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Did my first EQ mount tune. Found some shortcuts

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#1 obin robinson

obin robinson


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Posted 30 March 2013 - 05:28 PM

I did my first EQ mount tune today on my LXD-55 goto. I was at first intimidated because I have never taken apart an EQ mount. I was about to order the video from Deep Space Products then I realized something:

This task is about ten times easier than people make it out to be. This job is very similar to changing a nose wheel on an aircraft. It's all about cleaning up old grease and tightening parts just enough so things don't wobble or bind. The EQ tuning takes a bit of finesse but the difficulty is not high at all if you've ever changed a wheel and tire.

I read the instructions from astronomyboy about 3 times and then I decided to tackle the project. Here's the tools I used:

metric allen set
SAE allen set
precision screwdriver
needle nose pliers
lint free rags
old toothbrush

HAZMAT used:
Militec-1 grease. It's a grease version of the awesome Militec-1 firearm lubricant. This is the best stuff under the sun: http://www.militec1.com/grease11.html
Militec-1 firearm lubricant. I lightly coated it to the bare metal before the abrasive was applied.
Mineral spirits

The abrasive I used to polish up the internals:
Norton Synthetic Steel Wool:

The shortcuts:
-Just look at the surfaces which contact against each other. Polish those ones. The rest are fine.
-A needle nose pliers works just fine in place of a spanner.
-When setting backlash and gear engagement tighten the worm down the entire way. Rotate it and every time you feel it bind loosen it up an insignificant amount until it stops binding. Once you can spin the gear around several times and it doesn't bind you are good to go.
-Use more grease than you think you will be needing. If you use Militec-1 you can glob it on and then wipe off the excess. Once you put everything back together spin it about 10-20 revolutions and you will fee it loosen up.

My LXD-55 is now silky smooth. The motors spin with a consistent wine and they don't struggle at all. Total time elapsed: 3 hours from start to finish. Next up is the Skyview Pro!

Now it's time to track some satellites!

obin :jump:

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