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EQ6-R owners club


mikey2000
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On 15/12/2019 at 08:32, Miguel1983 said:

It is weird tough, i have 4 weights bought at different times, none of them slip.

You might want to work on your hand muscles 😅

Hehe , I should go harder with them 

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18 hours ago, OJ87 said:

Hehe , I should go harder with them 

Also check that the screw tip is not caught behind the black plastic insert inside the counter weight.  That happened to me once, and I kept tightening the screw but the weight just kept on slipping.  The plastic ring had shifted and the screw tip was pushing on the plastic rather than making contact with the counterweight shaft.

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On 10/12/2019 at 12:42, geeklee said:

I have the AZ-EQ6 GT Pro mount (so not the same) but it made this noise as well.  While doing some routine checks of firmware, software etc, I noticed Skywatcher had a selection of updated versions for these two mounts with the built in USB port.  After updating to the latest (3.07) it no longer makes this noise, but alas the motors now sound a little different so that has me thinking on the flip side of "if it ain't broke...".

I wondered if the noise was the motors not slowing in a measured way and the gears catching quickly at the end, but pure speculation with no knowledge 😁 

The latest firmware is here - http://skywatcher.com/download/software/motor-control-firmware/

There's the firmware loader and the firmware itself - being careful to select the correct one for your mount (and whether it has the built in USB port).  I didn't find the loader particularly clear for two reaons (1) The PDF instructions are geared to Serial connection.  When using the USB, it's not obvious but unchecking the box about using the hand controllers PC direct mode resulted in a very fast transfer & update over USB - assuming you're using USB 🙂. and (2) the version numbers are odd matched.  First, click "MC Version" to confirm the program can talk to your controller and you'll see what I mean - you can then match them up to the release notes.  Mine came with "3.03" but querying the controller showed something like X.Y.3 (I think)

i believe you're able to load older firmware if you don't like the new one for any reason.

Just an update to this, I DID do the firmware update for my motors and they certainly sound different, not had opportunity yet to try it out, but as the noise goes......it sounds promising.

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On 19/12/2019 at 08:17, Robny said:

Just an update to this, I DID do the firmware update for my motors and they certainly sound different, not had opportunity yet to try it out, but as the noise goes......it sounds promising.

Let us know how you get on.  They definitely sound different, but it's the official Skywatcher firmware so must be OK... right? 😄

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On 11/06/2018 at 13:29, chris-32 said:

Hi,

I still have some trouble of getting my new EQ6-R (first real mount) polar aligned. There are some pretty good videos on youtube, but they are all about the reticle of EQ5 or EQ6. In EQ6-R the reticle changed significantly as I see and the manual is not made for beginners like me, that's what I feel.

My main problem is how to set up the reticle clock to horizontal? If I had a clue how to make it horizontal, the rest should be easy. Just placing the polaris at the position/"time" the synscan tells me.

Any hints from you?

Thanks in advance!

Clear skies,

Chris

 

 

If you put polaris or some daylight object in center of your polarclock, Then use ONLY altitude bolts to send it down to the circle then this is your exact 6 o'clock position. Then calibrate or use a marker on your RA-setting circle and youre good to go:)

Edited by masjstovel
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On 18/12/2019 at 14:33, f300v10 said:

Also check that the screw tip is not caught behind the black plastic insert inside the counter weight.  That happened to me once, and I kept tightening the screw but the weight just kept on slipping.  The plastic ring had shifted and the screw tip was pushing on the plastic rather than making contact with the counterweight shaft.

Thanks for Tips 

I see you have a c11. How it does with the EQ6-R? I'm considering buying a second hand.Could you give some buying tips , so I can check it before buying it. I'm not familiar with SC telescopes.

Best regards, 

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I've had good luck with the C11 on the EQ6-R.  I use it with a focal reducer, so the effective focal length is 1850.  My typical guiding error is between 0.6 and 0.7 arcsec RMS, which I view as very good for a mount in the price range of the EQ6-R.

As far as buying recommendations for a used C11 I'm afraid I don't have any tips for you.  I bought mine new and am happy with it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Today my new eq6-r arrived and i am waiting for the mandatory two moth bad weather spell to pass in order to go out and play. It's a considerable step up from my 11 year old and trusty belt modded HEQ5-Pro but it was at its limit as i am adding more weight at my RC8'' scope. But i have a couple of questions

1) when i have the clutches released the axes are a bit stiff when balancing, does anyone else have this?

2) i usually polar align with my polar scope before drift aligning and i see that at the home position of the mount the reticle of the polar scope is upside down (6 is up 0 is down) from my experience form these polar scopes i need to have the 6 down and then polar allign, this is going to be an issue, since i will have to rotate the RA 180 degrees and the scope will be down in order to start the polar alignment and i want to avoid this. I would like to know if it is posiblle to rotate the reticle of the polar scope

3) after slewing and the mount stops i have the dreadful sound that the old eq-6s and heq5s have, again this is only when the mount stops and not when slewing, does anyone have this sound? It's not bad and only for a second but i believe i can survive it and i want to know if anyone else has this.

20200114_170944.thumb.jpg.9be1e26ca88b0a5f44d4d2781125a6a2.jpg

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On 14/01/2020 at 15:30, kookoo_gr said:

 

2) i usually polar align with my polar scope before drift aligning and i see that at the home position of the mount the reticle of the polar scope is upside down (6 is up 0 is down) from my experience form these polar scopes i need to have the 6 down and then polar allign, this is going to be an issue, since i will have to rotate the RA 180 degrees and the scope will be down in order to start the polar alignment and i want to avoid this. I would like to know if it is posiblle to rotate the reticle of the polar scope

 

One of the beauty’s of this reticle is that I don’t think the numbers matter as long as the 6 is vertical if it’s at the top. The way I see it is as a clock and it’s graduated so I just put Polaris in the position of the app I use. Even if you use the handset to pinpoint Polaris it’s still easy to replicate in the scope. 

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On 14/01/2020 at 17:30, kookoo_gr said:

1) when i have the clutches released the axes are a bit stiff when balancing, does anyone else have this?

Yes, they seem quite stiff.

On 14/01/2020 at 17:30, kookoo_gr said:

2) i usually polar align with my polar scope before drift aligning and i see that at the home position of the mount the reticle of the polar scope is upside down (6 is up 0 is down) from my experience form these polar scopes i need to have the 6 down and then polar allign, this is going to be an issue, since i will have to rotate the RA 180 degrees and the scope will be down in order to start the polar alignment and i want to avoid this. I would like to know if it is posiblle to rotate the reticle of the polar scope

I never used the polar scope, I found the polar alignment routine good enough even for longer focal length photography. 2 iterations and you should have an error less than 10".

On 14/01/2020 at 17:30, kookoo_gr said:

3) after slewing and the mount stops i have the dreadful sound that the old eq-6s and heq5s have, again this is only when the mount stops and not when slewing, does anyone have this sound? It's not bad and only for a second but i believe i can survive it and i want to know if anyone else has this.

Check your power source. Does the power led blink when the mount is slowing down? 11V is not really enough, regardless of the current, even if the specs are 11V-16V. I switched to a 15V power supply and everything is smooth now.

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So tonight i got a clear night and i went out with the mount for testing,

For polar alignment with the polar scope i did the following, using an app i saw that polaris should be at 7 o'clock so having 0 down i turned it into 6 and did my polar alignment, i checked and refined the results with polemaster so i am good on that front.

As for the voltage i use 13.5 for my equipment, i believe it's just a matter of getting used to a new mount and its sounds.

I did not manage to do any guiding since the collimation on my scope was waaaay off thus making off axis guiding problematic (even checking my polar alignment with phd was impossible) and i had problems with my focuser cable, i had to gather my things recollimate the scope and then repair the focuser cable (two pins were broken and needed resoldering, cold soldering)

 

Also is there a way to dim or turn off the polar scope light either from the hand controller or eqmod?

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On 11/06/2018 at 20:06, abdel said:

Hi everybody, I have my eq6r for almost 8 months used it for AP was wonderful but I'm trying to get it to work EQASCOM , EQMODDLX and I am not able to get a connection I would like some pointers on why this issue happens the error message is connection time out I don't use a serial to usb adapter as I have a serial port on my pc thank you for your help!  

It’s been a while, so you have probably figured this out -  but for anyone else wondering what’s going on...

The D type connector found on some EQ mounts is serial, but it’s not RS-232. The interface for both types is “serial” but the EQ mounts uses either 3.3V or 5V. The RS-232 standard is 12V.

Plugging two PCs together with RS-232 “works” because both are using 12V and see the correct voltages at the receiving end. Connecting the mount’s serial connector to the a PC is probably not going to work because the voltage thresholds won’t be reached.

If an interface doesn’t work, then lowering the serial bit rate (speed) can work. But if it’s in any way flaky then it’s best avoided. Using the wrong voltages won’t necessary “fry” the electronics because they can protect their inputs e.g. limit currents and RS-232 works. RS-232 can work in one direction when voltages are different because a higher voltage can be tolerated. In the other direction it may not work because the full 12V swing is expected and crossing the threshold from zero to one’s doesn’t occur.

RS-232 is not just one standard. Although the speeds are common the operating characteristics vary. When PCs were in their infancy and it was possible to make stuff on a breadboard, two types of chip were available, parallel and serial chips. These were TTL compatible chips and the serial chip could send/receive data but couldn’t generate the 12V required. For this, there were converter chips. Actually receiving was OK because the voltage swings can be detected (resister dividers). Maxim chips did this and were popular.

TTL chips were soon replaced by CMOS and the voltage became less important. Later when processor speeds increased, lower voltages were used. So now it’s very common for chips to work on 3.3V. In the mount the electronics could be 5V but more likely it will be 3.3V. The inputs to these chips are protected against higher voltages so damaging them is unlikely.

On most laptops there probably are USB ports and no RS -232 ports. There are cables available which convert USB to RS-232. The type you need is not converting to 12V so a “generic” one is the wrong choice. It’s like connecting a PC to your mount, which doesn’t work. A flaky link is something to be avoided. Cables for conversion from an Astronomy shop have advantages: they can support longer cables, be flexible and work at lower temperatures and at the USB end they use better chipsets. USB need a Windows driver and the better ones keep the same COM port e.g. setup becomes consistent and plugging into any serial port works.

I have theHEQ5 Mount, it doesn’t have a serial mount input. Instead it relies upon a port on the hand controller. MyHC is the latest type so only has a USB port. I could use a USB cable to the mount and skip the HC completely. I will be using the HC in a PC direct mode. Here it talks to a PC USB to USB and passes this through to the mount. In effect the HC is an expensive USB to serial (low voltage converter. Since it has no other job to do in this mode, it can be expected to work very reliably. SW don’t do themselves any favours because they don’t update the documentation. Most people assume that they still include a serial connector on the HC base but they don’t. To see the V5 HC search for ORION handcontroller. Technically any Mount has serial input because the ports include serial on some of the pins, but to use them requires a special cable.

Simon

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hello all this is my first post. I just got the new EQ6R Pro with the usb port on the mount head and another on the hand set. I have had it out and got a nice flame nebula capture without auto guiding. I have it connected to Eqmod and have control of the mount (moving parking and such) but when I try to open stellarium it doesn't recognize my mount. Also when I tried to use the usb on the mount head with Phd2 the mount stopped tracking the second I unparked the mount and I had to  restart the mount. I guess I have a few questions. Am I to connect to the mount via the usb printer type cable directly to the mount? I read something about the hand controller needing to be in "pc" mode so I am not sure if that affects all the issues. Also how can I fix the stellarium issue as without it I see no value in eqmod?  This mount is far superior to my AVX but way different to set up with my laptop. I do have all the appropriate drivers installed....I believe. Thanks for any help you can give me.

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On 05/02/2020 at 08:28, rayschilke said:

Hello all this is my first post. I just got the new EQ6R Pro with the usb port on the mount head and another on the hand set. I have had it out and got a nice flame nebula capture without auto guiding. I have it connected to Eqmod and have control of the mount (moving parking and such) but when I try to open stellarium it doesn't recognize my mount. Also when I tried to use the usb on the mount head with Phd2 the mount stopped tracking the second I unparked the mount and I had to  restart the mount. I guess I have a few questions. Am I to connect to the mount via the usb printer type cable directly to the mount? I read something about the hand controller needing to be in "pc" mode so I am not sure if that affects all the issues. Also how can I fix the stellarium issue as without it I see no value in eqmod?  This mount is far superior to my AVX but way different to set up with my laptop. I do have all the appropriate drivers installed....I believe. Thanks for any help you can give me.

I use stellariumscope to simplify things a bit ... plug the usb from hand controller to the laptop and put the mount in pc-direct mode.  When first selecting the mount I choose POTH  (hub) so that other apps can talk to the mount.  PHD2 connects no problem after that  and I use APT and it connects no prob.  stellariumscope runs on top of EQMOD so it's there too...

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Thank you Nebula. Yesterday I connected through the hand set and was able to connect to Eqmod, then stellariumscope, then stellarium. Everything slewed fine and seemed to be working perfect. I did connect to phd2 by using eqmod eq5/6 ascome drivers and also my ZWO guide camera too. I was in my hobby room due to clouds so I have yet to check tracking but I have high hopes. Connecting through the handset and not the mount head was the key to success I have had.  I am going out tonight and plan to do polar align from home position , calibrate the mount, return the mount to home, this will be done with the mount is parked in eqmod, then open stellariumscope, stellarium, unpark, find my target, then start phd2 to get my imaging up and going once I am on target. I hope that plan of order sounds about right. 

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1 hour ago, AKB said:

Yes and no.  Unless I am mistaken, this is a problem...

 

Aborting a slew I'm not sure about, but you can definitely sync the mount. As far as I'm aware you can abort a slew in eqmod or the synscan app anyway, although I agree having it included in Stellarium would be good.

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I'm definitely interested in hearing more about Stellarium and Sync.  I currently use an older version of stellarium which sends syncs nicely, via StelariumScope. I've been reluctant to change as some of this AP software seems to be quite 'sensitive'.  So if it ain't broke, I'm not keen to fix it.


However, I also use APT as my imaging software and it doesn't play nicely with StellariumScope. 

I wonder if now Stellarium supports ASCOM natively, it might work?  Maybe something for me to consider when the light nights begin later in the year 🙂

 

In the meantime:  Here's how I connect my gear up, as others have been talking about this.

PC: Windows 10

EQMOD, connected to mount via EQ Direct USB cable. The synscan handset is still in the original box, never used.... (PC Direct on my old EQ3 seemed unreliable)

PHD2 guiding, using ASCOM pulse guiding.

Stellarium to move and sync the scope (using APT for plate solving as necessary)  StellariumScope acting as the go-between for eqmod and Stellarium

 

For polar align, forget about polar scopes.  Use sharpcap.  The polar align routine can get you from a rough "plonk the mount on the floor, align north with iphone compass" to pinpoint accuracy in maybe two iterations.  I happen to use the same spot on my garden patio each night and I know exactly where to put the tripod legs to get within 1 degree of polar alignment.  It's a 5 minute job to get it accurate using sharpcap.   Sharpcap also has some very handy bhatinov mask focus aids...

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57 minutes ago, AKB said:

...with a keyboard command from within Stellarium??

If, how, please?

Tony

CTRL-SHIFT-1 all at the same time syncs for me using the 0.19.3 with direct ASCOM.  CTRL-3 was the stellarium scope equivalent.

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On 19/12/2019 at 09:17, Robny said:

Just an update to this, I DID do the firmware update for my motors and they certainly sound different, not had opportunity yet to try it out, but as the noise goes......it sounds promising.

Does updating firmware help/is needed when driving through ASCOM too?

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am a new member of the family now.  I had to send mine back today though.  SAD.. I had a bad error with guiding.  So another is on its way and then going on a road trip for a week under BORTLE one skies!!!  I do love the mount. I have just spent th last hour reading this thread. 

From what I gathered...

1. I need to update the firmware

2. I already used EQMOD successfully with it (without the HC and using 0.5 to guide)

3. This is not an UNcommon but not common issue. ( I pray it doesn't happen to me again)...  I may need to learn eqpec training. I am not permanent so i hope not)~

4.  WE LOVE OUR EQ6-r mounts.....  Did I miss anything??

 

Thank you for having me..... Dawn in Indiana US

Screen Shot 2020-02-29 at 11.12.25 PM.png

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I have the newest version of stellarium now synced perfect with my EQ6R Pro. I leave the handset at home, set up from the home position. Polar align in Sharpcap.  Turn on the scope after alignment, Start stellarium and it automatically turns on EQMOD. I slew to 2 stars, center each target, hit CTRL SHIFT 1 to center on each star and then I am good all night. EASY EASY EASY. I UNINSTALLED stellariumscope and all issues went away. BTW I connect directly from the mount head to my laptop with a regular printer cable (usb on one side and printer type hook up on the scope side. Paid 9 dollars for a really nice 10 foot one here   https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07M9J4CYH/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&th=1

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thought I'd add my guiding numbers to the knowledge base - had the mount for a couple of months now - conditions were calm last night and I saw the graph consistently between 0.5-0.6" RMS. I've been hapily guiding with 3 - 4 second exposures. 

 

EQ6Rguiding.PNG

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