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About SimM

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    Hampshire UK
  1. SimM

    HEQ5 Mount

    I have one that’s brand new and unused. It’s early 2020 vintage (green setting circles). I live 10 miles from Southampton. PM me for details. I realise that you have now bought one! Simon
  2. An M10 Allen bolt would be a good solution. No need to use a spanner for adjustment which is not so easy at night. Ball bar Allen keys allow access in tight spots. I bought my HEQ5 from RVO. The instructions didn’t say if the longer bolt goes above/below the mount. That is because it depends upon your latitude. RVO looked at their showroom model and gave advice. It was the opposite of what you need to do because the longer bolt goes in further so looks shorter! The type of handle is called a Bristol handle. They are used on machinery. Examples are available from Axminster for a few quid. The bolt lengths do need to be considered. If anyone has a bolt that needs to be shortened, they can be cut with a hacksaw e.g. put a nut over the thread, cut the bolt and clean up the end with a file, finally undo the nut to cleanup the thread. Simon
  3. Did you ask the manufacturer for more guidance on what is the optimum tension (how to get it right)? Was it replaced under the guarantee? Is it the same as the original or OEM? Is the toothed belt marked with a part number e.g. can it be bought elsewhere such as a motorcycle parts supplier with different qualities available? Did the failing axis have a “wobble” on the spindle? Did you fix this? Are the new spindles the same e.g. swapping them may result in a better fit on one - so less future issues? Simon
  4. I get the impression that Sky Safari with a Celestron WiFi dongle works “better” than the SkyWatcher equivalent. My understanding is that a mount and Hand Controller separate the operation into driving motors (mount electronics) which receives “guidance” from the “intelligence” (Hand Controller). So the App replacing the HC is a critical part and if the phone running this App is closed, goes out of range or goes to sleep on an IOS device the alignment isn’t retained. These “issues” determine that IOS users can’t use the ScanApp first and later switch to Sky Safari App on the same device e.g. iPad. The explanation may be that IOS is not multitasking like Linux or Android. This is overcome by using an Android device with Sky Safari because it runs the second App. With Celestron, there is better integration because the SynApp isn’t needed. There doesn’t seem much incentive for this to change e.g. Celestron and tie up with Sky Portal.
  5. How does it work (play) with just an iPad? Can you setup/align and then use an app e.g. Sky Safari to control scope? Or use HC and one App like Safari, all without a 2nd device?
  6. Is the interface box just providing more ports because a Celestron Mount has 1/2 extra sockets compare to a Skywatcher?
  7. If it's too bright, would a ND filter help reduce the glare? Anything that makes you a little uncomfortable can disturb your ability to resolve some of the details.
  8. Thanks John, this was my plan too. The best scope mounts isolate the mount/peer from the surrounding platform, so individual paving stones are preferable to a whole area. Do you always separate an EQ. mount/tripod/weight for short trips e.g. to the garden? Weight (yes), tripod (no)? Simon
  9. The supplied 1 1/4” diagonal has the two screws that are sticking out above the top of the diagonal. This stops Hyperion EP lying flat. MY EP fit 2” diagonals so I have a Baader Clicklock 2” SCT and a Baader 2” mirror diagonal. I also have one 2” EP. The supplied Celestron EP fits the supplied diagonal and the screws are not an issue but it doesn’t give a wide FOV of some of the other EP. To stick with one diagonal I can get the suggested adapter - thanks. Simon
  10. Thanks Robin, my Newtonian has legs without any rubber and it was recommended to use directly on a lawn. However, I think that the best surface is one that doesn't give much so the paving slabs (with a view to setting them in mortar in the lawn when I find my ideal spot) along with the rubber tripod "spikey" feet will be best. If someone jumps up and down on the lawn I can sense it on a nearby surface e.g. a chair, so I've concluded that the spongy lawn provides isolation from people movements, but the paving slabs provide a good reference point and increased stability especially if set in mortar. I have just "invested" in a folding aluminium table 9(4 ft x 2 ft). When I bought it I thought £30 was astronomical! But I think it's comforting to put things down on a table and know where they are, that they won't get trampled etc. One annoying thing is the compatibility between my Hyperion eyepieces and the Celestron supplied diagonal. The screws that mark eyepieces (and may perhaps offer some support too) have sides that are too big to allow the base of the Hyperions to fit flush against the diagonal. So I'm considering a twist lock or click lock solution. The more I think about it the groundsheet will not help dew and it's one more thing to trip over. BTW the table is black/light - should I have bought white/heavy? - LOL. Simon
  11. Thanks, I read all the documentation 100%. So yes, I have aligned it partially indoors, but I will do it again outside e.g. look almost a mile away at a distant object and this will be a complete setup/run-through in daylight too. Simon
  12. I'm back into astronomy after a small lull of 25+ years here in Southern UK. I still have a Newtonian on an equatorial mount - but these types of mounts seem to clash with my intuition and I find things a bit frustrating - having GOTO will partially tame this "problem" I have. Getting "ready" to use my Sky-Watcher HEQ5 mount, a Celestron 8" SCT and some BH Hyperion eyepieces. My interests are primarily visual e.g. planets and some DSO. Eventually I may add a 2nd OTA e.g. an 80ED or similar for simple imaging. Getting "steady", I also have folding aluminium table (for eyepieces, iPad and general clutter) and a rechargeable headlight with red LED (switch on/off without risk of turning on the white LEDs). Apart from the obvious, there was also the acquisition of a 12V power source - 17Ah battery (Halfords starter). Before I "go", I've identified a place in the garden for my backyard site. I'm fortunate that there are no major cities (15 miles away) and only one town (5 miles away), no street lights or annoying neighbour lights to contend with. All isn't however a panacea because there is still the UK weather to contend with. My tripod has some rubber feet, so I'm considering putting three circular stepping stones (later inset) on my back lawn. I have good sight south and out to east/west and clear sight backwards including Polaris for alignment, but without too many obstructions e.g. no houses but some trees. The idea was to have a GOTO position on the lawn that I could fine tune to be well placed and reasonably level. Some newbie questions: Is the tripod better on stones (as above) or or is the lawn better? I've seen people bring a groundsheet to a star party - does it keep the dew down, insulate, stop things getting lost in the grass, or have some other benefit that's not obvious? Simon
  13. If the eyepiece is in a diagonal with both screws "undone", then it sits squarely mounted and shouldn't have much side-to-side movement. Obviously it cannot be restrained without screws e.g. when slewing to a new position. If there are two screws, that are offset by 90 degrees, as the screws are tightened they align the eyepiece with the sides of the mount in two planes. Having three screws would make the alignment more like the alignment of a Finder Scope which varies the direction to deliberately align the FOV with the main optics. Depending on the order/degree in which the screws are tightened, it would realign the eyepiece so that it's no longer parallel with the sides.
  14. I worked out what is going on... When the scope is “parked” or the scope is turned on and a star alignment isn’t done then the scope stays “still”. Using Utility -> Show Position on the HC, I see the R.A. and Declination which are changing e.g. R.A. increases by one second each second! Only if I switch to show Alt Az will the numbers stay the same. If I didn’t skip a step in the Setup and do a one star alignment, then the scope will track R.A. correctly. Now Alt Az. Is constantly changing but R.A. and Declination are “stable”. By stable the values do vary a bit, but only for R.A. To get a clear understanding it helps to move the R.A. minutes slightly and the variation of seconds can be seen. It’s up to 0.4 seconds e.g. +/- 0.2 seconds in the right most number (arc sec) changes. When I listen to the mount I can detect a mechanical “swishing” sound several times a second as the R.A. moves. The numbers on the display update more frequently. So it is doing it’s thing OK. I’m pretty sure that when I get it outside it will be fine especially for visual use. Simon
  15. Lenovo sell a car charger to USB Type C. Many newer laptops can be powered by this type of input. 7Ah battery is at the low end but expect better from your car battery. Even if you can get it to work it would be best to see if the laptop can be powered but not charged and in a low power mode. If that’s not possible then a battery that powers your scope and dew heater etc. isn’t going to last. Trying to invert a battery to 240AC and then using a charger isn’t a viable thing from a small battery. Simon https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/charging-via-usb-c/
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