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Polar Align Methods for HEQ5

schmaks
20 Mar, 2020 18:14
Hi there,

Is anyone out there working with the HEQ5 and able to let me know how they are getting best results with polar alignment (and what apps/software) they are using alongside?

Thanks!
benklerk
20 Mar, 2020 21:24
I use the drift method using PHD2. As I cannot see the pole, drift method is really the only way for me.
I use my sky watcher 80mm as a guide scope to do the drift method.
mwpaul73
20 Mar, 2020 22:08
Last night I used the PA scope on my HEQ5. Got it as good as I could without obsessing over it. I used the app PS Align. With guiding I could get 600s exposures. If you are not guiding you might need better PA than when you can get with the scope on your HEQ5.
carastro
20 Mar, 2020 22:21
I used to do it manually just looking up the polarscope, until I fractured my knee, so kneeling was no longer an option.  So I bought myself Polarfinder, and it really makes the job so much easier and more accurate.  I think you can do it without kneeling using Sharpcap as well.

Carole
schmaks
20 Mar, 2020 22:23
mwpaul73
Last night I used the PA scope on my HEQ5. Got it as good as I could without obsessing over it. I used the app PS Align. With guiding I could get 600s exposures. If you are not guiding you might need better PA than when you can get with the scope on your HEQ5.

Good to know! I won't have my guiding setup for a little bit longer so I'll be starting without guided then moving to it shortly.
schmaks
20 Mar, 2020 22:23
Ben S Klerk
I use the drift method using PHD2. As I cannot see the pole, drift method is really the only way for me.I use my sky watcher 80mm as a guide scope to do the drift method.

I am unfamiliar with the method—where might I learn more about this for when I don't have sight of the pole?
schmaks
20 Mar, 2020 22:27
Carastro
I used to do it manually just looking up the polarscope, until I fractured my knee, so kneeling was no longer an option.  So I bought myself Polarfinder, and it really makes the job so much easier and more accurate.  I think you can do it without kneeling using Sharpcap as well.Carole
Thanks!
Benni12345
21 Mar, 2020 04:29
i use the polemaster camera. it has an adapter that fits to the h-eq5. works very precisely.

I never would align it manually… with the polemaster it can go without guiding for 120 seconds at 2000mm focal length but that depends on the age of the gears and probably the random chance if they are precise enough. i had my mount tuned and replaced tsome of the screws and bearings…
schmaks
21 Mar, 2020 05:41
Benni12345
i use the polemaster camera. it has an adapter that fits to the h-eq5. works very precisely.I never would align it manually… with the polemaster it can go without guiding for 120 seconds at 2000mm focal length but that depends on the age of the gears and probably the random chance if they are precise enough. i had my mount tuned and replaced tsome of the screws and bearings…

Can you share a link to the pole master camera you speak of?
schmaks
02 Apr, 2020 19:17
Hi everyone!

I am starting to get the polar alignment but am still missing some pieces that I can't seem to clarify with tutorials online.

Can anyone familiar with the HEQ5 or similar mounts tell me about setting the Polaris Transit on the date dial? What point in the alignment process do I do this. Also—is there a phone app that shows me the date I need to set it for based on my location?

Or—since I am using the Polar Scope Align Pro app—is this already compensated for and maybe I don't need to set the polar transit date/time on the dial and simply leave it at zero?

Once I have this confirmed, I think I'll be able to get some good alignment.

Thanks!
Edited 02 Apr, 2020 20:23
carastro
02 Apr, 2020 22:26
I don't set any dial on mine even before I used Polemaster.

The main thing is you need to point the mount at the polar axis, everything rotates around it includes Polaris.  Ignore all the dials.
Just find out where Polaris is around the True pole and get Polaris on the circle in the same place.

Think of the circle as a clock face, but don;t read the dial as such.

I then use Polarfinder which when installed on your computer needs to be set to your location and time.  It will then tell you where polaris will be at any given time:

I think Ioptron do an app you can down load, it will be something like this, unfortunately this picture I found doesn't show Polaris, but hopefully you'll get the idea.


Wherever Polaris appears on your App, put it in the same place in your polarscope by adjusting the Alt/Az and latitude bolts.

Carole
Edited 02 Apr, 2020 22:28
schmaks
02 Apr, 2020 22:36
Sounds good!

Thanks!
Rich-sky
02 Apr, 2020 23:26
I use polemaster, no need for non-sense!

With polemaster, you connect to the camera, you select Polaris, then you select one of the nearby star to Polaris, you turn declination twice -selecting the same star. A rotation circle of the north pole is created, and then you are asked to align Polaris with the center of rotation using the RA mount 'bolts'. You then have a 1 to 5' north pole precision. You can further obtain precision by doing a drift align in PHD2.
The entire routine takes less than 5 minutes, on your fist night, it may take up to 30 minutes.

Again, you are at a cross-road. Polemaster camera is attached for me on my Losmandy bar below the main scope.

(ps. if you decide on using polemaster, read my post on USB power management, to resolve an issue with WIN10. This issue, is a WIN10 problem and not a polemaster issue.  post in the celestron rasa group)

Stay safe, keep looking up!
Edited 02 Apr, 2020 23:38
schmaks
03 Apr, 2020 00:04
Rich Sky
I use polemaster, no need for non-sense!With polemaster, you connect to the camera, you select Polaris, then you select one of the nearby star to Polaris, you turn declination twice -selecting the same star. A rotation circle of the north pole is created, and then you are asked to align Polaris with the center of rotation using the RA mount 'bolts'. You then have a 1 to 5' north pole precision. You can further obtain precision by doing a drift align in PHD2.
The entire routine takes less than 5 minutes, on your fist night, it may take up to 30 minutes.

Again, you are at a cross-road. Polemaster camera is attached for me on my Losmandy bar below the main scope.

(ps. if you decide on using polemaster, read my post on USB power management, to resolve an issue with WIN10. This issue, is a WIN10 problem and not a polemaster issue.  post in the celestron rasa group)

Stay safe, keep looking up!

Thanks Rich!

my next purchase will be my scope… then the guide system… then polemaster will be up to the plate!
dkamen
03 Apr, 2020 12:11
schmaks
Hi everyone!I am starting to get the polar alignment but am still missing some pieces that I can't seem to clarify with tutorials online.

Can anyone familiar with the HEQ5 or similar mounts tell me about setting the Polaris Transit on the date dial? What point in the alignment process do I do this. Also—is there a phone app that shows me the date I need to set it for based on my location?

Or—since I am using the Polar Scope Align Pro app—is this already compensated for and maybe I don't need to set the polar transit date/time on the dial and simply leave it at zero?

Once I have this confirmed, I think I'll be able to get some good alignment.

Thanks!

Hi,

I have a Star Adventurer and a EQ35M. The polar scope is practically identical. For both, I use the SAM Mini Console App which tells you where you must place Polaris and I am very satisfied with the result. Just make sure to rotate the RA axis so that 12 o'clock is at the top of your field of view and 6 o'clock at the bottom.

I doubt the HEQ5 would be much different.

Now, bear in mind that polar scope alignment is inherently limited in its accuracy. First, your polar cope will almost certainly not be 100% perfectly collimated: if you have a start at 12 o'clock and rotate the scope 180 degrees, most likely the star will NOT end up precisely at 6 o' clock. Second, it is very difficult to tell whether you have the star exactly at 16.15 as the app or your chart tells you you should or e.g. it is actually at 16.16. But unless you have a 500mm tube or expose for ten minutes or something, these things barely matter, especially if you autoguide: polar alignment is fast, easy and good enough for most of us.

If you want very high accuracy (also: if you don't have good line of sight to Polaris, if you live in a region where Polaris is too high up the sky resulting in a great deal of physical inconvenience looking through the polar scope or if you are not expecting to be moving your mount much), you should use a drift method.

Cheers,
D.
Edited 03 Apr, 2020 12:12
astropical
03 Apr, 2020 12:16
Hi schmaks,
For reference, here is a screen snap of my home-brewed polar finder showing Polaris' position.
In case you have no app at hand, please search the web for the "Kochab Clock Method".
Haven't tried it yet, but I am planning to use SharpCap for polar alignments, asap.
Best luck!
Robert

vgutsmann
03 Apr, 2020 15:10
Hi schmaks, I am using SharpCap's polar align tool for this. You need a guide scope with a focal length of app 200mm and free view on Polaris for this. It is very fast and very reliable. Unfortunately, SharpCap is not for free but it has saved me a lot of time in the last years. It is worth trying out.

Bye Volker
cuivenion
03 Apr, 2020 21:14
Hi, I've also been using the Sharpcap polar align routine. I just get Polaris in the polar scope FOV and then use Sharpcap with a guide camera and finder guider after that. It works very well.
schmaks
03 Apr, 2020 21:22
Thanks! I'll check into it.
schmaks
yesterday, 16:32
Hi again,

can you tell me what the process is like after completing polar alignment with the HEQ5?

How do I then do a single star alignment and then how do I find my target and get everything moving so I can then start shooting?
 
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