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Old 27-11-2014, 08:59 AM
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Merlin66 (Ken)
Spectroscopy Wizard

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PA alignment software/ imaging aid

Not sure where to post this one.....
Themos is looking for southern observers to test out his PA alignment technique.
I've had a go, but as I use AA5 built in plate solving it's not a "universal" solution. You may be interested in giving it a go:

http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/22...nment-utility/
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Old 27-11-2014, 10:11 AM
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Amaranthus (Barry)
Thylacinus stargazoculus

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I realigned the other night, after moving my mount to a new semi-permanent position (it gets carried indoors right now, but I have slots in the ground so I can get it back to exactly the same place). I used an initial alignment with Astrotortilla Plate solving, and then a final refinement with PHD2 drift alignment tool. Got bang on the pole within 20 min that way. Hard to beat!
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Old 27-11-2014, 12:10 PM
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Camelopardalis (Dunk)
Drifting from the pole

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amaranthus View Post
Got bang on the pole within 20 min that way. Hard to beat!
That AZ-EQ6 is sounding like it's worth its weight Barry

Best I can do is get within about 1', according to Synscan. Just need to start guiding now to ride over the PEC

Maybe we should have a sticky discussing polar alignment? It seems to come up often and I've always got questions
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Old 27-11-2014, 01:03 PM
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Amaranthus (Barry)
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Dunk, can you drive your mount with ASCOM? The really nice thing about using plate solving is you never, ever have to centre anything in an eyepiece again... (at least when using a camera)
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Old 27-11-2014, 02:08 PM
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Merlin66 (Ken)
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Just to bring things into perspective....
Lets assume:
1. The baseplate of your mount has the alt/az screws at a radius of 50mm
2. The thread of the adjusting screws has a pitch of 1mm

The required rotation of the adjusting screw (in degrees), to give 1 arcmin movement is:
50*(tan 1/60deg)*1*360 =50*0.0003*1*360 = 5.4 degrees
This is just over 1/100 of a turn of the adjusting screw!!!!

That's why it's a bit difficult to get exact PA adjustment.
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Old 27-11-2014, 02:10 PM
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Camelopardalis (Dunk)
Drifting from the pole

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Yeah I think I have it installed on my netbook, I just need to get around to trying it when I'm out at a dark site I just like to get on into observing/imaging and have stuck with the Synscan routine and some local drift mitigation if needed, not wanting to sacrifice valuable dark sky time.

Now the summer nights are here and my subs look an M&Ms snowstorm, hopefully I'll have a few clear nights to try stuff out before the good nights come back

But this is why I'm interested in this sort of software...to get polar alignment quicker and just get on with the night
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Old 27-11-2014, 03:16 PM
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Amaranthus (Barry)
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Good point Ken! The AZ-EQ6 mount has a beautiful 'winch' type adjuster for ALT which helps make fine increments. The AZ screws are cruder, but with patience can be adjusted reasonably well.

I can reproducibly get to within 10"/minute drift, which is fine with guiding.
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Old 27-11-2014, 06:19 PM
raymo
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As some of you may know, I don't guide, so with my rig am limited to about 120 sec subs. I have spent huge amounts of time getting down
to just a few seconds error, and have found that I get only a marginal
improvement in possible sub length over an error of a minute, which I
can achieve in around half the time. Consequently, I now am happy if
I get both axes under a minute.
raymo
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