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How do you polar align a GEM for solar viewing?

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#1 Renae Gage

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Posted 13 July 2009 - 12:11 PM

There's probably some easy way, but I can't think of it. Pardon my ignorance.

#2 Panza


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Posted 13 July 2009 - 02:43 PM

It depends on which GEM you have. If you have a mount with goto there is usually some way of using the sun (use filters etc). Some stars might also be visible in the daytime. That will make it easy.
If you don't have goto you can get close-ish by using a compass and adjust with correction for true north.
Third option is to set up the mount at night and leave it set up.

#3 Eddgie


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Posted 13 July 2009 - 03:00 PM

Well, unless you are going to image, you don't really need a very accurate alignment for basic tracking.

You you just level the mount (assuming your last good polar alighnment was made with the mount level) and face it north (use a compass that has been adjusted for your local magnetic deviation).

I used to do this all the time. More than good enough for tracking.



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Posted 13 July 2009 - 03:01 PM

Compass and level with angle gauge will get you good enough for the sun. (Usually))

#5 Gunner


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Posted 13 July 2009 - 03:06 PM

As other have stated use a compass, if you know you will be doing solar viewing, do a polar alignment the night before.


#6 Yedgy


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Posted 14 July 2009 - 12:44 AM

Have you posted this question in the solar observing forum?

#7 Luigi


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Posted 14 July 2009 - 06:49 AM

Like others said, a compass (allow for mag variation), the level on the mount, and the latitude (alt) scale on the mount (or inclinometer iPhone ap). I do this even for observing at night. Takes maybe 2 minute and works very well for visual.

Currently, I'm using a SLT mount ($280) for my 60mm Lunt. Enter the location, time of day, point it at the sun, and it'll track all day using 8 internal AA batteries.

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