Last updated: 30 March 2006

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This page is for user comments and information of a general nature or items applicable to all LXD55 models. 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:	lxd55 ra motor
Sent:	Tuesday, March 28, 2006 12:26:26
From:	Jim Cadien (jcadien1@cox.net)
I found out the problem with my RA motor.  I removed the end of the
motor with the reduction gearing assembly in it...3 black gears and one
smaller while one.  The white gear meshes with the gear on the end of
the shaft coming out of the motor.  Three of the plastic teeth are
broken(or worn) part way. When that part of the gear contacts the shaft
gear it hangs up.  With enough force applied it will continue on.  The
gear is not repairable.

Do you have any idea where one might buy a replacement?  Those two links
you gave me earlier did not have anything for this problem.

Mike here: You could try Googling for something. Let me know if you come up with anything.
Subject:	lxd55 RA motor.
Sent:	Sunday, March 26, 2006 13:58:12
From:	jim cadien (jcadien1@cox.net)
Sorry to bother you again so soon.  I believe my RA motor has gone
south.  It began with my hearing the motor, but no tracking. The two
gears were meshing, but not turning.  I took the ra motor apart, but did
not see anything.  Put it back together, and it worked(in the day time,
so not sure of the rate) for a few minutes.  Then nothing but motor

Took it apart again, and running the motor with no gears it turns, but
with a clack-clack sound.

Questions: are the dec and ra motors identical, so they might be
switched?  Do you know if meade will sell the motor assembly?  I seem to
remember some time ago hearing that they would not.  Had to send the
entire mount back. Astromart currently doesn't have any motors

Thanks for any ideas,

Jim Cadien
Mike here: Have you checked for a loose gear? See my article "Fixing a Slipped RA Gear" on my LXD55 Site under the LXD55 / LXD75 Information section.


That's not it.  The two gears are not slipping at all.  A while back I
replaced the screws and loctited them in.  With the  motor out, the gear
on the gear on the motor rotates and does not slip when I hold onto the
gear. The gear going to the worm is also fine. And I can rotate the
polar axis by rotating the gear by hand.  Also, with no torque on the
motor at all, it goes clack-clack when turning.  I have had these motor
assmblies off a few times over the past 3 years and hjave never heard
anything like this from a motor.

Mike here: OK. The clack-clack could be from something catching someplace. I suggest checking for some obstruction.


I had taken the motor out of its housing, removed the gear, so there can
not be any obstruction.  I was holding the motor with my fingers while
having the autostar slew it. At all higher slew speeds it has the
clack-clack sound.  The guide rate sounds like it goes on-off-on-off.

Mike here: If the motor is turning on and off then I would suspect a motor problem. If the clack-clack sound is more constant then I would still suspect some obstruction, perhaps internal to the motor itself.


Well, Am I right that the insides of the motor are not repairable?  If
so, is there a source of new motors?
Mike here: If the motor mount has broken loose you might be able to repair that. But if the motor has gone bad then you would need to replace it. Try Telescope Warehouse or Scopestuff (links on the Astronomy Links page on my ETX Site).
Subject:	balancing an lxd55
Sent:	Saturday, March 25, 2006 09:21:25
From:	jim cadien (jcadien1@cox.net)
A quick question.  I have an lxd55 and a C8, with a crayford focuser, so
there is a liitle additional weight.  I did a test of balancing the ota
with the counterweights.  I moved the weights up the shaft until the ota
started to move down on its own.  Made a mark.  Then moved the weights
down until the weight side began moving down.  Marked it.  The two marks
are three inches apart.  Does this distance seem reasonable to you?  Or
is the polar axis not moving as smoothly as it should.  I have done a
home hypertuning, about 1.5 yrs ago.

Mike here: While I haven't measured it, I have noticed there isn't a single "balance point" but a range of what seems to work. I have attributed that to the lack of a frictionless mechanism. There seems to be some resistance to movement until a sufficient moment-arm is achieved with the LXD55 mount.
Subject:	Your Assistance...
Sent:	Friday, March 24, 2006 23:12:32
From:	Warp (warpcorp@swbell.net)
If I remember correctly, you have a Meade SC8...

Well, I just took the plunge and now own a brand new SC8 with UHTC. 
Looks like a beautiful tube.  I'm now awaiting the arrival of a JMI
Motorized SCT Crayford to make this my new imaging platform with a DS80
piggybacked for autoguiding with a LPI and imaging through the SC8 with
the new DSI-II.


I was thinking of flocking the inside of the OTA and the outside of the
internal baffle tube to squeeze out a little more contrast.... But... I
can not seem to get the rear cell seperated from the main white OTA
tube.  Is it superglued in place or what?  All the screws are out and it
will NOT budge... Any ideas or suggestions?

Thanks in advance.

Mike here: Good question. Since the OTA is the same as used on the LX200 models, you might check the MAPUG.com site for info on removing the rear cell.
By the way, your email was originally DELETED UNREAD as SPAM due to the ambiguous subject line. Please read the Email Etiquette page on the LXD page to avoid this happening in the future.
Subject:	Can you use an LXD55 without the DEC motor?
Sent:	Monday, March 13, 2006 14:58:37
From:	The Simpsons (assimpson@tiscali.co.uk)
I'm building a camera rig based on an LXD55 for taking to the total
eclipse in Egypt at the end of March. I want to use the RA drive only
and use the mounting brackets that the DEC motor etc. sits for the
camera mount. I am using ball and socket mounts for the cameras for
declination and will polar align the mount use a compass, level gauge
etc. this saves a lot of weight as you can balance the cameras on the
bracket and dont need counterweights etc. (I saw a guy with a similar
rig in Madrid in Oct. last) the problem is that if you disconnect the
Dec Motor the RA drive goes nuts and just starts rotating. One solution
is to remove the Dec Motor itself and take it with me but I wondered if
there is a simpler way to run the RA motor without the DEC being plugged

I've also posted this on the Yahoo user group.
Any suggestions welcome.
Al. Simpson
Mike here: Well, yes you can physically remove the drive but the same problem will likely appear since there is no difference; it is electrically disconnected in both cases. Let me know if you find a solution.
Subject:	Is the Meade LXD75 8SC rear cell standard threading?
Sent:	Sunday, March 12, 2006 08:04:22
From:	dennis sebranek (denmikseb@yahoo.com)
Is the Meade Lxd75 8sc rear cell the standard SC threading to accept
components from different manufacturers?  I have aked this question of
several on-line scope retailers and have been told both yes and no.  I
have the impression it is a non-standard threading.  Thanks, Dennis
Mike here: It is as standard as can be.
Subject:	Focuser Assembly on Meade LXD-75
Sent:	Wednesday, March 8, 2006 12:35:23
From:	Scott Lytle (s.lytle@sbcglobal.net)
My question I am shooting out there to you is:
Is there any alternative to the Rack and Pinion focus assembly the came
standard with my telescope?

I am fairly new to the telescope world, but have found that this Rack
and Pinion fosuser is a pain in my butt! It is "OK" when I have no
camera attached, meaning that the image shift when you go in and out
with the focuser tube assembly is halfway tolerable. With a camera in
the eyepiece, forget it! The image shifts out of the FOV half the time!
Not to mention, just with the laser collimator in the eyepeice, just by
advancing the focuser in and out, the shift takes the scope out of

Is this just typical and I am not patient? Or is there a way out!!!???

Thanks for your time,
Mike here: There are circular focus assemblies. I believe JMI has a model for some of the LXD55/75 telescopes. Check their web site (http://www.jimsmobile.com/).
Subject:	LXD55 Sun Tracking
Sent:	Wednesday, March 1, 2006 13:48:56
From:	Christopher Catinella (chris@catinella.com)
I have been searching the internet for a way to track the sun with my
LXD55 Autostar system with the 6" f/5 Model SN-6 scope. I have all the
appropriate filters but when I position the device on the sun, the
tracker moves away automatically. I think it is a safety so Meade
doesn't get into legal trouble. I see your site has a lot of information
regarding tracking the sun but I was wondering if there is a way to
trick the system into looking where I want it to go regardless of the

I talked to the people at Meade and they can't help me due to legal
issues. This leads me to believe there is a way around it, but they will
not tell me. Do you know of a way I can track the sun?
Mike here: There are two ways to go. Do a "fake alignment", where you assume the alignment stars are centered. Of course, the better your HOME position the better the alignment will be. You could also sleep or park the telescope from the previous night's alignment. Once you have an alignment you can do one of two things to "track" the Sun. You can either just slew manually to the Sun and assume that tracking will be accurate enough for your observing session (which it typically is since the Sun doesn't move that much in a short period of time). Alternatively you can add the Sun as an object; see the article "Adding the Sun" on the Autostar Info page on my ETX and LXD Sites.

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