Australia Trip Day 7

Posted: February 29, 2012 in News
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Tonight was partly cloudy so I wasnt able to view much at all. It didnt matter really as today was full of work. I installed the new electronics (seen above) and ran the cables. Running cables seems easy enough, except I had to take apart the mount to snake the cables through. RC Optical has a rather large power brick for the new electronics package and the cable wasn’t long enough to fit through the mount. I got creative with some Velcro and mounted the power brick itself to the mount and then did some cable management. I tested the scope to the extremes to ensure it would not pull on the cable. Also, since the cable did not go through the mount, I had to get inventive as to where to run the other end of the cable. That meant zip tying it to the counter weight rod. I was able to snake the USB cable through the mount, for what little that is worth.

Today we also cleaned the mirrors. It took over an hour, but it was well worth the work. Unlike glass, you cannot rub on the mirror. Rubbing can cause small scratches and that would less the quality of the image. Also, I installed all the software upgrades for the new electronics. That was a bit of work as we had to upgrade to ASCOM 6 and then I had to install plugins for The Sky 6 and CCDSoft. Quite a bit of work. In the end I was able to test the system and all is well. I need to do a bit of modification to the automated control software (adding in the primary mirror cover, seen below, and changing any bad drivers.

Below are some pictures I took last night (after I had made the blog post). They are (in order) M65, M66, and some shots of the sky from my SLR.




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