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Dual Axis DC motor drive


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Hi all, im considering popping a motor drive onto my EQ3-2. All searches lead to this drive

First Light Optics - Dual-Axis D.C. Motor Drive for EQ3-2

so im assuming this is the only drive on the market?

For me, astro photography is still a way of as it all costs a fair bit but would be nice to just be able to track objects automatically. I have a couple of questions

Are there other dual axis drives on the market?

Is it possible to still manually move your scope on the slow motion controls while the drive is attached?

Do the drives go through batteries at a fast rate? what sort of battery life time do they have?

Thanks in advance

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As far as I know the motors are specific to the mount, so thse will be the only ones that fit your EQ3-2. They are quite nice though. You can't move the mount with the slow-mo controls with the motors fitted, which can be a pain. I loosen the clutches, swing the mount around Dob style to point at my target object, the lock the clutches down and use the motor controls for final centring of the object in the eyepiece.

The EQ3-2 motors use 4x Dcell batteries and I get quite a few nights viewing out of a set. With the useless weather in the UK, it is actually a couple of months of use.

Edited by RikM
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The RA shaft is locked to the new RA motor so you cannot use the RA slo-mo cable, the DEC motor has its own clutch which can be loosened to allow the DEC slo-mo cable to be used. For normal slwing you need to unlock the RA clutch and manually move the telescope to its new position then relock the clutch to continue tracking. The battety pack will last a long time because of the low current drain.

The other option is the full Synscan goto upgrade.

Peter

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Hi,

I have just bought this very item for my Skywatcher 127 mak on an eq3-2 mount. From my own experience It's a brilliant add-on. Even without proper polar alignment I can still keep objects in view for a long time without needing to adjust. Well worth it IMO.

I've only had 3, 2-3hour sessions since fitting and I have yet to find any issues. I can see this being a very, very useful upgrade.

The ONLY modification I have made is putting some masking tape on the motor casings and the power cables and labelled them respectively for easier nighttime assembly :)

Hope it helps :)

Greg

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I agree with the above comments, the motors are worth adding, but without a polar scope to get accurate alingment you won't get the best out of them. I know it's more expense, but thats the joy of this hobby!

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