Last updated: 30 January 2008

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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:	LXD 75 Creep after Beep
Sent:	Monday, January 28, 2008 11:08:30
From:	Dan Dolaptchieff (starwindmarine@gmail.com)
Hope your move went well. You have a open invitation to visit us here on
the big island any time. We will take you up to our visitor center at
9200 ft and show you some cool southern objects thru my friends 24"
obsession if you like.

I have a couple of problems that you might be able help with. First is a
creep after beep on the dec motor ,to the west after star align. I got
the LXD 75 in a box from my friend. he had only used it twice and
ordered all the update kits. Warp drive and hyper tuning. I did that and
reassembled it. It will also not let me update the Autostar 497
controller. I have the Meade serial cable and keyspan adapter. It says
no communication. The keyspan cks good on all ports.I have read most of
your updates etc on your site( Great site).

Hopefully you can help?? I told my club about your losses and we will
keep an eye out for your equipt.
Mike here: I have been up to Mauna Kea; great place! We were even allowed inside some of the observatories. That was in 2000. Previously my last visit to Hawaii was while in the Air Force; spent 3 months at Barbers Point Naval Air Station with lots of flying over and around the Big Island. That was a wonderful time! As to creep after beep, have you done a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES on the AutoStar? That usually solves such problems. As to the serial port conflict (assuming you are using Windows), it could be fax software or something else tying up the serial port. Check for that. Alternatively, try using the StarGPS software available at www.stargps.ca; it is more forgiving on the serial stuff.


Thanks for the advice.I have done the train and calibrate. No change. I
took the motors apart and painted the encoders yesterday.and recentered
the pick up to the wheel. Put it all back together and it wants to pick
stars below the horizon now?? I did a reset and doublecked the lat/long
.-10 utc time alt az ratio etc and no luck. It even said Mizar was below
horizon.Im confused. Hope to resolve the issues before the next dark
time.Come see us again when you can.

 Thanks much for your help.
Mike here: I doubt that your surgery caused the AutoStar confusion. That sounds more like a location problem. Check that you have entered your latitude properly.
Subject:	Stolen Equipment
Sent:	Tuesday, January 22, 2008 06:48:59
From:	Katodog (katodwg1@sbcglobal.net)
I just got on your site and saw that you had some equipment stolen.
Sorry to hear that. I hope you can get it all back.

I just wanted to drop you a line and see if you knew that on the Cloudy
Nights forum, they have a spot in their Shop & Swap for listing stolen
equipment. I thought maybe you could list your stuff there, since it
would hit a ton of people. Maybe someone has come across your stuff, and
can help you out.

Cloudy Nights

Subject:	LXD 75 RA slewing
Sent:	Sunday, January 20, 2008 19:45:04
From:	Dan Dolaptchieff (starwindmarine@gmail.com)
I just got done with a full hypetune and pulley replacement on a LXD75
that I got from a friend. It worked fine before it was torn down and
given to me in a box. When i goto align set up and pick the first star
it wants to slowly slew to the west after slewing to the first star. It
did it right away when I first tried to align without picking a star.
After I reset it and trained it it doesnt do a slew until the first star
is picked. Any Ideas?

Thanks for any input you might have

Also I have let my club know about your equipt loss and we will keep an
eye out.
Mike here: Have you done a CALIBRATE MOTOR on the AutoStar?
Subject:	Returning an ETX-80BB for a LXD-75
Sent:	Friday, January 18, 2008 21:50:17
From:	Jerry Hailey (jerry3672@lexcominc.net)
My two week old ETX-80 has a problem. While moving to the first
alignment star I heard a "pop" sound and then the autostar gave me a
motor fault. Then I just shut down a started over. The time and date was
set back to 2003 just like I had never set the scope up. The next thing
I noticed was the Alt motor was jumping from position to position
instead of a smooth motion. When it got to the first alignment star it
was off at least 10 degrees. The same error with the second star. All of
the goto stars were way off. I had never had this trouble before. the
alignment stars were usually in sight of the 26mm eyepiece. So have sent
the ETX-80BB back to Opticsplanet. I have asked them to ship me an
ETX-125, but they are out of stock and won't have any for a while. So I
am looking at the LXD-75 with a 6in Newtonian. I think the GEM should be
better for the astrophotography that I want to do, but I'm not sure
about the GEM working well at tracking satellites. I was able to track
satellites with no problem with the ETX-80 in alt-Az. I did get a nice
photo of the moon using a 40mm eyepiece and a tripod holding my Sony H7
digital camera. I have a lot to learn about how to use the camera for
astrophotography and have learned a lot from reading your web site.

I have looked over and searched your web site for some feedback on a GEM
tracking satellites and have found none so far. My primary goal with my
next scope will be astrophotography, and secondary tracking satellites.
Will I be better off with an ETX-125 or a LXD75 with a 6 inch Newtonian?

Mike here: The GEM will track satellites fine. The only thing you might have to "worry" about is the meridian crossing.
Subject:	Security
Sent:	January 16, 2008 15:34:29 PST
From:	lwelke23-mail@yahoo.com
I became a visitor to your website by a friends recommendation who owns
a Meade 10" SCT

And I now own a Meade 8" LX90 which I love even though I had to relearn
how to use it after having owned a 11" Celestron GPS sct and a Celestron
8" Goto sct both of which I have sold.

I still own a 80mm Celestron SLT goto scope and a 5" Celestron with a
clock drive that isn't working very well.

To me the Meade line of 'scopes seem to have fewer problems and I may
invest in another Meade scope in the near future.

I was sorry to hear about the thefts you incurred and was wondering if
by the fact that we as Meade users talking about our 'scopes expose
ourselves to the jerks you talked about and put ourselves at risk in
losing our astro stuff to these jerks trying to support their drug or
other bad habits and what can we do about this?

Cool Lou
Mike here: Who knows what prompted the theft or timing. I just hope it ends up in a good home.
Subject:	quick meade parts question
Sent:	Friday, January 11, 2008 08:03:02
From:	Ken Neusaenger (ken800@gmail.com)
Other than meade, is there anywhere that stocks meade parts --
specifically worm and bevel gears for the LXD55 mount?


Mike here: You can try Scopestuff.com and Telescope Warehouse.


Thanks, Mike.  I appreciate the response.  I just realized that
scopestuff is about 20 minutes from my house... I'm going to call them
up and see if they have any "parts".

Thanks Much!


Subject:	Re: LXD75 mount troubles
Sent:	Wednesday, January 9, 2008 00:38:09
From:	Paul Littlecoyote (ngc_7293@yahoo.com)
Well, I resolved the mount problem with a short trip down to OPT and a
new mount head. Mike was helpful and I got my friend to buy a nice LXD75
SN 8. It is one hell of a scope allright! I have the 6in refractor and
the 8" SCT and he has the Schmidt Newtonian. We can trade off scopes and
even use other otas easily. We're ready to take some kiler photos now!

Hear you just moved to Tuscon area. What's it like? How do you like it?

Mike here: Haven't had much time yet for observing and with the telescope theft, my capabilities are currently rather limited. But the skies are nice and dark here on the outskirts of Tucson.
Subject:	equipment and move to OO
Sent:	Wednesday, January 9, 2008 05:04:29
From:	Dieter.Wolf@DNSint.com (Dieter.Wolf@DNSint.com)
I just read about your bad luck / stolen equipment.
I really do dislike how people are, but that's our world and we have to
live in it.
Please don't get too angry there are much more important things in life
that can't be paid with money.

Nevertheless I wish you and Laurraine a healthy and lucky new year and a
good time together (that's one of the things you can't buy for money) in
your new OO home.

One of your many friends around the world...
Dieter Wolf (Munich, Germany)
Mike here: Thanks. I didn't get angry; just disappointed. I hope the equipment ultimately ends up in a good home. I just hope that the jerks don't benefit from it in the long run.
Subject:	LXD75 on EQ5 mount
Sent:	Sunday, January 6, 2008 04:41:19
From:	Francisco Snchez (alkes@wanadoo.es)
Excuse my english, I'm spanish. I got two engines of a LXD75 and he
coupled to the EQ5 being axes endless toothed crowns of some 35 teeth
and 29.6 mm in diameter and which are of the original theory that brings
the mount Meade. The fact is that the engines are coupled well, but I
had to supplement a bit where the base is screwed to the frame (about 2
mm) in the past because tighten opened a few mm. It took a couple of
nights testing and the system does not work, has nothing precision and
objects tend to stay on the edge of the finder and in the best of cases
to 1 / 3 away from the center of it. I have reviewed all the parameters,
day, hour, daylight, latitude, longitude, GMT etc, I did the calibration
and training, etc., that is to say, everything. I have pains to put the
best possible mount in season, but nothing, there is no way. Any idea?.
Can ratios of the engines, because I understand that the axes of Meade
and GP Vixen measured 5 mm and the EQ5 6 mm, does this affect the
ratios?. Any idea?.
Mike here: I'm not certain I understand correctly but if you are using LXD75 motors on an EQ5 mount and still using the AutoStar, then doing a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES should help set parameters correctly.


Spur gears mechanism (coupled to motors axis) are manufactured by Meade
and these ones located in EQ5 mount axis are these:
pdf   code: DS08-35B. When I write finder, it means main finder located
on the optic tube and so stars so objects to find, are far to the
center. Best precision I have got is this objects appears to a distance
2/3 far to central cross.
Mike here: Are you using an AutoStar and if so, have you done a CALIBRATE MOTOR and TRAIN DRIVES?


Yes I am using Autostar 43E firmware, and I have done CALIBRATE MOTORS
Mike here: OK. Check the articles "Setting Percentages For Better Tracking" and "Calibration, Training, Percentages" on the Helpful Information: AutoStar Info page. Perhaps something there will help you.


Do you know where are the spurs gears 35 tooth placed, in the mount axis
or on the engine Meade?
Mike here: See if the articles "Fixing a Slipped RA Gear" and "LXD55/75 Gear Box Maintenance" on my LXD55/75 Site help answer your question.


Thank you for your help, the problem was that it had installed four
spurs gears of 35 teeth. I understand that I only have to change to the
ratio of the engine to 2.399999 Did ok?

Subject:	lxd55
Sent:	Wednesday, January 2, 2008 22:28:47
From:	Ken Neusaenger (ken800@gmail.com)
Thanks again for answering my questions on the yahoo forum.  I just have
a quick question... I'm still seriously considering the LXD55 SC8
telescope that I mentioned in yahoo groups.  It is a 2002 model that
appears to have been used maybe a handful of times.  Super clean -- not
a scratch.  the only optional accessories is the mead eyepiece set with
the aluminum case that they offered with the purchase of a scope.  He
wants 900 for the setup.  I offered him 800 but he's standing firm.  Is
it worth the money?  I suspect you don't like to give that kind of
advice given your employment with OPT but would appreciate your input

As always, I love your site and keep up the good work.  It got me up and
running FAST on my ETX125 with very solid GOTO performance.

Take care,

Mike here: Given the original cost and assuming everything is in excellent condition and that everything is included (AutoStar, finderscope, star diagonal, battery pack, etc), then that price is not is bad.


Thanks so much for the input... I got him to agree to $850 so I grabbed
it.  What do you think of the belt drive mod for the lxd55 mount?


Mike here: From reports I've seen it appears to be well received.
Subject:	Thank you for you advice on LXD75 mounts
Sent:	Wednesday, January 2, 2008 14:11:14
From:	Ed Sunder (edsunder@threehd.com)
I just wanted to drop a quick note to tell you how important your LXD75
site has been to me over the past couple weeks. I purchased my SN8 LXD75
over eBay with a bit of trepidation and when it arrived, the motors
didn't move the mount  I found the solution on your site. Then I needed
to know about resetting the handbox after I thought I'd fried it. Your
site had the solution. Then I had issues connecting from Autostar
Envisage for Drizzling. Again, your site came to the rescue. Ultimately
you've helped me figure out that I actually got a great deal on a scope
that's now working perfectly.

I've linked to you on my astrophotography blog several times now, but
wanted to let you know how much I appreciated the help you provided me
through your site.

On another note, I was really sorry to hear that your equipment was
stolen. I hope you've got some other equipment to use and that insurance
will cover your loss. That kind of thing just makes everyone mad.

Thanks again,
Ed Sunder

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