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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences
      #5794691 - 04/12/13 03:00 PM

For those who have the SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT, aside from the cord-wrap issue, I'm curious about any other experiences/ opinions.
Also,
is there a difference between the SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT or the SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT GPS?

Are they available in the U.S.?

What about the drive belts? From some of the pictures I've seen, it looks like the mount is gear/belt driven. All drive belts stretch immediately, so has that been a problem?


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Mike X.
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 06/28/10

Loc: Greece-Athens and Rome-Italy
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5794737 - 04/12/13 03:23 PM

My experience so far , even if limited because i have the mount only for 2 weeks, is very positive.
I bought it for DSO AP so mostly EQ use.
Unfortunatelly i didn't had neither time nor good weather for testing the mount as i would like to and bring you some data/photos...i hope to be able to do so soon.


Edited by Mike X. (04/12/13 03:25 PM)


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Vagus
member


Reged: 04/02/11

Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Mike X.]
      #5795197 - 04/12/13 06:46 PM

I'm curious too. After reading the mostly positive threads about it here on CN, I'm considering buying one for a portable rig. Anyone done any AP with it yet?

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Jack Huerkamp
Vendor - Waning Moon


Reged: 10/13/05

Loc: Louisiana
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Vagus]
      #5795340 - 04/12/13 08:36 PM

I posted this review to KW Telescope in Kitchener, Canada where I purchased my mount from:

AZ-EQ6 Exceeds Expectations Review by MallinCam Jack

I received my AZ-EQ6 in early December, 2012 and finally got a chance to put it through its paces at a star party the weekend of April 5th. I set it up in Alt-Az mode and mounted my C9.25 OTA on it along with a Celestron f/6.3 focal reducer. Instead of eyepieces, I was using my MallinCam Xtreme and MFR-4 focal reducer. After a two star alignment on Sirius and Capella each night, I started looking at DSO's. The GoTo operations put most targets onto the small CCD sensor and once on target, the tracking was exceptional. I was amazed to find out that I could do 2 minute exposures on most targets without star trailing. For an Alt-Az, unguided mount, this is incredible. I really should have tried going longer than 2 minutes to see when field rotation started being noticed; but I was running out of the ability to lower the brightness on the monitor. With the stability and tracking ability in Alt-Az mode, I may use the EQ mode far less than originally anticipated.

Jack Huerkamp (Posted on 4/11/13)

I sent Brian Dernesch an update today after looking at the DVDs recorded on a larger monitor. Field rotation is obvious in the 2 minutes on the larger monitor while it was not seen on the 9" I was using while observing. With that said, the mount tracked well and if I had been set up in EQ mode, the field rotation seen in the Al/Az mounted videos would not have been there.

The next time out with the mount, I will try the EQ mount.

I am so glad that I returned the other dual mode mount that I had purchased that could not support more than a 6" SCT and got this mount. Its fit and finish is outstanding.

Jack Huerkamp


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5795343 - 04/12/13 08:41 PM

1. The GPS is just an add-on module. If you have a cell phone and reception wherever you observe, then you would not need the extra module. You can quickly enter your position from the cell phone info.

2. They are not available in the U.S. You can order them from Canada but UPS will charge you about $100 to ship it across the border. You can get Orion's version in the U.S., the Atlas Pro AZ-EQ6-GT which should be the same. It is black instead of white.

3. I don't know about the belts. Someone commented here on that a few months ago and said it would not be a problem. The mount slews are very quiet with the belts.

4. Using the polar scope was a little difficult because of the reticle display it gives you. It is basically a small circle with crosshairs. It is difficult to determine where along the circle to position Polaris if it is not near the crosshairs. However, the latest firmware upgrade (v3.34) brought back the hour-angle of Polaris which allows you to use the RA setting circle to position Polaris more accurately.

5. I found the All-Star polar alignment did not work very well for me. It could be my issue. I am working basically in Alt-Az because I do a lot of public star parties where quick setup and alignment are needed. I may try EQ again when a new firmware update comes out that addresses the cord wrap issue. v3.34 mentions something about removing a feature regarding polar alignment. I am not sure exactly what this was referring to.

6. It is well built and well designed. The clutches are very accessible and large making them easy to use. The Altitude adjuster is also easy to use. Switching from EQ to Alt-Az is very easy.


JohnD


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5799141 - 04/14/13 07:10 PM

Evidently this mount must be relatively new.

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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5799860 - 04/15/13 03:19 AM

It just became available late last year.

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Mike X.
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 06/28/10

Loc: Greece-Athens and Rome-Italy
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5799869 - 04/15/13 03:56 AM

It is very new indeed.
I's based on the old and trusty NEQ6/Atlas on many aspects,which was a point in it's favor that made me purchase it, but i think it's on the market for no more than 6/7 months.


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frolinmod
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/06/10

Loc: Southern California
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Mike X.]
      #5800835 - 04/15/13 03:28 PM

Thanks guys for reporting the cord wrap problem to Sky-Watcher. You've saved me the trouble. It's the only "problem" I've had with the mount so far and will be nice to have fixed.

By the way guys, the same GPS hocky puck that works with the rest of the EQ line works with the AZ-EQ6. So if you already have one, you don't need yet another one. Just re-use the one you already have. It only needs to be plugged in during initialization and can then be removed and used with another mount.


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: frolinmod]
      #5811755 - 04/20/13 08:53 PM

Anyone else notice that the goto accuracy of this great mount when in alt az mode worsens as the object nears zenith?

Is this kind of normal for an alt az mount?
Object still in the FOV just to the upper edge


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frolinmod
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/06/10

Loc: Southern California
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5816560 - 04/22/13 11:26 PM

Make sure you're well balanced as the motors can't handle a major imbalance and the mount won't complain either, just act wonky.

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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: frolinmod]
      #5816917 - 04/23/13 07:16 AM

Finding it very difficult to get perfect balance in az
Use 2 scopes and to test have to take everything off and set up in eq mode and reattach scopes and test for balance in RA.....cant get it perfect all the way around in RA......perfect balance in alt however...

How about if i keep her in altaz mode and drop a tripod leg a couple inches...then loosen az clutch and see if it stays still?


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ManuelJ
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/19/05

Loc: Madrid, Spain
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5816923 - 04/23/13 07:29 AM

Quote:

Finding it very difficult to get perfect balance in az
Use 2 scopes and to test have to take everything off and set up in eq mode and reattach scopes and test for balance in RA.....cant get it perfect all the way around in RA......perfect balance in alt however...

How about if i keep her in altaz mode and drop a tripod leg a couple inches...then loosen az clutch and see if it stays still?




It's hard or impossible to maintain balance in AZ. The best is to put the gear un EQ mode, and make some marks to help you the next time.

Although if you change an eyepiece, you will be out of balance.

Your tripod leg trick seems dangerous, don't you think? :-)


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5817327 - 04/23/13 12:10 PM

Is it soooo critical for perfect balance in az?.....doesnt it help backlash if theres a bit of imbalance in the system?

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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5819123 - 04/24/13 04:32 AM

Noticed last night how important really good levelling is to help better goto accuracy

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biz
Vendor


Reged: 11/08/09

Loc: New Zealand
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5820147 - 04/24/13 04:16 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Finding it very difficult to get perfect balance in az
Use 2 scopes and to test have to take everything off and set up in eq mode and reattach scopes and test for balance in RA.....cant get it perfect all the way around in RA......perfect balance in alt however...

How about if i keep her in altaz mode and drop a tripod leg a couple inches...then loosen az clutch and see if it stays still?




It's hard or impossible to maintain balance in AZ. The best is to put the gear un EQ mode, and make some marks to help you the next time.

Although if you change an eyepiece, you will be out of balance.

Your tripod leg trick seems dangerous, don't you think? :-)



Manuel.
The shorten one leg trick for alt/az RA balancing has been around for a long time is completely safe and works like a charm.. After you have the mount in Alt/Az position and you have the tube balanced fore and aft, just lift(shorten) one leg by no more than 2 inches and undo the relative clutch, gravity will pull the heavier side down, just apply weights until it doesn't. Then reposition the leg, job done. The mount will not fall over if that's what you are worried about.
cheers.
Graham.


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: biz]
      #5820162 - 04/24/13 04:25 PM

Hi Graham

Howard here

Man....I love this Az eq6 mount....much more better than the mt pro even with all your mods!


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5832100 - 04/30/13 11:59 AM

Any suggestions/experience on White Skywatcher version vs black Orion version?

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frolinmod
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 08/06/10

Loc: Southern California
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5832259 - 04/30/13 12:54 PM

The black version gets quite hot in the sun during the day. You might want to get the white version if you'll be using the mount often during the daytime.

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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5833735 - 05/01/13 06:57 AM

Quote:

Any suggestions/experience on White Skywatcher version vs black Orion version?




You would have to order the white version from Canada since it is not available in the U.S.

I did an outreach event Saturday evening with a Mallincam Xtreme attached to my C-8 mounted on my AZ-EQ6 in Az Mode. I was getting very good pointing after aligning with Sirius and Arcturus. I was using a computer, sitting on a table a few feet from the scope, to run the camera and view its output. I have replaced the hand controller cable with a standard 15 ft RJ45 network cable that allowed me to run the scope from the table as well. I was really happy with the way things worked. Those two stars seem to give the mount good pointing. When Sirius disappears and don't know what star the HC will give me. I have purchased an iPhone app (ALTitude AZimuth ALIGNment) which gives you better alignment stars. It gives you a pair of stars that have a line between them that passes close to your zenith. The further away the stars are from one another the better and it does not give stars that are too low in the sky like the Synscan HC sometimes does. I will be using the app in the future.

JohnD


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5835263 - 05/01/13 09:25 PM

Lots of good information and insight. Hopefully in coming weeks, I will be able to relay some experience, since I just placed an order for one today, the white version from Canada. It was $210.00 to ship to Central Pa. I had seen during my research that it had a 5 year warranty. After I placed the order, the warranty was listed as 2 years.
Thanks much all.


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5842504 - 05/05/13 09:28 PM

Is there a software program that will control this mount from a laptop? Just noticed there's no mention of any on the Skywatcher site, other than the Firmware.

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Skrenlin
member


Reged: 12/13/10

Loc: North Chicagoland area
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5842644 - 05/05/13 11:01 PM

I think EQMOD was made for the synscan mounts.

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ManuelJ
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/19/05

Loc: Madrid, Spain
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Skrenlin]
      #5843014 - 05/06/13 07:17 AM

I have problems setting the mount in AZ. In EQ it's plug and play.

AZ: align on first star, slew to the second star and the mount does not point to it. If I point manually to the second star, obviously it doesn't work.

Same config than in EQ mode, tried to play with time, no luck. Encoders activated and deactivated.

Terrible experience!.


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5844940 - 05/07/13 05:48 AM

Quote:

I have problems setting the mount in AZ. In EQ it's plug and play.

AZ: align on first star, slew to the second star and the mount does not point to it. If I point manually to the second star, obviously it doesn't work.

Same config than in EQ mode, tried to play with time, no luck. Encoders activated and deactivated.

Terrible experience!.




Manuel,

1. What telescope are you using?

2. What firmware version do you have?

3. How is the telescope oriented when you start?

4. What is normally the first star you use? How are you going to the first star? Do you manually move it or use the hand controller to move it?

5. What is the 2nd star that the mount gives you? How far off is the 2nd star? Is it within the finderscope view?

JohnD


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ManuelJ
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/19/05

Loc: Madrid, Spain
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5844969 - 05/07/13 06:31 AM

1. Tec Mak, or AP traveler
2. 3.34
3. Random, the manual says there is no specific position needed
4. A star on the East, or South, tried with several. Manually and with the motors.
5. The mount gives you several. i.e. Polaris and Sirius. After alignment of Sirius, the mount thinks polaris in on the cenit

Thanks,
Manuel.


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5845754 - 05/07/13 02:19 PM

Quote:

1. Tec Mak, or AP traveler
2. 3.34
3. Random, the manual says there is no specific position needed
4. A star on the East, or South, tried with several. Manually and with the motors.
5. The mount gives you several. i.e. Polaris and Sirius. After alignment of Sirius, the mount thinks polaris in on the cenit

Thanks,
Manuel.




Manuel,

1. Are you using the Bright Star or 2-Star alignment?
2. Your answer to #5 confused me. Please explain a little more. What is the first star? What is the second star? When it slews to the second star, where is it pointing? You said it thinks Polaris is in the center. Is that what the HC display is telling you?
3. You are aware that in the Az alignment, you get two prompts from the HC for the first star. The first tells you to move the scope to that star. The second tells you to center the star. Once centered and you hit enter, it will present the second star.
4. At any point did you tell it to start alignment from the "Home" position? If the home position is not set, it can go in some strange directions when you tell it to slew to a star.

JohnD


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ManuelJ
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/19/05

Loc: Madrid, Spain
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5845939 - 05/07/13 03:27 PM

Quote:

Manuel,

1. Are you using the Bright Star or 2-Star alignment?
2. Your answer to #5 confused me. Please explain a little more. What is the first star? What is the second star? When it slews to the second star, where is it pointing? You said it thinks Polaris is in the center. Is that what the HC display is telling you?
3. You are aware that in the Az alignment, you get two prompts from the HC for the first star. The first tells you to move the scope to that star. The second tells you to center the star. Once centered and you hit enter, it will present the second star.
4. At any point did you tell it to start alignment from the "Home" position? If the home position is not set, it can go in some strange directions when you tell it to slew to a star.

JohnD




1. Both, but in my example I use Bright Star
2. I choose the first star on the south, for example. Let's say I choose Spica. I move the scope to Spica, push enter, then the mount tells me to center, I center it and push enter again. Then it gives me another star to choose (all recommended by the mount algorithm), let's say I choose Polaris. Then, the mount points to -20 degrees, and tells me to center Polaris in the eyepiece.
3. Yes :-)
4. Home position?. The manual says there is not any home position needed, that is for EQ.

Thanks!,
Manuel.


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5846314 - 05/07/13 06:37 PM

Manuel

Use 2 star alignment
You are doing something very wrong with what i think i can understand from your posts

My az eq6 aligns in 2 minutes and gotos are wonderful except right at zenith

I use procyon or sirius as my first star..i manually slew to this and center it...then i choose arcturus for example as the 2nd star as its far away ...the mount slews itself very close to arcturus...i center and click enter and thats it ...job done

Make certain your coordinates are entered fine, u are in az mode in the hand control, the time is right, daylight saving is on.


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5846317 - 05/07/13 06:39 PM

Oh and make sure your mount is very level and the scope is well balanced

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ManuelJ
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/19/05

Loc: Madrid, Spain
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5856823 - 05/13/13 03:46 AM

Finally make it work, it was going in the wrong direction. Rotated the DEC by 180 degrees and it started to work.

This seems a bug to me.

Regards,
Manuel.


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: ManuelJ]
      #5861026 - 05/14/13 09:48 PM

Glad you got it working. Meanwhile my AZ-EQ6 just arrived today. Dang, very impressive and well machined.

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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5861798 - 05/15/13 10:11 AM

I ordered the 8" extension tube, which comes with a set of bearings. There aren't any instructions or Illustrations anywhere on how to attach the Extension to the Tripod or the mount. I have an email in to Skywatcher.

The manual addresses the "Balance in AZ Mode" on page 10 of the manual.


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HowardK
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 10/20/10

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5862159 - 05/15/13 01:06 PM

Lurch

Why do u need the extension?


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LTE
member


Reged: 12/15/12

Loc: Scotland
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5862475 - 05/15/13 03:41 PM

I had a similar experience as Manuel, until I started with the telescope on the right (West) of the mount when pointing North so that the telescope moved to point higher in the sky when I pressed the top altitude button. Not a fault, but the instructions err in saying there is no home position.

Tom.


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: LTE]
      #5863910 - 05/16/13 08:49 AM

Don't quite understand that. When I start I have the scope on the East side of the mount and pointing North with the saddle locking knobs pointing up. I then manually move to the initial alignment star, center it, pick the second star and it goes to it.

JohnD


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5866924 - 05/17/13 11:35 AM

I did some in-door testing, just practicing with the Goto. Man this machine runs like a precision instrument. I like it.! This after trying to use the old Meade DS-114 on the Meade tripod and Autostar.

And, an anomaly; With use of the 8" extension tube, the RJ-45 cord for the Hand Controller is too short to hang correctly in the accessory tray.

Anyway, for know, i'm actually going to attach my old meade Relector which is just about 3 ft long. It seemed like without the extension tube it would hit the legs, while rotating almost straight up.

Case in point; for anyone doing similar, my Dealer told me that 2 dovetail bars come with they unit. I ordered the tube rings, but the AZ-EQ6 does not come with dovetail bars.
So, the Dealer is sending me 2 bars , no charge, but it took almost 2 weeks for the mount to get here.


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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5866933 - 05/17/13 11:39 AM

Power supply; Almost impossible to find a 15 volt supply, so gave up on that.
I'm determining that a 13.8 volt, Switching AC to DC supply is ideal. Ideal amps that i'm looking for are 6-10amps. Trying to find one with the cigarette Lighter Adapter, because that is all that is supplied with the AZ-EQ6. But, so far it looks like the only power supplies with the Lighter Adaptor are Linear not Switching or "Switch-Mode".


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johnpd
sage


Reged: 04/13/08

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5868860 - 05/18/13 06:54 AM

Lurch,

1. The Hand Controller cord length is an issue. I don't know why they give you such a short cord. You can replace it with a standard RJ-45 ethernet cable.

2. I don't know why the dealer told you the mount comes with two dovetail bars. Maybe you misunderstood him. It does have a saddle which can handle either the Vixen or Losmandy-D dovetails.

3 For a power supply, I recommend something like this:

Pyramid 13.8v Power Supply

I think there is a 5amp one also which may work. I have used it to run Celestron mounts as well as the AZ-EQ6.

JohnD


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TMSP
member


Reged: 07/21/12

Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5870026 - 05/18/13 07:55 PM

As to power supply, you might consider the MFJ Super Battery Booster. Made for portable ham radios, it takes 12V and boost to 13.9V. I use it with my portable 12V battery and it seems to do the trick. From MFJ Enterprises model MFJ-4416B. About $150. Clear Skys

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Lurch
member


Reged: 04/09/12

Loc: Central Pa.
Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: TMSP]
      #5870257 - 05/18/13 09:16 PM

Yes, Johnpd, I saw many of the Pyramids and i'm thinkin 5-10 amps, but I want the ones that have the Cigarette Lighter Adapter, so it fits the Skywatcher screw on power plug nicely, but everyone that I looked at is a "Linear" power supply. Skywatcher manual recommends a "Switching" type power supply and I'm not sure what the consequences are. All of the Switching supplies that I saw have only the wire nut connectors, so it makes me wonder if a "Switching" supply can't support a cigarette Lighter Adaptor for a connection. Must have looked at 30 of them. I know little of electronics.

Will also check out the MFJ.

Johnpd, are you using the Pyramid with the CL Adapter?

No, all of my Dealer contact was via email where he mentioned the dovetail bars and later that he was mistaken. He's sending some free ones, so ok by me.
BTW the Pyramid link points to an article about a Merger between Meade and some other company.


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jrcrillyAdministrator
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5870294 - 05/18/13 09:28 PM

Quote:

Skywatcher manual recommends a "Switching" type power supply and I'm not sure what the consequences are.




Either will work, though the switcher will offer lower noise and higher efficiency. The big difference is that the switcher is much safer if the device powered is expensive and/or delicate (telescope mounts are generally both). The most common failure mode for a linear supply results in 20 volts or more at the output. Any failure in a switcher results in low or no voltage output rather than too much. No big deal if you are powering a spotlight - but your mount may be worth more. I know mine is; I use only switchers.


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LTE
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5874028 - 05/20/13 03:42 PM

Sorry, johnpd is right: when the telescope is on the right hand side of the mount pointing North, it is of course on the East side of the mount, not West. After 35 years in the S Hemisphere and already 12 back in the North, I still sometimes get things the wrong way round!

Tom.


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #5874032 - 05/20/13 03:45 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Skywatcher manual recommends a "Switching" type power supply and I'm not sure what the consequences are.




Either will work, though the switcher will offer lower noise and higher efficiency. The big difference is that the switcher is much safer if the device powered is expensive and/or delicate (telescope mounts are generally both). The most common failure mode for a linear supply results in 20 volts or more at the output. Any failure in a switcher results in low or no voltage output rather than too much. No big deal if you are powering a spotlight - but your mount may be worth more. I know mine is; I use only switchers.




Well, sorta. A switching power supply can do a good job, and doesn't need a big transformer, but switching power supplies are notoriously noisy. Those were NOT real birdies I heard on my buddy's Icom in his shack where he uses a Chinese switching power supply.

Linear power supplies are still quieter and more reliable, which is why my shack has a big ol' Astron 35 amp job in it.


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5875969 - 05/21/13 01:44 PM

I'm getting very disappointed with the Skywatcher Support, right off the bat. I seem to have to send 2 emails to get an answer. The first email draws some nonsensical response. Then a second email, gets me an answer. I hope this isn't a sin of things to come.

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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5880063 - 05/23/13 11:47 AM

As for power supplies, I looked all over and found the
MFJ-4128 Switching Power Supply, 13.8 Volt, 28amp with connectors and a 7 Amp Cigarette Lighter Adapter. It had everything I wanted. $80.00 plus $11.00 shipping.


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: LTE]
      #5888612 - 05/28/13 10:01 AM

My dovetails are still not due to arrive until later this week and I was determined to use this mount over Memorial Day weekend. So I spent most of the day making my own dovetail(for another thread). Set the mount up Saturday night, turn on the power, SynScan Handset lights up, with a Blank, red screen and that's it, nothing else. Apparently this is a common problem with these, dating back to at least 2008.

I did the diagnosis with the Test Plugs and get the COMM2 ERROR, so apparently it's just the RJ-45 Port, but still means a new handset and another 2 weeks of waiting.

So, I'm thinking without the Handset, this thing may be a Lawn Ornament. There must be a way to use this direct from a PC. So I checked out the articles about EQMOD and it looks like EQMOD can control the mount without the Handset, using one of the EQdirct adaptors.
I have an email in to Skywatcher asking if they are compatible, so the warranty isn't voided.


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: LTE]
      #5888614 - 05/28/13 10:02 AM

As for Power Supply;
Here's the response from Skywatcher;

There is no problem to use a linear power supply. We recommend a switching power just because it is more energy efficient and it weighs much less.


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5904655 - 06/05/13 08:16 PM

I'm having a problem with alignment using EQMOD, using Stellarium for indoor testing.
I'm starting off with home at AZ=0 , Alt=0, Scope on the right, pointing north, switches and mount ports on south side, locking knobs on the dovetails upright. The bubble level is on the south side also.

I pick a star from Stellarium, directly behind me(south), hit ctl-1 and scope turns around appears to be pointing the opposite direction and pointing down or upside down.

I have to be setting something wrong.

Iv'e read about deactivating encoders and re-orientating Az axis 180 deg.


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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5905371 - 06/06/13 07:45 AM

Lurch,

1. Does it work when you use the hand controller and not EQMOD?
2. Is there an Az/Eq option in EQMOD when you start it up so it knows which method to use?

JohnD


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5905621 - 06/06/13 10:12 AM

Hi John,

My Handset was sent to Skywatcher for repair / replacement 3 days after I got it, so I just don't know about that.

I don't see any kind of option on the EQMOD GUI about an AZ/EQ option, although I just started using it.


I'll see if I can post some screenshots of EQMOD

There is an AZ/EQ option in Stellarium and as far as I can tell it's set to AZ. But, whenever I start Stellarium, the telescope indicator is always pointing at Polaris, whether in AZ or EQ mode


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5905628 - 06/06/13 10:18 AM

AFAIK, EQMOD will _only_ work with the mount in EQ mode.

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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5905663 - 06/06/13 10:33 AM

Ahh, Ok, that explains a lot. Hence the name "EQ Mod".

Well, I'm guessing I won't get a Handset for about a month.
So is there some other program to drive this thing in Alt-Az Mode?

I'm guessing that Stellarium won't drive it by itself.


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5905720 - 06/06/13 10:53 AM

No. Stellarium must work with either the HC or EQMOD. You can talk to Chris about EQMOD and the alt-az mode on the EQMOD Yahoogroup...he may be in the process of enabling that in EQMOD. But the quick solution for now to allow you to use your mount is put it in EQ mode.

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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5905749 - 06/06/13 11:02 AM

Sky Safari
SKY FI

drives the mount in altaz

If this helps


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5905860 - 06/06/13 12:14 PM

Quote:

Sky Safari
SKY FI

drives the mount in altaz

If this helps




Not if it's not connected to the HC, it doesn't.


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HowardK
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5905944 - 06/06/13 01:00 PM

True, Unc

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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: HowardK]
      #5906800 - 06/06/13 08:20 PM

Dang, Is there any Astronomy program that will run this mount without EQMOD and without a Hand Controller?

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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5907447 - 06/07/13 08:11 AM

Quote:

Dang, Is there any Astronomy program that will run this mount without EQMOD and without a Hand Controller?




Nope. Only EQMOD. Which will work with your mount in EQ mode.


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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5907456 - 06/07/13 08:17 AM

Has anyone had any issues with GoTo of objects near the zenith? I had my Mallincam Xtreme hooked up to my C-8 and I was wandering around the sky (in AZ Mode). When I tried objects near the zenith, I was off. Anywhere else it was fine.

JohnD


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HowardK
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5907491 - 06/07/13 08:41 AM

Yup

In altaz mode the mount goes a little crazee near zenith..both tracking and gotos...everywhere else it's great..

Can someone explain why?


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5907512 - 06/07/13 08:56 AM

Quote:

Has anyone had any issues with GoTo of objects near the zenith? I had my Mallincam Xtreme hooked up to my C-8 and I was wandering around the sky (in AZ Mode). When I tried objects near the zenith, I was off. Anywhere else it was fine.

JohnD




"Zenith" can be a problem area for go-to scopes. Syncing is an option "PAE"...


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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5907565 - 06/07/13 09:29 AM

Thanks Rod. I have not tried PAE yet. I guess I will have to now.

JohnD


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5907623 - 06/07/13 09:56 AM

Also, be very scrupulous about choosing alignment stars...do exactly as the manual suggests.

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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5907625 - 06/07/13 09:59 AM

Thanks Rod, John, Howard,
Well, at least I don't have to waste anymore time searching and testing. I think someone "upstairs" is trying to force me to learn and use EQ mode. I could never get my head wrapped around the Polar alignment thing. Now I have no choice.
Another lesson is maybe have a back-up Hand Controller.


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5907626 - 06/07/13 10:00 AM

You'll find polar mode easy enough, and EQMOD has a polar alignment "helper" that works very well.

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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5908454 - 06/07/13 05:51 PM

Quote:

Also, be very scrupulous about choosing alignment stars...do exactly as the manual suggests.




I use the suggestions from an iPhone/iPad app that gives me two alignment stars. A line between them goes through or nearly through the zenith. It has been working very well.

JohnD


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5908703 - 06/07/13 08:15 PM

Well, Rod, sure enough, even though I don't fully understand it, the polar alignment went ok. The mount appears to work like a champ. I'm only testing indoors with stormy weather outside, but the mount looks like it's pointing my scope exactly where it's supposed to.
The cord wrap issue must be fixed because the scope will reverse directions to get around without wrapping cords.
Appears to handle Zenith assignments well.

Is there an ideal eye-piece position for EQ? Because many times it ends up pointing out sideways from the scope. Now for some clear skies.


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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5909265 - 06/08/13 07:10 AM

Quote:

Thanks Rod. I have not tried PAE yet. I guess I will have to now.




How does PAE work? I see you use PAE to align to a "reference" star near the zenith (or wherever you want to establish a PAE), then go to your object.

1. If later (lets say a couple of hours) you want to go back to that same area, do you need to repeat the process (establish another reference star) or does the mount now magically know how to adjust for that area of the sky? In other words, is the PAE linked to a reference star or an area of the sky.

2. For any area without a PAE, does the mount default to the results of the initial 2-star alignment or do you have to set up PAEs for everywhere? The manual seems to indicate that it picks up the 2-star alignment calibration in the rest of the sky.

JohnD


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5909386 - 06/08/13 09:02 AM

In polar mode, PAE should work just like "sync" on other mounts AFAIK.

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DuiA1
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5911557 - 06/09/13 03:45 PM

Johnd, which iphone app are you referring to for the alignment stars? Thx

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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: DuiA1]
      #5912382 - 06/10/13 01:58 AM

Quote:

Johnd, which iphone app are you referring to for the alignment stars? Thx




ALTitude AZimuth ALIGNment. Here is their website. AltAzAlign

JohnD


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rmollise
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5912580 - 06/10/13 08:38 AM

Quote:

Quote:

Johnd, which iphone app are you referring to for the alignment stars? Thx




ALTitude AZimuth ALIGNment. Here is their website. AltAzAlign

JohnD




Be aware that the SynScans have some alignment requirements that may not be taken into account by this software. For example, in a three star (EQ) alignment, it is more important for the first two stars to be well separated in RA than in azimuth. Let the manual be your guide here...


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: rmollise]
      #5927574 - 06/18/13 01:49 PM

AZ-EQ6 Jackscrew Jammed.
Anyone run into this and if so how did you fix it?
I was attaching my scope and balancing the mount, getting ready to actually take it outside for the first time and use it. I was adjusting the Jackscrew and at about 60 -70 degrees, it got bound up and couldn't turn. It will go in or out about 1/2 turn and is then jammed. Sounds like metal grinding and I saw some very fine metal grindings around the screw. From the outside, mechanically, it looks fine. It' just a simple threaded bolt and a "specialty" type Nut. I can't imagine what could be wrong with it. Haven't even had a chance to use it outside yet.


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Vagus
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5928315 - 06/18/13 09:44 PM

If I recall correctly, the manual says you are supposed to dismount the scope and counterweights before switching between Eq and Alt/AZ. If you didn't do that, it wouldn't surprise me to hear the jackscrew was binding.

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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Vagus]
      #5928370 - 06/18/13 10:39 PM

As far I know, I was already in EQ mode and stayed in that mode.
-Counterweights were on
-Put scope on
-balancing in both directions.
- then on pg 8 was adjusting the R.A. axis elevations and watching how it worked using the Jackscrew.
I'm at a loss in more ways than one.


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Orboos
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5928583 - 06/19/13 01:26 AM

From my experience with mounts they all come (regardless of price) "dry" as a bone. When I got my AZ-EQ6 first thing I did I brushed some grease on
the jackscrew and the main screw between mount and tripod.
In your case I think damage is already done and the only option left is to contact SW and arrange replacement of the jackscrew and the nut.
This mount is amazing, very high quality build, but makes me sad that it can be brought down by lack of little grease which costs "nothing". I hope you will get this problem solved and enjoy clear sky.


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johnpd
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5928589 - 06/19/13 01:32 AM

Lurch,

Sorry to hear that. You have to be careful about jacking the mount up with weight on it especially as far up as you were going. If I store my mount on a case, I usually have it set in EQ Mode. When I take it out for use, I normally switch to AZ Mode with no weights or scope on the mount. So far I have had no issues with the jackscrew. I hope you can get it straightened out.

JohnD


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Lurch
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: johnpd]
      #5928594 - 06/19/13 01:45 AM

I had wondered if it was lubed, but figured I better not mess with it. In the meantime I put a couple drops of oil on the threads and was able to free it up a little, but damage is already done. I contacted the Dealer and waiting for a reply. Doesn't look to hard to replace.
But have been able to do a full test otherwise in doors and YES, it is amazing. Moves like a robotic arm. I should still be able to use it until the parts come.


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KonstantinK
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Lurch]
      #5942715 - 06/27/13 09:15 AM

Finally, I have received my AZ-EQ6. First impression was that it looked great in comparison with its predecessor. It is really so. But one fact seems to be disappointing - significant backlash in RA worm-gear. It can be noticed easily.
In EQ6 this backlash can easily be eliminated by two torx bolts.
I am not sure if the mechanism in AZ-EQ6 is the same. Could anyone confirm or disprove the existence of the backlash? How it can be eliminated in AZ-EQ6?
Also I have found two torx bolts outside housing in the area near the each large pulley - what is the use for??

PS
Problem with backlash solved in "EQ6 style". Other questions are still actual.

Edited by KonstantinK (06/27/13 04:22 PM)


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Mike X.
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: KonstantinK]
      #5943487 - 06/27/13 05:30 PM

It's the same,i have eliminated backlash on mine on both RA and DEC just like you would do it on a standart NEQ6/Atlas.

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Mike X.
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Mike X.]
      #5943488 - 06/27/13 05:31 PM

Ps: I just saw your PS,i'm glad you solved the backlash "issue"

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KonstantinK
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: Mike X.]
      #5943610 - 06/27/13 06:43 PM

I am waiting for the clear sky!!! )
Today I've made noise measurement - AZ-EQ6 vs EQ6 belt mod. AZ-EQ6 produces 72-74dB running at maximum rate. EQ6 produced 66-68dB running at the same speed. But... At ending or at starting, AZ-EQ6 produced only 76-78dB, while EQ6 made 80-82dB.
But the sound of AZ-EQ6 seems to be more convenient


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northernontario
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Re: SkyWatcher AZ-EQ6 GT Experiences new [Re: KonstantinK]
      #6023025 - 08/13/13 01:58 PM

Hello.

I recently bought the AZ NEQ6 GT.

Could some one tell me how I go about registering this product in Canada for the warranty.

Thanks

jake


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