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All the gear, no idea


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Hi everyone,

As the title suggests I fall into the all the gear no idea catagory. I am really struggling with my Celestron 1100 CPC, HD pro wedge and Starsense. Could some kind person either show me in picture form (really that bad) or talk me through the alignment process with the wedge and  Starsense. I have read the manual back to front and tried various other sources but just can't get my head around it.  Should the face of the wedge be pointing towards the North or South,  What position should the scope be in at the start etc etc. I think I am losing the plot with this and it is really starting to get to me now as I spend half the night trying to do something that should be so easy or at least it should for all the money I have thrown at       Trying simplifying my viewing time.

Please just pretend that I am a complete numpty and take it from there with your advise. That said I don't really want to hear about I don't use that or wouldn't have brought that, I have what I have and just want to use it to the best of my limited ability .

Thanks in advance.

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Hi, I would expect that you may receive some advice on this by others on here.  An additional suggestion, would be to look up, depending on where you live, your local astronomical society, many run workshops particularly suited for assisting beginners and people with scopes such as yours, in which experienced members will be able to provide first hand assistance, then of course its easy when you know how. 

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Have a look on YouTube, there are a few guides on how to polar align a fork mounted scope on a wedge.

Don't worry, it's not you, the manuals really are rubbish ;)

 

edit: If you are doing visual you can just not use the wedge, that is only really needed for imaging.

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The face of the wedge should point north to start - and make sure you have a leg under it so it doesn't overbalance and tip up. The tripod will have two legs pointing north and one pointing south. Then elevate the tube so it's "in line" with the forks pointing north - and dial in your lattitude on the altitude screw raising the whole lot up pointing towards the celestial pole. Then use the azimuth screws (left/right) to acquire the star.

That's your rough starting position which is entirely manual - the closer you are to that, the better your chances of accurate alignment using the software. Someone else will advise on refinement using Starsense - which I don't use cos I don't do AP with my CPC - only observing. Hope that helps get you going though. :)

(See pic 6.3 on page 30 of the manual)

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Is Starsense an integral part or is it optional ?

I ask as I am reading a lot of problems with Starsense and goto's. It almost seems that they are in competition with each other. My goto's are too old for anything like Starsense and also wrong make but a farly simple 2 star alignment all done by the scope and 2 eyes works easily and I suspect much quicker then the more up to date "auto" and "helpful", "user friendly (hostile)" items. Thought basically is dump the Starsense if possible to do so.

What is your location, nearest club may not be active for a month but there may be an alternative or even a person close enough. Assumes that you are in the UK.

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