Date   

Re: Mach 1 Counterweight Hole

George
 

Bryan,

 

You can insert a Phillips screwdriver in the Tommy bar hole and use it for leverage to loosen the shaft adapter (there are no lock screws).   However, my question is why are you removing it?   Nothing inside needs cleaned.     Use a soft cloth and Windex to clean the surface of the mount.

 

Regards,

 

George

 

George Whitney

Astro-Physics, Inc.

Phone:  815-222-6538 (direct line)

Phone:  815-282-1513 (office)

Email:  george@...

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bryan R.
Sent: Thursday, April 8, 2021 7:20 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Mach 1 Counterweight Hole

 

Hello all.  Just joined, 1st post.  So I just purchased a second hand Mach 1.  It was well loved, and that's a good thing btw, but I am trying to disassemble the mount 8n a feasible manner so I can get all the dirt, grime, etc out of it.  I just ordered a grease kit, so I will be going through that evolution as well.  My question is on potential removal of the piece which accepts the CW shaft.  It appears as though it should be removable, but I can't seem to get it to budge.  Is it indeed removable, and if so is there a retention screw somewhere that is locking it in place?  I didn't souse down on it too much for fear of damaging something, but it is not moving.  Any guidance would be appreciated very much.

Bryan


Mach 1 Counterweight Hole

Bryan R.
 

Hello all.  Just joined, 1st post.  So I just purchased a second hand Mach 1.  It was well loved, and that's a good thing btw, but I am trying to disassemble the mount 8n a feasible manner so I can get all the dirt, grime, etc out of it.  I just ordered a grease kit, so I will be going through that evolution as well.  My question is on potential removal of the piece which accepts the CW shaft.  It appears as though it should be removable, but I can't seem to get it to budge.  Is it indeed removable, and if so is there a retention screw somewhere that is locking it in place?  I didn't souse down on it too much for fear of damaging something, but it is not moving.  Any guidance would be appreciated very much.

Bryan


Re: APCC / APPM Frustration

mjb87@...
 

Thanks. I'll try again in the daytime today just to see if I can get the connections to work.


Re: APCC / APPM Frustration

Ray Gralak
 

If you already have virtual ports defined, then you don't need to do that step.

After clicking the "Now" button you will see three popups in a row. Unchecking the "Keep on top" checkbox in APCC will prevent those popups from being hidden behind APCC.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of mjb87 via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 7:46 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] APCC / APPM Frustration

Thanks, Ray. Some follow-up questions

1. You say define and create the virtual ports. I have the "create virtual ports first" box checked and the ports are
there so I don't know what else needs to be done. And are the define and create two separate steps? I only see a
"create" choice on the virtual ports tab. I have always checked the "Create virtual ports first" box.

2. I did try clicking the define "now" button, several times. It just reported that the driver was defined -- there were no
windows to approve. And I still got the same error starting APPM.

3. The three boxes you say should be checked are exactly the ones that were checked when I started.

What I don't understand is why the system says I need to create the virtual ports when they HAVE been created. I
repeatedly restarted the computer and ONLY started up APCC -- no other applications -- and I still had the
challenge.

Marty


Re: APCC / APPM Frustration

Bill Long
 

If the create button is there, click it. It should create a virtual port. Then use the APCC button to configure the V2 driver, then connect it. Does it work now?



From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of mjb87 via groups.io <mjb87@...>
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 7:46 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] APCC / APPM Frustration
 
Thanks, Ray.  Some follow-up questions

1. You say define and create the virtual ports.  I have the "create virtual ports first" box checked and the ports are there so I don't know what else needs to be done.  And are the define and create two separate steps?  I only see a "create" choice on the virtual ports tab. I have always checked the "Create virtual ports first" box.

2. I did try clicking the define "now" button, several times. It just reported that the driver was defined -- there were no windows to approve. And I still got the same error starting APPM.

3. The three boxes you say should be checked are exactly the ones that were checked when I started.

What I don't understand is why the system says I need to create the virtual ports when they HAVE been created. I repeatedly restarted the computer and ONLY started up APCC -- no other applications -- and I still had the challenge.

Marty


Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

Dale Ghent
 

In reality the minimum possible time for a GPS cold start is 12.5 minutes, but this is under optimal conditions where the receiver has a full view of the sky down to the horizon. Without that full view and with some sat signals being blocked or reflected by structures or other objects, accumulating the constellation almanac will take longer.  This period of time is referred to as Time To First Fix.

On Apr 7, 2021, at 10:43 PM, Woody Schlom <woody_is@...> wrote:



Christopher,

 

Thanks for that insight on GPS clock accuracy.  I realized it took several minutes for greatest geographical accuracy (often called 3D by GPS makers), but didn’t realize that the clock accuracy could take as long as 20 minutes.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Christopher Erickson
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 7:13 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

 

Only FWIW, SharpCap can access the GPS chip in my QHY174M-GPS cams and sync the PC clock to them.

 

I always run GPS's for at least 20 minutes on-sky before I attempt to sync a PC to them before I capture an occultation. I have seen GPS time being up to 20 seconds off from a GPS until they get a full ephemeris update from the satellites.

 

I hope this helps.


-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com
   

 

On Wed, Apr 7, 2021, 3:50 PM Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:


Ugh. Windows' built-in time client has been a pain to deal with and performed sadly only until recently, and even still it requires some tweaks in order to keep host clock drift reasonably in check. One of the time server vendors I've used in the past has a decent series of KB articles regarding this:

https://kb.meinbergglobal.com/kb/time_sync/timekeeping_on_windows/accurate_time_in_windows

As for using a GPS to sync the signal timecode to the host, I do this now using a $15 USB GPS dongle from Amazon and the NMEATime2 app from VisualGPS: http://visualgps.net/#nmeatime2-content

NMEATime2 does it right, including calibrating for the delay between the signal being emitted, received, and working its way through the OS to the app. This delay calibration is key for any app that's used to keep time with any signal source and why you can't just read the GPS sentences as they come off the serial port and write that time to the OS clock. It's pretty good for $20 and change, and a total solution for under $40 if you include the cost of any USB GPS dongle.

/dale


> On Apr 7, 2021, at 21:08, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:
>
> Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection.  APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time.  This doesn’t require a new feature.
>
>
>
> The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver.  I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet.  Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.
>
>
>
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
> Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time
>
>
>
> Hello All,
>
> There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
> I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
> Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.
>
> The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)
>
> My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.
>
> Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)
>
> Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.
>
> Cheers,
> Gert
>
>
>






Re: APCC / APPM Frustration

mjb87@...
 

Thanks, Ray.  Some follow-up questions

1. You say define and create the virtual ports.  I have the "create virtual ports first" box checked and the ports are there so I don't know what else needs to be done.  And are the define and create two separate steps?  I only see a "create" choice on the virtual ports tab. I have always checked the "Create virtual ports first" box.

2. I did try clicking the define "now" button, several times. It just reported that the driver was defined -- there were no windows to approve. And I still got the same error starting APPM.

3. The three boxes you say should be checked are exactly the ones that were checked when I started.

What I don't understand is why the system says I need to create the virtual ports when they HAVE been created. I repeatedly restarted the computer and ONLY started up APCC -- no other applications -- and I still had the challenge.

Marty


Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

Woody Schlom
 

Christopher,

 

Thanks for that insight on GPS clock accuracy.  I realized it took several minutes for greatest geographical accuracy (often called 3D by GPS makers), but didn’t realize that the clock accuracy could take as long as 20 minutes.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of Christopher Erickson
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 7:13 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

 

Only FWIW, SharpCap can access the GPS chip in my QHY174M-GPS cams and sync the PC clock to them.

 

I always run GPS's for at least 20 minutes on-sky before I attempt to sync a PC to them before I capture an occultation. I have seen GPS time being up to 20 seconds off from a GPS until they get a full ephemeris update from the satellites.

 

I hope this helps.


-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com
   

 

On Wed, Apr 7, 2021, 3:50 PM Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:


Ugh. Windows' built-in time client has been a pain to deal with and performed sadly only until recently, and even still it requires some tweaks in order to keep host clock drift reasonably in check. One of the time server vendors I've used in the past has a decent series of KB articles regarding this:

https://kb.meinbergglobal.com/kb/time_sync/timekeeping_on_windows/accurate_time_in_windows

As for using a GPS to sync the signal timecode to the host, I do this now using a $15 USB GPS dongle from Amazon and the NMEATime2 app from VisualGPS: http://visualgps.net/#nmeatime2-content

NMEATime2 does it right, including calibrating for the delay between the signal being emitted, received, and working its way through the OS to the app. This delay calibration is key for any app that's used to keep time with any signal source and why you can't just read the GPS sentences as they come off the serial port and write that time to the OS clock. It's pretty good for $20 and change, and a total solution for under $40 if you include the cost of any USB GPS dongle.

/dale


> On Apr 7, 2021, at 21:08, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:
>
> Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection.  APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time.  This doesn’t require a new feature.
>
>
>
> The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver.  I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet.  Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.
>
>
>
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
> Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time
>
>
>
> Hello All,
>
> There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
> I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
> Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.
>
> The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)
>
> My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.
>
> Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)
>
> Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.
>
> Cheers,
> Gert
>
>
>






Re: APCC / APPM Frustration

Ray Gralak
 

Hi Marty,

 

You are probably overcomplicating things. There is an option to auto-configure the driver in APCC. There is also a button in APCC to do a one-time configuration of the ASCOM driver.

 

To simplify things, always start APCC first and connect to the mount, then connect your other applications.

 

Now, to fix your problem:

 

1. With just APCC connected to the mount (no AP V2 ASCOM driver), define Virtual ports 1 and 2 and connect to them on the Virtual Ports tab.

2. Click the tiny "Now" button in APCC's "AP V2 Driver" Group box. This will configure the AP V2 ASCOM driver. There will be several pop-up windows to which you will need to click "OK". Afterwards the AP V2 driver will be configured correctly.

3. For future sessions enable the three checkboxes in this screen shot:

 

 

After doing this the driver and APCC will be configured correctly for use with APPM.

 

-Ray

 

> -----Original Message-----

> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of mjb87 via groups.io

> Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 5:54 PM

> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io

> Subject: [ap-gto] APCC / APPM Frustration

>

> [Edited Message Follows]

>

> I am trying to get APPM to work with my 1100 mount. For reference, I have had success it getting it to work (different

> software installation, different computer) with my Mach2 mount. There must be something wrong with my sequence

> and setup.

>

> First, I start APCC and connect successfully (via IP) to the mount. Note that I have the "create virtual ports first" box

> checked and two ports get created.

> Second, I start APPM and try to connect to the mount. I get an error message telling me to start APCC (it WAS

> started) and connect the driver through APCC. Fine.

>

>

>

>

> When I go back to APCC and try to connect to the AP V2 driver, I get this error telling me to create the virtual ports

> first.

>

>

>

> But the virtual ports ARE created. In any case, I tried about 20 times to delete the virtual ports and then recreate

> them -- all without success in starting APPM. I restarted the computer several times as well. No success.

>

> What am I doing wrong? The sky was perfect for running APPM and now I have rain in the forecast.

>

> Marty


Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

Dale Ghent
 

Yep. 

The hows and whys are covered by the NMEATime author here:


On Apr 7, 2021, at 10:13 PM, Christopher Erickson <christopher.k.erickson@...> wrote:


Only FWIW, SharpCap can access the GPS chip in my QHY174M-GPS cams and sync the PC clock to them.

I always run GPS's for at least 20 minutes on-sky before I attempt to sync a PC to them before I capture an occultation. I have seen GPS time being up to 20 seconds off from a GPS until they get a full ephemeris update from the satellites.

I hope this helps.

-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com
   

On Wed, Apr 7, 2021, 3:50 PM Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:

Ugh. Windows' built-in time client has been a pain to deal with and performed sadly only until recently, and even still it requires some tweaks in order to keep host clock drift reasonably in check. One of the time server vendors I've used in the past has a decent series of KB articles regarding this:

https://kb.meinbergglobal.com/kb/time_sync/timekeeping_on_windows/accurate_time_in_windows

As for using a GPS to sync the signal timecode to the host, I do this now using a $15 USB GPS dongle from Amazon and the NMEATime2 app from VisualGPS: http://visualgps.net/#nmeatime2-content

NMEATime2 does it right, including calibrating for the delay between the signal being emitted, received, and working its way through the OS to the app. This delay calibration is key for any app that's used to keep time with any signal source and why you can't just read the GPS sentences as they come off the serial port and write that time to the OS clock. It's pretty good for $20 and change, and a total solution for under $40 if you include the cost of any USB GPS dongle.

/dale


> On Apr 7, 2021, at 21:08, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:
>
> Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection.  APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time.  This doesn’t require a new feature.
>
>
>
> The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver.  I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet.  Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.
>
>
>
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
> Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time
>
>
>
> Hello All,
>
> There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
> I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
> Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.
>
> The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)
>
> My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.
>
> Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)
>
> Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.
>
> Cheers,
> Gert
>
>
>







Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

Christopher Erickson
 

Only FWIW, SharpCap can access the GPS chip in my QHY174M-GPS cams and sync the PC clock to them.

I always run GPS's for at least 20 minutes on-sky before I attempt to sync a PC to them before I capture an occultation. I have seen GPS time being up to 20 seconds off from a GPS until they get a full ephemeris update from the satellites.

I hope this helps.

-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Waikoloa, HI 96738
www.summitkinetics.com
   


On Wed, Apr 7, 2021, 3:50 PM Dale Ghent <daleg@...> wrote:

Ugh. Windows' built-in time client has been a pain to deal with and performed sadly only until recently, and even still it requires some tweaks in order to keep host clock drift reasonably in check. One of the time server vendors I've used in the past has a decent series of KB articles regarding this:

https://kb.meinbergglobal.com/kb/time_sync/timekeeping_on_windows/accurate_time_in_windows

As for using a GPS to sync the signal timecode to the host, I do this now using a $15 USB GPS dongle from Amazon and the NMEATime2 app from VisualGPS: http://visualgps.net/#nmeatime2-content

NMEATime2 does it right, including calibrating for the delay between the signal being emitted, received, and working its way through the OS to the app. This delay calibration is key for any app that's used to keep time with any signal source and why you can't just read the GPS sentences as they come off the serial port and write that time to the OS clock. It's pretty good for $20 and change, and a total solution for under $40 if you include the cost of any USB GPS dongle.

/dale


> On Apr 7, 2021, at 21:08, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:
>
> Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection.  APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time.  This doesn’t require a new feature.
>
>
>
> The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver.  I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet.  Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.
>
>
>
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
> Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time
>
>
>
> Hello All,
>
> There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
> I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
> Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.
>
> The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)
>
> My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.
>
> Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)
>
> Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.
>
> Cheers,
> Gert
>
>
>







Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

Dale Ghent
 

Ugh. Windows' built-in time client has been a pain to deal with and performed sadly only until recently, and even still it requires some tweaks in order to keep host clock drift reasonably in check. One of the time server vendors I've used in the past has a decent series of KB articles regarding this:

https://kb.meinbergglobal.com/kb/time_sync/timekeeping_on_windows/accurate_time_in_windows

As for using a GPS to sync the signal timecode to the host, I do this now using a $15 USB GPS dongle from Amazon and the NMEATime2 app from VisualGPS: http://visualgps.net/#nmeatime2-content

NMEATime2 does it right, including calibrating for the delay between the signal being emitted, received, and working its way through the OS to the app. This delay calibration is key for any app that's used to keep time with any signal source and why you can't just read the GPS sentences as they come off the serial port and write that time to the OS clock. It's pretty good for $20 and change, and a total solution for under $40 if you include the cost of any USB GPS dongle.

/dale

On Apr 7, 2021, at 21:08, W Hilmo <y.groups@hilmo.net> wrote:

Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection. APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time. This doesn’t require a new feature.



The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver. I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet. Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.



From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time



Hello All,

There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.

The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)

My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.

Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)

Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.

Cheers,
Gert



Re: About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

W Hilmo
 

Your computer should be able to sync time with NIST, as long as you have an internet connection.  APCC can then update the mount’s time with the computer’s time.  This doesn’t require a new feature.

 

The new feature that I would like to see is for APCC to have an option to update the computer time from a GPS receiver.  I do a fair amount of imaging from sites with no internet.  Right now, I have a 3rd party piece of software that I use to sync the computer clock from the GPS, but it would be nice to have an option to do this right from APCC.

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of drgert1 via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:02 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

 

Hello All,

There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.

The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)

My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.

Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)

Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.

Cheers,
Gert


APCC / APPM Frustration

mjb87@...
 
Edited

I am trying to get APPM to work with my 1100 mount. For reference, I have had success it getting it to work (different software installation, different computer) with my Mach2 mount. There must be something wrong with my sequence and setup.

First, I start APCC and connect successfully (via IP) to the mount. Note that I have the "create virtual ports first" box checked and two ports get created.
Second, I start APPM and try to connect to the mount. I get an error message telling me to start APCC (it WAS started) and connect the driver through APCC. Fine.




When I go back to APCC and try to connect to the AP V2 driver, I get this error telling me to create the virtual ports first.



But the virtual ports ARE created. In any case, I tried about 20 times to delete the virtual ports and then recreate them -- all without success in starting APPM. I restarted the computer several times as well. No success.

What am I doing wrong? The sky was perfect for running APPM and now I have rain in the forecast.

Marty


About APCC and ISS tracking and PC Time

drgert1
 

Hello All,

There was a nice ISS pass yesterday. I tried to follow it with APCC horizon utility.
I see the PC time as the most tricky parameter. In my case the mount was trailing the ISS by a bit.
Obviously my PC time wasn't spot-on. Now for folks like me who are getting forgetful maybe it's an opportunity for Ray to put some automated NIST time sync into APCC just as a helpful measure. Maybe with a little popup 'OK' button.

The tracking feature is just great. I like the way it is organized sending the custom tracking speeds to the mount (which you can see in the driver UI)

My one improvement request would be to have the hand controller buttons 'N E S W' able to overlay the motion of the tracking. When I pushed the buttons during the ISS flyover the mount moved but 'something was fighting' the motion and pushed the ISS back to the edge of the field of view.

Maybe even have an option for a USB joystick to control the mount motion. (This would be even a cool thing outside off ISS tracking) :-)

Of course a great shout-out to Ray for the excellent work.

Cheers,
Gert


Re: Mach2 Slew Speed, Power, and Voltage Question #Mach2GTO

Greg McCall
 

Rolando,
You don't charge a 24v battery at 24v.
Just checking one battery spec at https://enerdrive.com.au/product/epower-b-tec-24v-100ah-lithium-battery/
It can be 28.8v-29.2v for charging and 27-27.6v as a float voltage 
(that's for a lithium battery, specifically, LiFePO4 often used in astro setups, camping, RV industry)
24v is a nominal voltage with the operating range being 22v to 29v 
While I've not been given a specification for the allowed voltages, the discussion so far has indicated these voltages are not suitable for the Mach2

Contrary to what has been said in this message thread (and a similar thread), are saying I can use a 24v battery on the Mach2 while charging?
I just see no specification and now mixed messages.


Re: Mach2 - Elongated stars

M Hambrick
 

Hi Yanzhe

Regarding the possibility of vibration coming from the camera I have a SBIG STXL16200 camera and I have found that when the cooler output exceeds about 78% for a period of time, the camera fan kicks into a high speed mode. There is quite a lot of vibration when this happens, and I have seen it degrade my images. I am not sure if this is the root cause of your problem, but I suggest that you try one of the following:

  1. Run your cooler setpoint so that the cooler output does not exceed about 75% at steady state.
  2. If you are using MaxIm DL to image, you can switch the fan to manual mode so that it runs at a fixed speed. You can do this from the Expose Tab using the Options menu.
Mike


Re: Mach2 - Elongated stars

Roland Christen
 


One issue I am facing with Mach2 guiding is that I am not quite sure why my RA correction is mostly one direction. I can understand DEC correction in one direction due to polar alignment error, but RA should be random. Is this normal?
If your guiding is in one direction it simply means that you either have not perfect polar alignment or you are guiding in that part of the sky where the stars are moving slower than sidereal. This is caused by atmospheric refraction, and it is quite normal.

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: yanzhe liu <liuyanzhe@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Sat, Mar 27, 2021 11:51 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars

Rolando,

I am still digging into why my stars are elongated, currently I am focusing on collimation and possible fan noise. When I looked carefully into my old subs (with another mount), I got elongated stars too, but because the stars were larger (ie, guiding performance was not as good as Mach2) it looked rounder.

One issue I am facing with Mach2 guiding is that I am not quite sure why my RA correction is mostly one direction. I can understand DEC correction in one direction due to polar alignment error, but RA should be random. Is this normal?
Screen Shot 2021-03-27 at 9.48.16 PM.png

Yanzhe

On Fri, Mar 12, 2021 at 3:41 PM Bill Long <bill@...> wrote:
I did have my scope well-balanced in both axis. I guided it for a short while as a test for a 5 min sub (image below) then turned it off and went unguided and noticed the stars were of identical quality, so I went unguided for the evening instead.




From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of yanzhe liu <liuyanzhe@...>
Sent: Friday, March 12, 2021 2:41 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars
 
I have been using mach1 and 1100 prior to mach2. I knew I changed mount to mach2 in ascom driver.

Let me try again with balanced DEC, as suggested by Roland, to see if the issue is going away.  

On Thu, Mar 11, 2021 at 7:38 AM Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:
Yanzhe,

> I am able to run "AP Log Zipper", there are 2 files shown in the app: ap.ini and Setting.apdb, however both were dated
> 12/29/2018. Maybe I did not enable ASCOM log.

Hmmm... that is not the default. Did you happen to use this computer with another A-P mount in the past?

Since it is probably a small file, please attach that zip file to a post. It's worth checking the settings to see if anything stands out as an incorrect setting.

BTW, can you also provide a dropbox or google drive link to one of the single raw FITS images with the elongated stars? It's important that it is an unprocessed image and not a jpeg or stacked with other images.

Thanks,

-Ray

> -----Original Message-----
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of yanzhe liu
> Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2021 10:36 PM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars
>
> Ray,
>
> I am able to run "AP Log Zipper", there are 2 files shown in the app: ap.ini and Setting.apdb, however both were dated
> 12/29/2018. Maybe I did not enable ASCOM log.
>
> Yanzhe
>
> On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 7:37 PM Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:
>
>
>       Yanhze,
>
>       > Where is ASCOM driver log? I dont use APCC, I use SGPro.
>
>       The AP V2 ASCOM driver, which you must use with SGPro, comes with a log zipper utility called "AP Log
> Zipper". You should be able to find it from the Windows start menu by typing that name. The utility will grab the log files
> for X number of days in the past. If you can't find it, you probably didn't install it when you installed the AP V2 driver. In
> that case, just reinstall the AP V2 driver and select the option to install it.
>
>       BTW, you can use APCC with SGPro. In fact, it is recommended. An APCC Pro license comes with your
> Mach2 mount, but you must contact A-P to get it.
>
>       -Ray
>
>
>       > -----Original Message-----
>       > From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of yanzhe liu
>       > Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 4:19 PM
>       > To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
>       > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars
>       >
>       > Ray,
>       >
>       > Where is ASCOM driver log? I dont use APCC, I use SGPro.
>       >
>       > Yanzhe
>       >
>       > On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 10:45 AM Ray Gralak <iogroups@...> wrote:
>       >
>       >
>       >       Hi Yanzhe,
>       >
>       >       Can you zip and post your PHD2 logs, as well as APCC/AP V2 ASCOM driver logs?
>       >
>       >       There might be something useful there.
>       >
>       >       -Ray
>       >
>       >       > -----Original Message-----
>       >       > From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of yanzhe liu
>       >       > Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:12 AM
>       >       > To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
>       >       > Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars
>       >       >
>       >       > Roland,
>       >       >
>       >       > I will check my mount serial number later as I just packed everything due to rain forecast.
>       >       >
>       >       > My camera's orientation was 0/180 degree, so I assume top to bottom elongation would be DEC.
>       >       >
>       >       > I dont have any picture of my setup, I just tore it down since it will be rainy this week. My setup is
>       >       > FSQ106+OAG+16803, image scale is 3.5".
>       >       > I was imaging Rosetta Nebula, after it was just past meridian for 2-3 hours.
>       >       >
>       >       > I used PHD2 drift for PA, it reported <5' PA error, I am waiting for polemaster adapter so I can confirm I
> get
>       > good PA
>       >       > next time.
>       >       >
>       >       > DEC was out of balance because my setup was rear end heavy, if it was in balance position then I
> could
>       > not rotate
>       >       > my CCD in all directions. My guess is that the DEC balance was off by less than 1lb. In the next test, I
> can
>       > balance
>       >       > DEC to see if the issue still exists.
>       >       >
>       >       > My suspicion is that if DEC balance is off, then DEC might creep under gravity, even PA is perfect. So
> you
>       > might
>       >       > see DEC continually drift  then gets corrected by PHD2 periodically.
>       >       >
>       >       > Yanzhe
>       >       >
>       >       > On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 9:35 AM Roland Christen via groups.io <chris1011=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       Couple of questions:
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       1 - what's the mount's serial number
>       >       >       2 - which axis is the elongation
>       >       >       3 - which direction was the scope pointing (RA-Dec)
>       >       >       4 - what scope and focal length or what is the arc sec per pixel.
>       >       >       5 - do you have a picture of your setup?
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       One comment about balance - it should be easy for you to completely balance the scope with the
>       > clutches
>       >       > loose. Can you estimate how many lb out of balance your scope is in Dec? Normally i would not think
> this
>       > would
>       >       > have any effect, but doesn't hurt to check this.
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       Roland Christen
>       >       >       Astro-Physics Inc.
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       -----Original Message-----
>       >       >       From: yanzhe liu <liuyanzhe@...>
>       >       >       To: mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io
>       >       >       Sent: Sun, Mar 7, 2021 12:44 am
>       >       >       Subject: [ap-gto] Mach2 - Elongated stars
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >       Testing new mach2 for a couple of nights. It works great out of the box and I am very pleased.
>       >       >
>       >       >       One issue bothering me is that I got slightly elongated stars across the entire image (15min Ha sub).
>       >       >       The exact same telescope/CCD were used with another mount and stars were round, I am
> wondering
>       > what I
>       >       > should check (I think there was due to some setup issue, but I could not figure it out).
>       >       >       - Used OAG for guiding, so there should not be any flexure.
>       >       >       - CCD orientation was 0/180 degree. The stars were elongated top to bottom.
>       >       >       -  I did polar alignment with PHD2 drift align. PA error should be < 5'. The field rotation of each sub
> is
>       > ~0.01
>       >       > degree, much larger than the other system (but elongated stars do not look like field rotation, they were
>       > same
>       >       > across the image)
>       >       >       - Both RA and DEC guiding curves looked smooth, had similar RMS. DEC correction was mainly to
>       > one
>       >       > direction.
>       >       >       - DEC balance was slightly off, camera heavy. Is Mach2 DEC sensitive to this? Will the
> guiding/image
>       > be
>       >       > affected?
>       >       >
>       >       >       I dont think any of the above is of particular concern, except DEC balance. Any comment/help is
>       > appreciated.
>       >       >
>       >       >       --
>       >       >       Roland Christen
>       >       >       Astro-Physics
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>       >
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>







--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Mach2 Slew Speed, Power, and Voltage Question #Mach2GTO

Roland Christen
 


Having a 24v system and not allowing for use of a 24v off the shelf battery (with charging) seems to be a poor design.
Where did you get this idea? You certainly can use a 24 volt battery with charging to power the Mach2.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Greg McCall <emailgregnow@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Wed, Mar 31, 2021 8:22 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Slew Speed, Power, and Voltage Question #Mach2GTO

I was more hoping by now a more specific answer was available as I've never seen a manufacturer not have an actual specification for their equipment.
Having a 24v system and not allowing for use of a 24v off the shelf battery (with charging) seems to be a poor design.
12v or 24v are usually nominal voltage based historically on a car or truck battery systems. (with an appropriate voltage range for charging and discharging batteries)
Using a mixture of batteries to get close to the voltage is just not practical. 

--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Setting early flip in APCC

Wayne Hixson
 

I want to get an early meridian flip and I try to set it to +3. It keeps jumping right back to 0. I have Enable meridian limits checked. Also override ASCOM. I’ve tried different settings on the enable CW up E and W with no luck. I used to know how to do this...😳

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