Last updated: 28 February 2002
This page is for user comments and information specific to the new Meade ETX-105EC. Comments on accessories and feedback items appropriate to other ETX models are posted on other pages. If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or answers to questions posed here, e-mail them to me and I'll post them. Please use an appropriate Subject Line on your message. Thanks.

Subject:	ETX-105EC
Sent:	Tuesday, February 26, 2002 18:14:50
From: (John)
I currently have an ETX-90EC.  Do you think that it would be worth
selling off the 90 and getting an ETX-105EC instead?
Mike here: Depends upon what capability the ETX-105EC would provide you that the ETX-90EC doesn't. Yes, it has more aperture and focal length but in a somewhat less (but not much less) portable instrument. You might also have to upgrade your tripod, so that would add cost. Your choice; the -105EC is a nice instrument and a good compromise between the -90 and -125 models.
Subject:	Question re Meade ETX 105
Sent:	Sunday, February 17, 2002 6:37:08
From: (Jack Winberg)
I'm just getting my feet wet in astronomy, got a Meade ETX 90 RA and am
quite pleased with it.

NOW I would like to move up to an Autostar unit and am considering a
Meade ETX 105.  I would like to do some astrophotography with my Canon
D30, but note that the RA lock on my ETX 90 was so weak, that it would
not work well.  If I tried too hard to lock it, I'm sure it would strip.

I understand that the bearing and lock assembly on the 105 have been
beefed up, would it be possible to use my D30 on the 105?  Will it track
with that heavy a camera body on it?

THANKS for any help.

Jack Winberg
Mike here: It will track better but if the camera is extremely heavy there could still be some slippage in some orientations.


The Canon D30 body weighs two pounds, too heavy to track with the
Mike here: Probably OK in most orientations.
Subject:	Focuser mess-around for ETX105
Sent:	Thursday, February 14, 2002 18:31:03
From: (Jerusaln)
I am myself a faithful fan of your web site. I sold out my old ETX90EC,
to which I added a couple of metal bearings (hard work to find the
correct ones). I got an ETX105EC recently, but I heard the Meade
electric focuser doesn't fit well to it.

Is there any help so far for ETX105EC users on this particular subject?

I had another question. Is it easy and safe for telescope to collimate

My old ETX-90EC got worse with time on the star-test, but I never got so
brave as to open the thing and turn the collimation screws.

Was I a coward cow?

Well, God's willing I will post my experiences and photos through your
website in next months. I think they could be helpful.

Madrid (Spain)
Mike here: Some people have had problems with the Meade focuser and apparently some have not. You can always try one and return it to the dealer if it doesn't fit. Check with the dealer before purchasing however. As to collimating an ETX Mak, see the collimation articles on the Telescope Tech Tips page. You may or may not want to attempt it; you can easily end up making things considerably worse than they were before you started.


I am so thankful for your fast answer. I didn't expect it to be so fast!

My strong doubts about the focuser came becouse of these comentaries at
your site:

It seems #1244 is the right one, but in that page we can read this:

"I exchanged a private email with Bob Shutan about his post of 3/12/01 -
he noted that his comment that the #1247 focuser would suit the ETX 105
was incorrect. I've experienced the same problem as others regarding the
#1244, and will try the #1247 once the silly season is over. (The Meade
site and the manual both state that the correct unit is the #1244.)

In the interim, I dropped an email off to Meade's engineering department
to see if they can suggest something. I'll keep you advised of any

Or this other one at:
"I went to get the 1244 focuser and was told by the owner of the shop I
went to (Scope City in Costa Mesa, CA) that it does not fit the 105,
just the 90. We tried it on a 105 and discovered that yes it fits, but
poorly and does not focus well at all. The 1247 does not fit the 105 in
any way shape or form."

Well, that's all, and that's the reason I am concerned about the
focuser, becouse of these comentaries.

I'd like to receive the updated Meade focuser that would perfectly fit
Meade, that's the reason for the question, becouse I will get the
telescope from USA by means of a friend who will personally go to the

Clear skies

Mike here: That's why I noted that some have had problems.
Subject:	Me Again - Autostar No 105 listed
Sent:	Saturday, February 9, 2002 10:38:32
From: (Michael Kaye)
Sorry to bother you again. I've just plugged my Autostar into the ETX
105 and during setup I'm asked to identify my scope. Unfortunately it
doesn't appear on the list (only 90 or 125). Can I choose either of
these and will the ETX/Autostar still work correctly? Or do I, as I
think, have to upgrade the Autostar Firmware?

The other problem is that I am exclusively a mac user. I've read the
notes on the site about about upgrading Autostars from a mac but can I
confirm that for my USB based powerbook, all I need in addition to the
Autostar Connector kit is a Keyspan USB to Serial Adaptor? I have
Virtual PC 5.01 and usually use OS X but will switch back to OS 9 if I
need to.

Thanks again, Michael.
Mike here: If you update to Autostar ROM 2.3Eb you'll get the ETX-105EC selection. But in the meantime you can use the ETX-125EC. And you can update from the Mac. There is apparently a known problem in VPC 5.0.1 with USB items. I'm still trying to make a workaround work but Connectix is supposed to be releasing a fix. This problem is only when running VPC in Mac OS X; I don't think the Mac OS 9 version has a problem but haven't confirmed this. And yes, currently you'll need the Keyspan converter.
Subject:	ETX 105 Horizontal Lock
Sent:	Saturday, February 9, 2002 9:29:22
From: (Michael Kaye)
Just got my ETX 105 and I have a question with regards to the horizontal
lock. Basically, when "unlocked" the lever sits as far to the right hand
side as possible. However when locking, the lever only moves about half
way across and pretty much sits in the middle (the motors do engage and
it does appear locked) However, my question is should it move all the
way to left and if so how difficult should it be to get it there.

Thanks in advance, Michael.
Mike here: That is the correct locked position. Don't overtighten it.


Thanks for the very quick reply Mike. Its a great relief to find your
site and all the info on it. For a while there I thought I was on my

Subject:	Etx 105 RA Stiffness
Sent:	Friday, February 8, 2002 9:56:51
From: (Joe Herzing)
Just got a new 105 and it is stiff to move in the RA even when
completely loose.  Is this normal?  The one in the store seemed also to
me to be stiff.
Mike here: It is "tighter" than earlier models. You can try rotating the forks several times through several rotations, back and forth. That will distribute the gear grease more evenly.
Subject:	ETX 105 Experiences
Sent:	Thursday, January 31, 2002 21:06:12
From: (ETX_Astro_Boy)
Just wanted to give you an update on my ongoing experiences with the
ETX-105 I got for X-mas.

As you know I had a bit of a problem getting it aligned and slewing to
the correct area on the sky even after doing Resets, calibrating and
training the motors, etc.... Not to mention the numerous Motor Unit
Faults I was getting.

So I called Meade and asked what could be the cause of these problems
and what my options were. They told me it could be the encoders were
dirty, there was a loose gear, or other mechanical problems, and that I
could either send it (or bring it since I live about 7 miles from them)
in for repairs which would take about a week or two, or I could try and
exchange it where I got it from (Discovery Channel Store).

So I got the reciept from my wife and Exchanged it a nearby DCS and at
the same time swapped my #883 tripod for the #884.

Get it home and of course it is over cast and cloudy for the next few
days. GRRRRR I did at least do a reset, calibrate and training session
on the scope one afternoon.

Finally get a chance last night to take it out and see if there was any
difference.  Set it up outside, Did a very rough leveling (I do miss the
bubble level on the tripod) and north align in Alt-Az mode. Chose Easy
align and it started slewing. Missed Sirus by a long shot as well as
Aldeberan (Could be I was nowhere near north aligned (Could not see
Polaris to tell till later).

So I reset and chose two star align this time and still was off by a
long shot. But when I slewed manually and told the autostar that each
star was centered and the alignment was successful, the fun began.

I could hear the motor tracking (something I could not in the previous
scope unless my ear was right up to the housing). Selected Jupiter and
hit goto.... Bingo! Right in the ctr of the Finder scope AND the Ctr of
the eyepiece. Next M42... Again right on the money. 7 sisters... Saturn,
the moon, all dead ctr. Then I selected polaris to see if I was correct
in my assumption of north. slew..... Slew..... Bingo right where I
expected it since I could now see the dipper and use the line method to
determine where it should be.

So as a note of warning to all those having problems with alignment and
tracking Or the motor unit fault issue.. See if you don't have a faulty
scope. I did and now that I have a good model I couldn't be happier.
Star party this weekend. here I come.


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