CGE Newby help
Posted 27 January 2011 - 11:27 PM
Posted 27 January 2011 - 11:35 PM
I have had my CGE for about a year now, and I use it for imaging the planets. I decided I was tired of trying to keep the planets on the CCD, and now im trying to get the scope polar aligned. My problem is when I slew to the first star on the alignment it is no where in site. Im looking for some advice on what I might be doing wrong in the process. I lined the mount axis with polaris, but I did not use the finder scope. Should I use the finder scope to center polaris. Thanks ahead for the help on this situation
Posted 28 January 2011 - 12:19 AM
Posted 28 January 2011 - 02:12 AM
Posted 28 January 2011 - 10:12 AM
Make sure your date, time and location are accurately set.
Posted 28 January 2011 - 10:26 AM
If the problem is that your target is drifting off of the chip, then you MUST do a true polar alignment.
The CGE does not track in Declination. It only tracks in RA. An Autoguider can send signals to the DEC motor, but the mount itself does not do anything to adjust for tracking drift.
So, if you are imaging, you need to do an ACCURATE polar alignment, or get an autoguider.
The issue with missing your first alignment star can have several possible causes. Even if you are accurately polar aligned, there is usuallly a little slop in the scope, but there is almost always some cone error as well.
The Calibaration Stars are there to cancel out the cone error, but the mechanical play still means that it is difficult to get the mount to always hit the first star in the finder.
If I set up using a star chart to approximate the position of the NCP and point the Telrad so that Polaris is at the right "Clock" postion for time and date, my first alignment star will almost always fall within the Telrad 4 degree circle.
So, to prevent DEC drift, you have to accuratly polar align to the NCP and not Polaris, or get an autoguider.
Polar aligning is still recommended, but with the guider, it doesn't have to be as exact.
Posted 28 January 2011 - 11:59 AM
After the first star is centered, the second star will be much closer. Of course, this is all predicated on the assumption that all of the information entered is correct.
Posted 30 January 2011 - 09:25 PM
1) If you have not done so, do a factory reset on the hand controller. Set up lat and long and MOST IMPORTANT - set the time and make sure the daylight savings time is set correctly!
2) Make sure you have the latest firmware on the hand controller and motor control board. The versions of the uploader are not the same as the firmware versions. If you do not have a programmable hand controller, consider getting one as the new firmware is well worth it. I bought a used one and sold my original, the upgrade cost me $50 net and is well worth it.
3) When I set up, I point my tripod leg north. You can do this with a compass or the north star but figure out your local delineation and adjust. The closer you are, the more adjustment range you will have with the head.
4) Level the tripod before you mount the electronics pier and mount. DO NOT EVEN TRY TO LEVEL WITH THE SCOPE ATTACHED! I have a little level that I got from Lowes as my bubble on the head is not that accurate.
5) After I mount the scope and balance (don't forget!!!), I adjust the head through a telrad on Polaris adjusted a little for declination.
6) I do a two star and at least two calibration stars.
When I do this, my goto's are very accurate on both sides of the meridian.
Posted 30 January 2011 - 10:29 PM