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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Send CGE to Celestron?
      #5985827 - 07/23/13 10:59 AM

Here at Camp Eberhart we have a C11 on a CGE mount but there are 2 problems with the mount. First as mentioned earlier this summer when going to the switch position it simply rotates endlessly in dec. There where some suggestions on howto fix it but they required some electronics experience that I don't have. Also the power plug in part of the mount seems to have a short and most of the time does not supply power at all. If sent back to Celestron would these issues be easily fixed for not so much $ in all likely hood? What might be the price range for such a fix? Time is really not an issue since this summer is almost over and it really only gets used by me in the summertime anyways and unfortunately for this scope it was a total loss. If it's not a big cost the camp might approve the fix if it's a lot then maybe not so much as this was a donated scope. Thanks.

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freestar8n
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 10/12/07

Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5985867 - 07/23/13 11:20 AM

The problems sound pretty minor and easily fixed by someone with a little experience. I would try to find someone in the area who would be willing and able to help. Even someone who didn't know the mount but knew some electronics might be able to fix the two issues.

If you don't get a response here then maybe on the cge yahoo group.

As part of the fix I would open both motor housings and reseat the connectors after cleaning them. You may also want to open up the electronic pier but that is harder and may not be needed - except to replace the real time clock battery. It may also let you adjust or replace the power connector if needed.

Frank


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jrcrillyAdministrator
Refractor wienie no more
*****

Reged: 04/30/03

Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: freestar8n]
      #5985903 - 07/23/13 11:42 AM

Yes. So long as the problem isn't the motor control board (possible but it would be unusual) it should be a pretty easy repair. If it's the board it will probably need to go back to Celestron as I don't think they sell that any more (used to be around $250). I'm 350 miles away so you should be able to find someone closer - but if worst comes to worst and you can't, I'd be glad to take a look at it. I'm familiar with the mount and spent 25 years as an electronics tech in a former life.

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mclewis1
Thread Killer
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: jrcrilly]
      #5986366 - 07/23/13 04:18 PM

Darren, For the type or adjustment/repairs you require I would suggest the following hierarchy ...

1) local expertise - someone who is experience with working on the switches as well as good mechanical/electrical skill sets (soldering, etc.).

2) repair/upgrade specialist - such as Ed Thomas at Deep Space Products
(http://www.deepspaceproducts.com/about-us.html)

3) Celestron - while certainly capable of the switch repair (but likely not the power connector ... there Celestron's response is likely to be "replace it") they are going to be the most expensive.


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: mclewis1]
      #5987615 - 07/24/13 10:14 AM

If there is anyone in this area that would like to help I am open for suggestions. Time is an issue to deal with it soon as I will be heading back to Chicagoland around 8/12 give or take. John thanks for your amazing offer to help. I would take you up for it if you are really interested. To anyone who does come to help you could see our amazing astro program here at camp. We have over 20 telescopes including what I bring and an amazing site. It's near Three Rivers, Mi. John send me a pm if you like. thanks... Here is one of several articles I wrote here on CN about camp
http://www.cloudynights.com/item.php?item_id=1926

Edited by Darren Drake (07/24/13 10:15 AM)


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rolo
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/14/07

Loc: GA, USA
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5988328 - 07/24/13 07:21 PM

Have you tried a new cable ? A run away declination motor is a common issue with these mounts. I have experienced the same issue with two CGE mounts and a new cable resolved the problem

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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: rolo]
      #5990025 - 07/25/13 06:02 PM

I have found that the power problem seems to be fixed by having the power cord rotated a certain way. So for now I'm just looking at the switch position problem. I should add that the dec motor never stops on it's own even if I accept that the switch position is accepted. So alignments don't happen....

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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5990329 - 07/25/13 09:32 PM

Hi,
On the power connector you can use a knife or a very small screwdriver and carefully spread apart the center post a little and it will fit tighter. This might or might not help.
I would try and replace the CAT5e cables for the spinning DEC problem. Make sure they are the shielded type. The connectors will have a metal case on it. Also try the "Reset" feature in the utility menu.
I would try these things before you send it in. If any of the circuit boards, switches, connectors or motors need replacing you can find them on the Celestron site under support, then spare parts, under narrow results click category and a list will drop down where you select CGE mount and it will show the parts and their high prices. Their expensive but at least they have them for sale new.
I bought my CAT5e shielded patch cables from "show me cables.com" These are very soft and flexible and bend easily so theirs no strain on the connectors. In different colors. I paid $12.63 for a pair 3 ft. long including shipping. I had CAT6 cables before but they were very stiff so I replaced them with these soft ones before I had problems.
Maybe some of this info might help.

neilson


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: neilson]
      #5991110 - 07/26/13 11:29 AM

Neilson. Being pretty unfamiliar with this mount how do I get to this "reset" feature? Thanks.

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mclewis1
Thread Killer
*****

Reged: 02/25/06

Loc: New Brunswick, Canada
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5991211 - 07/26/13 12:31 PM

Darren,

The "reset" is a hand control function called "Factory Settings".

The best user manual varies depending on which firmware level you have.

V4.xx up to 4.13 the best manual for HC functions is the Hand Control Version 4 User's Guide
v4.15/16 use the CGEM manual
V.19/21 use the CGEPro manual

The original CGE manual is always the best source for all the physical aspects of the mount but for specific functions of the hand controller the hand controller sections of the manuals for the other mounts mentioned are more appropriate.

The most popular source of simple replacement cables for the CGEs are the so called "Marty" cables from VPI. http://www.vpi.us/cable-sf-shld.html The use of replacement cables assumes that the sockets and connectors behind them are still intact (likely but not always true). Replacement cables with good electrically conductive shells and good quality wiring will certainly solve some or perhaps many of the connectivity problems. As you've also heard many times when simple replacement cables no longer solve connectivity problems the best solution is the complete replacement of the cable and sockets (the Gary Bennett modification kits).


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rolo
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/14/07

Loc: GA, USA
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5993380 - 07/27/13 05:59 PM Attachment (9 downloads)

Darren, the dec switch is pretty easy to get to. It could be adjusted to make proper contact and could also be replaced if need be. The two allen screws that hold it in place can be loosened so you can pivot the switch closer or further from the dec assy.
I had to adjust mine closer towards the dec assy because it wasn't close enough to be activated. When doing the alignment procedure the dec would just keep turning. Now it works correctly.
If replacing the switch, it easily unplugs for replacement.


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rolo
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 01/14/07

Loc: GA, USA
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: rolo]
      #5993515 - 07/27/13 07:43 PM

Here's a link to Celestron's switch...$15.00

http://www.celestron.com/astronomy/celestron-home-position-switch.html

Edited by rolo (07/27/13 07:44 PM)


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5993609 - 07/27/13 08:33 PM

Hi Darren it doesn't say Reset like I thought. You go to "utilities" then "Factory Settings" and It will tell you to press "zero" before it resets the mount to factory default settings. While doing this resets everything, the PEC and user defined objects remains saved. When I have problems I try this first before I tear apart my mount or buy parts. It just takes a couple minutes, its free and it won't hurt anything. The day I got my used mount the DEC was spinning and the factory settings reset feature fixed it. Two other times un plugging and plugging the cables back in fixed mine. The original owner had put CAT6 cables that were stiff. Replacing them with flexible shielded cables finally cured that. I would have checked the switches next.
Also try loosing the clutches and pointing the RA and DEC in their normal start position and tighten the clutches, then turn the mount on.

neilson

Edited by neilson (07/27/13 08:56 PM)


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DaveJ
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 01/07/05

Loc: NE Ohio
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: rolo]
      #5993793 - 07/27/13 10:38 PM

Quote:

Here's a link to Celestron's switch...$15.00

http://www.celestron.com/astronomy/celestron-home-position-switch.html




I purchased three of these from Radio Shack several years ago to replace all the switches in my CGE. Getting all three cost significantly less than one from Celestron.


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Darren Drake
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 10/09/02

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: DaveJ]
      #5996214 - 07/29/13 09:52 AM

Neilson,
Forgive me as I'm a dob guy. I've been pushing scopes to objects all my life without computer aid. How do I even get to these utilities and factory settings? I don't see those on the keypad. Thanks


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neilson
professor emeritus


Reged: 08/22/10

Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: Darren Drake]
      #5996405 - 07/29/13 11:46 AM

Hi,
You press key #3 it's the menu key. Then you use the #6 to scroll up and the #9 to scroll down. If you select something and want to go back you just press "undo."
First press #3 then use up or down to scroll until you get utility then press the "enter" key. Then scroll until you get to "factory settings," then press "enter." It will tell you to press #0 to reset everything. After that you press "undo" repeatedly until your back to "cge ready". I'm not sure if you need to restart the mount but I would. But first loosen the clutches and point the RA and DEC both forward in the start position and tighten the clutches. When you restart it will ask you to enter the time and location information again. Hope this helps.

neilson


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PhilCo126
Post Laureate


Reged: 01/14/05

Loc: coastline of Belgium
Re: Send CGE to Celestron? new [Re: neilson]
      #6008990 - 08/06/13 09:03 AM

Darren how are You doing... was the CGE reset ?

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