Atik Cameras

Author Topic: Guiding with 16ic  (Read 2896 times)


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Guiding with 16ic
« on: January 17, 2013, 03:26:19 pm »

my name is Bart, i am kind of a novice to the astronomy world, and started in June 2012. The time then my marriage brought me in a period of self reflection, which caused sleepless nights (diplomacy ftw)..... :)... and one night bored with my camera in my hand (Canon 7D) sitting on a bench in the woods at im not that kinda guy :)....the whole madness about astro-photography started. I took an accidental long exposure and noticed stars on my picture. I thought if this was the result of an accident with an exposure time of 25 secs, what if....... So my journey started.

I researched and quickly found out that a normal tripod and camera will only take you so far....After browsing through the tons of data online, i found that some amateur astronomers are actually living in my neighborhood, and i called them.

FFWD>>present day>>
Now i have a second hand Celestron CGEM mount, i know not worlds most user-friendly mount and a 700mm celestron refractor (cheap), i attached an Atik 16ic to it, this is connected with my mount (serial connection to the mounts guide port). And i use a 72ED APO Megrez, still with my unmodded Canon 7D, but with a focal reducer and a ClearSky filter.

Last month in one of Hollands scarce clear sky view nights, i managed to push out my first guided pictures, i shot 15 5min (300sec) pictures, with a deviation of 7-9 pixels per shot, not bad i thought. However two night later i tried to complete my data since i lost 11 pictures due to bad focus, (im a novice! they make mistakes :)). But now i could not calibrate successful, or it actually calibrated, then lost the star in declination N-S. Every time the same issue, when i am shooting north the star migrates south on my screen, and naturally vice versa.
After some weeks of research i stumbled on some blog's where the blame went directly to the mount, my gut feeling said that can't be, not that mounts can't break but mechanical failure would have been caused by something, or would have showed up during the first session a few nights earlier. Still i had no prove to think otherwise as the mount.

Today i spoke with a veteran in the field, he said he encountered the same with two of his 16ic camera's.
To be sure i would like some guidance fro the Atik community.

So two questions remain:
Is this a know issue which can eventually pop up due to drivers outdated or firmware outdated, or any other software related issue.
Or is this more likely, that i dont hope, a mechanical failure of the mount of some sort.

Thank you advance for reading carefully and replying with content, i am not skilled enough and thus am  not capable of filtering the rubbish from the truth, i would like to solve this and not spend more time looking in the wrong direction.

The Netherlands


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Re: Guiding with 16ic
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 12:12:56 pm »
Hi Bart,

Unfortunately; in my case; it was the CGEM... I had to disassemle it and Hypertune it with new bearings and better grease and I had to readjust the play between different components.
Unless you strip your mount:
One thing I propose you to try is to set the guider exposure to let's say somewhere between 1.5 and 2.5 seconds. I think that the mount's motors are not "good" enough to generate short enough pulses.
Another point to check are the autoguide rates in the Mounts Menu.
Periodic Error Control can also be an issue; CCDsoft's PEMPRO is a need to have with some mounts in order to analyse the curve of PE.
How did you forward your guider correction informations; through the guider or the handcontroller port?
Is you laptop uptodate with the latest drivers ( Windoze, Camera, Celestron MC and HC)

IMHO this isn't a camera issue; as I told you; i had the same problem with one the best existing guidecam and a totally renewed PC...

Check the above and tell us what's up...

Hope that you can solve your Prob soon!


CGEM, C11, TS Carbon Apo Triplet 90/600, TS Carbon UNC 254/1250, Atik 383l+, EFW2,
TSOAG, Lodestar....