INSTRUCTION MANUAL
Meade #1697 Computer Drive System
®
For LXD 650 and LXD 750 Equatorial Mounts
Meade Instruments Corporation
MEADE LIMITED WARRANTY
Every Meade telescope, spotting scope, and telescope accessory is warranted by Meade Instruments Corporation (“Meade”)
to be free of defects in materials and workmanship for a period of ONE YEAR from the date of original purchase in the U.S.A.
and Canada. Meade will repair or replace a product, or part thereof, found by Meade to be defective, provided the defective
part is returned to Meade, freight-prepaid, with proof of purchase. This warranty applies to the original purchaser only and is
non-transferable. Meade products purchased outside North America are not included in this warranty, but are covered under
separate warranties issued by Meade international distributors.
RGA Number Required: Prior to the return of any product or part, a Return Goods Authorization (RGA) number must be
obtained from Meade by writing, or by calling (949) 451-1450. Each returned part or product must include a written statement
detailing the nature of the claimed defect, as well as the owner’s name, address, and phone number.
This warranty is not valid in cases where the product has been abused or mishandled, where unauthorized repairs have been
attempted or performed, or where depreciation of the product is due to normal wear-and-tear. Meade specifically disclaims
special, indirect, or consequential damages or lost profit which may result from a breach of this warranty. Any implied
warranties which can not be disclaimed are hereby limited to a term of one year from the date of original retail purchase.
This warranty gives you specific rights. You may have other rights which vary from state to state.
Meade reserves the right to change product specifications or to discontinue products without notice.
This warranty supersedes all previous Meade product warranties.
-3-
Contents
#1697 Computer Drive System
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Installation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Quick Start . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Basic Telescope Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Basic CDS Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Entering the Latitude and Longitude of the
Observing Site . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Entering the Local Time and Date . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Telescope and CDS Alignment. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Using the #1697 Computer Drive System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
The Mode Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Library Object Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Daytime Slewing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
The CDS Keypad Hand Controller . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
ENTER Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
MODE Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
GO TO Key. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Direction Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
RET Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Speed Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
FOCUS Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
MAP Key. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Object Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
PREV and NEXT Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
The CDS Control Panel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Current (mA x 100) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
N/S . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
On/Off . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Red LED Indicator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Focuser . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Reticle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Keypad . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
R.A. Motor. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Power 12vDC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
RS-232 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
CCD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Aux . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
MODE Functions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
MODE ONE: TELESCOPE/OBJECT LIBRARY . . . . . . 11
TELESCOPE Menu File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
SITE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
ALIGN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
SMART . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Training the SMART Drive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
DEC LEARN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
12/24 HR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
HELP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
REVERSE NS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
REVERSE EW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
BALANCING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
High Precision Pointing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Pointing Accuracy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
Using High Precision Pointing . . . . . . . . . . . 13
SLEW RATE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
® The name ‘Meade’ and the Meade logo are trademarks
registered with the U.S. Patent Office and in principal
countries throughout the world.
© 1998 Meade Instruments Corporation
DEC Backlash Compensation. . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
PIER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
OBJECT LIBRARY Menu File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
OBJECT INFO. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
START FIND . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Coordinate Matching Feature. . . . . . . . . . . . 15
FIELD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
PARAMETERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
TYPE GPDCO . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
BETTER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
HIGHER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
LARGER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
SMALLER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
BRIGHTER . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
FAINTER. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
RADIUS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
MODE TWO: COORDINATES/GOTO. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Coordinates Menu Option . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
GO TO Menu Option . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
MODE THREE: CLOCK/CALENDAR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
MODE FOUR: TIMER/FREQ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
TIMER Option. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
FREQ Option . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
MODE FIVE: KEYPAD OFF/BRIGHTNESS ADJUST. . 17
Optional Accessories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Meade Customer Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Appendix A: Precise Polar Alignment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Appendix B: Alignment Star Library and Star Charts . . . . . . 20
Alignment Stars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
Star Charts (for Northern Hemisphere Observers) . . . . 21
Appendix C: #1697 CDS 64,359-Object Library . . . . . . . . . . 23
Overview: 64,359 Object Library. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Accessing the Object Databases . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Messier (M) Catalog . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Planets and Moon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Star, SAO & GCVS Catalogs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
CNGC, IC, & UGC Catalogs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
The Meade CNGC Catalog . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Star Catalog (listing). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
M Catalog (listing) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
Appendix D: Personal Computer Control of the #1697 CDS . 36
RS-232 Cable . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
CDS Test Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
CDS Command Set . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
Command Set Formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
General Telescope Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
Telescope Motion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Library/Objects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Miscellaneous. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
Keypad Hand Controller Specific . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
CDS Demo Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
Appendix E: Care and Maintenance of the CDS. . . . . . . . . . 50
-4-
#1697 COMPUTER DRIVE SYSTEM:
INTRODUCTION
The Meade #1697 Computer Drive System (CDS) is easily
installed in the Meade LXD 650 and 750 Equatorial Mounts.
With a properly polar aligned mount, (see the instruction manual
which accompanies the telescope), the #1697 Computer Drive
System's advanced electronics permit the location and
observation of the major planets as well as hundreds of deep-sky
objects the very first night of use. Its 64,359-object library
provides enough galaxies, nebulae, star clusters, and other deep
sky objects for a lifetime of observing enjoyment.
Installing the CDS is a straightforward procedure, requiring only
a phillips screwdriver, and hex wrench.
1.
On the LXD Equatorial Mount, remove the rubber knurling
on the Declination slow-motion knob (2), Fig. 2, and
remove this knob by loosening the hex set screw.
1
Please take a few minutes to read this manual and become
familiar with all of the #1697 Computer Drive System's
capabilities.
2
3
1
Fig. 2 Installing the Printed Circuit Boards. (1) Phillips-Head
Screws; (2) Declination Slow-Motion Knob; (3) Cover Plate.
Fig. 1 #1697 Computer Drive System.
2.
Remove the four screws (1), Fig. 2, holding the cover plate
(3), Fig. 2, on the Declination slow-motion knob side of the
mount. Discard this cover plate.
3.
Inside the Declination housing, you will see the Declination
motor and cord with connector. Attach the Dec motor cord,
(3), Fig. 3, to the Driver printed circuit board (PCB), (2),
Fig. 3. Note the correct orientation of the connector, as
shown in Fig. 3.
4.
On the Driver PCB, on the opposite side of the Dec motor
cord (3), Fig. 3, look for a piece of electrical tape covering
the circuitry. If the tape is not in place and the circuitry is
visible, place a piece of electrical tape over this area to
prevent the contacts from rubbing against the polar shaft
during the installation process. Leave the electrical tape in
place after the Driver PCB is installed.
5.
The Driver PCB has a 16-pin ribbon cable (1), Fig. 3
already attached to the new cover plate. Feed this cable
into the Declination housing as shown in Fig. 3.
6.
Place the Driver PCB into the Declination housing and
replace the four Phillips-head screws, (1), Fig. 2, to hold
the new cover plate in place.
INSTALLATION
For the #1697 CDS to function properly, there are two printed
circuit boards that need to be installed into the Declination
housing of the LXD Equatorial Mounts.
The CDS printed circuit boards are sensitive to static
electricity and should be handled with care to avoid
damage. Whenever handling the electronics, be sure to
observe the following precautions:
•
Leave the printed circuit boards in the static-resistant bags
until ready to install them into the Declination housing.
•
When making the installation, avoid standing on a carpeted
floor. Instead, stand on a formica or wood floor surface
when installing the boards.
•
Limit your movements while installing the printed circuit
boards, as unnecessary movement can increase the
chance of static build-up and discharge.
•
•
Discharge yourself by touching the metal of the telescope
before you touch the printed circuit boards.
Always handle the printed circuit boards by the edges;
avoid touching any of the components.
1
1
2
3
2
Fig. 3 CDS Driver Printed
Circuit Board. (1) 16-Pin
Ribbon Cable; (2) Driver PCB;
(3) Dec Motor Cable.
Fig. 4 CDS Printed Circuit
Board. (1) CDS PCB;
(2) 16-Pin Ribbon Cable
-57.
Replace the Declination slow-motion knob (2), Fig. 2. Lock
in place by tightening the set screw, and replace the rubber
knurling.
8.
Remove the cover plate on the opposite side of the
Declination housing, by removing the four Phillips-head
screws holding it in place.
9.
Route the 16-pin ribbon cable from the Driver PCB so that
it exits the housing on the lower right-hand side. Be sure
this cable does not cover the hole in the Declination shaft,
which will block light from reaching the optional #814 Polar
Alignment Finder should one be installed.
1
2
4
10. Connect the 16-pin ribbon cable (2), Fig. 4, to the CDS
PCB (1), Fig. 4.
11. To position the CDS PCB into the Declination casting, first
angle the top of the PCB into the opening, allowing it to
clear the housing. Then, tilt the lower section of the CDS
into the housing. Secure the CDS in place with the four
screws.
12. Plug the RA motor coil cord into the R.A. motor port (8),
Fig. 5 on the CDS Power Panel.
3
Fig. 6: #1697 Keypad Hand Controller. (1) Display; (2) Direction
Keys; (3) Speed Indicator LEDs; (4) Speed Selection Keys.
Basic Telescope Setup:
13. Plug the #1697 Keypad Hand Controller into the keypad
port (7), Fig. 5, on the CDS Power Panel.
1.
Polar align your telescope.
accompany the telescope.
14. Plug in one of the provided power supplies: the AC Wall
Adapter Power Converter, or the DC Cigarette Lighter
Power Cord (used in an automobile's cigarette lighter
outlet). The power supply plugs into the power port (9),
Fig 5.
2.
Turn "on" the #1697 Control Box. The Keypad Display (1),
Fig. 6, displays “MEADE” for several seconds as the microprocessor does a self-diagnostic test. When the selfdiagnostic test is complete, the display shows “TELESCOPE” on the top line, and “OBJECT LIBRARY” on the
lower line. The Speed Indicator LED (3), Fig. 6, next to the
“SLEW” button is illuminated.
3.
At this point, the #1697 Computer Drive System is ready to
use. Select a speed at which to move the telescope by
pressing the appropriate Speed Selection Key (4), Fig 6. As
a speed is selected, the red LED next to the selected speed
lights up. Then press one of the four direction keys, (2),
Fig. 6, to move the telescope in that direction at the
selected speed.
4.
With the CDS power turned on, the LXD mount can be
moved in either of two ways: (1) By loosening the R.A. and
Dec locks as described in the instruction manual supplied
with your telescope; or (2) by using the N, E, W, or S keys
(2), Fig. 6, on the Keypad.
Installation of the #1697 CDS is now complete.
MEADE
COMPUTER DRIVE SYSTEM
LX QUARTZ - DC SERVO MOTOR
SMART DRIVE
1
2
N
Current (mA x 100)
5
6
Focuser
Power
12vDC
On Off
8
7
Reticle
11
10
9
S
4
3
RS 232
Keypad
RA Motor
12
See the instructions that
NOTE: Telescope movement can only been seen in the SLEW
and FIND modes; CNTR (center) and GUIDE motions can only
be seen while looking through the telescope.
CCD
Aux
Fig. 5: #1697 Control Panel. (1) Current Indicator (Ammeter);
(2) North/South Switch; (3) On/Off Switch; (4) LED Indicator Light;
(5) Focuser Port; (6) Reticle Port; (7) Keypad Hand Controller Port;
(8) R.A. Motor Port; (9) Power Port; (10) RS-232 Port; (11) CCD
Port; (12) Aux Port.
QUICK START
Although the electronics within the #1697 Computer Drive
System are advanced, the system is very straightforward to
operate—even for the beginning observer. This section is
designed as a "quick start" section for those observers anxious
to begin. Be sure to come back and read the more detailed
sections of this manual. Most of the system’s features cannot be
accessed without full knowledge of these details.
DO NOT attempt to adjust the LXD Equatorial Mounts with the
manual R.A. or Dec slow-motion controls when the CDS Drive
is turned on. Serious damage to the drive motor assemblies
could result.
Please note that it is possible for the telescope to hit one of the
tripod legs while manually moving the LXD Equatorial Mount
with the Keypad direction keys. The CDS software is
programmed, however to avoid hitting the tripod legs provided
the proper time, date, and site information has been entered,
and that the telescope has been properly aligned, as described
on page 7.
The quick start method described above allows you to use the
telescope, but does not make any use of the computer features
available. To utilize all the features of the #1697 Computer
Drive System, it is necessary to enter some information into the
-6system’s computer memory. It is also necessary to learn the
menu structure of the Keypad Hand Controller, which is
described beginning on page 8.
→1) A A A
2) A A A
Display 4
Basic CDS Setup:
This section explains what keys to push to get the minimum data
required into the computer system, without any detailed
explanation. The detailed explanation can be found later in the
manual. These steps will only take a few minutes and will allow
immediate use of all of the CDS features.
In order for the CDS to utilize the stellar coordinate system,
Right Ascension (R.A.) and Declination (Dec), the system needs
to know three pieces of information: the location (latitude and
longitude) of the observing site; the local time; and the date.
This information only needs to be entered one time — the CDS
remembers the data even when the power is off.
1)
5.
Display 5
6.
Entering the Latitude and Longitude of the Observing
Site.
Once the above information is determined, it is easiest to enter
the data into the system while the telescope and CDS are
indoors where there is light—do not try to do it outside at night.
→TELESCOPE
OBJECT LIBRARY
Display 1
2.
Press the ENTER key to select the TELESCOPE functions.
The display should look like Display 2.
→1) SITE
2) ALIGN
Display 2
3.
Press the ENTER key to select the SITE functions. The
display should look like Display 3.
→1) A A A
2) A A A
✔
Display 3
4.
Press and Hold the ENTER key until the Keypad Hand
Controller beeps. This selects the first site for editing. The
display should look like Display 4, with the first “A” flashing
NOTE: To edit the letters "AAA", press the NEXT or PREV keys
on the Keypad Hand Controller to cycle through the letters of the
alphabet. Use the "E" and "W" keys to move between positions.
Use the number keys to enter your latitude. Mistakes may
be corrected by moving the curser back, using the “E” and
“W” keys. A negative latitude may be entered by
positioning the cursor under the “+” and hitting the NEXT
key. When the latitude is correctly entered, press ENTER.
The curser moves to the LONG line. The display will look
like Display 6.
LAT
= +33° 35’
→LONG = 000° 00’
Display 6
7.
The following example is for an observing site in Costa Mesa,
CA (LAT=33°35', LONG=117°42'). If a mistake is made during
entry, simply turn off the telescope and restart this procedure.
(A more detailed description of the procedure shown below can
be found on page 11, "SITE".)
Turn "On" the #1697 CDS. After a few seconds (after the
self-diagnostic test is complete), the display will look like
Display 1.
Press the ENTER key. The display should look like
Display 5. (Number values may vary.)
→LAT
= +00° 00’
LONG = 000° 00’
The position of your observing site should be determined as
accurately as possible, to within 1 or 2 minutes of arc in both
latitude and longitude.
Many automobile, pilot, and
topographical maps, as well as most atlases show latitude and
longitude in 15 minute increments or better. The accuracy of the
CDS depends on the accuracy of the data that is entered.
1.
✔
Use the number keys (as described above) to enter your
longitude. When complete, the display will look like
Display 7.
LAT
= +33° 35’
→LONG = 117° 42’
Display 7
NOTE: The longitude standard used in the CDS starts at 0
degrees in Greenwich U.K. and increases Westerly only to 359
degrees 59 minutes. Many maps will show Easterly longitudes
which cannot be entered into the Keypad Display (e.g., if the map
indicates an observing site at an Easterly longitude of 18 degrees
27 minutes, it is necessary to enter the position as 341 degrees
33 minutes).
The differences in longitude and latitude as they pertain to
different map spheroid projections are minor differences that are
too small to adversely affect the longitude and latitude data input.
8.
Press ENTER to complete the site information input. The
display will go back to Display 3.
9.
Press MODE to go back to Display 2.
10. Press MODE again to go back to Display 1.
2) Entering the Local Time and Date.
The local time should be set as accurately as possible using the
24 hour format. The pointing accuracy of the telescope depends
on the accuracy of the time entered because the local time and
date are used to determine sidereal time (star time). Choose a
reliable source as a reference for accurate time such as your
local airport, or telephone company. In the U.S.A. you can double
check the accuracy of the exact minutes by dialing WWV for the
universal coordinated time at (303) 499-7111 (be sure to enter
your local time hour information, not the U.T. hour).
The following example is for 4:25:00 P.M. on Jan. 15, 1998.
1.
The display should look like Display 1. If it does not, press
the MODE key until it does.
-72.
Press the MODE key twice. The display will look like
Display 8, but with random LOCAL and SIDE times.
→LOCAL = 11:24:30
SIDE = 21:38:02
DATE = 11 / 2 8 / 9 7
Display 12
9.
Display 8
3.
Press and hold the ENTER key until the Keypad Hand
Controller beeps. The display will look like Display 13, with
the blinking cursor over the first number.
Press and hold the ENTER key until the Keypad Hand
Controller beeps (display like Display 9).
DATE = 11 / 2 8 / 9 7
→LOCAL = 11:24:30
SIDE = 21:38:02
Display 13
Display 9
4.
Using the number keys, enter the current local time to within
5 seconds. (Remember, 4:25:00 P.M. is 16:25:00 in the 24
hour format.) Corrections can be made by moving the
flashing cursor using the "W" and "E" keys. The display
should look like Display 10.
10. Use the number keys to enter the current date. The display
should look like Display 14. Use the "W" and "E" keys to
move the blinking cursor left and right to correct any
mistakes.
DATE = 0 1 / 1 5 / 9 8
→LOCAL = 16:25:00
SIDE = 21:38:02
Display 14
11. Press the ENTER key when the date is correct.
Display 10
5.
Press the ENTER key when the time is correct. The display
will change to Display 11.
After you press the ENTER key, the Keypad Hand Controller will
display “Updating planetary data”. The position of the planets
depends on the date, so anytime the date is changed, the planet
positions are recalculated.
This is all the information the CDS needs to make use of all its
features. The next steps actually align the telescope with the
night sky.
Hours from GMT:
+08
3) Telescope and CDS Alignment.
Display 11
6.
Enter the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) time zone shift.
(This procedure is a lot easier than it sounds.) For users in
the United States, look up your time zone in the table below
to find the GMT time zone shift.
TIME ZONE
Eastern
Central
Mountain
Pacific
Hawaii
Standard Time
+ 5 Hours
+ 6 Hours
+ 7 Hours
+ 8 Hours
+ 10 Hours
After the basic information has been entered into the system, the
CDS is ready for use. With a telescope that has been properly
assembled and balanced (as per the telescope's instruction
manual), you are ready to begin. Following these steps:
1.
Face the field tripod leg (1), Fig. 7, that is centered under
the Power Panel, so that the LXD mount points to the
approximate North or South Pole star position in the sky
(using a simple hand held compass may help). Then, use
the Bubble Level located on the base of the LXD mount to
level the telescope.
2.
Turn "On" the CDS electronics. After a few seconds (when
the self-diagnostic test is complete) the display will look like
Display 15.
Daylight Savings Time
+ 4 Hours
+ 5 Hours
+ 6 Hours
+ 7 Hours
+ 9 Hours
For example: For the Pacific Time Zone on Daylight Savings
Time, the GMT time zone shift is +7 hours.
7.
Use the number keys to enter the GMT time zone shift
determined from the table above. Press ENTER when
done; the display will go back to Display 8. If you are using
the CDS East of Greenwich U.K., then you must enter a (minus) GMT time zone shift by moving the blinking cursor
backwards in the display with the "W" key and then pressing
the NEXT key. The + (plus) sign will change to - (minus).
→TELESCOPE
OBJECT LIBRARY
Display 15
3.
NOTE: The time keeping mechanism in the CDS is a standard
clock chip. It may be necessary to confirm the time when first
starting an observing run. However, once the system is aligned
and the telescope knows its exact location in the sky, this
information is used to calculate a very accurate sidereal time.
8.
Press the ENTER key. This will select the DATE display
(Display 12), with a random date showing.
Press the ENTER key to select the TELESCOPE functions.
The display should look like Display 16.
→1) SITE
2) ALIGN
Display 16
4.
Press the NEXT key to move the arrow to the lower line
(see Display 17).
-8as a reference for the position and the catalog number of
these prominent stars. The display will look like Display 20.
1) SITE
→2) ALIGN
Display 17
5.
Move to 90 deg., dec.
and 00 H.A.
Display 18
6.
Center your star choice
then press ENTER
Press the ENTER key to activate the ALIGN function. The
display will look like Display 18.
Display 20
10. Center the second alignment star in the telescope
eyepiece using the "N", "E", "W", or "S" keys on the
Keypad Hand Controller. Once the second star is
centered, press the ENTER key to complete the alignment
sequence.
Should the alignment star be hidden from the view of the
telescope, do not manually move the telescope. Simply
press the ENTER key and select another bright star from
the Alignment Star List that appears in Appendix B. Look
up the catalog number of the star. Then, press the STAR
key and type in the star catalog number using the number
keys. Press the ENTER key, and then the GO TO key. The
telescope will then slew to the approximate position of the
alternate star. Center the star with the "N", "E", "W", or "S"
keys, then press and hold the ENTER key until the display
reads "Coordinates matched". This method synchronizes
the CDS computer to the sky.
Loosen the R.A. and Dec lock knobs on the LXD Equatorial
Mount. Position the optical tube assembly so that the Dec
Circle reads 90°. Retighten the Dec Lock Knob. Then
loosen the R.A. lock knob and rotate the telescope so that
the R.A. pointer and the Hour Angle Pointer are
approximately in line with each other. This will position the
tube assembly and the counterweight so that they are
parallel to the ground and the Power Panel is facing the sky,
as shown in Fig. 7. This step is necessary for the CDS to
work. The telescope has some "illegal" positions (places
where the telescope will not go) and these two steps insure
proper operation.
The telescope is now polar aligned and fully functional, and will
automatically track objects. From this point on, make all
telescope movements by use of the Keypad Hand Controller.
Manual movements by loosening the Dec or R.A. locks will
cause the CDS to "lose" position, requiring realignment.
USING THE #1697 COMPUTER DRIVE SYSTEM
1) The MODE Key
The CDS has 5 basic Keypad Hand Controller displays, and the
MODE key is used to move between them. The 5 modes are:
1
1.
Telescope Functions. The TELESCOPE mode is where all
telescope functions are changed or activated. The
OBJECT LIBRARY is where the features of the object
library are accessed.
2.
Telescope Position. The first display shows the telescope's
position in Right Ascension (R.A.) and Declination (Dec).
3.
Time and Date. The first display shows local time and
sidereal time. The second display (accessed by pressing
the ENTER key) shows the date.
4.
Timer and Freq. This display is a countdown timer and
allows the user to change drive rates. These are advanced
features.
5.
All Off. This mode simply turns off all displays and
backlighting. You can also adjust the backlighting
brightness by pressing the ENTER key and using the
PREV and NEXT keys to adjust the brightness.
Fig. 7: Aligning the Telescope. (1) Alignment tripod leg.
7.
Press the ENTER key. The CDS electronics will slew the
LXD Equatorial Mount to the calculated position of the pole
star. The display will look like Display 19.
Center Polaris
then press ENTER
2) Library Object Keys
8.
Center the pole star in the eyepiece of the telescope by
using the Azimuth adjustment knobs and the Latitude
adjustment knob on the LXD Equatorial Mount. Do not use
the R.A. or Dec controls. Using the R.A. and Dec slowmotion controls will destroy the alignment procedures.
The Library Object keys, ("M" - for Messier objects, "STAR" - for
alignment stars, SAO and GCVS catalogs, and "CNGC" - for
Computerized New General Catalog) may be directly accessed
while in any of the 5 main Keypad displays. (See Appendix C of
this manual for a listing of the 64,359-Object Library). Simply
press a library object key, type in the number of the object
desired, and press ENTER.
9.
After centering the pole star, press the ENTER key. The
telescope will slew to one of the 33 bright and well known
stars as a second alignment star. Appendix B can be used
For example: during the first part of the year, a good object to
begin with is M42—the Great Orion Nebula. Press: the "M" key,
the "4" key, the "2" key, and then the ENTER key. The display
Display 19
-9will show data on the object (name, rating, object type,
brightness, and size). Now, press GO TO. The telescope will
automatically slew to M42. If the desired object is not above the
horizon, the Keypad Hand Controller will display the message
“OBJECT BELOW HORIZON.”
Other good objects to begin with (if above the horizon) are any
of the M objects—from M1 to M 110, and the planets. To find a
planet, press the STAR key, followed by the number of the
planet you wish to view (see chart below). Then, press ENTER.
7
1
8
2
9
10
Planet
Mercury
Venus
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Uranus
Neptune
Pluto
Star #
901
902
904
905
906
907
908
909
3
The Moon
903
6
11
4
5
12
13
If the planet is too close to the Sun for safe viewing (closer than
15 degrees) the Keypad will display a message to that effect.
3) Daytime Slewing
You may want to use the slewing feature of the CDS to locate
the planets or other astronomical objects during the daytime. If
not done correctly, this can be very dangerous.
The CDS “knows” where the planets are in relation to the Sun,
but the telescope does not “know” where the Sun actually is.
When the GO TO button is pushed, the telescope will slew to
the object by the most direct route, which may move directly
over the Sun.
WARNING
Use extreme caution when using the GO TO feature of the
telescope to locate objects in the daytime! Looking into the
telescope or viewfinder, even for the shortest fraction of a
second, with sunlight entering the optics, will cause instant
and irreversible eye damage. The telescope itself may also
suffer serious damage if it is pointed at or near the Sun.
A responsible adult should supervise every aspect of telescope
operation when children are observing in the daytime.
Use the following procedure to safely locate objects during the
daytime, whether by manually slewing the telescope, using the
"N", "E", "W", "S" keys, or using the GO TO key:
1.
Before allowing the telescope to move, place the dust
covers on the main telescope and viewfinder (or remove
the viewfinder from the telescope completely). This will
keep the Sun’s damaging light out of the telescope should
it move across the Sun.
2.
Select the desired object from the Object Library. Then,
press the GO TO button or manually move the telescope
by using the "N", "S", "E", or "W" keys.
3.
After the telescope has stopped moving, visually check the
telescope’s position to be sure it is not pointing near the
Sun. If there is any question in your mind that the
telescope may be pointing at or near the Sun, do not look
through the telescope. Only when you are absolutely
convinced that the telescope is pointing away from the Sun
should you remove the telescope’s dust cover and observe
the object.
Above all, be careful and use common sense. Observing the
Sun, even for the shortest fraction of a second, will cause
instant and irreversible eye damage.
Fig. 8: CDS Keypad Hand Controller. (1) ENTER Key; (2) MODE
Key; (3) GOTO Key; (4) Direction Keys; (5) RET Keys; (6) Speed
Keys; (7) Red LED Map Light; (8) Display; (9) ALT LED; (10) Focus
Key; (11) Object Keys; (12) MAP Key; (13) PREV & NEXT Keys.
THE CDS KEYPAD HAND CONTROLLER
The Computer Drive System gives an observer virtually every
telescope function possible with all the controls in a compact
hand-held console. The Keypad Hand Controller's tactile touch
buttons are designed to have the right feel, even through gloves.
Its red LED backlit display, key arrangement, and easy-tounderstand information makes knowing where the telescope is
pointing in the sky much easier than with most other systems.
Within a few minutes of powering up the Computer Drive
System, the Keypad becomes warm. This is normal. The electronics within the CDS utilize a heat sink to provide the right
operating environment temperature for the LCD display — even
in very cold conditions. If you are indeed in these colder
conditions, the display may not be visible until the Keypad has
transferred enough heat. This process can take a few minutes
upon powering up the telescope. While severe cold weather is
not damaging to the electronics, it is advised to keep the Keypad in a warmer area to allow immediate proper display
performance.
The Computer Drive System Keypad buttons are described
below:
1. ENTER Key
The ENTER key (1), Fig. 8, is used to select a menu file, a file
option, or to edit a value. To select a file or an option, press and
release the ENTER key. The Computer Drive System will give a
short beep tone and perform the action that you have requested.
To edit a value, press and hold the ENTER key until a double
beep tone is heard and a blinking cursor appears in the display.
There are some other specific situations where the ENTER key
is used. These are described in detail where necessary. From
now on, the two types of presses will be called ‘press’ and ‘press
and hold’.
2. MODE Key
The MODE key (2), Fig. 8, cycles through the following five
modes of the Computer Drive System: Telescope/Object
Library; Coordinates/GO TO; Clock/Calendar; Timer/Frequency;
Keypad Off/Brightness Adjust. The MODE key is also used to
exit from specific menu files.
- 10 3. GO TO Key
7. FOCUS Key
The GO TO key (3), Fig. 8, causes the telescope to
automatically slew to specific library entry coordinates. The GO
TO key also produces a blinking cursor in the GO TO menu file
of the COORDINATES/GO TO mode, to allow new Right
Ascension and Declination coordinates to be entered. Pressing
GO TO while the telescope is slewing to an object pauses the
slewing process, pressing GO TO again resumes the slew.
The FOCUS key (10), Fig. 8, allows 2 speed electric focus
control of the optional Meade #1207 Electric Focuser. (see
Optional Accessories, page 18.) To activate, press either the
SLEW or FIND key (for fast focusing), or the CNTR or GUIDE
key (for slow focusing), press and hold the FOCUS key, and then
press and hold the PREV or NEXT keys (13), Fig. 8, for near and
far focus.
4. Direction Keys
Labeled "N", "S", "E", and "W", (4), Fig. 8, these four keys make
the #1697 Computer Drive System move, or slew, in a specific
direction, at any one of four different speeds (explained below).
During data entry, the E and W keys can be used to move the
blinking cursor back and forth across the LCD display, so that if
an error is made during entry, it can be erased and changed.
The remaining twelve keys have multiple functions; there are up
and down arrow keys and numbered keys from 0 through 9.
Each one of these keys also has alternate functions listed above
the arrow symbols and numbers. The ALT LED light (9), Fig. 8,
is only visible when entering numerical data. A description of the
individual keys follows:
5. RET Key
Typically used for guiding the telescope during an
astrophotograph, the RET key (5), Fig. 8, is used to change the
brightness and pulse rate of the optional corded, plug-in style
illuminated reticle eyepiece, such as the Meade Modified
Achromatic 12mm Illuminated Reticle Eyepiece, or the Meade
Series 4000 Plössl 9mm Illuminated Reticle Eyepiece. (See
Optional Accessories, page 18.) Pressing either the PREV and
NEXT (up and down arrow) keys (13), Fig. 8, while holding down
the RET key, alters the reticle brightness level up or down.
When guiding on very faint stars, it may be helpful to pulse the
light from the LED so that the reticle crosshairs blink on and off.
It is possible to adjust both the reticle brightness as well as the
pulse rates. There are three pulse rates that can be used, all with
a one second pulse interval. The continuous illumination control
and pulse rates are set by holding down the RET key and
pressing one of the following keys; GUIDE (100% on, no
pulsing), CNTR (50% on, 50% off), MAP (25% on, 75% off),
CNGC (10% on, 90% off).
6. Speed Keys (SLEW, FIND, CENTER, and GUIDE)
These keys (6), Fig. 8, allow an observer to set the rate of
movement or slew speed in the drives of the #1697 CDS, as
activated by the N, S, E, and W keys. The chosen rate is
indicated by the speed indicator illuminated LED beside the rate
key that you have pressed. The speed rates are SLEW (8
degrees per second), FIND (2 degrees per second), CNTR (32X
sidereal rate), and GUIDE (2X sidereal rate).
NOTE: All of the slew speeds will drive the telescope in all four
directions, except for GUIDE. The 2X sidereal speed in GUIDE
has one difference in that it will not interrupt the Right Ascension
tracking direction to make Easterly (for Northern hemisphere) or
Westerly (for Southern hemisphere) adjustments; it merely stops
the drive motor and allow Earth's natural rotation to make the
correction.
SLEW, FIND, CENTER, and GUIDE keys also have numbers
listed (7, 4, 1, and 0 respectively). When editing a value, the
multiple function of each of these keys is realized. SLEW and
FIND are also used to set the ‘fast’ focus speed for the electric
focuser accessory option, while CNTR and GUIDE set the slow
focus speed (see details below). There are other special
functions for the CNTR and GUIDE keys that are discussed in
the RET KEY (5), Fig. 8, operations.
8. MAP Key
The Map key (12), Fig. 8, is used to activate the red LED Map
Light (7), Fig. 8 on top of the Keypad. The deep red LED light
protects your night vision while you search for a particular
accessory or examine a star chart.
9. Object Keys (M, STAR, and CNGC)
These keys (11), Fig. 8, allow direct access to the #1697 CDS’s
Object Library any time that you are not editing a value, setting a
parameter, or selecting a file menu. After pressing one of these
keys, the Keypad displays a blinking cursor, allowing you to enter
the catalog number for objects listed in the library (see Appendix
C. 64,359-Object Library). After entry, press the ENTER key. To
observe the entered object, press the GO TO key. A brief
description of the catalog key symbols are; M (Messier objects),
STAR (stars and planets), and CNGC (deep sky objects).
10. PREV and NEXT Keys
The PREV and NEXT (up and down arrow) keys (13), Fig. 8,
move the display's LCD arrow up and down the menu files and
menu file options, so that you may choose an individual selection
to enter. These keys are also used when adjusting the RET
brightness range, or when activating the electric focuser. PREV
and NEXT are also used to select the objects from the Object
Library when using START FIND (explained on page 15).
MEADE
COMPUTER DRIVE SYSTEM
LX QUARTZ - DC SERVO MOTOR
SMART DRIVE
Current (mA x 100)
5
6
Focuser
9
3
2
1
S
On
Off
8
7
Reticle
11
10
Power
12vDC
N
4
RS 232
Keypad
RA Motor
CCD
Aux
12
Fig. 9: #1697 CDS Control Panel. (1) Current Indicator (Ammeter);
(2) North/South Switch; (3) On/Off Switch; (4) LED Indicator Light;
(5) Focuser Port; (6) Reticle Port; (7) Keypad Hand Controller Port;
(8) R.A. Motor Port; (9) Power Port; (10) RS-232 Port; (11) CCD
Port; (12) Auxiliary Port.
THE CDS CONTROL PANEL
1. Current (mA x 100) (1), Fig. 9: The Current (Ammeter)
display is a series of vertical red LED bars. Each fully lit bar
represents 1/10 of an amp (or 100 milliamps) of current draw,
with the lowest value on the extreme left of the scale. During
normal tracking speeds, the Ammeter will show a few LED bars
lit up. However, when a slew is initiated, the current draw will
light up the entire LED display, momentarily showing the inertia
load. This effect is entirely normal. The current draw
- 11 information can be useful if you are trying to calculate how much
battery life is available during an observing run. As an example,
if the ammeter has four bars lit, (indicating 0.4 amps) and the
system is using a 12 amp hour battery, determine the
approximate battery life by dividing 12 amp hours by 0.4 amps,
resulting in a battery life of 30 hours.
2. N/S (2), Fig. 9: The N/S switch converts the CDS for
operation in the northern or southern hemisphere, making the
LXD drive reverse its tracking direction. The appropriate N or S
switch position should be chosen before powering up. The CDS
will not recognize a change made on the N/S switch after power
has been turned on.
Note: If traveling across the equator, be sure to set the proper
+ or - latitude SITE entry for your final destination. (See
page 6: Entering the Latitude and Longitude of the Observing
Site).
3. On/Off (3), Fig. 9: This switch turns power to the CDS system
on and off.
4. Red LED Indicator (4), Fig. 9: When illuminated, the red
LED indicates power to the system.
5. Focuser (5), Fig. 9: The Focuser port accepts optional
corded, plug-in style electric focusers, such as the Meade
#1207 Electric Focuser, to allow electric focus adjustment
control from the CDS Keypad.
6. Reticle (6), Fig. 9: The Reticle port accepts optional corded,
plug-in style illuminated reticle eyepieces such as the Meade
12mm Illuminated Reticle Eyepiece, or the Meade Series 4000
Plössl 9mm Illuminated Reticle Eyepiece, to allow brightness
control and on/ off pulsing rates which can be set from the CDS
Keypad.
7. Keypad (7), Fig. 9: The Keypad port is a 4-pin phone jack
connector socket, designed to accept standard 4-pin phone jack
coil cords. One end of the supplied coil cord plugs into the
Keypad port, the other end plugs into the CDS Keypad.
8. RA Motor (8), Fig. 9: The RA Motor port is an 8-pin phone
jack connector socket, designed to accept standard 8-pin phone
jack cable. One end of the supplied cable plugs in to the Control
Panel and the other plugs into the RA Drive Motor.
9. Power 12vDC (10), Fig. 9: The Power 12v DC port is
designed to accept the DC Power Cord that is supplied as
standard equipment with the CDS. The acceptable input
voltage range is 12 to 18 volts. Note that the center post of the
Power port is positive.
10. RS-232 (11), Fig. 9: The RS-232 port allows a user to
interface the CDS with a personal computer (PC).
Communicating at a rate of 9600 baud, the RS-232 port allows
a PC to access every feature of the CDS system. Appendix D
provides a wiring schematic to make your own RS-232
connector cord, a cord test program, a demonstration program,
and the CDS Command Set for writing programs. Meade
Instruments supplies this information for professional
programmers. Meade Instruments Corporation does not offer
support or advice for writing software for the RS-232 option.
MODE FUNCTIONS
To view the different modes within the CDS system, press the
MODE button (2), Fig. 8, located between the ENTER and GO
TO keys at the top of the Keypad. By entering and/or editing
information in the different modes, you can customize the
operation of your CDS to meet virtually any of your observing
requirements. Better still, all of the critical information such as
time, location, alignment type, and many other functions are kept
in memory...even with the CDS turned off!
The type of alignment, the objects that you see, the location that
you observe from, the tracking speeds of the drives, all of the
clock and timing functions, the position information, and even the
brightness level of the backlit Keypad are defined by the
information that you give and/or the commands that you edit,
through five different modes of the CDS computerized hand
controller.
Once you have selected the desired mode (by pressing the
MODE key), you can then select the individual file within the
mode by pressing the PREV or NEXT key (13), Fig. 8, moving the
LCD arrow up or down beside the file description. Although you
can only see two menu selections at a time in the Keypad Display
(8), Fig. 8, you can see more as you continue to press the PREV
and NEXT keys.
When the desired file is chosen, press the ENTER key to view
the file’s menu. To choose an individual menu, again use the
PREV or NEXT key to move the LCD arrow up or down the file’s
menu. To explore a menu selection, again press the ENTER key.
In some modes there will be options for a file’s menu selection, in
others you will only enter data.
Any time you wish to return to the main file heading in a particular
mode, just press MODE and it will behave as an exit key.
1. MODE ONE: TELESCOPE/ OBJECT LIBRARY
This is the default mode of the CDS. To explore either the
TELESCOPE menu file or the OBJECT LIBRARY menu file,
move the LCD arrow to the appropriate selection by using the
PREV or the NEXT key and press the ENTER key.
A. TELESCOPE Menu File
Below are descriptions of the eleven menu selections of the
TELESCOPE menu file, including individual menu files and file
options.
1) SITE: The SITE menu option allows a user to enter the
latitude and longitude of up to four favorite viewing locations. The
entered longitude and latitude is compared by the CDS’s
computer to the local time, GMT offset, and calendar date to
accurately calculate celestial coordinates. Once entered, the
information is stored in the telescope’s internal memory, and
need never be re-entered. To enter new site information or to
change an old one, refer to page 6 (Entering the Latitude and
Longitude of the Observing Site). Once the site is chosen, exit
the SITE menu by pressing the MODE key.
11. CCD (12), Fig. 9: The CCD port allows direct interfacing
with Meade CCD autoguider/imaging equipment such as the
Pictor 201XT, 216XT, 416XT and 1616XT to accomplish CCD
autoguiding.
2) ALIGN:
Astrophotographers routinely require polar
alignments of the highest accuracy for the finest guiding
characteristics. The initial polar alignment may be refined by
using the CDS’s electronics. Be sure to enter the correct local
time and the observing site's latitude and longitude before
beginning.
12. Aux (13), Fig. 9: The Auxiliary port is reserved for future
product expansion. The output voltage through the Aux port
equals the input voltage to the system.
The following procedure should be performed in two or three 15
minute intervals. At each interval the telescope will slew to the
area where the pole star should be centered in the optics. The
- 12 pole star may be somewhat off-center in the eyepiece, showing
that an alignment error was made during the initial setup. Using
the Latitude adjustment knob and Azimuth control knob on the
LXD Equatorial Mount, center the pole star during each interval
exercise, then follow the rest of the routine.
SMART DRIVE training, set the brightness and/or the pulse
rate of the illuminated reticle (see page 10, The RET Key) on
the chosen guide star and practice guiding (keeping the star
exactly centered in the eyepiece) for a few minutes. Then,
follow these steps:
1.
From the ALIGN menu option in the TELESCOPE mode,
press the ENTER key.
1.
2.
Ignore the Keypad display instructions to return the
telescope to 90 degrees in Declination and 00 HA. Instead,
press the GOTO key and the CDS will slew to the calculated
position of where the pole star should be.
While in the SMART menu, move the LCD arrow to
LEARN by using the PREV or NEXT key and press
ENTER.
2.
Numbers appear next to the LEARN display. These
numbers will begin counting down to zero. The highest
number that can appear is 200. This number represents a
sector of the worm wheel. The sector changes every 2.4
seconds. The SMART DRIVE needs to find its beginning
sector before training can start. It will be necessary to wait
until the system counts down to zero to begin.
3.
As the Keypad display approaches its beginning sector, a
beeping alerts you that training is about to commence. At
this point, begin guiding on the chosen guide star, using
the N, S, E, and W keys.
3.
Using only the Latitude and Azimuth adjustments on
the LXD Equatorial Mount, re-center the pole star in the
field of view in the eyepiece.
4.
Press the ENTER key, and the CDS will slew to a bright star
overhead. Center this star using the "N", "S", "E", or
"W" keys and press ENTER.
5.
While waiting 15-20 minutes between alignment intervals,
the telescope may be used to observe.
6.
After 15-20 minutes, repeat the process, beginning with
Step 1. This process may be repeated as often as desired
to obtain the highest accuracy. After each 15 minute
interval, the pole star becomes more accurately centered.
An optional illuminated reticle crosshair eyepiece makes the
job of centering the star easy.
NOTE: Pressing the MODE key at any point in the alignment
routine will abort the routine and exit to the top menu.
There may be situations when it is impossible to see the pole star
(e.g., something blocking your line of sight). In such an occasion,
follow the Precise Polar Alignment instructions in Appendix A of
this manual. You will require the use of an illuminated reticle
crosshair eyepiece to complete the task. Once finished, follow
the steps outlined below to access the Object Library.
3) SMART: The SMART menu file controls the CDS Smart Drive,
a system designed to eliminate the small errors induced by tiny
gear imperfections that tend to slightly speed up or slow down the
drive tracking speed. These gear imperfections occur in a
regular eight minute pattern, the time required for one rotation of
the worm. The CDS can be trained to remember the pattern of
these imperfections and automatically apply the corrections
needed. Use of the Smart Drive greatly enhances the tracking
characteristics of the CDS, thus simplifying guiding during
astrophotography.
The menu also has provisions for correcting Declination drift.
Smart Drive will retain its training, even after the telescope is
turned off. (Of course, it is possible to retrain the system or erase
the training, if desired.)
The SMART menu has five options. They are; LEARN,
UPDATE, ERASE, DEC LEARN, and DEC CORRECT. To train
the Smart Drive, the telescope must be equipped with an
illuminated reticle eyepiece. Be sure to train the Smart Drive in
the 60.1 Hz Quartz setting; the CDS is automatically set at 60.1
Hz at power up. Thereafter, you can adjust frequency setting in
the TIMER/ FREQ mode and still enjoy the periodic error
correction.
Training the SMART DRIVE:
Once polar alignment of your telescope has been completed, the
CDS is pointing the telescope to a bright star overhead, near the
Celestial Equator. This star may be used, or another, as long as
the chosen guide star is near 0 degrees in Declination and more
or less overhead in Right Ascension. Before beginning the
A tone will beep every few seconds throughout the training
session. Try to keep the star in the same location on the
crosshair during the ten minute training sequence.
4.
After eight minutes, the beeping stops, indicating that the
training is over. The Smart Drive immediately starts
playing back your drive corrections automatically,
dramatically improving the R.A. drive tracking
characteristics.
If you wish to further refine the accuracy of the drive system,
move the LCD arrow to UPDATE and press ENTER and follow
the same instructions as above. This can be done in UPDATE
as many times as you wish. With each training, the Smart Drive
will average your training sequences.
If a mistake has been made in training (e.g. pushing E instead
of W), you can eliminate the memory by moving the LCD arrow
to ERASE and press ENTER.
DEC LEARN:
A star that drifts consistently North or South during guiding, can
also be corrected for. With a guide star centered in the
telescope's field of view, move the LCD arrow to DEC LEARN
and press ENTER.
Begin making drive corrections
immediately by pressing any of the direction (N, S, E, W) keys
to keep the star on the crosshair of the guiding eyepiece. It is
suggested that you train in DEC LEARN for at least half of your
intended exposure time for an astrophoto. The longer you train,
the more accurate the DEC LEARN will be. Once the desired
time is finished, press ENTER and the training will cease.
The Smart Drive then determines how many key pushes
occurred in N and S and chooses the direction which received
more commands. It then averages the time between key
pushes in the chosen direction. In this way, the Smart Drive can
correct for Declination drift (should your polar alignment be
slightly off), or will allow you to more precisely guide on nonstellar objects, such as comets, asteroids, etc.
To play back your DEC LEARN training, move the LCD arrow
to DEC CORRECT and press ENTER. To halt the play back
press ENTER again. To erase the DEC LEARN training, either
move the LCD arrow back to DEC LEARN and press ENTER
twice or turn the CDS off.
4) 12/24 HR: This menu selection of the TELESCOPE file
simply toggles between a twelve and twenty-four hour display
of local time in the Time Mode.
- 13 To toggle between 12 and 24 hours displays, move the LCD
arrow to 12/24HR and press ENTER. To return to the original
setting, press ENTER again.
5) HELP: The HELP menu selection of the TELESCOPE file is
an electronic mini-manual that briefly describes the function of
each command key on the CDS Keypad.
In addition, the High Precision Pointing feature requires the
refined alignment procedure described in the "Align" section on
page 11. Together, these alignment procedures will yield the
best pointing accuracy possible, placing images of objects onto
the active area of even the smallest CCD cameras available.
It should be stressed that for most applications, using
the High Precision Pointing feature is NOT required to
get maximum enjoyment out of the telescope. For an
evening of simple visual observations, a “casual”
alignment is all that is required. Don’t let the pointing
precision of the telescope become more important
than the fun of observing the night sky!
To use this menu, move the LCD arrow with the PREV or NEXT
key to HELP and press ENTER. To read the lines of text, use the
PREV and NEXT keys. To exit, press MODE.
6) REVERSE NS: The REVERSE NS menu selection of the
TELESCOPE file reverses the direction of the telescope in North
and South movements (e.g. pressing the N key moves the
telescope South, or down, instead of North, or up). This is
especially useful during some guiding applications.
To use the REVERSE NS menu, move the LCD arrow to
REVERSE NS and press ENTER. To return the direction
commands to the original setting, press ENTER again.
7) REVERSE EW: The REVERSE EW menu selection of the
TELESCOPE file reverses the direction of the telescope in East
and West movements (e.g. when the W key is pressed, the
telescope moves East). This is particularly useful during some
guiding applications.
To use the REVERSE EW menu, move the LCD arrow to
REVERSE EW and press ENTER. To return the direction
commands to the original setting, press ENTER again.
8) BALANCING: When adding optional equipment to the
telescope, like a heavy camera or Dewshield, it is often
necessary to rebalance the telescope using Tube Balance
Weight Systems.
b) Using High Precision Pointing
The High-Precision Pointing mode requires the “refined”
alignment, described above, to maximize the telescope’s
pointing ability. The CDS default condition is with High
Precision Pointing disabled. To activate the High Precision
Pointing mode, select the “high-precision” option from the
TELESCOPE menu (option #9). When selected, “HIGHPRECISION” will change to all upper case letters.
When the High Precision Pointing is activated, the following
procedure is used to locate an object:
(1)
Choose an object from the Object Library.
object's information displayed, press GO TO.
(2)
Instead of immediately slewing to the chosen object, the
High Precision Pointing searches the star catalog and
finds the three closest alignment stars to the object (or
position) entered. This process takes about 10 seconds
and the keypad displays:
Selecting option #8 from the TELESCOPE menu moves the
telescope rapidly up and down in Declination. This provides an
easy way to determine when the telescope is balanced in the
Declination axis.
When the telescope is out of balance, the instrument will draw
more current when slewing in the “heavy” direction. Also, the
Declination motor will sound different.
HIGH PRECISION
Searching ....
Display 21
(3)
After selecting option #8, watch the Ammeter and listen to the
Declination motor to determine when the telescope is balanced.
If needed, make the appropriate adjustments to the optical tube
assembly and counterweights until the telescope is properly
balanced.
Display 22
Using a reticle eyepiece and the "N", "S", E", and "W" keys,
center the bright star in the field of view. (Or center the star
on the CCD chip if using a CCD camera.) When the star
is centered, press GO TO. The CDS will now slew to the
chosen object.
a) Pointing Accuracy
A “refined” alignment will improve the pointing accuracy of the
telescope. This type of alignment requires:
Note: If the first alignment star is not in the field of view or if it is
obstructed by a land object, the other two stars are available.
Use the PREV and NEXT keys to cycle through the three
closest stars.
(4)
With the High Precision Pointing activated, the CDS
always slews to the closest alignment star first. After the
star is centered, then the CDS slews to the desired object.
(5)
To de-activate the High Precision Pointing option, select
the "HIGH PRECISION" option from the Telescope menu
—Entering accurate SITE information, time, and date.
—Proper selection of the two alignment stars.
—A reticle eyepiece (to exactly center the alignment stars.)
The telescope will slew to the nearest of three bright stars.
These three stars are brighter than 3rd magnitude, and are
far enough apart to insure that there will only be one in the
field of view. The keypad display will display:
Center STAR XXXX
then press GO TO
9) High-Precision Pointing: The High-Precision Pointing
feature of the CDS allows for very precise pointing of the
telescope. By incorporating a unique Coordinate Match process
with the 0.3 arc-sec resolution encoders and high-speed DC
servo motors, observers can now place objects in the
telescope’s field of view with high accuracy, making critical
image placement applications, such as CCD imaging, possible.
Normal telescope pointing accuracy is better than a few arcminutes when doing a casual alignment, such as the polar
alignment procedure discussed in the telescope's instruction
manual. A casual alignment is more than accurate enough for
many observing applications.
With the
- 14 and press ENTER. The letters will revert to lower case,
indicating the High Precision Pointing option is now "off".
10) SLEW RATE: Option #10 in the TELESCOPE menu is for
changing the slew rate of the CDS telescope. Slowing down the
slew rate will result in less noise as the telescope moves and will
also use a little less power. To change the slew rate, follow these
steps:
1.
Press the MODE key on the Keypad until the
TELESCOPE/OBJECT LIBRARY menu appears on the
display. The cursor should be next to the TELESCOPE
option - if not, then press the PREV key to move the cursor
up one space.
2.
Press ENTER to select the TELESCOPE functions.
3.
Press the PREV or NEXT keys to move the cursor to option
#10: SLEW RATE. On the right hand part of the display, the
number 8 is visible. This represents the current slew rate in
degrees per second.
Press the ENTER key to change the slew rate. Each successive
ENTER key press increments the slew rate by 1 degree per
second.
After setting the desired rate, press the MODE key to return to
the TELESCOPE / OBJECT LIBRARY menu.
Note: The slew rate is NOT stored in permanent memory and
needs to be reset each time the telescope is powered up. The
default slew rate is 8 degrees per second.
11) DEC BACKLASH COMPENSATION: When taking long
exposure astrophotographs, it is necessary to “guide” the
photograph to make sure the telescope is tracking perfectly,
otherwise stars will appear as ovals instead of pinpoints. This is
done by setting the CDS Keypad to the GUIDE speed,
monitoring the star location (e.g., with an off-axis guider and
illuminated reticle eyepiece), and making small corrections to the
telescope position by using the "N", "S", "E", and "W" keys.
When making these corrections, the R.A. motor will speed up or
slow down (by pressing the “E” and “W” keys). The Declination
motor, however, when activated (by pressing the “N” and “S”
keys) will actually stop and reverse direction. Because of
backlash in the Declination motor gearbox, there will be a few
seconds delay before the telescope begins to move when
reversing direction.
The Dec backlash feature compensates for the Dec motor
gearbox backlash and provides instant telescope movement
when the motor direction is reversed. To program the Dec
backlash, use the following procedure:
1.
Move to option #11 from the TELESCOPE menu. The
Keypad display will show:
11) BACKLASH 00
Display 23
The “00” in the display shows the number of arc-seconds of
backlash the CDS is set to compensate for (the default
setting is 0 arc-seconds).
2.
While observing a star at high power, time the Declination
movement delay when reversing the motor directions (by
pressing the “N” and “S” keys). Typical values are 2 to 4
seconds.
3.
The GUIDE speed for the Declination motor is 15 arcseconds per second. Therefore, multiply the number of
seconds delay by 15.
4.
Press and hold the ENTER key for 1 second. The Keypad
will beep and a blinking cursor will appear on the Keypad
display. Enter the number determined in step 3, above.
Press ENTER when the number is entered.
5.
Check the time delay as described in Step 2, above. If there
is still a time delay, then increase the compensation number.
If there is a slight jump when reversing direction, then the
number is too large.
When the compensation number is correct, the CDS
telescope will move almost instantly when reversing the
direction in Declination. This number is stored in permanent
memory and should never need to be set again.
12) PIER: When the telescope is mounted on the Standard Field
Tripod, areas of the sky straight up are restricted because the
tube may hit the tripod legs. Selecting "Pier" will turn off this
restriction, allowing the telescope to slew to the zenith (straight
up) when the telescope is mounted on a pier.
B. OBJECT LIBRARY Menu File
The OBJECT LIBRARY menu file is the other half of the
TELESCOPE/OBJECT LIBRARY mode. With it, you can
become a tourist of the sky, or conduct research surveys of the
64,359 library objects. The CDS Object Library is accessible in
the most user friendly system ever designed for observers and
astrophotographers.
The position epoch of these objects is for real time, updated
every time you turn on your CDS. Even the planet’s positions
have their orbits calculated! This not only qualifies the CDS as
the most accurate integrated object library available, it will never
require updated software for precession of the stars or planetary
orbital changes.
There are three primary ways to use the Object Library: directly
accessing the library by using the M, STAR, or CNGC keys and
entering a specific catalog number; the START FIND option to
logically find a custom-tailored list of objects in organized strips of
the sky; or scanning the sky and have the Object Library tell you
what is in the field of view of the eyepiece by using the FIELD
option. Below is a description of the four OBJECT LIBRARY
menu files and file options.
To access the OBJECT LIBRARY menu file, move the LCD arrow
to the OBJECT LIBRARY display by pressing the PREV or NEXT
key while in the TELESCOPE/OBJECT LIBRARY mode and
press the ENTER key. Any of the four menu selections within the
OBJECT LIBRARY may be accessed by moving the LCD arrow
to the desired menu selection (using the PREV or NEXT keys)
and following these procedures:
1) OBJECT INFO
Press the ENTER key to read the type, brightness, size, and
visual quality of a chosen object. Press ENTER again to read the
R.A. and Dec coordinates. Press ENTER once more to
determine how far off the telescope is pointing from the chosen
object. The distance from the object is represented by a series
of LCD bars (each bar represents 10 degrees.) As the telescope
moves closer to the target object, the number of visible bars
decrease. When the telescope is pointing at the selected object,
all the bars disappear. The object information can also be
accessed at any time by entering the object's library number
- 15 using the M, STAR, or CNGC keys, and pressing the ENTER key.
Press MODE to exit to the main menu file.
RA = 12:27.2*
DEC = +13'03
2) START FIND
The START FIND option utilizes the CNGC objects within the
Object Library and begins a logical search beginning where ever
the telescope is positioned when activated. To cover the entire
visible sky it will make 31 strip divisions about 12 degrees wide,
moving from West to East, from the North Pole to the South Pole,
then South to North. Once it has found all of the deep sky
objects, it will repeat its sequence until new objects are visible.
Press the ENTER key and the keypad display will show the first
object in its finding sequence. This first object is selected by the
CDS, based on where the instrument is pointing in the sky when
you entered START FIND. To point the CDS to the object
displayed, press the GO TO key. The CDS will slew to the object.
While in the START FIND option, you can either choose the next
object in line or skip it as you wish. In order to find the next object
in sequence, press the NEXT key. The display will read the new
CNGC object. If you do not wish to view this object, the object
may be skipped by pressing NEXT. If you wish to return to a
previously viewed object, press the PREV key until the desired
catalog number is displayed. Then, press the GO TO key. If any
parameters have been set within the PARAMETERS option, the
CDS will find only those objects within the chosen confines.
Display 26
Press ENTER once more to see how far your telescope needs to
be moved to acquire the object. The display will show LED bars,
each bar represents ten degrees of movement as shown in
Display 27:
■■■■
■
Display 27
If the object is already centered in the telescope, Display 27 will
be blank.
To review any of the data of an object, continue to press the
ENTER button until the desired field appears. You can use the
above commands at any time that you have an object entered in
the Keypad, while directly entering in specific objects by pressing
the M, STAR, or CNGC keys, in the START FIND menu
selection, the OBJECT INFORMATION menu selection, or the
FIELD menu selection.
a) Coordinate Matching Feature
4) PARAMETERS
If the object is not well centered in the eyepiece after executing a
GO TO (due to poor leveling, improper time input, or errors in site
location), center the object; then press and hold the ENTER key
until the display reads “Coordinates Matched.” This feature
"synchronizes" or updates the CDS's information for an area of
the sky, so that the next object (if the leveling, time input, or site
location information is not corrected) will be better centered.
To set observing parameters (e.g., the CDS will only
GO TO objects of a certain type, brightness, etc.), press ENTER
to enter the Parameters Menu. There are eight parameter
options which can be reviewed using the PREV or NEXT key. To
edit one of the options, move the arrow to the desired option and
press and hold the ENTER key until a double beep is heard. A
blinking cursor appears (except in the BETTER option). Where
numerical values are required, type them in using the Keypad. If
a mistake is made, move the cursor backward using the "W" key,
then re-enter the data. To exit to the main option menu, press the
ENTER key once again. A description of the eight options and
how to set them is below:
To exit the START FIND menu selection (and cease its operation)
and return to the main menu, press the MODE key.
3) FIELD
Press the ENTER key to identify objects in the field of view of the
telescope. The CDS will display the object centered in the
eyepiece field, and how many other NGC objects are in the field
at the same time (defined by the RADIUS parameter setting) as
shown in Display 24:
Objects: 5
Center: CNGC 4438
Display 24
Press the ENTER button to reveal information about the object
as shown in Display 25:
CNGC 4438 VG GAL
MAG 10.1 SZ 9.3'
Display 25
Display 25 is interpreted; Computerized New General Catalog
#4438, Very Good, Galaxy, Magnitude 10.1, Size (in arc minutes)
9.3'. Press ENTER again to read the coordinate location of the
object (notice the * legend next to R.A. coordinate number,
indicating the catalog coordinates of the object, not necessarily
where the telescope is pointing) as shown in Display 26:
a) TYPE GPDCO
This option allows a user to select the type of CNGC objects to
be located. The symbols GPDCO represent:
Object Symbol
G
P
D
C
O
Symbol Description
Galaxies
Planetary Nebulae
Diffuse Nebulae
Globular Star Clusters
Open Star Clusters
Initially, the blinking cursor appears over the G symbol. If you
decide not to look for galaxies, press the NEXT key and the
symbol will change from an upper case letter (G) to a lower case
letter (g), to deselect the GALAXIES category. If you wish to
leave GALAXIES selected, then move the blinking cursor over to
one of the other category symbols by pressing the "W" or "E" key
on the Keypad. Deselect any undesired categories.
To recall a category symbol, move the blinking cursor over the
symbol and press the PREV key, changing the letter to
uppercase. After your selections are made, press ENTER.
b) BETTER
The BETTER option allows you to define the visual object quality
range. At power up, the range is set at the bottom of the scale on
VP. When using the START FIND menu selection, The CDS
- 16 selects all objects from very poor through super — what could be
considered an “ALL” setting. The object quality symbols are:
Quality Symbol
SU
EX
VG
G
FR
PR
VP
Symbol Description
Super
Excellent
Very Good
Good
Fair
Poor
Very Poor
For example: to define the visual object quality range to very
good and better, press the ENTER key until the symbol VG is
displayed. From the VP setting to VG requires three ENTER key
presses. The CDS will now select objects that look Very Good
through Super.
c) HIGHER
The Higher option sets the horizon setting for the telescope. At
power up, the setting is 00 degrees, which assumes the CDS
system has an unobstructed, line-of-site view to the horizon in
every direction. If, however, there are things obstructing a level
horizon, or if the sky quality is poor due to haze or light pollution,
an artificial horizon level may be set to avoid the "undesirable"
area.
To roughly judge how many degrees of the sky is "undesirable"
for viewing, or is being obstructed, hold your fist at arm’s length
and attempt to cover the obstruction with your fist. Each fist
diameter is approximately 5 degrees. So, if a tree is three fists
high, enter a setting of 15 degrees in the HIGHER setting. Once
the setting has been entered using the keypad, press ENTER.
d) LARGER
The LARGER option allows an observer to set the lower
apparent size limit of the objects to be observed. At power up the
LARGER option is set to 000' (arc minutes). To decide what size
limits to impose, it helps to have a clear understanding of exactly
what an arc minute of sky is. A good example is the apparent
size of the Moon, which could be expressed as 1/2 of a degree,
30 arc minutes, or 1800 arc seconds. Each arc minute is 60 arc
seconds, and there are 60 arc minutes for each degree of sky.
Some beginning observers have a tough time discerning objects
less than about 1 arc minute in size unless it is a double star or
a planet. Astrophotographers and those involved with CCD
imaging may want to set a higher value based on desired image
scale coverage that would be most impressive with different films
or types of CCD cameras. Enter the new value in arc minutes
using the Keypad, then press ENTER.
e) SMALLER
The SMALLER option is the upper size object limit. At power up
the SMALLER setting is 200' arc minutes or 3.33 degrees. This
setting is high enough to cover the largest objects in the OBJECT
LIBRARY. You may want to lower the value because of true fieldof-view limitations of a particular eyepiece (see the RADIUS
parameter option for calculating true field).
Other reasons for limiting the SMALLER value is for
astrophotographic or CCD imaging requirements where a user
does not want an object to exceed the imaging area of the film or
the CCD chip.
f) BRIGHTER
The lower brightness limits based on stellar magnitude can be
limited in the BRIGHTER option. At power up, the magnitude
value is set to a very faint level of +20.0.
A user may wish to adjust the BRIGHTER (magnitude) level to a
brighter value, perhaps the limiting visual magnitude of the
telescope being used, (approximately 14.0 for an 7" and 12.0 for
a 4"). Sky conditions also greatly affect the limiting magnitude
due to atmospheric haze, high clouds, light pollution, or
combinations thereof.
g) FAINTER
The upper level of brightness may be adjusted with the FAINTER
option, although there are few applications for limiting the CDS to
a lower value.
h) RADIUS
The RADIUS value sets the boundaries of what and how many
objects the CDS recognizes within a given eyepiece while in the
FIELD menu selection. At power up the RADIUS option is set to
15 arc minutes, the radius of 1/2 a degree (30 arc minutes).
To calculate the true field of an eyepiece in the telescope, first
divide the focal length of the telescope (e.g. 1140mm for an 5"
127ED) by the focal length of the eyepiece (for example, a 26mm
Super Plössl eyepiece: 1140 divided by 26 equals 44X
magnification). Then, find the apparent field of the eyepiece
(which is 52 degrees for the 26mm Super Plössl) and divide it by
the magnification (52 divided by 44 equals .1.18 degrees. To
convert degrees to arc minutes, multiply the amount by 60,
which equals 70.8 arc minutes.
To get the radius of the true field of view, divide the true field
by 2. In the case of the above equation, 70.8 arc minutes divided
by 2 equals 35.4 arc minutes.
2. MODE TWO: COORDINATES/GO TO
Mode Two allows a user to see where the CDS is pointing in two
celestial coordinate formats, either Right Ascension and
Declination or Altazimuth. Also in this mode it is possible to enter
new Right Ascension and Declination coordinates for any sky
position, perhaps to locate objects not in the CDS library (e.g.,
comets or asteroids) and have the telescope slew to the new
coordinates.
A. Coordinates Menu Option
This option displays the R.A. and DEC coordinates of where the
telescope is pointing. If the CDS is moved using the "N", "S", "W"
or "E" keys, the coordinate display immediately updates the new
position in Right Ascension and Declination.
Pressing ENTER displays the Altazimuth coordinates (ALT = and
AZ =). This data is for general information only. With the ALT AZ
information displayed, pressing the GO TO key will not move the
telescope. Return to the R.A. and DEC coordinates by pressing
the ENTER key again.
The R.A. coordinates are displayed in hours, minutes, and
seconds. The DEC coordinates are displayed in degrees,
minutes and seconds. The "+" represents North Declination and
"-" represents South Declination. See Display 28:
RA = 02:45.54
DEC = +22°54:02
Display 28
B. GO TO Menu Option
The GO TO option allows a user to enter Right Ascension and
Declination coordinates of any object in the sky. With this ability,
- 17 the CDS knows no bounds — any celestial object, including
comets, asteroids, etc., are easily found, provided accurate
coordinate data has been entered.
To enter a new pointing position in Right Ascension and
Declination, press and hold the GO TO key until a double beep
is heard. A blinking cursor appears over the R.A. coordinate
numbers. Using the numbers on the keypad, type in the new
Right Ascension coordinate numbers. Then, press the ENTER
key. The blinking cursor is now over the DEC coordinate
numbers. Enter the new Declination coordinate numbers, then
press the ENTER key. At this point the CDS slews to the new
coordinate position.
When it is necessary to enter a negative Declination setting,
move the blinking cursor over the + symbol with the W key and
then press the NEXT key to get the - (minus) symbol, then move
the blinking cursor to the first number with the E key and enter
the new coordinate numbers. If there is are already at a minus
(-) Declination setting, follow the same instructions as above but
press the PREV key instead to get the + symbol.
3. MODE THREE: CLOCK/CALENDAR
The continuously operating clock and calendar is the heart of the
CDS. At power up, the telescope’s accurate sidereal clock
automatically performs orbital calculations of the planets, and
figures the correct stellar precession for the CDS's superior
pointing ability.
The CDS comes with a long-life lithium battery back-up, making
it unnecessary to enter the local time and date every time the
system is powered up, thus enhancing the user friendly aspects
of the instrument.
To set the local time and date and to enter the correct GMT
offset, refer to page 6, Entering the Local Time and Date.
The long-life lithium battery (Panasonic CR2032 3 volt or
Duracell DL2032B) is stored behind the #1697 Control Panel,
Fig. 5. See Appendix E (page 50) for battery replacement
information.
4. MODE FOUR: TIMER/ FREQ
A. TIMER Option
The TIMER option is designed for accurately timing different
observing or imaging tasks for up to twelve hours. Counting
down to zero, in the hours, minutes, and seconds format, the
CDS beeps to notify an observer that the time is up.
To set the TIMER, move the LCD arrow to TIMER= 00:00:00.
Then press and hold the ENTER key to get the double beep tone
and the blinking cursor. Enter the number of hours, minutes, and
seconds that you require. If it is necessary to correct an error in
entry, use the "E" and "W" keys to move the blinking cursor and
then type in the correct information. After entry, press the
ENTER key again. When you are ready to start the count-down,
press the ENTER key once more. To pause the count-down
press ENTER again, and then again to resume.
If an automatic 12 hour count-down is desired, press, but do not
hold, the ENTER key. Then press ENTER to begin the countdown.
from 55.0 Hz to 65.0 Hz. With this option, it is possible to match
virtually every celestial motion in the sky, including the King rate
(for tracking objects within 20 degrees of the horizon). Some
popular drive rate settings are:
Frequency Rate
60.1 Hz Q
Description
Sidereal rate;
Quartz setting
Notes
Default rate at power
up. Gives sidereal
frequency accuracy to
+/-.005%, also Smart
Drive training rate;
Best for most
astrophotography.
60.0 Hz
Solar and
planetary rate
Average rate for
tracking planets;
actual rates vary due
to retrogrades,
oppositions, etc.
57.9 Hz
Lunar rate
Best rate for tracking
the Moon.
Note: It is best to train the Smart Drive in the 60.1 Hz Q setting
(see SMART menu file on page 12). The Smart Drive gives
periodic error corrections in all of the other frequency settings.
There are three menu file options in the FREQ option. To view or
set the options, move the LCD arrow to FREQ= and press the
ENTER key. At power up, the FREQ= default is the 60.1Hz Q
setting. The quartz rate is precisely fixed and cannot be altered.
To choose a rate other than the quartz setting, press the ENTER
key to see 60.1 M (Display 29) and then again to see 60.1 M with
the up and down LCD arrow (Display 30). These two options can
adjust the tracking speeds. The adjustment techniques are
described below:
FREQ = 60.1 M
Display 29
Display 29 shows the manual rate menu file option that can be
adjusted by pressing and holding the ENTER key to get the
double beep tone and the blinking cursor. Type in the new rate,
then when finished, press the ENTER key again.
FREQ = 60.1M ↕
Display 30
Display 30 shows the menu file option allows you to step the
drive tracking frequency setting in tenths of a hertz, by using the
PREV and NEXT (up and down arrow) keys. This is a convenient
feature if you are trying to match the precise speed of a planet,
comet, or any other non-stellar object. To exit this option, press
the MODE key.
5. MODE FIVE: KEYPAD OFF/ BRIGHTNESS ADJUST
In order to see very faint objects, it is sometimes necessary to
either dim or completely turn off the Keypad red LED
backlighting. To do so, press the MODE button until the display
goes blank. This is the OFF option.
B. FREQ Option
The FREQ (Frequency) option allows a user to digitally adjust the
tracking speeds (not slew speeds) of the CDS in tenths of a hertz
To set the Keypad brightness, press the ENTER button and
adjust the brightness to your satisfaction with the PREV and
NEXT keys. To exit, press the MODE key.
- 18 Note: The backlighting is done by edge lighting a plastic light bar
underneath the Keypad. Four LED’s are used and do not give a
perfectly even backlighting of the keys as keys closer to a LED
will be a little brighter than those keys further away.
OPTIONAL ACCESSORIES
An assortment of professional Meade accessories is available to
enhance the performance of the Meade LXD Equatorial Mount
and #1697 Computer Drive System.
#814 Polar Alignment Finder
This borescope device facilitates quick,
precise polar alignment of the telescope. An
internal reticle contains an etched clock-like
scale while a separate Polar Reference
Circle shows the correct position of the North
Star on the Finder's reticle scale at any time
and day of the year.
Meade CCD Autoguider/Imagers, including:
Pictor 201XT
With the Pictor 201XT in place on your
telescope, tedious photographic guiding
is a thing of the past. Now you can take
long
exposure
astrophotographs,
knowing that the telescope will precisely track the object being
photographed, even during the longest exposures.
Pictor 208XT
The Pictor 208XT CCD Autoguider/
Imager produces fine, high-resolution 8bit images of the Moon and planets in
seconds on your computer screen. Two
or three minutes is all that is required to
capture an image of any one of thousands of deep-space
objects.
Pictor 216XT
The Pictor 216XT enables advanced 16
bit imaging and is by far the finest
autoguider/imager ever made available
for its cost.
EPOCH 2000sk Sky Software
Epoch 2000sk is the most powerful, most
realistic sky software ever made available,
allowing users to remotely control their
telescope from a PC. Also, click on any one
of 281,000 database objects displayed on a
starfield to see the object's name, coordinates, magnitude,
object type and description. Other features allow a user to
zoom-in on telescope fields smaller than one arc second, locate
planets to a precision of 0.1 arc seconds, print professionalquality star charts in either black and white or color and much
more.
EPOCH 2000ip Imaging Software
Epoch 2000ip is an image processing software
that includes virtually every technique available
for the professional-level enhancement of your
CCD images including: advanced image
scaling; enhanced convolution functions;
unsharp masking; image blinking and much more. Available on
3 1/2" disks or CD-ROM, fully compatible with Windows 95.
Illuminated Reticle Eyepieces
Meade Illuminated Reticle Eyepieces are used for precise
centering of stars in the telescope's field of view to aid in the CDS
alignment process. Two optical designs are available: Series
4000 Plössl 9mm or Modified Achromatic 12mm.
#1207 Electric Focuser
Meade Electric Focusers are
uniquely designed to yield
extremely
smooth,
precise
microfocusing of the image,
without disabling the manual
focus knob, which may be used for rapid coarse focusing. The
#1207 Electric Focuser plugs directly into the CDS control panel.
Pictor 416XT
The Meade Pictor 416XT permits
professional-level imaging capability
for the amateur astronomer. The
Pictor 416XT electronic camera is
capable of producing with amateur
telescopes, images of the Moon,
planets, and deep-space objects that match or exceed the
photographic images obtained with many observatory
telescopes.
Pictor 1616XT
The Meade Pictor 1616XT imaging system utilizes one of the
largest microchips currently in commercial production. The
1616XT has the same pixel density, ultra low dark current (less
than one electron per 5 seconds) and ultra low readout noise
(less than 15 electrons rms) as the Pictor 416XT, but with four
times the pixel quantity and chip area. This permits professionalquality imaging of very large sky areas.
MEADE CUSTOMER SERVICE
If you have a question concerning your Meade #1697 Computer
Drive System, call Meade Instruments Customer Service
Department at the phone number listed below. Customer
Service hours are 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM, Pacific Time, Monday
through Friday.
Meade General Catalog
For your free copy of the Meade General Catalog write, call, or
fax Meade Instruments:
Meade Instruments Corporation
6001 Oak Canyon
Irvine, CA 92620-4205
Phone: (949) 451-1450
Fax: (949) 451-1460
- 19 -
APPENDIX A: PRECISE POLAR ALIGNMENT
Precise polar alignment is essential for long-exposure astrophotography (typically defined as photo-exposures of 10 minutes or longer).
Fewer tracking corrections are required during the duration of the exposure when the telescope is precisely polar aligned.
Precise polar alignment requires the use of a crosshair eyepiece — such as the Meade Illuminated Reticle Eyepiece — and a 2x Barlow
lens for increased magnification.
The method for precise polar alignment — commonly referred to as the “drift” method — is as follows:
1. Obtain a rough polar alignment as described in the telescope's instruction manual. Once approximate alignment has been
accomplished, insert the 2x Barlow lens and the illuminated reticle eyepiece into the telescope’s eyepiece holder.
2.
With the motor drive running, point the telescope at a moderately bright star near where the meridian (the north-south line passing
through your local zenith) and the celestial equator intersect. For best results, the star should be located within +/–30 minutes in
R.A. of the meridian and within +/–5° in Dec of the celestial equator. Pointing the telescope at a star that is straight up, and then
moving the telescope in Dec to read 0° Dec, will point the telescope to the correct position.
3.
Disregarding the drift in R.A., note the star’s drift in Declination:
a. If the star drifts South, the telescope’s polar axis is pointing too far East (Fig. 10).
b. If the star drifts North, the telescope’s polar axis is pointing too far West (Fig. 11).
Polaris
Fig. 10: Telescope aligned too far East.
4.
5.
★
★
Fig. 11: Telescope aligned too far West.
Use the Azimuth Control knob to adjust the LXD Equatorial mount in azimuth, so there is little or no north-south drift by the star.
Note: Many advanced astrophotographers prefer a slight, steady drift in Declination so the Dec gear remains under a constant load.
A slight load on the gear prevents gear lash that normally occurs when changing directions. In this way, a slight "misalignment" is
actually beneficial.
Next, point the telescope at another moderately bright star near the Eastern horizon, but still near the celestial equator. For best
results, the star should be about 20° or 30° above the Eastern horizon and within +/–5° of the celestial equator (i.e., still at about
0° Dec). Once again, note the star’s drift in Declination:
a. If the star drifts South, the telescope's polar axis is pointing too low (Fig. 12).
b. If the star drifts North, the telescope's polar axis is pointing too high (Fig. 13).
Polaris
★
Polaris
Fig. 12: Telescope aligned too far low.
6.
Polaris
★
Fig. 13: Telescope aligned too high.
Use the latitude adjustment knob on the LXD Equatorial Mount to change the latitude angle based on your observations above.
Again, track the star for a period of time to verify that Declination drift has ceased.
After completing these procedures your telescope is precisely polar aligned, minimizing the need for tracking corrections during longexposure astrophotography.