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Star hopping with ski-Fi and Sky Safari Pro

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#1 JimP

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 08:19 AM

Hello,

 

I know it must be me but I cannot seem to figure it out. I am using ski-fi  and sky Safari Pro to find double stars. On two different nights with two different telescopes and two different mounts I found myself finding the first two or three doubles perfectly and then when I hit the screen or use the observing list to find the next double the telescope starts moving erratically and ends up nowhere near the new double. 
If I do not use the go to feature can I move the telescope using the keypad and my Mach1 mount? Will the sky safari pro show where the telescope is pointing as I move?

 

Thanks very much!

 

JimP



#2 btschumy

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 08:27 AM

Yes, SkySafari should always be showing where the telescope thinks it is pointing.  Approximately 4 times a second it queries the mount, asking where it is pointing and displays that.  
 

I assume you have some sort of field of view indicator displayed on the screen?  That is what will be centered on the scope’s location.  The screen itself will not necessarily be centered on the scope’s position unless you tap the Lock button in the scope control panel.

 

when I hit the screen or use the observing list to find the next double the telescope starts moving erratically and ends up nowhere near the new double.

What do you mean by “hit the screen”?

 

I assume you have done some sort of star alignment so the mount knows where it is pointing?  Can you do a GoTo using the hand controller and have it work?



#3 JimP

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 09:07 AM

Yes, I set up the scope and aligned it on Polaris then start up the mount from park one and align on two separate stars before I turn on ski-fi. By “hit the screen” I should say touch the next double on the screen that I want to observe.

The goto function on the Mach1 mount works fine. I use it to point the scope to Antares (for example) before turning on Ski-Fi and using the “connect” button to get started. As I said, after that, the first two or three doubles that I touch on the screen or choose from the observing list I made work fine. I don’t mind star hopping using the keypad as long as the indicator on the sky safari pro screen shows where the telescope is pointing.
Lock button?

 

Jim


Edited by JimP, 19 June 2021 - 09:10 AM.


#4 btschumy

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 09:40 AM

I really have no idea why the first couple of GoTos work but fail after that.  I’ve never heard of such a thing.  When it fails, does the field of view indicator seem like it is pointing to the same location as the scope?

 

The lock button is the on the scope control panel and is labeled either “Lock” or “Unlock” depending on whether it is currently locked.  All this does is cause the screen to automatically pan as the scope moves to keep the scope’s location in the center of the screen.  Swiping to move the screen when it is locked will cause it to unlock.


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#5 JimP

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 10:10 AM

Sitting in my observatory I started from scratch again but, found that the keypad was reversed so that when I hit the west button it turned the scope east and when I hit the north button it turned the scope south. There is a way to fix that on the keypad and I did. I don’t know if that had anything to do with it or not but using the sun as a starting point (the roof is on the observatory so the sun cannot be seen) everything worked perfectly. Using the keypad to move the telescope, the X on the sky safari pro followed it so that it appears I can star hop without using to go to if I want to. Then, I used the keypad to move the scope away from a certain star on sky safari pro then I touched  the star and the scope turned right back to it. I’m not sure what I did wrong or what I am doing right but I am very happy with the results. LOL

 

Thanks for your help. I appreciate it.

 

Best,

 

Jim


Edited by JimP, 19 June 2021 - 11:01 AM.

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#6 JimP

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Posted 19 June 2021 - 08:35 PM

OK, now I think I have it figured out what happed last night.

On the keypad there is an option called “Meridian Delay” which, in effect, fools the computer into believing that the Meridian is located further east or further west than it really is. That way if you are looking for doubles in a constellation that is on the Meridian you can “delay the meridian” so that you don’t have the telescope moving back-and-forth from one side of the mount to the other because of the location of the double relative to the actual Meridian.

At this same location on the keypad you can reverse directions so that when you hit the east button you can set things so the mount moves either east or west. While messing with Meridian delay I must have also been changing the direction the mount moves and screwed things up royally!
 Ye Gads!!

I hope this makes some sense.

Jim


Edited by JimP, 19 June 2021 - 08:40 PM.



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