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Thread: Autostar, or Mount issue?

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    Default Autostar, or Mount issue?



    I have a LXD75 mount, with Autostar 497 controller. I've had the mount since new, and, there have been no updates to the Autostar 497, start up screen says version 43E. I have had to replace the handbox cable due to dry rot of the coiled insulation, and, replaced it a year ago with a 10 ft standard grey data cable off of ebay. There have been no issues with the replacement cable. This mount has been trouble free since new. Last night, a few times during alignment, the controller would quit responding to my manual slew inputs, and, the controller would just freeze up, unable to back out by pressing and holding the mode button. I would have to turn it off, and start all over again. A few times after getting alignment, it did the same thing when manually slewing the scope with the controller, it would quit responding, and freeze up. Again, I would have to turn everything off, back on, and realign to keep going. There was no particular orientation of the mount where this occurred. Is this a controller issue, or a possible mount issue? Has anyone else here experienced this, and, what did you do to resolve the issue?
    David
    Celestron 8" Starhopper Dob, Celestron 127mm reflector, Meade 114NT, Edmund Astroscan, ES AR102, Sky Watcher 102mm Mak, ETX 80, ETX 60, Sears Discoverer 4 6333a, Tasco 60mm, Meade LXD75, ES Twilight 1

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    Default Re: Autostar, or Mount issue?

    Check the continuity of the individual conductors in the replacement cable from the connections inside the handset to the pins in the plug. If you were sold a piece of ethernet cable, it has 8 solid wires, rather than stranded, which can break after repeated bending through normal use.
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    Default Re: Autostar, or Mount issue?

    Quote Originally Posted by lylestephens View Post
    Check the continuity of the individual conductors in the replacement cable from the connections inside the handset to the pins in the plug. If you were sold a piece of ethernet cable, it has 8 solid wires, rather than stranded, which can break after repeated bending through normal use.
    I must agree : I don't have a lot of faith in the "standard grey data cable off of ebay". I bought a AudioStar from OPT about a year ago for a spare for my LX90, I don't know if they would supply just the cable but its worth a try. You can replace your AutoStar with a AudioStar, that comes complete with a cable. But first you must make sure that you don't have any 12 Volt power problems : I only use an aux supply and have experienced similar problems with the plug that connects to my scope. I now secure the plug with a velcro strap.
    Last edited by Piet Le Roux; 01-08-2019 at 04:38 AM.
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    Default Re: Autostar, or Mount issue?

    On my last use, prior to setup, I took the time to clean all the connections, and made sure no pins were flattened down. I wrapped a bit of electrical tape around each end, to help stop the cable from making any sharp bends at the connectors. I also took a short length of velcro, and secured the scope ends of the data cord and power cord to the top of the front tripod leg. One of those fixes must have solved my issues, because it worked flawlessly for a few hours straight.

    Is there anything that can be rubbed into the coiled jacket of the cables, that will prevent dry rot and cracking? I've noticed a couple of spots on the declination cable now as well, along with it starting to turn white.
    David
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    Default Re: Autostar, or Mount issue?

    Quote Originally Posted by astrowolf67 View Post
    On my last use, prior to setup, I took the time to clean all the connections, and made sure no pins were flattened down. I wrapped a bit of electrical tape around each end, to help stop the cable from making any sharp bends at the connectors. I also took a short length of velcro, and secured the scope ends of the data cord and power cord to the top of the front tripod leg. One of those fixes must have solved my issues, because it worked flawlessly for a few hours straight.

    Is there anything that can be rubbed into the coiled jacket of the cables, that will prevent dry rot and cracking? I've noticed a couple of spots on the declination cable now as well, along with it starting to turn white.
    When it comes to plastic and rubber silicon spray is your friend : I spray all the plastic surfaces and cables with silicon once a year to protect them. Make sure its pure silicon and not mixed with petroleum products.
    astrowolf67 likes this.
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