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GPS one hour ahead, scope not remembering alignments and more...

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#1 fxmodels

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 01:30 PM

[NOTE: I wrote this once already and it didnt show up so if its  duplicate to an existing post please understand that this was the reason... ]

 

I have an LX200 GPS and its permanently mounted in an outreach observatory. Firmware is 4.2G on the autostarII controller and the GPS rollover bug has been corrected using StarPatch.

 

I have 3 problems that have surfaced in short order just last night after two years of working fine...

 

1) After retrieving the GPS fix, the Time is one hour AHEAD of my local time. I have done this several times and it is now one hour ahead every time.

 

2) When I shut dpwn for the night and park the telescope, I would normally unpark on the next clear night and go and everything is still remembered and alignment is still just fine. NOW however when I unpark it doesnt remember the alignment but doesnt say I need to realign either. It just goes on as if nothing happened. I have to realign or sync now every time. Not good for a remote observatory.

 

3) When I start up it would normally say welcome to autostar and then "Initializing Smart Drive"  comes up on the controller. Now it just gets the GPS fix which is wrong as above, and doesnt ever do the smart drive initialization any longer.

I have RA PEC ON and Dec PEC ON. Confirmed. It only does the Dec initialization. I have no idea why this is doing this now.

 

4) When I take pictures for 20 seconds I get the result now as shown below in the attachment. This has NEVER happened. I have no idea why I am getting two separate and distinct images. The error is in RA. I have routinely taken images for 30 seconds with NO error. Now I get this double set of images with as little as 15 seconds... Scope has NO extra weight on it. NO need to counterbalance anything. Cords and cables are hanging as they always have with NO hangups or wrapped cords anywhere..

 

If anyone has any ideas about any of these issues let me know.

Attached Thumbnails

  • DumbellDoubleError.jpg

Edited by fxmodels, 09 July 2019 - 01:32 PM.


#2 fullotto

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 01:46 PM

do you daylight saving time selected?



#3 Ettu

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 01:47 PM

Your hour ahead problem I don't have a clue beyond what you already know.

But my only thought that might be something to check,...

Has the tracking rate changed to the Lunar or solar rates?



#4 fxmodels

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 02:04 PM

do you daylight saving time selected?

Yes... In the previous post that was lost I mentioned that DST was indeed also selected ... Now if it wasnt selected I would have been two hours ahead on the telescope... :) sorry.. forgot about that point.



#5 fxmodels

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 02:06 PM

Your hour ahead problem I don't have a clue beyond what you already know.

But my only thought that might be something to check,...

Has the tracking rate changed to the Lunar or solar rates?

Yep sorry.. In the more complete post that was lost, I did note that tracking rate was Sidereal. sigh.... This gives me a deep foreboding...



#6 sg6

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 02:18 PM

Sounds like reload the firmware or go visit the Meade site itself and see if they have a suitable GPS fix version.

 

Is DST applicable? GPS should take care of that. Trouble is we have options to set that and not really sure we should have. It is something that maybe should not be offered with GPS available.

 

Where is the remote obs, and where are you.

 

However reads that the problems appeared with new firmware.

 

Does Starpatch cover all aspects, seem to recall reading the site and not everything was available, at least for the free version. Hence the idea of check the Meade support.



#7 Jim Davis

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 02:53 PM

Sounds like reload the firmware or go visit the Meade site itself and see if they have a suitable GPS fix version.

 

Meade now provides 4.2k which fixes the GPS issue.



#8 Eye stein

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 03:13 PM

I had the same problem when I noticed the big dipper asterism looked slightly different  in the sky then what my planeterium ( CDC) program showed.

I checked all settings in that program and somehow it had my location in Alabama ,not South Florida  where I live.

Alabama is at least 1 time zone west of me.

 I had set it up correctly many months previously and I don't know how it changed but it did.!

I fixed that problem and it is now working like it should.( that could also explain your star trails.)

It's worth checking ! 

good luck and clear skies!

Joe 



#9 fxmodels

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 10:07 PM

I had the same problem when I noticed the big dipper asterism looked slightly different  in the sky then what my planeterium ( CDC) program showed.

I checked all settings in that program and somehow it had my location in Alabama ,not South Florida  where I live.

Alabama is at least 1 time zone west of me.

 I had set it up correctly many months previously and I don't know how it changed but it did.!

I fixed that problem and it is now working like it should.( that could also explain your star trails.)

It's worth checking ! 

good luck and clear skies!

Joe 

I will check to see but my site as defined in Autostar II is still defaulted to my location in text only so far. I have to go see the lat and long data there... just to make sure... The star trails are not just rails... They are dots, a little blur, then a dot.. As if the tracking shut down momentarily then restarted... It is always in RA ... I have to determine direction of the shutdown as in to the west or to the east to determine the nature of the movement...



#10 fxmodels

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 11:03 PM

I checked the location. It was fine. I checked the tracking rates... Sidereal as I thought... I used StarPatch to correct for the GPS rollover issue. China/Russian satellite hacking of our GPS birds? There has been intel that this is on the horizon... See how desperate I am to find an answer?

 

I parked the scope and shut down and turned it on again... Upon unparking it didnt have the site stored AFTER getting the GPS location. I had to manually tell it where I was even though it reported no error in finding the site.

 

I am telling you, there is hacking going on with our birds.



#11 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 09 July 2019 - 11:50 PM

Gday fxmodels

 

Does Starpatch cover all aspects, seem to recall reading the site and not everything was available, at least for the free version.

Just for info, StarPatch is merely the loader app and in its freeware version is fully functional

you just cant use some of its advanced features.

That said,the GPS patch we just put out has nothing to do with tracking or anything else.

( There is an experimental section where i attempted to fix PEC and tracking but that is not selected to be loaded )

Just for info, when you checked your sites data, did you check the time zone as well.

The time zone must be the raw/native time zone, and should not include any DST

You toggle DST on/off using the menu option only.

 

I have RA PEC ON and Dec PEC ON. Confirmed. It only does the Dec initialization.

IIRC it will no longer detect the RA PEC sensor on booting if you unpark

If you have PEC ON and are just booting, vs unparking, it should do the detection.

ie if RA PEC is ON and it doesnt detect during booting ( or declare an error ), something else is going on.

You download my PEC editor from

http://members.optus...om.au/johansea/

As you have patched firmware it can read out a lot of data and that might highlight something.

Just by connecting my app, you can read out al the current settings for sites, PEC drive train/time etc

so that may provide a clue

 

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia


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#12 fxmodels

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Posted 10 July 2019 - 11:31 PM

Gday fxmodels

Just for info, StarPatch is merely the loader app and in its freeware version is fully functional

you just cant use some of its advanced features.

That said,the GPS patch we just put out has nothing to do with tracking or anything else.

( There is an experimental section where i attempted to fix PEC and tracking but that is not selected to be loaded )

Just for info, when you checked your sites data, did you check the time zone as well.

The time zone must be the raw/native time zone, and should not include any DST

You toggle DST on/off using the menu option only.

IIRC it will no longer detect the RA PEC sensor on booting if you unpark

If you have PEC ON and are just booting, vs unparking, it should do the detection.

ie if RA PEC is ON and it doesnt detect during booting ( or declare an error ), something else is going on.

You download my PEC editor from

http://members.optus...om.au/johansea/

As you have patched firmware it can read out a lot of data and that might highlight something.

Just by connecting my app, you can read out al the current settings for sites, PEC drive train/time etc

so that may provide a clue

 

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia

My scope is NOT doing the smart drive initialization any more. This is with both the  RA PEC and Dec PEC on after restarting from park. I turn the scope OFF after parking  and when I turn it on it does NOT  initialize the RA smart drive. It used to. The Dec PEC is on and it initialized but never DID before. Talk about confusion. I can assume it was off before. 

 

Further when I restart from having parked it, the alignment is completely lost. I have no idea why. It was finding everything once aligned. Even tonight when I started up I had to align it to find anything. I did a one star alignment and Polaris was already in the middle when it went to find it. Easy as ever. It slewed to arcturus and I centered and hit enter and we were off and everything worked.

 

Then I park it and shut it down. Restart it and the previous alignment is GONE. No smart drive initialization occurs, scope acquires GPS, still an hour off. The only way I could make it work was to turn OFF DST which is NOT TRUE. It should be on. Turning it off for my correct time zone and lat and long brings the time to what it should be. ****!!!

 

But this could be related to bad GPS data. As I mentioned, the scope is always an hour off in its time now and this is while confirming that I have DST on, and the correct lat long.

 

It also loses its parked position I explicitly set. Is there no END to this????

 

Is there supposed to  be a battery for this system??? I had 8 C cells in the base of the forks which I recall putting in there many years ago. Since taking them out along with the GPS rollover issue it seems all the trouble started..



#13 OzAndrewJ

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 12:21 AM

Gday fxmodels

As i mentioned earlier, if you unpark with PEC ON, the mount does not need to find the sensor

so shouldnt do the spin.

 

Further when I restart from having parked it, the alignment is completely lost.

This has me confused, as does the one hour error

Can you use my app to connect to your mount after aligning.

Convert and save the log

Now park the mount and unpark

Connect my app and convert and save the log

ie i want a snapshot of its settings when aligned

then a second one of how it has restored after unparking.

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia

( zip and send it to johansea at optusnet dot com dot au )

 

 

 

 

 

Then park and unconvert the log and send it to me

so i can see if there is anything odd



#14 fxmodels

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 08:45 AM

Gday fxmodels

As i mentioned earlier, if you unpark with PEC ON, the mount does not need to find the sensor

so shouldnt do the spin.

This has me confused, as does the one hour error

Can you use my app to connect to your mount after aligning.

Convert and save the log

Now park the mount and unpark

Connect my app and convert and save the log

ie i want a snapshot of its settings when aligned

then a second one of how it has restored after unparking.

Andrew Johansen Melbourne Australia

( zip and send it to johansea at optusnet dot com dot au )

 

 

 

 

 

Then park and unconvert the log and send it to me

so i can see if there is anything odd

Ok I will do this tonight if clear... I HAVE to get to the bottom of this and really appreciate your input... I will be moving the observatory about 2000 miles away in a few months to a remote location and need to have all the bugs worked out.



#15 Spectral Joe

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Posted 11 July 2019 - 08:58 AM

Not exactly on topic, but may be related, GPS is occasionally intentionally interfered with. These links may be of interest:

 

https://www.aopa.org...ercises-planned

 

https://pilotweb.nas...atType=DOMESTIC

 

When reading the NOTAMS the end of the last line gives the time period, in YYMMDDHHMM, in utc

 

I've seen GPS based timing equipment shifted by a minute or more during such activities.


Edited by Spectral Joe, 11 July 2019 - 09:06 AM.


#16 D_talley

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Posted 14 July 2019 - 09:17 AM

Check your offset from UTC. I had the same hour off problem and it turned out to be an incorrect setting in the offset from UTC. 




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