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My Autostar 497 hand controller has blank/garbled characters display but other functions are working fine.

Meade Maksutov Mount Equipment
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#1 gauravo2

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Posted 11 April 2021 - 02:50 AM

My Meade Autostar 497 hand controller has blank display & sometimes it starts showing garbled characters & for some times it starts normally and goes blank after 30 seconds or so. Other functions like slewing with arrow keys is working fine. I tried suggestions from other threads on Cloudynights forum for same topic like cleaning the display ribbon with alcohol and stuff but no luck. Please suggest any solution if you have successfully brought back display. Thanks in Advance. I have attached photos of my Hand Controller. Telescope is meade ETX-125 5 incher Maksutov Cass.

 

 

WhatsApp Image 2021-04-11 at 1.02.47 PM.jpeg WhatsApp Image 2021-04-11 at 1.14.54 PM.jpeg



#2 DAVIDG

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Posted 11 April 2021 - 10:25 AM

 What I believe is happening is the silver material used to make the contacts at the end of the cable becomes oxidized. Cleaning it will sometime remove the oxidization so you get a good contact. If the material is fully oxidized at the point of contact that may not work. What worked for me was  I trimmed a very small amount off the bottom of the ribbon cable. Now the cable will seat slightly farther into the connector  and make contact with a fresh part of the terminals on the cable. 

 

           - Dave 


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#3 gauravo2

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Posted 13 April 2021 - 12:03 AM

 What I believe is happening is the silver material used to make the contacts at the end of the cable becomes oxidized. Cleaning it will sometime remove the oxidization so you get a good contact. If the material is fully oxidized at the point of contact that may not work. What worked for me was  I trimmed a very small amount off the bottom of the ribbon cable. Now the cable will seat slightly farther into the connector  and make contact with a fresh part of the terminals on the cable. 

 

           - Dave 

Thanks for your suggestion Sir. I will try this out. just to cofirm- you are talking about the Display Ribbon cable inside the HC right.?



#4 DAVIDG

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Posted 13 April 2021 - 08:23 AM

Thanks for your suggestion Sir. I will try this out. just to cofirm- you are talking about the Display Ribbon cable inside the HC right.?

 Correct. The ribbon cable on the display. I just trimmed off about 1/32" off the end  so when the cable was pushed back into the connector, it made contact at a new place on the fingers of the cable.

 

              - Dave 


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#5 sunrag

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Posted 13 April 2021 - 08:40 AM

I agree. This worked for me too. Other people have had success with just cleaning the contacts, but mine just smeared off when i used Isopropanol.
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#6 gauravo2

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Posted 14 April 2021 - 10:58 PM

 Correct. The ribbon cable on the display. I just trimmed off about 1/32" off the end  so when the cable was pushed back into the connector, it made contact at a new place on the fingers of the cable.

 

              - Dave 

Okay, I tried this thing and it worked. Exept the display is now showing garbled character continuously and after some time it goes blank again. And I think I have already cleaned it with Methanol Alcohol so much, that the contact fingures are smeared off and not visible. so thats the problem I guess. And I will need new display I guess.



#7 gauravo2

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Posted 14 April 2021 - 10:59 PM

I agree. This worked for me too. Other people have had success with just cleaning the contacts, but mine just smeared off when i used Isopropanol.

Yes. my contacts also smeared off after cleaning with Methanol Alcohol.



#8 DAVIDG

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Posted 15 April 2021 - 09:03 AM

 There are silver conductive paints that comes in a pen that allows you to redraw the contacts that might work  Here is video that show how they work https://www.youtube....h?v=WY3d8N21OAE

 

                - Dave 



#9 mashirts

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Posted 15 April 2021 - 09:35 AM

If it were the lcd screen and connectors were at fault you would get a completely garbled screen I would think, not character after character of clear ASCII text.




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