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Pegasus Astro - Falcon Rotator NOW AVAILABLE

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#1 evansg

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Posted 03 July 2020 - 06:08 AM

Pegasus Astro is pleased to announce the availability of the Falcon Rotator

 

Pegasus Astro – Falcon Rotator is a light-weighted, low profile camera field rotator. Do not be fooled by its thin size! It can lift and handle heavy image trains – dead accurate! Very easy to operate via ASCOM drivers or standalone software will make your life easier to automatically adjust with precision your camera field. Falcon Rotator has been tested at 6Kg / 13.2lbs of imaging setup. 

 

Back Focus 18mm / 0.7”

Rotator Weight 0.7Kg / 1.54 lbs)

Price: $626 (USD)

fr1.png

For more information: https://pegasusastro...falcon-rotator/

https://youtu.be/HySAb4uP58o

 


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#2 Dcox17

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Posted 07 July 2020 - 07:35 AM

Any chance we can get some actual photos? I’d like to see the interfaces

#3 nightfly85

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Posted 19 July 2020 - 03:48 AM

Didn't work with SGP. Worked fine with NINA on the same target M15.

 

The rotater would respond to commands but in the 2nd or third rotate command in the centering action would just "hang" SGP. In the log SGP has entries stating "timed out waiting for rotater move". I will supply more details tomorrow as I been up late testing.

 

Overall these are the things one has to do and the issues I had with the rotater:

 

- couldn't center on target with SGP - SGP would wait indefinitely for the rotater to make a requested move(s) and either it was there already or wouldn't respond the SGP request. I tried multiple times restarting SGP once even in-between.

- worked fine with NINA as far as I could tell.

- initially had issues with PHD2 guiding until I figured out I had to enable it's one and only rotater option "reverse sign for corrections" or something, Sorry don't quite remember the exact wording. But it's the only option on the tab "other devices" that shows up after enabling the rotater in the equipment list.

- don't forget to recal PHD2 with the rotater connected.

 

- two odd issues appeared - and I don't know if they are roater related or not as yet. They both appear in PHD's video frame nearest to the point of rotation in the frames. I use a ASI174 as the guide cam.

    - a circular reflection appears to be coming from the rotater, perhaps off one of the shiny bearings.

          -moving the telescope the reflection stayed mostly consistent (with small moves)

          - rotating the rotater would eventually make the reflection disappear.

         - it wasn't always visible, but did appear numerous times at several angles and positions in the sky.

   - my stars in the PHD video window nearest the point of rotation are always distorted in a elongated pattern.
         - persistent.

 

- you have to have the stand-alone utility running before any ASCOM based connection to the rotater will work. I wish the ASCOM side would auto - launch the standalone utility if not running.

- lastly, the backfocus is actually 19mm without adapters. The camera side threaded attachment piece sticks out 1 mm from the blue body case. I use a 53mm male to 48mm female adapter on the scope side so for me my total backfocus taken up with the rotater is 23mm (19mm+2mm +2mm).

 

More testing and details to follow.

 

I used my own DIY rotater for a few years, but got tired of the slight tilt I could never get rid of - so I am giving the Falcon a try. Its a well built piece of kit and smaller than the pictures make out. It works very quietly and accurately in my minimal testing so far with no slack, slop, or play in the attachment points that I could detect as yet. Much more testing to perform.


Edited by nightfly85, 19 July 2020 - 04:04 AM.

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#4 nightfly85

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Posted 19 July 2020 - 12:53 PM

SGP log file attached.

 

Contains various entries similar to:

 

07/18/20 22:29:08.359][DEBUG][Telescope Thread][CE;] ASCOM Rotator: MoveAbsSync Timeout!  GetPosition reports 342.03, trying to move to 342.00...
[07/18/20 22:29:08.359][DEBUG][Telescope Thread][CE;] Rotate failed...
[07/18/20 22:29:08.360][DEBUG][Telescope Thread][CE;] Auto center failed! Camera rotate failed.

 

or later:

 

07/18/20 22:40:27.410][DEBUG][Telescope Thread][CE;] ASCOM Rotator: MoveAbsSync Timeout!  GetPosition reports 341.87, trying to move to 342.00...
[07/18/20 22:40:27.410][DEBUG][Telescope Thread][CE;] Rotate failed...

 

An image showing the reflection I referred to and the star distortions that are new with the falcon installed - though I am not certain they are falcon related (not present the night before).

 

Cropped Rotater Reflection PHD2

 

Attached Files



#5 evansg

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Posted 21 July 2020 - 01:09 PM

A couple of comments here:

 

  • I do not think that the reflection comes from the bearing.
    This circular reflection probably comes from the OAG which was close to a bright star. I had seen the same reflection pattern in my setup multiple times (without the rotator).
  • Seems there is a minor bug in SGP which is going to be fixed in the upcoming SGP release. NINA and other software that handle the rotator do not have this behaviour.
  • About the elongated stars this might come from the oag also. It depends of the flatness of your field. When you rotate the OAG to different positions the effect might be greater. Sure thing is that the rotator has mechanically zero flex and can support very high loads. There is no way that this rotator can cause that.
  • Standalone utility is required as a server /command concentrator to support multiple clients. This is also required for the future ALT/AZ de-rotation server.

Edited by evansg, 21 July 2020 - 01:12 PM.

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#6 nightfly85

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Posted 21 July 2020 - 06:15 PM

After posting to the SGP forum and communicating with Pegasus Astro - seems like a possible fix for SGP is in the works - just have to wait for it.

 

In regards to reflection and elongated stars with rotater in place:

  • I was using the same setup the night before without either issue appearing and I've never seen either issue with this setup in the many months I've been using it thus the theory.
  • I simply placed the Falcon as close to the SCT adapter on my Edge 9.25 SCT and removed the equivalent amount of spacers/extenders so that my backfocus would remain the same (-23mm) on the scope side of the OAG. So now I have SCT -> SCT adapter -> 53mm Falcon Adapter -> Falcon -> Falcon 53mm adapter -> 48mm spacers -> OAG-> T2 spacers -> FW->Cam
  • I use 2" (48mm" spacers from SCT adapter scope side to my Celestron OAG and then run T2 (42mm) from there to filter wheel/cam. I do this so that the OAG can be placed outside of the cam sensor and I do not get any shadow on the sensor.

I did some more testing on another night - took out my guide cam and repositioned it 90 deg from its original position and then re-focused it. Nothing changed.

 

But the good news is using NINA, I was finally able to capture some lights with the Falcon in place and I see no abnormality that I can attribute to the Falcon. I stacked about 20 - 2 minute Blue frames with no calibrations applied what-so-ever as I thought it would show any and all defects. And I only got the usual dust blobs, dew marks, etc. If I can repeat the test with some Lum lights, that should finalize the issue.

 

Here's a close up of the Falcon on my rig. Note the adapter I'm using (53mm male to 48mm female) on the scope side seems to have a shiny thread portion - that could be it. Luckily the cam side of falcon is complete black so no issues there. But the inner lip of the scope side gives me pause. I can get out my black permenant marker and see if it can fix the issue, starting with the threading.

20200719 182820 (Medium)

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#7 Mert

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Posted 22 July 2020 - 10:02 AM

Still have to get out and try mine but it sure looks great!!



#8 nightfly85

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Posted 26 July 2020 - 12:11 AM

SGP issue resolved with version .539



#9 RogueSquadron

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Posted 11 September 2020 - 04:13 PM

Hello,

 

very interested in this rotator but depended on the INDI driver. Is this available already? Astroshop.de says so, but I could not find a driver to download on your site.

 

Best regards

 

Amin



#10 gcsexton

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Posted 29 September 2020 - 11:51 AM

Wanted to drop a note and say that I really enjoy this rotator! It's my first and I'm super glad for the purchase and it works well with SGP. One question that I have for the Pegasus teams is that I'm looking to thread it straight to my Moonlite focuser, but I was curious is the you know if I could use an M55 male to mate to the female M54 on the rotator? I've not tried it yet, but was curious if you knew if that would possible? 

 

V/r



#11 Stelios

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 03:15 PM

I imagine this is the proper chain for this rotator:

 

Focuser => [adapter] => Rotator => [adapter] => [Reducer/flattener] => [spacer] => [OAG] => [spacer] => EFW => Camera

 

Can someone please confirm this would work? It makes sense, as it would rotate reducer as well as everything else, allowing for a single set of flats with most systems. 



#12 Glutch

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Posted 01 October 2020 - 03:23 PM

Can you post the details on the adapter you used between the scope and the rotator.  I was going to get the M54 Male to M48 Female adapter to attach it to my focuser but noticed you got the M53 to M48 adapter.

 

 

 

 

After posting to the SGP forum and communicating with Pegasus Astro - seems like a possible fix for SGP is in the works - just have to wait for it.

 

In regards to reflection and elongated stars with rotater in place:

  • I was using the same setup the night before without either issue appearing and I've never seen either issue with this setup in the many months I've been using it thus the theory.
  • I simply placed the Falcon as close to the SCT adapter on my Edge 9.25 SCT and removed the equivalent amount of spacers/extenders so that my backfocus would remain the same (-23mm) on the scope side of the OAG. So now I have SCT -> SCT adapter -> 53mm Falcon Adapter -> Falcon -> Falcon 53mm adapter -> 48mm spacers -> OAG-> T2 spacers -> FW->Cam
  • I use 2" (48mm" spacers from SCT adapter scope side to my Celestron OAG and then run T2 (42mm) from there to filter wheel/cam. I do this so that the OAG can be placed outside of the cam sensor and I do not get any shadow on the sensor.

I did some more testing on another night - took out my guide cam and repositioned it 90 deg from its original position and then re-focused it. Nothing changed.

 

But the good news is using NINA, I was finally able to capture some lights with the Falcon in place and I see no abnormality that I can attribute to the Falcon. I stacked about 20 - 2 minute Blue frames with no calibrations applied what-so-ever as I thought it would show any and all defects. And I only got the usual dust blobs, dew marks, etc. If I can repeat the test with some Lum lights, that should finalize the issue.

 

Here's a close up of the Falcon on my rig. Note the adapter I'm using (53mm male to 48mm female) on the scope side seems to have a shiny thread portion - that could be it. Luckily the cam side of falcon is complete black so no issues there. But the inner lip of the scope side gives me pause. I can get out my black permenant marker and see if it can fix the issue, starting with the threading.



#13 jhart

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Posted 03 October 2020 - 10:29 AM

Is there any update on development of the software to control the Rotator to prevent field rotation for alt az mounted telescopes?



#14 Der_Pit

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Posted 04 October 2020 - 04:13 PM



very interested in this rotator but depended on the INDI driver. Is this available already? Astroshop.de says so, but I could not find a driver to download on your site.

In case you're not following the INDI forums - Jasem had just announced initial support for it in INDI.  You'll need the nightly builds though (or compile yourself).



#15 nightfly85

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 07:21 PM

Is there any update on development of the software to control the Rotator to prevent field rotation for alt az mounted telescopes?

Latest version has the support supplied.

 

Can you post the details on the adapter you used between the scope and the rotator.  I was going to get the M54 Male to M48 Female adapter to attach it to my focuser but noticed you got the M53 to M48 adapter.

I use a female M48 to M54 adapter as the SCT adapter supplies a male M48 thread. You do what works for your setup. I like using the fewest "pieces" to get the image train hooked up.

 

Use the rotater, a filter wheel and a OAG is impossible. With only 55mm of backfocus (or in the case of William Optics GT71 63.8mm) there's not enough room and I am using ZWO cams that only have 6.5mm of back focus to sensor; a 20mm filter wheel, Orion Thin OAG ~13mm, etc.

 

So when using a OAG, you got to place it in front of the focal reducer - but then (always a 'but'), you'll have to worry about focusing. Most if not all focal reducers need to be pretty close to the front of the focusing tube. With my WO GT71 I had to give up using OAG and went back to using a guide scope as I could find no solution with it and using the WO FR.

 

I imagine this is the proper chain for this rotator:

 

Focuser => [adapter] => Rotator => [adapter] => [Reducer/flattener] => [spacer] => [OAG] => [spacer] => EFW => Camera

 

Can someone please confirm this would work? It makes sense, as it would rotate reducer as well as everything else, allowing for a single set of flats with most systems. 

If you can attain focus, that is what I tried to do but I couldn't move the focuser "in" enough to attain focus.

 

For a Rotater->FR->OAG->FW->Cam setup you may find it to be impossible. If in your current setup if your normal focus point provides say about 40mm of focusing "IN" room then you may be ok with sticking the rotater in front of your FR. I had only ~35mm and it didn't work. I want to clarify this point: w/o the rotater in my "normal" setup, I had about 35mm of focus room IN. With the rotater there and the WO FR attached to the cam side of the rotater (not flush unfortunately as I couldn't find a M54 to M63 adapter which cost me 5mm) I ended up with only: 35 - 23mm - 5 = 7mm of IN focus remaining. I am guessing I needed about 10-15mm more.bawling.gif

 

If using a color CAM and OAG, then you'll be ok with: FR->Rotater->OAG->Cam

 

If using an SCT like my Edge 9.25 with 146mm of back focus - I had no issues with this setup beyond the adpaters (AgenaAstro has a great selection of adapters):

SCT adpater->Rotater->OAG->FW-Cam
 


Edited by nightfly85, 09 October 2020 - 07:47 PM.


#16 nightfly85

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Posted 09 October 2020 - 08:24 PM

Some final notes:

 

- Do not over tighten the cam side adapters to the rotater cam side while power is off. Just get it snug. The stepper Pegasus uses has a "brake" that allows it to hold position without power applied. When the power is on, the brake is disengaged and you can tighten it down against the motor which is less risky.

 

- Is using ASTAP solving, download the the latest version - it has better support for clusters and solving at angles. If not using it, I highly highly recommend it. Super fast with a responsive and active developer.

 

- When using a OAG setup, I still have to enable the PHD2 option in the "other" tab in the "Brain" settings "reverse angle of rotater" to get it to work. Ideally, calibrate PHD2 at angle 0 and all should be good. Make sure to add the rotater to the equipment profile.

 

- Don't expect +90 command to move CW 90 degress; it will move CCW 90 degress. This is what ASCOM expects. 0 to 360 CCW.

 

- I position the rotater so that the connector panel portion is UP. I use spacers to help it get into that position.

 

- I then position my cam in the position I want and then I "zero" out the home position in the Pegasus app after syncing to the sensors. In other words, I use a custom Home position.

 

- I use in SGP a +/- 0.2 degree tolerance with solving without issue.

 

Cable management is important! You need some slack so that the rotater can move through it's full range of motion with a cable snagging or getting tight. For my SCT setup, I used a "overhead" cable feed where the cables came up to the top of the SCT and then out to cam. This avoids any issue with snags on the mount.

 

However, for my fract WO GT71 setup, a overhead cable config is not possible and I have to under sling the cables. But note, I use a cable sleeve that helps minimize the potential of snags on the mount.

 

I use ZWO cams which have the built in USB hubs - it helps minimize cables required out to the cam area - which can be a pain to manage. Normally I use the USB on the cam for the guide cam and the FW. That leave the USB 3.0 cable and the 12v power for the cam cooler and another cable for the dew heater (one can use a Y cable for this, I do not).

 

Note, in this pic I am using a FF. It's not a FR/FF. I was surprised at how far back I had to go to get focus - this has nothing to do with the rotater of course.

Attached Thumbnails

  • 20201009_175950.jpg

Edited by nightfly85, 09 October 2020 - 08:35 PM.


#17 niccoc1603

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Posted 24 October 2020 - 05:17 AM

Nice equipment, one question I have it's not really necessary to rotate 0-360 since flipped images can easily be fixed in post and it prevents cable snapping. Is the rotator smart enough to only rotate 0-180°?

#18 Jim Lafferty

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Posted 07 November 2020 - 07:05 PM

Here is my new Pegasus rotator installed on my image train

 

Jim

Attached Thumbnails

  • IMG_2521-mini.jpg



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