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I have been looking into making a barn door tracker as I do not have funds buy one right now but looking more into this it seems ever so hard, even down the rod you need to bend to a certain degree, just seems very hard for me, any advice or tips would be great, not sure if someone here would make the brass curved rods as you can not buy them any where that I can see

 

All the best

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19 minutes ago, tingting44 said:

... looking more into this it seems ever so hard, even down the rod you need to bend to a certain degree, just seems very hard for me, any advice or tips would be great...

You don't need a curved rod if you use a double arm device. Even a tangent drive single arm device with a straight rod will track for sufficient time to give you decent images as long as you don't push the focal length up too much; an isosceles drive single arm mount is slightly trickier to make, but will give you longer tracking than will a tangent drive.

image.png.da695e49679e9d94c0c5566fce4b96ce.png

HTH

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thank you mate, i think i might just go for the built one i linked above as its a great price and i love the high detail of finish, also im terrible at making things lol

 

anyone here had experience with the NYX?

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3 hours ago, tingting44 said:

Just see this! Anyone here tried this? Seems perfect

 

https://nyxtech.us/

And if you use this link, you'll get $5 off via Cloudy Nights where the owner posts development updates.

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Thanks Louis, nice one

 

Edit, thats the same price?

Edited by tingting44

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2 hours ago, tingting44 said:

Thanks Louis, nice one

 

Edit, thats the same price?

Click through to the checkout page.  There's a $5 discount applied there thanks to the discount code "CLOUDYNIGHTS".

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The barn door I made (link in signature) uses a straight rod and using a 40mm lens lens can consistently get 3 minute exposures and it is manually turned. It was made using old kitchen door cut up. The most expensive items was the camera ball head about £11.00.

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On 20/01/2020 at 16:10, tingting44 said:

Thanks Louis, nice one

 

Edit, thats the same price?

That item shipped to the UK is too expensive and will not fall into low value consignment relief so will pay extra tax on it, have a read up first to make sure you know what extra tax you may be liable to pay.

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3 hours ago, happy-kat said:

That item shipped to the UK is too expensive and will not fall into low value consignment relief so will pay extra tax on it, have a read up first to make sure you know what extra tax you may be liable to pay.

Off-topic, so I apologize, but how do taxes on packages get collected in the UK?  In the US, if you ship via a private shipper such as UPS or DHL, they do the collection and guess which tariff schedule to apply and charge a brokerage fee.  It can soar to 25% plus a $50 brokerage fee.  However, if you ship via the post office, the US post office generally makes no effort to collect anything on receipt after clearing customs.  I don't know if it is a lack of interest or they are simply overwhelmed.  Perhaps if they charged a $50 brokerage fee, they might be able to hire more help to collect taxes.  I have bought lots of stuff from Europe, Australia, and China and never once payed any taxes on any of it.

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If shipped by a courier they will put it through customs, deliver the item and then send you a bill for the taxes, duties and handling fees which usually works oit to about 25% in total.

If coming by mail most packages except for low value declared items go through customs and they will send you a bill for the taxes, duties and handling which has to be paid before  they will deliver it. Again about 25% total. Some shippers, particularily Chinese, will mark packages as low value to escape customs or under declare the value..Of course the potential problem with under declaring the value is if the item is lost or damaged that’s the amount insurance will pay out.

They have tightened things up lately though as in the past many items sent by mail wouldn’t get processed by customs and would escape fees

Edited by johninderby
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I think you ought to give building one a try. It really isn’t hard to bend a threaded rod fairly accurately with minimal tooling. A junk ink jet printer can supply a little stepper motor and often a set of reduction gears can also be found. Sometimes a high count optical encoder can be found, which is a big deal. A $2 Attiny85 8 bit 8 pin DIP, which works like a small Arduino, can supply precise pulses for a stepper motor driver board, like the Big Easy, and sip power. That driver board, among others, can microstep the motor to both smooth out the step pulses and provide high RPM/steps per minute accuracy With a very short sketch/program (<20 lines of code) and simple parts a good bran door can be built for $20, with scrounging. A high quality hinge is the most important part, IMO.

If one finds, or makes, a disc of the same diameter as that of the curve in the rod one can keep at it until the rod lies perfectly all along the curve of the disc. A 14” pipe would be nearly perfect. Maybe wrap masking tape around it 1/4” thick to bring the center of the rod out to the 14 7/16” away from the hinge, or cut a plywood circle with a router. Brass rod is easier to work than mild steel, but not as durable. Remember, you aren’t building a Losmandy here, and perfection isn’t possible.

Mine works great if I drift align it, and didn’t even bother with an alignment scope/tube. I just set it to Polaris along the hinge to start, and then pick out a couple stars to use as drift checks. When I buckle down and get that right I can get 10 minute wide field shots that are pretty darned crisp.

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yours does sound great, ive all ready ordered the NYX tracker tho, lol, im just in love with it i really am, got a very nice manfrotto tripod just need to get a nice sigma 10-20 now and i should be set to start adding some widefield to my collection

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Oh, I have an iOptron SkyTracker Pro, which I absolutely love. I just built the barn door(s) to learn something and see if I could. I didn’t have a clue about drift alignment before building one, so there’s a big lesson right there. I also cut my Arduino “teeth” on understanding how to generate accurate step pulses of the right speed and duration, which helped a great deal when I built my joystick controlled Alt/Az mount. I’m now attempting to learn wireless communication using two Arduinos and those super cheap NRF24L01 wifi modules so I can tilt/spin that little Alt/Az mount without touching it. If I can get that working another add on will be a wirelss focus control. So, what began as a simple barn door tracker has branched off in several directions. Stuff like this keeps my mind, and hands, useful.

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I built a double arm tracker, only used it a few times. I need to play with it more. Have done a few 2 min expos, even tried a 10 min a few days back but the speed was a bit off, or my polar alignment.

Plenty of info on the internet. 

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sounds good guys! wow you are keeping busy theropod lol :)

ive had one chance to test my barn door out, i have a joystick manfrotto head, 1st thing ill be doing is getting rid of that horrible head and getting a standard one as its awful at fine control for trying to get polar aligned, you press the trigger to release, get PA bang on then when you release it jumps to a different posistion....just horrid to use

 

1st subs i tried were at ISO800 and 70 sec subs @ 30mm, no star trails but awful clouds so no long session of data collection, next time im going to try at least 2 min subs @ ISO1600 from my dark site, i really want the sigma 10-20 but thats not going to be any time soon, i just need to remember how to use pixinsight now as ive forgotten so much lol

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