DS MODELS USER FEEDBACK
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Last updated: 31 January 2002
This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade DS telescope models. Accessories and Feedback items appropriate to the ETX models are posted on other pages as appropriate. 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:	DS-127 drifting off objects and causing vibration
Sent:	Tuesday, January 29, 2002 12:06:10
From:	alan@johnson.za.net (Alan Johnson)
I recently bought a DS-127 and have been extremely pleased with it.  The
only problems I have with it are:

1.  When I select an object, the scope generally gets it right, but I
mostly have to move the scope slightly with the motor controls on the
Autostar.  The object then drifts out of view very slowly (slower than
it would do without Autostar tracking).

2.  If the scope is tracking an object, there seems to be a very slight
vibration which blurs the image.

Is there anything I've missed when setting it up, or is there some other
problem with the scope?
Mike here: I suggest reTRAINing the drives from the Autostar menu. This will cure most ills in GOTO and tracking. As to vibrations from the drives, be certain to not overtighten the axis locks. You can reduce vibrations by lowering the height (adjustable tripods), adding weight to the tripod, putting the tripod legs on "vibration suppression pads" (sponges or soft surface like dirt instead of concrete), or various other tips to increase stability of the telescope/mount combination.
Subject:	Re: What is this?
Sent:	Monday, January 28, 2002 22:24:43
From:	Raymond.Barbour@za.didata.com
To:	justanauthor@mail.com
This is the adapter for 2" eyepieces. Just screw off the 1.25" adapter
and screw this one on!
Raymond
South Africa
And:
From:	rpollack@city-net.com (Ronald R. Pollack)
The part that you're inquiring about is a eyepiece holder for 2 inch
eyepieces.  You just unscrew the current holder that is on the scope and
replace it with this one.  Now you can use 2 inch eyepieces.

Ron
www.city-net.com/~rpollack
And more:
From:	bobrose500@comcast.net (Bob Rose)
Shannon,
The piece that you sent a photo of on Mike Weasners site is the 2"
eyepiece adapter. To use it just unscrew the 1-1/4" adapter off the
focuser and screw on the 2" adapter. You will also need a 2" eyepiece.

Besides "Park" the autostar can "Sleep". The motors will stop but the
internal clock will run as long as the power is on.

Have fun
bob rose

Subject:	Thanks for your Great website
Sent:	Monday, January 28, 2002 20:00:18
From:	lahrman@computelnet.com (David F. Lahrman)
I happen to come across your website while looking for the 505 connector
cable.  We bought our daughter the DS-60EC telescope for Christmas.  We
recently received the 495 Autostar controller and the electronic
focuser.

This weekend was the first time we used the 495 to control the
telescope. I was impressed with how it works but have several questions.
 I will ask later after I read the rest of your website and use the
controller more.

We killed a set of batteries this weekend, so I just bought the
RadioShack transformer. I was glad to see your website suggest the same
thing.

Thanks for the wiring diagram for the 505 cable.  I can make assemble it
based upon your diagram.  Do you have a wiring diagram so that I can
power the 495 (with a 9 volt battery) without having to take the
telescope upstairs to the computer?  I saw a website that says that it
can be done but it does not show the wiring diagram.

Thanks

David Lahrman
Mike here: There is a power supply you can make for the Autostar. There are a couple of articles on the Autostar Information page under the "Cable and Power Information" section.
Subject:	What is this?
Sent:	Sunday, January 27, 2002 17:25:20
From:	justanauthor@mail.com (Shannon L. Story)
I just bought a Meade DS 2114ATSE (which is not on Meade's web site).
After a long, frustrating, confusing readthrough of the manual (that has
no graphics to speak of, for my model) I've been bumbling around trying
to get the telesope put together.  I finally did ... after looking at
the box and trying to make it look like the picture. When I got through
putting the pieces together, I have one piece that I can't figure out
where it goes.  Of course, there's nothing in the manual.  I've attached
a photo of it.  Would you by any chance know what this goes to?

S.L. Story
DS part

Mike here: Looks like an adapter of some sort. Is one end threaded by any chance?

And:

Thanks for the speedy replay. Wow!

Yeah, one end is threaded. I thought maybe it was some kind of adapter
ring for a camera.  I bought a T-ring for my Canon and it doesn't fit
that either.  The instructions said I had a packing list.  I didn't.  
Gonna have to call the place were I got it and find out what's going on.

Oh, while I'm here.  Can I ask another (dumb) question?   Besides the
ON/OFF button on the Computer Control unit, is there another way to stop
the unit other than using Park?  I guess what I'm trying to say is ...
can I turn it OFF when it sounds like it's moving, or is there a control
in the hand-box that says stop, then I can turn off the whole unit, of
is that what park is for?

Shannon

Love your site, even though there's not much about my model
(DS-2144ATSE) They really do need a "Meade for Dummies" like me."  :)
Mike here: What's the diameter of this item? As to an off button, Park is to turn off the power without loosing your alignment. Then you come back later, power on, and all is well. Other than loosing your alignment, there is no harm in powering off while the drives are running.
Subject:	Your Assistance Please
Sent:	Sunday, January 27, 2002 0:51:50
From:	thx1326@swbell.net (Hi-Fi_Guru)
I have a Meade DS2130 mount and an AutoStar 497.  What software should I
be downloading into the 497?

Thanks
Mike here: The current version on Meade's site is 2.3Eb.
Subject:	AutoStar Comp. Control-492 or 493??
Sent:	Friday, January 25, 2002 21:03:19
From:	Jolooote@cs.com
Hi. I bought a used Meade DS 114 AT.  It has the 20 button (0 thru 9 #
keys) AutoStar Hand controller.  I want to download/Update off meade's
www. site. How do I tell if I have the #492 or #493 Comp. Control
System and the #495 or #497 HandController?  There are no markings or
labels to tell. I looked in the 'Statistic'  menu, nothin. I'm told some
of these scopes were originally equiped with the #492 and the #494
HandControler (no # keys) and later models included the newer # 495 or
#497 HandController. If it already has the newer #493 System and #497
HandControl, I won't need to update. Thanks
Mike here: The #495 and #497 Autostars have the numeric keypad. Check the ROM version number in the Statistics menu. The current version is 2.3Eb.

And:

Thanks much. Mine says 2.0g. Whats that tell me? Thanks again.
Mike here: That's the ROM version number. You have either the #495 or the #497. Upgrading to the current version on Meade's site will give you a #497 equivalent whether it was originally a #495 or #497.
Subject:	Meade DS-114 parts
Sent:	Friday, January 25, 2002 15:00:06
From:	fmoon@vvm.com (Frank Moon)
I have a Meade DS-114 that was knocked over, the worm gears in the
electronic positioner broke and the focus barrel lost some teeth. Do you
know where I can get parts, I cant get a response from Meade.

Thanks,
Frank Moon
Mike here: Meade is really your only choice for "Meade" replacement parts. You can try your dealer but they will probably not have any. Alternatively you might be able to use parts for homemade telescopes. Check the ads in the back of Astronomy or Sky and Telescope.
Subject:	PC to Meade 4504
Sent:	Friday, January 25, 2002 8:13:18
From:	Joe.Peden@thermolabsystems.com (Peden, Joe)
Is it possible to connect and control  the Meade 4504 from a PC???

Thanks in Advance.

Joe
Mike here: You can if you have the right cable for its "Autostar". If the one without a keypad (#494) then you need to purchase a #506 cable (which comes with some Windows software). If you have one with a keypad (#495 or #497) then you can purchase or make a #505 cable (details for making one on the Autostar Information page on my ETX Site). Then you would need Windows software that can control the ETX (see the various Software pages on the ETX).
Subject:	controlling a 4504 from a PC
Sent:	Saturday, January 12, 2002 12:55:02
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (richard seymour)
To:	shannonbooks@midiowa.net
in order to control a 4504, you need to build an "AUX" jack,
which would accept the 506 cable/converter set.

How to do it is actually -on- Mike's site (he can't remember 
-everything- that's on there, but us authors do...)

at:
http://www.weasner.com/etx/techtips/ds_auxport.html

If you have not yet purchased the 506, it is frequently more
cost-effective to buy a 495 Autostar -instead-, build a 505 cable,
and proceed from there.  You will need to download the current
(v23eB) firmware from MEade, which will tell the 495 how to:
(a) become a 497 (with 30,000 objects!)
(b) deal with GEM mounts (like the 4504's)

I'll be publishing a patch soon to add the 4504 to the Autostar's
known list of models.

have fun
--dick

Subject:	re: 114EQ-DH at Amazon
Sent:	Saturday, January 12, 2002 12:51:47
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (richard seymour)
To:	Jolooote@cs.com
Yes, the 114EQ-DH  should include the Starfinder model of Autostar.
(which is the 494 Autostar (no numeric keypad) with GEM (see below)
programming).

It (the system) is exactly equivalent to the Meade 4504 scope.

a 114mm Newtonian, on a German Equatorial Mount (GEM).

There is a very active Egroup:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/meade4504telescopes/messages/

which covers those two models extensively.

With the advent of v23eB firmware, now the 495/497 Autostars can also
be convinced to drive GEMs.. although they still don't "know" 4504s
or 114EQ's as a listed model.  But it works... (you have to manually
change the Ratio numbers).

enjoy it if you buy it... the $135 is a -great- deal.
It's a very nice scope (i've spent one overnight with a 4504)

have fun
--dick

Subject:	Meade Infinity 114EQ-DH
Sent:	Tuesday, January 8, 2002 16:52:10
From:	Jolooote@cs.com
Hi. Amazon.Com sells a Meade Infinity 114EQ-DH, no # after the DH, such
as 'DH4'.  They don't describe the item well and their help line knows
nothing. Question; does anyone know if this scope has the
'AutoStarfinder GO-TO' capability which automatically aims the scope at
a target? Please e-mail at jolooote@cs.com

Mike here: It sounds like a DS model, which does work with the Autostar.

And:

I'm trying to find out for sure if the one listed (Meade Infinity
114EQ-DH) no # after the DH has the GO-TO function. They only want
$135.00 which make s me wonder. I was hoping someone was familiar with
that specific designation.

Subject:	114EQ DH4 meade telescope
Sent:	Sunday, January 6, 2002 19:31:03
From:	shannonbooks@midiowa.net (Shannon Books)
Sorry about this but I found your email address on the internet.  I have
a question on my telescope.  I bought a laptop computer thinking I can
hook it up to my telescope through the 494 autostar.  But looking at it
it doesn't have phone jack in so I have doing research on the internet
and found a #506 cable connector is this the one I would need to be able
to update the autstar, also would I be able to control my telescope with
the programs that my telescope came with since this is why I bought my
laptop.  Again I am sorry for writing you but I am stuck, appreciate any
feedback.

                                                             Thankyou
                                                         Shannon Books
Mike here: Yes, you would need the #494 cable from Meade. It comes with software that will let you control the telescope from a Windows computer.

Subject:	DS2060
Sent:	Saturday, January 5, 2002 20:47:54
From:	rhurst@telerama.com (Richard Hurst)
I found your site while looking up info on the Meade DS2060.  I'm trying
to find the minimum focussing distance for that model and it's no longer
on Meade's site.  Can you help?

rhurst@telerama.com

Subject:	Meade DS-2060
Sent:	Friday, January 4, 2002 11:30:17
From:	Gregg.Tompkins@ftw.nrcs.usda.gov (Gregg Tompkins)
I just recently puchased a Meade DS-2060 and can fin absolutly no
information on the net.  The Meade website does not even have it. What's
the deal? Any idea?

Gregg

Subject:	Meede DS-144 (Saturn) scope.
Sent:	Wednesday, January 2, 2002 15:18:43
From:	pjackins@erols.com (Paul Jackins)
I am having a few problems using the above scope which I purchased for
my granddaughter.  First the spotting scope and the telescope are not
aligned.  There seems to be little that can be done to move the spotting
scope.  Secondly is the easy method calibration (AstroStar 945) does not
seem to work.  Using a compass I located north, and approximated the
zero elevation as best I could. My location is 12 miles west of Ft.
Meade MD.  I tried to find Saturn, and the moon which was nearly full on
Dec 28, 2001.  Any hints?
Mike here: I have no experience with the DS models. I suspect that the finderscope should be able to be aligned to the main scope. Are there some bolts that hold it in a bracket? As to the Autostar alignment, remember that True North and Magnetic North are not the same thing. You need True North for astronomical purposes. To find the "Magnetic Variation" for your location see the link on the Astronomy Links page. If you need further help with the alignment process, see the tips on the Autostar Information page.
Subject:	DS-114 AT
Sent:	Tuesday, January 1, 2002 22:29:53
From:	gvblk4@msn.com (Greg Vicki and Lauren K)
In December I purchased a DS-114 AT from Sams for 239.00. What a Deal. I
notice that the Dec seems to drift a few degrees after the Slewing
Process is complete. Why does this happen. I try to balance the Tube
weight equally in the Cradle Rings. I have added an Orion 90deg finder
that adds about 1/4 lb or so to the front of tube. Gears seem to be
slipping??

Also the 494 Controller has Constellation selections but the objects in
each  are not Messier, Sao or NGC etc. Seem to be stars only. It would
be nice to have to be ability to find all Objects within each
Constellation M31, NGC etc. Does the 497 Controller have this
capability. Also all Objects whether deep sky etc are not in any
specific order M31,M32 but just random?? Is there any upgrades for the
Code. Can this be changed. Things are just too scattered yet somewhat
organized.

Thanks for Your Help

Greg
Mike here: The #494 can not be currently upgraded although you can add your own objects using the Autostar Updater 3.0 (on Meade's site). I believe you are correct in that the constellation tours are just tours of the stars. But you can select Deep Sky-->Messier to go to specific Messier objects; similarly for others. As to the drift, could be due to a number of factors including improper HOME position or Autostar setup, wrong telescope model in the Autostar, etc. TRAIN the drives might help if everything else is correct.

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