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Thread: Polaris off 10 degrees?

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    Default Polaris off 10 degrees?



    So a few nights ago I was polar aligning my telescope for which I had my latitude set to my location at 40 degrees. I looked through my finder scope and found i was way off, which turned out to be 10 degrees, 50 degrees latitude. I recently got my telescope and thought the chinese manufacturing must have miss aligned my latitude scale. I thought it was weird, but I was aligned and checking out the moon with no problems. Then about 4 days later I took out my telescope and found that i had to set the latitude back at 40 degrees to be polar aligned and I found that oddly strange. Anyone ever hear anything like this happening?

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    Default Re: Polaris off 10 degrees?

    Which telescope do you have? make and model? It might be that you did not level on the first night and hence the difference. Also after aligning how much drift did you see? Meaning how fast was the moon moving once you got it in the eyepiece? Was it moving on both axis or just on the dec side as it should.

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    Default Re: Polaris off 10 degrees?

    Latitude scales are not known for their accuracy, but 10 degrees is a very large error.

    It is interesting that 40 + 50 = 90. Is it possible that sometimes you are measuring up from horizontal and sometimes you are measuring down from vertical? And, as Giri noted, the mount must be level for the latitude scale to be useful.
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    Default Re: Polaris off 10 degrees?

    As Keith noted, the OEM latitude scales are not known for accuracy. As such, invest in a simple digital level. It can help you get within about 0.05 degrees (3 arcmins) of your target. Also, a good polar scope is very helpful if our mount supports it. You also have to be careful not to align on Kochab instead of Polaris. They are within 0.01 magnitudes of each other and are within the same asterism. Both stars appear after sunset about the same time to your eyes. I have the hardest time aligning my mount after its been dark a while and the star field is rich with "options".
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    Default Re: Polaris off 10 degrees?

    Thanks, I'm assuming I wasn't level.

 

 

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