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So last night i went to set up the auto guiding. I’m using the ZWO 120 mini with guide scope, heq5 pro mount and the ASIair pro. All my settings were the same as previous sessions expected the focus seemed to be the best I’ve had it.  Chose a star and after about 60 steps west I get a notification saying calibration failed star did not move enough. I tried this a fair few times but kept getting the same results. I then change a few settings and chose a couple other stars but to no joy. 
 

I read somewhere that I could of been focusing on a hot pixel but I believe this wasn’t the case. My cables were all attached properly so don’t think these were the issue either. On the other hand tho I did have my dew heaters plugged into the ASIair for the first time and that an issue with the mount when I tried to polar align. The mount was trying to turn 60 degrees in the RA, the motor was running but the mount wouldn’t move. After a few tweaks I did sort this problem, so I’m unsure if this could of affected the guiding? 
 

Has anyone had the same or similar issues? Any help would be appreciated.  
 

Thanks 

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This is likely a power issue. The ASIair Pro has a max input of 6A (12-15v) and power/usb ports which can share that.  Though in total those ports could use more than 6A, ZWO don't expect them all to be asking for their full capacitiy so mention your setup should not use more than 6A.

It also mentions a suggested minimum power supply of 12v 2A.

I'm guessing that you have your mount powered by the ASIair based on the alignment issue you had earlier.

So as you have discovered a simple usage, even powering the mount, can work. But once you start loading more pwer hungry gear then it's best to run the mount on a separate supply. That too is mentioned in the user manual. A pity they don't put this all in one place and explain it properly for the new users.

 

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Did you check the focus was ok though? I am not using asiair and I am very new to this but pretty sure I got those same sort of messages via NINA/PHD2 when I was not focused properly....

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5 hours ago, Thorney said:

The mount was trying to turn 60 degrees in the RA, the motor was running but the mount wouldn’t move. After a few tweaks I did sort this problem, so I’m unsure if this could of affected the guiding? 

That would have been the cause of the "not enough movement" message - RA and Dec have to move to Calibrate and Guide.

Michael

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I've had a similar issue on a couple of different occasions (albeit with the older version of the ASIair.  How far (if at all) did the mount move within the 60 steps?  Yours sounds weird if things had all worked previously, although I've found some settings reset following an update to the app etc, so worth double-checking the settings are still the same as you remember.  And just in case helpful, some things I got wrong at various points were:

- Tried to calibrate guiding on Polaris

- Plugged the ST4 cable into the ASIair rather than the camera

- Hadn't given a big enough figure for the calibration steps in the guiding menu

- Not provided enough power (either to the ASIair or to the mount I was trying to guide)

Hopefully something helpful there.  Good luck!

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Thank you all for the reply’s. 
 

The mount was connected to the mains as was the ASIair. I normally just control the mount, guide camera and main camera through the ASIair but last night I also connected 2 dew straps into the port. So maybe these could of been affecting the power? 
 

As for the focus that seemed fine as it was selecting the stars for guiding, I even knocked it slightly out of focus and selected my own stars but still wouldn’t work. 
 

The none movement on the RA for 60 degrees was for the polar alignment but once that worked I was able to slew to the targets without a problem. From then is when I tried to set up guiding. 
 

I’m not entirely sure how much the mount moved in the 60 steps as each time was different and I was getting rather frustrated with it all. Off the top of my head I can’t remember what my settings were but I did turn up the aggressiveness on them all but still had no luck. 

I shall attempt again but with out the dew straps connect as this seemed to work before. Failing that I can try guiding on the Star Adventurer and if that works then I know it must be something with my HEQ5? 
 

Thanks again for your comments. 

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What are you powering all this with?

Your problem has all the hallmarks of a power issue, it's a common enough problem to merit checking the power supply first before looking elsewhere or suspecting the mount.

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I’ve had problems with guiding calibration on the ASIair before. I managed to get a good calibration by changing the calibration step and max ra and Dec durations. Can’t remember if I increased or lowered it but you can give it a go. Worth a try anyway!

Edit: Hadn’t noticed @Delboy_Hog has suggested this already
 

image.jpeg.bb92e3d2611a3733e444682f407d7198.jpeg

Edited by Icesheet
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13 hours ago, StevieDvd said:

What are you powering all this with?

Your problem has all the hallmarks of a power issue, it's a common enough problem to merit checking the power supply first before looking elsewhere or suspecting the mount.

I’m using 2 AC/DC 12v 5A. One to power the mount and the other to power the ASIair. These are then connected to an extension lead which is then connected to an outdoor socket. 
 

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13 hours ago, Icesheet said:

I’ve had problems with guiding calibration on the ASIair before. I managed to get a good calibration by changing the calibration step and max ra and Dec durations. Can’t remember if I increased or lowered it but you can give it a go. Worth a try anyway!

Edit: Hadn’t noticed @Delboy_Hog has suggested this already
 

image.jpeg.bb92e3d2611a3733e444682f407d7198.jpeg

These look similar to my settings apart from the focal length to the guide scope. I assume you are using a different one to me? Also my Auto restore calibration was off as I think I have been doing that manually. I shall be double checking this though. 
 

Thanks 

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1 hour ago, Thorney said:

These look similar to my settings apart from the focal length to the guide scope. I assume you are using a different one to me? Also my Auto restore calibration was off as I think I have been doing that manually. I shall be double checking this though. 
 

Thanks 


Hi,

 

This isn’t actually my settings. Just a screen grab from the internet to show you where to look. Yeah I would have auto restore on unless you are imaging from different locations all the time. I only reset the calibration if I’m getting bad guiding that I can’t troubleshoot. 
 

Also, you mention your focus was as good as it’s been. As far as I’m aware it’s actually good practice not to have perfect focus. Just slightly out of focus is good as this makes it easier for the algorithm to track the star centroid. Probably something mathematical behind it but have a Google about it. 

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2 hours ago, Thorney said:

I’m using 2 AC/DC 12v 5A. One to power the mount and the other to power the ASIair. These are then connected to an extension lead which is then connected to an outdoor socket. 
 

That would seem to remove a power problem from the possible causes, though next time it occurs check whether the power led on the HEQ5 flashes.  It's also worth checking the simple things like the mount clutches were tight enough (I'm sure a few here have done that before - me included) and that the mount was balanced.

If it is repeatable only with the dew straps added in that would seem to indicate an issue with the ASIair side. You mentioned you made a few tweaks to get the mount to move so you could PA - was that working then with the dew straps still on - and where/what was tweaked?

And are these dew straps going in the 12v power sockets on the ASIair or are you using USB powered ones?  I'm thinking where the conflict might be, issues with usb ports etc. 

It would help if you listed what's connected to what in case someone recognises a similar issue. Like what main camera you use, do you connect an ST4 cable and an eqdir cable (direct to mount or via handset).

 

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On 24/02/2021 at 10:16, StevieDvd said:

That would seem to remove a power problem from the possible causes, though next time it occurs check whether the power led on the HEQ5 flashes.  It's also worth checking the simple things like the mount clutches were tight enough (I'm sure a few here have done that before - me included) and that the mount was balanced.

If it is repeatable only with the dew straps added in that would seem to indicate an issue with the ASIair side. You mentioned you made a few tweaks to get the mount to move so you could PA - was that working then with the dew straps still on - and where/what was tweaked?

And are these dew straps going in the 12v power sockets on the ASIair or are you using USB powered ones?  I'm thinking where the conflict might be, issues with usb ports etc. 

It would help if you listed what's connected to what in case someone recognises a similar issue. Like what main camera you use, do you connect an ST4 cable and an eqdir cable (direct to mount or via handset).

 

The mount is connected to the ASIair with a EQMOD cable, ST4 from the guide camera to the mount and usb from guide camera to ASIair. My DSLR is connected with a USB and the Dew straps were connected via the DC 12v ports. 
 

I have set up tonight and everything seems to be working ok. I haven’t got the dew straps connected though so I am thinking these could of been the problem or it’s just a coincidence. I shall try with these tomorrow and see what happens then. 
 

Thank you all for the advice and help. 

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On 23/02/2021 at 18:36, Icesheet said:

I’ve had problems with guiding calibration on the ASIair before. I managed to get a good calibration by changing the calibration step and max ra and Dec durations. Can’t remember if I increased or lowered it but you can give it a go. Worth a try anyway!

Edit: Hadn’t noticed @Delboy_Hog has suggested this already
 

image.jpeg.bb92e3d2611a3733e444682f407d7198.jpeg

I had the exact same problem as the OP last night. It seems the asiair pro (in my case) defaults the calibration step to 500ms. By changing this to 1000ms it then calibrated and started guiding ok. It did take about 30 steps to do this though. I did notice that before when guiding around Orion it only took about 20 steps. Last night I was Guiding near the heart and soul nebula which is relatively close to Polaris. I suppose the nearer you are to Polaris the less the guide star will move. It seems upping the calibration may fix this???

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It makes sense the closer to Polaris you are the less a guide star will move. How that plays into the calibration I don’t know. It does seem that the PHD2 ‘lite’ version the ASIair uses is a little erratic. I certainly have to fiddle more with settings and do more calibrations than when I was using the full PHD2 on my laptop. Also, I’ve had runaway guiding a few times but I think I worked that one out. It’s after I cross the meridian then I have to go into settings and flip my calibration then it starts guiding again. Just in case you come across that.   

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16 hours ago, Thorney said:

The mount is connected to the ASIair with a EQMOD cable, ST4 from the guide camera to the mount and usb from guide camera to ASIair. My DSLR is connected with a USB and the Dew straps were connected via the DC 12v ports. 
 

I have set up tonight and everything seems to be working ok. I haven’t got the dew straps connected though so I am thinking these could of been the problem or it’s just a coincidence. I shall try with these tomorrow and see what happens then. 
 

Thank you all for the advice and help. 

OK just to check:

When you connect the Dew straps are you making any changes to the power port settings - the dew heater setting has a power percentage option?

Any reason for using the ST4 cable, this can be handled via the usb/eqdir cable so less cable clutter?

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On 26/02/2021 at 14:49, StevieDvd said:

OK just to check:

When you connect the Dew straps are you making any changes to the power port settings - the dew heater setting has a power percentage option?

Any reason for using the ST4 cable, this can be handled via the usb/eqdir cable so less cable clutter?

All the ports were turned on so I turned off the ones I wasn’t using and set the dew straps to about 60%. As for the ST4 cable,  I always thought I needed it? I won’t connect that next time then. One less thing to get tangled. 
 

I managed to guide again last night so I’m hoping the problem has sorted it’s self.

Edited by Thorney
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  • 1 month later...
On 23/02/2021 at 05:07, StevieDvd said:

This is likely a power issue. The ASIair Pro has a max input of 6A (12-15v) and power/usb ports which can share that.  Though in total those ports could use more than 6A, ZWO don't expect them all to be asking for their full capacitiy so mention your setup should not use more than 6A.

It also mentions a suggested minimum power supply of 12v 2A.

I'm guessing that you have your mount powered by the ASIair based on the alignment issue you had earlier.

So as you have discovered a simple usage, even powering the mount, can work. But once you start loading more pwer hungry gear then it's best to run the mount on a separate supply. That too is mentioned in the user manual. A pity they don't put this all in one place and explain it properly for the new users.

 

Thank you for the tip!

  I was having the same problem and the issue resolved after I supplied more power rather than plugging everything into the ASIAIR PRO. 

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