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Astro-Physics AP400 connector for power supply

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12 replies to this topic

#1 Tom Axelsen

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 06:29 AM

I have been given a used AP400 mount. The mount came with a homemade power supply for the main net. Using the main net and a 230VAC to 12VDC converter is nice if you have an observatory, but annoying if going mobile.

 
Because of this I have made a cable with a cigar lighter-plug and a cylindrical connector so it will be possible to supply the mount from a 12 V battery. But the  cylindrical connector, which is metric, is not a tight fit, causing the mount to lose power once in a while.

 

Can anybody tell me the dimension or type of the original AP cylindrical connector? I suppose it is some US-MIL specification??


Edited by Tom Axelsen, 20 February 2019 - 06:30 AM.


#2 OldManSky

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 10:00 AM

AP sells a power cable with a cigarette-lighter connector already pre-made:

 

http://www.astro-phy...s/400gto/400gto

 

(scroll down just a bit)



#3 Jeff B

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 10:56 AM

Nice mount.  I love mine.  I hope you get it sorted out.

 

Pictures?

 

Jeff


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#4 photoracer18

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 06:09 PM

AP currently only sells the cables for the mounts with the locking plug. Which happens to be every mount except the AP400. Somebody else had the same issue last year and found out they did not make that one anymore. So what's available now ? Mainly either Meade or Celestron power cables. Meade uses a 2.1mm center pin while Celestron uses a 2.0mm center pin. As a result the Meade power cable on a Celestron is loose and a Celestron won't fit over the center pin on a Meade socket. As you can see I have both an AP400 and an AP600. The AP600 uses the locking cable. My AP600 came with 2 locking cables so I cut the end off the one I did not want to use and I have started experimenting with cable ends trying to find one available commercially that fits well. Going thru all the ones I have in my collection first. If I find one that does the trick I will let people on here know. I can make cables if needed or I could fix whatever cable others have. Just have to find that particular one that works best. Just hoping that the reason AP is not making them is because they can't find the right part either. Another fix would be to replace the receptacle in the AP400 with the one from the newer scopes. If I can find one that is what I may do on mine so I can use the same cable. If I find a source who would be willing to send me their RA housing cover so I could replace the receptacle with the newer one then send it back for a small fee depending on the cost of the part?
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#5 OldManSky

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Posted 20 February 2019 - 06:52 PM

AP currently only sells the cables for the mounts with the locking plug. Which happens to be every mount except the AP400.

From the site I linked to above:

 

"If you have an early mount with a non-locking connector (including the first black 1200 mounts), please call us. We can provide these cables as well."

 

:)


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#6 Tom Axelsen

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 06:31 AM

Thanks for your answers smile.gif
 

AP currently only sells the cables for the mounts with the locking plug. Which happens to be every mount except the AP400. Somebody else had the same issue last year and found out they did not make that one anymore. So what's available now ? Mainly either Meade or Celestron power cables. Meade uses a 2.1mm center pin while Celestron uses a 2.0mm center pin. As a result the Meade power cable on a Celestron is loose and a Celestron won't fit over the center pin on a Meade socket. As you can see I have both an AP400 and an AP600. The AP600 uses the locking cable. My AP600 came with 2 locking cables so I cut the end off the one I did not want to use and I have started experimenting with cable ends trying to find one available commercially that fits well. Going thru all the ones I have in my collection first. If I find one that does the trick I will let people on here know. I can make cables if needed or I could fix whatever cable others have. Just have to find that particular one that works best. Just hoping that the reason AP is not making them is because they can't find the right part either. Another fix would be to replace the receptacle in the AP400 with the one from the newer scopes. If I can find one that is what I may do on mine so I can use the same cable. If I find a source who would be willing to send me their RA housing cover so I could replace the receptacle with the newer one then send it back for a small fee depending on the cost of the part?

The center pin of the cylindrical connector I am using now is 2.1mm which is loose, so a connector with a 2.0 mm center pin is probably the correct one smile.gif I will see if I can source it somewhere on the big web

 

From the site I linked to above:

 

"If you have an early mount with a non-locking connector (including the first black 1200 mounts), please call us. We can provide these cables as well."

 

smile.gif

 Yes, following your link from above I found this too. My AP400 is from 1994 or 1995 and it has a non-locking connector. If I am unsuccesfull in sourcing a new connector on the web I will contact AP.

Hmmm... just saw a vision of at huge pile of non-fitting connectors... lol.gif maybe I will contact them anyway smile.gif


Edited by Tom Axelsen, 21 February 2019 - 06:32 AM.


#7 Tom Axelsen

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 06:36 AM

Nice mount.  I love mine.  I hope you get it sorted out.

 

Pictures?

 

Jeff

I will sort it out smile.gif Yes it is a nice mount, but at the moment I don't have any pictures of it. I will post some when I get around to it :)



#8 gotak

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 06:53 AM

Here's an idea have you considered just getting someone to 3d print something out for you?

#9 MCinAZ

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 01:05 PM

The center pin of the cylindrical connector I am using now is 2.1mm which is loose, so a connector with a 2.0 mm center pin is probably the correct one smile.gif I will see if I can source it somewhere on the big web

  It's not entirely clear to me what power connector is on the mount, but it sounds as though it may be a 5.5 mm type. These typically have a center pin either 2.1 or 2.5 mm in diameter (other pin diameters are produced, but 2.1 and 2.5 mm are by far the most common). If your power cable has a 5.5 x 2.5 mm plug and the mount has a 5.5 x 2.1 mm receptacle, you are likely to experience intermittent contact. Since the plug will fit into the receptacle securely, thanks to the outer contact, the mismatch at the center terminal is not obvious. Of course, it may also be that the center pin is a less commonly used diameter, e.g. 2.0 or 2.03 mm. Or it could be that your power cable has the correct connector but the internal contact has become intermittent through repeated use.

 

  As suggested above, A-P will know what mating connector fits the mount. Since you're in Europe, they may provide the information or a part number for the connector so that you can procure the part locally if you're able to install it on your existing power cable.



#10 photoracer18

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 04:17 PM

Thanks for your answers smile.gif
 
The center pin of the cylindrical connector I am using now is 2.1mm which is loose, so a connector with a 2.0 mm center pin is probably the correct one smile.gif I will see if I can source it somewhere on the big web
 
 Yes, following your link from above I found this too. My AP400 is from 1994 or 1995 and it has a non-locking connector. If I am unsuccesfull in sourcing a new connector on the web I will contact AP.
Hmmm... just saw a vision of at huge pile of non-fitting connectors... lol.gif maybe I will contact them anyway smile.gif


Someone called them recently and when they sent a cable it was for the locking one and when they called back they said they checked and no longer have the older cables.

#11 Phil Sherman

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Posted 22 February 2019 - 01:26 AM

You could always adopt my solution to this problem. I cut off the cable around 50cm from the power supply end and install connectors, either PowerPole or XT60 on the cut ends. My DC cable attaches to the battery and has a matching connector to connect to the piece that plugs into the mount.


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#12 photoracer18

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Posted 04 March 2019 - 07:31 PM

My solution would be to get AP to send me a couple of the power supply socket from the mount. That would make my AP400 need the same cable as my AP600 once I replaced the socket on the 400.


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#13 WadeH237

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Posted 05 March 2019 - 09:13 AM

Just call George at Astro-Physics.  He should be able to tell you the exact specs of the connector (and whether they can send one or not).




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