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TheWabbit
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/11

12" LX200 classic with fuse problems
      #4613953 - 05/31/11 10:32 PM

First post here so howdy everyone.

I have a 12" LX200 Classic that has not been used for a few years. My son is now old enough to enjoy the night sky so I pulled it out last night. Unfortunately, the scope is having some electrical issues. The scope keypad died then the base unit stopped worked. While I was checking the power cord, the fuse box was really hot. After it cooled, it was obvious the external fuse blew. I pulled the base circuit board out and the interior fuse looks to be okay.

After reviewing the net for possible fixes, I found:

http://www.bbcl03736.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/LX200%20Faults.htm

"Symptom:- Fuse blowing, either externally or the fuse mounted behind the Power Panel.

This is most probably caused by the failure of one of five components, all of which should be replaced to effect a lasting repair. It is the result of component failure of C1 on the Power Panel and/or C8 on the Processor Card (near the 5v regulator) and/or C2 in the hand controller and/or C1 on the DEC/RA motor control board. These are Tantalum Capacitors, normally fawn in colour, and are polarity conscious. Replace with 10uF 35volt working Tantalum or Electrolytic. (Please note that the capacitor in the hand controller has a tendency to burn through the keypad membrane when it goes faulty, rendering the handset useless and unrepairable..."

Before I begin surgery on my LX200, I want to confirm that this is a known problem and replacing the capacitors with 10uF 35v will fix the problem.

The site has a bunch of other suggestions to do to the board but I'm not familiar enough with electronics to do them. Are they critical?


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George D
Vendor
*****

Reged: 04/13/10

Loc: So Cal
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4614282 - 06/01/11 03:58 AM

It's common to have tantalum capacitors fail in the LX200 Classic. It could be due to age but also due to the fact that most of the original caps were only rated for 25 VDC. That should have been fine, but for the fact that the 18 VDC power unit is unregulated and often spikes or stabilizes at voltages higher than 25 volts.
When the caps fail, they often short out. They also go up in flames at times, doing some very major damage.
You can replace them with any type of electrolytic that is at least 10uf and 35 VDC. The tolerance isn't critical but the size/fit may be a challenge with higher rated caps.

Go for it! They're easy to replace and relatively inexpensive.

My three rules to live by;
1. Elephants have the right of way.
2. Stay away from women with tattoos.
3. There's nothing I can break so badly that a new one wouldn't fix.

OK; Number two is no longer valid and number three is the main one for this topic.
Good luck!


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TheWabbit
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/11

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: George D]
      #4614599 - 06/01/11 10:04 AM

Thanks for the response. This goes from bad to worse. I was disassembling the parts of my scope to replace the capacitors when I found the one that exploded. It was the hand controller capacitor at C2 and it burned through the membrane.

Link to oversize picture

(Edit to link due to image dimensions exceeding TOS. BRisley)

Has anyone figure out a solution to repair the handset? Others have said it make the handset unusable but hoping someone has figured out a workaround.

If I use the RS232 port, can a computer still drive the scope without the handset?

Edited by BRisley (09/20/11 10:08 AM)


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StarGeazer
sage


Reged: 11/23/10

Loc: Cross Junction, VA, USA
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4614941 - 06/01/11 01:13 PM

OUCH!!!!!!!

Bummer dude!

I believe that you can. Actually I think Stellarium will drive it. Hopefully someone more experienced will give you a definitive answer on that.

Actually there is another option. George D has an upgrade kit that I think uses the updated Autostar controller.

George D? Calling Dr. George!

Anyone....anyone....

Bueller......Bueller.....


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TheWabbit
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/11

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: StarGeazer]
      #4614962 - 06/01/11 01:21 PM

Thanks StarGeazer. I just talked to George via email. I also talked to Meade and they said sorry and how about paying us $2339 and give us your scope for a new 12". I don't think so. Once all this gets settled; repair or upgrade, no more Meade anything for me.

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StarGeazer
sage


Reged: 11/23/10

Loc: Cross Junction, VA, USA
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4614994 - 06/01/11 01:33 PM

Yeah, Meade doesn't have a great rep on their support side. Sorry to hear that. I do still love my classic though. I just know I am on my own when it comes to repairs. But then, I do have a 12 year old scope.

There are some other folks out there that do repairs. You might want to check on the Yahoo LX200 group for more information if you would want to go that route.

Seems to me I have seen the old handset on eBay too. You just never know what you can find out there.


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Naturlich
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 10/30/09

Loc: Dukinfield, Cheshire, UK
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: StarGeazer]
      #4615000 - 06/01/11 01:36 PM

Hey wabbit, I had the same thing with my 10" classic, replacement handsets are very rare and not cheap, the solution I chose is part of my signature block (link there), I upgraded the control systems with Georges most excellent Autostar Upgrade Kit, so now my LX200 Classic is running Autostar 497. It does exactly what it says on the tin, it replaces your Classic control boards/handset with a new control system and 497 handset. I was one of the first group of people to get this upgrade and it's worked flawlessly since the day I installed it, ofcourse George never sits back, and his latest version is even better and with extra functionality. I believe it's worth you checking out for sure, especially with how bad things have gotten for your LX.

I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for you breathing life back into your Classic!

Nat


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Naturlich
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 10/30/09

Loc: Dukinfield, Cheshire, UK
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: StarGeazer]
      #4615011 - 06/01/11 01:44 PM

Quote:

Yeah, Meade doesn't have a great rep on their support side. Sorry to hear that. I do still love my classic though. I just know I am on my own when it comes to repairs. But then, I do have a 12 year old scope.

There are some other folks out there that do repairs. You might want to check on the Yahoo LX200 group for more information if you would want to go that route.

Seems to me I have seen the old handset on eBay too. You just never know what you can find out there.




Yeah the Classics are so old now even with bad support to start with, at this age, there just isn't any at all from Meade.

I'm starting my Bearing upgrade and just finished stripping them down ready to take to the machine shop for boring out, that'll sort out the Dec axis and get it realy smooth. When my LX200 died I couldn't find any handsets anywhere so I went ahead and upgraded with George, and although I later found a handset, it was half the price of my complete upgrade! So glad I did the upgrade though, because my "support" is now George, who is infinately more helpful and reliable even my handset isn't running meade firmware anymore LOL

But I've put alot of effort into this Classic, and I fully believe it's worth it, the gears and overal setup is rock solid, with my bearing upgrade to needle instead of crapy plastic sleeves, and the upgraded electronics, I've got the solid Classic running very modern bearings and controls, couldn't ask for more (other than a bigger telescope!)


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George D
Vendor
*****

Reged: 04/13/10

Loc: So Cal
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Naturlich]
      #4615076 - 06/01/11 02:20 PM

The Meade products are actually pretty good these days. Remember, you're dealing with 90's technology there.
As for their customer relations and service, they seem to be in a state of flux. I think they are struggling in this poor economy, just like many "specialty" companies are. They would do well to get some good marketing advice and follow it.

I think you can repair that handset. You'll have to cobble something together on the ribbon cable but it can at least get you working again I'll bet. That cap is most likely shorting your power system.


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TheWabbit
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/11

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: George D]
      #4615666 - 06/01/11 09:22 PM

Good news. The wife understands that my scope needs to be fixed so I'll be emailing you tonight George.

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StarGeazer
sage


Reged: 11/23/10

Loc: Cross Junction, VA, USA
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4616492 - 06/02/11 11:37 AM

Even with all the optics upgrades and coma corection in the newer scopes, I keep hearing these old Classics are a solid overall product. I think mine will be with me for a long time to come. If the elecronics ever finally blows a major cork, I guess it will be new mount time.

Of course, these are my current feelings, only having about a years worth of ownership and still having been through the cap replacement thing.


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altair1956
super member
*****

Reged: 07/05/09

Loc: Light polluted central Mass
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: StarGeazer]
      #4617261 - 06/02/11 07:17 PM

There is a guy in Massachusetts who has been repairing LX200's for years. He also has a supplier who can provide new handset overlays. I just had him go thru my 12 inch electronics and replace all the capacitors for me and install a new overlay. VERY nice work, very reliable. The overlay and cable can be gotten from him for around $50 or you can send him the electronics and he can repair for you.
His name is Ron Sampson, rsampsonus@yahoo.com.
He has been doing this type of repair work for about 10+ years and has 3 LX200's of his own.Also try the LX200 users yahoo group. Ron is on that a lot and can be reached that way also.

Edited by altair1956 (06/02/11 07:23 PM)


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erniewan
member


Reged: 11/08/10

Loc: Rocky River, Ohio
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: altair1956]
      #4617594 - 06/02/11 10:48 PM

+1 for Ron's work. Ron has upgraded the caps on my 10 and 12 inch classics, as well as replacing the main cap on both of my AC adaptors.

Great work, and quick turnaround.


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TheWabbit
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/11

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: erniewan]
      #4628180 - 06/08/11 01:06 PM

Thanks for the advice everyone. I purchased George's upgrade and the scope is working like a charm. Unfortunately, the mosquitoes had a feast on me when I took the scope out to test it.

The Autostar will take getting used to but what it does so far.


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Naturlich
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 10/30/09

Loc: Dukinfield, Cheshire, UK
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4628265 - 06/08/11 01:38 PM

Cool Wabbit! So as per system requirements, the minute you get somthing for astronomy, the weather turns bad LOL I'm sure you'll be real happy with it once you get it under some stars

Clear Skies!

Nat


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LoveChina61
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 06/20/09

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #4665659 - 06/29/11 08:26 PM

I replaced the same capacitors on my handset before they blew out. The best advice I received before attempting that was simply to clip the old capacitor off high up on the legs and then solder the new capacitor onto the protruding legs of the old one.

A similar ribbon on my latop burnt through like that, and some local Chinese guy at the computer store fixed it for me. He used very thin plastic-coated copper wires to bridge the burn gap for each and every tiny circuitry thread/trail. Then he just taped the wires down with a piece of electrical tape so they would not easily come loose. It was nigh unto performing surgery, but the final results were fantastic and I have not had any problem with it since.

I'm not sure that I would be brave enough to try it, but it can be done. Since the handset is worthless without it anyway, if you want to mail the ribbon over here to me via snail-mail to give it a try, I can run it on over to the computer store for some emergency surgery to see if he can perform surgery on it. He probably wouldn't charge me more than a few bucks so I'm not worried about the cost on my end.


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jcarr
newbie


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Sandusky, Ohio
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: LoveChina61]
      #4817081 - 09/19/11 08:53 PM

My 12" LX200 classic will be arriving within the next few days. Currently all the electronics are functional. Is there a setup I should do to thwart the dreaded "tantalum capacitor" issue? (I would rather have $50 worth of preventative maintenance than $500 of repair/replacement!)
Thanks!


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Christopher EricksonModerator
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/08/06

Loc: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: jcarr]
      #4817100 - 09/19/11 09:10 PM

Quote:

My 12" LX200 classic will be arriving within the next few days. Currently all the electronics are functional. Is there a setup I should do to thwart the dreaded "tantalum capacitor" issue? (I would rather have $50 worth of preventative maintenance than $500 of repair/replacement!)
Thanks!




You can open up the hand controller and replace the caps with higher-voltage versions before powering up the scope for the first time.


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jcarr
newbie


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Sandusky, Ohio
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #4817838 - 09/20/11 10:37 AM

Thanks Chris for the quick reply... I did some electronics about 20 years ago in the Navy surface fleet, but was really hoping for something along the hardware side I guess (I think I have a soldering iron around here somewhere, oh wait that's a propane torch... this is going to be ugly)...

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Christopher EricksonModerator
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/08/06

Loc: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: jcarr]
      #4818272 - 09/20/11 02:02 PM

Quote:

Thanks Chris for the quick reply... I did some electronics about 20 years ago in the Navy surface fleet, but was really hoping for something along the hardware side I guess (I think I have a soldering iron around here somewhere, oh wait that's a propane torch... this is going to be ugly)...




Do you have any nearby friends who are into ham radio or general electronics?


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neotesla
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 11/18/10

Loc: Canada
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: jcarr]
      #4818384 - 09/20/11 02:58 PM

Quote:

...(I think I have a soldering iron around here somewhere, oh wait that's a propane torch... this is going to be ugly)...




I always hated trying to desolder capacitors and other small bits on boards, until I got a Dremel tool. Used the cutting disks to remove the components, and gently grind flush the surface. Using the smallest bits I could find (same size as the wires on the caps and resistors), drill the hole out, thread the new piece in and solder. This reduced the damage I got in the past from overheating the board and damaging the circuits. So you can put away your propane torch!


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jcarr
newbie


Reged: 06/12/11

Loc: Sandusky, Ohio
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #4818751 - 09/20/11 05:52 PM

I might be able to bribe an I&C tech or two at work with lunch... I don't think they even go down to the component level any longer out there... it's usually just chuck the card out and replace it with a new one!

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Brian Risley
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/04/06

Loc: SW Florida
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: jcarr]
      #4819022 - 09/20/11 08:56 PM

Jeff, Welcome to CN!
As you have found out, the guys here do know there stuff.
Feel free to ask any questions, we all have been newbies in one area or another.
(Yeah, I got started in computer repair when you could replace an IC and fix things (and the manufacturers allowed it!), now its rare to do that!)

Brian


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Stewww
super member
*****

Reged: 06/29/10

Loc: Memphis, IN
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #4819616 - 09/21/11 08:06 AM

Sorry if redundant as I just did a speed read.

Look at the round (electrolyte) caps and see if any are bulging at the top. If so it's definitely bad.

A metric poo poo ton of bad caps found their way in to electronics some years back. If a piece of electronic equipment goes bad check for bad caps.

I know a guy at work that fixed his HD TV by replacing a few caps and I have fix several PC Motherboards that had them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capacitor_plague


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scotty693
newbie


Reged: 01/06/13

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Stewww]
      #5608799 - 01/06/13 04:47 PM

Hello everyone this is my first post here so "hi". Well i switched my LX200 classic on for the first time in about 3 years, (its about 8 years old), poof went C1 on the power board. Tantalum capacitor literally blew its top off. Obviously my lx200 is just so much scrap now, it just slews in RA at full speed madly. I will replace C1 and C3 tomorrow with a Tant 10uF 35V from Maplin (UK component store) and see what happens, but i wonder if there is more damage now, or if this will fix it. What is the experience of others and what are my other options. I believe there is a recgonised expert who sells some sort of upgrade here (i.e George Dudash). Now i have studied electronics and have an oscilloscope so i could do some detailed tests, but i have not done this for years, and know nothing of the circuits in this scope. I also do not intend buying a replacement since the skies are now so awful in the uk its a waste of money in my view (permanent cloud these days , so it seems at least in Basingstoke UK ).

Edited by scotty693 (01/06/13 04:53 PM)


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Christopher EricksonModerator
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/08/06

Loc: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: scotty693]
      #5609533 - 01/07/13 12:34 AM

Ron Sampson repairs LX200 classic electronics and he can be reached at rsampsonus "at" yahoo.com

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scotty693
newbie


Reged: 01/06/13

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #5610535 - 01/07/13 04:30 PM

any solutions based in the UK , out there ?

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Christopher EricksonModerator
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/08/06

Loc: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: scotty693]
      #5610566 - 01/07/13 04:48 PM

Quote:

any solutions based in the UK , out there ?




Non that I am aware of but Ron Sampson receives LX200 Classic electronics from all over the world for repair. You just remove your boards, cables, motors and hand controller and arrange shipment according to Ron's advice. You will get them back in about 2-4 weeks, all-repaired.

He has an excellent rep.


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neotesla
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 11/18/10

Loc: Canada
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #5610594 - 01/07/13 05:13 PM

Found this in an old post, it was for repair of a Meade RCX400 scope, but as suggested by the post, they may be able to help...

"The guy to speak to in the UK regarding your RCX problem is Steve Collingwood, the service guy from Telescope House (main UK Meade dealers) he knows all about RCX's..."

http://www.telescopehouse.com


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orion61

*****

Reged: 10/20/07

Loc: Birthplace James T Kirk
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: neotesla]
      #5610766 - 01/07/13 07:21 PM

I replaced my caps in my handset but in the long run I
got the Autostar upgrade on my 12"
I kept my old electronics and figured if the price on the origonals ever hit $200.00 I'd sell them...LOL
I still love the Classic LX200 and still think back on how amazing these were, and to me still are.
Mine still does everything I want a scope to do and probably ever will.
Chasing the Space station well.. that might be cool but not the highest thing on my list.
I have my 12" Big gun, my 7" Lx200 for Planetary and Doubles
The old C8 and 102 ED for quick but serious, and the 127 NexStar SLT with a very much needed tripod upgrade for Grab and Go.
Life is good


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scotty693
newbie


Reged: 01/06/13

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: orion61]
      #5611855 - 01/08/13 12:23 PM

thank you all for that i shall make contatc with Ron, and speak to telescope house.

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Mike Boessen
journeyman


Reged: 05/31/10

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: TheWabbit]
      #5644695 - 01/26/13 04:37 PM

Hi, Wabbit: I have repaired 3 LX 200's that have had this problem. My advice concerning the hand controller is to chuck it and get the wireless one from Meade. SWEET! I have an original that I have replaced the capacitors in. I'd sell it for 80 bucks if you are stuck on that idea, though.
I was not able to filter out what conclusion you reached. ALL tantalums should be replaced with electrolytics. NEVER use a tantalum. If you are using the 12v to 18v power adapter from Meade, this is a POS. It should have a 10 amp Hexfred diode put across the output and an inline fuse added.
Most of the time when these tantalums blow they take out a couple of ic's on the motherboard. If you are back in business, fine. If not, let me know and I can maybe help you out. They are cheap and easy to replace.

One other note of warning. The RA and DEC drives can get a little noisy in these things. A lot of people try to take them apart and lube them. It's easy to mess up the encoders doing that. If you aren't really comfortable with doing this, get someone experienced to do it.

Hope you are back in business.


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Christopher EricksonModerator
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/08/06

Loc: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Mike Boessen]
      #5647104 - 01/27/13 10:38 PM

Quote:

Hi, Wabbit: I have repaired 3 LX 200's that have had this problem. My advice concerning the hand controller is to chuck it and get the wireless one from Meade. SWEET! I have an original that I have replaced the capacitors in. I'd sell it for 80 bucks if you are stuck on that idea, though.
I was not able to filter out what conclusion you reached. ALL tantalums should be replaced with electrolytics. NEVER use a tantalum. If you are using the 12v to 18v power adapter from Meade, this is a POS. It should have a 10 amp Hexfred diode put across the output and an inline fuse added.
Most of the time when these tantalums blow they take out a couple of ic's on the motherboard. If you are back in business, fine. If not, let me know and I can maybe help you out. They are cheap and easy to replace.

One other note of warning. The RA and DEC drives can get a little noisy in these things. A lot of people try to take them apart and lube them. It's easy to mess up the encoders doing that. If you aren't really comfortable with doing this, get someone experienced to do it.

Hope you are back in business.




Meade's wireless hand controller only worked with the LX200GPS scopes, not the LX200 Classic scopes. And it has been discontinued at any rate. It had way too many QC problems.

Tantalum capacitors are much-better than electrolytics in almost every application. Meade's mistake was in installing under-rated caps. Replacing the existing 16V-24V tantalums with 35V tantalums is the correct solution. Almost every single mf cap on any modern circuit board is a tantalum, not an electrolytic. Your cellphone, TV and car are full of tantalums.


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rimcrazy
sage


Reged: 03/03/12

Loc: Overgaard, AZ
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: Christopher Erickson]
      #5648578 - 01/28/13 04:06 PM

I replaced all of the caps on my 10" LX200 classic myself. Not too big of a deal except the RA board. You can't remove it without cutting wires and there are quite a few. Stupid that they are soldered both into the board and bound into the motor assy at the other end. I ended up making connectors to put it all back together. I use 10uf 50V Tan. caps and changed my supply to a 15Vdc. I have a fair amount of weight on my scope so I did not want to go all the way down to 12V. I cut the max slew rate by about 1/3 so as to not overtax the motors.

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George D
Vendor
*****

Reged: 04/13/10

Loc: So Cal
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: rimcrazy]
      #5654697 - 01/31/13 05:05 PM

Quote:

Tantalum capacitors are much-better than electrolytics in almost every application. Meade's mistake was in installing under-rated caps. Replacing the existing 16V-24V tantalums with 35V tantalums is the correct solution. Almost every single mf cap on any modern circuit board is a tantalum, not an electrolytic. Your cellphone, TV and car are full of tantalums.




Actually; The "best" component to use in any circuit is the one best suited for it's needs. In the case of tantalum caps versus electrolytics, it's a trade off in size, precision of rated capacitance, and cost, as well as potential failure modes and longevity.

Tanatalums tend to have a much more catastrophic failure mode (actual fire and flames occuring) versus that metal can of an electrolytic. Since the circuits in the Meade products are using the caps for power filtering, and not for critical timing circuits, I recommend and continue to replace these caps myself, with electrolytics instead of tantalums.


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ginnyj
newbie


Reged: 01/06/14

Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: altair1956]
      #6300101 - 01/08/14 01:43 PM

I'm glad I found this old post - my LX200 keypad just fried and I will be contacting him! Thanks for posting the info!

Ginny


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orion61

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Reged: 10/20/07

Loc: Birthplace James T Kirk
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: ginnyj]
      #6300154 - 01/08/14 02:24 PM

Make sure you rpl the C2 cap in the handset as soon as you get it! I only use Military Grade, they are only a buck or so!
You can use as high a rating as you want as long as it is over
30, mine are 50, I have a bunch left over if you need some!
I also suggest you ONLY power it from 12V DC..
why bother taxing those old electronics!
Good Luck!


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wd8sbb
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Reged: 08/26/12

Loc: Southwest Ohio
Re: 12" LX200 classic with fuse problems new [Re: orion61]
      #6302757 - 01/09/14 06:50 PM

If you feel that the Classic is good enough to repair, you may still be able to buy just the keypad membrane from Ron Sampson. He was selling them outright a couple years back.

Of course if you, or an interested friend, are not good with electronics, it may be much better to go with the autostar upgrade, or third party repair.

You cannot get through bootup without both the hand brick and base computer doing a handshake. So no it will not work via RS232 the way you say it is.

As for Meade not reparing the LX200 classic any more. Although I don't like that, you do have to remember that there are components on the circuit boards that are no longer manufactured and no old stock anywhere. It is tough to repair if you cannot get the parts.

As far as customer service, what is worse? Them saying send it in to us with you paying the freight. Then you get a call saying cannot repair at any price because there are no parts, what is your shipping billing number for us to ship it back. Or Meade saying cannot repair the machine, but we can offer you a new one.

Astronomy is not a mass consumer market that can drive manufacturing. And even if it were, the consumer electronic industry assumes 18 month obsolesence.

Edited by wd8sbb (01/09/14 07:17 PM)


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