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Revs

SW Electric Focuser on 127 Mak

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Hi guys. I thought I'd show you how I got on with fitting the SkyWatcher Electric Focuser on the Mak. It's not perfect but it works and it was easy to fit.

I just drillied a 4mm hole in one of the brackets that came with the focuser kit and used the existing M4 bolt holding the dovetail on to the scope to hold the focuser bracket aswell. I used an o-ring to transfer the drive to the focus knob and hey presto, job done!

The negatives with this are; the focuser motor limits the ability to balance the scope perfectly with the camera on (it's fine with EP's) but it's good enough for now, and there is a bit of stretch in the o-ring which causes more back-lash, but not enough to be a problem.

The end result is that I can now focus the scope without touching it, I can still easily turn the knob manually and it can all be removed in seconds. I may make a better bracket at some point and maybe even use gears instead of the o-ring, but I'll se how it goes.

Some pics..

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Just been out to try it for a little terrestrial viewing and it works great, I'm really pleased! Even with the mag right up the image is really steady while focusing, making very easy and accurate. Can't wait to try it on Jupiter :icon_salut:

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Wow looks great. I will look to buy one of these shortly :-)

I can't believe the amount of kit you have on that mount! Do you find you have to be very careful when using the camera or the Alt motor with move out of place? On my Supatrak the Azimuth motor is good and solid, but the alt motor is weak and will easily move.

Also another quick Q.. how are you pwering your mount? Still using batteries?

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Cheers bud. No I don't have a problem with it slipping, but I balance it as carefully as I can. As for the power; I use an old car battery I got from a scrappers. I also got a cig lighter which I soldered a wire on with croc. clips on the other end and a 4 channel basic controller which I plug in to the socket. I then plug all the bits (scope, heaters, etc) in to that. I'll PM you a pic if you like?

I had this setup within a week of buying the scope, as the 1st time I went out with it the lenses misted up. With the objective lens and the diagonal heated I have no more mist problems :icon_salut:

Edited by Revs

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Revs what connector did you use to actually connect power to the mount? Have a look at my post in the equipment/help section. I bought a power cable but it doesn't fit properly in my mount. I'm wondering if the manfacture has changed the socket/plug design slightly because of previous issues with the power plugs falling out.

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Hi,

I have just acquired this Mak and have a skywatcher focuser for my 102 f/5 refractor, so I might have a go at this myself. Do you mind me asking what size O-ring you used?

Brian

Edited by smerral

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Nice work! I know what you mean about the image wobbling while focussing.

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Hi,

I have just acquired this Mak and have a skywatcher focuser for my 102 f/5 refractor, so I might have a go at this myself. Do you mind me asking what size O-ring you used?

Brian

Hi Brian, I'm using a 4x44 o-ring, but it's a bit short. There's adjustment on the bracket so I would think anything from 45-55 would be fine. Just make sure you don't get it too tight as the focus knob will stick :eek:

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Hi Paul,

Finally got hold of some O-rings (50mm) and it works fine! Just need to test it under the stars - may get a chance this evening with a bit of luck. This is great for me as I only image using a webcam so there are no real balancing problems. Also I prefer this set up to the refractor as you can't really manually focus with the autofocuser attached. But now all I need to do is remove the o-ring. :)

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Jolly good :)

Be careful not to get the o-ring tension too tight. There are only plain bearings round the focus knob shaft (as opposed to ball bearings) so too much tension will cause it to stick and also increase image shift, not to mention the added wear. Have it just tight enough to work and keep the surfaces grease free :D

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Thanks Paul, I used it last night and it was fine - just a slight backlash from the o-ring but certainly much easier than trying to fiddle with it manually. :) Maybe I'll just slack it off a bit, but I find that with the 50mm ring I need to have the bracket close to full extension otherwise it's too slack to turn.

Edited by smerral

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I realise this is an old post but seeing as I have a spare motor I thought I would try this,  I have a question though> your dovetail seems to be directly below the focuser whereas on mine the dovetail is at the bottom and the focuser is to the side, would it just be a case of getting longer O rings ?

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