Good morning and thank you for stopping by. I am told this is the place to be for all my telescope needs. We run a small public outreach nonprofit observatory in SE Wisconsin. We have a 20' dome and 16" Meade lx200 ACF with GPS on a Az/Alt pier mount. One major problem throughout the years is the scope does not always know its end point and continues slewing until the command is aborted or I have to do a quick shut down. After which I need to perform a full alignment and that is often an unfortunate delay during a public show. I have done a few full rotations and did what I though was a reset on the parameters within the hand held and the program (TheSky Professional) we use to control the scope. There did not seem to be a correlation to the slewing past the end while using the program vs using the Autostar II, as it failed using both or either at certain times. We replaced the battery and the power supply and recently this has been less of an issue until last last night. It reached the point while I had a full group and I was unable to reach the power switch before it made a horrible grinding sound and now will no longer rotate. We can hear the motor turning but I assume a gear has slipped or stripped. The clutch seems fine as it turns normally with the hand knob and clutch released.
I know what we need to do access the RA assembly from underneath and also I have read that the plastic gears that come on the lx 200 are a common issue which is somewhat easily replaced with new brass gears from Peterson engineering. All of this is speculation until we remove everything and look under the hood.
My main question is how do I get this scope to always know which way to slew so it never hits this end point?
My second question is why do I have to tell the scope what the date and time is every single time I turn on? My toaster knows what time it even after I unplug it and plug it back in.
While I am a Physics and Astronomy pro, I am a complete telescope novice, so please use beginner speak in any and all descriptions or help that you may be able to provide. I attempted to read through the forums and found that I do not understand a large majority of professional telescope coded language and had to Google quite a few acronyms and still had difficulty understanding what parts they were describing.
We are concerned over how long we will be down and how difficult it may be to replace any Meade parts. As far as I can tell Meade is no longer providing any help on their products what so ever.
If anyone has any information that might help or know of any walk-through videos, we would really appreciate the help.