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Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

rtlangland
 

Hi John,

I also have an AP 1100. I have two shafts because with a smaller scope I have to use the shorter shaft. Either way I purchased a zippered carrying case designed for a tripod . I don’t remember where I purchased it. However, it has some ties sewn into the back of the case to hold the shaft from moving around too much. They have a slight rubberized coating that kind of holds onto the shaft  It also has carrying straps and even a shoulder strap and this setup works fine for me. The one I bought also has a smaller zippered pouch on the  inside where I store the plastic cap on the shaft after the shaft is installed on the mount. It keeps it convenient so I don’t misplace it.

Hope this helps.

Bob Langland

On May 12, 2021, at 9:40 AM, Fritz K <fritztwo@...> wrote:

I have the 1100 shaft with extension.  I used to carry it in my counter weight box, but now that is too heavy for this old guy.
So I keep the shafts in a length of white plastic pluming pipe.  I added standard plastic screw on ends.
Inside there is rigid foam at the ends and a piece in between the two shafts.
It totally protects the shafts against all hazards, takes up little storage space, and aside from looking funny, works just fine.
clear skies,
fritz k


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

fernandorivera3
 

A long time ago, way back when traveling to star parties & favorite dark sky sites was a normal routine <clearly prior to being locked up & boarded up thanks to the pandemic> I used a metallic tool box [obviously must be long enough to allow the counterweight shaft to fit inside]. I put my couple of weights on the bottom of the toolbox. Then a thick towel above the stainless steel weights. Finally the shaft rests on top. 
So that's how I would do it if taking my 1200 GTO (instead of one of my dobs) far away for a few days of viewing. It is a heavy lift if picking up the toolbox loaded up, around 70 pounds or so 😳

Fernando


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

Fritz K
 

I have the 1100 shaft with extension.  I used to carry it in my counter weight box, but now that is too heavy for this old guy.
So I keep the shafts in a length of white plastic pluming pipe.  I added standard plastic screw on ends.
Inside there is rigid foam at the ends and a piece in between the two shafts.
It totally protects the shafts against all hazards, takes up little storage space, and aside from looking funny, works just fine.
clear skies,
fritz k


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

John A. Sillasen
 

Oh that is interesting.  Where did you find some with a large enough ID and how do you keep it from disintegrating into dust or getting pieces on the threads?  The original box got a but beat up over time.



John A. Sillasen



Re: APCC pro refraction modeling for nomad setup #Mach2GTO #APCC

Dale Ghent
 

On May 12, 2021, at 09:30, Ray Gralak <iogroups@siriusimaging.com> wrote:

That said, you would get more accurate tracking with a model. The model will compensate for polar alignment error, flexure, and orthogonality errors. Typically APPM can run through 2-3 points per minute which would allow you to create a 60 point model in less than 30 minutes.
To add to Ray's comment, you can do the modeling run during twilight, usually during nautical dusk. Plate solving doesn't require anything in the way of fidelity; only that a sufficient number of stars can be detected. Doing it then will avoid stepping on your actual imaging time which, I presume, would start during astronomical dusk at the earliest.

/dale


Re: APCC pro refraction modeling for nomad setup #Mach2GTO #APCC

Ray Gralak
 

Hi Andrea,

 

> From what I have understood, APCC can take into account refraction when using a model.

> I wonder if it is possible to create a "transparent model", whose only effect would be to

> calculate refraction based on latitude, temp, humidity and celestial coordinates.

 

Yes, you can do that, but it would not take long to create a small model. If you have a model from a previous night that may no longer be valid, you can uncheck all of the pointing terms except the refraction checkbox, like in this screenshot, which shows a tracking rate correction for refraction only:

 

 

That said, you would get more accurate tracking with a model. The model will compensate for polar alignment error, flexure, and orthogonality errors. Typically APPM can run through 2-3 points per minute which would allow you to create a 60 point model in less than 30 minutes.

 

-Ray

 

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

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

> Sent: Tuesday, May 11, 2021 3:25 PM

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

> Subject: [ap-gto] APCC pro refraction modeling for nomad setup #APCC #Mach2GTO

>

> Hi,

> I have a Mach2.

> From what I have understood, APCC can take into account refraction when using a model.

> I wonder if it is possible to create a "transparent model", whose only effect would be to calculate refraction based

> on latitude, temp, humidity and celestial coordinates.

>

> I have a nomad set up and prefer not to invest time in running a model, at least during summer when the night is

> very short .

> Thank you

> Andrea


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

M Hambrick
 

Hi John

I use the Ridgid toolboxes. I lined them with the high density closed cell polyethylene foam in layers. You will have to take out the existing internal dividers that come with the boxes to do this. The lid is lined with a solid piece of 2" thick foam. The bottom of the case has a 1" thick solid layer. On top if that is a 2" thick layer with cutouts for the counterweights and shaft. The 2" foam is perfect for the 18 lb counterweights. There is a 1" thick spacer in the cutout with the 10 lb counterweight. I glued the layers together using contact cement.

In one of the cases I have two 18 lb counterweights. In the other I have the shaft with an 18 lb, and a 10 lb counterweight. This is a more or less even distribution of the weight in each case.

I have a bad back, but if I use proper lifting techniques I can carry one case in each hand to the mount.

Mike


Re: APCC pro refraction modeling for nomad setup #Mach2GTO #APCC

Chris White
 

Interesting question.  I've been thinking about how useful the refraction based on temp and humidity actually is and whether it is worth in vesting in a THUM device or just running a model just based on the pointing matrix. 

FWIW- I know another user who sets up each night and if I remember correctly he runs an 80 to 120 point model all before it's dark enough to image.  So you could do the same as long as you arrive at your site with enough time to setup and get the model done before you would start imaging anyway. 


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

christian viladrich
 

I put the shaft inside a cylindrical piece of foam used for thermal isolation of water pipes.

Not optimal, but better than nothing.

Christian

Le 12/05/2021 à 06:54, Jeffc a écrit :
So how are people transporting their counterweight shafts?


(With the round tube inside)

On May 11, 2021, at 8:09 PM, John A. Sillasen <jasillasen@...> wrote:

Just wondering how other GTO owners with the larger thickness counterweight shafts are transporting them?
1200, 1100, 900 & Mach2 mounts all use the thicker style shaft. My Mach 1 has the thinner style. Why?  Pffft, a I'm only going to own one Astro-Physics mount, why would I need a thicker style shaft, right?  Then, the 1100GTO came home with me. Three scopes too but that's a whole different topic.

The Mach 1 counterweight shaft is safely stored in my ScopeGuard case.  Nice case, holds everything but weights.

But that big,  heavy toe crusher?  It was in my SKB case but no more.  I'd want to keep the threads safe - especially with Molybdenum disulfide on the threads for protection and reduce that counterweight dry shaft 'squeak.'

So how are people transporting their counterweight shafts?
I'd consider one of those Harbor Freight Apache cases but don't expect pluck foam to stand up to the weight.  Besides any of their cases would be too small or way too hig.

Thoughts anyone?  Case, soft bag?, towel?  How to protect it on a multi-day travel?

Thanks!

John 


Re: Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

Jeffc
 

So how are people transporting their counterweight shafts?


(With the round tube inside)

On May 11, 2021, at 8:09 PM, John A. Sillasen <jasillasen@...> wrote:

Just wondering how other GTO owners with the larger thickness counterweight shafts are transporting them?
1200, 1100, 900 & Mach2 mounts all use the thicker style shaft. My Mach 1 has the thinner style. Why?  Pffft, a I'm only going to own one Astro-Physics mount, why would I need a thicker style shaft, right?  Then, the 1100GTO came home with me. Three scopes too but that's a whole different topic.

The Mach 1 counterweight shaft is safely stored in my ScopeGuard case.  Nice case, holds everything but weights.

But that big,  heavy toe crusher?  It was in my SKB case but no more.  I'd want to keep the threads safe - especially with Molybdenum disulfide on the threads for protection and reduce that counterweight dry shaft 'squeak.'

So how are people transporting their counterweight shafts?
I'd consider one of those Harbor Freight Apache cases but don't expect pluck foam to stand up to the weight.  Besides any of their cases would be too small or way too hig.

Thoughts anyone?  Case, soft bag?, towel?  How to protect it on a multi-day travel?

Thanks!

John 


Losmandy/AP tripod question

michael mccann
 

Here’s what I’m trying to do. I have a Losmandy G11 and an AP 1600AEL. Normally in Fall/Winter/Spring my AP will be on a pier in an observatory. During the summer I’m toying with using a much smaller load and take my 1600 to nice dark site star parties instead of my G11. The Losmandy HD folding tripod is rated for 425lbs. I’m not planning on going over 175lbs including counterweight, mount, and scope setup. There is the adapter plate for 1100. I was thinking of removing the 1100 ring, adapt a plate for the 1600 ring base which would bolt onto the 1100 adapter plate. Is this ‘likely’ feasible since total weight is lower. What do I need to about the 1600GTO AEL center of gravity, or will centering the 1600 onto the 1100 adapter plate good enough.

Since I don’t have a machine shop equipment, does anyone already make an adapter like this?

Cheers

Mike


Counterweight Shaft Travel Storage

John A. Sillasen
 

Just wondering how other GTO owners with the larger thickness counterweight shafts are transporting them?
1200, 1100, 900 & Mach2 mounts all use the thicker style shaft. My Mach 1 has the thinner style. Why?  Pffft, a I'm only going to own one Astro-Physics mount, why would I need a thicker style shaft, right?  Then, the 1100GTO came home with me. Three scopes too but that's a whole different topic.

The Mach 1 counterweight shaft is safely stored in my ScopeGuard case.  Nice case, holds everything but weights.

But that big,  heavy toe crusher?  It was in my SKB case but no more.  I'd want to keep the threads safe - especially with Molybdenum disulfide on the threads for protection and reduce that counterweight dry shaft 'squeak.'

So how are people transporting their counterweight shafts?
I'd consider one of those Harbor Freight Apache cases but don't expect pluck foam to stand up to the weight.  Besides any of their cases would be too small or way too hig.

Thoughts anyone?  Case, soft bag?, towel?  How to protect it on a multi-day travel?

Thanks!

John 


Re: Strange guiding errors with AP1200

Roland Christen
 

Ok, great!

Rolando

-----Original Message-----
From: Allen Gilchrist via groups.io <gilchrist.allen@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Tue, May 11, 2021 9:40 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Strange guiding errors with AP1200

Rolando,
I think the gear cleaning and lubrication did the trick.  I figured out how to analyze the PHD2 guiding log.  The plot below shows that the cyclical spikes are gone.  The scales here are different from those posted earlier in this thread.  The earlier guiding data was based on 10 second guide exposures with the guider binned 1x1 while conditions were poorer for the more recent set of measurements based on 10 second guide exposures with the camera binned 2x2.  In any case, the periodic spikes are gone.  


--
Roland Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Strange guiding errors with AP1200

Allen Gilchrist
 

Rolando,
I think the gear cleaning and lubrication did the trick.  I figured out how to analyze the PHD2 guiding log.  The plot below shows that the cyclical spikes are gone.  The scales here are different from those posted earlier in this thread.  The earlier guiding data was based on 10 second guide exposures with the guider binned 1x1 while conditions were poorer for the more recent set of measurements based on 10 second guide exposures with the camera binned 2x2.  In any case, the periodic spikes are gone.  


Re: New 1100 GTO-CP4 Case Build

John A. Sillasen
 

I've learned that with the 8" extension added to both the Eagle Pier & the ATS8X48 Portable Pier, that I have set the legs to their lowest position.  Then if I lift the mount to a table then I can hold it close to the body and place or lift a bit or best ask for help to put it on the Flat Surface Adapter.  At our age, never travel alone.  Always travel with a buddy. It helps even to set up canopies (2), tables, cooking setups and then the Telescope equipment. Pier, then mount, then scope, (obviously,  right). 

We've gone so far as to get GMRS licenses and radios because CB radios aren't used much, FRS or 2 way radios don't have the range that GMRS radios have. They're even useful at a large star party! Hey, you need to see this setup, that kind of thing.

I don't have the room to use one of those hydraulic tables that Harley-Davison uses or I might have gone that way.  I have an electric trike to get around the fields easier.

John


Re: New 1100 GTO-CP4 Case Build

Jeffc
 

Yes.. very nice case.   I should look into this for the Mach2.

Fwiw I leave my 1100 assembled like that in the “case”. (Lowe’s tote bin) … this 1100 has a losmandy tripod adapter and FSA on the bottom so I only need to use 3 hand screws to mount it on the losmandy tripod.  That adapter unfortunately adds some weight.   I do remove the saddle / “dec plate” when stowing the mount.   

I suspect John could easily remove the saddle (two knob screws) when stowing the mount, then reattach the dec plate when it is in the case.  

The “lift” of the whole 1100 (sans dec plate) is (it feels) a little less than a 1200 RA axis and about the same as a 12” Meade SCT.  
I weighed the 12” SCT once — seemed to be about 40lbs.   Right at the limit for my ability.   Doable but requires thought planning and determination. 


On May 11, 2021, at 5:57 PM, M Hambrick <mhambrick563@...> wrote:

Hi John

That's a very nice case. The foam cutout job looks really good.

Out of curiosity, how do you manage the assembled 1100 mount ? I think that you are somewhere in the range of 45+ pounds for the assembled mount with a saddle plate attached.

Mike


Re: Mach2GTO - No Internal cable routing?

Jeffc
 

Where do you get those heat shrink sleeves for the powerpole terminals ?

Amazon has them.  

I think this is what you are looking for:

10pcs FR PVC Cover Flame Retardant Sleeve for ANDERSON Powerpole Connector Housing https://www.amazon.com/dp/B016U4CBUQ/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glt_fabc_2FW44DQAHM2D1V714SJ8?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

Fwiw I was buying pre-wired Powerpole “extension” cables then cutting them for my needs.    These cables came with the black covers.  They are not heat shrink… and can be slid back to reconfigure the connectors. 
 
(Some use cases have the red/black reversed, or the red “on top” of the black… one can just slide the black rubber thing back, un-slide the power poles, then slide them back together correctly.)

Here’s a couple other quick-ship Amazon sources for power poles which I’ve exploited:

1) I really needed 12v power distribution for the mount, “top of OTA”, and WiFi router so I went with a power pole distribution box … it turns out this came with a connector kit and the sleeves.

WINDCAMP AP-8 8port 40A Connector Power Splitter Distributor Source Compatible with Anderson Powerpole (AP-8) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01KBTF7C0/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glt_fabc_MGKRD51B234EE6FY3VJS?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

2) power extension cable — useful for running power to the “thru mount” connector (on the RA axis).   This will require reconfiguring the connectors which is trivial once you know how power pole red/black connectors are held together.  This cable is very nice , heavy gauge (it seems but I’ve not confirmed)… I probly won’t be cutting this up…

iGreely Extension Cable 10Ft/3M 10AWG Battery Charger Adapter 45A Connector for GZ Yeti /G500 Solar Generator Power Inverter and for Renogy,Boulder 200 Solar Panels https://www.amazon.com/dp/B088TB3X6M/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glt_fabc_NCYD2NKTN4BJYYAFWYY2?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

3) Same.. another brand… I got a couple of these and cut them to make splitters and one section went for the Pegasus power box with an XT60 soldered to the other end.  (Now showing Out of stock)

LIXIN 45A Battery Adapter Cable,... https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07XR7MMJZ?ref=ppx_pop_mob_ap_share

4) power-pole to 2.1.   I’m using this to power the WiFi router at the mount.   I also used it to power a QHY camera before the Pegasus showed up.   I believe this would also work with my CP3 based mounts …

Valley Enterprises 2.1mm x 5.5mm Right Angle DC Male Power Plug with Anderson Powerpole Connectors, 18 Gauge Wire, Length 6 Feet https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07GH8ZYJC/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glt_fabc_6DQ44Y09MP1EW4MNEQS5?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1


On May 11, 2021, at 6:12 PM, M Hambrick <mhambrick563@...> wrote:

Hi Jeffc

Where do you get those heat shrink sleeves for the powerpole terminals ?

Mike


Re: Mach2GTO - No Internal cable routing?

M Hambrick
 

Hi Jeffc

Where do you get those heat shrink sleeves for the powerpole terminals ?

Mike


Re: New 1100 GTO-CP4 Case Build

M Hambrick
 

Hi John

That's a very nice case. The foam cutout job looks really good.

Out of curiosity, how do you manage the assembled 1100 mount ? I think that you are somewhere in the range of 45+ pounds for the assembled mount with a saddle plate attached.

Mike


Re: Questions.....does wireless now work correctly with latest updates AND does your Sky Safari 6 Pro allow multiple Park positions now.

Howard Hedlund
 

I have been in contact with the the software developer assigned to work with us at Simulation Curriculum.   She has responded and is looking into the Mac OS issue.  This is not an issue with MacOS, nor an issue with GTOCPx Control Box Firmware.  It is probably a simple command off-by-one issue in Sky Safari due to the added Home command.  In her defense though, the developer was working somewhat blind with regard to the Mach2GTO.  The Mach2 is different from our other mounts, and she did not have one for testing.  

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