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  1. #1
    Bradley H's Avatar
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    Default Little help with alignment



    Hi all I made my self an EQ platform witch is working nice but the alignment is giving a bit a problem. When I look a Saturn with the webcam in, Saturn moves out the top of the FOV (on the laptop) after about 8min. Dose this mean I must move the platform south bearing east or west? The angle of the south bearing is 51deg I stay a 51.608 deg. Do I need to lift the back bearing up or down? Thanks for any help
    Brad
    celestron 15x70 Bino ; Skywatcher 8" dob
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  2. #2
    kbeverage's Avatar
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    Default

    Actually eight minutes of tracking at that magnification is pretty good for an eq platform all things considered. That being said partly it's going to depend on the orientation of your webcam and it may still be a tracking issue in right ascension. If you orient the camera so that the rings are horizontal does Saturn tend to stay centered left/right in the field and just slowly drift up and out, or does it go at an angle? I'm guessing the platform has some sort of motor or clockwork to do the tracking - what happens if you turn that off, i.e. which direction does it drift? Finding out which axis is giving you trouble will take a bit of work but there should be a cure for whichever one it is, you may just need some small shims under the north end to raise it a bit or something equally simple.
    Kevin AD5VG
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  3. #3
    Bradley H's Avatar
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    Default

    The platform is driven with a stepper motor. Can make it stand still so that is just goes up slowly. When I turn it off it goes form left to right and down evey slightly in the field ( that is on the laptop if that makes any since). Saturn looks like the pic attached. That was with about 5/6 minutes before it got to the top of FOV. Have not tried looking through the eyepiece at any thing else with the tracking on as the sky dose not get dark enough and can't stay up that late.
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    celestron 15x70 Bino ; Skywatcher 8" dob
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  4. #4
    kbeverage's Avatar
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    Default

    Yes it makes sense. So it sounds like your RA tracking is pretty much on target but you've got some drift introduced by the polar alignment being off. Here's a modification of your image to help explain things:


    So if it were to drift along the orange line it would be a tracking issue (as you verified by turning the drive off); drift along the blue line is declination and indicates polar alignment needs to be better. Since I imagine you were imaging Saturn after sundown and it was somewhere above the western horizon it's probably a combination of east/west and altitude adjustments that need to be made. You could try raising the north end just a bit and checking it, then maybe tweak the east/west alignment. Unfortunately if you are storing the scope indoors and taking it out every time then you'll need to do this every time you set up.

    Good luck!
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  6. #5
    Bradley H's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks Kevin I do store the scope in doors. I put the scope in the same place all the time. So will just have to have a play with it all the time once set up. At least have a idea what to do.
    Thank you
    Brad
    celestron 15x70 Bino ; Skywatcher 8" dob
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