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Found 1 result

  1. Finally, I think I've cracked it. I'd always had some dicky power connection problems with my 8SE mount, and even after replacing the plug on the end of my SkyTron power cable with one that I believed was a better fit, it still showed problems. I ordered matching plug and socket from Maplins, but even then it was all too easy to lose power from just the slightest tug on the cable. While I had the mount apart (the power socket and switch are on a convenient panel which unscrews - it is not necessary to dismantle the whole mount to remove this panel, it is just a couple of screws) I had a closer look at the socket.. no wonder it is so easily disrupted, the main center pin is fine, it's the pathetic small outer contact that is the problem; it doesn't connect to the main metal part of the socket chassis as I expected, but is a small contact right at the bottom of the socket, meaning that the slightest movement could break the contact. This may be fine for most applications of this socket type but where there is a chance that the cable may be snagged it is a terrible choice in my opinion. I had read somewhere about replacing it with a BNC connection, or saw another scope that used one, something like that, so that is exactly what I have done. One order of matching BNC socket and plug from Maplin's later... Maplin parts: http://www.maplin.co...sis-socket-1570 http://www.maplin.co...onnector-476116 (despite the picture on the Maplin website, it is silver in colour and not gold) I needed to make my own hole in the plastic panel but this was easy enough to do with a small drill bit and some needle files to finish it off; I was careful to trim the hole so that it has a flat edge for the BNC socket, otherwise it would be possible to rotate the BNC socket which would make using it more difficult. One trick I missed but got lucky with was marking which wire goes to the center pin (positive), I had to take a guess at their relative positions as I had removed the old socket. If I were to do it again, I would mark the wire with a red marker pen or such as they are fairly nondescript grey ribbon cable wires that disappear into the mechanism. I made sure that I applied heat shrink to all of the connections to prevent any dew droplets from causing a short. A quick test and it all works, the connection is rock solid and I believe should never break under normal conditions. The wire would probably get pulled out of the BNC plug before it broke due to the BNC losing connection! Perhaps that is a slight loss of a 'safety feature', but in my experience if the cable is wrapped around it will be pulling sideways and would not pull the plug out of the socket, if I snag my foot on the cable, well that would be my hard cheese. It should be noted that I am fairly competent with a soldering iron, but if you can solder small wires together neatly then that should be all the skills required. I'll probably plug the hole with something. I'm optimistic that this should be the end of the power problem, only time will tell, the real test will be at 12am on a cold January morning.
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