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Skywatcher Explorer 130P 2 Things......

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Im very much a newbie to this forum so please excuse me a little...

How long does the battery pack on my Skywatcher Explorer 130 Synscan last...and can I run this scope off a leisure battery. I've a feeling that i can but dont know what lead I would need to get.

Also... the manual is rather basic.....i've got it almost sussed but there is a part that isn't mentioned in the blurb.

It's about 2" in diameter...about 1 and 1/2 " deep... sort of looks like it covers the bit where the lens go..... thats if I unscrewed it all and removed everything......


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Not that I've used one but what voltage does it run on currently? If it's 12v as standard then you should be able to run it from a leisure battery, just find an appropriate lead. If it doesn't, then some kind of step down from 12v to the required volatge is needed. I'm sure it's been done before but how I'm not quite sure.


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Is that the 130p AltAz Synscan... and what battery pack did you get ? I've used a Maplin 17Ah powertank with my NexStar SLT (very similar mount) and my pack is good for hours. The nexstar runs on the standard 12v systems. If that mount allows for AA batteries, you'll struggle, they are good for maybe an hour if you're lucky and don't slew quickly or use the goto...

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I would guess the batteries won't have a long life, and you would be better with a Power Tank. These can be purchased at Halfords or Maplins. Try and get at least a 17 A/H one.

Before you do though, do as Tony said, and establish the voltage you need. If it is 12 volts then go ahead. You probably connect the power via a cable with a ring plug on the end . Make sure the polarity of the centre pin matches that when your dry cell batteries are powering the motors. The Power tank needs to be the same.

It more than likely will be, but don't guess.

The 2" piece you refer to is probably an extension tube for

visual work. it would be removed for imaging to allow focus to reach the camera sensor.


Psjust keep asking questions if you need to. It's what we are here for.;)

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You'll need a cable for the powertank... Steve @ FLO sells them, I'm pretty certain that's exactly the same power requirements as the NexStar SLT, but Steve can confirm the exact cabling you need.

btw Portable Jump Starter and Air Compressor : In-Car Battery Chargers and Compressors : Maplin that's the powertank I have, but they are out of stock...

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Thanks everyone for all the help.... leisure batteries and power tanks look good.... all seem to be 12V but its the 1 amp bit that is stopping me from making the purchase....

Just incase it's of use to anyone..... B&M bargains currently have a powertank on sale at £24.99..... dare i buy one......

1 amp........ 2 amp....... bl**dy hell....

still confused.....byt getting there.

PS.... have emailed FLO for info ......

then its off to shops

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Can it overload it tho.... and burn it out....

What i'd really like is a 110 leisure battery - I go camping so it would get used there too.... and as soon as I mentioned "it's for camping".... the mrs fell for it and said yes (he he!!)..... now i know these are 12V.... but what about the 1 amp bit.....

I'd hate to have the best battery on the campsite with a burned out scope.

Thanks again

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You don't need to worry about the size of the battery. The telescope will only draw the power it needs.

All the Ah rating means is how long the battery will last between charges. If the scope uses 1A per hour a 17Ah battery would theoretically last 17 hours. The reality is nearer 15 hours.


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Dave, two ways you can burn out your scope's drive electronics:

These are not suggestions - DON'T DO THIS AT HOME!

1) Exceed the 12V rated supply voltage.

2) Reverse polarity.

1) You cannot do this with a 12V lead acid battery - even at 13.6V, the mount will be fine.

2) Assuming you use croc clips to connect to your battery, it would be possible to get the polarity wrong, but you will b***er the electronics quicker than you can even think, never mind say "Oh". There is no reverse polarity protection in these units (probably a cost saving thing).

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Thanks all....

Me thinks im off to get a battery this afternon..... then it was suggested to me about keeing it in a cool box.....then have an attacment that goes from battery to a car cig lighter...... then have the lead to scope from a car lighter end piece into the jack plug that fits into the scope....i could leave the battery in a cool box then......easier for humping it around too..... then its a case of quickly open lid...... plug in and go.....


it's all coming clear now........... just wish the bl**dy sky was.....

If this rule about...."every time you get a new scope -it goes cloudy for a fornight" is true.....then i only have 4 more days to wait.....

I did see a star last nite,,, but by the time I got the scope out.....

vamooose...... gone......

Im sick of looking at upside down trees during the day,lol

Thanks again.


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  • 3 weeks later...

Do you really need to buy a cable?

I mean - it's all very well people telling you to go and buy accessories cables from telescope suppliers, but my PowerTank (which is only an Argos cheapie) came with all the cables I need.

Check what's in the box first.

Telescopes do - after all - use completely standard power connectors.

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Depends on the scope to some extent GB - some mounts like the HEQ5 and EQ6 are notorious for playing up with thin power leads especially when it gets cold.

You need a decent solid lead to keep the HEQ5 running when it turns cold as the standard leads most shops sell are too thin and 'choke' the current. The HEQ5/EQ6 can pull 3A and most leads just arent up to it.

To buy the bits to make a cable, as I found out, ends up being almost as expensive as the finished item and you still have to do the work. Ok for those of us who can solder and are confident about our abilitiy to get it right - not so easy for people who cant solder or who arent confident.

Blowing up a motor board on an HEQ5/EQ6 because you got the polarity wrong or did a bad solder job is an expensive mistake :headbang:

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the HEQ5 and EQ6 are notorious for playing up with thin power leads especially when it gets cold.:headbang:

Ah... Interesting... I did notice that the HEQ5 I got from FLO a couple of weeks back came with a suitably impressive "chunky" power cable. 3A?... Wow... Had no idea it was that much... That explains why my Argos PowerTank was flat after a day's kitchen-based testing of the FLO Hitec EQDIR functionality...

Mind you that was fairly artificial - spending a day whizzing the scope about without doing any actual observing. It'll be interesting to see how long I get out of the Power Tank "out in the field" with observing time offset by the cold environment...

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GB - My 7aH tank is flat in about 2 hours in a cold field. My 17aH tank runs dry after about 5 hours based on an average amount of fast slews.

Under a fast slew I have watched my HEQ5 run up past 2amps - havent seen 3 on the gauge yet but an EQ6 can probably pull that under load.

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  • 5 months later...

Just to chip in WAAAAAY late, the 2" ring is the 2" eyepiece adapter. It goes into the focal tube in the pace of the 2" to 1.25 converter.

Seems a bit like engineering overkill to me but hey ho.

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Hi, also to chip in I have this set up and want to get a power lead that will be used from a normal plug socket as it will either run from my kitchen or on a pier at my local astro club that have a power souce so what can I buy to power it before I go mobile with a power pack?

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