Date   

Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Mark Acker
 

I am in the same place as you.  I have 3, 2 of which are use simultaneously, and have had no issues at all.  I think someone mentioned once that there are versions based on both FTDI and Prolific (though I could be mistaken), so maybe that factors into it as well.  In any case, they have all worked splendidly.  In fact, they are the ones I recommend whenever anyone asks about converters.

Mark


________________________________
From: photonphisher <parijat_singh@yahoo.com>
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2012 10:07 AM
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)


 
Some people don't have problems with the Tripp Lite / Keyspan device >but mine went into the garbage and I will never have another.
Both of my Keyspan USB-serial converters have been performing great and are rock solid no problems for 2+ years now.


Re: NCG7380 Photo

Roland Christen
 

It may be a tough object, but you got it well with your scope. Excellent result.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: notgnirramot <notgnirra@mchsi.com>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Thu, Oct 18, 2012 4:52 am
Subject: [ap-gto] NCG7380 Photo


Here is a photo of NCG7380 and Sharpless 142 aka the Wizard Nebula. 3 hours of
LRGB taken on a nice night in September. I found this to be a tough object to
process, lots of stars and a dim nebula. After many approaches here is a
version I like.

Comments are welcome.

http://tinyurl.com/9ot62fx
or
http://www.pbase.com/tom_arrington/image/146528272

Tom



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Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

parijat_singh
 

Some people don't have problems with the Tripp Lite / Keyspan device >but mine went into the garbage and I will never have another.
Both of my Keyspan USB-serial converters have been performing great and are rock solid no problems for 2+ years now.


Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

observe_m13
 

I had a problem with the Tripp Lite USA-19HS Keyspan High-Speed USB to Serial Adapter connected directly to my laptop. After about an hour it would lock up randomly and quit communicating. After fiddling around with it and its settings for a while, I gave up on it.

I dug around and eventually found Win7 drivers for my old Edgeport/4 which I had used extensively with XP. Since it worked superbly, I bought an Edgeport/1 and a Sabrent FTDI USB to Serial single port. Which I use in two different set-ups. Both the Edgeport and Sabrent units work flawlessly, direct with standard 5m USB cables, direct via an "active" 10m USB cable, via 3 connected 5m "active" USB extenders, and with the Icron Ranger on both 25m CAT5 and 100m CAT5 and replaced with CAT6 since the CAT5 was getting damaged and kinked from repeated outdoor use.

Some people don't have problems with the Tripp Lite / Keyspan device but mine went into the garbage and I will never have another.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, Zak Foreman <zakky2k@...> wrote:

I'd love to hear more peoples experience using the combination of the Icron Ranger and the Tripplite Keyspan (4 port in my case). I assume Geralds problems are the exception rather than the rule?

I was hoping to use these to remote control the 1600 and cameras/accessories, especially during the cooler months (reached -18C some nights last winter, a bit too chilly for my liking!).

I would be using a Dell XPS / Win7 64 bit laptop.

Thanks!

Zak


NCG7380 Photo

notgnirramot <notgnirra@...>
 

Here is a photo of NCG7380 and Sharpless 142 aka the Wizard Nebula. 3 hours of LRGB taken on a nice night in September. I found this to be a tough object to process, lots of stars and a dim nebula. After many approaches here is a version I like.

Comments are welcome.

http://tinyurl.com/9ot62fx
or
http://www.pbase.com/tom_arrington/image/146528272

Tom


Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Richard Moore
 

I have been using the Icron Ranger/4 port Keyspan USB-Serial converter combination for several months now. It was sold to me by AP. This combination has been controlling my 1200GTO, Kendrick dew heater controller, RCOS TCC that controls the scope's focuser and secondary heater, all of them RS232 devices. And through another one of the Icron Ranger's USB ports, my SBIG STL11000 camera, AO-L and filter wheel. I use the ASCOM AP Driver for the 1200GTO which has not reported any communication errors. And there has not been any problems using the combination. I use a Dell 64 bit Win7 laptop. I also use a 32 bit Win 7 netbook at times. Both computers control the system without problems. The software is Sky6 and CCDSoft.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "gmillerok" <grmok1@...> wrote:

The Icron Ranger and Startech 4port USB/serial converter work perfectly if that helps. Just don't buy the Keyspan/Tripplite device. I ran a Pyxis rotator and the Mach1GTO through the Startech to the Icron Ranger and then ran a QSI683wsg, Lodestar guider, and micro touch focuser through the Icron directly.

Not a single issue so far with anything with this combination. Note the range is limited to 150' if I remember correctly.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, Zak Foreman <zakky2k@> wrote:

I'd love to hear more peoples experience using the combination of the Icron Ranger and the Tripplite Keyspan (4 port in my case). I assume Geralds problems are the exception rather than the rule?

I was hoping to use these to remote control the 1600 and cameras/accessories, especially during the cooler months (reached -18C some nights last winter, a bit too chilly for my liking!).

I would be using a Dell XPS / Win7 64 bit laptop.

Thanks!

Zak


Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Zak Foreman
 

Thanks Gerald, its good to know that alternatives exist and work. As AP recommend the Keyspan, it obviously has been successfully tested under some configurations.

Tell me, does your keyspan work when connected directly to your PC? Or does it just not play nice with the Icron your have?

Anyone else care to share their experiences?

All the best,
Zak

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "gmillerok" <grmok1@...> wrote:

The Icron Ranger and Startech 4port USB/serial converter work perfectly if that helps. Just don't buy the Keyspan/Tripplite device. I ran a Pyxis rotator and the Mach1GTO through the Startech to the Icron Ranger and then ran a QSI683wsg, Lodestar guider, and micro touch focuser through the Icron directly.

Not a single issue so far with anything with this combination. Note the range is limited to 150' if I remember correctly.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, Zak Foreman <zakky2k@> wrote:

I'd love to hear more peoples experience using the combination of the Icron Ranger and the Tripplite Keyspan (4 port in my case). I assume Geralds problems are the exception rather than the rule?

I was hoping to use these to remote control the 1600 and cameras/accessories, especially during the cooler months (reached -18C some nights last winter, a bit too chilly for my liking!).

I would be using a Dell XPS / Win7 64 bit laptop.

Thanks!

Zak


Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Gerald Miller
 

The Icron Ranger and Startech 4port USB/serial converter work perfectly if that helps. Just don't buy the Keyspan/Tripplite device. I ran a Pyxis rotator and the Mach1GTO through the Startech to the Icron Ranger and then ran a QSI683wsg, Lodestar guider, and micro touch focuser through the Icron directly.

Not a single issue so far with anything with this combination. Note the range is limited to 150' if I remember correctly.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, Zak Foreman <zakky2k@...> wrote:

I'd love to hear more peoples experience using the combination of the Icron Ranger and the Tripplite Keyspan (4 port in my case). I assume Geralds problems are the exception rather than the rule?

I was hoping to use these to remote control the 1600 and cameras/accessories, especially during the cooler months (reached -18C some nights last winter, a bit too chilly for my liking!).

I would be using a Dell XPS / Win7 64 bit laptop.

Thanks!

Zak


Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

Christopher Erickson
 

Apparently I came across too aggressive and I apologize for that, it wasn't
intended.

And I was responding to the thread, not to you specifically.

Clear skies and chocolate!

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com

-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
tucstargzr
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 6:07 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

Easy there, Chris. Nothing I said should have given you ANY perception I was
doing a USB-Serial conversion. So to be clear, I'm Merrily using the same
computer with 32 bit WIN7, serial connection between the mount and desktop
computer.

If you missed that part, is it possible you assumed incorrectly on the other
points? Let's keep it friendly here as Life is too short as it is.

Tom

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Erickson"
<christopher.k.erickson@...> wrote:

It's not about serial-USB conversion, it's not the OS and it's not about
the
planetarium software.

It's all about the adapter's driver software and the authors who did a
fast
job instead of a good job.

If everyone who is having troubles with serial-to-USB adapters were to
switch to adapters using FTDI chips and drivers, their serial adapter
problems would go away.

Stop buying the junk from the box stores and gas stations.

Get this and then install the correct drivers for it and your particular
OS:

http://www.parallax.com/StoreSearchResults/tabid/768/txtSearch/ftdi/List/0/S
ortField/4/ProductID/378/Default.aspx


Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com



-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
tucstargzr
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 11:35 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

I'll also note that current generation MOBOs still have a Serial
Connector.
The correct Connector/Cable/Back plate is easy to find for 10 bucks.

Maybe it's me, but using a 64 bit Win7 OS I have issues getting the Serial
Port to work with my planetarium (ECU). Life is too short to bang my head
against the wall so I'm running a 32 bit version.

Tom



--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" <groups1@> wrote:

Hi Gerald,

since no laptops or PC's have no serial ports.
Actually there are some desktop computers that still come with serial
ports built in (e.g. some of the Dell Optiplex and
Precision desktops).

If you are using a desktop without a serial port the best solution is a
2-port PCI and PCI-express card. They run from
$10-40 usually and are much more robust than the USB/serial adapters.
You
can find them at Newegg or Amazon.

-Ray Gralak
Author of Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC)
Author of PEMPro: http://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: http://www.gralak.com/apdriver
Author of PulseGuide: http://www.pulseguide.com
Author of Sigma: http://www.gralak.com/sigma



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Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 2013.0.2740 / Virus Database: 2614/5832 - Release Date: 10/14/12








------------------------------------

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Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

tucstargzr
 

Easy there, Chris. Nothing I said should have given you ANY perception I was doing a USB-Serial conversion. So to be clear, I'm Merrily using the same computer with 32 bit WIN7, serial connection between the mount and desktop computer.

If you missed that part, is it possible you assumed incorrectly on the other points? Let's keep it friendly here as Life is too short as it is.

Tom

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Erickson" <christopher.k.erickson@...> wrote:

It's not about serial-USB conversion, it's not the OS and it's not about the
planetarium software.

It's all about the adapter's driver software and the authors who did a fast
job instead of a good job.

If everyone who is having troubles with serial-to-USB adapters were to
switch to adapters using FTDI chips and drivers, their serial adapter
problems would go away.

Stop buying the junk from the box stores and gas stations.

Get this and then install the correct drivers for it and your particular OS:

http://www.parallax.com/StoreSearchResults/tabid/768/txtSearch/ftdi/List/0/S
ortField/4/ProductID/378/Default.aspx


Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com



-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
tucstargzr
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 11:35 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

I'll also note that current generation MOBOs still have a Serial Connector.
The correct Connector/Cable/Back plate is easy to find for 10 bucks.

Maybe it's me, but using a 64 bit Win7 OS I have issues getting the Serial
Port to work with my planetarium (ECU). Life is too short to bang my head
against the wall so I'm running a 32 bit version.

Tom



--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" <groups1@> wrote:

Hi Gerald,

since no laptops or PC's have no serial ports.
Actually there are some desktop computers that still come with serial
ports built in (e.g. some of the Dell Optiplex and
Precision desktops).

If you are using a desktop without a serial port the best solution is a
2-port PCI and PCI-express card. They run from
$10-40 usually and are much more robust than the USB/serial adapters. You
can find them at Newegg or Amazon.

-Ray Gralak
Author of Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC)
Author of PEMPro: http://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: http://www.gralak.com/apdriver
Author of PulseGuide: http://www.pulseguide.com
Author of Sigma: http://www.gralak.com/sigma



------------------------------------

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see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gtoYahoo! Groups Links



-----
No virus found in this message.
Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 2013.0.2740 / Virus Database: 2614/5832 - Release Date: 10/14/12






Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question

Howard Hedlund
 

Just two. Third contact is the mating piece of the plate.

Mag. 7 Skies!

Howard Hedlund
Astro-Physics, Inc.
Phone: 815-282-1513
www.astro-physics.com<http://www.astro-physics.com/>
Please include this e-mail with your response.

P Consider the environment before printing this e-mail.


From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of gmillerok
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 10:50 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question



I already tightened them but knowing better I didn't use much force-just enough to take out the slack. I can't remember if I went back and forth though.

Are there just two screw to adjust?

And thanks for the additional instructions.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, Howard <howard@...<mailto:howard@...>> wrote:

Hi guys,

Sorry! I got a bit behind in my post reading. Anyway, you were correct to tighten up the set screws a bit. These screws each push on a hard little ball to take up the tiny bit of slack that is required in order for us to assemble the parts. Tighten ONLY enough to remove the slack! Also, tighten each of the screws equally, going back and forth between them a small bit at a time.

Mag. 7 Skies!

Howard Hedlund
Astro-Physics, Inc.
Phone: 815-282-1513
www.astro-physics.com<http://www.astro-physics.com/>
Please include this e-mail with your response.

P Consider the environment before printing this e-mail.


From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>] On Behalf Of John Gaul
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:29 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question



Gerald,

Thanks for posting your experience. I have exactly the same "squelch" thing with my 2011 Mach1 - you describe it well. I saw the screws, but didn't try tightening them up, for fear of straining something. Now I might try it some time, gently.

Best regards

John

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com><mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@<mailto:grmok1@>> wrote:

Thanks, just wanted to be sure.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com><mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, chris1011@ wrote:


Sounds like you fixed the problem.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: gmillerok <grmok1@>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com><mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>>
Sent: Wed, Oct 17, 2012 5:39 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question


Howard, Roland, or anyone at AP, I was wondering if you could comment on my
post? Thanks.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com><mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@> wrote:

I noticed that there was some "slop" after reassembling my mount on my
permenant pier when I would push/pull on the counterweight bar lighly when the
scope was in Park 1 position. I could hear something that sounded like grease
sticking and unsticking if that makes sense, and could see the rotating azimuth
moving vertically and seemed a bit loose under the mount. I noticed that there
were two small allen screws on the east and west side, and I tightened them and
that seemed to fix the issue. There are no instructions for that (at least that
I could find), so was that the correct thing to do? If so, is there anything I
need to know as to how tight, etc., to turn these small allen screws? Is there a
third under the adjuster knob assembly that I should adjust as well(I couldn't
see one).

Thanks,
Gerald



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Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Gerald Miller
 

Well, that sure would have been nice to know since all Windows based machines now come with Win7! I guess I could go back to Vista! :-)

I didn't have crashes, just comm failures although i never used it for long. Actually it worked fine when connected directly. The problem only occurs when using it with the Icron Ranger.

Maybe, AP may want to reconsider it's recommendation.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "pgwsteve" <steve@...> wrote:

I bought the USB to 4 port serial converter from AP and installed it into my obs. I would have random BSOD occurrences that would really mess up an imaging session. It got to a point where I could no longer make it through an evening so I had to investigate the issue in depth with the help of the IT guy I employ. Using a special viewer to look at the dump file related to the crash, a driver related to the event kept showing up, WDS84 or something IIRC, I could check if needed.

I verified it was the Tripplite driver and filled out a tech support request on their site. Needless to say I spoke to a tech and they stated that Windows 7 wasn't supported, and it was unlikely it would be. By the end if the day I had a 2 port RS232 card installed and no BSOD since.

I agree with the uselessness of USB for all applications other than picture download. The Ethernet port on some SBIG cameras is interesting.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Erickson" <christopher.k.erickson@> wrote:

USB appears to be simple to the user but is incredibly-complex to the
developer. RS-232 is simple for developers, especially since it is
built-into just about all microcontrollers.

When the data-rate is low, RS-232 is the fastest, cheapest and most
reliable interface to implement in microcontroller-based devices.

All of the USB-to-Serial problems I have ever investigated to date have
been related to brand-X adapters, their junky drivers or because the
user installed the wrong drivers for his/her particular OS.

I hope this helps.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com



-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Pete Su
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:50 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the
SKy 6)

I could get behind Ethernet.

I find the fascination with RS232 in astronomy circles to be puzzling.
While there are certainly reasons that embedded industrial control
applications still use them (super simple device interfaces) this is
not what we are doing with telescope mounts. Telescope mounts (and
cameras, and all the other devices) use the serial line to send
commands to the mount controller which are then translated into lower
level signal to the motors or whatnot. The only rational reason I can
see to prefer RS232 for this above anything else is cable length, but
even that's a red herring IMHO. Ethernet cable runs can be just as
long and what "everyone" ends up doing anyway is to remote control the
mount using a second computer and TCP/IP, which doesn't even need a
wire.

So yeah, ethernet. It's almost as old as RS-232 anyway (invented in
the 70s, vs. the 60s).

Pete


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-----
No virus found in this message.
Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 2013.0.2740 / Virus Database: 2614/5832 - Release Date: 10/14/12


Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question

Gerald Miller
 

I already tightened them but knowing better I didn't use much force-just enough to take out the slack. I can't remember if I went back and forth though.

Are there just two screw to adjust?

And thanks for the additional instructions.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, Howard <howard@...> wrote:

Hi guys,

Sorry! I got a bit behind in my post reading. Anyway, you were correct to tighten up the set screws a bit. These screws each push on a hard little ball to take up the tiny bit of slack that is required in order for us to assemble the parts. Tighten ONLY enough to remove the slack! Also, tighten each of the screws equally, going back and forth between them a small bit at a time.

Mag. 7 Skies!

Howard Hedlund
Astro-Physics, Inc.
Phone: 815-282-1513
www.astro-physics.com<http://www.astro-physics.com/>
Please include this e-mail with your response.

P Consider the environment before printing this e-mail.


From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John Gaul
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:29 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question



Gerald,

Thanks for posting your experience. I have exactly the same "squelch" thing with my 2011 Mach1 - you describe it well. I saw the screws, but didn't try tightening them up, for fear of straining something. Now I might try it some time, gently.

Best regards

John

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@<mailto:grmok1@>> wrote:

Thanks, just wanted to be sure.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, chris1011@ wrote:


Sounds like you fixed the problem.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: gmillerok <grmok1@>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>>
Sent: Wed, Oct 17, 2012 5:39 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question


Howard, Roland, or anyone at AP, I was wondering if you could comment on my
post? Thanks.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@> wrote:

I noticed that there was some "slop" after reassembling my mount on my
permenant pier when I would push/pull on the counterweight bar lighly when the
scope was in Park 1 position. I could hear something that sounded like grease
sticking and unsticking if that makes sense, and could see the rotating azimuth
moving vertically and seemed a bit loose under the mount. I noticed that there
were two small allen screws on the east and west side, and I tightened them and
that seemed to fix the issue. There are no instructions for that (at least that
I could find), so was that the correct thing to do? If so, is there anything I
need to know as to how tight, etc., to turn these small allen screws? Is there a
third under the adjuster knob assembly that I should adjust as well(I couldn't
see one).

Thanks,
Gerald



------------------------------------

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see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gtoYahoo! Groups Links












Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Gerald Miller
 

I was attempting to use the Tripplite USB/Serial converter as recommended by AP on their website.

Wanting to be sure it would work I bought the device from AP based on that recommendation. No such luck.

Actually, the much cheaper Chinese made Startech USB/Serial converter works without any issues whatsoever. And both use the same chip and drivers.

Maybe I just have a bad unit. I have contacted support for Tripplite but haven't heard a word back other than they are looking into it about a a month ago. I am not giving up on it just yet.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Erickson" <christopher.k.erickson@...> wrote:

Your problem isn't with the conversion of serial to USB.

Your problem is most likely with investing in box-store Chinese brand-X to
perform the conversion.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com



-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
gmillerok
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:36 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy
6)

Apparently, there are quite a few other folks that don't have a problem with
USB. All of my other devices such as main camera, guider, and focuser all
are USB. The only device I have an issue is the one developed over 50 years
ago-the serial port on the AP mount.

I understand the idea that "if it aint' broke, don't fix it." But again, I
had to buy an expensive device to convert it to USB which AP recommends on
their site to use that didn't work, and I would say that is a bigger problem
than any issue in using USB-at least for me who is now $150 poorer and with
a device that doesn't work.

Yes, I undertand the stability of RS-232. It should be, it was developed
over 50 years ago.

But when most computers and laptops sold today no longer even have serial
ports, and you have to convert the serial to USB anyway, it seems like it
may be time to catch up to the 21st century, even if it is a step backward.
How about this-put both a USB AND a RS232 port on the controller. Then you'd
have the best(and worst) of both standards and could take your pick.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Steve Norvich" <snorvich@> wrote:

This is an absolutely wonderful post. It reinforces my decision with
regard
to the Astro-Physics GTO1600. I was never comfortable with the
competition
s USB oriented solution.

snorvich@
-------Original Message-------

From: Christopher Erickson
Date: 10/17/2012 3:19:59 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the
SKy 6)


<SNIP>
"Roland, are your new mounts going to stick with the old serial port
standard? I hope not."
<SNIP>

Careful what you wish for...

Points to consider:

* For better or worse, RS-232 Serial has been the defacto-standard
universal
denominator for decades and will likely continue to be so for decades to
come. With hardly an exception, very microcontroller made in the world
today has an RS-232 serial port cast right in its silicon. Whether you can
see them or not, RS-232 serial ports are EVERYWHERE. In fact all modern
"smart" refrigerators have hidden RS-232 serial ports that exist for the
service technicians armed with smart diagnostic tools. Even your car's
OBD-II or CANbus diagnostic interface has embedded RS-232-style serial
communications. Serial can be converted to just about anything (USB,
Ethernet, TCP/IP, Bluetooth, fiber-optic, Xbee wireless, etc.) USB can't
be
converted to anything without an intervening pair of computers and the
right
software on both ends, which usually doesn't exist. Not to mention the
expenses involved.

* RS-232 Serial can be run great distances (even thousands of kilometers)
using a great number of inexpensive media types and converters. USB can
barely make it across the average room without brain-splitting problems.

* Probably 90% of all problems with USB-Serial adapters are
driver-software
related. Just about everything coming out of China has Chinese-written
drivers and these have always been incomplete and highly-problematic. In
my
experience, the best and most trouble-free adapters use FTDI chips.
Prolific is a distant second place and everything else is almost complete
junk for any but the most basic of applications.

* For years, iOptron has offered GOTO mounts with USB interfaces instead
of
serial interfaces and the unending grief experienced by their users
related
to USB problems is infamous. In fact iOptron's most recent GOTO mounts
have
gone back to serial interfaces! Good news for people with iOptron mounts
with USB interfaces is that all iOptron did was incorporate a Chinese
USB-to-Serial chip into the mount and the iOptron microcontroller has a
serial interface on it! Cutting two traces and installing a connector has
allowed users to bypass iOptron's junky serial-to-USB adapter chip and
it's
horrible drivers.

* Having a serial interface on my mounts means I can easily control them
with a PC, wired/wireless smartphone or tablet computer. If it only had
USB, that usually eliminates the smartphone and tablet computer. SkyFi has
a wireless USB adapter (expensive) coming out that may work with some
USB-only iOptron mounts but they are already warning people that it is a
"work in progress."

* USB 1 is obsolete. USB 2 is officially obsolete. USB 3 is current but
USB 4 is right around the corner. Most USB 3 ports these days don't
support
USB 1 peripherals. USB 4 ports are unlikely to support USB 1 or 2
peripherals. Why would I want to spend $10-20,000 for a premium mount with
an interface that will be obsolete and unsupported in about five years?

Like I said, be careful what you wish for.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



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Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question

Howard Hedlund
 

Hi guys,

Sorry! I got a bit behind in my post reading. Anyway, you were correct to tighten up the set screws a bit. These screws each push on a hard little ball to take up the tiny bit of slack that is required in order for us to assemble the parts. Tighten ONLY enough to remove the slack! Also, tighten each of the screws equally, going back and forth between them a small bit at a time.

Mag. 7 Skies!

Howard Hedlund
Astro-Physics, Inc.
Phone: 815-282-1513
www.astro-physics.com<http://www.astro-physics.com/>
Please include this e-mail with your response.

P Consider the environment before printing this e-mail.


From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of John Gaul
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:29 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question



Gerald,

Thanks for posting your experience. I have exactly the same "squelch" thing with my 2011 Mach1 - you describe it well. I saw the screws, but didn't try tightening them up, for fear of straining something. Now I might try it some time, gently.

Best regards

John

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@...<mailto:grmok1@...>> wrote:

Thanks, just wanted to be sure.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, chris1011@ wrote:


Sounds like you fixed the problem.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: gmillerok <grmok1@>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>>
Sent: Wed, Oct 17, 2012 5:39 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach1GTO rotating Azimuth question


Howard, Roland, or anyone at AP, I was wondering if you could comment on my
post? Thanks.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>, "gmillerok" <grmok1@> wrote:

I noticed that there was some "slop" after reassembling my mount on my
permenant pier when I would push/pull on the counterweight bar lighly when the
scope was in Park 1 position. I could hear something that sounded like grease
sticking and unsticking if that makes sense, and could see the rotating azimuth
moving vertically and seemed a bit loose under the mount. I noticed that there
were two small allen screws on the east and west side, and I tightened them and
that seemed to fix the issue. There are no instructions for that (at least that
I could find), so was that the correct thing to do? If so, is there anything I
need to know as to how tight, etc., to turn these small allen screws? Is there a
third under the adjuster knob assembly that I should adjust as well(I couldn't
see one).

Thanks,
Gerald



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Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

pgwsteve
 

I bought the USB to 4 port serial converter from AP and installed it into my obs. I would have random BSOD occurrences that would really mess up an imaging session. It got to a point where I could no longer make it through an evening so I had to investigate the issue in depth with the help of the IT guy I employ. Using a special viewer to look at the dump file related to the crash, a driver related to the event kept showing up, WDS84 or something IIRC, I could check if needed.

I verified it was the Tripplite driver and filled out a tech support request on their site. Needless to say I spoke to a tech and they stated that Windows 7 wasn't supported, and it was unlikely it would be. By the end if the day I had a 2 port RS232 card installed and no BSOD since.

I agree with the uselessness of USB for all applications other than picture download. The Ethernet port on some SBIG cameras is interesting.

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Erickson" <christopher.k.erickson@...> wrote:

USB appears to be simple to the user but is incredibly-complex to the
developer. RS-232 is simple for developers, especially since it is
built-into just about all microcontrollers.

When the data-rate is low, RS-232 is the fastest, cheapest and most
reliable interface to implement in microcontroller-based devices.

All of the USB-to-Serial problems I have ever investigated to date have
been related to brand-X adapters, their junky drivers or because the
user installed the wrong drivers for his/her particular OS.

I hope this helps.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com



-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Pete Su
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:50 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the
SKy 6)

I could get behind Ethernet.

I find the fascination with RS232 in astronomy circles to be puzzling.
While there are certainly reasons that embedded industrial control
applications still use them (super simple device interfaces) this is
not what we are doing with telescope mounts. Telescope mounts (and
cameras, and all the other devices) use the serial line to send
commands to the mount controller which are then translated into lower
level signal to the motors or whatnot. The only rational reason I can
see to prefer RS232 for this above anything else is cable length, but
even that's a red herring IMHO. Ethernet cable runs can be just as
long and what "everyone" ends up doing anyway is to remote control the
mount using a second computer and TCP/IP, which doesn't even need a
wire.

So yeah, ethernet. It's almost as old as RS-232 anyway (invented in
the 70s, vs. the 60s).

Pete


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Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

Christopher Erickson
 

Having a serial-to-USB adapter on the inside versus the outside may
make some consumers feel better but it would really be a disadvantage
and disservice to the consumer. Whether they realize it or not.

Both Meade and iOptron have come out with scopes with USB interfaces
(USB-to-Serial adapter chips on the inside) and they have been
nothing but endless headaches for their owners. Both iOptron and
Meade have switched back to serial for their latest model releases.

I hope this helps.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com

-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
George
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:54 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

Really you guys. Let's be honest here. Any new designs should use USB. It is
the industry standard for plug-and-play communications (has been for quite a
while). Many computers, mostly laptops, do not have serial ports any more
for good reason - nothing new uses it. Adapters are troublesome.

I am surprised if the AP1600 or 3600 does not use USB.

George



--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" <groups1@...> wrote:

Hi Gerald,

I bought a new Win7 Asus high end laptop dedicated solely for imaging. I
know of no current laptop that comes
with a dedicated serial port. Mine didn't. These new laptops replace the
desktop pretty much these days,
particularly in the field.
Laptops with serial ports still exist. For instance, some of the Panasonic
Toughboooks still have a serial port which
might have been a better choice than your Asus for outdoor environments -
I wouldn't want to use my high-end 17"
Alienware outdoors.

Also, many of the Dell laptops have docking stations with COM ports.
Probably other manufacturers have docking stations.

-Ray Gralak
Author of Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC)
Author of PEMPro: http://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: http://www.gralak.com/apdriver
Author of PulseGuide: http://www.pulseguide.com
Author of Sigma: http://www.gralak.com/sigma


-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
Of gmillerok
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 10:59 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6




Ray,

I bought a new Win7 Asus high end laptop dedicated solely for imaging. I
know of no current laptop that comes
with a dedicated serial port. Mine didn't. These new laptops replace the
desktop pretty much these days,
particularly in the field.

Gerald
--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> , "Ray
Gralak" <groups1@> wrote:

Hi Gerald,

since no laptops or PC's have no serial ports.
Actually there are some desktop computers that still come with serial
ports built in (e.g. some of the Dell
Optiplex and
Precision desktops).

If you are using a desktop without a serial port the best solution is
a 2-port PCI and PCI-express card. They run
from
$10-40 usually and are much more robust than the USB/serial adapters.
You can find them at Newegg or
Amazon.

-Ray Gralak
Author of Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC)
Author of PEMPro: http://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver:
http://www.gralak.com/apdriver
Author of PulseGuide: http://www.pulseguide.com
Author of Sigma: http://www.gralak.com/sigma


-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>
[mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> ] On Behalf Of gmillerok
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 8:02 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6



Reboot the computer and don't let it go to sleep while connected.
Change it under Power settings so it won't
ever go
to sleep or hibernate if you want to avoid such problems. How it's
set up with the mount is not relevent.

Roland, are your new mounts going to stick with the old serial port
standard? I hope not.

I also have had issues with serial connections-mainly related to
using USB to Serial converters that are now
required
since no laptops or PC's have no serial ports. I bought a 4-port
$150 Tripplite USB-Serial converter from AP to
use
with the Icron Ranger (both bought because AP recommends them to
work on the AP site). It does not work
with the
Icron and neither Icron or Tripplite can tell me why after hours are
trying to get it to work. So now I have a
$150
paperweight.

Fortunately, a Startech USB-Serial 4-port works with the Icron
without issue.

Gerald

--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com <mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>
<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com>
, chris1011@ wrote:


You DO NOT need to set the keypad to EXT in order to use an
external planetarium program!!! Please read
the
manual.

1) set the keypad to Autostart YES
2) start your mount by turning on 12 volt power
3) Connect TheSky6 using Astro-Physics mount and your serial cable
4) In the Sky6 press "Link > Establish"

That is all you need to do!
You do not need to do anything else in order to control your mount
fully from your planetarium program.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: dan j <danjanos@>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
<mailto:ap-gto%40yahoogroups.com> <mailto:ap-
gto%40yahoogroups.com> >
Sent: Tue, Oct 16, 2012 8:24 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6


Hi Everyone,
I upgraded my computer to a Windows 7 platform and reinstalled all
the
software. But I am having a problem connecting my Parallax hd150c
with AP GTO
electronics. The keypad is set to "ext", using com port 4 set to
9600 bps here
is the error message I get from the SKY 6.
"Astro-Physics GTO not responding. Please check communications
port
settings,powers and connections to the control the system".
Now here is the crazy part. I had the system working before dinner
doing test
slews through the SKY 6! The computer went into sleep mode and
after wakening
the computer up the problem started. ugh!!
Any help would be appreciated.
dan



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Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Christopher Erickson
 

USB appears to be simple to the user but is incredibly-complex to the
developer. RS-232 is simple for developers, especially since it is
built-into just about all microcontrollers.

When the data-rate is low, RS-232 is the fastest, cheapest and most
reliable interface to implement in microcontroller-based devices.

All of the USB-to-Serial problems I have ever investigated to date have
been related to brand-X adapters, their junky drivers or because the
user installed the wrong drivers for his/her particular OS.

I hope this helps.

Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com

-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Pete Su
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 12:50 PM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the
SKy 6)

I could get behind Ethernet.

I find the fascination with RS232 in astronomy circles to be puzzling.
While there are certainly reasons that embedded industrial control
applications still use them (super simple device interfaces) this is
not what we are doing with telescope mounts. Telescope mounts (and
cameras, and all the other devices) use the serial line to send
commands to the mount controller which are then translated into lower
level signal to the motors or whatnot. The only rational reason I can
see to prefer RS232 for this above anything else is cable length, but
even that's a red herring IMHO. Ethernet cable runs can be just as
long and what "everyone" ends up doing anyway is to remote control the
mount using a second computer and TCP/IP, which doesn't even need a
wire.

So yeah, ethernet. It's almost as old as RS-232 anyway (invented in
the 70s, vs. the 60s).

Pete


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Version: 2013.0.2740 / Virus Database: 2614/5832 - Release Date: 10/14/12


Re: SERIAL PORTS (was: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6)

Zak Foreman
 

I'd love to hear more peoples experience using the combination of the Icron Ranger and the Tripplite Keyspan (4 port in my case). I assume Geralds problems are the exception rather than the rule?

I was hoping to use these to remote control the 1600 and cameras/accessories, especially during the cooler months (reached -18C some nights last winter, a bit too chilly for my liking!).

I would be using a Dell XPS / Win7 64 bit laptop.

Thanks!

Zak


Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

Christopher Erickson
 

It's not about serial-USB conversion, it's not the OS and it's not about the
planetarium software.

It's all about the adapter's driver software and the authors who did a fast
job instead of a good job.

If everyone who is having troubles with serial-to-USB adapters were to
switch to adapters using FTDI chips and drivers, their serial adapter
problems would go away.

Stop buying the junk from the box stores and gas stations.

Get this and then install the correct drivers for it and your particular OS:

http://www.parallax.com/StoreSearchResults/tabid/768/txtSearch/ftdi/List/0/S
ortField/4/ProductID/378/Default.aspx


Christopher Erickson
Consulting Engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com

-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
tucstargzr
Sent: Wednesday, October 17, 2012 11:35 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: cannot connect gto CP3 to the SKy 6

I'll also note that current generation MOBOs still have a Serial Connector.
The correct Connector/Cable/Back plate is easy to find for 10 bucks.

Maybe it's me, but using a 64 bit Win7 OS I have issues getting the Serial
Port to work with my planetarium (ECU). Life is too short to bang my head
against the wall so I'm running a 32 bit version.

Tom



--- In ap-gto@yahoogroups.com, "Ray Gralak" <groups1@...> wrote:

Hi Gerald,

since no laptops or PC's have no serial ports.
Actually there are some desktop computers that still come with serial
ports built in (e.g. some of the Dell Optiplex and
Precision desktops).

If you are using a desktop without a serial port the best solution is a
2-port PCI and PCI-express card. They run from
$10-40 usually and are much more robust than the USB/serial adapters. You
can find them at Newegg or Amazon.

-Ray Gralak
Author of Astro-Physics Command Center (APCC)
Author of PEMPro: http://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: http://www.gralak.com/apdriver
Author of PulseGuide: http://www.pulseguide.com
Author of Sigma: http://www.gralak.com/sigma



------------------------------------

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-----
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Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
Version: 2013.0.2740 / Virus Database: 2614/5832 - Release Date: 10/14/12