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Sky-Watcher EQ6 + Upgrade kit - Tracking & Guiding Question


Ohan Smit
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Good day

I have the opportunity buy a 2nd hand EQ6 for a great price and then buy a upgrade kit and make it a GOTO.

This would require of me to sell my current Celestron AVX and use the funds to purchase this bundle.

My only concern is its performance after the upgrade.

How is the tracking and is there a autoguider port included with the upgrade?

If so how is the performance when guided? is the standard gearboxes up to the task?

The only reason I am looking at this option is currently with all my toys mounted I am at 72.5% of my AVX's capacity with the SCT image setup(a guiding nightmare) and at 64.43% load capacity with the (soon to be fixed) refractor setup. (every detachable bit separately weighed ;) )

So this would give me some much needed breathing room, without actually spending a dime(I might have some spare change)

Is this a viable option over the AVX?

As always your inputs are highly appreciated.

Have a super day

Regards

Ohan

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Hi Ohan and welcome to SGL. :)

Your rationale is sound and the EQ6 is more solid, heavier load bearing, and tracks immaculately - it's almost a defacto standard in many obsys in the UK - many fine pics have been produced using it. I'm not really qualified to comment on how much better it will track than the AVX - someone will be along with the numbers for you soon enough.

Personally I'm not overly keen on the fiddling and complexity involved in fitting upgrade kits - I much prefer to buy complete systems that work out of the box. I would sell the AVX and buy a new or used NEQ6 Pro - but that's just me lol.

However it would handle your Edge imaging setup with ease - and anything lighter obviously. So just to say hi and welcome really. :)

Just had a look at your fabulous gallery - beautiful pics - took me right back to my time in SA. :)

Edited by brantuk
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Hi Ohan and welcome to SGL. :)

Your rationale is sound and the EQ6 is more solid, heavier load bearing, and tracks immaculately - it's almost a defacto standard in many obsys in the UK - many fine pics have been produced using it. I'm not really qualified to comment on how much better it will track than the AVX - someone will be along with the numbers for you soon enough.

Personally I'm not overly keen on the fiddling and complexity involved in fitting upgrade kits - I much prefer to buy complete systems that work out of the box. I would sell the AVX and buy a new or used NEQ6 Pro - but that's just me lol.

However it would handle your Edge imaging setup with ease - and anything lighter obviously. So just to say hi and welcome really. :)

Just had a look at your fabulous gallery - beautiful pics - took me right back to my time in SA. :)

Hi

Thank you for reinforcing my expectations of the EQ6. 

The thing is I can get a brand new EQ6 here is South Africa for 20000 ZAR, thats about 999 GBP. 8000 more ZAR than if I bought the secondhand EQ6 and give it a full mechanical overhaul with a new upgrade kit.

I saw this post by MikeD on SGL and it gave me enough motivation to want to do the upgrade, since I am he fiddler DIY type.

The Edge I would love to put through its paces and a mount upgrade like this esp with the EQMOD controls.. Im jelly of myself for thinking that might be in my grasp...

Thanks for the high and welcome ;)

I am truly glad you like me gallery and it created some nostalgia without my intent, I have a great passion and love for landscape photography and the astrophotography came along...

Kind Regards

Ohan

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have done this upgrade on an old EQ6 myself and it was very successful, especially when I moved on to EQMod which made it superb!

The EQ6 is not renowned for its tracking accuracy but responds so well to autoguiding that this is a non-issue and the ST4 guide port is part of the upgrade.

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I have done this upgrade on an old EQ6 myself and it was very successful, especially when I moved on to EQMod which made it superb!

The EQ6 is not renowned for its tracking accuracy but responds so well to autoguiding that this is a non-issue and the ST4 guide port is part of the upgrade.

Thanks for this tidbit of information. 

I'm now even more excited..

I will be using guiding and EQMod, so it seems I will be in the clear :D

Regards

Ohan

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The mount arrived!

Sorry but my friend photobombed my shot...

bMwSw42l.jpg?1

It is superior in weight to the AVX mount.

Here is my edge on the mount.

5Sf4BiTh.jpg

Will again update once I've fitted an upgrade kit which should be within the next few weeks.

Kind regards and clear skies

Ohan

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I get 30 mins subs out of my NEQ6 all day long both before and after the Rowan belt mod. Problems start to arise with longer focal lengths. i.e an RC8 with a focal with a focal Length 1624. Then the mount is on its limit.

Favorable information ol'chap :)

I will have 2000mm, 1400mm(sct with reducer) and 703mm focal lengths to use on the EQ6 once upgraded to pro.

Regards

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Hi Ohan,

I've also just bought an EQ6. Mine is an unused old stock item and looks about the same vintage as yours with the Illuminator control knob on the panel.

And I too am awaiting delivery of the SynScan upgrade kit, about  ten days away. Initially I'm going to use the mount for imaging with my camera and various lens up to 600mm.

I'll be following your progress with interest.

Cheers

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That will push the EQ6 close to it's  limits :) You are going to need to balance it very very well ( no trailing cables) and any wind will mean = game over!  I can get 12 min guiding out of mine for RGB work with an RC8 with a focal with a focal Length 1624

Here is an example. Its not perfect but one can live with it!

That is rather impressive :)

Star field is nice and sharp.

Did you use EQmod?

The limits of this particular mount will be tested when I eventually place it on a permanent pier. Another user on SGL had 25kg of counterweights on the one side and at least 25kg on the OTA side O___O.

Getting pin sharp stars with his 10" Newtonian @ 1200mm FL with a 80mm Refractor mounted on the OTA

Same vintage EQ6 plus the upgrade kit.  I linked it a few posts up. Madness :Envy:

My APO with everything loaded would come in at a mere 20 lbs(19.327lb to be precise), making me believe it should perform rather well.

Hi Ohan,

I've also just bought an EQ6. Mine is an unused old stock item and looks about the same vintage as yours with the Illuminator control knob on the panel.

And I too am awaiting delivery of the SynScan upgrade kit, about  ten days away. Initially I'm going to use the mount for imaging with my camera and various lens up to 600mm.

I'll be following your progress with interest.

Cheers

Great to know someone is on the same venture than myself.

I actually used the EQ6 Thursday night to view Saturn and collimate my SCT...

What a joyful experience, the slewing indoor when testing was utterly slow, motor speed 2-3 slow on the AVX, but when used when viewing through the EP, its buttery smooth with little to no backlash.

I was very surprised at how well it kept the object in the field of view, so primitive but yet very effective. The buttons when pressed on the controller remind my of arcade game controller buttons.

I have a feeling the EQ6 upgraded would respond very well to guiding and control by EQmod(a subject I am completely unfamiliar with).

Excitement courses through my veins at both the soon to be upgraded mount and my almost complete APO.

Clear skies and good wishes

Regards

Ohan 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Keep us updated, particularly with any little hints re installation.

Mine's still a week away.

The upgrade itself is very straight forward and should require no more than 30 minutes to complete if you take your time, its 4 screws, old mobo out, 2 screws DEC motor out, 2 screws RA motor out, then everything in reverse, plug in the new motors to the Mobo and the LED for the polarscope and you are ready to go.

My mod on the other hand produced its own series of problems yesterday when I did the dissembling/reassembling upgrade hybrid.

Firstly all three Teflon washers in the DEC axis came out broken in bits. Then I tried sourcing them at local H/W stores, pffft....

So I traced the one washer with a permanent marker, then cut out the appropriate size washer from a old ice cream holder lid.

This was my work "bench". During this procedure I encountered so much grease that I staid far away from any camera equipment.

It's a two man job ;)

94v3Z6Fh.jpg

Almost clean, from the horrid Synta goop.

qjk4wE5h.jpg

Wish I could provide more pictures but alas, time was used otherwise.

Regards

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Wow, you sure did strip it down. Hope you remembered where all the bits came from.

As my mount is a new/unused one, I'm hoping I'm a few years away from doing the strip down.

Haha indeed :)

It's working perfectly, just need to fine tune the worm gears to eliminate the play in the RA axis :)

Going to do so tonight after work :D

Mine was 7 years old and used, and even tough I re-used all the original bearings except the conical bearing in the RA axis, the whole mount is a lot more fluent in the turning of the DEC and RA axis.

Previously it was quite tight and uneven in its turning with the clutches unlocked.

Regards 

Edited by Ohan Smit
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