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Shimonu

NEQ6 Polar scope view

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So I got a battery for my mount(Skywatcher NEQ6) and tonight was clear so I thought I would have a first go at setting it up and trying to polar align in my backyard. After setting it up roughly north, altitude roughly matching where I am, having the CW bar out and dec axis rotated 90 degrees I had a look through the polar scope with the mount turned on. Is the whole view supposed to be illuminated red? It felt like the scope was just saturated with the red light rather than showing the sky. I've just never heard anyone describe that and it got me confused. As I was in my backyard I'm in about a bortle 6-ish zone so I'm not sure if Polaris should be visible in the scope but I could faintly see it with my naked eye. But the way the scope looked I wasn't sure I would be able to see anything.

I ended up doing a pretty rough polar alignment using just the telescope.

Now I'm at 58 degrees latitude so trying to get under that scope for a view was not terribly pleasant. I'm pretty sure I'll be getting a camera for polar alignment anyway, but it would be nice to know if this sounds normal and I can still give it a go until I have the camera.

Edited by Shimonu

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There's a setting somewhere in the utilities menu where you can dim the illumination of the polar scope - had to do that on my HEQ5 to be able to see Polaris, so would assume it's the same for the NEQ6.

I'm at 56 deg. myself, so know the problem of getting under the scope.  You can get an angle finder for the polar scope, which makes it considerably less awkward.

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17 hours ago, Erling G-P said:

There's a setting somewhere in the utilities menu where you can dim the illumination of the polar scope - had to do that on my HEQ5 to be able to see Polaris, so would assume it's the same for the NEQ6.

I'm at 56 deg. myself, so know the problem of getting under the scope.  You can get an angle finder for the polar scope, which makes it considerably less awkward.

I'll have another look but I don't think that option is available. Because I believe I found it but when I enter that utility it says it's not available for my mount. Because this is a pretty old second hand mount. I read another thread where someone had accessed the board and measured the voltage for the LED and I might do the same to see if it's incorrect.

I'm assuming it should really just illuminate the reticule to help me position polaris. I guess i should also double check the focus on the scope as I've only tested it terrestrially to do collimation.

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Well maybe it's not as bad as I thought and I'm wondering why nobody has told me it seems perfectly normal and I'm just a dummy.

I had a quick google and of course AstroBackyard comes up and I see this picture:

how-to-polar-align-telescope.jpg

This is pretty much what I see too, just that I couldn't really distinguish any stars. But as I said I'm in my pretty well lit backyard and I still had some twilight when I was looking. So maybe I just need better conditions?

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Yeah, my Neq6 is brilliant red in the polar scope. I've since turned to using the software sharpcap and polar align that way. 

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2 minutes ago, Nigella Bryant said:

Yeah, my Neq6 is brilliant red in the polar scope. I've since turned to using the software sharpcap and polar align that way. 

Have you ever managed to polar align using the scope?

I've heard you can polar align with your telescope and SharpCap but I haven't got a properly working camera yet so the polar scope is all I have right now. I'm waiting on a guy that buys cameras and has them astro-modded to sell. When I hear he's got a camera I'll certainly try SharpCap.

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2 minutes ago, Tenor Viol said:

On the HEQ5 you can adjust the brightness through the utilities menu

Unfortunately this mount seems to old to support that. Had another look at the utilities menu and it's not supported.

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8 minutes ago, Shimonu said:

Have you ever managed to polar align using the scope?

I've heard you can polar align with your telescope and SharpCap but I haven't got a properly working camera yet so the polar scope is all I have right now. I'm waiting on a guy that buys cameras and has them astro-modded to sell. When I hear he's got a camera I'll certainly try SharpCap.

No I use an old zeo ASI 120mm and a guide scope with the software. I got hold of a second hand 50mm guide scope that takes eyepieces or 1 1/4 inch camera nose piece of my zwo camera. Did away with using the polar scope. 

PSX_20200901_213706.jpg

Edited by Nigella Bryant
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Something I noticed a while ago using EQMod and now here is what KStars tells me :) 

Answers on a postcard...

image.thumb.png.511cb054f59d2aae12d089be56179df8.png

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On an unlit polar scope I've shone a red LED torch down the polar scope hole, with the correct angle it should light up the alignment pattern.  Tricky to do, but might give you a chance at least.

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