Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 10 hours 55 minutes ago

I may get a chance to test it tomorrow Night but the humidity and heat are challenging right now. I tried out a new battery holder and caused a nice thunderstorm...then emptied over an inch of water from the "closed" box today. No damage noted so far - batteries are mostly sealed, but the charger got pretty wet. It's been set aside to dry and I'm going to take it to work and put it in our parts dryer. The mount was covered but you can bet I'll be looking for more wet spots before powering.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. yesterday

I see! I'm more sure than ever we have parallel operations going on. I'm going to hold off a bit but weather permitting I'll try that in my mega when I get the chance.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. yesterday

Beta was synced with Alpha when I updated last week when I did the new driver install but i'm sure about the alignment. I feel like I missed something. Is there a thread I should be following at Onstep.io for indi/onstep interactions?

I'll update to latest OnStep if needed. It was good to get back to good views at any rate. Planetary is for the birds.(falcon heavy :P)

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 days ago

I got a chance to try a test this evening. With no OnStep(mega) changes I ran the new driver and tried to align. I'm not sure what is going on so i'll just relate my experience.
I hit align, did a goto to Vega just about at meridian and straight up. Then I fiddled with focus for a long time after just put the thing back together it was too far in and ran out of tracks...fixed that and then ran the solver. It solved and claimed nearby and synced to that position. so I issued a slew to vega from current plotted position expecting it to go there. Instead it did a meridian flip..okay it was close to time anyway I thought. So I decided to just do it again except this time I hit solve and slew in the plate solver... and it went home to flip again...but it already had to it tested the belts badly. Good thing I moved the mount out front where I could run and release the clutches.
I've got time to retry from scratch one more go. I hand aimed it near vega and am going to try to solve and sync again. Meanwhile the system thinks it went home for no apparent reason. I manually synced it back to vega for easier solution. I moved it until I found a small cluster and solved again and this time it worked. So I moved to vega, synced and hit the issue align button and went looking for another star. When I slewed to deneb the mount decided to flip again and wouldn't you know it... the thing thought it was west when it was east and so wrecked the alignment and tested the belts again. Now it's personal. I reset everything for a clean try. --hit cold start and init home..and it started slewing for home. That's wrong, It should sync to home and reset the program. I hit stop and only init home and it synced. A Problem may be in the cold start button routine. After this the mount claims deneb is below the angle limit in red and won't slew.. repowering.

Then I'm going to try for a milky way shot or two with the k-50 and a 35mm lens i've been having daytime fun with.

I also found a possible bug in the Ekos focus module that now does not return to the correct previous setpoint on auto focus failure. I am using moonlite focus rather than onstep. I'll report it at master git.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 4 days ago

Excellent work James! I can't wait to try this. The nights are so short that testing that alignment is about all I'll get to do. I'm also using an arduino mega and on the new updated beta code (which was parallel to alpha when I did it). Is there anything I need to uncomment or add to enable tuning?

This will give me the reason I've been looking for to put the newt back together and stop chasing darkness around with an sct at f30 trying to catch Jupiter between the trees.
@azwing : how often are you pulling from master? I recently found a nasty bug that was effecting my zwo cameras and Knro fixed it in nightly. I just want to be sure it's made it to your branch before updating. -- I bet there's a way to tell in git :ponder:

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 weeks ago

Integrating that into a scripted 3 star routine would be fantastic! Sit back and watch the mount tune itself. 8-)

Extra long project version..hopefully not overcooked by all my editing:
I'm in planetary mode right now and can't see stars (4500mm f30!) but my usual dso/eaa/ap setup(asi178mm/150mm f4 newt) sees everything, and after installing a ton of Astrometry.com data files I can report good service from the plate solving and alignment feature. Sure beats trying to get lined up on Jupiter with a misaligned guide camera and a noisy dark main one.
I may be playing with PEC with my next build. I'm a bit confused with the way they are using it though. I would go with a high resolution encoder and hit the error reset more often than once a shaft revolution instead of using the Z shaft index. I'll have to study the code and find some online info when I get into it. I found a couple of the little red lion shaft encoders to try, and a super 24bit absolute encoder I rescued from the scrap pile at work which got me interested in trying it.
My current project has badly outgrown its little control box and I'm making something bigger to house things. Bigger power supply requirements for dew heaters, tec cooling(a water pump!?) etc. and 4amp capable stepper controllers(hopefully better than drv8825's) caused the latest upgrade cycle.
Hope you guys are well and not getting cooked in all this heat. :)

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'ASI gain vs. focus module' in the forum. 3 weeks ago

Oh hey that was a real bug this time. :) So many of them turn out do be self inflicted I always assume my end first. Thanks for looking at it and I'm glad you could reproduce the problem so easily. I'll give it a go next chance I get.

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Jasem Mutlaq thanked Ray Wells in topic ASI gain vs. focus module 3 weeks ago
Ray Wells created a new topic ' any DIY Indi compatible thermoelectric cooler controllers?' in the forum. 3 weeks ago

I'm in the research stage of building a thermo-electric cooler for use with uncooled ZWO cameras.
I can make a standalone tec system pretty easily, but since I'm going to make a self tuning arduino setup, it would be cool to be able to track/set it in ekos the way you can with cooled cameras.
Any arduino driven indi compatible tec controllers out there I could get some code from?
any usb protocol info would also be helpful.
:)

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Ray Wells created a new topic ' ASI gain vs. focus module' in the forum. 4 weeks ago

I recently somehow managed to get my asi178 (and I think the asi120 as well) stuck in a mode that has the gain grayed out in the ekos focus module. Has anyone else encountered this and or how to fix it?
Toggling the automatic gain check box doesn't help, or report a change. I can change the gain in indi control panel but it doesn't update the chage in ekos unless I reselect the camera in the drop down.

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Ray Wells thanked Jasem Mutlaq in topic Announcing Ekos Live 4 weeks ago
Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 1 month ago

Finally got around to some testing and have clear skies too! Initial build and run looks good so far.
The frequency adjust buttons show and take commands. This is good. I'll know if it works for sure as soon as I get focused and tracking. Since it updates the firmware I think it will hold across boots, but I can't remember for sure. i'll try to test that at some point- probably at shutdown. As for feedback of frequency, there is a line there(tracking frequency - freq) that seems to be getting it from firmware. If we update/call that line when the +- buttons are used I think it should show the change.
buy that man a beer! The pesky 60.1 limit is gone! My worn out worm gears thank you! I'll edit this and add anything I find as I go.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 1 month ago

Haven't had a chance to try that yet. Summer nights are so short. I'll wait till I get a look to see how it's going. No promises but i'm hoping the storms cleared things enough for me to get an hour before bed to try for the Jupiter with GRS showing. I'll start earlier and update the drivers in the Odroid(currently in the field but unplugged) from Azwing's git.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 months ago

Something for the todo list:
It would be nice to have buttons for these like the phone app has.

// :T+# Master sidereal clock faster by 0.1 Hertz (I use a fifth of the LX200 standard, stored in EEPROM)
// :T-# Master sidereal clock slower by 0.1 Hertz (stored in EEPROM)
// :TR# Master sidereal clock reset (to calculated sidereal rate, stored in EEPROM)

I moved the mount out front to protect it from a student driver. :P A side effect is having a blue tooth connection at my desk, which resulted in finding this nice toy. No two gear sets are exactly alike, especially considering the DIY aspect of the driver, and mine is no exception. Great for fine tuning unguided tracking speed.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 months ago

I think both adding the conditional in OnStep and in the init and tab setup in the driver both make perfect sense. OnStep needs to reply with usable info if the user isn't going to add the focuser(such as my case) so that drivers, ascom or indi for instance can decide if they need to list it. Serial polling is a fixed rate so it wouldn't normally have an effect on timing or parsing of commands unless it happened too fast to read them all in.
...which reminds me, does anyone know where we can get info on this new polling timer that has appeared in the latest ekos release? I've left it alone for the most part but if it's intended to throttle calls it might need to be faster with smaller intervals per tab..but if it is as I described above, it may just need to be long enough to ensure busy command requests don't get truncated. I guess the question is, could more performance or stability result from tweaking?

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 months ago

@Azwing Yep! After I got that crazy buffer problem fixed I was able to just "do" astronomy for a while, mostly fiddling with all my toys and trying to come up with a flat light train for the 6 inch f4 newt. I dislike digging. I dug holes for some tomatoes last week and threw my shoulder out hitting roots with a maddock.
That pier looks great! You might check out the facebook group I'm in called "Home observatories and DIY projects(guess which one I am :P) that has a ton of good observatory info and nice and informative community. We'd love to see how things go on that project. Tell em Ray sent you so they'll know you mean business! ;)
I also made a nifty guidescope from parts costing me 0$ I'm pretty stoked about and got my focuser issues sorted too. Other than that it's just been hardware issues for the last bit, a broken belt tensioner, Declination lash, a loose pulley and a stripped worm adjustment bolt to name a few show stoppers during the brief clear period we had.
The tapping in the cg4 was apparently done by overworked 12yr old chinese girls as they are all loose in the threads from wobbly bit work. I've had to retap a couple already and should have just done them all but space and time constraints...

I may eventually try the newer onstep code to get back on the testing train, but I'm considering doing a more stable fork for those of us already built and working with older code and the Arduino Mega. Alternately, I may go talk to Howard Dutton and try to test for them to help keep the mega sections viable as the teensy code evolves as I'm pretty sure the issues I found were related to this. I am enjoying the break from the madness though. :D

One thing to keep an eye out for: I've not been able to verify this bug due to the belt issues etc. but there may be a bug in the "home" routine when in the southwest quadrant, I've found it had gone inverted and tried to circle under. It could have been a crashed or unstable situation so I've not got any real data, just wanted to get it out there in case somebody else catches it doing this.

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Ray Wells replied to the topic 'Driver OnStep (LX200 like) for INDI' in the forum. 2 months ago

The QHY could be using up all your USB bandwidth, especially after a lockup. Sometimes a setting will result in an error and cause the driver to get stupid. Once the ASI camera driver goes unstable for whatever reason (drive full is one) indiserver does some very strange things and I have to restart it using SSH to the Odroid, so the qhy code using the same backbone may have done the same to you.

My Mega has been doing a pretty good job of keeping up with things lately, but again, I'm on older code now. not sure this helps but I figured it couldn't hurt to have some comparison data. I haven't updated the indi driver in a week or two as I promised myself I'd just do astronomy for a while once I got things going well enough. I backed up the working version so I should be able to test latest before you guys issue a pull next go if you like, unless aliens move into a parking orbit or I have that rare 4/5 stable clear night. I'm on Beta still and attempts to switch to the newer code have gone poorly, but I've not had any lag issues beyond the usual self induced problems of connecting to the wrong port and crashing the driver or having to disconnect to remove a camera while tweaking the light train, thereby crashing the whole works on reconnect...and other "normal" stuff like that.
I noticed a recent addition of a polling system and I haven't seen any docs on it yet. That might be something to check on the Indi side, And also the ZWO cameras(despite being usb3 units) can cause lag problems throughout the system when run on usb2 ports - not sure if the QHY suffers the same issues but worth mentioning. I keep them both(178mm/120c-s) throttled to 40 even on the Odroid's usb3 ports which seems to avoid trouble pretty well and is more than enough for DSO long exposure anyway as even framing shots are 2-3 seconds.
37mb! Some parsing may be needed. yikes!

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