Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

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Altocumulus
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Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:48 am

Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#1

Post by Altocumulus »

Does anyone get a good or even very good polar alignment on a skywatcher mount.

I have two neq6-r pros being set up. I don't really need accurate as I concentrate on Solar.

But last night I was following the excellent polar align on Sharpcap - edging very slowly towards the target but never really getting there.

The older mount managed a Good, but Fair was the best I could get on a newer one. Just tightening shifted the alignment. I was turning both bolts opposingly to minimise final tighten, but it's still tricky.

It seems the bolts are a little too coarse in the bite for much better, or is there a trick?

I note on youtuber uses a hinge under the N leg for an az twitch!

(I'm at 57.36 N, but both Az on the dials show over 60!)
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admin
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#2

Post by admin »

Hi,

yes, it's a big problem particularly with older Skywatcher mounts that the adjustment mechanism is pretty rubbish. It's worst with alignment techniques where you have to adjust the two directions separately, since adjusting altitude can throw the azimuth off and vice-versa :(

You can buy replacement bolts for the Skywatcher adjustments (the stock ones tend to bend), but even that doesn't cure it - the metal they push against is too soft and they can dig into it...

There have been at least two kits of replacement parts to try to fix this on the EQ6 - search 'EQ6 Wedge' and 'EQ6 rail kit'. I'm not sure if either are still produced, and have no personal experience of them. If you are on a tripod it is hard because the on-mount adjustments are all you have... Mine is pier mounted, so I tend to use the 3 mounting bolts that connect the pier plate to the pier as fine adjustments.

cheers,

Robin
Altocumulus
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#3

Post by Altocumulus »

Aye Robin - mind the new mount is only 4 months old - only now just starting to set up in the still to be completed obsy. Good job there's Sharpcap to help out with sync and adjust.

:mrgreen:

Perhaps I should get another couple JTD dual rig alignment saddles - I have one to help align 2 scopes, maybe they could be used to correct the mounts! Mind - bit pricey.....
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#4

Post by admin »

Ah, so the new models aren't really improved much then :(

Here's the setup I have in the observatory with two plates that allows for adjustment of the mount using the large bolts between the plates (when installed, the lower section is attached to the pier).
SAM_1801 (Medium).JPG
SAM_1801 (Medium).JPG (204.75 KiB) Viewed 1806 times
cheers,

Robin
Altocumulus
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#5

Post by Altocumulus »

Nifty!

If only there was a way to do something similar when using a tripod. Metalworking is beyond me, though. Will have to live with it..

Cheers Robin.
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#6

Post by admin »

Hi,

yep, metalworking is too much for me too, but there used to be a guy on one of the other UK forums who had a fabrication business and made those sort of mount plates as a sideline.

cheers,

Robin
Fir Chlis
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#7

Post by Fir Chlis »

For what it’s worth, I can always get a Good polar align (less than 1min total error) on my Skywatcher HEQ5Pro (4 years old) using the stock adjusters. And on occasions, I get Excellent. For me it’s just a case of getting used to making tiny adjustments, alternating between az and alt, but usually finishing with the az.

The Alt adjustment is the trickiest, I will normally overshoot a bit on the rear (short) adjuster to raise the scope, and do the final adjustment with the front (long) adjuster, as that is easier to adjust in small increments to lower the scope to its final position.

I’m doing unguided EAA so really accurate adjustment probably isn’t necessary.


Geoff
Fir Chlis - The Nimble Men (Northern Lights) - Scottish Gaelic
Altocumulus
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Re: Skywatcher Alt Az bolts

#8

Post by Altocumulus »

Thanks Geoff - I'm 'only' doing Solar so, again, it's not terribly important that it's accurate - but it's still a somewhat crude method.

I left it late this time, having completed a new obsy before early evenings were still suitable to grab Polaris - and I've had to use the Sun itself. I'm close but I still get a slight drift that needs correcting incrementally. (Though SharpCap's feature tracking helps!)

Geoff
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