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SkyTracker Pro Not Charging?

astrophotography mount
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#1 N1ghtSc0p3

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Posted 06 August 2020 - 10:58 AM

I pulled my SkyTracker Pro out yesterday, and plugged it in to charge. This morning, there was no LED charge indicator light on...so I turned the unit on, and the LED flashed at the "high rate" (approx 0.5Hz according to the manual), which indicates the battery charge is low. Now I'm getting a little concerned, as last night I tried three different USB -> Micro USB cords on other devices that have a more obvious "charging" indicator, just to ensure it wasn't the cable or a connector. I was hoping to use the SkyTracker next week when the moon is in the later half of waning. Any thoughts/suggestions/ideas of what else I can try? 

 

Many thanks!



#2 sg6

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Posted 06 August 2020 - 11:39 AM

Assuming the battery is a Lithium Ion (?) how long since last used and was it charged at that time?

Could be one of the cells has failed and so preventing others "downstream" from charging. Which would unfortunately means a new battery pack - and I have no idea if such is available.

 

If left empty and not used for some time a Li-ion will drop below a threshold after which you cannot charge it - hende the last time and state of charge. However I think it would have to be used, drained and left for a few months. But I did managed it on one of mine. Think I left my battery On, with small red LED draining everything slowly.

 

Would be nice if the battery were a set of standard Li-ions like say 18650's or something, guess smaller physically. I have a torch that uses a single 26650, it could I suppose be one of those as that is a chunk of battery and being 4.7v a usb should charge it.



#3 N1ghtSc0p3

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Posted 06 August 2020 - 01:51 PM

That's what I was thinking sg6. When I pulled it out of the case and turned it on, the Battery LED stayed lit, which according to the manual means that there is sufficient charge. The "fast blinking" LED means that the battery is low and needs to be charged. My problem is *after* starting charging is when the fast-blinking started. I ordered a replacement battery from iOptron ($20 +S&H), so hopefully that arrives sooner rather than later. And yes, it would be nice if it was a standard cell (its only 3.7V). This is def one area where the Sky Watcher line wins out, since they run on AAs. 



#4 N1ghtSc0p3

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Posted 14 August 2020 - 12:47 PM

Wanted to follow up on this...I replaced the battery, and plugged the board into power...and the charging light did not light up. When I turned the unit "on", the light came on, but soon was back to fast-blinking. The micro USB connector was a little loose, so I soldered the four connecting pins on the back side (these are all for the chassis of the connector, which is ground, so all four can be soldered)...and nothing. I think something is wrong internal to the board. So I've reached out to iOptron and inquired about a replacement board. We'll see what they say.




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