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Woody

HEQ5 Syntrek on household power?

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Hello again and thank you for your continuing help.

I plan on getting the HEQ5 Syntrek mount and using a laptop to control it. Can the mount be powered by a normal UK household powerplug? I presume it would need an adapter or transformer or something. I am not very good with my volts,amps, watts etc....I just want to run an extension lead down the back yard and not worry about powertanks and the like.

Thank you

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Yes it can. But the mains are 230 Volts (and that's AC, alternating current) and your mount needs only 12V, direct current. So you need a "wall-brick" gizmo that will do the conversion.

One of these should do it, you need to set it to 12V and make sure (really!) that the polarity is correct. You do that by checking with a voltmeter (after you select the right connector for your mount).

ACDC MultiVoltage 4A Switched Mode Power Supply : Multi Voltage Power Supplies : Maplin

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That's how I'm running mine, just need to get some dew heaters and a camera battery eliminator now..

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Cheapest option would be to look through all your electrical appliances at home. I have found 12V AC/DC 2A transformer was providing power to my old external hard disk. Works fine on my EQ5Synscan mount

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If you don't have a voltmeter or don't know enough about electricity, get someone who does to help you. Going to a meeting of an astro society will get you this help.

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I just want to run an extension lead down the back yard

Just to cover the safety issues here, please ensure that any use of mains electrictity outdoors is used with an RCD protected cable, so any dew or moisture in the system wont blow you across the garden and leave you incapacitated for the rest of the night in a cold dark lonely garden... or even kill you!

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Yes, that'll do the trick. Bear in mind that all (almost) the AC-to-DC "bricks" are designed for indoor use so you'll still need to be careful when you take them outside, give them a little plastic box to sit in, don't put them on wet ground, don't let them get wet, wipe off any dew.

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Great thanks everyone

Themos- The adapter you directed me to is centre positive. The HEQ5 mount needs tip positive. Are they the same thing?

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I bought a 10m section of arctic cable designed for real cold weather and put all the electrics and laptop in a lidded plastic box. The power supplies help keep the laptop display warm too :).

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Great thanks everyone

Themos- The adapter you directed me to is centre positive. The HEQ5 mount needs tip positive. Are they the same thing?

Yes they are but careful! The adaptor comes with many different connectors, only one of which will be right for the mount, a 2.1mm centre hole (not the 2.5mm which has a bigger hole and will not sit snug into the socket). When you come to put the connector on the end of the adaptor cable you will have a choice. They do that so that they can accommodate both tip-positive and tip-negative devices. Hopefully the connectors will be marked somehow so you know which way round to connect cable and connector (it's confusing without pictures, isn't it?). Anyway, make sure you get a voltmeter and read the volts that are coming out of it before you offer it up to your mount's socket.

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Modern astromony sell mains adapters for both heq5 and eq6. I have both and they work very well:)

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Gosh, this thread is a year old!

There was another similer one in Equipment Discusion that I responded to. I had tingles from a step dowm PSU on my HEQ5, so dumped it and got a power tank pronto.

I have a mate you's a qualified electrician so may ask him about getting a permanant mains feed to the bottom of my garden where the 'scope is.

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Its often a problem with switch mode supplies. I have also read that sometimes the mount wont woek will with a switched mode power supply, some electronics dont like being fed from switched mode supplies.

You could always get just a basic regulated supply, which eliminates both problems. I have one I bot from Rapid electronics. Only cost about £30 and its been the bong. You could leave the power supply indoors and just run a long 12v cable down the garden.

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Another vote for a regulated 13.8v power supply like this one: http://www.maplin.co.uk/13.8v-regulated-mains-power-units-231 - and get the 7A one as you may need to supply power to other bits and pieces like dew strips etc. 13.8v?? Yes - this is the voltage at which a fully charged "12v" battery actually operates. Your mount is designed for 12-15v input. My HEQ5 runs happily on one of these.

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I know, was just doing some reading before heading to Maplins to get a powers source for my HEQ5.

I was going to go for a bog standard variable voltage supply for £10 until I read this. I'll probably go for a regulated bench-top one now.

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The maplin 13.8 volt 7 Amp PSU will do the job, while your there, buy enough twin core cable to run from inside your house to where the mount will be placed, mine is around 10m in length and made into a loom, 2 X power cables, 2 X 10m Repeater USB's, i have used a Netger 12v 2 amp supply but the voltage only shown 11 volts on the mount and lead to the Mounts Red LED flickering, nice steady light with the Maplin, the HEQ5 will require a 11 - 15 volt, nearer the upper limit will give a better slew and tracking....

7 amp type

http://www.maplin.co.uk/13.8v-regulated-mains-power-units-231

2.1 mm short type tip is positive

http://www.maplin.co.uk/dc-power-plugs-43084

Ask what cable type they sell, twin with or with out a screen will do, need to fit inside the 2.1mm plug shield....

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Beware PSUs with a fan

They are ventilated, so not so good outside, and the quiet fan when you test it indoors sounds like an aeroplane at 2am.

I'd go with the modern astronomy PSUs and use an RCD.

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I've got for the bench PSU and will run a cable from inside the house to the scope as per Tinkler. It seems like the best and safest way to do it.

Got some 10amp rated cable for the lead.

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Tested the setup and it works great, no power drop.

I'll have to see how it copes with a long lead but hopefully all sorted now.

The shopping list was as follows:

Regulated power supply 13.8v 7Amp

2x 4mm Plugs (one Red and one Black)

Cigarette Lighter Socket (solder positive to the centre and negative to the side)

Here is how it should look:

post-21891-0-22934200-1353275251_thumb.j

This was just the test setup, I'm planning to extend the lead up to 10m so I can run it from the house into the garden. Hopefully the 10Amp rated wire will mean there is enough power even with a 10m cable.

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Don't know if anyone will see this - the thread being so old but I've just bought a Maplin XM21X 13.8v, 7A bench power supply to power my HEQ5. I'm feeling nervous now as the instruction manual says, 'This unit must not be used to......operate any equipment containing a motor'. It's definitely not going to damage my mount, is it?

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