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  2. test image ngc 2024

    Noted Shane. Yeh, mine would be around that age. It has not not had a lot of use per se, but looking ahead and my age/activities/health does not really warrant any further expenditure in Astro Gear. I have picked up a couple of accessories for the Canon 750D, for which I will put together a note/pictures regarding focal length reducing rings I purchased. I feel my future in photography will probably orientate closer to the terrestrial vistas Such as heading North of Perth in the Wildflower season Could chuck the MAK90 on the back seat Cheers Dave
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    Hi Dave, I changed my NEQ6 over to belts quite a while ago now. At the time it made all the difference, reducing backlash to virtually zero. I just can't seem to nail down the cause of the current issue and are leaning towards a new mount. I believe the NEQ6 is still a great performer for its price point, I have had mine for around 12-13 years. Mine is still fine for visual and perhaps planetary imaging, but I like deep sky imaging so I have grown tired of fighting it. Cheers Shane
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    Then again ever considered a squadron of UFOs flying in formation? I note that the latest mounts have done away with gears and now use belts. My old EQ6pro is still chugging along OK. Dave.
  5. Earlier
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    Okay. Try swapping the stepper motors if you haven't already. That's all I have left. Even swap the gears over if they can be swapped. The RA worm may have a tiny dent or something. Ray
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    Hi Ray cheers for the reply. I hope you had some fun with the billy lids. I have run with and without PEC, also did a new PE curve for a complete new PPEC. The only other guide software I have tried I have never had any luck with.(Maxim DL4 and Prism10), I believe the issue there is more the lack of sensitivity of my guide cam which may well be replaced with a Lodestar X2 soon as well. I always run the mount with a slight imbalance to have a preload on any gear mesh. I have got the mount tuned so good there is almost zero backlash. When I did a backlash measurement with PHD2 the report noted only miniscule backlash and recommended no backlash compensation. With regards to the stepper motors, I am thinking that may be the issue. I wouldn't be complaining at all if I used the mount for visual only or perhaps widefield imaging, but as you are aware being up close and personal FL imaging is rather more demanding on equipment. Anyway I am starting to get over fighting the mount and missing imaging time. For a 12 to 13 year old NEQ6, I have had good service from it, and are currently waiting on emails with prices to get an Ioptron CEM60 (Thanks Tony ). Shane
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    Also could be the stepper motor moving the mount too far then reverting to pull it back in, etc. I know I am preaching to the choir but try the smallest possible movements in RA only. Turn DEC and backlash off. Ray
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    Sorry about the delay in replying, I've been away with the kidlets in Mandurah. Can you try another guide program to eliminate the possibility of software? And have you tried both with PEC on and off to ensure it is not using a default PEC file? I would also unbalance it the (only after you have tried the above two). Misbalance it so that the scope is travelling uphill. Test and then try it the opposite way. This also speaks volumes about the gear teeth. And try it with PEC on and then off. Ray
  10. Not sure if I posted this one years ago - but I just came across it again. A 9-microsecond freeze of an air rifle pellet taking out 2 eggs. The air rifle pellet can be seen off to the far left. And the eggs were later eaten by the dog - so no waste. Greg
  11. Latest Video Astronomy

    Ray, the Revolution RI2 (Analogue) up top is used as a super-widefield finderscope that goes to a small monitor separate from the computer monitors. It gives me approximately 10 degree FOV. The IMX224 in the Guidescope/finderscope is just used as a closer finderscope and also for guiding if I ever want to guide (which I rarely ever do). It is connected to a small laptop computer and runs in PHD2. The next IMX224 in the ED80 is for viewing/imaging/Live Video, and so is the IMX178 in the 6" Achromat. The IMX224's are used by some as guide cameras but they are excellent small light 1.2mp imaging cameras. That's their most popular use. They are quite good at imaging, and extremely sensitive for video work. The IMX178 is a lot slower than the 224's and is 6.4mp, so it is a great imaging camera. Both the 224 and the 178 are far more sensitive than usual astro imaging cameras. What normally takes minutes to capture takes only seconds in these cameras. They aren't really recommended for serious astrophotography. They are recommended for Live and Near-Live Video Astronomy or fast imaging. I use the 224 in the ED80 and the 178 in the 6" Achro as my main cameras. They are the ones I use for Viewing/Broadcasting/fast Imaging etc. In the software (RisingSky) I simply switch back and forth between the two cameras
  12. Latest Video Astronomy

    Nowhere near the limit Shane. Those huge 6" f/5 Achromats aren't as heavy as they look It is only 9kg. and ED80's are super light. The cameras weigh about the same as an eyepiece. The little ones weigh less than eyepieces!
  13. For a number of reasons I've decided to quit Facebook - so it's either here or www.newforestobservatory.com for my latest piccies Greg
  14. test image ngc 2024

    Ray, the only other guiding software I have tried is within Prism10, I have never had any luck with that but I believe that is due to my guide camera not being sensitive enough. PEC is taken care of in EQMOD, which I have been using for over a decade. Haven't tried if the mount guides with another scope, I only have the RC and a guide scope. I could try swapping cameras around but guiding at 1600mm FL for 400mm FL scope is a bit overkill IMO. Shane
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    I wrote a post yesterday and half way through it got a call and forget to submit the reply, lol But you have answered some of my questions. Have you tried different guiding software to see if there are any differences? Have you tried a PEC program to remove the errors? Finally will the mount guide accurately without the primary imaging scope (a mission to unload and rebalance I know). Ray
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    Cheers Tony, I have done considerable research over the last few weeks, trying to solve this issue and looking at reviews etc on the cem60. I believe the non encoder version is the one I will try convince the MoF that I need. Encoders would be nice but I don't believe the extra $1500 is worth the benefits for me. That would be $ (that I don't have) better spent on other goodies. Thanks for posting the thread about your cem60, I wouldn't have known about them otherwise. Your glowing review, as well as many others, convinced me that this is the best, most affordable option for me. I spent several hours out last night checking everything to no avail, backlash on both axis' is minimal so not that, in fact everything seems mechanically fine. Checked polar alignment and tweaked it a bit, now sitting around 1.5 arc-sec of polar error according to PHD2, it was around 2.4 arc-sec before tweaking it, so not that either. Really has me stumped and can only put it down to either the motors or control board issue. Its been a long time since I've seen round stars from almost any length exposure. Anyway the way I am looking at it, through all the frustration, is that 12-13 years out of the NEQ6 is a reasonable life compared to cost. Shane
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    There are a lot of good mounts out there if your are prepared to spend some money. I bought an iOptron CEM25 and was so impressed I traded out my CGEM for its bigger brother iOptrons, CEM60. with which I am equally impressed for guiding consistency. It claims to carry up to 60 pounds, but I have not yet pushed it beyond about 38 and that has been near perfect guiding. Everything depends upon the mount! if that is screwed up, nothing else matters. The minister of finance might be most pleased that its price is modest.
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    I believe up and down is RA Ray. Shane
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    Good question mate, I've never needed to know before so will get back to you. Shane
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    In that first photo is up and down RA or Dec? Ray
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    G'day Ray, I am a cranky old bastard so I tend to crack the shits when things are playing up and have deleted the really bad subs. I did find an older one that I cropped and zoomed in to get a closer look at the stars. Bad seeing doesn't effect the subs, except for soft focus, and slightly poorer guiding than normal(better seeing). I image at around 1600mm FL and guide at 400mm FL. Not sure where to even start now that I have ruled out mechanical issues. I have "made" an example of the problem at its worst in PS. In this example all I did was clone a star into what the subs in question looked like( imagine all stars the same). This would also have had less visible lines where the mount was moving while exposing. I hope you can understand an old illiterate cranky man.LOL. Shane
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    There is no doubt that the better the mount the more rewarding the hobby becomes. The headaches of cheap mounts cause such frustration, we've all been there. When you say that the software cannot cope with the errors, how big or far are the errors? For example, if you are taking a photo, how oblong are your stars? From what you have said it can't be the bearings or gears. I would be leaning toward (depending on how big the errors are) either bad seeing causing the guidescope to jump around frantically combined with backlash. But I haven't seen the errors so it is hard to guess. What does a guided sub exposure look like? Can you post one? With bad seeing, I cannot shoot anything unless the seeing is good to very good. I now use this before every session (otherwise my focus is soft and I'm wasting my time, but I can still track okay in bad seeing) http://www.bom.gov.au/australia/charts/viewer/index.shtml?type=windbarb&level=200hPa&tz=AEDT&area=Au&model=CG&chartSubmit=Refresh+View Also are you able to drop the fl of your guidescope back with a reducer? Ray
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    Unfortunately I don't think the budget will run that high Greg, more a pipe dream, I will most likely have to settle on something like the Ioptron CEM60. Shane
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    I've seen nothing but good reports on the 10 micron. Greg
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