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EQ6R pro polar alignment question

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#1 tita

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Posted 05 August 2021 - 10:41 PM

I am very new to all this, so I am assuming I am doing something wrong.

I got an EQ6R Pro almost a year ago and although I Iove the mount (except for some annoying things) I do have difficulty with polar alignment. Inittially I did PA using only the polar scope in the mount and using the polar app on the phone. Then I Iearned about Sharpcap and lately I got the ASIair pro. My issue is with adjusting the azimuth. Well, altitude is not the easiest with the provided hardware, but that is not my issue. My issue is that when I use either Sharpcap or ASIair, I have the hardest time adjusting the mount from left to right. For example, yesterday I was using ASIair and trying to wait patiently for the screen to refresh, even twice before adjusting the azimuth. I then adjusedt according to directions and again waited to make sure the image had refreshed to find out if I got closer. Often nothing moved much if at all. Then I try again just a tad followed by another round of patient waiting to make sure the image on the screen is updated. That goes like that for a few more very small adjustments when all of a sudden the result is a large movement and I went way past the place I was aiming.

 

The weird thing is that, althought the altitude adjustment knobs are hard, I find a good spot after just a few tries. In other words, my adjustment converges. With the azimuth adjustment is not like that at all, it is more like a drunken walk and I give up once I am close enough.

 

I must say that the very first time I used Sharpcap it worked like a charm and I was done with PA after just a few tweeks. I wondered if I had tighttened the screw that connects the mount to the tripod too hard. I looked for people setting up their EQ6R on you tube and it looked like they were really thightenning it. I am not a person with a lot of hand strength, I have some arthritis on my hands. I can lift the mount itself without a problem but making knobs very tight is hard for me (the knob on the weight comes to mind). But if I loosen the two screws for the azimuth and try to turn the mount after attaching it to the tipod, I can't without really putting some force. With that I figured it is not too loose. I doubt I am over-tightening. 

 

Does anybody have a clue what I could be doing wrong? Once I polar align, I am fine for the rest of the night and tracking is really good for my level of experience at least. But should PA really take like 20 minutes? Should I leave the attachment between the mount and tripod a little loose and tighten it after PA? Thanks in advance.



#2 Brainebula

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Posted 06 August 2021 - 08:01 AM

Keep the tripod bolt a bit loose until you're done with the Azi adjustment!

Just make sure you don't knock it out of alignment when you tighten it afterward. 

 

And you don't need to tighten the tripod bolt that much. Modest hand tight should be enough. Sure you can still force the mount to move about the Azi axis after you make it hand tight if you push the mount hard enough, but you'd have to push it beyond the capacity rating of the mount, and there normally should be very little torque vector about the azimuth plane under normal operating conditions after proper balancing. 


Edited by Brainebula, 06 August 2021 - 08:03 AM.

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#3 empiredown

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Posted 06 August 2021 - 09:21 AM

I only have a problem with this when I am not on level ground and have to extend a leg or two in order to compensate, for some reason. If I am level, I can keep the head mount bolts pretty loose and then that enables traversing to get into a good PA easier. If I am off kilter, then for whatever reason, it is very difficult to get the traverse. I have done the forum tricks on reducing friction for my head unit... I do tend to not mess with the elevation too much (unless it is up over 25' initially) until I get the traverse down to an acceptable level. Once both are creeping down toward 2', then I begin to fine tune.

 

One other trick I have found that works for me, I need to rotate BOTH left and right knobs at the same time (just one going "in"/one "out"...). That keeps things pretty snug and appears to reduce the time it takes me to get to PA. 

 

Good luck!

 

SS



#4 MikeECha

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Posted 06 August 2021 - 05:15 PM

I am very new to all this, so I am assuming I am doing something wrong.

I got an EQ6R Pro almost a year ago and although I Iove the mount (except for some annoying things) I do have difficulty with polar alignment. Inittially I did PA using only the polar scope in the mount and using the polar app on the phone. Then I Iearned about Sharpcap and lately I got the ASIair pro. My issue is with adjusting the azimuth. Well, altitude is not the easiest with the provided hardware, but that is not my issue. My issue is that when I use either Sharpcap or ASIair, I have the hardest time adjusting the mount from left to right. For example, yesterday I was using ASIair and trying to wait patiently for the screen to refresh, even twice before adjusting the azimuth. I then adjusedt according to directions and again waited to make sure the image had refreshed to find out if I got closer. Often nothing moved much if at all. Then I try again just a tad followed by another round of patient waiting to make sure the image on the screen is updated. That goes like that for a few more very small adjustments when all of a sudden the result is a large movement and I went way past the place I was aiming.

 

The weird thing is that, althought the altitude adjustment knobs are hard, I find a good spot after just a few tries. In other words, my adjustment converges. With the azimuth adjustment is not like that at all, it is more like a drunken walk and I give up once I am close enough.

 

I must say that the very first time I used Sharpcap it worked like a charm and I was done with PA after just a few tweeks. I wondered if I had tighttened the screw that connects the mount to the tripod too hard. I looked for people setting up their EQ6R on you tube and it looked like they were really thightenning it. I am not a person with a lot of hand strength, I have some arthritis on my hands. I can lift the mount itself without a problem but making knobs very tight is hard for me (the knob on the weight comes to mind). But if I loosen the two screws for the azimuth and try to turn the mount after attaching it to the tipod, I can't without really putting some force. With that I figured it is not too loose. I doubt I am over-tightening. 

 

Does anybody have a clue what I could be doing wrong? Once I polar align, I am fine for the rest of the night and tracking is really good for my level of experience at least. But should PA really take like 20 minutes? Should I leave the attachment between the mount and tripod a little loose and tighten it after PA? Thanks in advance.

I do not have an  answer for you. But it is funny you post this today.

 

My mount has always had that one spot where the Az jumps about 40-50 arc-secs and I have never been able to figure out the cause of the jump. The stud is not loose and does not spin. Since that has been just a small inconvenience I have not dug dipper into

 

However, last night I not only experienced it a couple of times but also I heard a "tic" as it jumped. And I think that is the bolt thread rubbing the side of the slot that limits the AZ adjustments. Last night I just put the tripod on my patio and did look how far from the pole it was pointing 

 

I do not remember how that area looks like and it might not be the problem but I will check when I have a chance.

 

Things that improved the smoothness of the knobs/bolts for me was to remove the original grease and re-grease them. I also added some grease on the hole where the cone on the bottom of the mount fits into. And I do keep the center bolt real tight by hand. 

 

Good luck



#5 tita

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Posted 06 August 2021 - 07:06 PM

Keep the tripod bolt a bit loose until you're done with the Azi adjustment!

Just make sure you don't knock it out of alignment when you tighten it afterward. 

 

And you don't need to tighten the tripod bolt that much. Modest hand tight should be enough. Sure you can still force the mount to move about the Azi axis after you make it hand tight if you push the mount hard enough, but you'd have to push it beyond the capacity rating of the mount, and there normally should be very little torque vector about the azimuth plane under normal operating conditions after proper balancing. 

It is quite possible I don't know my strength and I am overtightening. Sometimes when I am done for the night I do have a hard time unscrewing the tripod bolt. I will try to be more gentle and see if things get easier

 

I only have a problem with this when I am not on level ground and have to extend a leg or two in order to compensate, for some reason. If I am level, I can keep the head mount bolts pretty loose and then that enables traversing to get into a good PA easier. If I am off kilter, then for whatever reason, it is very difficult to get the traverse. I have done the forum tricks on reducing friction for my head unit... I do tend to not mess with the elevation too much (unless it is up over 25' initially) until I get the traverse down to an acceptable level. Once both are creeping down toward 2', then I begin to fine tune.

 

One other trick I have found that works for me, I need to rotate BOTH left and right knobs at the same time (just one going "in"/one "out"...). That keeps things pretty snug and appears to reduce the time it takes me to get to PA. 

 

Good luck!

 

SS

Yes, leveling could be an issue. I setup on my deck that is not the most stable location. I also only use the tiny bubble level on the mount. In regards to friction, what do you use? I was thinking maybe a thin nyon sheet cut like a washer to place between the mount and the tripod. I do use the two knob trick you mention.

 

I do not have an  answer for you. But it is funny you post this today.

 

My mount has always had that one spot where the Az jumps about 40-50 arc-secs and I have never been able to figure out the cause of the jump. The stud is not loose and does not spin. Since that has been just a small inconvenience I have not dug dipper into

 

However, last night I not only experienced it a couple of times but also I heard a "tic" as it jumped. And I think that is the bolt thread rubbing the side of the slot that limits the AZ adjustments. Last night I just put the tripod on my patio and did look how far from the pole it was pointing 

 

I do not remember how that area looks like and it might not be the problem but I will check when I have a chance.

 

Things that improved the smoothness of the knobs/bolts for me was to remove the original grease and re-grease them. I also added some grease on the hole where the cone on the bottom of the mount fits into. And I do keep the center bolt real tight by hand. 

 

Good luck

That is interesting, I will inspect my mount more closely. Also I will try to see if I can re-create the issue and check if it happens around the same spot. What grease do you use?



#6 MikeECha

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Posted 06 August 2021 - 09:50 PM

It is quite possible I don't know my strength and I am overtightening. Sometimes when I am done for the night I do have a hard time unscrewing the tripod bolt. I will try to be more gentle and see if things get easier

 

Yes, leveling could be an issue. I setup on my deck that is not the most stable location. I also only use the tiny bubble level on the mount. In regards to friction, what do you use? I was thinking maybe a thin nyon sheet cut like a washer to place between the mount and the tripod. I do use the two knob trick you mention.

 

That is interesting, I will inspect my mount more closely. Also I will try to see if I can re-create the issue and check if it happens around the same spot. What grease do you use?

I used SuperLub multipurpose synthetic grease on the knobs/bolts because I just had it at hand. But I think any type will do. I put White lithium grease on the tripod hole just because it is white. 

 

I see you level with the bubble on the mount. That level is useless.. You should try a level (from hardware store) on top of the tripod before you put the mount on. That is do it once and done even if you remove the mount.


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