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8SE aligns ok but tells me Starpointer is off?

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#1 Chris Boar

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 12:26 PM

So I'm slowly getting used to aligning my 8SE. Got it leveled ok. And I use a green laser pointer as my 'finder scope'.

But every time I align I get the error message telling me my starpointer is off?

I used the auto 2 star alignment. Last night I used Vega and Arcturus. Centered the latter, then told the scope to slew over to Vega as the 2nd alignment star. It was way off, so I centered it. Alignment was fine but got the error message again?

Using GOTO was getting me close to objects, usually just outside the EP FOV.

What can I do to improve this? I don't understand how it knows the starpointer is off? If I'm centering the alignment stars in the EP before confirming alignment, then that's my final reference point isn't it?

Thanks for any help.

#2 Peter9

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 12:40 PM

Hi Cris, I'll leave your GoTo problems to those more able to help you but I just wondered if you were mistaking the error message for the one that reminds you to turn off your starpointer after a successful alignment.

Peter.

#3 Bob Griffiths

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 01:09 PM

So I'm slowly getting used to aligning my 8SE. Got it leveled ok. And I use a green laser pointer as my 'finder scope'.

But every time I align I get the error message telling me my starpointer is off?

I used the auto 2 star alignment. Last night I used Vega and Arcturus. Centered the latter, then told the scope to slew over to Vega as the 2nd alignment star. It was way off, so I centered it. Alignment was fine but got the error message again?

Using GOTO was getting me close to objects, usually just outside the EP FOV.

What can I do to improve this? I don't understand how it knows the starpointer is off? If I'm centering the alignment stars in the EP before confirming alignment, then that's my final reference point isn't it?

Thanks for any help.


Chris....

Welcome to the the LARGE number of us who also wre confused with the Starpointer off message when we first started using these scopes... LOL

So do not feel STUPID when you discover it is just a reminder to turn your red dot finder off to conserve the batteries...

I have a feeling there has to be 3 maybe 4 guys/gals who knew what that message actually meant the first time they saw it..The rest of us were just plain confused bewildered and frustrated...

ON the alignment... IF the scope was anywhere close to Vega your fine...until you have it aligned the scope is only GUESSING approximately where it should be ..and it usually guesses wrong... so just use the HC to center Vega and align on it...

Better GoTo's can be achieved by refining your centering technique ...I find it easy to center a star if I defocus it into a big donut that almost fills the FOV of a med to high powered eyepiece really easy to get it centered that way....Also depending on what you have your Goto approach set at you will find you get better Goto results if you only use the Right arrow button and the UP or Down button DEPENDED on how you have the scope set up... My approach is Positive and positive
and I only use the Right and Down buttons to center a Star ..if I go to far I start all over again...

Bob G

#4 TonyDralle

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 01:11 PM

Hi, Chris,
I suspect Peter is correct. Try replacing (in your mind) the terse message "Starpointer off" with the more helpful "Now that you've aligned successfully, turn the starpointer off so its batteries won't run down."

Do not feel bad about misinterpreting that statement. Several hundred others before you have done the same!

As for better alignments, have you been centering the alignment stars accurately, like by using a cross-hair eyepiece or by defocusing the star so it appears larger and is therefore easier to center? And have you been completing your alignment (i.e., the last two direction buttons pushed when centering the alignment stars) with the correct two buttons? For a start on this point, look at the "Alignment Tips" thread at the top of this forum. Or look back at earlier discussions on this forum.

Good luck, and happy viewing!
- Tony

#5 TonyDralle

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 01:13 PM

Chris,

Also, Bob G as usual has excellent advice. He was responding to you at the same time I was.

- Tony

#6 Chris Boar

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 02:12 PM

Thanks Guys!

Stupid beginners mistake #56!

#7 Peter9

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 03:25 PM

Thanks Guys!

Stupid beginners mistake #56!


Far from stupid Chris. I was one of the many Confused, Bewildered and frustrated that Bob spoke of.

Peter.

#8 Chris Boar

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 05:13 PM

What about leaving the cap on my EP and wondering why I can't see any stars! That one took me 20 minutes to figure out given I was out in the dark....opps.

#9 brianb11213

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 06:36 PM

What about leaving the cap on my EP and wondering why I can't see any stars!


:rofl2:

Not done that though I have sometimes been yunable to find the Sun with my solar rig until discovering that the objective cap is still on :foreheadslap:

#10 midnightblue

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Posted 22 May 2009 - 08:02 PM

two :funny: i did strip my 6se down thinking the secondary
mirror was cracked but all along it was the street light
shinning through a bush :bigshock: :foreheadslap: :lol:

#11 Tel

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 05:08 AM

Yep, Count me in too Chris !

I also had to ask but the classic for me was, on more than one occasion, putting in the date according to European format and wondering why Polaris lay on the Western horizon ! :idea:

Best regards,
Tel

#12 Tel

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Posted 23 May 2009 - 05:35 AM

Hi Chris,

Additional thoughts !

As a follow up to Bob's good advice, I suspect that if you go into your "Menu", then to "Scope Setup" and finally to "GoTo Approach", Azimuth is set to Positive and your Altitude to Negative. (the Azimuth GoTo Approach actually needs to be set to Positive for Northern Hemisphere users).

If this is the case, then when it comes to centralising your alignment stars in the EP, you need to bring them to centre using the upward and right HC direction buttons to get the best out of your observational session. If you overshoot centre, then just retrace your movement any which way so long as your final approach to centre is made by means of the up and right buttons.

If however for any reason you suspect, with all of your accessories, (finder 'scope, heavy diagonal / EP etc. etc.), on board that your OTA is backend heavy, I think your alignments will benefit from the Altitude GoTo Approach being reset to Positive. If you decide to try this, you will then need to centralise your alignment stars by moving them down rather than up but still to the right.

Hope this helps with your alignment accuracy a little more. Don't forget to use the big doughnut too !

Best regards,
Tel


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