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.

sgl_imaging_challenge_banner_lunar_landings.thumb.jpg.b50378d0845690d8a03305a49923eb40.jpg

Recommended Posts

I am just in the process of buying my first telescope. There’s so much information it’s making it very difficult what to choose! I have decided to buy a GoTo telescope but I can’t find any information which answers my query. Basically, can you use a GoTo telescope without using the computer part and use it as you would manual one? Any advice would be gratefully received!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes. GoTo is not required to operate a mechanically driven telescope. You can operate it in a manual mode simply by disengaging the clutch locks and moving it to whatever area you want to view.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, as Buzzard75 says, that is the beauty of a Go-To scope, you can use it manually to look at brighter objects, and use the onboard computer to find those faint and invisible targets for you.

I use mine in both modes during most of my viewing sessions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got the AZGTI with a 127 mak . Yes it can be moved manually but trying to track a target even at medium magnification is almost impossible without power to the mount.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Not all goto mounts can be moved manually as many actually require power to then instruct the mount to move.

Edited by happy-kat
A t missing
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Buzzard75 said:

Yes. GoTo is not required to operate a mechanically driven telescope. You can operate it in a manual mode simply by disengaging the clutch locks and moving it to whatever area you want to view.

This is not universally true. You need to read the small print.  Some designs do not include clutches. As a guide, German equatorial mounts are likely to include a clutch.  "Freedom Find" mounts can be declutched and moved without losing the GoTo setting.   Other mounts, including the Celestron SLT and SE mounts cannot be moved at all except under power and there is little point in trying to use them without the GoTo alignment.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd agree, the synscan upgrade fitted to my EQ5 doesn't have clutches, so while you can release the axles and swing the scope around to be generally pointing where you want, fine motion adjust would have to be via the hand controller to drive the motors. Then you've lost alignment and the scope park/home position, GoTo wouldn't be useful again until you redo the star alignment. No idea if it'll R/A track if you use it that way, not tried it myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, Cosmic Geoff said:

This is not universally true. You need to read the small print.  Some designs do not include clutches. As a guide, German equatorial mounts are likely to include a clutch.  "Freedom Find" mounts can be declutched and moved without losing the GoTo setting.   Other mounts, including the Celestron SLT and SE mounts cannot be moved at all except under power and there is little point in trying to use them without the GoTo alignment.

Point. I don't have experience with SLT or SE mounts. Wasn't aware they couldn't be moved manually and required power. I would then wonder if that's true of the majority of these types of mounts that just have the one connection on the side of the scope rather than using a dual fork such as the Meade ETX's. I am particularly familiar with EQ's, dobs and fork style mounts and have never seen one of those that couldn't be declutched and moved.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is worth pointing out to novices that even if the GoTo mount incorporates clutches, that does not mean that the mount is going to be very usable as an unpowered mount.  Generally no mechanical slow-motion is provided. The fork mount of the CPC800 for instance incorporates horizontal and vertical clutches, but the horizontal clutch has little practical use and the vertical clutch is useful for placing the OTA vertically for stowage at the end of a session. The OTA is not balanced. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Do your research on any mount before you buy. Try to get hands on experience or comments from someone who uses the mount.

Although things have improved, goto used to be 'go somewhere in the general direction of' unless you spent big money.

The sales literature often gives the impression of 1/ plant on ground 2/point and go 3/ enjoy the view. All done in seconds.

The reality can be:

1/  Plant on ground. Feet sink. Struggle to level. Try to point north.

2/  Power on. Set real time clock. Confuse US/UK date format. May need to enter latitude/long.

3/ Start mount align procedure using up to 3 stars. Some of which are not visible due to trees, walls, etc. Try different stars.

4/  Select an object to view. Scope slews. Nudge to centre and hopefully view.

If you spend more you can get a mount with GPS added. This enters time/date/location for you.
Or you buy a mount/handset that has a battery backed clock included.
If you have a permanent pier, levelling is done once when you build.

Please don't be put off goto. It can be very good. Just don't always believe the sales literature.

Hope this helps, David.

Edited by Carbon Brush
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have a look on you tube at the Astronomy and Nature demo of the Skywatcher Az GTI Mount as that type can be moved manually without losing position.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Joined the forum then was away for some weeks. 2nd post now I think, taken me long enough:

Really seems a little pointless getting a goto and then using it manually. They were not designed for such usage. They can or some can be used manually, however it seems like making life a little difficult for oneself. Even in Manual the interpretation of Manual is you use the motors and bits to slew to a target. Scanning around the sky with one, as people will do with binoculars for example, is not really a feasible idea or action. And if you decide that you want to view say Jupiter, then M51, Globular in Hercules, just make life easy and use the goto.

Where about are you, locating a club and collecting information and just seeing the equipment in action is usually a worthwhile idea.

Was there also any particular goto that you were thinking of?

I use a Skywatcher Az GTi and a 72mm ED on it. With Skysafari and with the Wifi it functions as a nice easy to use set of equipment. An aspect of observing often forgotten. The 2 saying are "Aperture is king" and also "Your best scope is the one you use the most".

The AZ GTi and 72ED fall into the last catagory for myself. Little option really as they are my only ones.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, PEMS said:

Really seems a little pointless getting a goto and then using it manually. They were not designed for such usage. They can or some can be used manually, however it seems like making life a little difficult for oneself. Even in Manual the interpretation of Manual is you use the motors and bits to slew to a target. Scanning around the sky with one, as people will do with binoculars for example, is not really a feasible idea or action. And if you decide that you want to view say Jupiter, then M51, Globular in Hercules, just make life easy and use the goto.

Benefit of having a GoTo that you can move manually is that if you don't have power or you run out of power, you can still do some observing and you're not reliant on GoTo. Having one that you can't move manually means you're basically done for the night if you're out of power.

Edited by Buzzard75

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As mentioned in previous posts, you are looking for freedom find feature in a GoTo telescope. I have a 10 inch Dob GoTo, and it has the freedom find, you can manually move it and still it would track and slew to objects.

 

This page explains the freedom find feature:

http://skywatcheraustralia.com.au/knowledge-base/

 

Note that GoTo alignment is not straightforward and will require some time for reading the manuals to understand how to align it and make it work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, PlanetGazer said:

Note that GoTo alignment is not straightforward and will require some time for reading the manuals to understand how to align it and make it work.

GoTo alignment can be very simple once you have got used to how it works.  For instance, with a GPS-equipped mount:

Turn it on.

Wait a bit.

Aim telescope at named alignment star 1.

Align with star. (coarse and fine adjustment)

Let mount traverse to vicinity of alignment star 2

Align with star 2.

Job done!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Content

    • By Ceebee58
      Newbie , bought a skywatcher Capricorn ( around £100) but still unopened as I have some unexpected money and wonder what to do .
      options I see are ; 
      Use the Capricorn and get to know the sky and how to align the eq mount. Move on if I get the bug , maybe get a couple of better eyepieces.
      Return for refund and choose one of;
      Use my approx £350 budget to get a 90+ aperture scope .
      Blow the budget on an entry level GOTO scope , don’t bother learning stuff but just observe.
      What would you do ? To be honest I think the learning thing is part of the fun but GOTO scopes seem to be the ‘in’ thong
       
    • By Corne de Klerk
      Hi Everyone. Hoping you can guide me in the right direction or give some advice. 
      I was given a Celestron Astromaster 70AZ telescope as a gift and have so far managed to locate and view Jupiter with an Android app. 

      I subsequently came across a youtube clip were the guy demonstrated on how to add a DSLR / mobile phone adapter to his telescope as a way to converting his budget telescope to a push / go-to by clipping his mobile phone on top of his telescope and using the star finder app, be able to locate his target and then using his finder scope.  Please note that I am not trying to Astrophotography (yet).
      However, I am unable to find any mounting clips / mobile phone adapters I can buy to add onto my telescope. Any suggestions or ideas how I can make this work? 

      Below is what I mean on how I want to attach my mobile phone on top of my telescope.
      Your help will be appreciated!

      AC
      South Africa


    • By gutaker
      Hi,
      do you think it's a good idea to swap my EQ3-2 GoTo Alu for iEXOS-100? Will there be some kind of improvement?
      Thanks!
    • By Vroobel
      Hi, 
      As my GoTo is successfully finished (some cosmetic issues remain) I shoud focus my attention on planets' positions. I have proper source of information: fantastic book "Astronomical Algorithms" by Jean Meeus, thus I will sort the planets soon. But planets are not a challenge for me at this moment, they are just something obvious to do in my list. 
      I have another idea and ambitious plan for next project within the year: locating and tracking the ISS to be able to make a video of its fly, not only transition. 
      Similarly to other objects, I need some equations. I'm pretty sure they are available somewhere, because plenty websites or apps offer showing current position of the ISS. 
      I will use this topic for sharing a progress ot the project. 
    • By FrankRyanJr
      Hi all.
      I'm buying a revelation 16-inch f/4.5 m-crf truss dobsonian and wanted to know can you/ has anyone fitted a go to drive on this scope? ArgoNavis or ServoCat or the like? Thanks!
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

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