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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: jmiele]
      #5361703 - 08/10/12 01:11 PM

Hi Guys,
I am glad David is happy with his mount.
As for me I am not happy with mine. I bought this expecting a mount that was better than my LXD75 for AP in polar. My LXD75 could handle 30lbs. and do 90sec. unguided with 30lbs.
My LX80 rated at 40lbs polar can barely handle 29lbs.

Last night my best images with round stars were 80sec. unguided, 23lbs refractor+camera, CanonT1i at 988fl. I had trails at 90-120 and 180sec.
At 29lbs I tried 45sec and 60 sec unguided, 2500fl with Canon T1i but still had trails.

My LXD75 can out perform my LX80 in polar. There are a number of people out there that are trying to decide between the LX80 and the CGEM for AP use. They are both rated at 40lbs. but the CGEM can handle an 11" ota plus guidescope and cameras for AP very good. When using 10 or 13lbs setup a smaller mount will work fine if you just want polar AP. My LX80 mount is in no way in the same weight handling class as a CGEM for AP.

My attempts guiding were not great. I hadn't used PHD in over a year and forgot how to fine tune it. I have reread the instructions now. It was 85deg with 99% humidity and no breeze at midnight and I was sweating too much but at about 10 and 21 minutes it would jump and come back but PHD did not regain control either time. But in between it guided, I just forgot all the details on improving it. But I should be able to get it now but as for the jumping I thought it was the springy wormblock before but not now. I had messed up lock but then restarted guiding right away and that jump still was around 10 minutes from the one before.
Have fun with your mount David.
neilson


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jmiele
Patron Saint?
*****

Reged: 12/04/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: neilson]
      #5361812 - 08/10/12 02:09 PM

Neilson, You and your concerns are the exact reason for my many rants throughout these MANY LX80/800 threads. I've always just wanted to make sure folks were getting the full story before purchasing this mount.

I wish we could have help ensure you had all the facts before spending your money. While the LX80 may do some good stuff in the end, it may be a tinkerers mount for a while....

Best,
Joe


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: jmiele]
      #5361922 - 08/10/12 03:07 PM

Hi Joe,
You are absolutely right, All I had were the pictures, listed specifications and the features write ups on the Meade website, and the advertisements and the instruction manual available on the Meade website. I tend to trust printed information from manufacturers on their products. Its usually accurate. I guess that's why I keep hoping Meade will find a way to get the max weight up to 40lbs like advertised and fix the PEC and other things.
neilson


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Starhawk
Space Ranger
*****

Reged: 09/16/08

Loc: Tucson, Arizona
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: neilson]
      #5361985 - 08/10/12 03:46 PM

Neilson,

I think you're talking about a future mount or switching to the CGEM. If anything, the payload rating on that one seems to be conservative. It handles my AP130 EDFGT (about 30 lbs with camera) just fine, as well as a C11 without a sweat. No Alt-Az mode. Hopefull we see more people take a crack at that dual-function capability in the future.

-Rich


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: Starhawk]
      #5362065 - 08/10/12 04:46 PM

Yea on the Celestron website under mounts click on the CGEM. It said it is rated at 40lbs and can handle up to the 11"ota vibration free for imaging. On this thread and on Astronomy Forums there are numerous times people state they are trying to decide between the LX80 or CGEM for an AP mount since both are rated at 40lbs and some state the LX80 has an extra feature Alt/Az plus is a little cheaper. But they need to be aware this mount isn't reaching the advertised 40lbs and doesn't do very well at 29lbs. with the 10"ota for visual.
neilson


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mmalik
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/13/12

Loc: USA
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: neilson]
      #5362125 - 08/10/12 05:25 PM

Quote:

My attempts guiding were not great. I hadn't used PHD in over a year and forgot how to fine tune it. I have reread the instructions now. It was 85deg with 99% humidity and no breeze at midnight and I was sweating too much but at about 10 and 21 minutes it would jump and come back but PHD did not regain control either time. But in between it guided, I just forgot all the details on improving it. But I should be able to get it now but as for the jumping I thought it was the springy wormblock before but not now. I had messed up lock but then restarted guiding right away and that jump still was around 10 minutes from the one before.




Quote:

@dmdouglass... When I get a “Jump”, I just throw that frame away.../-/...The “jump” happens in an instant, and the recovery process takes somewhere between 5-10 seconds. I have not confirmed that the “event” is at the worm period rate (about once every 10 min).

The guiding tests with PHD, and the Pempro run did not go well. When the “jump” occurs, the program loses the assigned target, and it does NOT recover. Thus, the data is useless. I think there is also a problem somewhere in the ASCOM driver. Things just don’t look right. But when I stop the programs from running, and open my imaging software, the targets are right where they are supposed to be. Very frustrating.




Neilson, this 10min jump you and David have been referring to, is this the same what Andrew has been referring to as broken PEC?

Andrew... your thoughts?


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: mmalik]
      #5362190 - 08/10/12 06:12 PM

I don't really know, maybe Andrew does but on mine you can see the star jump quickly out of the box in PHD then it slowly comes back. But PHD doesn't relock on to it. I thought it was the spring loaded wormgear but I have mine adjusted pretty tight now so I don't think its that.
neilson


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Meade Instr.
Vendor Meade Instruments


Reged: 09/13/11

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: neilson]
      #5362220 - 08/10/12 06:46 PM

We are currently working on the following firmware fixes for the LX80:

- PEC Training
- Guiding with Envisage Software

We don't have a release date, but it should be available in the near future.

Edited by Meade Instr. (08/10/12 06:46 PM)


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OzAndrewJ
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 11/30/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: mmalik]
      #5362290 - 08/10/12 07:32 PM

Gday Mr Malik

Quote:

Neilson, this 10min jump you and David have been referring to, is this the same what Andrew has been referring to as broken PEC?

Andrew... your thoughts?




Nope.
Unless PEC is ON, it will have no effect,
The PEC bug i refer to occurs mainly in training, and results in data being overwritten or written to the wrong locations.
A simple test is also to look at the PEC model using my app.
If it shows all zeroes, then its not PEC related.

Andrew


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dmdouglass
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/23/07

Loc: Tempe, AZ
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: OzAndrewJ]
      #5362470 - 08/10/12 09:12 PM

Updates of information from Meade…

First of all, and very importantly, hopefully everyone noticed the post just above which came directly from Meade. They are acknowledging the PEC issue. And (to my delight) they are acknowledging the Envisage problem.

PEC will affect all users of the Polar configuration. I don’t know if they are going to be working on just the 497, or include the other mounts too, such as the LX200. But this is progress, and we should be happy that it is being looked into.

The Envisage issue will be for those users who use a Meade DSI camera.

ADDITIONAL UPDATE:

I have just received an Email from Meade, asking for the return of the broken top plate parts, so that their engineering department can analyze the failure.

I think we all need to grasp what is happening here. Everyone has been very quick to judge Meade (mostly incorrectly from my prospective). This recent post, as well as the follow up on the failed part, show clearly that Meade does listen, and is actively listening, and responding in a positive manner.
Some of the people here might not like the “timing” of the responses. But the fact is, we are getting positive responses.

For what it is worth, I have also asked Meade to look over several of our recent posts regarding the weight limits that are stated for the LX80, and possibly comment on the difference between visual application, and AP applications (if any). Meade is under no obligation to make such a statement. They have posted a weight for configuration, but with no additional comment. Thus far, there has been no response, other than the acknowledgement of the question. It is important to note, again, that Meade may never answer that question. That will be a management decision.

I would like to point out that I have no affiliation with Meade, other than being a long time customer and user of their products. And a very happy customer at that. I seem to be able to communicate with them, and that is showing up here.


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Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362489 - 08/10/12 09:29 PM

Are you sure Meade would have reacted this way without what has gone on in the threads? maybe a little prodding is what they needed. Anyway I hope Meade gets it all worked out soon.

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dmdouglass
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/23/07

Loc: Tempe, AZ
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362503 - 08/10/12 09:34 PM

Hmmmmmm. I have been re-reading my post above. Sometimes words have have unintended meanings. I should clarify. I am NOT saying that Meade is looking into PEC or ENVISAGE because i asked them too..... At least not directly.

Yes, I have been talking with them. I have said that here in this thread. And I do believe that they have been following these threads. And we have been discussing PEC and Envisage here.....

I did speak to them directly about my tripod. And, as stated above, I did speak to them directly about the weight issue.

I am pleased that they want to look at the top plate. Current (and future) LX80 users will be interested in any results that may be gleaned, and possibly shared.

I am hopeful that Meade will respond on the weight limitation issue. We will have to wait and see.


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blueman
Photon Catcher
*****

Reged: 07/20/07

Loc: California
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362518 - 08/10/12 09:45 PM

It is great that Meade is looking into the problems. But To me it is a bit late, this should have been done prior to release of the mount. To deliver mounts that do not work (LX-80 and LX-800) and then to spend months looking in to the problems that occured after their release, is a bit backwark in my opinion. I hope for all involved that the fixes come soon and are effective.
Blueman


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dmdouglass
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/23/07

Loc: Tempe, AZ
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: blueman]
      #5362533 - 08/10/12 09:52 PM

Hi Blueman...

Better late than never.

And to everyone else (including Blueman...)

As I have said several times, I am not an engineer. And although I have been doing the astronomy thing for several years, I do not proclaim any knowledge in understand the PEC(PC) numbers. I have been trying to collect data, and get it posted, where others who do understand that data, can evaluate it, and post their responses.

Last night I posted that I did not think I could offer any data that would be useful, due to the collecting programs (PHD and Pempro) “stopping” when the “jump out of the box” incident occurs, which seems to be at the rate of the full worm period.

I am now wondering. Would there be any value to simply starting another sequence to collect additional time? Could that data (from the logs) be merged, and produce anything meaningful?? I do not know the answer, and just assumed (gets me into lots of trouble) that the answer was that continuous data was what was needed.

Looking for responses from those that might know the correct information


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blueman
Photon Catcher
*****

Reged: 07/20/07

Loc: California
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362548 - 08/10/12 10:07 PM

Run PHD, but do disable corrections and just record the data. OR, you could download PemPro and use it to do a recording so that the PE could be represented in Arc Seconds and the curves could be seen. Then perhaps it would be possible to see just how well the mount works and what the native PE actually might be.
Blueman
Quote:

Hi Blueman...

Better late than never.

And to everyone else (including Blueman...)

As I have said several times, I am not an engineer. And although I have been doing the astronomy thing for several years, I do not proclaim any knowledge in understand the PEC(PC) numbers. I have been trying to collect data, and get it posted, where others who do understand that data, can evaluate it, and post their responses.

Last night I posted that I did not think I could offer any data that would be useful, due to the collecting programs (PHD and Pempro) “stopping” when the “jump out of the box” incident occurs, which seems to be at the rate of the full worm period.

I am now wondering. Would there be any value to simply starting another sequence to collect additional time? Could that data (from the logs) be merged, and produce anything meaningful?? I do not know the answer, and just assumed (gets me into lots of trouble) that the answer was that continuous data was what was needed.

Looking for responses from those that might know the correct information




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Stew57
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/03/09

Loc: Silsbee Texas
Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: blueman]
      #5362567 - 08/10/12 10:23 PM

I agree with Blueman. just run phd and turn guide corrections off. Run for at least 2 worm rotations. the log file can be imported into PECprep. It will tell alot about the native PE and quite possiby the "jumping". I am thinking the jumping is something in the mechanicals and not the electronics (motor cards).

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OzAndrewJ
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 11/30/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: Stew57]
      #5362655 - 08/10/12 11:22 PM

Quote:

I am thinking the jumping is something in the mechanicals and not the electronics (motor cards).




I agree with Stew here.
Based on it being approx 10mins between jumps,
i am 99.93% sure its not the cards.
The prev bug showed up as jumps every few seconds.

Just a thought,
A PHD "unguided" log could show the exact timing between jumps
even if it loses the plot on one run, it can reacquire until it jumps again.
The timestamp of each jump could be used to detect the period.
The true worm period is 9mins 20secs, and if that matches,
then it indicates a mechanical issue in the worm or final output gear.

How long does it take to do the "jump"/"ooze back" ????
Have you seen it visually on the screen???
A thought, the wormwheel is now a proper enveloped worm.
What if the worm doesnt transition "cleanly" when making or breaking contact with the wormwheel? Ie say the outer edge of the worm catches on something when making contact giving a sharp jump, and as it moves through, it drops back into normal contact.
When it jumps, which way does it go, ie does it accelerate to the west and ooze back, or does it go East first??

Andrew


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking new [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362670 - 08/10/12 11:32 PM

Very good Meade,
I said that I believed they would address these issues if enough people brought it to their attention. I believe we have done that here. While they haven't addressed the weight issue in polar mode I believe they will. I have to believe they actually expected this mount to be able to handle the 40 lbs in polar that they published. And I believe they didn't know it wasn't because polar wasn't working when we got them.
I believe they will figure out a way to get it working because they sold me this 10" 29lbs ota with my LX80 as a package and I don't think they expected me to just use it in Alt/Az. And why use polar if your not going to image.

I was getting tired of people with small very light telescopes telling me a mount only works at 1/2 its max for AP just because some other company was over rating their smallest mounts. Meade didn't do that before why should I expect them to now. That would of meant since this was barely working visual at 29lbs it was only good for AP at almost 15lbs. I just don't think Meade intended that.

I had been holding back and just listing facts as I experienced on my Meade LXD75 and my LX80 mounts and Meades published specifications, and well known info. on the CGEM. But now that Meade has stepped up to the plate and shown their intentions to fix PEC I am not just hoping but I actually believe that Meade will correct the 40lbs in polar problem and that after its fixed I will be able to image with my LX80 and 10"ota that came with it in polar. At least with my Canon T1i and Meade 6.3 focal reducer. I don't expect f/10 with my DSI IIC.

Thank you Meade for advising us of your intentions to fix PEC and Env. guiding. I know you will. And I look forward to your correcting the inability to handle your published 40lb max in polar. I know you will fix it too. And I really like the LX80 mount!
Neilson Shepard
I'm a long time Meade guy, below lists my current collection

LX80 10"
LX200ACF 10"
LXD75 SN10"
LX3 2120 10"
ES AR152mm refractor / celestron 60AZ & 70AZ
DSI PRO DSI IIC Canon T1i 2x 2"99% diagonals 2"flip mirror
Many Meade eyepieces & TV
Many Meade accessaries and some other brands


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dmdouglass
professor emeritus


Reged: 12/23/07

Loc: Tempe, AZ
Re: LX80 RA Tracking [Re: neilson]
      #5362678 - 08/10/12 11:39 PM Attachment (8 downloads)

Hello Andrew...

Which way is the jump... and then the recovery.
Look at the "jump" image that i posted. NGC 6366 to the left is East (According to my Astro Planner chart... see below. It looks to me as if the "jump" is to the west (meaning the targets moved to the west), and then the targets return to the east to the correct position. Notice the positions of the various objects of both pics. They line up.


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OzAndrewJ
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 11/30/10

Re: LX80 RA Tracking [Re: dmdouglass]
      #5362699 - 08/11/12 12:00 AM

Gday David

Quote:

Look at the "jump" image that i posted. NGC 6366 to the left is East (According to my Astro Planner chart... see below. It looks to me as if the "jump" is to the west (meaning the targets moved to the west)




OK, that indicates the drive sped up.
If it is a mechanical error on the worm to wormwheel transition,
( and that is purely hypothetical )
it certainly could be caused by the worm "entering" the wormwheel and "catching on something" before it engages properly.

Again, more data is required, but based on both you and Kevin seeing it, and both at the same timebase, its certainly looking mechanical at present.

Andrew


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