera control of Maxim/DL to control my ST-4. Since

> both the ST-4 and the ST-8 use the same chip for guiding, what king of

> guiding accuracy are you experiencing. What guide rate are you guiding .25,

> .5, or 1.0. What settings are you using in the guide settings dialog box.



Hi Terry,



I usually guide at .5, update every 5 seconds, and use an aggresiveness of 4.

> I have been using guiding rates of 1.0 and .5, with plus or minus .5 of a

> pixel accuracy most of the time, and 1 pixel accuracy at others, this

> according to the Maxim reports.

>

> Since AP mounts are well engineered, is it beneficial to have the mount

> adjusted every five or ten seconds or do you delay the corrections to the

> mount to every one to five minutes.



While it depends on your focal length and how well you are polar aligned,

I would recommend 5 second updates in most cases



Take care,



-Ray



----------------------------

#1233 Jul 30, 2000

I need to bring this topic up again. I'm very close to making my

purchase for some aperture for my 400 GTO The 9.25" SCT is my

preferred choice. Am I going to be OK for both visual and

photographic applications? If not, then I'll probably go ahead and

get an 8" SCT OTA, but it would be great to get that 9.25", from what

I have heard. Any and all advice and/or recommendations are welcome

and appreciated.



Thanks,



Gregg Carter









--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, chris1011@a... wrote:

> In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time,

> cdh59@b... writes:

>

> <

> I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9

1/4", but

> I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the

mount?

> >>

>

> I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a

400 GTO.

> It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it

weighs about 30

> lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine

battery for

> all my mounts.

>

> Roland



----------------------------

#1236 Jul 31, 2000

--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, "Gregg Carter" gcarter@d...> wrote: > I need to bring this topic up again. I'm very close to making my

> purchase for some aperture for my 400 GTO The 9.25" SCT is my

> preferred choice. Am I going to be OK for both visual and

> photographic applications? If not, then I'll probably go ahead and

> get an 8" SCT OTA...



Gregg,



I'm going to limit my reply to your interest in astrophotography.

Your 400 mount may be able to physically carry the extra load of the

9.25", but don't push it. Ads and bragging rights aside, the

practical performance difference between the 8" and the 9.25" is

insignificant, and you are not likely to see the difference unless

you live under very dark skies.



There are many important factors for photography that are much less

important to observational astronomy. E.g., the more you tax your

mount, the more susceptible it is to vibration and breezes. Either

one will ruin your photograph of ccd image. Focusing is critical and

you'd be wise to buy a motorized focuser (additional weight). This

isn't the forum for this discussion, but you can contact me by pvt. e-

mail for additional information.



I'll leave you with this: if you want to see what you can do with

only 5" of aperture, see the reigning master of the 5" refractor, Ray

Gralak ( www.gralak.com/ ). With a year or two of experience,

you should be able to do that quality work with an 8" SCT. If you go

for the 9.25" you may get so frustrated that you give up

astrophotography, and that would be a shame because it is so much

fun! Anyway, just my $.02



Larry



----------------------------

#1241 Jul 31, 2000

Gregg:



I was in your same boat a few years back: 8 or 9.25. Since I wanted to

get into CCD imaging, I was leaning towards the slightly larger aperture

of the 9.25, plus it neat micrometer. I ran into Jim Riffle at

Astroworks, and he turned me to the 8 simply because the 8 is Fastar

ready, capable of imaging at f1.95. The 9.25 is not and will not be.

Jim explained to me that the 9.25 is, "an albatross", not very popular.

He said I'd be much better off stepping up to the C11 (which isn't

Fastar ready either). I guess it depends on what you plan on doing with

the OTA. For visual, I suppose the extra 1.25 inches may help some. To

be perfectly honest with you, I have not used my C8 visually since I

bought my ST237! Imaging at f1.95, especially with an AP mount, is a

dream...



Also, I'd say in my non-expert opinion that a 9.25 with CCD, etc., will

severely tax the AP400 except perhaps in an observatory situation.

Getting the C8 OTA, a micrometer, and plates, will save you some bucks

for the Fastar kit and camera too!



Chris



www.darklightimagery.net



Gregg Carter wrote: >

> I need to bring this topic up again. I'm very close to making my

> purchase for some aperture for my 400 GTO The 9.25" SCT is my

> preferred choice. Am I going to be OK for both visual and

> photographic applications? If not, then I'll probably go ahead and

> get an 8" SCT OTA, but it would be great to get that 9.25", from what

> I have heard. Any and all advice and/or recommendations are welcome

> and appreciated.

>

> Thanks,

>

> Gregg Carter

>

> --- In ap-gto@egroups.com, chris1011@a... wrote:

> > In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time,

> > cdh59@b... writes:

> >

> > <

> > I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9

> 1/4", but

> > I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the

> mount?

> > >>

> >

> > I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a

> 400 GTO.

> > It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it

> weighs about 30

> > lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine

> battery for

> > all my mounts.

> >

> > Roland

>

>



--

C. G. Anderson

www.darklightimagery.net



"Nothing says 'obey me' like a bloody head on a fence post."



Stewie Griffin







----------------------------

#1248 Aug 3, 2000

I've used my 9.25" on the AP 400, both visually and photographically. The

main issue is that it's a long focal length, and you will need to really

invest some time to make it work, but it _can_ be made to work.



The combination of the weight of the 9.25" and the long focal length can be

addressed by taking the time to really learn your mount's characteristics.

If you will be imaging with an SBIG ST-7/8/9, I strongly recommend that you

get the AO-7 adaptive optics unit; it will help enormously and reduce the

effort needed to get optimal guiding.



Otherwise, you first need to physically tune the mount to near perfection,

in terms of free play, end play, and backlash settings. There will always be

some residual play in the system -- there has to be, otherwise you will be

applying too much stress to the gear train, and could perhaps damage the

motors, the gears, etc.



This remaining backlash can be handled with the hand controller, plus fine

tuning with your camera control software if it includes this feature

(Maxim/DL does). You want to identify the setting that leaves the least

possible amount of free play, so that you have very tight control over the

mount position. Use the Move button in the Settings dialog of the Guide

panel in Maxim/DL to evaluate backlash and its control in both axes.



Balancing your load properly will also be more important at longer focal

lengths and with the heavier load; you want to always be slightly

over-weighted to the east so that the mount is pushing up hill and keeping

the gears engaged on RA. Your guide rate should be no more than .5x at this

focal length. Some folks recommend calibrating at 1x and guiding at .5, but

I have found that this can fail when you are getting close to the limits of

a mount; the mount can fail to respond in a reasonable time resulting in

smeared star images. A good polar alignment is essential, but if Dec guiding

is a problem, consider a consistent slight mis-alignment that will keep all

Dec corrections going in the same direction, too. You can evaluate this by

observing the Dec error numbers; if they consistently stay positive or

negative, you are keeping the gears meshed. You will probably need to adjust

aggressiveness and other settings to keep the guiding corrections all on one

side of the pole.



Next, you will want to experiment with the various settings available to you

in your camera control software; Maxim/DL makes this easy. You will want to

test various levels of aggressiveness; look at the effects of modifying the

rates following a calibration routine; place limits on the duration of

correction pulses, or to alter the minimum time between corrections -- etc.

etc. The key is to study the mount carefully, at different positions, and

see how these various parameters affect the quality of your guiding. You are

aiming to get guiding variations of +/- .5 pixel in order to get first-rate

images; these numbers are for a better-than-average night of seeing. On an

average night, you really can't do much with a focal length of 2350mm

because the stars will be too bloated.



Finally, you will need to stay close and monitor guiding performance, either

by saving to a file and analyzing later, perhaps by loading it into a

spreadsheet, or stay by the scope and watch the numbers. I like to sit at

the scope and observe the numbers; when unusual variations pop up, I can

study the physical mount and look for causes, or test solutions. This was

how I learned that my mount tends to show wider variations in guiding

excursions as the scope points closer to the zenith; I deal with it by

increasing the guide interval, by reducing aggressiveness, by altering the

calibration numbers, or various combinations of tricks. g>



Of course, you can always get the Optec f/5 reducer, or the standard f/6.3

reducers, and simplify your life a bit, but in either case you will still be

at a long enough focal length, and carrying a heavy enough load, that

attention to detail will still be very important.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Gregg Carter [mailto:gcarter@...]

Sent: Sunday, July 30, 2000 8:50 PM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: [ap-gto] Re: AP 400 GTO new owner's report





I need to bring this topic up again. I'm very close to making my

purchase for some aperture for my 400 GTO The 9.25" SCT is my

preferred choice. Am I going to be OK for both visual and

photographic applications? If not, then I'll probably go ahead and

get an 8" SCT OTA, but it would be great to get that 9.25", from what

I have heard. Any and all advice and/or recommendations are welcome

and appreciated.



Thanks,



Gregg Carter









--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, chris1011@a... wrote:

> In a message dated 7/15/00 5:49:41 PM Central Daylight Time,

> cdh59@b... writes:

>

> <

> I use the 400GTO for my C8, and I would be tempted to try a 9

1/4", but

> I'm guessing it would be a little too much. IOW, Why ruin the

mount?

> >>

>

> I don't think you will have any problem. I have my 8" Mak-Cass on a

400 GTO.

> It weighs 16lb. I also have a 7" Mak-Newt on a 400 GTO and it

weighs about 30

> lb. Both scopes slew with ease. I always use a heavy duty marine

battery for

> all my mounts.

>

> Roland







----------------------------

#1249 Aug 3, 2000

I have tested my 9.25" against three different 8" SCTs, and in all cases the

9.25" was substantially sharper. I would be loathe to image with an 8" SCT

if I had a 9.25" available to me. Even on the AP400, I would prefer to sweat

the issues around a heavier scope than image with an 8". g> My 9.25" may be

better than average, and thus my experience, but none of my 8" SCT images

can hold a candle to the 9.25" images, even when the imaging was done on an

AP 400.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Larry Denmark [mailto:kldenmark@...]

Sent: Monday, July 31, 2000 5:07 AM

To: ap-gto@egroups.com

Subject: [ap-gto] Re: AP 400 GTO new owner's report



--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, "Gregg Carter" gcarter@d...> wrote:

> I need to bring this topic up again. I'm very close to making my

> purchase for some aperture for my 400 GTO The 9.25" SCT is my

> preferred choice. Am I going to be OK for both visual and

> photographic applications? If not, then I'll probably go ahead and

> get an 8" SCT OTA...



Gregg,



I'm going to limit my reply to your interest in astrophotography.

Your 400 mount may be able to physically carry the extra load of the

9.25", but don't push it. Ads and bragging rights aside, the

practical performance difference between the 8" and the 9.25" is

insignificant, and you are not likely to see the difference unless

you live under very dark skies.



There are many important factors for photography that are much less

important to observational astronomy. E.g., the more you tax your

mount, the more susceptible it is to vibration and breezes. Either

one will ruin your photograph of ccd image. Focusing is critical and

you'd be wise to buy a motorized focuser (additional weight). This

isn't the forum for this discussion, but you can contact me by pvt. e-

mail for additional information.



I'll leave you with this: if you want to see what you can do with

only 5" of aperture, see the reigning master of the 5" refractor, Ray

Gralak ( www.gralak.com/ ). With a year or two of experience,

you should be able to do that quality work with an 8" SCT. If you go

for the 9.25" you may get so frustrated that you give up

astrophotography, and that would be a shame because it is so much

fun! Anyway, just my $.02



Larry



----------------------------

#1282 Aug 6, 2000

I find that when I tighten the RA axis after/during polar alignment that the

RA will shift. I have now learned the following technique.



When I am centering Polaris, I will alternate the between the left and right

lock down bolts. this will move the RA "back and forth" and I was pretty

successful in getting Polaris centered after getting both bolts tight.



I have not yet performed a drift alignment procedure. How do you deal with

this "problem" during drift alignment?



Do I need to have these bolts very tight to assure that the RA axis will not

"slip" out of alignment?



What about the Dec axis? I have yet to tighten that bolt.



Thanks.



--

Clear Skies!



Mark Jenkins

markj@...

www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/



----------------------------

#1283 Aug 6, 2000

Mark-



You must be talking about the Azimuth axis and the Altitude axis, and

their respective locking bolts, right? If you get the course adjustment

with the AZ. knobs, why not do the final fine increments with the

locking knobs? It's something you just get used to doing. And the

locking knobs don't have to be gorilla tight anyway.



How would these affect drift alignment? If you are accustomed to making

fine adjustments with the Az. with the locking bolts, then it should

work fine. Small adjustments are what you are after anyway.

> I find that when I tighten the RA axis after/during polar alignment that the

> RA will shift. I have now learned the following technique.

>

> When I am centering Polaris, I will alternate the between the left and right

> lock down bolts. this will move the RA "back and forth" and I was pretty

> successful in getting Polaris centered after getting both bolts tight.

>

> I have not yet performed a drift alignment procedure. How do you deal with

> this "problem" during drift alignment?

>

> Do I need to have these bolts very tight to assure that the RA axis will not

> "slip" out of alignment?

>

> What about the Dec axis? I have yet to tighten that bolt.



Best regards,

Chuck Hancock



c d h 5 9 at b e l l s o u t h d o t n e t



----------------------------

#1284 Aug 6, 2000

Mark, I have had the same problem with my 600GTO mount. I have solved the

problem in three ways:



1. -When you have completed making your adjustments in RA, make sure that

both of the RA adjustment knobs are tight against one another. This helps

prevent the mount from moving when you tighten the mount screws (hex bolts)

that hold the mount down.



2. -When you loosen the mount screws, you do not have to loosen them very

much. The less you loosen them the less movement you will have when you

tighten them.



3. -I have found that after I have tightened the mount screws, I can still

make fine adjustments to RA with the adjustment knobs.



Hope this helps...Terry Johnson



----- Original Message -----

From: "Mark Jenkins" markj@...>

To: "AP GTO List" ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 8:02 AM

Subject: [ap-gto] 400 GTO RA "Lock Down" procedure





> I find that when I tighten the RA axis after/during polar alignment that

the

> RA will shift. I have now learned the following technique.

>

> When I am centering Polaris, I will alternate the between the left and

right

> lock down bolts. this will move the RA "back and forth" and I was pretty

> successful in getting Polaris centered after getting both bolts tight.

>

> I have not yet performed a drift alignment procedure. How do you deal with

> this "problem" during drift alignment?

>

> Do I need to have these bolts very tight to assure that the RA axis will

not

> "slip" out of alignment?

>

> What about the Dec axis? I have yet to tighten that bolt.

>

> Thanks.

>

> --

> Clear Skies!

>

> Mark Jenkins

> markj@...

> www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1285 Aug 6, 2000

Chuck,



oops! A little mix-up in my terminology there! Sorry about that.



Yes, I am talking about the Alt/Az adjustments. I kind of figured that the

lock down could act as the fine adjustment. I just wanted to confirm that

others are doing this the same way.



Thanks!



--

Clear Skies!



Mark Jenkins

markj@...

www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/



on 8/6/00 1:39 PM, Chuck Hancock at cdh59@... wrote:

> Mark-

>

> You must be talking about the Azimuth axis and the Altitude axis, and

> their respective locking bolts, right? If you get the course adjustment

> with the AZ. knobs, why not do the final fine increments with the

> locking knobs? It's something you just get used to doing. And the

> locking knobs don't have to be gorilla tight anyway.

>

> How would these affect drift alignment? If you are accustomed to making

> fine adjustments with the Az. with the locking bolts, then it should

> work fine. Small adjustments are what you are after anyway.

>

>> I find that when I tighten the RA axis after/during polar alignment that the

>> RA will shift. I have now learned the following technique.

>>

>> When I am centering Polaris, I will alternate the between the left and right

>> lock down bolts. this will move the RA "back and forth" and I was pretty

>> successful in getting Polaris centered after getting both bolts tight.

>>

>> I have not yet performed a drift alignment procedure. How do you deal with

>> this "problem" during drift alignment?

>>

>> Do I need to have these bolts very tight to assure that the RA axis will not

>> "slip" out of alignment?

>>

>> What about the Dec axis? I have yet to tighten that bolt.

>

> Best regards,

> Chuck Hancock

>



>



----------------------------

#1286 Aug 6, 2000

Sounds like you are really referring to the Altitude and Azimuth

adjustments. The two vertical bolts on the AP 400 tighten down your azimuth

adjustment.



I discovered Mylar washers, which are very tough and low in friction. I

originally installed them on my AP 600 to deal with a similar problem, and

they work just as well on my AP 400. With the Mylar washers in place, I can

tighten the two bolts that lock down the azimuth adjustment, and still move

the mount using the two hand-screws. This has given me much better polar

alignment with fewer iterations.



Please see my web page to see how/where the washers are used on the AP 600;

use on the 400 is similar:



www.wodaski.com/wodaski/ap600clamp.htm



Folks seem to have a hard time finding these Mylar washers, so if you can

find them, I bought a bunch locally and can send some to you; details are on

my web page.



Ron Wodaski

The New Astronomy Book Site - www.newastro.com







-----Original Message-----

From: Mark Jenkins [mailto:markj@...]

Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2000 8:03 AM

To: AP GTO List

Subject: [ap-gto] 400 GTO RA "Lock Down" procedure





I find that when I tighten the RA axis after/during polar alignment that the

RA will shift. I have now learned the following technique.



When I am centering Polaris, I will alternate the between the left and right

lock down bolts. this will move the RA "back and forth" and I was pretty

successful in getting Polaris centered after getting both bolts tight.



I have not yet performed a drift alignment procedure. How do you deal with

this "problem" during drift alignment?



Do I need to have these bolts very tight to assure that the RA axis will not

"slip" out of alignment?



What about the Dec axis? I have yet to tighten that bolt.



Thanks.



--

Clear Skies!



Mark Jenkins

markj@...

www.pcsincnet.com/astronomy/



----------------------------

#1546 Nov 2, 2000

Hi all,



I am on the list for the AP Traveler and realize I'm in for a long wait. I

mainly wanted it for visual observing but now I wish to try my hand at CCD

imaging (planetary & deep sky) as well. Will the Traveler with the 400 GTO

mount be a good setup for this or should I look at getting something with a

larger aperture such as an LX200 for CCD imaging? I'm going to get the

Traveler regardless, the question really is one scope or two.



Also, are there significant differences between the different mounts or is

it mostly just the size scope they can handle?



Thanks in advance,



Jamie Rivett

jamie@...



----------------------------

#1547 Nov 2, 2000

Hi Jamie:

My two cents...

you don't really need aperture (or fast focal ratio, which is more important

in imaging) for CCD. Fast focal ratio is important for film. The big

difference between the two scopes you mention is focal length: the traveler

will give you wide-field, while the LX200 will give you much smaller fields

but larger image size, making it good for small objects. The LX200 is also

in a different range of manufacturer's quality control compared to the

Traveler, so you might find it (the LX200) frustrating to use. I am able to

get short unguided CCD exposures with my LX, but for long film exposures I

have abandoned it and use only my A-P (and sometimes a newt on a G-11 mount.

Bert



Bert Katzung

San Rafael, CA

katzung1@...



----- Original Message -----

From: "Rivett, Jamie" jamie@...>

To: ap-gto@egroups.com>

Sent: Thursday, 02 November, 2000 9:43 AM

Subject: [ap-gto] Traveler + 400 GTO for CCD imaging





> Hi all,

>

> I am on the list for the AP Traveler and realize I'm in for a long wait.

I

> mainly wanted it for visual observing but now I wish to try my hand at

CCD

> imaging (planetary & deep sky) as well. Will the Traveler with the 400

GTO

> mount be a good setup for this or should I look at getting something with

a

> larger aperture such as an LX200 for CCD imaging? I'm going to get the

> Traveler regardless, the question really is one scope or two.

>

> Also, are there significant differences between the different mounts or is

> it mostly just the size scope they can handle?

>

> Thanks in advance,

>

> Jamie Rivett

> jamie@...

>

>

>







----------------------------

#1548 Nov 2, 2000

In a message dated 11/2/00 12:40:55 PM Central Standard Time,

jamie@... writes:



< Will the Traveler with the 400 GTO

mount be a good setup for this or should I look at getting something with a

larger aperture such as an LX200 for CCD imaging? >>



Depends on what you want to do. Traveler = wide field deep sky, ease of use,

almost can't go wrong

LX200 = narrow field, galaxies etc, takes

more skill to get good results



Roland Christen



----------------------------

#1552 Nov 4, 2000

Steve,



What is the URL for Thierry Legault's web site?



Jim

--- In ap-gto@egroups.com, "Steve Leikind" sleikind@v...> wrote:

> Jamie,

>

> Tbe AP400 mount would work very well with the Traveler for CCD

> imaging. I have used it with a heavier Tak FSQ 106 for imaging

> purposes and it works great. The mount can also handle 8" SCT's for

> imaging tasks. If you get much larger than this, however, a larger

> mount is preferable.

>

> The Traveler is great for wide field imaging of spectacular objects

> such as M31, the North American nebula etc. It can also provide

fine

> images of the planets, but cannot give the same detail and

resolution

> that signficantly larger scopes can. A larger SCT will show more

> detail on the planets provided it is in focus and properly

> collimated. That's a big IF. Good focus and collimation aren't easy

> to achieve with SCT's. SCT's require much more attention to detail

> than refractors do. See Thierry Legault's web site and his article

in

> the January 2000 issue of S&T for more on this.

>

> -Steve

>



----------------------------

#1567 Nov 6, 2000

Hi Jamie,



A Traveler plus 400 GTO should work very well for CCD imaging.

I recently acquired a used Traveler and have been having a great time

imaging objects from my backyard. My latest image is that of

the Rosette nebula through an H-Alpha filter with my SBIG ST-8E.

It is just monochrome but I plan to add color the next clear night

here in California.



Full-size: www.gralak.com/Astro/Rosette-HA-AP105.jpg



Half-size: www.gralak.com/Astro/Rosette-HA-AP105-Reduced.jpg



-Ray Gralak

> -----Original Message-----

> From: Rivett, Jamie [mailto:jamie@...]

> Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2000 9:44 AM

> To: ap-gto@egroups.com

> Subject: [ap-gto] Traveler + 400 GTO for CCD imaging

>

>

> Hi all,

>

> I am on the list for the AP Traveler and realize I'm in for a long wait. I

> mainly wanted it for visual observing but now I wish to try my hand at CCD

> imaging (planetary & deep sky) as well. Will the Traveler with the 400 GTO

> mount be a good setup for this or should I look at getting something with a

> larger aperture such as an LX200 for CCD imaging? I'm going to get the

> Traveler regardless, the question really is one scope or two.

>

> Also, are there significant differences between the different mounts or is

> it mostly just the size scope they can handle?

>

> Thanks in advance,

>

> Jamie Rivett

> jamie@...

>

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1570 Nov 6, 2000

In a message dated 11/2/00 12:40:55 PM Central Standard Time,

jamie@... writes:



< Will the Traveler with the 400 GTO

mount be a good setup for this or should I look at getting something with a

larger aperture such as an LX200 for CCD imaging? >>



Jamie, I have been taking CCD images with my Traveler and QMD400 (non-GTO)

mount for a couple years now. With focal reducers, barlows and eyepiece

projection you can get a wide range of focal lengths matching your field of

view to the object you want to image. My web site will give you some examples

of the images you can take with the Traveler. My web site is at:

www.geocities.com/Rszczerb/homepage.html



----------------------------

#1574 Nov 6, 2000

Nice images.



From: Ray Gralak > A Traveler plus 400 GTO should work very well for CCD imaging.

> I recently acquired a used Traveler and have been having a great time

> imaging objects from my backyard. My latest image is that of

> the Rosette nebula through an H-Alpha filter with my SBIG ST-8E.

> It is just monochrome but I plan to add color the next clear night

> here in California.

>

> Full-size: www.gralak.com/Astro/Rosette-HA-AP105.jpg

>

> Half-size: www.gralak.com/Astro/Rosette-HA-AP105-Reduced.jpg



----------------------------

#1827 Feb 5 1:21 PM

Greetings everyone:



I've been a subscriber to the list for a few months and have learned a lot

from all of you. I have both a Traveler and 130 EDF that I use (separately)

on a 400 GTO mount (version 2.5 controller) and could use some advice with

the following:



- Occasionally, after using the mount for a few hours, the entire system

freezes while slewing to a selected object. I have not been able to unfreeze

the system without disconnecting the power and then having to go through the

full calibration routine.



- I've read some recent messages here about the safe zone and still don't

understand how it works. How can the safe zone be defined without using safe

ranges of both RA and Dec and what is the meaning of the single numerical

input of between 0-20 degrees?



Any help would be much appreciated.



David Green

dcverde@...

Santa Barbara, California







----------------------------

#1828 Feb 5 9:43 PM

Hi David,



Rumor has it that an upcoming software release will fix this problem. ;-)



What was the ambient temperature when this "freeze" took place.



How long had you been out observing?



Was the hand controller "idle" for any length of time?



Mark

On 2/5/01 at 9:21 PM, dcverde@... (David C. Green) wrote:



> Greetings everyone:

>

> I've been a subscriber to the list for a few months and have learned a lot

> from all of you. I have both a Traveler and 130 EDF that I use (separately)

> on a 400 GTO mount (version 2.5 controller) and could use some advice with

> the following:

>

> - Occasionally, after using the mount for a few hours, the entire system

> freezes while slewing to a selected object. I have not been able to unfreeze

> the system without disconnecting the power and then having to go through the

> full calibration routine.

>

> - I've read some recent messages here about the safe zone and still don't

> understand how it works. How can the safe zone be defined without using safe

> ranges of both RA and Dec and what is the meaning of the single numerical

> input of between 0-20 degrees?

>

> Any help would be much appreciated.

>

> David Green

> dcverde@...

> Santa Barbara, California

>

>

>

>

>

>



----------------------------

#1829 Feb 6 3:58 AM

David-



The degree range of safe zone refers to the deviation from the vertical

from which the scope will be prevented from pointing. You enter the

range in altitude, and the mount takes care of figuring out the RA/Dec

that needs to be excluded at any particular moment.



If the scope will run into the tripod when it is pointing up at an

altitude of 74 degrees, you will want to set the safe zone to 0-20. Or

get a shorter scope.g>

> - I've read some recent messages here about the safe zone and still don't

> understand how it works. How can the safe zone be defined without using safe

> ranges of both RA and Dec and what is the meaning of the single numerical

> input of between 0-20 degrees?

--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock DMD



McDonough GA USA



----------------------------

#1831 Feb 6 9:07 AM

----- Original Message -----

From: "David C. Green" dcverde@...>

> Greetings everyone:

> - Occasionally, after using the mount for a few hours, the entire system

> freezes while slewing to a selected object. I have not been able to

unfreeze

> the system without disconnecting the power and then having to go through

the

> full calibration routine.



I think I have V2.6, and yes, I've had that happen. I have no explanation

except it happens a lot more on a 70 amp/hr deep cycles than when plugged

into a 3 amp radio shack 12v transformer. I don't use the Goto very much

preferring to starhop, so the fact it's happen to me tells me it might be

more common than we might think. Or I have a crappy deep cycle battery.



Clear skies,

Jeff



----------------------------

#1839 Feb 6 3:38 AM

Mark and Chuck:



Thanks for the quick response.



Mark - The temperature was about 45 deg. F, the mount had been on earlier in

the afternoon and then out of a powered off park for about four hours, and

the hand controller had been in frequent (every few minutes) use prior to

the freeze. BTW, this has happened more than once under similar conditions.



Chuck:

How about one more time? If the safe zone is the area within which the scope

will be prevented from moving, and in you're example it can move 74 degrees

from vertical before hitting the tripod, then should the controller input be

16 (90-74) degrees? I don't believe the controller takes a range, but only a

single numerical input. Or, as you suggested, one can simply get (or cut it

into) a shorter scope . g>



Regards,

David



David Green

dcverde@...

Santa Barbara, CA



----------------------------

#1840 Feb 6 12:16 PM

In a message dated 2/6/01 1:35:44 PM Central Standard Time, dcverde@...

writes:



< Mark - The temperature was about 45 deg. F, the mount had been on earlier

in

the afternoon and then out of a powered off park for about four hours, and

the hand controller had been in frequent (every few minutes) use prior to

the freeze. BTW, this has happened more than once under similar conditions. >>



The keypad is not "freezing". What may be happening is that there is some

kind of overload on the mounting that causes the RA motor to stop tracking.

When the servo controller senses that the RA tracking has ceased, it shuts

off all functions to prevent catastrophic motor burnout. The only way to

reset with the old software is to turn the power off (the new version will

have automatic reset and annunciation of problems on the keypad readout).

There are any number of reasons that the RA motor may be stalling, so if it

continues, you can send the unit in explaining the problem, and we will have

a look at the mount to see what caused it. The keypad has no control over

anything. If the servo shuts down for the above reasons, the keypad will not

go any further in its operation.



Roland Christen







----------------------------

#1842 Feb 6 7:15 PM

David-



What I meant in my example was that the scope could move anywhere from

Horizontal (0 deg.) up to 74 degrees altitude before the back of the

scope runs into the tripod. So you would set the safety Zone at 20, or

20 degrees FROM the Vertical. You could just set Zone at 16 or 17.



Aside: When I answered your previous post I had not actually used the

Safety Zone feature. At first, I did have a problem with my SCT's 2"

diagonal running into the tripod's bulky leg joints - the Celestar 8

Deluxe standard tripod. Likewise the counterweight. So I made a tripod

extension to raise the adapter ring another 2.625" above the top of the

tripod. The tripod extension is a nice laminated wood

(walnut/fir/walnut with a water-based varnish) cylinder that serves as a

mini pier. Extra long allen bolts hold the adapter ring to the tripod

via holes in the extension. It works like a charm for the SCT, but I

guess a portable pier may be the way to go if and when I get one of

those premium refractors - all in good time.

> How about one more time? If the safe zone is the area within which the scope

> will be prevented from moving, and in you're example it can move 74 degrees

> from vertical before hitting the tripod, then should the controller input be

> 16 (90-74) degrees? I don't believe the controller takes a range, but only a

> single numerical input. Or, as you suggested, one can simply get (or cut it

> into) a shorter scope . g>

>

> Regards,

> David

>

> David Green

> dcverde@...

> Santa Barbara, CA



--

Best regards,

Chuck Hancock DMD



McDonough GA USA



----------------------------

#2336 Apr 25, 2001

Hi,



I am on the list for an AP Traveler & 400 GTO mount and plan to use them for

colour CCD imaging. Can anyone tell me if there would be any advantage to

upgrading to a 600 GTO? The mount will be dedicated to the Traveler so it

doesn't need to support anything larger than the Traveler, CCD, etc.



Thanks,



Jamie



----------------------------

#2338 Apr 25, 2001

I've imaged with that combination (Traveler + CCD on AP 400GTO). The 400 is

impressively capable for a small mount. I've imaged with as much as a C9.25"

on it (focal length 2350mm), so the Traveler should be totally comfortable

on the 400 for imaging purposes. Here's an image of M27 taken with the C9.25

and an ST-8E on a 400 GTO:



www.wodaski.com/wodaski/images/new/M27LRGBMira.jpg



You couldn't ask for betting guiding and tracking.



Ron Wodaski

The New CCD Astronomy

www.newastro.com



-----Original Message-----

From: Rivett, Jamie [mailto:jamie@...]

Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2001 9:52 AM

To: 'ap-ug@yahoogroups.com'; 'ap-gto@yahoogroups.com';

'SBIG@yahoogroups.com'

Subject: [ap-gto] AP Traveler + 400 GTO for CCD work





Hi,



I am on the list for an AP Traveler & 400 GTO mount and plan to use them for

colour CCD imaging. Can anyone tell me if there would be any advantage to

upgrading to a 600 GTO? The mount will be dedicated to the Traveler so it

doesn't need to support anything larger than the Traveler, CCD, etc.



Thanks,



Jamie





To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list

see groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto



Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/



----------------------------

#3288 Aug 15, 2001

Good evening,



I am assembling my mount and scope for the first time inside on the

padded carpeted floor. Nervous, I am.



I am using the 8" Dove plate with the sliding bar.



Attaching the mounting rings to the sliding bar.



1. You use the 1/2" 1/4 20 socket head screws?

2. The screw heads protrude below the sliding bar to catch in the

stops on the mounting plate?

3. You use the holes on the end of the sliding bar to mount the

rings on?

4. Does it matter which direction the sliding bar is put into the

plate?



I have the 400 GTO tech paper off the AP web site. Are there any

other sights or places with detailed pics and instructions?



Regards,



Newbie Jim



PS More questions to follow oh experienced ones.



----------------------------

#4040 Nov 27, 2001

Greetings,



Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and uploading

3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is causing me

some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a rough

align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse. Date,

time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set correctly.



When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA slew), the

scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past Bellatrix

about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and direct the

mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing - slews to

Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.



Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my best to rule

out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

thanks for any input!

Ben







----------------------------

#4041 Nov 27, 2001

Your 400 has the old gearbox (19:1 ?) instead of the newer 32:1

gearing. You need to call A-P and exchange your 'KD' chip for a plain

old 'D'. Ask to speak with Wally as he can confirm the cause of the

problem and be sure it's not pilot error before you proceed with the

chip swap.



Paul W.



--- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

>

> Greetings,

>

> Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and

uploading

> 3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is causing me

> some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a rough

> align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse. Date,

> time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set

correctly.

>

> When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA slew), the

> scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past

Bellatrix

> about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and direct

the

> mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing - slews to

> Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.

>

> Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my best to

rule

> out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

> thanks for any input!

> Ben



----------------------------

#4042 Nov 27, 2001

Thanks a million, Paul - I'll check this out right away.

b

--- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote:

> Your 400 has the old gearbox (19:1 ?) instead of the newer 32:1

> gearing. You need to call A-P and exchange your 'KD' chip for a

plain

> old 'D'. Ask to speak with Wally as he can confirm the cause of the

> problem and be sure it's not pilot error before you proceed with

the

> chip swap.

>

> Paul W.

>

>

> --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> >

> > Greetings,

> >

> > Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and

> uploading

> > 3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is causing

me

> > some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a rough

> > align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse. Date,

> > time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set

> correctly.

> >

> > When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA slew), the

> > scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past

> Bellatrix

> > about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and direct

> the

> > mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing - slews to

> > Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.

> >

> > Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my best to

> rule

> > out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

> > thanks for any input!

> > Ben



----------------------------

#4043 Nov 27, 2001

Yup, that was the problem - my serial number indicated that I was to

have the 'KD' chip, but for some reason I guess I have the old

gearing. I threw in the 'D' chip from my 900GTO and things appear to

be peachy.



And then it clouded over. Grr. I read somewhere that clouds were

like neutral-density filters. I wonder if you can ccd through clouds

that are too thick to look through?



Thanks again for the tip Paul, you were right on.

b

--- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

>

> Thanks a million, Paul - I'll check this out right away.

> b

>

> --- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote:

> > Your 400 has the old gearbox (19:1 ?) instead of the newer 32:1

> > gearing. You need to call A-P and exchange your 'KD' chip for a

> plain

> > old 'D'. Ask to speak with Wally as he can confirm the cause of

the

> > problem and be sure it's not pilot error before you proceed with

> the

> > chip swap.

> >

> > Paul W.

> >

> >

> > --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> > >

> > > Greetings,

> > >

> > > Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and

> > uploading

> > > 3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is causing

> me

> > > some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a

rough

> > > align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse.

Date,

> > > time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set

> > correctly.

> > >

> > > When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA slew),

the

> > > scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past

> > Bellatrix

> > > about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and

direct

> > the

> > > mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing - slews

to

> > > Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.

> > >

> > > Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my best

to

> > rule

> > > out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

> > > thanks for any input!

> > > Ben







----------------------------

#4046 Nov 28, 2001

Hi Ben



Yup, been there, done that ;-) I got my 400 in April of 2000, so it

looks like a few of the 400s from that run have the old gearbox. Fine

by me since I think it will slew faster than the 32:1 geared mounts.



The only downside is that the motors must work harder at the siderial

rate, which apparently caused a few to burn out in cases where the

mount was overloaded or seriously unbalanced. I guess that's why A-P

went with the new gearing.



I doubt I'll overload the mount with my little 90 EDL ;-) Maybe when

I get that 5" EDF :-)



Paul

--- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

>

> Yup, that was the problem - my serial number indicated that I was

to

> have the 'KD' chip, but for some reason I guess I have the old

> gearing. I threw in the 'D' chip from my 900GTO and things appear

to

> be peachy.

>

> And then it clouded over. Grr. I read somewhere that clouds were

> like neutral-density filters. I wonder if you can ccd through

clouds

> that are too thick to look through?

>

> Thanks again for the tip Paul, you were right on.

> b

>

> --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> >

> > Thanks a million, Paul - I'll check this out right away.

> > b

> >

> > --- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote:

> > > Your 400 has the old gearbox (19:1 ?) instead of the newer 32:1

> > > gearing. You need to call A-P and exchange your 'KD' chip for a

> > plain

> > > old 'D'. Ask to speak with Wally as he can confirm the cause of

> the

> > > problem and be sure it's not pilot error before you proceed

with

> > the

> > > chip swap.

> > >

> > > Paul W.

> > >

> > >

> > > --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> > > >

> > > > Greetings,

> > > >

> > > > Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and

> > > uploading

> > > > 3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is

causing

> > me

> > > > some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a

> rough

> > > > align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse.

> Date,

> > > > time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set

> > > correctly.

> > > >

> > > > When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA slew),

> the

> > > > scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past

> > > Bellatrix

> > > > about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and

> direct

> > > the

> > > > mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing - slews

> to

> > > > Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.

> > > >

> > > > Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my best

> to

> > > rule

> > > > out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

> > > > thanks for any input!

> > > > Ben



----------------------------

#4048 Nov 28, 2001

--- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote: > Hi Ben

>

> Yup, been there, done that ;-) I got my 400 in April of 2000, so it

> looks like a few of the 400s from that run have the old gearbox.



My mount was also from that run...

> The only downside is that the motors must work harder at the

siderial > rate, which apparently caused a few to burn out in cases where the

> mount was overloaded or seriously unbalanced. I guess that's why A-

P > went with the new gearing.



Gotcha. I think my Traveler and CCD gear won't stress it too much

either, but good to know.

Thanks again!

Ben



----------------------------

#4064 Dec 6, 2001

Paul,

Yes, most of the 400GTOs have the 19.8:1 gearbox which works just

fine with these mounts. There have not been any problems or burnouts

with it. The slew speeds are normal. Mounts that have the 32:1

gearbox (primarily 600EGTOs since mid-Feb 2000)do have somewhat

slower slew speeds in exchange for greater torque. We updated our

website to reflect this. For your info, these are the rates: 460x,

580x and 675x rather than 600x, 900x, 1200x.



Marj



--- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote:

> Hi Ben

>

> Yup, been there, done that ;-) I got my 400 in April of 2000, so it

> looks like a few of the 400s from that run have the old gearbox.

Fine

> by me since I think it will slew faster than the 32:1 geared mounts.

>

> The only downside is that the motors must work harder at the

siderial

> rate, which apparently caused a few to burn out in cases where the

> mount was overloaded or seriously unbalanced. I guess that's why A-

P

> went with the new gearing.

>

> I doubt I'll overload the mount with my little 90 EDL ;-) Maybe

when

> I get that 5" EDF :-)

>

> Paul

>

> --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> >

> > Yup, that was the problem - my serial number indicated that I was

> to

> > have the 'KD' chip, but for some reason I guess I have the old

> > gearing. I threw in the 'D' chip from my 900GTO and things

appear

> to

> > be peachy.

> >

> > And then it clouded over. Grr. I read somewhere that clouds

were

> > like neutral-density filters. I wonder if you can ccd through

> clouds

> > that are too thick to look through?

> >

> > Thanks again for the tip Paul, you were right on.

> > b

> >

> > --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> > >

> > > Thanks a million, Paul - I'll check this out right away.

> > > b

> > >

> > > --- In ap-gto@y..., plw@w... wrote:

> > > > Your 400 has the old gearbox (19:1 ?) instead of the newer

32:1

> > > > gearing. You need to call A-P and exchange your 'KD' chip for

a

> > > plain

> > > > old 'D'. Ask to speak with Wally as he can confirm the cause

of

> > the

> > > > problem and be sure it's not pilot error before you proceed

> with

> > > the

> > > > chip swap.

> > > >

> > > > Paul W.

> > > >

> > > >

> > > > --- In ap-gto@y..., ben@s... wrote:

> > > > >

> > > > > Greetings,

> > > > >

> > > > > Since putting the new chip into my 400 GTO's controller and

> > > > uploading

> > > > > 3.09 into the keypad, my formerly well-behaved mount is

> causing

> > > me

> > > > > some trouble. I have the mount set up in field mode, do a

> > rough

> > > > > align with the polar scope and synch on, say, Betelgeuse.

> > Date,

> > > > > time, location, daylight savings and mount type are all set

> > > > correctly.

> > > > >

> > > > > When asked to slew to Bellatrix (almost entirely an RA

slew),

> > the

> > > > > scope slews from east to west, but keeps cruising west past

> > > > Bellatrix

> > > > > about 3 degrees or so. If I then center on Bellatrix and

> > direct

> > > > the

> > > > > mount to return to Betelgeuse, it does the same thing -

slews

> > to

> > > > > Betelgeuse and keeps on going east a few degrees.

> > > > >

> > > > > Any thoughts as to what could be causing this? I did my

best

> > to

> > > > rule

> > > > > out pilot error, but I must be missing something...

> > > > > thanks for any input!

> > > > > Ben







----------------------------

#4071 Dec 6, 2001

Hey Marj!!



Do tell! How was Hawaii?

Come on! We're like family. We wanna know. :)

Where's that photo album. Tell Roland to use You've Got Pictures. :)







---------------

Do You Yahoo!?

Get your free @... address at mail.yahoo.com



----------------------------

#4072 Dec 6, 2001

In a message dated 12/6/2001 7:54:19 PM Pacific Standard Time,

indanapt@... writes:



> Where's that photo album. Tell Roland to use You've Got Pictures. :)

>

>



We did have a great time, but did not do any serious observing. I had the

90mm Stowaway with me, and we used it to scout out snorkel sites from our

second floor lanai (porch). We could see where the dive boats were anchored

at all the beaches for miles down the coast, and used our maps to locate the

most likely sites. Worked pretty good. We also used it to try to spot whales

in the channel, but never did see any. At night I observed the Orion Nebula

rising over the top of Heleakela - neat sight. One sunset I did get a very

vivid view of the green flash thru the scope. Marj saw it naked eye as a

bright green dot at the very last second as the sun set. Next night I set up

to image it with the digital camera but got only a putrid yellow sliver

because of low level haze.



The only pictures I have are of us hiking in various parts of the island. You

wanna see them?



Roland Christen





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



----------------------------

#4073 Dec 6, 2001

Jeff,

Hawaii, specifically Maui, was wonderful. Absolutely perfect weather

except one day. Although I saw two straggler Leonid meteors the night

after the BIG event, we missed the great shower. We were sitting in

the terminal at O'Hare at 4AM on the 18th and it was cloudy! By the

time we were airborne above the clouds it was barely dawn. I wish we

had made the reservation a few days earlier so we could have viewed

them from the beach or the top of Haleakala. What a sight it would

have been. Still kicking myself.....



It was a fabulous break. Thanks for taking care of each other while

we were gone. Our staff kept things humming here- making, painting

and assembing lots of parts. We've hit ground running upon our

return. It's good to be back. You don't really believe that do you ;-)



Marj



--- In ap-gto@y..., "Jeffrey Gortatowsky" indanapt@y...> wrote:

> Hey Marj!!

>

> Do tell! How was Hawaii?

> Come on! We're like family. We wanna know. :)

> Where's that photo album. Tell Roland to use You've Got Pictures. :)

>

>

>

---------------

> Do You Yahoo!?

> Get your free @... address at mail.yahoo.com



----------------------------

#4078 Dec 7, 2001

Hi Marj, Roland,



It great to take time out from your busy schedule and

spend time together! I always look forward to those

moments when spending time with my wife.



In late July, my wife and I went to Colorado and Utah

for two weeks. We did soooooo much hiking (7 National

Parks!) and driving that when we returned we need a

vacation from our vacation!



Hope to see you at the next WSP,



Tim







--- chris1011@... wrote: > In a message dated 12/6/2001 7:54:19 PM Pacific

> Standard Time,

> indanapt@... writes:

>

>

> > Where's that photo album. Tell Roland to use

> You've Got Pictures. :)

> >

> >

>

> We did have a great time, but did not do any serious

> observing. I had the

> 90mm Stowaway with me, and we used it to scout out

> snorkel sites from our

> second floor lanai (porch). We could see where the

> dive boats were anchored

> at all the beaches for miles down the coast, and

> used our maps to locate the

> most likely sites. Worked pretty good. We also used

> it to try to spot whales

> in the channel, but never did see any. At night I

> observed the Orion Nebula

> rising over the top of Heleakela - neat sight. One

> sunset I did get a very

> vivid view of the green flash thru the scope. Marj

> saw it naked eye as a

> bright green dot at the very last second as the sun

> set. Next night I set up

> to image it with the digital camera but got only a

> putrid yellow sliver

> because of low level haze.

>

> The only pictures I have are of us hiking in various

> parts of the island. You

> wanna see them?

>

> Roland Christen

>

>

> [Non-text portions of this message have been

> removed]

>

>

>

> To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the

> ap-gto list

> see groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto

>

> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to

> docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/

>

>





---------------

Do You Yahoo!?

Send your FREE holiday greetings online!

greetings.yahoo.com







----------------------------

#4080 Dec 7, 2001

Tim,

We also have great memories of hiking in Arches (the long trail that

few people do was our favorite)and watching the sunset over

Canyonlands a number of years ago. We also rafted down the Colorado

through the rapids. Loved that trip also. Experiences like that

rejuvenate the spirit.



Marj

--- In ap-gto@y..., Tim Khan timkhan@y...> wrote:

> Hi Marj, Roland,

>

> It great to take time out from your busy schedule and

> spend time together! I always look forward to those

> moments when spending time with my wife.

>

> In late July, my wife and I went to Colorado and Utah

> for two weeks. We did soooooo much hiking (7 National

> Parks!) and driving that when we returned we need a

> vacation from our vacation!

>

> Hope to see you at the next WSP,

>

> Tim

>

>

>

> --- chris1011@a... wrote:

> > In a message dated 12/6/2001 7:54:19 PM Pacific

> > Standard Time,

> > indanapt@y... writes:

> >

> >

> > > Where's that photo album. Tell Roland to use

> > You've Got Pictures. :)

> > >

> > >

> >

> > We did have a great time, but did not do any serious

> > observing. I had the

> > 90mm Stowaway with me, and we used it to scout out

> > snorkel sites from our

> > second floor lanai (porch). We could see where the

> > dive boats were anchored

> > at all the beaches for miles down the coast, and

> > used our maps to locate the

> > most likely sites. Worked pretty good. We also used

> > it to try to spot whales

> > in the channel, but never did see any. At night I

> > observed the Orion Nebula

> > rising over the top of Heleakela - neat sight. One

> > sunset I did get a very

> > vivid view of the green flash thru the scope. Marj

> > saw it naked eye as a

> > bright green dot at the very last second as the sun

> > set. Next night I set up

> > to image it with the digital camera but got only a

> > putrid yellow sliver

> > because of low level haze.

> >

> > The only pictures I have are of us hiking in various

> > parts of the island. You

> > wanna see them?

> >

> > Roland Christen

> >

> >

> > [Non-text portions of this message have been

> > removed]

> >

> >

> >

> > To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the

> > ap-gto list

> > see groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto

> >

> > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to

> > docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/

> >

> >

>

>

---------------

> Do You Yahoo!?

> Send your FREE holiday greetings online!

> greetings.yahoo.com



----------------------------

#4534 Mar 8, 2002

I am writing a Visual Basic program that will, among other things, measure

your backlash in time and/or in arcseconds. In one approach to this

measurement, I wrote code that alternately takes a short exposure and then

moves the mount for one second. It does this over and over until the mount

starts to move, at which point backlash has been "used up."



I noticed an interesting behavioral difference between RA and Dec that may

be relevant to the ongoing discussions about obtaining the best possible

guiding performance. In RA, the transition to movement is always smooth,

presumably because all we are doing in making guide changes is speeding up

or slowing down the tracking motion. In Dec, the transition to movement is

often abrupt and involves the a sudden release. In other words, the mount

can be seen to not move for several attempts, and then it moves all at once,

with the combined vector of the movements that failed to happen due to

(presumably) friction. So if the mount is being moved for some arbitrary

time t, and backlash is 5t, then movement occurs as follows over the course

of 11 iterations:



(top row is number of move in sequence; bottom row is amount moved)



1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 ...

---------------

0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 3, 1, 1, 1, ... etc.



IF this behavior is typical, it would explain what is happening when one

sees oscillation in Dec while guiding. As an experiment, I taped one of my

CCD images to a wall, set tracking rate to zero, and performed the same

experiment on RA. The results were identical to what I observed in Dec:

after backlash was used up, the mount would fail to move (or move a fraction

of the expected distance), and then would jump several multiples of the

expected distance, and then settle down into moving evenly again. This leads

me to conclude that perhaps this is a typical response.



I also tried reversing direction, and saw the same behavior.



I will continue testing, varying some other variables. A quick final test

(it was 5am!) suggested that a more carefully balanced load may reduce or

eliminate this problem. The load for most of these tests was light but not

carefully balanced, and I tried a more balanced load on the last run just to

see what happened. I also tried using various degrees of backlash

compensation, and if I had almost but not quite enough compensation, the

first move was still somewhat more variable in magnitude than I would have

liked but the problem was greatly reduced. I've always gotten better guiding

with carefully set backlash compensation (just slightly less than needed to

eliminate backlash), and these results might explain why that has been

beneficial for me with a number of AP mounts I've used. It also suggests

that having a finer level of control over the amount of backlash

compensation (say 100 levels instead of 10) should prove useful.



Although these results are somewhat preliminary, given the lengthy

discussions here on the subject of Dec guiding, I thought they were worth

putting on the table. If this occurs in the field, then it would certainly

be capable of driving an oscillation.



Ron Wodaski

The New CCD Astronomy

www.newastro.com







----------------------------

#4535 Mar 8, 2002

In a message dated 3/8/2002 3:58:34 PM Pacific Standard Time, ronw@...

writes:



> As an experiment, I taped one of my

> CCD images to a wall, set tracking rate to zero, and performed the same

> experiment on RA



In actual use, there si not backlash ever in RA since the motors never

reverse, just slow down and speed up. In Dec one needs not reverse to track a

slow drift because the drift never reverses - always proceeds in one

direction. If you do reverse the Dec, you are merely chasing the seeing,

something that is not recommended.



Roland Christen





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



----------------------------

#4536 Mar 8, 2002

Right. One fellow here who had this problem put in a switch to turn off

corrections in one direction in Dec, and got better guiding just like that.

It might be useful for camera software to look for the trend in Dec and

offer to turn off corrections in one direction, or even do it automatically

so the operator doesn't have to bother.



Ron Wodaski

The New CCD Astronomy

www.newastro.com





-----Original Message-----

From: chris1011@... [mailto:chris1011@...]

Sent: Friday, March 08, 2002 4:13 PM

To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Results of backlash experiments on AP 400 GTO





In a message dated 3/8/2002 3:58:34 PM Pacific Standard Time,

ronw@...

writes:



> As an experiment, I taped one of my

> CCD images to a wall, set tracking rate to zero, and performed the same

> experiment on RA



In actual use, there si not backlash ever in RA since the motors never

reverse, just slow down and speed up. In Dec one needs not reverse to track

a

slow drift because the drift never reverses - always proceeds in one

direction. If you do reverse the Dec, you are merely chasing the seeing,

something that is not recommended.



Roland Christen





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list

see groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto



Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/



----------------------------

#4538 Mar 8, 2002

Ron,



Nice piece of work!



John Menke





Ron Wodaski wrote: >

> I am writing a Visual Basic program that will, among other things, measure

> your backlash in time and/or in arcseconds. In one approach to this

> measurement, I wrote code that alternately takes a short exposure and then



----------------------------

#8559 Sep 8, 2003

I hope it is not inappropriate to mention that we have a new case

offering. Just introduced today. We will be offering it for the

AP600E GTO also.



www.scopeguard.com/Page11.html



Regards,

Don



----------------------------

#21137 Feb 16 6:02 AM

I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't make any

practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have time.

Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to firmware

4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

UNITRON).

Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local sidereal

time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in Keypad.

Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery in

time). But:

1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or Park3,

these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in West,

and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to the same

star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the mount

but points toward another direction.

Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the mount,

without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount correctly

slewed to stars and planets.



----------------------------

#21141 Feb 16 10:19 AM

Hello Mr. Lombardo,







It may be that the wrong chip was installed in your GTOCP2 control box.

There are two versions that are used in 400GTO's and 600EGTO's depending

on the gear reduction that is used on the motors. The versions with

"K" in front of the version letter (i.e. "KD) are for units that employ

32:1 gearboxes, while the chips that have a version letter that is not

preceded by a "K" are for units with 19:1 gearboxes. The two versions

are NOT interchangeable, and using the wrong chip will cause the problem

you are describing.







Mag. 7 skies!







Howard Hedlund



Astro-Physics, Inc.



815-282-1513



---------------



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

Of bill_lombardo_bill

Sent: Saturday, February 16, 2008 8:03 AM

To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

Subject: [ap-gto] Retirement pain, 400 GTO, KD chip, firmware 4.12







I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't make any

practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have time.

Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to firmware

4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

UNITRON).

Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local sidereal

time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in Keypad.

Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery in

time). But:

1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or Park3,

these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in West,

and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to the same

star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the mount

but points toward another direction.

Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the mount,

without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount correctly

slewed to stars and planets.











[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]







----------------------------

#21144 Feb 16 11:44 AM

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "bill_lombardo_bill"

bill_lombardo@...> wrote: >

> I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't make

any > practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have

time. > Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to firmware

> 4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

> UNITRON).

> Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

> latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local

sidereal > time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in

Keypad. > Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery in

> time). But:

> 1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or

Park3, > these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

> simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

> 2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in

West, > and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to the

same > star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the

mount > but points toward another direction.

> Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

> PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the

mount, > without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount

correctly > slewed to stars and planets.

>

To the above message I can add that the GOTOCP2 can be connected to

PulseGuide 1.30 or Cartes du Ciel (which programs correctly read

Site, Time,Date, LST, stars coordinates from the mount/keypad)

following slew instructions (N;S;W;E)from the programs but the mount

fails to correctly locate park positions 1,2,3 as well to slew to

objects when has to change from East to West or vice-versa.



----------------------------

#21155 Feb 17 1:22 PM

Thanks Michael,



I also dropped some lines to the gentle Marj. It must be what you say

and I thank you for your kind information and generous interest.

In ap-gto group, I traced some information dt 11/27/2001 from a

certain ben 1t who, apparently, suffered the same mount-desease as I

do...in retirement.

Today I made some experiments, and I found that, roughtly, the

mount "exaggerates" by about 50% all movements in RA and Dec when I

pass from Park 1 to Park 2 and from Park 3 to Park 1. If this is the

ratio of the gears 32/19 (Howard likely knows the exact rate of the

implied KD overshooting), it must be that. Many compliments and

thanks indeed, Michael for your diagnosis.

I have only to check if I have to address to UNITRON Italy for the K

chip swap or to the kind Marj in AP.

PS My name is Fausto and Bill is a nickname derived from my fondness

for the great Bill Evans piano player.

Grazie and clear skies!

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, mrmgturner@... wrote:

>

> Bill,

>

> I also purchased a used AP400 GTO 2001 model in 2002. The previous

owner

> had updated the GTOCP2 to the "new" KD chip just before I purchased

the

> mount. When I would try the day time polar alignment using the

park 1 and

> park 2 method, the positions were always 90 degrees west of where

they

> should have been. A night time 1 or 2 star alignment resulted in

the same

> problem. I contacted Marj and within 3 minutes she had the

solution; my

> GTOCP2 should have had the "D" chip, not the "KD" chip. AP sent me

a new

> "D" chip, and the rest they say "is history". I now use firmware

v4.12 and

> mount has performed great for the last 6 years (with a backlash

adjustment

> now and then...)

>

> Michael

>

>

> At 11:19 AM 2/16/2008, you wrote:

>

> >Hello Mr. Lombardo,

> >

> >It may be that the wrong chip was installed in your GTOCP2 control

box.

> >There are two versions that are used in 400GTO's and 600EGTO's

depending

> >on the gear reduction that is used on the motors. The versions with

> >"K" in front of the version letter (i.e. "KD) are for units that

employ

> >32:1 gearboxes, while the chips that have a version letter that is

not

> >preceded by a "K" are for units with 19:1 gearboxes. The two

versions

> >are NOT interchangeable, and using the wrong chip will cause the

problem

> >you are describing.

> >

> >Mag. 7 skies!

> >

> >Howard Hedlund

> >

> >Astro-Physics, Inc.

> >

> >815-282-1513

> >

---------------

> >

> >From: mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> >[mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf

> >Of bill_lombardo_bill

> >Sent: Saturday, February 16, 2008 8:03 AM

> >To: mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>ap-gto@yahoogroups.com

> >Subject: [ap-gto] Retirement pain, 400 GTO, KD chip, firmware 4.12

> >

> >I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't make

any

> >practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have

time.

> >Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to firmware

> >4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

> >UNITRON).

> >Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

> >latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local

sidereal

> >time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in

Keypad.

> >Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery in

> >time). But:

> >1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or

Park3,

> >these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

> >simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

> >2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in

West,

> >and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to the

same

> >star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the

mount

> >but points toward another direction.

> >Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

> >PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the

mount,

> >without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount

correctly

> >slewed to stars and planets.

> >

> >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

> >

> >

>

> ----------

>

>

>

> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

>







----------------------------

#21164 Feb 18 8:16 AM

Please contact your Italian representative so he can determine what the

reason is for the system not working. It could be any number of things, wrong date,

wrong time, wrong longitude, wrong time zone, etc, etc. From your description

I cannot say for sure what it is.



Rolando



In a message dated 2/16/2008 8:31:49 AM Central Standard Time,

bill_lombardo@... writes:



> I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't make any

> practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have time.

> Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to firmware

> 4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

> UNITRON).

> Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

> latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local sidereal

> time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in Keypad.

> Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery in

> time). But:

> 1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or Park3,

> these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

> simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

> 2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in West,

> and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to the same

> star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the mount

> but points toward another direction.

> Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

> PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the mount,

> without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount correctly

> slewed to stars and planets.

>









**************

Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.



(living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-campos-duffy/

2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



----------------------------

#21166 Feb 18 9:29 AM

Thanks, Rolando. It is the KD chip in place of a D chip (gearbox

19.8:1)as the mount overshoots exactly in the proportion 32/19.8. --- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, chris1011@... wrote:

>

> Please contact your Italian representative so he can determine what

the

> reason is for the system not working. It could be any number of

things, wrong date,

> wrong time, wrong longitude, wrong time zone, etc, etc. From your

description

> I cannot say for sure what it is.

>

> Rolando

>

> In a message dated 2/16/2008 8:31:49 AM Central Standard Time,

> bill_lombardo@... writes:

>

>

> > I purchased a 400 GTO in 2000 with firmware 2.6, but I didn't

make any

> > practical use of it until now, as I reached retirement and I have

time.

> > Last week I upgraded chip in GTOCP2 and keypad software to

firmware

> > 4.12 with the help of an expert (of the italian AP representative

> > UNITRON).

> > Apparently everything is in order: keypad say "all systems go",

> > latitude N 45:39:58 ; longitude E 8:58:46 Time zone:01, local

sidereal

> > time, AP 400, are correctly entered and correctly displayed in

Keypad.

> > Database objects in Keypad are not corrupted (I changed battery

in

> > time). But:

> > 1) If I put the mount in Park 1 position and I pass to Park2 or

Park3,

> > these last positions are not reached (and vice-versa). No way to

> > simulate Polar alignment in daytime.

> > 2) If I point a star in the East near meridian with the mount in

West,

> > and I change the Meridian delay function, when I slew again to

the same

> > star the mount tries to reach the star on the other side of the

mount

> > but points toward another direction.

> > Is it me or my mount which needs urgent help or cure?

> > PS When I had firmware 2.6, two or three times I set outside the

mount,

> > without checking parking positions,and apparently the mount

correctly

> > slewed to stars and planets.

> >

>

>

>

>

> **************

> Ideas to please picky eaters. Watch video on AOL Living.

>

> (living.aol.com/video/how-to-please-your-picky-eater/rachel-

campos-duffy/

> 2050827?NCID=aolcmp00300000002598)

>

>

> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

>



----------------------------

#27481 Apr 13, 2010

Hello



I have just checked the DEC backlash of my newly purchased, second-hand

AP-400 GTO mount. I have used roughly the method described on AP pages - an

artificial star placed some 20m away, 600mm scope and 3mm eyepiece with

reticle (actually a 3-6mm Nagler in Vixen GA-4 w/o barlow).



Moved the star in N and S directions at 1x speed, counting how many seconds

it takes for the motors to take up the gear backlash. It appears to be

slightly less than 3s.



I presume this should be within the tolerance (I have recently tested few

mounts by major manufacturers and found them in the same order of

magnitude), but just want to ask more experienced users of AP mounts



Pawel Lancucki

Warsaw, Poland







----------------------------

#40025 Mar 23, 2013

Please contact privately, with any real interest. $3500 includes CP3 control



Counterweights etc



----------------------------

#48527 Aug 5, 2015

I'm looking for a 400GTO Mount to carry my AP Traveler. If anyone has one they are not using, I'd like to buy it.

Thanks,Joe



----------------------------

#48817 Aug 29, 2015

I do have a 600E for sale.



Chris Spratt

Victoria, BC



----------------------------

#48821 Aug 29, 2015

. . Chris,



Thanks for the offer but 'm really in need of the smallermount.



Thanks,

Joe

.. . . ..Joe Napolitano ---------------

founder/managerOak Canyon Astronomy Group .Clear Skies....

On 8/29/2015 9:57 AM,cspratt@islandnet.com [ap-gto] wrote:

.I do have a 600E for sale.



Chris Spratt

Victoria, BC



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