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2nd night out. HEQ5 PRO tracking to completely different place yet again


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Hello again friendly forum! 

Recently I upgraded from an old Vixen refractor to a Skywatcher 200 P reflector with a HEQ5 Pro mount.

My first night out was pretty horrible as I couldn't even find polaris due to a mass of trees. But instead I spun the telescope around and took a variety of photos of the moon to make a huge a moasaic. So I made turned a bad night into a semi decent one (see my profile post if interested.)

Finally on my second light, the moon had gone from the sky and I found polaris and I aligned my polar scope up perfectly (SUCCESS!). The last time the illuminated polar scope was so bright I couldn't see polaris through it, but this time a combination of turning the mount on and off helped me align the scope as I wanted.

So I entered in all the useful coordinates/time and started the 3 star alignment process. I chose Pleiades of Tauros to the South as I could see it. So I accepted the target chosen and the mount started slewing but instead of pointing anywhere near the target, it pointed up to the west. I am very confused and still have no idea how it's happening as I've been checking the forums but I'm pretty certain I'm entering incorrect coordinates.

Could somebody please help me format the location of my scope in a format the SYNSCAN will understand. 

Thanks for any advice! I'd love to get my setup sorted this month as I hear January is a good mont hfor astronomy, planetary-wise at least!

Cheers,

Tom

 

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Last time I had issues with my HEQ5 tracking/goto... it was all down to a bad power supply. 

 

The HEQ5 is REALLY fussy with having a good power source.  How do youpower yours?

Ant

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1 minute ago, MattJenko said:

Also, check the date time, as this needs to be in US format, with month first. This can cause mayhem as well, and would put stars further West at the moment, as instead of 3rd Jan, it would think it is 1st March.

That is far more likely to be an issue than anything else :)

The amount of times I do that lol

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Hiya, is this the HEQ5 you bought from me? The mount works like a charm so I'm certain it's just something you've not quite entered right. I'm getting ready for work but will check this thread tonight about 10 ish. We'll get you up and running :) Just bear in mind that the 12v 5amp supply I throw in isn't regulated as stated at the time of purchase...wasn't a problem in the summer/autumn but it's getting pretty cold now so the volts might be dropping a bit too much. Other than this there are so many things you can enter not quite right even if you've owned Goto's for years.

Try not to sweat it if this is your first goto mate :) 

I'll check in later!  

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Right, things I can think of to check off the top of my head:

-Make sure the LED on the mount is solid red and isn't flashing, a flashing light can indicate a poor power supply. 

-Make sure it is definitely Polaris you are looking at through the polar scope

- Make sure the mount is in the home position and the clutch levers tightened before you do a 1,2,3 star allignment.

-Correct time zone

-Correct format time and date

-Daylight saving currently = No

-Correct format co-ordinates (really easy to get this wrong)

I'd try a two star alignment using a wide angle eyepiece to find the star, then fine adjust using a high power eyepiece (de-focusing the star will make it easier to centre!)

I can't think of anything else obvious. If I get time I'll try and find a vid for the goto setup, maybe there is one on Youtube which might click any errors into place?

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Cheers for all the help guys, I'll have to give this a whirl the next time I'm out, been rather busy recently.

I honestly think that it's the coordinates format that I'm entering that are incorrect but I will check that soon!

18 hours ago, JemC said:

There is this app for your co-ords on Android app store,

SynscanInit 2

Not sure if it's on iPhone

I've downloaded the Synscan Init 2 app and it seems that unless you have mobile data, the app doesn't know what to do. I have working Wi-Fi but it seems that is not enough! :(

18 hours ago, Ant said:

Last time I had issues with my HEQ5 tracking/goto... it was all down to a bad power supply. 

 

The HEQ5 is REALLY fussy with having a good power source.  How do youpower yours?

Ant

I use a mains AC 220-240v to 12V convertor and it seems to be working correctly. The LED stays constant so I assume that the power is decent. Also cheers for removing my map! (I'm an idiot).

 

18 hours ago, MattJenko said:

Also, check the date time, as this needs to be in US format, with month first. This can cause mayhem as well, and would put stars further West at the moment, as instead of 3rd Jan, it would think it is 1st March.

Thanks Matt, I have checked this several times when I was setting up, mainly because Chris pointed it out to me when showing me the mount working before I bought it. It also tells you to format the date mm/dd/yyyy. But still I will let you know when I next try if that was the problem!

 

38 minutes ago, Chris Lock said:

Right, things I can think of to check off the top of my head:

-Make sure the LED on the mount is solid red and isn't flashing, a flashing light can indicate a poor power supply. 

-Make sure it is definitely Polaris you are looking at through the polar scope

- Make sure the mount is in the home position and the clutch levers tightened before you do a 1,2,3 star allignment.

-Correct time zone

-Correct format time and date

-Daylight saving currently = No

-Correct format co-ordinates (really easy to get this wrong)

I'd try a two star alignment using a wide angle eyepiece to find the star, then fine adjust using a high power eyepiece (de-focusing the star will make it easier to centre!)

I can't think of anything else obvious. If I get time I'll try and find a vid for the goto setup, maybe there is one on Youtube which might click any errors into place?

Cheers for the list Chris, I'll have to go through one by one to make sure I have done it all correctly.

The cold temperatures right now don't exactly help trying to remember all of those correct inputs!

But that's astronomy in the winter for you.

Thank you all, I'll get back to you and let you know if I've done it!

- Tom

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  • 1 month later...

Just a quick update to this post as for 2 nights now I've been able to get my mount to track correctly.

I think the problem originally was the home position of the mount. It seems it was set up still to Chris' old position. 

I've recently set my own home position whilst the OTA is pointing directly at Polaris then starting alignment.

On 04/01/2017 at 14:20, JemC said:

SynscanInit 2

JemC,

This has definitely been one of the biggest helps to get me started quickly!

Thanks all for the support.

- Tom

 

 

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