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Lx80 Multi-mount

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#151 Starhawk

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 09:20 AM

Elastomers aren't true springs, and change properties with temperature. A lot of the "ETX works" would appear to be not asking much from it.

-Rich

#152 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 02 November 2012 - 03:05 PM

Gday Rich

Elastomers aren't true springs, and change properties with temperature. A lot of the "ETX works" would appear to be not asking much from it



Fully agree, but i was just answering Eds comment re how the ETX worm was preloaded. In reality, the ORing method is not very "responsive", but it does "ooze during operation" thus keeps the gears in contact.


The main point of the piccy was to show a low pressure angle worm could be made in the sizes we were discussing.

Andrew

#153 Starhawk

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Posted 03 November 2012 - 12:03 AM

Gday Andrew,

I'm with you there. Going from the way the details are designed, I can't imagine the same engineering authority was behind all of these designs. What does that mean? I'm really not sure. The LX80 has been profoundly difficult to account for.

-Rich

#154 dksolar3294

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 07:32 PM

Jack, Now that your machinist has made a LX80 tripod top plate replacement, is he interested or willing to make more? at what $cost for a single?

#155 Starhawk

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 11:50 PM

I think Jack is working on determining the efficacy of his new plate, and using the mount in any case- see the other LX80 thread active at the moment.

-Rich

#156 Jack Huerkamp

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 10:34 AM

The machinist is ready to make more of them for me. And the final price depends on how many I get and the shipping from Canada.

Regarding the mount, I tested it at DSRSG a few weeks ago. Rod Mollise was there and has commented on what he saw on his new blog. Its contained in his report of the DSRSG. His blog can be found at:

http://uncle-rods.blogspot.com/

If anyone is interested in getting a tripod top replacement, contact me directly.

Jack Huerkamp

#157 Axle

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 03:25 PM

Well, I bought a LX80 by accident because I ordered it last April, kind of forgot about the order and then received it about a month or so ago. I've used it a few times now and actually have enjoyed it.

I've read all the LX80 threads and was concerned about the lightweight tripod top. Also, upon first inspection and use, I sort of thought that this particular LX80 might not have much of the AZ slop being discussed.

Thus, in order to avoid a tripod failure and to try and gain some tripod stability and minimize vibration, I asked a machinist friend to make a beefier top.

Here's our version the LX80 tripod top:

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The top is billet aluminum and the leg lugs are steel. The dull finish is from bead blasting.

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The new top width is the same width as the attachement bolt posts on the OEM top. The allen bolts are about 2 1/2 inches long.

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The little hole by my thumb is for the OEM bubble level; LOL...

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The new top basically has the same dimensions as the original top.

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Although the center rod attachment lowers the tripod spreader triangle a little, it still fits fine.

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Everything assembles perfectly using the homemade top.

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Inlcuding counterweights, the above is about 50 pounds or so.

My only use is visual and outreach. Although I've used the LX80 several times in alt/az, I have not set it up in EQ yet. Last night was the first use with the new top.

The new top definitely removes any worries that a leg might break away. But maybe there was only slight gain in overall vibration removal, if any.

To be honest, last night was the first time I really checked the LX80 az slop being discussed in the other thread. I now better understand the issue but am not really worried about it since I am visual only.

Anyway, I wanted to share my solution to the LX80 tripod top weakness. Before I asked my friend about machining a new top, I was going to install small diameter tie bolts on the OEM top for increasd strength and fill the whole underside area with epoxy resin.

So far, I like the LX80 because it is relatively easy to set up and I like Sandy Wood LOL... Next I will try the EQ configuration to see how stable that is.

thanks,
Axle

#158 Mkofski

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 03:32 PM

Axle,

Thanks for the information. That top is nice looking. Is your friend interested in making any more? If so, let us know the price.

#159 Jack Huerkamp

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 09:27 PM

Axel,

I noticed that when I added the replacement tripod top that my machinist developed, the mount was more steady than with the stock top. But some of that may have come from not having to fear overtightening the spreader and having a leg snap off. If you are going to use the LX80 for purely visual observing, you may find it satisfactory in Alt-Az mode. The damping time for mine when using a C9.25 was about 5 seconds if I tapped the diagonal. I don't know how heavy your refractor is, but it's longer than my SCT, so it may result in slightly higher vibration. My damping time doubled when I set the scope up in EQ mode.

Yours truly,

Jack Huerkamp

#160 DuiA1

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Posted 09 December 2012 - 10:00 PM

The new top looks very substantial. Nice. What js your damping time in az and equatorial mode? What's the thickness of the material behind the Allen bolt on the U section?

#161 Axle

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 12:09 AM

Thanks for your replies.

I do not have an exact damping time yet because the wind was a little breezy. So really, my previous comments regarding vibration are very loose because the wind was enough to affect the dampening. In fact, the wind eventually ended the session.

The material thickness behind the bolt head is about 3/16" - 1/4" or so. i do not have the exact measurement. We were going to make it thicker by cutting a deeper notch into the disc and leave more material on the back side of the U. But that extra material was not necessary to attain the strength needed. The bolts will never pull through in any scenario in this application. Interestingly, this specific aspect was discussed several times to ensure it would be enough. Another option we were considering was to remove some material off the front of the bolt head and having a shallower cup.

Unfortunately, there are too many other projects in the que to make any more of these at the moment.

I will try and get some dampening times the next time out.

#162 Jack Huerkamp

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:06 AM

Axel,

At the last star party I was at with the LX80 and C9.25, I did notice the scope being shaken by light breezes while in EQ mode. It was enough to wash out any detail visible on Jupiter. The view of Jupiter was much better in A/A mode as the damping time was 50% less.

My load on the mount was the 22# OTA and I was using a 22# Celestron counterweight.

Jack Huerkamp

#163 ldesign1

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 05:20 PM

Has anyone physically counted the amount of teeth on the LX80 worm gear? I can't find any specs on it to input the data in PemPro.

#164 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 06:26 PM

Gday Ralph

Toothcount wise, the LX80 is the same as an LX90
ie 154 teeth

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia

#165 ldesign1

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Posted 12 March 2013 - 08:19 PM

Thank you Andrew!

#166 ldesign1

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:13 AM

Does anyone know if there is a fuse inside the mount to protect the pc board from burning out if a cable gets snagged? Just wondering because I had a bit of a scare today when my mount all of the sudden stopped in the middle of a slew from a cable snag. I couldn't get it to power back on so I started to disassemble it then I decided to check the cables and connector first. I had a short 6" right angle cable extension connected to the main power cable. When I connected the main cable, the power light came on. But when I connected the short extension to it, no power. So I took apart the extension cable instead and discovered that the snag had caused the wire to separate fron the solder connection so power wasn't reaching the mount. That was a relief. I re-soldered the connection and everything worked fine again.

I know that the hand controller has a selection for cable snag, but I don't know what that does or how it works. I just enabled it as an assumption that it offers some sort of protection. Does any one know for sure?

#167 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 03:32 AM

Gday Ralph

There are NO internal fuses,
ie if you fry, you die with a Meade scope.

I know that the hand controller has a selection for cable snag,

No it doesnt, it has a "cord wrap" function

but I don't know what that does or how it works.



Cord wrap ON merely limits how many revs the scope will go one way or the other in RA when doing a goto.
It provides NO protection against cables getting caught whilst in the allowable slewing regions.

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia

#168 ldesign1

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 06:30 AM

No fuse huh! I guess I will start using my old extension with an in-line fuse. At least that will prevent the mount from trying to draw too much current when a snag does occur. Do you think that will work?

#169 rmollise

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Posted 13 March 2013 - 09:34 AM

Most cigarette lighter style plugs have fuses. Will that save your scope? Maybe. Remember: fuses are designed to protect the power source and prevent fires, not to save delicate ICs. ;)

#170 chemman

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Posted 18 March 2013 - 09:17 PM

So I will be doing some experimentation with amperage loading soon. I am going to figure what fuse it will take to protect the thing from physical damage. Has anyone done this already?

#171 rmollise

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Posted 19 March 2013 - 08:05 AM

So I will be doing some experimentation with amperage loading soon. I am going to figure what fuse it will take to protect the thing from physical damage. Has anyone done this already?


I'd be awful careful with that. ;)

As above, that's not the purpose of a fuse. May save the gear, may not.

#172 Whichwayisnorth

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 03:06 PM

FYI I noticed on OPT's website it looks like there is a $200.00 off on these now. Back to the intro price of 799US

#173 rmollise

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 03:08 PM

The question I have is "has anything been improved"? A couple of people seem to have received 80s that perform better...

#174 Hilmi

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 04:16 PM

I suspect that the people had different expectations thats why they feel it performs well. My gut feeling is that Meade would re-brand it as an LX85 if they where to improve the mount so as to distance it from the badly received first edition.

#175 rmollise

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Posted 28 March 2013 - 05:35 PM

Dunno...there was one post that a mount received back from Meade had had various springs removed and no longer exhibited the dreaded "play."






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