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Thread: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5



    I own a iEQ45, and I'm always trying to make things a little better. I fabricated a belt tensioner a few months ago to eliminate the slack in the RA drive belt system. It worked fine, but was a little tricky to install, and it would not fit on the DEC side due to tighter tolerances under the cover. The DEC side had to be made differently to make it work.

    Since I live in Connecticut, I knew Eli Whitney and Sam Colt would be very disappointed if I couldn't solve this minor mechanical problem. So, after several versions and prototypes, I have arrived at Version 5, which is completely interchangeable between RA and DEC assy's, and is easier to install and adjust.

    Here's an image of my original prototype


    2Belt Tensioner by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

    And this is the final Version 5


    2. Adjusted Position by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

    Lots of aluminum scrap and swarf along the way, but the final version works like a champ. It even works in Australia!

    Caution kids, don't try this at home without adult supervision........

    Cheers,

    Paul
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  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Astronewb For This Useful Post:

    Astroboy@dunkeld (11-27-2012),ChuckWalters (11-27-2012),darethehair (11-27-2012)

  3. #2
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    That's a great idea, simple and effective. I have similar issues on my IPI393, can't wait to try out your idea

    Thanks for posting

    Lars
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Quote Originally Posted by Astroboy@dunkeld View Post
    That's a great idea, simple and effective. I have similar issues on my IPI393, can't wait to try out your idea

    Thanks for posting

    Lars
    You're most welcome Lars, this type of solution should work in almost any belt driven setup where there is room to install it. This fits under the covers and you can't even tell it's there. It almost totally eliminates all backlash in the drive gears (had to set my backlash back to '0' from 440), smooths out the spikes in PHD graphs and in some cases, reduces PE by a couple arc-minutes.

    Clear skies,

    Paul
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Can I get one?

    Great idea

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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Like it, nice fabrication. Noticed your black magic marker alignment mark. Have white-out alignment marks on my CG-5 since it's black. Makes it a lot easier to see the marks when setting up/aligning at night.
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Quote Originally Posted by slashman48 View Post
    Like it, nice fabrication. Noticed your black magic marker alignment mark. Have white-out alignment marks on my CG-5 since it's black. Makes it a lot easier to see the marks when setting up/aligning at night.
    Amen...great minds think alike...... I set up my mount inside, level all the components, including the OTA, and then mark the mount in anticipation of those 'oops' moments that occur during the heat of imaging...

    Cheers,

    Paul
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Quote Originally Posted by mega256 View Post
    Can I get one?

    Great idea
    Email sent...and sure.

    Best,

    Paul
    Life's a journey, enjoy the ride
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Enduring some miserable weather, I haven't used my scope, and have stayed away from forums to keep my sanity hehe, so just stumbled on this post, and I must say "Now we're talking!" Excellent work Paul! Looks like a factory part that went missing! I'd be very interested in the ins and outs of this clever device!

    I think that my iEQ45 will have to be relieved of it's 8" RC duty and I'll probably be looking at some wide field setup for trips with this mount. It would still benefit greatly from this mod I'm sure - plus maybe the upgraded worms... But I need to be clever with my cash and, well, save some - so spending is on ice a bit.

    Time to get that tinsel off my scope

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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Enduring some miserable weather, I haven't used my scope, and have stayed away from forums to keep my sanity
    I completely feel your pain Jes, same situation here in the North East USA...! Not quite as bad as your conditions, but I have been reduced to looking for 1-3 hour breaks in the clouds at weird times during the night, just to get in some imaging time.

    Thanks for the nice comment Jes, looking forward to some more of your 'balcony images' if you ever get some clear skies.

    Regards,

    Paul
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    Default Re: iEQ45 Drive Belt Tensioner V5

    Quote Originally Posted by Astronewb View Post
    I own a iEQ45, and I'm always trying to make things a little better. I fabricated a belt tensioner a few months ago to eliminate the slack in the RA drive belt system. It worked fine, but was a little tricky to install, and it would not fit on the DEC side due to tighter tolerances under the cover. The DEC side had to be made differently to make it work.

    Since I live in Connecticut, I knew Eli Whitney and Sam Colt would be very disappointed if I couldn't solve this minor mechanical problem. So, after several versions and prototypes, I have arrived at Version 5, which is completely interchangeable between RA and DEC assy's, and is easier to install and adjust.

    Here's an image of my original prototype


    2Belt Tensioner by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

    And this is the final Version 5


    2. Adjusted Position by Astronewb2011, on Flickr

    Lots of aluminum scrap and swarf along the way, but the final version works like a champ. It even works in Australia!

    Caution kids, don't try this at home without adult supervision........

    Cheers,

    Paul
    Very good Paul.. Your new version is very neat indeed.
    cheers.
    Graham.
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