Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

mikey2000

EQ6-R owners club

Recommended Posts

I'm considering the purchase of a SW MN190 Mak/Newt as my second imaging scope.  It is much heavier than my ED80, at close to 30 lbs with camera.  I'm wondering if I would be able to balance that heavy a load on the EQ6-R using only the two 11 lb counterweights that came with the mount, or if I would need to add a third?  Does anyone in the owners club have experience with a 30+ lb payload on their EQ6-R?  Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FLO says it’s rated at 20kg for astrophotography.   That’s 44lb.  It comes with 2x 5kg counterweights and a counterweight extension bar.   I’ve not done the measurements on how far the bar extends but it looks rather long with the extension on.

 

my rig is about 7kg and I use the extension bar (mainly so I don’t lose it!). One 5kg weight balances the rig when placed halfway along the bar.   So if my maths is correct, two weights would balance 14kg.  Moving the weights to the very end would then balance 28kg

 

30lb is about 14 kg so I’m sure you will be fine with two weights.

 

(that’s pretty rough and possibly incorrect maths but I think it gets us in the approx right area) ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks mikey, I figured with the extension bar two weights would be enough.  The 'conventional wisdom' for photographic payload on a mount is 1/2 the stated max payload value, which would be 10kg.   I have seen the EQ6-R rated as 20kg for astro at several sites, but would like to hear from an owner with actual experience above 15kg.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

[name?],

Not the NEQ-R version, but the older NEQ6pro...

I have around 17-18Kg telescope loading on mine - C11, spectrograph, five camera etc. with five (!!!?) counterweights.

Been using the configuration for almost eight years - no issues no drama.

 

Mainsail Obs 001s.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From an engineering perspective the payloads of mounts are questionable without actually knowing what the limiting factors are.

It's very difficult to believe that the mounts are actually modelled or tested to define a limit in a strictly scientific manner. I would imagine they are just tested by piling on dead weight until they cease to operate properly, then benchmark load that is rather lower is assumed and a lower one again taken for imaging. The 50% rule for imaging can be no more than a rule of thumb, a very long visual scope puts more demands on a mount's accuracy and mechanical robustness than a short focal length imaging scope of similar weight.

Also, the manufactuer's specifications will probably be grounded in assuming the average user will not be setting up with great skill. Their concern will be that it happily handles the scopes they sell if for even if the user hasn't balanced them properly, for example. Also they need to show that each mount can handle more then the next smallest - without making the smallest ones seem totally inadequate.

The bearings used are capable of supporting heavier weights by a factor of at least ten.

A properly balance load is unlikely to be difficult to drive, but balancing in all tree dimensions is impractical; we have to accept some out of balance (indeed some is useful as it counteracts backlash) but this needs to be kept low enough not to overload the drive. This means the net out of balance of a large scope needs to be kept as low as with a small scope.

The heavier load will have greater inertia/momentum and this may make it slower to respond to guiding and more liable to overshoot.

A heavier load will probably have a lower resonant frequency and this may make it steadier.

With an overweight but balanced load, I feel greatest risk of damage would be stripping gears by trying to accelerate or decelerate an overweight load too fast.

My intuitive feeling is that if fast slewing of long, heavy scopes is avoided and care taken with balancing the mount is unlikely to be damaged. In terms of performance, overweight may degrade the absolute performance, but I am sure this would be a gentle falling away rather than a sudden 'cliff edge' (as would happen if the mount was unbalanced and stalled a motor).

 

My experience is that an EQ3 will quite happily handle a 150PL (quite a big scope, 1200mm newtonian) for astrophotography, and that to do this successfully what was needed was an EQ5-style tripod. In other words, the wobbly standard tripod was the limiting factor, not the mount.

 

That said, I now use an HEQ5, my main conclusion is that teh bigger mount makes setting things up a bit easier, but not as much as I expected.

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, Merlin66 said:

[name?],

Not the NEQ-R version, but the older NEQ6pro...

I have around 17-18Kg telescope loading on mine - C11, spectrograph, five camera etc. with five (!!!?) counterweights.

Been using the configuration for almost eight years - no issues no drama.

 

Mainsail Obs 001s.jpg

Wow that's an impressive amount of weight for an EQ6.  An MN190 should be easy compared to that rig.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Stub Mandrel said:

From an engineering perspective the payloads of mounts are questionable without actually knowing what the limiting factors are.

It's very difficult to believe that the mounts are actually modelled or tested to define a limit in a strictly scientific manner. I would imagine they are just tested by piling on dead weight until they cease to operate properly, then benchmark load that is rather lower is assumed and a lower one again taken for imaging. The 50% rule for imaging can be no more than a rule of thumb, a very long visual scope puts more demands on a mount's accuracy and mechanical robustness than a short focal length imaging scope of similar weight.

Also, the manufactuer's specifications will probably be grounded in assuming the average user will not be setting up with great skill. Their concern will be that it happily handles the scopes they sell if for even if the user hasn't balanced them properly, for example. Also they need to show that each mount can handle more then the next smallest - without making the smallest ones seem totally inadequate.

The bearings used are capable of supporting heavier weights by a factor of at least ten.

A properly balance load is unlikely to be difficult to drive, but balancing in all tree dimensions is impractical; we have to accept some out of balance (indeed some is useful as it counteracts backlash) but this needs to be kept low enough not to overload the drive. This means the net out of balance of a large scope needs to be kept as low as with a small scope.

The heavier load will have greater inertia/momentum and this may make it slower to respond to guiding and more liable to overshoot.

A heavier load will probably have a lower resonant frequency and this may make it steadier.

With an overweight but balanced load, I feel greatest risk of damage would be stripping gears by trying to accelerate or decelerate an overweight load too fast.

My intuitive feeling is that if fast slewing of long, heavy scopes is avoided and care taken with balancing the mount is unlikely to be damaged. In terms of performance, overweight may degrade the absolute performance, but I am sure this would be a gentle falling away rather than a sudden 'cliff edge' (as would happen if the mount was unbalanced and stalled a motor).

 

My experience is that an EQ3 will quite happily handle a 150PL (quite a big scope, 1200mm newtonian) for astrophotography, and that to do this successfully what was needed was an EQ5-style tripod. In other words, the wobbly standard tripod was the limiting factor, not the mount.

 

That said, I now use an HEQ5, my main conclusion is that teh bigger mount makes setting things up a bit easier, but not as much as I expected.

 

 

 

 

Neil, 

Luckily I won't be approaching the stated payload limit of the EQ6-R as I expect an MN190 + my imaging gear would top out at 16kg, short of the rated 20kg.  My primary concern is maintaining the excellent guiding results I'm currently achieving with a much heavier scope.  The moment of inertia will certainly be higher on the MN190 as the heavy bits (lens, focuser, camera and mirror) are concentrated at the far ends of the scope.  As you point out this could be both beneficial in resisting high frequency movements, but slower to respond to guide inputs.  I guess I won't know for sure until I try it myself.  Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just bought a the Synscan Wifi Adaptor for mine so have to try that out when the weathers is better. One less cable to trip over. Hoping to control it from my Android phone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/11/2018 at 19:15, f300v10 said:

I'm considering the purchase of a SW MN190 Mak/Newt as my second imaging scope.  It is much heavier than my ED80, at close to 30 lbs with camera.  I'm wondering if I would be able to balance that heavy a load on the EQ6-R using only the two 11 lb counterweights that came with the mount, or if I would need to add a third?  Does anyone in the owners club have experience with a 30+ lb payload on their EQ6-R?  Thanks

Hi, I have an EQ6-R with a Celestron C11 (30 lbs with dove tail and minimal accessories.)  I need the extend bar and 2 * 5kgs counterweights at the very end of the bar which is not a good idea. To put it simple, well, get a third weight. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/11/2018 at 23:00, f300v10 said:

Thanks mikey, I figured with the extension bar two weights would be enough.  The 'conventional wisdom' for photographic payload on a mount is 1/2 the stated max payload value, which would be 10kg.   I have seen the EQ6-R rated as 20kg for astro at several sites, but would like to hear from an owner with actual experience above 15kg.

EQ6-R is rated 20Kgs for viewing and 17Kgs for astro-photo by SW. I use it with a 16Kgs payload (more or less) for photography and it's all fine. On the other hand, be sure to have a good quality power source, that's an important condition for things to run smoothly :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Marc2B said:

EQ6-R is rated 20Kgs for viewing and 17Kgs for astro-photo by SW. I use it with a 16Kgs payload (more or less) for photography and it's all fine. On the other hand, be sure to have a good quality power source, that's an important condition for things to run smoothly :)

Thanks for the info Marc2B, I should be at least a couple Kg under 17.  As for the power source I found that out the hard way when I first got the mount as documented earlier in this thread.  No issues since I upgraded to a higher capacity battery.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, f300v10 said:

Thanks for the info Marc2B, I should be at least a couple Kg under 17.  As for the power source I found that out the hard way when I first got the mount as documented earlier in this thread.  No issues since I upgraded to a higher capacity battery.

As for me, I use a 240/12V AC/DC 8 Amp ($25) at home and a small 1200W inverter gas generator when going to my favourite site. This generator provides a very good quality current and is really a bargain ( $220 ) compared to a simple battery. I use it for our club to power up 3 mounts ( one Losmandy and 2 EQ6/EQ6-R ) plus 3 laptops and all the accessories, wifi, cameras, focusers, several Raspberry Pi plus the red lights... And it only weighs 12Kgs. Roughly 8 hours autonomy with 1.5 gal. Really an option to consider.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Took the new MN190 out for a spin near the house to see how it worked with the EQ6-R.  The mount handled it with apparent ease.  It was a bit gusty at times and the wind did have more impact than with the refractor due to the shear size of the MN190.  Guiding was around 1 arcsec RMS or below when the wind was down.  I'm not a big fan of globular clusters but M15 was near the meridian so that's what I used as a target.  I think the collimation was just a little off but not to bad.

 

 

M15_PS_1-crop.jpg

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 06/11/2018 at 19:15, f300v10 said:

I'm considering the purchase of a SW MN190 Mak/Newt as my second imaging scope.  It is much heavier than my ED80, at close to 30 lbs with camera.  I'm wondering if I would be able to balance that heavy a load on the EQ6-R using only the two 11 lb counterweights that came with the mount, or if I would need to add a third?  Does anyone in the owners club have experience with a 30+ lb payload on their EQ6-R?  Thanks

Hi,

Here in belgium we've had "Night of the Darkness", a national event to raise awareness about light pollution, for the occasion my astroclub was set up at a school and i brought my SCT along and added my 80ED to it to let the visitors see both the high power narrow field of the SCT as well as the rich field of the refractor, so the set up is about 20kg, 3 weights at the end of the extension bar, had no problems at all. 

In the foto to the right, you see my college's EQ6R, he fitted the Geoptik counterweight bar to his mount, works fine, but he can't slide it in anymore for transport.

44606535_447275125799920_185441762829926400_o.thumb.jpg.75da1f03e98db9cc48b0f4149bc394e3.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey guys,

Well I just joined the EQ6R-Pro club. At the bottom is what I had been using .. an original Bill Schaefer built GEM with 9" Buyers gear that I restored/rebuilt  20 years ago when I was building Schaefer mounts at Astro-Track Engineering in California. The mount just got to be too heavy to move around .. so I gave up astronomy and its turned into a living room decoration ever since. So now that I'm retired I've gotten the astrophotography bug again and happened across the Sky-Watcher brand. I took delivery of the mount, an ED100 Pro refractor, and a Quattro 8 a week ago, a MUCH lighter and easier to move rig. It has all yet to see first light as the weather of course turned cloudy and rainy the day it came lol. So for field use I'm set up with battery power, but for practicing here at home I need an AC adapter for the mount. I emailed Sky-Watcher USA and one of their reps mentioned this one from Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Schumacher-PC-6-120AC-Power-Converter/dp/B0012BL8LG/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1543806572&sr=8-3&keywords=120v+to+12v+converter    

I'm not real strong in electronics being a former machinist, could you guys check this adapter and see what you think? Thanks!

Chris

45190829344_4129d11bd1_z_d.jpg

31919935768_10127cc5ec_z_d.jpg

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi all. I've just received past Saturday a new EQ6-R Pro mount. I've also purchased a Celestron Powertank Lithium Pro which was recommended to use with this mount. Unfortunately, while slewing to a star for alignment it will "stall/stop" halfway. Could it be suffering a power related issue. The led stays constant without blinking. I was wondering what is the right power supply to use with the mount? And is there any reliable battery pack for the mount?

Edited by javaruba

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, javaruba said:

Hi all. I've just received past Saturday a new EQ6-R Pro mount. I've also purchased a Celestron Powertank Lithium Pro which was recommended to use with this mount. Unfortunately, while slewing to a star for alignment it will "stall/stop" halfway. Could it be suffering a power related issue. The led stays constant without blinking. I was wondering what is the right power supply to use with the mount? And is there are any reliable battery pack out the for the mount?

Does it make a strange noise? Something resembling grinding something between the gears.

Does it stop suddenly or slowly decreasing speed? Make sure everything is properly configured. Position (correct hemisphere, west or east of Greenwich), date entered in MM/DD/YYYY format, daylight saving set to No. Kind of recently I forgot to set the daylight to No on one mount.

I wouldn't expect any power issues if the led stays constant without blinking.

If I recall correctly, the mount needs ~5A at 12V when slewing both axis at full speed. My smaller Celestron LiFePo4 Powertank couldn't deliver enough and it cut the power at alignment. I've yet to test the newer larger one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, moise212 said:

Does it make a strange noise? Something resembling grinding something between the gears.

Does it stop suddenly or slowly decreasing speed? Make sure everything is properly configured. Position (correct hemisphere, west or east of Greenwich), date entered in MM/DD/YYYY format, daylight saving set to No. Kind of recently I forgot to set the daylight to No on one mount.

I wouldn't expect any power issues if the led stays constant without blinking.

If I recall correctly, the mount needs ~5A at 12V when slewing both axis at full speed. My smaller Celestron LiFePo4 Powertank couldn't deliver enough and it cut the power at alignment. I've yet to test the newer larger one.

Hi, thanks for the prompt reply. Every parameter seems to be Ok from what I could see and well balanced. I've recorded a video and made a few pictures of the setup, follow the link below:

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=1FjPwdaA_u_1x9oXYQFbNi7QYMf6kDYzb

Also, attached is a picture of the voltage read on the hand controller with the Celestron Powertank Lithium Pro connected.

 

Edited by javaruba

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, javaruba said:

Hi, thanks for the prompt reply. Every parameter seems to be Ok from what I could see and well balanced. I've recorded a video and made a few pictures of the setup, follow the link below:

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=1FjPwdaA_u_1x9oXYQFbNi7QYMf6kDYzb

Also, attached is a picture of the voltage read on the hand controller with the Celestron Powertank Lithium Pro connected.

 

I cannot see very well on the phone, but I remember the same kind of behaviour when I used a power source not powerful enough.

I'm very unhappy to find out that the new, bigger celestron lifepo4 power tank is not enough for the mount as this was exactly the reason why I bought one in the first place, to power the eq6r. I will check the following days too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, javaruba said:

Hi all. I've just received past Saturday a new EQ6-R Pro mount. I've also purchased a Celestron Powertank Lithium Pro which was recommended to use with this mount. Unfortunately, while slewing to a star for alignment it will "stall/stop" halfway. Could it be suffering a power related issue. The led stays constant without blinking. I was wondering what is the right power supply to use with the mount? And is there any reliable battery pack for the mount?

javaruba, I had the exact same problem as you describe when I first used my EQ6-R and I to was powering it from a large Lithium Ion battery.  Mine stalled exactly as you describe, as documented on page 4 of this thread.  I replaced the lithium battery with a sealed lead acid model and have had zero issues with the mount ever since. I used the sysnscan hand controller voltage meter function  to monitor the voltage while slewing the mount.  With the lithium ion battery the voltage would start at 12, but when slewing would drop, and once it got to 11.0 volts or less, the mount would stall.  The LED light on the mount would often stay on solid and not indicate an issue by flashing.  The sealed lead acid battery has a higher voltage at over 13 volts and is a better match to the requirements of the EQ6-R. 

Edited by f300v10
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

javaruba, I just looked at the photo you uploaded of the voltage reading with the power tank attached, and as you know its already below 12 volts. It will only drop once higher load is placed on the battery.  Thats the issue here, the EQ6-R really needs a higher voltage than a lithium Ion 12volt can supply.  If you pull the voltage meter back up on the hand control and slew the mount with the arrow keys at max rate, you will see the voltage drop.  Once it hits 11.0 or less the mount will stall.  The higher starting voltage of a lead acid battery avoids this problem.  I'm using an 18 amp hour sealed lead acid and have powered the mount for over 6 hours in below freezing temps without issue.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just checked this evening to power the mount with the Celestron lithium power tank pro and everything went just fine.

The reported voltage on the handset was 12.9V when tracking at sidereal rate, 12.3V at full slewing speed on both axis and just below 12V when stopping the fast slew.

Maybe there's a weak contact in your setup?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, all thanks for the information. I've managed to test the mount with a bench power supply capable of going from 4 to 15 Vdc and 10 Amps max. At around 13.8 Vdc and performing a star alignment, it will stall and make the whining noise. Going up to max volts ~15 Vdc it seems to work somewhat better and reach the alignment star, but by pressing the Ra and Dec simultaneously it would stall until I stop pressing.

The red Led is constantly on prior, during and post the stall. Strange enough I noticed that during stall and right after slewing it will vibrate a little. Attached is a picture of the bench Power supply I've used. 

I've also removed all equipment and counterweight and tested. Pressing Ra and Dec button together it will also stall sometimes while having the power supply at 15Vdc and reading 14.8 Vdc on the keypad. Here is a video of that test:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1WnGhVauMv44LTgHAn34ADKT_oZb6BRQV/view?usp=drivesdk

As a reference, I've also tested with a rather larger fully charged Celestron Power Tank 17 with no success. Not sure if I put a 16 Vdc power supply it would do any difference.

20181221_182204.thumb.jpg.6e33926ecb645e197273dddc2e85a227.jpg

20181221_191204.thumb.jpg.75c4f4dd3448d77ed195a635adc5c282.jpg

 

Edited by javaruba
Info added
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmmmm

Not the same mount, but I use the NEQ6Pro..

For the past ten years I've successfully powered it from a couple of Gel Cell batteries and a car voltage converter 12v to 15v at 120watt. No issue no drama it just works 100%

I would NOT recommend increasing the voltage beyond the Skywatchers recommended 15v.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.