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Some Ideas

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Posted by Glenn Mitchell on August 28, 2002 04:05:07 UTC

I have an LX200 GPS, not an LX50, but here are some ideas that are generic for GOTO and PUSHTO scopes.

(1) Make sure you level the tripod and then level the OTA.

(2) Get the scope polar aligned. True North is about 45' in the direction of Kochab from Polaris. (With an 8*50 viewfinder, that's 1/3 of the way from the center of the crosshair to the edge of the viewfinder.) That's the spot you have to center in your eyepiece. Make sure you center it with the altitude and azimuth adjusters on your tripod. Don't use the slow motion controls on the Dec and RA axis to center True North. (If your wedge does not have an azimuth adjuster, you have to turn the tripod. Make sure your level the tripod again after you move it.)

(3) Precisely center the alignment stars. Use a lighted reticle or crosshair eyepiece.

(4) Pick alignment stars that are widely separated. Right now, around 10PM, you could use something like Arcturus and Deneb.

(5) How good is your knowledge of the sky? If you misidentify one of the alignment stars, you're sunk.

Don't rely on the readout to tell you if you are aligned. After you sync on the second alignment star, try to go back to the first alignment star. If you're aligned, you should be dead on.


Glenn E. Mitchell II, Ph.D. (aka Mitch)
10" f/10 Meade LX-200 GPS (Big Blue) s/n 01088
Supercharged at ASO by Dr. Clay Sherrod, # 2314-2010
N 30 30' 49.2" / W 084 20' 13.8"

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