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Aligning with SCP without being able to see it?

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#1 graham.galea

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 08:55 PM

Hello,

 

I recently moved to Brisbane and in the new property I have a very narrow back yard. I have a Skywatcher ED100 on a EQ6 mount and usually I use the Polemaster to align with the SCP. However, from my backyard the house is in the way, so I am looking for a new way to align without seeing the SCP.

Details of my location are:

Latitude: -27Deg 14' 21"

Longitude: 153Deg 5'54"

Elevation: 16+/-3metres above see level.

One option is to use a stick in the backyard and align my telescope with its shadow at Solar noon. Pictures attached. Solar Noon is 11:43am on Saturday 14 September. Compass measure was ~180deg True North.

 

Is this a valid method? Any other ideas?

Attached File  IMG_1966.pdf   304.04KB   18 downloads

 

Kind Regards

 

Graham Galea.



#2 John Fitzgerald

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Posted 13 September 2019 - 08:59 PM

Align as best you can with the solar noon method, then do a drift alignment, and mark the position of the tripod legs with inserts in the ground, and set up the same way each time.


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#3 Bowlerhat

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 05:24 AM

I used this one: https://www.youtube....h?v=9SZ8Otnr3rs

 

He also narrated one from the Brisbane Astronomical Society: https://www.youtube....h?v=qkYxtYhKMj0



#4 graham.galea

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Posted 14 September 2019 - 06:08 AM

It went reasonably well tonight, drifting less than previous nights but still not perfect. I need to do a drift alignment but not quite sure how. I have an Orion guide scope with a ZWO ASI120 mono camera connected using PHD2, but PHD2 made it worse. The EQ6 has the GOTO handset and I also have the option of using an EQMOD cable instead of the handset and ASCOM drivers.

Any pointers in how to drift align either using the PHD2, EQ6 goto handset or EQMOD with ASCOM divers would be appreciated.



#5 graham.galea

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Posted 15 September 2019 - 04:00 PM

More luck tonight. Tried the stick at solar noon again and re-affirmed the setup of the mount and the direction of the telescope was nominal. Confirmed the elevation of the telescope was per the measured latitude. Remember, I live in a narrow backyard and cannot see the SCP, but I do have a reasonable vie East and West.I also re-aligned the guide scope, the finder scope and the primary scope during the day.

 

I decided to go with the PHD2, EQMOD combination and dropped the the GOTO handset after watching 3 good youtube videos from Vanarchy. Links below.

https://www.youtube....h?v=PRY2jN3xTBQ

https://www.youtube....h?v=--y1mk_ylSo

https://www.youtube....h?v=ArU5vC1o1Jk

 

Initially I slewed to the full moon to focus the guider scope and primary scope. Scope was slightly off, down and to the left. The moon was in the finder scope. Using the RA and the DEC on the mount, I was able to re-adjust until the moon was in the middle of the primary scope. I have a ZWO120MM-s on an Orion 600 guider scope. The view of the moon was too large and over saturated looking at it via PHD2. I think there is a Gain option on PHD2 Camera configuration which I will try and bring down next time I go out?

 

After focusing, I slewed to Altair. Very close to the centre and I used the bullseye in PHD2 to centre it. Mistake I made is I tried drift aligning on Altair with a low degree of success. I wasn't seeing much of a change on the purple circle, DEC and RA lines doing drift and adjust in PHD2.

 

After rewatching Vanarchy's youtube videos, I realised what I was meant to drift align after Altair by finding a star close to the Meridian and Celestial equator. Well, I need to try this next weekend.

 

Confident though that I am on the right track. Any additional pointers is always welcome.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Graham Galea. 




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