Last updated: 24 October 2006
This page is for user comments and information of a general nature or items applicable to all LXD55 and LXD75 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: Questions Sent: Sunday, October 22, 2006 13:53:28 From: Steve (firstname.lastname@example.org) I wanted to ask you a couple of questions that might not be appropriate for the LXD55 site so did not include them in the earlier message, but if you want to put then on site then ok. One of the reasons I have done with more with astronomy of late has to do with health. I have had a couple of bouts with skin cancer so am devoting more time to astronomy and less time to my outdoor daytime hobbies. I will probably have to have cataract surgery in a couple of years and wonder if you know of any experiences doing astronomy after such surgery? Also, when I was buying the DSI II, the guy at the telescope store mentioned that the Meade 16 inch Lightbridge Dob might be out before Christmas. He also said that they are planning on producing only about 40 of them. Is there anything you can tell me about the "trutheness" of these rumors? Do you have an plans for a website devoted to the Lightbridge?Mike here: I'm sure there are many amateur astronomers who have had this surgery but I don't recall seeing visual reports from them. As to the Lightbridge, haven't heard that rumor and since I don't have a Lightbridge, I have no plans to do a Site for them. By the way, I forgot to mention that your message was originally DELETED UNREAD as SPAM due to the ambiguous subject line. To avoid this happening in the future, please read the Email Etiquette on the LXD Site. Thanks for understanding.
Sorry about that. I will reread it. I am going to be asking around about the surgery and will pass along to you what I find out
Subject: Question on EC for ETX and LXD75 Sent: Friday, October 20, 2006 23:14:15 From: bensi@@inwind..it (email@example.com) You excuse me for my English bad one. The EC is a single type that adapted to the LXD75 or the ETX? Or exist two various models of EC? It's sufficient to remove the screw on the back of EC (electronic controller) for modifying the configurations? I have two ETX that use with EC, if I modify the lives I can use them with new LXD75 that I have bought yesterday?. Thanks Marco Bensi Latina 41 28' 37'' N - 12 53' 48'' E Meade LXD75 N6" - ETX 90 e 70 - Autostar LPI e DSI ******************************************** * http://groups.yahoo.com/group/etx_italy/ * ******************************************** Le mie immagini sono su: http://astroimmagini.uai.it http://quasar.teoth.it/gallery/Mike here: I would have thought the EC handcontroller was the same for the ETX and LXD models. But you should set the default condition to be Polar.
Thanks Mike!! Yes It's Ok ! It's the same EC for ETX and LXD. I Try in this days and all Ok !! Bye Marco Bensi - Latina - Italy
Subject: Re: LXD75 Mount for ETX-125????? Sent: Sunday, October 8, 2006 17:04:22 From: John Dooley (firstname.lastname@example.org) Was in OPT on Friday and had a great conversation with Chris about the specials going on. One thing led to another and I walked out of there with a Meade - SN-6 AT - 6" f/5 Schmidt-Newtonian on LXD75 AT Mount with UHTC. Received the no-tax deal along with the Meade eye piece kit and the DSI pro- all for under $1200. Chris had me pretty convinced that the overall size and weight of the SN-6 would fit what I descibed to him as my needs (wants) for the present time. I could not get him to throw a Takahashi - FS-102II 102mm f/8 Fluorite APO Refractor or a Losmandy - GM-8 Mount with Gemini GoTo System into my truck while he was at it though, for some reason, huh............ I'll let you know about my observations with the new system as I become accustomed. Regards, John Dooley Victorville, CA PS: I have no business interest in OPT
Subject: RE: problems with AutoStar training Sent: Thursday, October 5, 2006 12:39:20 From: Edward Essex (email@example.com) Thanks Mike, It worked fine after I changed the site location from east to west It picked stars that where in the viewfinder and the go to worked great after that. Thanks for your help! Now if I can just find a good weather witch to get ride of these clouds. Regards Edward Essex
Subject: problems with AutoStar training Sent: Monday, October 2, 2006 16:25:03 From: Edward Essex (firstname.lastname@example.org) First great site! I have recently purchased a used LXD75 N-6EC telescope and a 497 AutoStar with revision 42e. In menu under setup, telescope there is a selection "LXD55/75 Adjust". You are asked to pick a terrestrial object and centre it. Once I hit enter the dec motor slews the scope 180 degrees and then the RA motor swings the scope till the dec motor hits the ra motor. It seems to do this no matter which object I chose. I have checked the telescope model in the 497 and it is LXD55/75 6 new. I cannot find any mention of this menu item in the manual or on Meade's website. Questions 1. What I am doing wrong? 2. Is this the right alignment or should I be using "train drive"? Regards Edward EssexMike here: The "Adjust" option is not normally needed for most usage, unless you know the mount's RA axis does not match the telescope optical axis. So, don't start with that option until you know you need it (described in Appendix B, I believe). I suggest putting the AutoStar back in its "factory default" condition by doing a RESET on the AutoStar menu. Then do a CALIBRATE MOTOR. Follow that with a TRAIN DRIVES; don't forget to do both axes. Once you've done those steps, then you can do the Easy Alignment and see how things go.
Subject: Polar Alignment Article Answer(s) 4 Ken Archer Sent: Saturday, September 30, 2006 8:58:09 PM From: M. J. The Madjordainain (email@example.com) I'll try to keep the explanation of why the Modified Kochab's is done the way it is as short as possible in regards to Ken Archer's inquiry. The straight line between Kochab and Polaris is maintained all the way through the polar scope the CW bar is simply a way to establish that line quickly and easily. The polar finder NCP offset for Polaris is setup on the long cross hair of the polar scope with the reversed presented image in mind. In other words the polar scope is setup to have the long cross hair pointed in the direction away from Beta UMi in the actual view through the polar scope if it were a wide enough FOV. This means the NCP offset marker circle is in the correct point for Polaris to be aligned to with the Atl/Az adjustments. What gets confusing is you visually draw the straight line using the CW bar & long X-hair line and that's it; the CW bar/long X-hair line is only basically a ruler you use to draw that imaginary line to do your alignment on. The bottom line is align the polar scope in the mount R.A. Axis as stated, then do it the way it is diagramed in the article you will be about as accurately pointed as the polar scope can get you. If you are going to go for long exposures much over the 3 minute mark you will need to do your drift alignments, when my polar scope is well aligned in the mount I can go up to about 2.5 - 3 minutes unguided - no drift alignment this way. Here are the RGB frame stacks from one of my recent outings using the Modified Clay's Kochab's Clock method alone with no drift alignments and unguided. All three channels are 20 frame stacks otherwise totally unprocessed for these examples, taken using the LXD75 GEM with an Orion SVP 8" Newtonian F5 OTA and Meade DSI Pro-1. As stated on the .jpgs; Red = 90 seconds per frame ; Green = 155 seconds per frame; and Blue = 172 seconds per frame.
Clear skies! The Mad One Mark Jordan Greenfield, IN
Thought I'd send you the finished image from those Caldwell-12 Spiral Galaxy RGB frames to illustrate the tracking of the Modified Kochab's Clock alignment method I sent yesterday. This image is the total LRGB color combination after complete image processing using the Autostar Image Processing software included with the Autostar software and the freeware/donation-ware application Iris 5.32 by Christian Buil. The stacking was done in the ASIP. The final processing of the separate color frames and combining of the LRGB was done in Iris 5.32. A separate Windows application was used to ad the text. A couple of quick foot notes/side notes: You may have noticed over the last few months notes and images I have sent in I have gone through a variety of telescope set-ups. This is not due to any dissatisfaction with any one of the different Mount/OTA combinations, but rather looking for the performance levels of the different low budget combinations which will work best. I have found through this process what I would consider to be the best possible imaging set-ups for the LXD75 mount. TOTAL WEIGHT of all accessories; mounting hardware; and OTA loads: At or below 15 - 20 Lbs exceptional stability and performance in this mount price class: At or below 20 - 28 Lbs Very good and mostly acceptable stability and performance: AT the 30 lbs mark - performance OK some stability issues, frequent maintenance needed: Going above the 30 Lbs mark to 35 lbs; simply to heavy for reliable, stable and constant performance on a nightly basis. I don't mean to hurt anyone's feelings using the LXD75/55 with set-ups exceeding the 30 lbs. range, this is what I have found out on my own by doing some swappin & experimenting with different set-ups on the LXD75. In the 30 -35 Lbs setup I did have some good imaging performance under the most ideal conditions, but I had more "less than ideal" performances than good ones. I am really happy with my LXD75 with the 20 - 28 lbs (including all of the 'stuff') and 15 - 20 lbs OTA (including all of the 'stuff') set-ups I have for it right now. For what I have invested it would really be a tough value to beat. I'd have to spend twice as much to begin to see any improvements! Here's a thought for you: A Meade LXD75 with one of the new Meade Series 5000 127mm APO Refractors Meade is trying to get to market. A nice higher class 16 - 17 Lbs OTA, but a lot of OTA for your economical LXD75 GEM! Why put an OTA in that class on the LXD75? Because IMHO it would be a good match and really a hard to beat setup for the $$$$! Clear Skies The Mad One Mark Jordan Greenfield, IN
Subject: re: LX90 groups Sent: Thursday, September 28, 2006 20:19:50 From: richard seymour (firstname.lastname@example.org) Mike wrote: > There is "Jan's Meade LX90 Pages": http://m1.aol.com/kewtasheck/lx90.html Unfortunately, Janet Miller has moved on, and that site exists long after her AOL account was closed. Other interested LX90 users have "mirrored" the site at http://jan.eaglecreekobservatory.org For current discussions of LX90's, there's the Yahoo LX90 group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/lx90 and 90% of Mike's "Mighty ETX" is directly applicable to the LX90. http://www.weasner.com/etx have fun --dick
Subject: LX90 groups Sent: Friday, September 29, 2006 03:39:20 From: Niall J. Saunders (email@example.com) Whilst Mike is correct in pointing you to the excellent wealth of information on Jan's pages, she has, sadly, been forced to 'hang up her hat' when it comes to updating the information. Further, the pages have now been 'mirrored' elsewhere on the 'Net - with her permission - just to ensure that the valuable data doesn't 'go missing'. That said, the thriving community on the LX90 Yahoo Group has been the home of a well-balanced discussion for many years now, and boasts regular contributors such as Doc Clay and Dick Seymour, amongst others - all of whom also help make Mike's ETX site the wonder that it is. (Have a look at http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/lx90 ) If you want to be 'truly dedicated' (or should that be 'truly committed' - pun intended!), then think about doing what I did. Start at the beginning and read EVERY message on the LX90 Yahoo group. It has taken me just over seven months to 'catch up' (I only have 315 messages to go before I start re-reading the 'live' messages that were being posted when I started). By the way, I also read every part of both Mike's ETX and LXD sites - there is a HUGE wealth of information on these sites that is NOT limited to just the ETX and LXD range of scopes - remember the Autostar is common to the LX90 as well. Alternatively, keep the pressure on Mr. Weasner - I am still not convinced he has made use of ALL of his spare time. After all, he still manages the occasional trip to Oracle Observatory - when he could be putting together a dedicated LX90 website !!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Enjoy your trip Mike - I have had this last week off and haven't even seen a single star - not even Sol!) Cheers, Niall Saunders Clinterty Observatories Aberdeen, SCOTLANDMike here: Maybe I'll do that when I get a LX90-20"....
Just ask Meade to send you one of their latest 'babies' - for evaluation purposes of course !! (Oh, and by the way, if they DO, please let me know - I'll see you at the Oracle !!!) Clear Skies, Niall
Subject: re: motor fault related to extra weight of sbig camera? Sent: Thursday, September 28, 2006 20:15:56 From: richard seymour (firstname.lastname@example.org) Things you might try: (a) select Setup/Telescope/Quiet Slew /ON [enter] ...that limits the maximum slew speed to 3 degrees per second, and might allow the motors to drive the additional weight without MUF'fing. (b) Setup/Telescope/Calibrate Motors (enter)... to let the Autostar -finely- tune the encoder illumination. It may already be doing this automatically for you after the MUF, but if it's not, it can't hurt. (this will only take 5 seconds, but will mess up the alignment... so do it -before- aligning.) (c) You might check your balance in different orientations (or note if the MUF's happen in -particular- areas of the sky). When one happens, -stop- and unclamp each axis separately. See if there's an out-of-balance condition arising because a "heavy" end is swung out on an extended moment arm. Many scopes require "3D" balancing systems to handle this (although the GEM mount avoids much of this kerfluffle) have fun --dick
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