Re: RAPAS on Mach2

Terri Zittritsch

On Thu, Apr 16, 2020 at 11:17 AM, uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> wrote:
No need to level the mount super accurately. The polar scope will still work well even if you are off by many degrees.
If your mount is not vertical, you can align the polar scope reticle to be vertical:
1) Aim the mount so that the scope points directly at Polaris (put Polaris on the center crosshair).
2) using the mount's altitude adjuster, run Polaris up and down the vertical crosshair. Loosen and turn the eyepiece until the crosshair is aligned with the up-down motion of Polaris.
3) tighten the eyepiece in place and then use the alt and az adjusters to put Polaris at the proper place on the reticle according to the polar app.
Roland, I didn't expect you to respond.    The RAPAS feels like the rest of the kit I have from AP, solid and built like a tank!  Being an engineer, I can appreciate it all.

Throughout the instructions I received, in numerous places, are notes to make sure the mount is level which is why I asked.  It didn't take long to think about the implications of the mount not being level, or more accurately, the RAPAS not being precisely vertical, on the accuracy on polar alignment.   The instructions note that you can loosen the 'do not loosen' screws to readjust the reticle if it's moved during shipping, but doesn't seem to be part of the normal (do every time) alignment process.   At least not in the instructions I have, so thanks for sharing this.
I'm just trying to understand whether there is any way to do really accurate polar alignment, 30" or less,  in order to do short unguided exposures, without going to the traditional drift alignment.. I've found drift alignment to be a miserable process to go through.  Life is too short, and clear skies much shorter!   I'm not setting up on a level surface, or on a pier, every night is different.   Since I have all of the equipment, guiding is not a terrible thing to have to do.   I'm just thinking I have this really really nice mount, and is there any way to take advantage of it's full capability in a portable situation.   


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