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MG1962
sage


Reged: 08/13/11

Nexstar SE8 power connection question new
      #5608100 - 01/06/13 11:14 AM

I have a minor issue that my scope loses power during a session. I have identified the problem is (especially in cold weather) the connection between the lead from the power tank and mount is a tiny bit lose.

I have heard people talk of the need to 'spread' the pin. Now I am no handy man, so I really have no idea what this term means, or what tool should be used to accomplish the task.

So any explanation, or tips would be greatly appreciated.


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butsam
super member


Reged: 12/28/12

Loc: Ohio
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5608145 - 01/06/13 11:34 AM

I haven't noticed this yet, but I heard someone say it is because the connection that comes with the power tank is a way to *charge* the battery using a cigarette lighter output...the connection from the charger to the telescope is actually slightly different...a bit smaller. I don't remember the details, though, as far as what connector fits more snugly.

That said, a good solution I've heard others use that don't want to "spread the pin" is to put in 8 AA batteries AND use the power supply. That way, during those brief, fleeting moments where the connector is somewhat loose, you don't lose everything, since battery power is present as a backup. You definitely don't want to rely on the batteries only, but having them in for when the connection briefly comes loose can save headache.


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MG1962
sage


Reged: 08/13/11

Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: butsam]
      #5608160 - 01/06/13 11:43 AM

Thanks and I will definitely consider that if I am not comfortable performing the fix

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Peter9
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Reged: 10/30/08

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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5608214 - 01/06/13 12:08 PM

Hi MG1962,

Spreading the pin refers to the receiving pin where the jack plug end of the power lead fits into the mount. That pin is split down the middle and by using a thin blade or similar, you can spread the halves apart slightly thus make the jack plug a tighter fit.

Regards. Peter.


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Midnight Dan
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Reged: 01/23/08

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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5608225 - 01/06/13 12:14 PM

Hi MG1962:

If you look into the power socket on the base of your mount, you will see a small split-pin in the center of it. You can take a sharp knife, insert it into the spilt, and *gently* spread the pin for a better connection to the power plug.

However, usually this is an indication that the power plug is the wrong size. Note that there are different size specification for these plugs and some look nearly identical. The correct one for a Nexstar SE mount has a 2.1mm inside diameter, and a 5.5mm outside diameter.

Another common (although incorrect for this mount) size is 2.5mm inside and 5.5mm outside. This kind of plug can be used, and will work, but will not be reliable. Any slight pull to one side or the other will cause intermittent disconnection of the power.

Here is a power cord that meets the spec for the required connector size:
http://www.scopestuff.com/ss_cc14.htm

-Dan


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MG1962
sage


Reged: 08/13/11

Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5608277 - 01/06/13 12:43 PM

Thanks midnight - is it all possible Celestron supplied the wrong sized fitting with the power tank I purchased from them?

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Arthur Dent
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Reged: 10/23/08

Loc: South Yorkshire, UK
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5608529 - 01/06/13 02:29 PM

Unlikely - but possible.

This may help. Meade use the other (more common) type N 5.5mm DC plug!

Celestron use the type M plug.



Art


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MG1962
sage


Reged: 08/13/11

Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Arthur Dent]
      #5608536 - 01/06/13 02:34 PM

Cheers I might purchase that cable from scopes stuff and see if that makes the difference - At $16.00 at worst I have a back up if anything goes wrong. And I will do the other suggestion of stacking in some batteries

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Midnight Dan
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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5608665 - 01/06/13 03:43 PM

Quote:

Thanks midnight - is it all possible Celestron supplied the wrong sized fitting with the power tank I purchased from them?




Well, I'm not sure. If you read the manual that comes with the Celestron Power Tank, it DOES say that the supplied cord is for charging the Power Tank from your car's cigarette lighter outlet, not for supplying power to the scope. So the question is, did they use the same connector as is used on their scopes?

I'm not convinced they did. The Celestron branded unit is also sold by other companies with different trade dress. So it is probably supplied by some other manufacturer who made the decision on what size connector to use for their charging plug.

-Dan


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Skip
Starlifter Driver
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Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5610238 - 01/07/13 01:21 PM

Quote:

Well, I'm not sure. If you read the manual that comes with the Celestron Power Tank, it DOES say that the supplied cord is for charging the Power Tank from your car's cigarette lighter outlet, not for supplying power to the scope. So the question is, did they use the same connector as is used on their scopes?





Hi Dan,

Wow! That is interesting. I never realized that. But my PT came with both a "recharging" (Input) cord and an Output cord. The output cord has the cigarette lighter type plug on one end and the Scope input plug on the other - and it was the correct size. The receptacles on the PT are clearly labled "Output" for the cigarette-style receptacle and "Input" for the recharging receptacle. My PT is nearly 6 years old and things may have changed.


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Midnight Dan
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Reged: 01/23/08

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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Skip]
      #5610358 - 01/07/13 02:44 PM

Hi Skip:

Odd. I got mine about 4 years ago and it only came with one cord. Mine was the 7 amp-hour model.

-Dan


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barbarosa
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 04/11/10

Loc: "lamorinda", CA
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: MG1962]
      #5610501 - 01/07/13 04:11 PM

Although there are industry stnadards for this type of inexpensive DC power connector, there are so many suppliers and slight variants that any given "M" connector might be make poor contact at the center pin/inner barrel or the outer barel/ring connection.

Spreading the center pin does not always create a good fix.

A US maker of bicycle lights used these connectors for many years. To maintain a reliable connection on a road or mountain bike they used a rubber grommet to position and hold the plug. This did not always work and their field solution was to take a pair of long nose pliers and squeeze the plug barrel makeing s slight dent. Sometimes a second dent was required.

I've used this squeeze fix on an after market connector with my CPC and with a Celestron connector on my Nexstar mount, when spreading the center pin did not entirely solve the problem.


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butsam
super member


Reged: 12/28/12

Loc: Ohio
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5612482 - 01/08/13 06:38 PM

Quote:

Hi Skip:

Odd. I got mine about 4 years ago and it only came with one cord. Mine was the 7 amp-hour model.

-Dan




I just got mine right for Christmas, and I came really close to returning it because the documentation said there were 2 cords, but I only saw one...turns out the 2nd cord (with the cigarette lighter plug-in) was in the door on the back that had the warning label on it (the label didn't make mention that it was a door either)...the only way I found this out was by looking online. This was for the Celestron Power Tank.

Not saying yours was the same way, but I do want to include this in the forum in case someone gets the newer Celestron Power Tank and wonders where the 2nd cord is!


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Midnight Dan
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Reged: 01/23/08

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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: butsam]
      #5612881 - 01/08/13 11:03 PM

OK, now I'm confused.

Mine actually came with 2 cords, one with a power brick for charging from AC, and the other with the cigarette lighter plug for charging from a car. That second one was inside the back panel. I was leaving the AC charging cable out of my discussion because it clearly had nothing to do with the scope.

Skip: Are these the 2 cords you mentioned? I guess I was assuming you meant you received two cords with a cigarette lighter jack on one end and a scope-type connector on the other ... and that one was designated for the scope and the other was designated for charging.

-Dan


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Midnight Dan
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Reged: 01/23/08

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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5612895 - 01/08/13 11:08 PM

I just went and checked Celestron's website. They have the documentation linked from this page:
http://www.celestron.com/astronomy/celestron-powertank-12v-power-supply.html

Under the "DC Charging" section, it says "The DC recharging adapter is located in the compartment on the back side of the PowerTank."

This says to me that the cord is designed to fit the charging connection on the front of the Power Tank. It may or may not fit the scope too, but that doesn't appear to be its designed purpose.

-Dan


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Skip
Starlifter Driver
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Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5613837 - 01/09/13 02:36 PM

Quote:

Skip: Are these the 2 cords you mentioned? I guess I was assuming you meant you received two cords with a cigarette lighter jack on one end and a scope-type connector on the other ... and that one was designated for the scope and the other was designated for charging.




You know Dan, you could be absolutely correct. I seldom read manuals and it does get me in trouble sometimes. I did get two cords as you mention but I don't recall any designation on them (and I don't read manuals). But my reasoning comes from the label under the cigarette lighter receptacle. It says "Output". The one under the charging receptacle says "Input". So I assume (and you know what that does) that the input means power going into the unit and the output is for power going out of the unit, for example, to the scope. That seems logical to my militarily wired brain. But I could be all wet!!

So, that is the way I have been using the PT for 6 years and I've never had a problem with it. But what this does is confirm for me that I am right about reading manuals - I'm not gonna start doing it!


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Midnight Dan
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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Skip]
      #5613882 - 01/09/13 03:03 PM

Hi Skip:

OK, sorry if I'm being dense but I'm still not clear on your statement:

Quote:

I did get two cords as you mention ...




Since I mentioned a couple of different cable-set options, which one do you have:

A) one CL (cigarette Lighter) to scope-type, and one AC brick to scope-type

B) two CL to scope-type

C) two CL to scope-type and one AC brick to scope-type

-Dan


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butsam
super member


Reged: 12/28/12

Loc: Ohio
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5614064 - 01/09/13 04:46 PM

Skip,

I think the confusion is on where the 2nd cord goes. By the manual, the 2nd cord plugs in to your car's cigarette lighter, and the other end plugs into the power tank's input port. (In other words, it is to allow you to charge the power supply while driving -- presumably, to your dark viewing location. I do not recommend using it if the car is off unless you have another way to get home and a good set of jumper cables!)

The plug also works decently if you plug it into the cigarette lighter's output port and into your telescope, but that is not the stated purpose.

(At least for me, I haven't had issues yet, although others have reported intermittent connectivity when using the cord this way, and solutions are above. I have very little experience, being a newbie myself, so I'm not sure what the difference is, but a lot of the posts above have suggestions. If it makes a difference, I have a very new unit that came with the NexStar+ remote -- not sure if the fork arm mount changed at all also in the new manufacturing to accept a more standard plug, or if I have just been lucky.)


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Skip
Starlifter Driver
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Reged: 01/23/08

Loc: Fort Worth, Texas, USA
Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Midnight Dan]
      #5615424 - 01/10/13 12:23 PM

Quote:

Since I mentioned a couple of different cable-set options, which one do you have:

A) one CL (cigarette Lighter) to scope-type, and one AC brick to scope-type

B) two CL to scope-type

C) two CL to scope-type and one AC brick to scope-type




Howdy Dan,

Option A. But after reading what butsam wrote, I can now see how the cigarette style cord could be used to charge the PT. But I guess my thinking was, "How do I get power from the PT to the scope, except by putting the cig-stlye plug into the cig 'output' receptacle and the "M" style plug into the power receptacle in the scope."

Oh well, we've probably pummeled this necrotic equine sufficiently. So peace be unto ya my friend! Hope your weather clears and you get some viewing/imaging in.


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Midnight Dan
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Re: Nexstar SE8 power connection question new [Re: Skip]
      #5615633 - 01/10/13 02:22 PM

Thanks for the clarification, Skip! So it does indeed sound like we have the same thing.

Like butsam says, the cord is supplied for charging, not for powering the scope. However, if it is the correct connector, there certainly is no reason why it can't be used for the scope as well. I'm just not sure if it's the same connector.

As you say, and to paraphrase , we have sufficiently flogged this deceased equine. I'll go back to looking through my scope for a lovely, closeup view of the underside of the clouds.

-Dan


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