Date   

Re: Newbie questions

Howard Ritter
 

Thanks for your suggestions, Mike. 

As for leaving electronics out in the observatory in all weather, I wasn’t planning to do that. However, what I didn’t mention is that my “observatory” is going to be a heavy-duty, waterproof, aluminized shroud that will be snugged tightly around the pier. My HOA won’t allow me to put up a building, but it occurred to me that an unheated, non-air conditioned observatory building is in effect just a loose shroud, and that the scope and mount are tolerant of environmental temperatures; what’s important is protecting the scope from water, condensation, dust, and insect intrusion. Leaving a piece of fine electro-opto-mechanical gear outside under a tarp 24/7/365 is to say the least an unconventional idea, but I believe it stands up to close scrutiny. I put the question to my local club, and got positive replies. In fact, one of the members has had several scope installations outdoors and shrouded for years with no ill effects. We live in a quiet residential development outside the city, and the scope would be in a sheltered side yard that’s largely obscured from view from the street.

Howard

On Oct 25, 2021, at 9:10 AM, M Hambrick <mhambrick563@...> wrote:

Hi Howard

My two cents worth on your concrete pillar: I would go 2 ft deep with the 24-inch diameter hole. Try to get as much rebar in the pillar as possible, and I would not isolate the 24-inch diameter section from the 12-inch diameter section. Try to taper the bottom of the 12-inch diameter hole outwards to create an elephant's foot type of effect. Get the highest strength Sakrete they sell, and check to make sure that there are no temperature limitations (e.g. below freezing) on when you can pour it. Use as little water as possible when mixing it to minimize the chance that it will develop cracks. Soupy concrete due to too much water will crack when it cures. If you follow the mixing directions on the bag you should be OK. If you are mixing it by hand it may take a little more water than the instructions say, but go sparingly with additional water. As little as a cupful can make a big difference.

Hopefully, you will never have to remove the pillar.

As for leaving the mount powered up, I do not think that is necessary. As long as you park the mount at the end of your observing session you can power it all down and the mount will remember where it was the next time you start it up. This is true whether you have a permanent or portable setup as long as the mount is polar aligned.

Are you using a Keypad ? If so, you will use the Resume from last position option when you start it back up. If you are only using a computer (with APCC ??) it will be something very similar.

Maybe someone else can comment about whether you should leave the CP4, laptop, and / or keypad out in the observatory. If it were me I would  not, especially in the Ohio winters.

Hope this helps

Mike


Re: Newbie questions

M Hambrick
 

Hi Howard

My two cents worth on your concrete pillar: I would go 2 ft deep with the 24-inch diameter hole. Try to get as much rebar in the pillar as possible, and I would not isolate the 24-inch diameter section from the 12-inch diameter section. Try to taper the bottom of the 12-inch diameter hole outwards to create an elephant's foot type of effect. Get the highest strength Sakrete they sell, and check to make sure that there are no temperature limitations (e.g. below freezing) on when you can pour it. Use as little water as possible when mixing it to minimize the chance that it will develop cracks. Soupy concrete due to too much water will crack when it cures. If you follow the mixing directions on the bag you should be OK. If you are mixing it by hand it may take a little more water than the instructions say, but go sparingly with additional water. As little as a cupful can make a big difference.

Hopefully, you will never have to remove the pillar.

As for leaving the mount powered up, I do not think that is necessary. As long as you park the mount at the end of your observing session you can power it all down and the mount will remember where it was the next time you start it up. This is true whether you have a permanent or portable setup as long as the mount is polar aligned.

Are you using a Keypad ? If so, you will use the Resume from last position option when you start it back up. If you are only using a computer (with APCC ??) it will be something very similar.

Maybe someone else can comment about whether you should leave the CP4, laptop, and / or keypad out in the observatory. If it were me I would  not, especially in the Ohio winters.

Hope this helps

Mike


Re: Newbie questions

Howard Ritter
 

I’ll do that, thanks.

Howard

On Oct 25, 2021, at 5:47 AM, fernandorivera3 via groups.io <fernandorivera3@...> wrote:

Leaving the mount powered on 24/7 or almost continuously means you need to consider surge protection such as in case of nearby lightning strikes. 

Fernando



Re: Newbie questions

fernandorivera3
 

Leaving the mount powered on 24/7 or almost continuously means you need to consider surge protection such as in case of nearby lightning strikes. 

Fernando


Newbie questions

Howard Ritter
 

Greetings from a new member of the group. I’m a longtime AP user, having owned a 155EDF on a 600E GEM since new probably 25 years ago. I apologize for the length of the post, but I need a couple of questions answered before I go further.

I decided to take the plunge into a permanent pier, now that I live on a lot with some room and good sky exposure. I was fortunate enough to bag a 1600GOTO this run, expecting delivery in February. I plan to put my Meade 16” SCT OTA on this, with the possibility of alternating with other OTAs. I can’t get equipment in to auger a hole wider than 12”, but I can make it up to 4’ deep. My thought is to manually dig a circular hole 24” in diameter and 8-12” deep (well below the frost line), then to auger a 12” shaft down from the center of that. I’d then fill everything up to grade with concrete. The L-bolts for the pier would go in at pour time.

Does this sound adequate? Sonotube for the pillar to buffer it from the collar? Rebar? Sakrete OK? Which version?


The second question is about absolute encoders. I’m getting more active in imaging and may be doing some pro-am research, but I don’t see a reason to add $5500 to the cost of the mount. I need some clarification about the capabilities of the standard 1600GOTO mount and what the encoders add.

My impression is that the standard mount has motor encoders that tell the mount’s computer how much motor rotation has taken place since, say, the last time the mount was star-aligned. The computer uses the number of motor rotations/fractions to determine the angular position of the shafts relative to where they were at alignment. As long as the computer has power and the shafts aren’t de-clutched from the motors, the computer will know just where the scope is pointed. Is this all correct?

Absolute encoders, as I understand, report the absolute point on the axis shaft that an optical sensor is looking at, so the computer can tell at all times where the shaft is positioned. Continuous power and re-alignment are not necessary, and the precision (least count) of the absolute encoders may be greater than that of the motor encoders. Do I have this right?

If this is correct, then the absolute encoders would be beneficial to me if I have to remove power from the installation between uses, so I don’t have to star-align, or if I have critical tracking needs. I don’t think I’ll have to remove power often, and I don’t think I can use the increased tracking precision. I don’t see a reason to get them, at their price.


Any comments/corrections/clarifications greatly appreciated!

Howard Ritter
Perrysburg, OH


Re: Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

Ray Gralak
 

That is a little worrisome.
It's not anything big to worry about.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of psparkman via groups.io
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2021 8:55 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

Thanks Ray! That is a little worrisome.


Re: Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

psparkman@...
 

Thanks Ray!  That is a little worrisome.


Re: Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

Ray Gralak
 

"Slew warning" messages mean the mount did not reach the target coordinates within a tolerance.

You could give A-P a call tomorrow, and they should be able to suggest some commands to tune your mount to eliminate these warnings.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of psparkman via groups.io
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2021 6:48 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

Actually, as it continues it seems to be having the Slew Warning delay randomly occuring when positive Dec's
as well.


Re: Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

psparkman@...
 

Actually, as it continues it seems to be having the Slew Warning delay randomly occuring when positive Dec's as well.
 


Slew Warning delay while running APPM Model

psparkman@...
 

I just installed the Beta version of APCC Pro, since I have had some issues with SGP Pier flips.  Tonight I am running an APPM model.  I was watching the progress and noticed something that I have not seen before.  The mount slews to a point, settles, then an orange Slew Warning comes up in the status field.  Nothing seems to be happening, but it sits there about 5-10 seconds before taking the image.  It did this on both Counter weight down and counter weight up points.

However, it now seems that the positive Dec points don't have this issue.  It only seemed to happen on the points with Dec <0.

Any ideas?


Re: Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Ray Gralak
 

Rick,

But your comment that a model for each is best makes sense since the model accounts for scope related
issues as well. I think that right there solves my issue and I'll make a separate model for each.
I don't think this would cause the mount to be off by 90 degrees. Most likely the site location or time zone were different between the computers. That might happen if you loaded the settings *after* APCC on the new computer had already initialized the mount.

Also, the mount position would be incorrect if APCC on the second computer unparked the mount from a different position than where the first computer had parked it. It is best to unpark from last-parked position unless it is a new setup location or you moved the scope to a park position by hand.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Rick Darden
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2021 3:20 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Hi Ray,

I think I did that, but I will check. I was working initially on both computers and then, one day, it was off by 90
degrees on startup.

But your comment that a model for each is best makes sense since the model accounts for scope related
issues as well. I think that right there solves my issue and I'll make a separate model for each.

Thank You Ray!


Re: Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Rick Darden
 

Hi Ray,

I think I did that, but I will check. I was working initially on both computers and then, one day, it was off by 90 degrees on startup. 

But your comment that a model for each is best makes sense since the model accounts for scope related issues as well. I think that right there solves my issue and I'll make a separate model for each.

Thank You Ray!


Re: Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Rick Darden
 

Gee I will have to check that. Can't remember if I did.


Re: Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Ray Gralak
 

Hi Rick,

If there are two different telescopes involved, then you normally wouldn't want to use the same model for both.

That said, just copying the model is insufficient to configure your second computer. You should:

1) Use APCC's menu File->Save Settings as.. to save the settings information to a file.
2) Copy the file to the second computer.
3) Use APCC's menu, File->Load Settings.. to load the settings information in the file.
4) Each computer should be configured to unpark from the last parked position.

-Ray

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Rick Darden
Sent: Sunday, October 24, 2021 2:11 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Hi All,

I run 2 imaging systems on my AP1000AE and use 2 independent computers to run each system. I do this
because I have had driver issues running both on the same computer.

I built a pointing model on one and copied it to the other. But when I startup the second computer, the
telescope pointer in my planetarium program is 90 degrees from where it should be.

I park in pos 5 and the pointer should be due north but it is due east and when I slew, it works from that east
position.

I checked all the settings in APCC Pro, the V2 driver and the planetarium software and they are all the same.

Any clue?


Re: Copy APMM model from one computer to another

 

Hi Rick

When you load your model onto the new computer do you solve and recal? 



On Sun, Oct 24, 2021 at 2:11 PM Rick Darden <rick@...> wrote:
Hi All,

I run 2 imaging systems on my AP1000AE and use 2 independent computers to run each system. I do this because I have had driver issues running both on the same computer.

I built a pointing model on one and copied it to the other. But when I startup the second computer, the telescope pointer in my planetarium program is 90 degrees from where it should be.

I park in pos 5 and the pointer should be due north but it is due east and when I slew, it works from that east position.

I checked all the settings in APCC Pro, the V2 driver and the planetarium software and they are all the same.

Any clue?

--
Brian 



Brian Valente


Copy APMM model from one computer to another

Rick Darden
 

Hi All,

I run 2 imaging systems on my AP1000AE and use 2 independent computers to run each system. I do this because I have had driver issues running both on the same computer.

I built a pointing model on one and copied it to the other. But when I startup the second computer, the telescope pointer in my planetarium program is 90 degrees from where it should be.

I park in pos 5 and the pointer should be due north but it is due east and when I slew, it works from that east position.

I checked all the settings in APCC Pro, the V2 driver and the planetarium software and they are all the same.

Any clue?


Re: New beta version of APCC Standard (1.9.1.0) and Pro (1.9.1.1)

Sébastien Doré
 

I just posted a new APCC Pro build that eliminates the popup windows when you start the 3D Viewer.

Yep, pop-up no more.

Sébastien


Re: VPort2 / Fault / Sync Target: Valid Alt/Az, RA/Dec, HA/Dec has not been received!"

Peter Nagy
 

Voyager does not require 64 bits. Currently it's 32 bits but easily handles my QHY600M camera with a monster Sony IMX-455 sensor without issues. It's far more stable than SGP but can't say for NINA.

Peter


Re: AP1100 / APCC Wired Ethernet Connection to Laptop Turning Off WiFi

Peter Nagy
 

You should be able to test it indoors, no need to wait for clear sky.

Peter


Re: VPort2 / Fault / Sync Target: Valid Alt/Az, RA/Dec, HA/Dec has not been received!"

Tom Blahovici
 

I'm not banned from the Voyager forun but will never ask for support again. Effectively I was banned from talking to him again because I sent clear logs with the problem I was facing and he started the email equivalent of yelling at me. Ever wonder why the web interface is stuck at a version from last year? I bet it's the same reason, a very short fuse.
Tom

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