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Mega-mod thread for Zhumell dobs

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#1476 stevenrjanssens

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Posted 13 July 2020 - 07:30 PM

Ever since I got my Z10 I've been looking to replace the battery pack for the fan with a DC converter to save on batteries, at least while using the scope at home. It takes 12V DC (max) from a source with a 2.1mm tip. I had a 12V 2.5A converter lying around that now has a new home. I didn't see these specs searching through this thread, but I may have (understandably) missed it!

 

Specs here:

https://agenaastro.c...irror-cell.html


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#1477 Cames

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 02:10 AM

This level of detail they provide in describing their products is why I appreciate AgenaAstro's catalog descriptions so much.

 

It's as if the author has personally used the item being sold. Is it a way to avoid misunderstandings and rejections after someone purchases such a complex part and tries to put it into use?  Yes, of course.  But the the thoroughness goes far beyond what I've seen elsewhere. Might the details cost a sale from time-to time?  Maybe so.  But the level of honesty in dealing with customers has to be admired.

 

With such an extensive catalog of products as Agena supports, the task of maintaining and updating such a detailed resource requires a combination of acumen and dedication that I can't even imagine.  They have set the bar very high for competitors to match.  Much respect to AgenaAstro.

---------------

C


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#1478 Dave McCrary

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 10:57 AM

I use the Celestron 7 amp Power tank. Has worked well for me.

 

https://agenaastro.c...pply-18774.html

 

Dave



#1479 cuzimthedad

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 12:47 PM

People should always feel free to ask questions without fear of looking like an idiot, even when the info they are searching for may be imbedded within a thread. Not everyone has the time to read through a lengthy topic such as this and may need their answers sooner. And although this is not a technical support site, it is a modification thread with basis in other peoples upgrades and experience which may or may not be covered in tech support (which would most likely only apply to OEM and not upgrades). So people, keep asking on!


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#1480 halx

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 12:56 PM

My latest solution for the z12 (and general) power is the Nitecore 4x18650 LiPO 7 amp hour charger/powerbank

Wholesale-NITECORE-F4-Flex-Bank-2In1-Out

sitting in the 3D printed magnetic harness holding it and the iron counterweight on the side of the OTA. It powers the fan, dew heaters, QuInsight LED blinker SoC, and surely the smartphone with the starchart. Carrying a spare set of 4 charged cells, recharging them from solar daytime when in the field.

 

PowerWeight,medium.1594748970.jpg

(I will post its images and the build details on the scope soon, heading to the Sierra this coming New Moon weekend).

Be careful with the long moving cable, it's easy to trip over and damage your equipment (I have removed it from my field gear after tripping over it in the field, and short-circuiting my car frying the center console fuse). The AC/DC is also able to electrocute you in wet conditions if the adapter not grounded properly (5-12V is not a biggie, but not pleasant and may disable electronics, a heart pacer in particular).

EDIT: Oh! And I have the fan replaced with a silent 70mm 5V computer fan off eBay for $3.


Edited by halx, 14 July 2020 - 01:04 PM.

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#1481 cuzimthedad

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 01:15 PM

My latest solution for the z12 (and general) power is the Nitecore 4x18650 LiPO 7 amp hour charger/powerbank

Wholesale-NITECORE-F4-Flex-Bank-2In1-Out

sitting in the 3D printed magnetic harness holding it and the iron counterweight on the side of the OTA. It powers the fan, dew heaters, QuInsight LED blinker SoC, and surely the smartphone with the starchart. Carrying a spare set of 4 charged cells, recharging them from solar daytime when in the field.

 

PowerWeight,medium.1594748970.jpg

(I will post its images and the build details on the scope soon, heading to the Sierra this coming New Moon weekend).

Be careful with the long moving cable, it's easy to trip over and damage your equipment (I have removed it from my field gear after tripping over it in the field, and short-circuiting my car frying the center console fuse). The AC/DC is also able to electrocute you in wet conditions if the adapter not grounded properly (5-12V is not a biggie, but not pleasant and may disable electronics, a heart pacer in particular).

EDIT: Oh! And I have the fan replaced with a silent 70mm 5V computer fan off eBay for $3.

How long do you get during a session on one pack before having to change out?



#1482 halx

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 03:24 PM

People should always feel free to ask questions without fear of looking like an idiot, even when the info they are searching for may be imbedded within a thread. Not everyone has the time to read through a lengthy topic such as this and may need their answers sooner. And although this is not a technical support site, it is a modification thread with basis in other peoples upgrades and experience which may or may not be covered in tech support (which would most likely only apply to OEM and not upgrades). So people, keep asking on!

I feel that as a disrespect to all of us on the forum. We spent our precious time to implement a mod, share the experience with others (text and images), have it polished in the discussion (hours of our personal time) but someone can't simply click the search button (seconds of their busy time) or ask a direct practical question about an existing mod's they liked (after reading mere 60 pages "free magazine" on the subject readily available in front of them) suitability for their situation.


Edited by halx, 14 July 2020 - 03:25 PM.


#1483 halx

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 03:56 PM

How long do you get during a session on one pack before having to change out?

Hard to tell, the longest I had used that powerbank so far is 2 full nights: 2-3 hours with fan on, no heating, the dedicated smartphone can handle 3-4 days on its charge (network off) so I rarely need to power it at night and its' usually off day time, the QuInsight (Telrad before that) runs all night. After that, I saw 2-3 bars vanished on cel 1 and 2 (the bank drains only 2 at a time, then switching to the second pair inside automatically, saving the second pair for possible use with other camping gear outside of the bank, i.g. a flashlight). So, I would estimate all 4 would drain in 5-7 full nights of average use.


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#1484 sunrag

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Posted 14 July 2020 - 04:53 PM

This level of detail they provide in describing their products is why I appreciate AgenaAstro's catalog descriptions so much.

 

It's as if the author has personally used the item being sold. Is it a way to avoid misunderstandings and rejections after someone purchases such a complex part and tries to put it into use?  Yes, of course.  But the the thoroughness goes far beyond what I've seen elsewhere. Might the details cost a sale from time-to time?  Maybe so.  But the level of honesty in dealing with customers has to be admired.

 

With such an extensive catalog of products as Agena supports, the task of maintaining and updating such a detailed resource requires a combination of acumen and dedication that I can't even imagine.  They have set the bar very high for competitors to match.  Much respect to AgenaAstro.

---------------

C

I too was impressed by the amount of information on AgenaAstro when I was researching Crayford focusers. Quite a lot of thought and detail put into it, for example, they have a detailed table of focusers and compatibility with telescopes, and all important dimensions. Some of this information was gathered from feedback from customers and then meticulously assembled into a easily usable table.

 

Also, if you are missing a thumbscrew or a spider vane support screw, Agena has a lot of small parts like this available.


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#1485 raulert

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Posted 18 July 2020 - 06:20 PM

I use a Thousand Oaks dew heater, and have a 12v deep cycle battery for powering my goto scope. The dew heater has a 12v "passthru" socket on the end that isn't attenuated by the rheostats. I made up cable to go from the dew heater to the fan. I do continue to use battery pack and 8 rechargeable AA cells for convenience. But the deep cycle battery is usually nearby and would probably run the fan for about a week! Typically, I use the deep cycle to do the initial cool down, and then switch over to the AA battery pack while viewing. The AA battery pack has the benefit of no loose wires around the dob's base, and as the batteries run down the fan spins slower and vibrates less (in theory).



#1486 prototype3a

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Posted 20 July 2020 - 10:58 PM

I posted about this elsewhere but I suppose I'll write about it here as well...

 

The AA pack that came with my scope died and honestly, I can't be bothered to deal with alkalines or AA cells in quantities this high.  So I was trying to figure out another way to supply 12v in an easier to maintain manner.

 

Finally, I remembered that I had purchased this neat Milwaukee M12 widgit so I could charge my tools (slowly) with a phone charger when I go on travel.

 

https://www.homedepo...-1201/301956778

 

It has a 12v output for use with the M12 heated jackets and other winter gear.  It uses the same barrel plug as the telescope and both are center pin positive.  I just had to find an old wall wart with the right plug and hack the two wires together with some solder and heatshrink.

 

This is perfect for me as I have a dozen or so M12 battery packs and the 6ah ones should last for days running that silly little fan.  Also, the M12 packs should handle cold weather just fine.

 

There is also an M18 usb (phone charger) adapter that also has a 12v regulated output but I don't personally own that one.


Edited by prototype3a, 20 July 2020 - 11:01 PM.


#1487 halx

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Posted 21 July 2020 - 02:57 AM

M12? heart.png 

1024px-M12_Hubble.jpg


Edited by halx, 21 July 2020 - 02:58 AM.

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#1488 Pogo007

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Posted 22 July 2020 - 10:07 PM

Up until I recently gave up visual astronomy I used, with success, the Tracer 12V 12Ah LiFePO4.



#1489 Ohmless

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 09:52 PM

giving this classic thread a bump!


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#1490 OIC

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 08:59 AM

This thread was a great help to me. Thanks for the bump.


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#1491 Elroy

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Posted 01 October 2020 - 09:47 PM

This thread encouraged me to purchase my Z12 dob. waytogo.gif


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#1492 Gevin

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Posted 03 October 2020 - 10:34 PM

I'd like to start by saying this is the most awesome, insightful, helpful, and inspirational thread I've ever read! Secondly I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Gevin and I'm fairly new to amateur astronomy. I've always been fasinated by space and recently decided to take up the hobby. I started off a Celestron Starsense Explorer with an aperture of 114mm's. That turned out to just be a tease so I stumbled across a video of a gentleman that had an apertura ad12. The moment I laid eyes on it, I knew i absolutely had to have one of my own. So I sold the Celestron and began my research on Dobsonians. My final decision ended up being a Zhumell Z10 Deluxe. Which is in transit to me at this very moment and should be here between Oct.7- Oct.13. Can't wait for its arrival. With all the inspiration from this thread, I've started the mods before it's even gotten to me. Lol I have the bug. So i have a few mods i want to do but I will tell you what Ive already gotten for it, and the plans for future mods to come. So as I mentioned, it's a z10. I've already have a dew shield, about 10 eyepieces, colored and light pollution reduction filters. At this point my other half is ready to strangled me for what I have invested thus far. Lol. Now the future mods consist of dobsonian dream8 push to encoders, flocking, Bob's knobs for secondary, fan baffle, stronger collimation springs,GLP with bracket, duel finder scope dovetail mount so i can mount GLP and RACI on same mount to avoid any additional holes,and lastly a rebuilt stand. For now, lol. I've noticed from reading this entire thread over the past few days that everyone seems to be more partial to the Telrad and RACI combination. But I think with me being sorta new to this still that the GLP and RACI combo would suit me better as I still haven't learned the entire night sky yet. Thanks for all the inspiration and the wealth of knowledge on mods thats located within this thread. And also for letting me share would i have in my for my dob, as i plan on having this one for quite some time. I will update with pictures as soon as she arrives and i get her unboxed.
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#1493 OIC

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Posted 04 October 2020 - 10:16 AM

Welcome and congratulations. I love my Z8. You'll have a great time with your Z10.



#1494 cuzimthedad

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Posted 04 October 2020 - 12:40 PM

Congratulations on the new scope and welcome to CN Gevin!



#1495 Gevin

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 12:11 AM

Thanks and I plan on making many lasting memories with this scope. And hopefully if further questions arise in the future when it comes to mods I can turn to CN and get all the help I need

#1496 Elroy

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 04:49 PM

I'd like to start by saying this is the most awesome, insightful, helpful, and inspirational thread I've ever read! Secondly I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Gevin and I'm fairly new to amateur astronomy. I've always been fasinated by space and recently decided to take up the hobby. I started off a Celestron Starsense Explorer with an aperture of 114mm's. That turned out to just be a tease so I stumbled across a video of a gentleman that had an apertura ad12. The moment I laid eyes on it, I knew i absolutely had to have one of my own. So I sold the Celestron and began my research on Dobsonians. My final decision ended up being a Zhumell Z10 Deluxe. Which is in transit to me at this very moment and should be here between Oct.7- Oct.13. Can't wait for its arrival. With all the inspiration from this thread, I've started the mods before it's even gotten to me. Lol I have the bug. So i have a few mods i want to do but I will tell you what Ive already gotten for it, and the plans for future mods to come. So as I mentioned, it's a z10. I've already have a dew shield, about 10 eyepieces, colored and light pollution reduction filters. At this point my other half is ready to strangled me for what I have invested thus far. Lol. Now the future mods consist of dobsonian dream8 push to encoders, flocking, Bob's knobs for secondary, fan baffle, stronger collimation springs,GLP with bracket, duel finder scope dovetail mount so i can mount GLP and RACI on same mount to avoid any additional holes,and lastly a rebuilt stand. For now, lol. I've noticed from reading this entire thread over the past few days that everyone seems to be more partial to the Telrad and RACI combination. But I think with me being sorta new to this still that the GLP and RACI combo would suit me better as I still haven't learned the entire night sky yet. Thanks for all the inspiration and the wealth of knowledge on mods thats located within this thread. And also for letting me share would i have in my for my dob, as i plan on having this one for quite some time. I will update with pictures as soon as she arrives and i get her unboxed.

Mods are great and enjoyable but the best money I have spent has been for quality collimation tools. If you have yet to purchase any, Glatter and CatsEye are always the big favorites here on CN. Farpoint and AstroSystems should also be worth considering.

 

It's all good!waytogo.gif


Edited by Elroy, 05 October 2020 - 04:49 PM.

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#1497 Gevin

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 07:52 PM

The z10 I bought comes with a zhumell laser collimator. Ive heard alot of talk about how they arent very accurate and that they need collimating themselves. While im waiting for it to arrive on wednesday I figured i would take a little time today and knock out a few mods so they will be done and waiting on it to show up. I made my counterbalance weights, carrying straps for the OTA, and also made a jig for collimating the collimator..lol. I plan on getting a better one in the near future but just gonna make due with that one for now.thanks for pointing me in the right direction when it comes to what is quality and what isnt

Edited by Gevin, 05 October 2020 - 08:01 PM.


#1498 Gevin

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 07:57 PM

Oh and also have handle to mount on dust cap and another one that matches to use as a guide knob. Almost forgot about those.I also have a question if anyone can answer it. In your opinion does baffling both sides of the primary really make that much of a difference or is just baffling the outer part sufficient? Really dont want to tear into at this moment if I dont have to. Would rather get it set up as i am eager to see the views it gives me but if it makes it perform better then I guess I will go ahead and do it. Just asking some of yalls opinion on that matter

Edited by Gevin, 05 October 2020 - 08:07 PM.


#1499 sunrag

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 08:51 PM

Congratulations on the new scope!

My biggest mods were flocking the inside, adding a TERAD, and adding Romer Optics EZ Push To system. All these added tremendously to my enjoyment of my Apertura Dob.

Definitely spend sometime viewing with your telescope as received. Then in winter months you can take on the internal modifications.

My collimation improved a lot after adding stiffer springs for the Primary, and a metal washer between the secondary and the three tilt screws. That and a lot of help from members here.


Edited by sunrag, 06 October 2020 - 07:25 AM.

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#1500 Gevin

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Posted 05 October 2020 - 11:09 PM

Thanks that sounds like a great idea. Wait until its cold and then do it.yea i plan on doing those and last night I was looking at the easy push to kit and for $99 you cant beat it. Just not sure about the app it uses. I was thinking of going with dobson dream 8 as it uses sky safari but its double the price at $189.they also have dobson dream 4 and its $159. I mean if the app is decent or kind of like sky safari I may go with it


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