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Equipment Discussions >> Mounts

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njensen593
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Reged: 01/14/10

Loc: LAfayette, LA
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: dawziecat]
      #6308283 - 01/12/14 02:29 PM

Heck Terry, my eyelids would have froze to my eyeballs at that temperature!
These Southern boys can't take cold like that!!!!
Niel


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njensen593
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Reged: 01/14/10

Loc: LAfayette, LA
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: dawziecat]
      #6308294 - 01/12/14 02:35 PM

Terry,
One other thing, Can you tell me what version HC & MB firmware you are using?
Thanks
Niel


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dawziecat
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: Rural Nova Scotia
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: njensen593]
      #6308416 - 01/12/14 03:30 PM

Quote:

Terry,
One other thing, Can you tell me what version HC & MB firmware you are using?
Thanks
Niel




Sorry Neil but my experience with G2 is in the past. Thought I was clear about that in my first post to this thread. I sold mine to move up to an AP mount. Sold it in February last year. Just received a new AP mount last month.

So now, the inevitable.
"Why did you sell it?"

Because I have fallen off the deep end and wanted bigger and better than the G-11 could go. I don't want to start an A-P vs Losmandy "incident." I am very happy with my new AP mount. But, the software lacks the sophistication of Gemini 2. It seems "dated," but, yes it works very well. Last time I updated my Gemini 2 controller was in the fall of 2012.

Every time I shift away from my target to a bright star to check focus, I miss the "Bookmark" function in Gemini 2.

I miss the Sharpless catalog too. A-P does not have it.

People really should not be trashing Gemini 2. It is great software!


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nemo129
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Reged: 01/03/10

Loc: WMass
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: njensen593]
      #6308423 - 01/12/14 03:37 PM

Niel,
I am using:
Main Unit: 3-Oct 2013
HC : 20-Sep 2013

I have not had any issues with those levels.

Like Terry, in order to go bigger, I purchased an AP1100 which is a wonderful mount, but I also miss the more advanced features of the Gemini 2. The ability to connect via Ethernet, USB, or serial port and the way you can add additional catalogs...and of course the bookmark feature.


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Raginar
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Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: nemo129]
      #6308433 - 01/12/14 03:45 PM

I'm running 30 Sep and 3 Oct firmware. I love my G2 with my Mi-250; like the said, all those advanced features are what makes me really appreciate it. I wish it had something as reliable as ASPA for alignments but PAC is pretty close.

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dawziecat
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Reged: 10/20/10

Loc: Rural Nova Scotia
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: Raginar]
      #6308454 - 01/12/14 03:55 PM

Well, I can't resist this. If I had the option of running Gemini 2 with my AP1600, I'd do it in a heartbeat!
Hey! I've used both . . . I got the "right" . . .

Edited by dawziecat (01/12/14 03:56 PM)


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Hilmi
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Reged: 03/07/10

Loc: Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: dawziecat]
      #6308521 - 01/12/14 04:22 PM

Theoretically, there is nothing stopping you from doing that. After all the Gemini II was designed to be a generic system that can be hooked up to any mount.

I would also like to make it clear that I do not intend to go around bashing the Gemini II, I am still having issues with it and so as to be clear here are the issues I am still facing specific to the Gemini II:

1) PEC doesnt work because the circuit board on the main Gemini II unit causes the motors to jump on power up, this makes the encoders loose their position making PEC useless. The fix involves a soldering iron or shipping the unit back to the US
2) Modeling asitant doesnt work
3) They removed the mobile hand controller (the one specifically designed to work with mobile phone screens) because the guy who wrote it is no longer developing it.
4) I have had several instances of the model getting corrupt for no apparent reason. Only solution is full power down, cold start and rebuild model, very annoying when you are trying to set up an automated image run
5) The screen to adjust the sensitivity of the heavy duty TR error trigger doesnt work, my mount keeps on constantly throwing this error at the slightest shift in balance outside perfect balance. how can you maintain perfect balance and still refocus when your imaging train weighs close to 3 Kg?
6) I still occasionally, if rarely get runaway DEC guiding

The Gemini II will one day become a great system, but for now, it has still not reached maturity. I am merely stating my opinion based on my personal experiences and I feel people should not assume that every negative comment is vendor bashing.

And one last thing. I consider the fact that several people, including myself have had issues with the hand controller due to the foam seal pressing down too hard and thus confusing the touch screen just pure shoddy workmanship. Again, that is a matter of opinion, others might be willing to live with such a minor glitch while those who never faced the problem might have no idea how annoying it is

Not all errors above will be apparent to all users because some of them are dependent on the motor firmware version. I have the latest version, the upgrade process was very difficult because the connectors you are supposed to use were missing from my main Gemini II circuit board so I had to improvise to get it installed.

Combine the above with the mechanical issues I faced and I think that it is no surprise if I sound bitter. And as good as Scott's customer service is, shipping back the entire mount to trouble shoot the mechanical issues and to implement the "fix" that makes PEC work all the way from the middle east to the USA is just too expensive. But to give the guy credit, he does provide excellent customer service

I would like to add that in certain occasions I have recommended Losmandy mounts to people where I felt it was appropriate for their needs and the issues would not interfere with the way they use it. A person who blindly bashes a product would not do that

Edited by Hilmi (01/12/14 04:46 PM)


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Raginar
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Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: Hilmi]
      #6308817 - 01/12/14 06:19 PM

Terry, I agree. I think I have the best of both worlds with my G2 Mi-250 . My Mi-250 is some where around 3" PE with close to 65# of gear on her. She works really well with the fancy new motors and the G2.

Hilmi,
That's weird, I've never noticed that my mount moves when I power it on. What if you've got an observatory? You could just leave it powered on .
2.) I've never had any issues using the modeling assistant. What's broken?
3.) There is still a JAVA page that works great on an iPhone.
4.) Me too. I started saving my models on the SD card and I just reload it when that happens.
5.) Never needed perfect balance... could be the Mi-250 though.
6.) Haven't had that happen since the late August firmware. Guiding works really good now for pulse guiding. I never had any issues using ST-4.

Yea, the foam thing is a bummer. I guess I'd call Scott and see what he can do for you in that regards. It seems like he backs up his gear pretty good. I know it sucks being overseas though. Shipping is pretty darn expensive.

How do you upgrade the motor firmware?

You're fair on the mount Hilmi. You definitely ended up with one of those poor 2012 editions that just didn't measure up. It was painful to read yours (and others) stories about how to get it fixed. Especially when you think about the nights lost. There is an Mi-250 on AM right now


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Hilmi
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Reged: 03/07/10

Loc: Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: Raginar]
      #6309373 - 01/12/14 11:41 PM

No need to call Scott about the hand controller. He had that replaced a while back. As I said his customer service is excellent. But just to give you an idea how much it would cost to get the mount sent for repair my camera cost ke $250 to send back to SBIG. Now imagine a mount in a hard case.

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Hilmi
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Reged: 03/07/10

Loc: Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: Raginar]
      #6309659 - 01/13/14 07:39 AM

Quote:

Terry, I agree. I think I have the best of both worlds with my G2 Mi-250 . My Mi-250 is some where around 3" PE with close to 65# of gear on her. She works really well with the fancy new motors and the G2.

Hilmi,
That's weird, I've never noticed that my mount moves when I power it on. What if you've got an observatory? You could just leave it powered on .
2.) I've never had any issues using the modeling assistant. What's broken?
3.) There is still a JAVA page that works great on an iPhone.
4.) Me too. I started saving my models on the SD card and I just reload it when that happens.
5.) Never needed perfect balance... could be the Mi-250 though.
6.) Haven't had that happen since the late August firmware. Guiding works really good now for pulse guiding. I never had any issues using ST-4.

Yea, the foam thing is a bummer. I guess I'd call Scott and see what he can do for you in that regards. It seems like he backs up his gear pretty good. I know it sucks being overseas though. Shipping is pretty darn expensive.

How do you upgrade the motor firmware?

You're fair on the mount Hilmi. You definitely ended up with one of those poor 2012 editions that just didn't measure up. It was painful to read yours (and others) stories about how to get it fixed. Especially when you think about the nights lost. There is an Mi-250 on AM right now




In response to your questions:
1) That was the original question in this post. You would got to the modelling assistant and tell it for example that you want a star in the east. It will suggest a star, you press goto it goes to that star. You center the star and press the bottom right button (can't recall what is written on it). Instead of going back to the modelling assistant, many times it just drops you back to the goto menu. The started after a recent firmware update.
2) The mobile hand controller allowed me to use the GPS on the phone to set location when I am out in the field. The standard web page lacks that feature. It was also a life saver when I had to send my hand controller back for repair (by the way, the repair was due to the foam sticking to the screen but refusing to come apart when separated).
3) we both agree on this one that models do get corrupt.
4) Issue is not really balance. The issue is that the Heavy Duty TR message comes when the motor draws too much current. But what is actually considered too much current is configured at too tight a margin and the web page that allows you to change it doesnt work. If you don't see heavy duty tr error messages maybe you have the old motor firmware.
5)I now use ST4 guiding since guiding via ASCOM still misbehaves. Sometimes it is too slow to respond or in other instances will just flat out fail to respond.

As for upgrading the firmware you need to buy one of these widgets. Then you need to make a custom cable harness and then install the firmware. For me the connector on the Gemini II motherboard was missing. So I had to improvise and trust me it was a messy experience.


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Raginar
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Reged: 10/19/10

Loc: Rapid CIty, SD
Re: Gemini II HC & System Issues new [Re: Hilmi]
      #6309801 - 01/13/14 09:12 AM

Thanks for the info on the upgrade. I think I have one that is updated and one that isn't currently. Sounds painful . Does it work ok?

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