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EQMod Nightmares!


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Hello all,

On two occasions now I've run into problems using EQMod with my Skywatcher 200P and HEQ5 mount. The problem occurs when trying to control the mount using a game pad controller. Back at home everything seems to be working fine once I've calibrated the controller using the inbuilt calibration function. Once on site I set up perform the polar alignment using the EQMod software and then slew the telescope to a star using Ctrl-1 in Stellarium to perform a star calibration. When I try to use the game pad to make adjustments to where the scope is pointing it sometimes moves a bit then stops and then doesn't respond. Sometimes it doesn't respond at all and at other times there is a massive delay between issueing the command and the scope responding. I then restart stellarium scope and EQmod and start again. After the restart it will go through a similar patern of events and in the end I just have to lug my laptop around and make all the adjustments by clicking on the buttons within EQmod. It's a right pain.

Has anyone had any similar experiences?

Ed

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Have you set the rate sliders next to the NSEW cross? I think the default is 1 so the directions don't do anything beyond North and South at a rate of 1. Setting the sliders to a faster rate allows you to slew around.

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What is different to home from the remote site? The reason I ask is that I had similar issue and I put it down to the difference in power source. At home with mains power my mount was perfect (wireless controller) but when I went to battery pack it was just exactly as you say, intermittent but enough to wind me right up.

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You have to recalibrate the controller every time you set up - it only takes a few seconds. Make sure the controller is on, initialise the controller and then calibrate the two joysticks by waggling them to all their limits - should work. Also you may be at "rate 1" which will move the mount at siderial rate - use the gamepad buttons to get rate 3 or 4 (or use the laptop if you are not sure which buttons!) and try - the mount should slew OK, then reduce the rate for fine control.

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Hi Parus,

Yes I've set the rates up just fine. I can incremet and decrement the rate presets fine but as soon as I try to use the analog joypad or direction buttons it just doesn't like it. As I mentioned I've had it working just fine in my living room but as soon as i need it to work for real it plays up - typical.

I was wondering whether it was the length of time that it sits there when on site. In the living room it wasn't on for very long in comparison.

Thanks for your suggestion.

Ed

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Veracocha, Well yes that is a difference between my home and remote setup too. At home I used the mains power source but i used a 17Ah Maplin power tank on site. I'm not entirly sure how this could manifest itself though as the power should be regulated by my laptop.

Cheers

Ed

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Yes Windows show it as working. Also just remembered something else that happens. When i issue a command EQmod indicates the change then almost instantly changes the setting back to what it was before? Weird!

Any ideas?

Cheers

Ed

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I don't think it's a power issue as when I use my laptop and slew the scope using EQMOD by pressing the arrow keys it works fine. It's something between the game pad and laptop which is screwing up I think.

Ed

Edited by EdF_uk
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I found I had intermittent problems with the gamepad and as you say it works at home but not out in the field. I noticed when I used it at home the gamepad was not far away from the receiver but when I was outside then the distance had increased from the receiver to the gamepad and I had my troubles. I changed the batteries in the game pad and put the receiver onto a USB extension cable which brought it closer to the scope. That means the RF signal was fine when at home but weaker when I was outside. Maybe this is your problem.

Neil

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I also had a problem with my own gamepad: The batteries clip between a couple of very flimsy springs made of thin shiny wire. On my pad it was possible for one (or both) of the batteries to push the wire springs "out of the way" on insertion so that there was no contact at all (or sometimes just intermittent contact). It's unlikely you have the same problem but may be worth a look at the battery contacts.

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