Mobile to Semi-Perm

CCD cameras (CMOS/CCD), DSLRs, telescope mounts, focusers, autoguiders, domes, Roll off roofs, etc..
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rottielover
Posts: 128
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2018 8:22 pm
Location: Missouri, USA
Contact:

Mon Aug 26, 2019 8:12 am

Backstory, questions below:
I don't get to travel with my mobile rig as much as I would like. I currently have it setup on a rolling wooden platform which has shopping cart wheels on it that lock. I have been rolling it (completely setup) from my garage to the end of the driveway, polar aligning, and then either controlling it from my desktop PC inside the house or sitting outside with it at a folding table (concerned about theft).

I have a backyard concrete pad where the mount would be shielded from view of the streets, however it would also limit my open sky to basically the zenith and about 45 degrees and above in the south, but the advantage is that I would feel more comfortable with the rig setup there, because you could not see it from driving down the two streets (corner lot).

There are some other issues with that location though, one being the neighbor behind me has unusually bright porch lights and a light post, even thought I would be pointed away, I suspect I might see a gradient from those.

Still the potential for getting data while I sleep is near irresistible, especially with the ability to setup Prism with a target list and have Automatic Observations gather that data for me and I know I won't have to worry about it!

Questions:

Setting up mount parking. I'm using an Orion Atlas with EQMOD. Normally I manually park the mount using EQMOD's Park Function. Prism has it's own parking function but I don't think I have it setup correctly because it doesn't appear to command EQMOD to execute a park, rather it slews to a location and then stops tracking. Is there a way to get Prism to execute the EQMOD Park? (I believe this is needed because if I don't park the mount via EQMOD I will have to re-record PEC each time I move the mount?

I have never polar aligned my mount without being able to see Polaris. I'm hoping to use Prism's alignment methods, I have to study up on these. Any tips from the group here about polar alignment without a clear view to the north?

I'm planning to setup a new horizon file, using the methods I outlined here in another post, as I understand it Auto observations will take that custom horizon into account when choosing the targets to image, correct?

This should be a fun little experiment. My local forecast is calling for 2 clear nights this week, Wednesday and Thursday nights, which also happens to be new moon. If I can pull this off, I'll think I will be able to get approx 4 hours integration time each on 2 different targets if I set things up right. More to follow as I am I able to do planning...
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