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Lonestar70

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About Lonestar70

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    Proto Star

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    Male
  • Interests
    Astrophotography, Wildlife Studies and photography, Model engineering, Model steam engines and steamboats, computers and programming, electronics and Amateur radio (GM8ICC).
  • Location
    West Coast Scotland
  1. Don't be in to much of a hurry to blame the motherboard... there are several other possibilities. 1, Does the small red indicator on the mount show a steady red when powered up?... if not then it could be a dodgy power lead or a bad connection on the input socket... see 3 below. 2, If the red light is on and steady, try using a straight through Ethernet cable (same as the one connecting your PC/laptop to your router) to connect the handset to the mount... if this allows the handset to power up then the curly cable is the problem... a reasonably common problem for these handsets. 3, Failing the above, remove the small front cover where the mount power and handset input are located... this will expose a small PCB which is separate from the motherboard... check the solder connections for the handset input socket and the power socket... it is not unusual to find either or both of these developing dodgy joints over time... my own HEQ5 developed just such a fault after a couple of years and a quick touch up with the soldering iron sorted it. 4, You can check if the handset works by powering it via the socket on the lower end... this would normally be used to update the handset software. Disconnect the handset from the mount... Hold down the 0 and 8 keys together then plug in the power connector... the handset should give a couple of bleeps and then display the current software loaded in the handset... if this works then the handset is probably OK and the problem lies with either the curly cable or maybe one of the above sockets on the small input board. If none of the above resolve the problem then I would agree with your suspected motherboard failure. Hope you can get it sorted.
  2. Sound like a possible power issue. How are you powering your mount?... if using a battery, check the voltage output from it under load (mount etc connected and switched on). If it is less than 12v then you need to recharge the battery. If you are using a mains driven DC power supply then check it's output voltage and also the connecting cable from supply to mount... note also: a DC power supply (or battery)should be capable of at least 5 amps continuous output at the DC voltage being used. The handset gets it's power from the mount so any issue with the mount supply will effect the handset. Hope this helps.
  3. Hi Jonathan, You can get a replacement handset cable from FLO. https://www.firstlightoptics.com/astronomy-cables-leads-accessories/lynx-astro-premium-handset-cables-for-sky-watcher-eq6-or-neq6-syntrek-pro-mounts.html Not overly cheap but better than a blown up Mother Board and I don't think you will find a better one, or cheaper. Hope this helps.
  4. Hi Shimrod and Mike, You will need to have a 2" dia extension of between 55 -65 mm optical length to compensate for the removal of the diagonal. This should achieve focus with the 533 at around the halfway point of the outward focuser travel. The focal point of the ED80 is approx 110mm from the outer face of the focuser draw tube without the diagonal fitted, and with the focuser fully retracted. Hope this helps. Good luck and clear sky's.
  5. Hi FMA, Sorry to read that your mount has to be returned, however, Flo will get you sorted in as short a time as possible... they are one of the best, if not the best, in the business.
  6. Hi guys, The modem/router to PC/laptop path does not use all the wires in the RJ45 connector there are 2 or 3 unused in that function. These spare wires are often used, by various manufacturers, for other things when the cables are used in a different application, like carrying power to/from mount and handset. The only common ones would be TX data, RX data, possibly one or two handshake lines and the common ground (0v) connection. The best way to check is to use the router cable between the mount and the handset.
  7. It looks like you have the mount powered correctly , however, this does not confirm that the curly cable is not damaged. I had mine break one of the wires internally due to the flexing of the lead during use out in the cold... sadly it is a fairly common problem with Synta cables. You could try using a Cat5 straight through patch cable (same as the one connecting your pc/laptop to your router) to eliminate this possibility. If that does not solve the problem then it is possible that there is a fault either in the HEQ5 mount power distribution or in the handset in which case you should contact your supplier to seek their advice, I assume it is still under warranty, but even if it is not they should be able to get you sorted.
  8. I concur with Seelive, however, it could also be that the curly cable is faulty and not picking up power from the mount. Be very careful if you test the mount with a meter whilst it is powered... it would be quite easy to short out the pins possibly damaging the circuit board.
  9. Hi FMA, More information required to find out possible solution. What mount are you trying to set up? (make and model number) How are you powering it? And how are you connecting the handset to the mount?... i.e. What cable are you using to connect the handset? If the mount is powered properly it should send power to the handset... no other connections are required.
  10. Don't give up yet, there are several places to purchase gears from. First thing is to measure the following: - as accurately as possible (preferably using a vernier caliper or Micrometer). Take these measurements in both Imperial and Metric. 1. The outside diameter across the tips of 2 diametrical opposed teeth (use relatively undamaged teeth). 2, The OD of the hub section. 3. The bore through the hub. 4. The thickness of the gear section. 5. The thickness of the hub section. or the total thickness of gear and hub. From this you can determine if the gear is Imperial (DP =Diametral Pitch) or Metric ( MOD = Module pitch). For DP use : - Number of teeth +2 / OD in inches = DP. Answer should be a whole number and from you pictures the gear appears to be 32 or 40DP For MOD : - OD in mm / Number of teeth+2 = MOD. Valid MOD numbers would be 1, 0.9, 0.8, 0.75,0.7, 0.6,0.5, 0.4, 0.3 and 0.25. Again,from your pictures, I would guess yours is either 0.8, 0.75 or 0.7 MOD Once you have established if the gear is Imperial or Metric you can look for a suitable one. A good source in the UK is : - https://hpcgears.com/ They do Delrin (white nylon/plastic) and metal gears in a whole host of sizes and styles. If you are unsure of your results then post again here with what you have and we can advise or assist further. Even if the closest you can buy is a bit thicker or the hub to big/long... 10 minutes in a lathe could rectify those dimensions and I would be happy to do this for you if necessary. Good luck and I hope you can get your mount back up and running again soon.
  11. The grub screws are M5 x 0.8mm pitch and are approx 6mm long. Hope this helps.
  12. Hi Mike, The ED80 focal length includes the optical length of the 90 degree diagonal. If you remove the diagonal, to attach a camera to the focuser draw tube, then you will need to use the extension to replace the optical distance originally provided by the diagonal and connect your camera to the extension... otherwise you will not have enough outward travel on the scopes focuser to reach focus. If you, eventually, obtain a focal reducer/field flattener then the extension will not be required since the focal reducer/field flattener does the same job, however this is where the 55mm back focus distance comes into play. The reducer/field flattener requires that the camera sensor is located at 55mm from the rear flat face of the reducer/field flattener (this is an optical distance imposed by the construction/design of the reducer/field flattener) which will entail the need for a short extension of approx 38.5mm total length (assuming your cameras back focus is 6.5mm). Some of this 38.5mm could be provided by the optical path length of a filter mechanism (should you fit one) with only a small amount of extra extension required to make up any difference... but that is for the future. I hope this helps you to understand what is required and why. Good luck and clear skies.
  13. Regardless of which capture software you use the Nikon D300 will still require the serial shutter control cable for Manual long exposures and the standard USB download cable. ControlMyNikon is not the best for astro use, BackyardNikon is much better since it was designed for Astrophotography. I have both and BackyardNikon is way better for astro, but ControlMyNIkon is better suited to tethered daytime stuff. I am sure APT will be just as good for astro since it too was written for that task. Dark skies.
  14. Commercial units are available, albeit not exactly cheap, but if you don't feel up to making your own using the data provided by Sven then you can get what you need from here: - http://www.store.shoestringastronomy.com/products_ds.htm You would need the DSUSB unit and then scroll down to find the appropriate camera connection cable for the D300. You need to use this cable for the shutter release and your standard USB download cable to save/transfer pictures to your PC. I use a D90 Nikon with a homebuilt cable similar to that shown by Sven. Hope this helps.
  15. The oscillations may be due to the grubscrews in the coupler not being aligned and tightened correctly. Make sure that one of the pair is properly aligned with the flat on the motor unit output shaft and fully tighten this one first, then tighten the second one. It is possible you have tightened the second one fully which would cause the shaft to tilt in the coupler. Hope this helps.
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