Old 18-05-2020, 08:55 AM
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Andy01 (Andy)
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Tips for beginner with nice gear...

Hi folks,

I've been asked to mentor a guy in the UAE.
He's purchased a bunch of nice new gear but it seems that he has no experience!

Here's his gear -
Sky watcher triplet ED 80 telescope
Sky watcher AZ EQ6 pro mount
36 mm filter wheel 7 with chroma LRGB & 3 nm Ha, O2 and Si filters
Sky watcher 50 guide scope
Lacerta MGEN 3 autoguider and
Zwo 1600 mono pro cooled camera
Pegasus V2 also with all cables.

I'd like to help him out (if possible, I've not dealt with a completly new starter before!)
Can I ask anyone here who has experience with the ZWO 1600 mono & Pegasus unit for advice regarding best capture software, and thoughts on setting up the Pegasus?
(I'm assuming he's PC based.)


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Old 18-05-2020, 09:46 AM
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Harpage (Danh)
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I don't have experience with the ASI 1600MM, but I can highly recommend NINA for a capture software - it's free, and does everything you need to do such as mount and camera control, platesolving, automation, meridian flips, and much more.
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Old 18-05-2020, 11:02 AM
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The_bluester (Paul)
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I can't comment on the cam, or NINA, but SGP is a reasonable starting point software wise if he wants to automate focus, but APT is cheaper and in a lot of ways, easier to learn than SGP if he is going to focus manually. Focus control in SGP is/was better (APT may have changed in that regard since I moved on, focusing the SCT was an issue in APT due to the peculiarities of the SCT design, so I went to SGP which managed it reasonably well)

One thing to note if he is using an AZEQ6 from my experience with the Orion branded version, the clutch design is different to the EQ6 family and it makes balancing them differ.

Balancing the RA is tricky as the weight of the gear will make the clutch drag no matter what you do. I always weight it just delectably counterweight heavy as a result so at least I know what it is. Dec balancing needs a slightly different technique to a regular GEM where you rotate the RA to have the counterweight shaft horizontal. The RA needs to be rotated until it is slightly counterweights high to balance in Dec or the weight of the gear will make the Dec clutch drag as well.
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Old 18-05-2020, 12:24 PM
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billdan (Bill)
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If he is a raw beginner instead of trying to mentor him from Australia, he may be better off joining a local Astronomy Group. A Google search shows there are about four in Dubai.

EDIT: Having just watched your video presentation, I did not realise previously that the mentoring was a commercial venture for you, so forget what I said above.

Last edited by billdan; 18-05-2020 at 05:07 PM.
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