Date   

Re: Of Mice and Mounts

Michael Dolenga
 

Hi Wade, what covering did you use? I think I'm a couple of miles as the crow flies from your location. Now that someone is always home due to COVID, I've used a simple nylon tarp for about a week and just left the rig setup. What a pleasure not having to setup from scratch every session, I can only imagine how heavenly it would be to have a permanent setup.

Anyway, the rope fastened nylon tarp doesn't seem ideal for the long run, so any suggestions for a different material would be appreciated.

Michael



On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 4:28 PM, W Hilmo
<y.groups@...> wrote:

A couple of years ago, I broke down my AP1100 after it had been set up in the yard for a few months and covered when not in use.  Some enterprising creature had completely filled the inside of the mount with maple seeds.  No harm was done and all I needed to do was to separate the mount halves and lightly blow out the stuff that didn’t just fall out.

 

There was no evidence of a nest, just a food storehouse.

 

 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 2:57 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

 

Lat week during an imaging session in my observatory I happened to see a mouse rappelling down the power cord on my nearby 1600 mount. Rather strange, I thought, that mice would use wires as highways up and down a telescope pier.

 

Then last night, as I was getting ready to do some imaging with the 17" astrograph on that 1600 mount, I ran into a familiar problem. The Dec axis ran for 1 second and stopped, with the yellow light coming on in the CP4 controller. I looked up the open hole in the back of the RA (yes I forgot to put the plug back in last August) and saw some shredded paper way up in the Dec axis cavity. I knew then I had to get into the Dec axis and check out the damage.

 

Since I had a large astrograph on the mount, I decided to put the mount counterweight down, scope on top and lock the axes clutch knobs tight. Without removing the scope, I removed all the counterweights, the counterweight shaft and unscrewed the counterweight adapter from the end of the Dec axis. Here's what it looked like:

 

 

After cleaning out the mess:

 

 

The mice had chewed on all the wires and broke several of them. Fortunately I have lots of practice soldering. I pulled out the Dec connector wire along with the crossover box:

 

 

The mice had damage 6 of the 8 wires. With some matching pieces of wire, some heat shrink tubing I spliced in the damaged portions:

 

 

Finished cable wrapped with some electrical tape. Did it work? YES, the mount is back in business and the scope is imaging again.

 


Re: Of Mice and Mounts

 

Karen would agree that we need a company cat.  Nice setup and great view, Don!

 

Clear Skies,

 

Marj Christen

Astro-Physics, Inc

11250 Forest Hills Rd

Machesney Park, IL 61115

Phone: 815-282-1513

Fax: 815-282-9847

www.astro-physics.com

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Donald Rudny
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 7:24 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

 

There’s always this solution.

Don Rudny

Pepeekeo, HI 



On Jul 17, 2020, at 1:28 PM, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:



A couple of years ago, I broke down my AP1100 after it had been set up in the yard for a few months and covered when not in use.  Some enterprising creature had completely filled the inside of the mount with maple seeds.  No harm was done and all I needed to do was to separate the mount halves and lightly blow out the stuff that didn’t just fall out.

 

There was no evidence of a nest, just a food storehouse.

 

 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 2:57 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

 

Lat week during an imaging session in my observatory I happened to see a mouse rappelling down the power cord on my nearby 1600 mount. Rather strange, I thought, that mice would use wires as highways up and down a telescope pier.

 

Then last night, as I was getting ready to do some imaging with the 17" astrograph on that 1600 mount, I ran into a familiar problem. The Dec axis ran for 1 second and stopped, with the yellow light coming on in the CP4 controller. I looked up the open hole in the back of the RA (yes I forgot to put the plug back in last August) and saw some shredded paper way up in the Dec axis cavity. I knew then I had to get into the Dec axis and check out the damage.

 

Since I had a large astrograph on the mount, I decided to put the mount counterweight down, scope on top and lock the axes clutch knobs tight. Without removing the scope, I removed all the counterweights, the counterweight shaft and unscrewed the counterweight adapter from the end of the Dec axis. Here's what it looked like:

 

<image001.png>

 

After cleaning out the mess:

 

<image002.png>

 

The mice had chewed on all the wires and broke several of them. Fortunately I have lots of practice soldering. I pulled out the Dec connector wire along with the crossover box:

 

<image003.png>

 

The mice had damage 6 of the 8 wires. With some matching pieces of wire, some heat shrink tubing I spliced in the damaged portions:

 

<image004.png>

 

Finished cable wrapped with some electrical tape. Did it work? YES, the mount is back in business and the scope is imaging again.

 

<image005.png>


Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Roland Christen
 


The meridian flip automation i use includes a re-centering of the target via plate solve, which I think is pretty common
When you are autoguiding the target is always centered so no plate solve is needed. Because of the guide commands, the internal co-ordinates slowly drift, so at the end of the session you simply do a recal which brings the actual and commanded co-ordinates back together.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Valente <bvalente@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Sat, Jul 18, 2020 10:52 am
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

>>> If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect. 

But likely the fov would have change significantly, so your target would have drifted out of frame

 >>>This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

The meridian flip automation i use includes a re-centering of the target via plate solve, which I think is pretty common


Brian


On Sat, Jul 18, 2020 at 8:48 AM uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io <chris1011=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
Yes, autoguider commands are essentially user initiated moves which cause the mount to go to a new coordinate every time a move command is issued. This is universal and applies to every mount ever made, whether AP mount or other brands. They will all do the same.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Dolenga via groups.io <giroditalia=yahoo.com@groups.io>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Sat, Jul 18, 2020 9:31 am
Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute 7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael


--
Brian 



Brian Valente


Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

 

>>> If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect. 

But likely the fov would have change significantly, so your target would have drifted out of frame

 >>>This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

The meridian flip automation i use includes a re-centering of the target via plate solve, which I think is pretty common


Brian


On Sat, Jul 18, 2020 at 8:48 AM uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io <chris1011=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
Yes, autoguider commands are essentially user initiated moves which cause the mount to go to a new coordinate every time a move command is issued. This is universal and applies to every mount ever made, whether AP mount or other brands. They will all do the same.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Dolenga via groups.io <giroditalia=yahoo.com@groups.io>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Sat, Jul 18, 2020 9:31 am
Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute 7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael



--
Brian 



Brian Valente


Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Roland Christen
 


It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
Yes, autoguider commands are essentially user initiated moves which cause the mount to go to a new coordinate every time a move command is issued. This is universal and applies to every mount ever made, whether AP mount or other brands. They will all do the same.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Dolenga via groups.io <giroditalia@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Sat, Jul 18, 2020 9:31 am
Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute 7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael


Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Ray Gralak
 

Is there a way to configure the mount to not update its coordinates when receiving an autoguiding pulse? My
firmware is too old for APCC anyway, and the expense isn't worth this particular problem.
Unfortunately there is not. You could however do RCALs every so often. This would recenter the mount's coordinates.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): https://www.astro-physics.com/apcc-pro
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver


-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Michael Dolenga via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 8:02 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Hi Ray,

Thanks for the explanation. It seems like undesirable behaviour, however. You autoguide because the mount
is an imperfect mechanical device and you want to keep pointing at precisely the same location in the sky,
which is defined by particular coordinates. The autoguider keeps you there, meaning that the mount remains
pointed to those coordinates. I would expect them to stay where they are.

Is there a way to configure the mount to not update its coordinates when receiving an autoguiding pulse? My
firmware is too old for APCC anyway, and the expense isn't worth this particular problem.

Michael


On Saturday, July 18, 2020, 07:47:00 AM PDT, Ray Gralak <groups3@gralak.com> wrote:


Hi Michael,

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
What you are seeing is changing pointing error in your scope as it is autoguided.

The amount of pointing error can be drastically reduced by using a pointing model (e.g. APCC Pro).

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than
where
it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.
This is incorrect. The mount's internal flip position does not change. However the actual time and position
when the flip occurs may dynamically change. If software is monitoring the mount's position this should not
be a problem.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): https://www.astro-physics.com/apcc-pro
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver


-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Michael Dolenga via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 7:31 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over
a
session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am
configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than
where
it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported
by
the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1
minute
7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would
expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael




Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Michael Dolenga
 

Hi Ray,

Thanks for the explanation. It seems like undesirable behaviour, however. You autoguide because the mount is an imperfect mechanical device and you want to keep pointing at precisely the same location in the sky, which is defined by particular coordinates. The autoguider keeps you there, meaning that the mount remains pointed to those coordinates. I would expect them to stay where they are.

Is there a way to configure the mount to not update its coordinates when receiving an autoguiding pulse? My firmware is too old for APCC anyway, and the expense isn't worth this particular problem.

Michael


On Saturday, July 18, 2020, 07:47:00 AM PDT, Ray Gralak <groups3@...> wrote:


Hi Michael,

> Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
> autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.

What you are seeing is changing pointing error in your scope as it is autoguided.

The amount of pointing error can be drastically reduced by using a pointing model (e.g. APCC Pro).

> This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where
> it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.

This is incorrect. The mount's internal flip position does not change. However the actual time and position when the flip occurs may dynamically change. If software is monitoring the mount's position this should not be a problem.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): https://www.astro-physics.com/apcc-pro
Author of PEMPro V3:  https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver

> -----Original Message-----
> From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Michael Dolenga via groups.io
> Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 7:31 AM
> To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
> Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding
>
> I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a
> session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am
> configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.
>
> This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where
> it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.
>
> As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by
> the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute
> 7 seconds in DEC.
>
> If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would
> expect.
>
> Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
> autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
>
>
> Michael

>




Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Ray Gralak
 

Hi Michael,

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.
What you are seeing is changing pointing error in your scope as it is autoguided.

The amount of pointing error can be drastically reduced by using a pointing model (e.g. APCC Pro).

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where
it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.
This is incorrect. The mount's internal flip position does not change. However the actual time and position when the flip occurs may dynamically change. If software is monitoring the mount's position this should not be a problem.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): https://www.astro-physics.com/apcc-pro
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Michael Dolenga via groups.io
Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 7:31 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a
session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am
configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where
it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not.

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by
the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute
7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would
expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the
autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael


Re: Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Michael Dolenga
 

Math update - the RA difference is 15 arc seconds. DEC is 1 minute. Seems consistent with a slight polar misalignment.

When I plate solve those two images, the difference between their centers is less than 1 arc second.

Michael



On Saturday, July 18, 2020, 07:31:29 AM PDT, Michael Dolenga via groups.io <giroditalia@...> wrote:


I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute 7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael


Mount coordinates change while autoguiding

Michael Dolenga
 

I've noticed that my 900GTO's coordinates, as reported by ASCOM (latest version of the driver) change over a session where I am autoguiding. This occurs whether using MaximDL or NINA/PhD. In both cases, I am configured to send autoguider commands via the ASCOM driver rather than a separate ST4 cable.

This confounds automated meridian flips because the mount "thinks" it is pointed somewhere other than where it actually is. Often, the difference is too slight to be significance, but sometimes not. 

As an example, last night I was doing 30 minute shots of the Crescent Nebula. Over one hour, as reported by the RA/DEC fields written into the FITS header, I saw a difference of 6 minutes, 4 seconds in RA and 1 minute 7 seconds in DEC.

If I leave the mount running with no autoguider connected at all, RA and DEC remain constant, as I would expect.

Is this expected behavior or am I possibly missing some configuration option? It seems as though the autoguider commands are being interpreted as user initiated slews.


Michael


Re: Lens Cleaner

Craig Anderson
 

I’m sorry to hear about the ruined lens, that sounds awful. I’ve personally had a really good experience with the photonic solutions cleaner and have used it on my AP155 a few times. To avoid having it run down the side of the lens, I temporarily remove the front ring from the cell. That way I can make a little ring of the cleaning solution around the edge of the lens without it running down the side. It’s pretty viscous and comes with a little brush that you can use to guide it (not paint it) around on the surface of your lens. Once I have a ring of the material around the edge to protect from run-off, I apply it from the center out, and not so thick that it will run over the edge. If it starts to go towards an edge, I use the little brush to guide it away. If a little goes over the edge it will peel right off but if it wicks down under tight surfaces it can be very difficult remove. 

Using the above technique I’ve had great success getting off dust and pollen- even when stuff was really stuck on the lens.

Water-based stains are another matter. The manufacturer recommends that you lightly spray a solution of water and a tiny bit of soap (like Dawn) on the lens prior to applying the photonic cleaning solution. They sell a specific formulation that works well. This additional step takes care of water-based stains and everything else at the same time in my experience.

The reason I stick with the photonic cleaner now is that I feel like there’s no chance I’ll scratch the lens. Even if you want to “touch up” the cleaning (like if there’s a residual water stain) after cleaning with the solution, at least the lens will be completely dust free after peeling the cleaner off so it seems safer to get the rest with the traditional cleaning method.

-Craig

On Jul 18, 2020, at 7:44 AM, thefamily90 Phillips <thefamily90@...> wrote:

Thanks Jerry. Much appreciated.

Jim


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Greg Salyer <astronutcase@...>
Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 6:26:27 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Lens Cleaner
 
Fortunately I didn't experience the horror story Jerry had. But I do have a message. A few years ago I decided to try out several different cleaning techniques on my Planewave scope. I used the photon stuff after I'd tried the standard tricks. I thought the mirror looked pretty good before applying the photon stuff but was amazed at how much cleaner it looked afterwards. It looked like a brand new mirror fresh from the factory. Now I didn't think this level of cleaning was necessary, but for the next cleaning session (a couple years later) I went straight to the Photon technique. This time it didn't work. The scope seemed almost as bad afterwards as before. I discussed this with the Photon folks at the next NEAF and found out that it can't get rid of water stains. During my original test I'd removed all the water stains before applying the Photon stuff. Well in my environment water stains caused by high humidity during off hours are 99% of the problem! Seems the stuff doesn't really address the real problem (and it's not cheap). I'm back to the good old techniques.

Greg


Re: Lens Cleaner

thefamily90 Phillips
 

Thanks Jerry. Much appreciated.

Jim


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Greg Salyer <astronutcase@...>
Sent: Saturday, July 18, 2020 6:26:27 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Lens Cleaner
 
Fortunately I didn't experience the horror story Jerry had. But I do have a message. A few years ago I decided to try out several different cleaning techniques on my Planewave scope. I used the photon stuff after I'd tried the standard tricks. I thought the mirror looked pretty good before applying the photon stuff but was amazed at how much cleaner it looked afterwards. It looked like a brand new mirror fresh from the factory. Now I didn't think this level of cleaning was necessary, but for the next cleaning session (a couple years later) I went straight to the Photon technique. This time it didn't work. The scope seemed almost as bad afterwards as before. I discussed this with the Photon folks at the next NEAF and found out that it can't get rid of water stains. During my original test I'd removed all the water stains before applying the Photon stuff. Well in my environment water stains caused by high humidity during off hours are 99% of the problem! Seems the stuff doesn't really address the real problem (and it's not cheap). I'm back to the good old techniques.

Greg


Re: Lens Cleaner

Greg Salyer
 

Fortunately I didn't experience the horror story Jerry had. But I do have a message. A few years ago I decided to try out several different cleaning techniques on my Planewave scope. I used the photon stuff after I'd tried the standard tricks. I thought the mirror looked pretty good before applying the photon stuff but was amazed at how much cleaner it looked afterwards. It looked like a brand new mirror fresh from the factory. Now I didn't think this level of cleaning was necessary, but for the next cleaning session (a couple years later) I went straight to the Photon technique. This time it didn't work. The scope seemed almost as bad afterwards as before. I discussed this with the Photon folks at the next NEAF and found out that it can't get rid of water stains. During my original test I'd removed all the water stains before applying the Photon stuff. Well in my environment water stains caused by high humidity during off hours are 99% of the problem! Seems the stuff doesn't really address the real problem (and it's not cheap). I'm back to the good old techniques.

Greg


Re: Lens Cleaner

Christopher Erickson
 

I really appreciate your report too!

Virus-free. www.avg.com

On Fri, Jul 17, 2020 at 5:57 PM Woody Schlom <woody_is@...> wrote:

Jerry,

 

Well I for one am VERY glad and thankful for your long detailed report.  Yeegads – not what I want happening to any of my scopes.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Jerry Floyd
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 6:07 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Lens Cleaner

 

I don't know whether Rolando will venture an opinion on this off-topic question, but I certainly will.

 

My William Optics FLT-132 (mounted on an AP1200GTO) is 13 years old and the objective badly needed cleaning.  I tried the standard method - alcohol and cotton balls - and got nowhere.  The flat fields looked as if the objective had been used for target practice.  I ordered a First Contact kit from Photonic Cleaning and, after practicing on magnifying glasses and old binoculars with very satisfactory results, I finally got brave enough to apply it to the refractor.

 

Big mistake.  The vendor recommends using an O-ring to keep the First Contact polymer fluid away from the rim.  They sell custom-sized O-rings for that purpose and the one I ordered from them seemed to fit well.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  I applied the fluid to the objective with the scope leveled in the vertical position so it wouldn't run off to one side.  It did anyway, and the O-ring did not prevent the fluid from reaching the rim and penetrating underneath.  When the polymer dried, I lifted it off in accordance with the prescribed procedure (you embed dental floss and/or mesh in the polymer) and the objective looked alright. But when I moved the scope away from the vertical position, the fluid which had leaked over the edge, which as it turned out had not dried, ran down over the back side of the objective, with the result that the stars in all my images are smeared and distorted mercilessly.  In other words, the scope is ruined.  If I could disassemble the scope and take out the objective, I could clean the wayward polymer off the back of the lens, but I have no idea how to do that - it's not straightforward, no screws or anything like that, and since the scope is a triplet there are probably serious ramifications involved in taking it apart and reassembling, recollimating the elements, etc. that I know nothing about.  So I'm looking for an outfit which has the expertise to do that, if it is even feasible, i.e. less expensive than buying a new scope.

 

So the bottom line is that I don't recommend using this product on expensive telescopes, especially refractors.  Sorry about the long-winded reply to an off-topic question, but I thought it important to prevent someone else from making the mistake that I did.

 

Jerry L. Floyd 


Virus-free. www.avg.com


Re: Lens Cleaner

Woody Schlom
 

Jerry,

 

Well I for one am VERY glad and thankful for your long detailed report.  Yeegads – not what I want happening to any of my scopes.

 

Woody

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Jerry Floyd
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 6:07 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Lens Cleaner

 

I don't know whether Rolando will venture an opinion on this off-topic question, but I certainly will.

 

My William Optics FLT-132 (mounted on an AP1200GTO) is 13 years old and the objective badly needed cleaning.  I tried the standard method - alcohol and cotton balls - and got nowhere.  The flat fields looked as if the objective had been used for target practice.  I ordered a First Contact kit from Photonic Cleaning and, after practicing on magnifying glasses and old binoculars with very satisfactory results, I finally got brave enough to apply it to the refractor.

 

Big mistake.  The vendor recommends using an O-ring to keep the First Contact polymer fluid away from the rim.  They sell custom-sized O-rings for that purpose and the one I ordered from them seemed to fit well.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  I applied the fluid to the objective with the scope leveled in the vertical position so it wouldn't run off to one side.  It did anyway, and the O-ring did not prevent the fluid from reaching the rim and penetrating underneath.  When the polymer dried, I lifted it off in accordance with the prescribed procedure (you embed dental floss and/or mesh in the polymer) and the objective looked alright. But when I moved the scope away from the vertical position, the fluid which had leaked over the edge, which as it turned out had not dried, ran down over the back side of the objective, with the result that the stars in all my images are smeared and distorted mercilessly.  In other words, the scope is ruined.  If I could disassemble the scope and take out the objective, I could clean the wayward polymer off the back of the lens, but I have no idea how to do that - it's not straightforward, no screws or anything like that, and since the scope is a triplet there are probably serious ramifications involved in taking it apart and reassembling, recollimating the elements, etc. that I know nothing about.  So I'm looking for an outfit which has the expertise to do that, if it is even feasible, i.e. less expensive than buying a new scope.

 

So the bottom line is that I don't recommend using this product on expensive telescopes, especially refractors.  Sorry about the long-winded reply to an off-topic question, but I thought it important to prevent someone else from making the mistake that I did.

 

Jerry L. Floyd 


Re: [ap-ug] Tiny Hourglass in a cosmic Lagoon

Richard Crisp
 

I really like that shot and that is one of my summer favorites

 

It’s a great color narrowband target too

 

 

 

From: main@ap-ug.groups.io <main@ap-ug.groups.io> On Behalf Of Roland Christen via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 3:42 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io; main@ap-ug.groups.io
Subject: [ap-ug] Tiny Hourglass in a cosmic Lagoon

 


Re: Lens Cleaner

Jerry Floyd
 

I don't know whether Rolando will venture an opinion on this off-topic question, but I certainly will.

My William Optics FLT-132 (mounted on an AP1200GTO) is 13 years old and the objective badly needed cleaning.  I tried the standard method - alcohol and cotton balls - and got nowhere.  The flat fields looked as if the objective had been used for target practice.  I ordered a First Contact kit from Photonic Cleaning and, after practicing on magnifying glasses and old binoculars with very satisfactory results, I finally got brave enough to apply it to the refractor.

Big mistake.  The vendor recommends using an O-ring to keep the First Contact polymer fluid away from the rim.  They sell custom-sized O-rings for that purpose and the one I ordered from them seemed to fit well.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  I applied the fluid to the objective with the scope leveled in the vertical position so it wouldn't run off to one side.  It did anyway, and the O-ring did not prevent the fluid from reaching the rim and penetrating underneath.  When the polymer dried, I lifted it off in accordance with the prescribed procedure (you embed dental floss and/or mesh in the polymer) and the objective looked alright. But when I moved the scope away from the vertical position, the fluid which had leaked over the edge, which as it turned out had not dried, ran down over the back side of the objective, with the result that the stars in all my images are smeared and distorted mercilessly.  In other words, the scope is ruined.  If I could disassemble the scope and take out the objective, I could clean the wayward polymer off the back of the lens, but I have no idea how to do that - it's not straightforward, no screws or anything like that, and since the scope is a triplet there are probably serious ramifications involved in taking it apart and reassembling, recollimating the elements, etc. that I know nothing about.  So I'm looking for an outfit which has the expertise to do that, if it is even feasible, i.e. less expensive than buying a new scope.

So the bottom line is that I don't recommend using this product on expensive telescopes, especially refractors.  Sorry about the long-winded reply to an off-topic question, but I thought it important to prevent someone else from making the mistake that I did.

Jerry L. Floyd 


Re: Of Mice and Mounts

thefamily90 Phillips
 

Now that’s a beautiful setup!


From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io <chris1011@...>
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 8:26:10 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts
 
GREAT! Smile

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Donald Rudny <mkea13800@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Fri, Jul 17, 2020 7:24 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

There’s always this solution.


Don Rudny
Pepeekeo, HI 

On Jul 17, 2020, at 1:28 PM, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:


A couple of years ago, I broke down my AP1100 after it had been set up in the yard for a few months and covered when not in use.  Some enterprising creature had completely filled the inside of the mount with maple seeds.  No harm was done and all I needed to do was to separate the mount halves and lightly blow out the stuff that didn’t just fall out.
 
There was no evidence of a nest, just a food storehouse.
 
 
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 2:57 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts
 
Lat week during an imaging session in my observatory I happened to see a mouse rappelling down the power cord on my nearby 1600 mount. Rather strange, I thought, that mice would use wires as highways up and down a telescope pier.
 
Then last night, as I was getting ready to do some imaging with the 17" astrograph on that 1600 mount, I ran into a familiar problem. The Dec axis ran for 1 second and stopped, with the yellow light coming on in the CP4 controller. I looked up the open hole in the back of the RA (yes I forgot to put the plug back in last August) and saw some shredded paper way up in the Dec axis cavity. I knew then I had to get into the Dec axis and check out the damage.
 
Since I had a large astrograph on the mount, I decided to put the mount counterweight down, scope on top and lock the axes clutch knobs tight. Without removing the scope, I removed all the counterweights, the counterweight shaft and unscrewed the counterweight adapter from the end of the Dec axis. Here's what it looked like:
 
<image001.png>
 
After cleaning out the mess:
 
<image002.png>
 
The mice had chewed on all the wires and broke several of them. Fortunately I have lots of practice soldering. I pulled out the Dec connector wire along with the crossover box:
 
<image003.png>
 
The mice had damage 6 of the 8 wires. With some matching pieces of wire, some heat shrink tubing I spliced in the damaged portions:
 
<image004.png>
 
Finished cable wrapped with some electrical tape. Did it work? YES, the mount is back in business and the scope is imaging again.
 
<image005.png>


Re: Of Mice and Mounts

Roland Christen
 

GREAT! Smile

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Donald Rudny <mkea13800@...>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Sent: Fri, Jul 17, 2020 7:24 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

There’s always this solution.


Don Rudny
Pepeekeo, HI 

On Jul 17, 2020, at 1:28 PM, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:


A couple of years ago, I broke down my AP1100 after it had been set up in the yard for a few months and covered when not in use.  Some enterprising creature had completely filled the inside of the mount with maple seeds.  No harm was done and all I needed to do was to separate the mount halves and lightly blow out the stuff that didn’t just fall out.
 
There was no evidence of a nest, just a food storehouse.
 
 
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 2:57 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts
 
Lat week during an imaging session in my observatory I happened to see a mouse rappelling down the power cord on my nearby 1600 mount. Rather strange, I thought, that mice would use wires as highways up and down a telescope pier.
 
Then last night, as I was getting ready to do some imaging with the 17" astrograph on that 1600 mount, I ran into a familiar problem. The Dec axis ran for 1 second and stopped, with the yellow light coming on in the CP4 controller. I looked up the open hole in the back of the RA (yes I forgot to put the plug back in last August) and saw some shredded paper way up in the Dec axis cavity. I knew then I had to get into the Dec axis and check out the damage.
 
Since I had a large astrograph on the mount, I decided to put the mount counterweight down, scope on top and lock the axes clutch knobs tight. Without removing the scope, I removed all the counterweights, the counterweight shaft and unscrewed the counterweight adapter from the end of the Dec axis. Here's what it looked like:
 
<image001.png>
 
After cleaning out the mess:
 
<image002.png>
 
The mice had chewed on all the wires and broke several of them. Fortunately I have lots of practice soldering. I pulled out the Dec connector wire along with the crossover box:
 
<image003.png>
 
The mice had damage 6 of the 8 wires. With some matching pieces of wire, some heat shrink tubing I spliced in the damaged portions:
 
<image004.png>
 
Finished cable wrapped with some electrical tape. Did it work? YES, the mount is back in business and the scope is imaging again.
 
<image005.png>


Re: Of Mice and Mounts

Donald Rudny
 

There’s always this solution.


Don Rudny
Pepeekeo, HI 

On Jul 17, 2020, at 1:28 PM, W Hilmo <y.groups@...> wrote:



A couple of years ago, I broke down my AP1100 after it had been set up in the yard for a few months and covered when not in use.  Some enterprising creature had completely filled the inside of the mount with maple seeds.  No harm was done and all I needed to do was to separate the mount halves and lightly blow out the stuff that didn’t just fall out.

 

There was no evidence of a nest, just a food storehouse.

 

 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> On Behalf Of uncarollo2 <chris1011@...> via groups.io
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2020 2:57 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: [ap-gto] Of Mice and Mounts

 

Lat week during an imaging session in my observatory I happened to see a mouse rappelling down the power cord on my nearby 1600 mount. Rather strange, I thought, that mice would use wires as highways up and down a telescope pier.

 

Then last night, as I was getting ready to do some imaging with the 17" astrograph on that 1600 mount, I ran into a familiar problem. The Dec axis ran for 1 second and stopped, with the yellow light coming on in the CP4 controller. I looked up the open hole in the back of the RA (yes I forgot to put the plug back in last August) and saw some shredded paper way up in the Dec axis cavity. I knew then I had to get into the Dec axis and check out the damage.

 

Since I had a large astrograph on the mount, I decided to put the mount counterweight down, scope on top and lock the axes clutch knobs tight. Without removing the scope, I removed all the counterweights, the counterweight shaft and unscrewed the counterweight adapter from the end of the Dec axis. Here's what it looked like:

 

<image001.png>

 

After cleaning out the mess:

 

<image002.png>

 

The mice had chewed on all the wires and broke several of them. Fortunately I have lots of practice soldering. I pulled out the Dec connector wire along with the crossover box:

 

<image003.png>

 

The mice had damage 6 of the 8 wires. With some matching pieces of wire, some heat shrink tubing I spliced in the damaged portions:

 

<image004.png>

 

Finished cable wrapped with some electrical tape. Did it work? YES, the mount is back in business and the scope is imaging again.

 

<image005.png>

7301 - 7320 of 79016