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Meade LX 85 set up and alignment

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#1 Julio Lautersztain

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:01 PM

Hello everybody . I am a VERY new amateur astronomer. Located in Pucon in the south of Chile , with beautiful skies and very low light pollution.

I bought an LX 85 because of the promise of the Audiostar GoTo feature.

The scope was set up in an open field on a post specially built for it. Extremely well balanced. The polarization to the true south pole was done and is within the published parameters for the degree difference between magnetic and true south pole(5.7 degrees).

The latitude on the equatorial mount was set at 39 degrees for Pucon . The time was set at -3.0 GMT per the published parameter for Pucon.

My problem is that the aiming of the Audiostar software is way off and by as much as 30 degrees from the confirmed visual or the Stellaris app. It is the same problem whether I enter daylight savings or not in the set up.

What is interesting is that if I accept the aiming  in the easy align of Audiostar for the two stars even it clearly off, the software will indicate successful alignment . And after that it cannot even find the moon.

In the set up the site input for Chile only contains the capital Santiago as an option. So I tried both that input and alternatively adding Pucon with latitude and longitude with no improvement . Actually the menu option of the capital Santiago was a little better and slightly closer to the target but still way off.

So I do not know what to expect from Go To on Audiostar. Is a 20-30 degree variance from the target all I can expect and then adjust manually best I can.

I contacted the customer support  at Meade and the suggested a reset which I did  with no improvement. Now they are suggesting a PEC and Training the drive procedure which I have to read the manual for.

 

Needless to say I am getting a bit frustrated but I don't want to give up. I would appreciate any help I can get from this forum.

 

Best Regards. Julio



#2 spereira

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:05 PM

I am just guessing here, but you stated that you set your Latitude as 39 degrees - shouldn't that be minus 39 degrees or -39, or South 39?

Please forgive me if I misinterpreted something in what you said.

 

smp



#3 Chris Johnson

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:36 PM

Can you enter the current time in the 24hour format,ie military time? If so try that to see if there is any improvement. 30deg off target is 2hours in time.



#4 photoracer18

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 03:42 PM

What he says. Also is the mount set to the Southern Hemisphere? Correct date and time for your location if this mount lacks GPS. They usually come set for the factory where they test them if it does not have GPS. Southern Hemisphere is negative latitude and Longitude is the time zone minus the GMT time. Are in your DST time right now?  Time shows you are in UTC zone 4 but your actual time shows 3:33 which means you are in your DST time right now which is an hour off from your Universal time. Did you account for that?



#5 sg6

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 04:21 PM

I suspect another reset is required, old data seems to hang around.

 

You need to enter the handset menu and set a custon location, try PUC as the name,

Your Latitude is -39, or 39 South. Cannot recall the format they use exactly.

Your Longitude is -72, or 72 West.

Your Timezone is UTC -3

Once you have entered the TZ the menu cycles back to Name just press Mode to exit back out the location input.

 

Bit confused about the "within the published parameters for the degree difference between magnetic and true south pole(5.7 degrees).". You have to aim the scope at True South, not what might be some tolerance either way. Your wording has me a little confused. It's the "within" bit.

 

Will say I expect polar aligning an equitorial in the southern hemisphere will be tricky.

 

I begin to suspect that you have DST in action for where you are.

So when you start the 2 or 3 star alignment give the handset the Date and Time and DST status.

 

Never sure about training drives etc. I have 2 meades and have never yet trained a drive on either in all the years. I would also half guess that any training data is lost at a reset. And the one thing you get told is "Reset the scope". Someone may know better then I do but if lost then every reset means untrained drives.

 

Problems are usually Data, followed close by Operator. Sorry but at times some people decide to do it different and the software only knows one way. Believe me the assorted data errors and operator errors are many fold, some amusing, some amount to "You did what?"

 

The Lat and Long given are just the degrees, they should be accurate enough and makes it a little easier.

 

Slightly stupid question: The mount does default to Equitorial ?

Like it doesn't for some reason think it is an Alt/Az. Only ask as both mine are Alt/Az but one has a rotten habit of defaulting to equitorial.

Just thinking that would account for a 39 degree error. But expect it to read the mount and set itself, or push the scope into the mount.



#6 Julio Lautersztain

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 05:37 PM

The mount is equatorial and it is set like that. The setup menu does not have an option to change the mount
The time zone here is normally UTC -4 but now it is UTC -3 because of DST . So I set the time zone to UTC-3 on the input of Audiostar. Does this answer your question

#7 Julio Lautersztain

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 05:41 PM

As further reply to phototracer and Chris Johnson
There is no GPS included.
The input to Audiostar does not allow for military time as it is mandatory to select AM or PM

#8 Julio Lautersztain

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 05:45 PM

Also the true south was set by the solar noon method described in NOAA.

#9 SeattleScott

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 06:46 PM

One possibility is the post isn’t level, but hopefully that was verified when built.

Ultimately you enter all this data to try to help it find the first alignment star. Even if it is quite a ways off, you might want to go ahead and navigate to the correct star. Then the second star should be closer, and then it can calculate everything based on that. Although if it is too far off it might just say the alignment failed.

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#10 kathyastro

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Posted 03 March 2021 - 06:51 PM

The mount is equatorial and it is set like that. The setup menu does not have an option to change the mount
The time zone here is normally UTC -4 but now it is UTC -3 because of DST . So I set the time zone to UTC-3 on the input of Audiostar. Does this answer your question

No.  If you set it to UTC-3, then you must say that DST is off.  The correct setting is UTC-4 and DST on.  The time zone remains at UTC-4 all year, regardless of the DST setting.


Edited by kathyastro, 03 March 2021 - 06:51 PM.


#11 Julio Lautersztain

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Posted 04 March 2021 - 06:20 AM

In reply to to Seattle Scott and kathyastro.

The post is perfectly leveled and the mount bubble is smack center.

When I manually correct the position of the telescope to the first star, the second star is still off by altitude but closer to it.

I input the UTC AS - 4.0 and selected DST as Kathyastro suggested  but it did not change things much.

Somehow I suspect that the software does not acknowledge the input of my location’s latitude and longitude under the add site option in the setup.

can training the drive improve this deficiency.



#12 SeattleScott

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Posted 04 March 2021 - 07:41 AM

But if you manually correct the second star too, do you get a successful alignment or does it say failed alignment? If you can get a successful alignment, then you should have pretty good GoTo accuracy, and if it is still off you can add more alignment stars to fine tune accuracy in different parts of the sky.

Scott

#13 michael8554

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Posted 04 March 2021 - 07:51 AM

Time:   You can select AM or PM or 24HRS with the scroll buttons

 

Always enter Local Time, and then twice a year change DST to ON or OFF

 

Date :  04 March 2021

 

Site:  Best to EDIT, to be sure you're altering the stored location.

 

Meade Format for Site is:

 

Lat:      38   54 South

 

Long:  072  59 West

 

Both in Degrees/Minutes  format

 

Time Zone:    -4  all year round




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