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I asked a few weeks ago about charging two batteries from one solar panel. I’ve now got a solar controller which can do this, see below, but I’m confused by the instruction manual, especially how I should set the “charging priority”. I assumed the unit would charge battery 1 until full, then move on and charge battery 2 until full, then go back to 1. I’m not sure what this charging priority is - image of the relevant page from the manual below. I’d be grateful to hear what you think it means.
I was hesitant to write this earlier, but I wanted to try all possible ways to get my new SkyWatcher 250P GOTO allgined, but to no avail.
I have followed the instruction manuals of both the synscan and SW, and managed to get the message "alignment successful" multiple times on the handset or the app. The closest I got when I tried to dial a different star was a 20 to 25 degrees off on the azimth axis. Most times it's off by a margin on both axes.
I have tried aligning around 30 times on more than 5 diffrenet occasions, different locations as well. I end up ignoring the thing and switch to navigating manually as the eager friends want to observe instantly, but we ran out of objectes and the planets are not close anymore, so I figured it's time to get deeper DSO's and sort out the GOTO.
Here is what I do:
• I level the scope to the zero reading on top of the base
• I make sure the base is level with a spirit level I bought recently
• I point the scope northish, but latley I bought compass to pinpoint north
• I plug all equipments in and then switch on the power from a lead acid battery
• I enter the date ( US fromat, month before day 😕 )
• enter correct time zone obviously
• the coordinates in the format of E 000 00 , N 00 00
• As for elevation I use "my elevation" app, not sure if it's accurate. Does this entry have to be that accurate?
• I tried both brightest star and the 2 star align methods on the handset (which seems to be the same thing apart from the brightest method having an extra menu asking for which direction you are pointing at)
I even used the synscan app and the synscan pro, and tried the 3 star align method. The app uses location and enters all data automatically
•I use the top and right arrows as the last press before centring the star in the eyepiece as recommended by the manual
These are the steps I follow when I align , is there anythung I missed? Your kind help is much appreciated.
Update: issue solved, check the reply in the second page
I tested the tracer polymer battery over a six hour period and although the red light on the HEQ5 flashed most of the time, and more rapidly as time went on, the mount moved so that the time on setting circles changed by six hours, suggesting the mount will track OK. (the test was carried out during the day). I did not try to get the telescope to point in a different direction using the handset.
1) Should I be bothered by the flashing lights on the HEQ5 mount?
2) Is tracer misleading people by saying their batteries are 12 volts? (they say that their discharge curves are flat)
I found that the battery's voltage falls. Below is from the Tracer datasheet.
Built-in Fuel Gauge - 5 colour LED fuel gauge mounted externally to show charge level. LED Status:
3 green & 2 red: Battery fully charged 11.7V
2 green & 2 red: Over 50% capacity 11.4V
1 green & 2 red: Over 20% capacity 11.1V
2 red: Less than 20% capacity 10.7V 1 red:
Less than 10% capacity 10.3V No lights: Battery empty 8.25V
So my birthday just past so money to splash on astro stuff , i will have my 1000D modded by juan at cheapastrophotography and also have ordered an autofocuser from deepsky dad https://deepskydad.com/autofocuser i know they can be done DIY but this is a neat package and costs about the same as a SW autofocuser and a hitechastro focusmaster and i`m no electronic wizard and pavel seems to have a good product and works with ascom and confirmed it works with APT i will update in a few weeks time when hopefully i will have received and tried out .
Looks like my Lipo project so far may be working good, ran a trial last night with a 3200Mah 3 cell Lipo from my RC airplane, the battery is an 11.1V nominal charge (uncharged) but charges up to 12.6V (4.2V per cell fully charged). All Lipo batteries display nominal charge capacity, which can be misleading because when charged, they jump up in voltage past displayed voltage.
I wanted to see how long that went for before using one of my larger 5000Mah batts, didn’t take much more than $5 for a 2.5mm connector with 6ft cable included and a Deans connector on other end for the battery. I have a small voltage meter we RC guys use to monitor battery levels per cell and combined voltage, meter just keeps displaying levels constantly then emits a buzz when it drops to pre programmed level. The loud buzz I muffled to a pitiful hum by dropping some hot glue over the little speaker holes, last thing I need is an 80 decibel buzz at 2am in my yard.
I set buzz for 3.5V per cell which is lowest you want to drain a Lipo per cell, after slewing around manually more times than I can remember I still had enough juice to slew around for another hour if i wanted, I was mimicking a nights slewing around and I think after I slewed around on both axis simultaneously on and off for 40 min I pretty much covered a nights worth.
the test will be in the field, if this battery doesn’t cut it I’m sure the 5000Mah will do the trick. I was watching for any shenanigans from the scope as the level dropped but nothing, no glitches or twitching of the controller display, all remained solid.
The next morning i turned on the scope (without recharging battery) and again spent the better part of an hour until i was just bored slewing the scope around, i was afraid to burn out a motor with constant back and forth slewing with a short pause of course.
i am now convinced that this 3200mah battery not much bigger than the average candy bar will last a whole night out and more! fantastic to know that when i drag the scope out for short periods locally (won't need heat strip those times) that this battery will be fine.
i was dreading having to take my 50Lb deep cycle marine battery every time id like to go for a short local 2hr outreach session, on those long drive dark sky all night sessions yes i will need heat and my marine battery but those a few compared to
short local sessions. I can now fit my power supply into my pocket and that is just GOLD!!