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bob4026

SkyAlign frustration

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Hi all,

Well as i'm sure you know, the clouds finally cleared long enough for me to get the scope set up and attempt to look at some stuff.

Trouble is, after following the instructions to the letter, (chose bright stars far apart, bang in the middle of the viewer) five attempts at SkyAlign failed  :hmh: so I reverted to my binos. Proper, proper fed up. :help:

Can anyone shed any light on this for me please?

Thanks everyone...

ATB

Bob

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Its 99% operator error, once its sorted you laugh at the reason......

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It is going to be data, so make sure you read everything and make no assumptions.

Easy option is to write down on a sheet of paper everything as in:

Longitude = 2 degrees 15 minutes West

Latitude = 53 degrees 54 North

Time Zone = UTC , maybe UTC 0

Whatever else.

Do NOT do it at the scope people can easily swap things round in their head, Lat and Long being the obvious 2 to swap.

Then sit with the scope and enter it a bit at a time, reading what the scope requests and match it up the the sheet of paper.

You may need to hit the Reset option.

Seems that once data is wrong clearing it all out is a problem, simply something remains.

As already mentioned the date is in US format, mm/dd/yy, if you have that wrong then at present the "wrong" option is valid, the scope is effectively told it is October 1st..

Worst case:

If you have Long and Lat round the wrong way and the date the wrong way then the poor scope thinks it is Northern Brazil and that it is October 1st. :D :D :D :D 

Will say used to be many people having problems with Skyalign, whatever the reason(s) it never quite seemed to operate seamlessly.

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Thanks for the help so far, what a top site this is. It's almost as if people are just waiting to help those of us having trouble. :headbang:

The date has been entered correctly, but I am a little confused as to the Long and Lat as it only asked me to verify which country and nearest city (Manchester entered)

What I did notice was as the information scrolled across the screen of the hand held unit, it was very difficult to read. OK when simply displaying information, but almost unreadable when moving. (Nowt wrong with me peepers)

I have no doubt it is user error, but I have watched a couple of helpful youTube videos, and read the full instructions (as opposed to the `quick start` guide) and I think I have entered the information correctly. Maybe i'll be lucky and get another clear nite this week to have another go at it.

Thanks again everyone, and by all means keep the help coming. Obviously i'll report back when I have nailed it, so others can benefit - i'm afraid as a newbie I can't pay much forward yet due to my ignorance.

ATB

Bob

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Time setting can be complicated too.

You need to enter time zone, time, and maybe Daylight Saving Time (DST) Yes/No.

I still get confused by DST, so I always have DST off and enter GMT.

Michael 

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I think it defaults to USA cities, and there is a Manchester in New Hampshire.

Edited by wheresthetorch?
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I think that you can adjust the rate of the scrolling text to slow it up. Check the manual.

Peter

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You can definitely adjust the scroll rate from the handset menus. You can also make the text bold which makes it easier to see. As others have mentioned your data needs to be correct.

A quick checklist

Date mm/dd/yy

Time should be universal time with daylight saving or DST off

Set up custom time site in handset and enter coordinates in degrees, minutes and seconds for your observing location.You can get this info off the web. Longitude is entered first then latitude.

Skyalign needs 3 stars ,they need to be above 30 degrees and lower than 70 degrees in your view. Form a large triangle in the sky.

A better more reliable option is 2 star auto align. You just need to know the name of one star, select it from the list and align. The handset will then give you a choice of a second star and will automatically slew to it. I found this far more effective than Skyalign and it is just as accurate. The third star in skyalign only confirms position of the other 2, hence skyalign is designed for people who may not know the names of any stars.

One tip is when you enter the approach alignment for your stars ensure you move the scope in the same direction. Most do this from the bottom left , then up and moving to the right to land the star dead centre. You can defocus the star as well to make it into a large doughnut in the view which helps centre it.

So its just practice, we all make mistskes, you will get there!

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Hi all,

Well as i'm sure you know, the clouds finally cleared long enough for me to get the scope set up and attempt to look at some stuff.

Trouble is, after following the instructions to the letter, (chose bright stars far apart, bang in the middle of the viewer) five attempts at SkyAlign failed  :hmh: so I reverted to my binos. Proper, proper fed up. :help:

Can anyone shed any light on this for me please?

Thanks everyone...

ATB

Bob

Hello Bob.

I am in Burnley and I have also had a Nexstar type scope of the same sort of mount. If you liked we could arrange to meet and go through things together.

I currently use a SW Goto but the principles are the same. I can almost guarantee its data thats the issue.

Steve

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I notice the scope can run off AA batteries. This can cause problems, you are much better off using a 12v power supply, such as a car jumpstarter with 12v cigarette lighter outputs. The AAs will only last a short time (less than an hour, especially in the cold). Once they start to go all hell breaks loose as far as alignment goes.

Edited by Coastliner

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I notice the scope can run off AA batteries. This can cause problems, you are much better off using a 12v power supply, such as a car jumpstarter with 12v cigarette lighter outputs. The AAs will only last a short time (less than an hour, especially in the cold). Once they start to go all hell breaks loose as far as alignment goes.

Good point there, happy to bring my power pack along with me also.

Steve

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Hi Steve,

Very generous offer that mate, and I will take you up on it if that's ok? There will be a brew in it for ya, and maybe a drop of malt... :coffee2:

I have also bought a power pack (7ah) and it is charged ready to go!

All we need is a clear sky and a means of contact.

Cheers

Bob

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Problem solved although I will leave it up to Bob to explain ;-)

Steve

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Problem solved although I will leave it up to Bob to explain ;-)

Steve

C'mon Bob!

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Alright, alright....

I'm here with me tail between me legs.

Steve (bomberbaz) was kind enough to pop round last nite to help sort the problem with my scope.....

Only it wasn't the scope!

Yeah, I know. I can hear the chuckles from here. It turns out, that during the set up procedure, I was putting the time into skyalign as `DST` instead of standard time. The computer obv couldn't ratify all the criteria and come up with the right answer.

So it's official. I'm numb. I thought we were in DST ok? :confused5:

Massive thank you to Steve, who gave up a couple of hours of his valuable time to help out a thicky. Enjoyed a couple of hours viewing last nite thanks to you Steve. Top man. :icon_salut:

ATB

Bob

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Alright, alright....

I'm here with me tail between me legs.

Steve (bomberbaz) was kind enough to pop round last nite to help sort the problem with my scope.....

Only it wasn't the scope!

Yeah, I know. I can hear the chuckles from here. It turns out, that during the set up procedure, I was putting the time into skyalign as `DST` instead of standard time. The computer obv couldn't ratify all the criteria and come up with the right answer.

So it's official. I'm numb. I thought we were in DST ok? :confused5:

Massive thank you to Steve, who gave up a couple of hours of his valuable time to help out a thicky. Enjoyed a couple of hours viewing last nite thanks to you Steve. Top man. :icon_salut:

ATB

Bob

You weren't the first to do user error on goto and you won't be the last Bob.

I was glad to be of assistance to you and that we got it all sorted out, onwards and upwards.  Good meeting a fellow stargazer and looking forward to going out to a dark site with you in the near future. 

Cheers

Steve

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Cheers Steve, I shall look forward to that.

And thank you to everyone else who tried to sort me out.

ATB

Bob

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Hey, don't beat yourself up. I had a go at my AZ-EQ5GT tonight. Cursed the thing because it was telling me the moon was below the horizon, when I could see it about 45 degrees above the horizon. Then I remembered it is 2016, not 2015.

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I bought a go to sky align scope last month

Some simple but overlooked problems which happened to me

Ditch sky allign and go auto two star align (not two star). Easier to do and you know it's worked if the scope finds your second star

Make sure you're putting in correct date (USA)

Align finder scope first

Get a power tank to power - or other 12v power source, batteries do not last long and makes the scope unstable

Use stars far apart. I tried Vega then Deneb at first, didn't work so well. Vega and Aldeberan worked a treat

Make you don't nudge the scope when aligning

Do not pick stars overhead as the scope hits the tripod when moving

Hope this helps

Good luck

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