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INDI Library v2.0.7 is Released (01 Apr 2024)

Bi-monthly release with minor bug fixes and improvements

Ekos and inconsistent mount operation (AM3)

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I'm new to Kstars and Ekos. I've run a few sessions over the past few weeks with varying degrees of success. However, after yet another night of frustratingly inconsistent behavior between Kstars/Ekos and the ZWO AM3 mount I wanted to see if I was missing something.

The mount and camera (Nikon dslr) seem to connect ok initially. However, the mount doesn't always respond to commands and I don't know why. Sometimes it will do nothing. Often, it will beep in response to park and unpark commands, but then won't slew to a target selected in Kstars or Ekos. The console notes to unpark the mount before sending commands. Sometimes it is true that I didn't unpark it, but other times it says it is unparked yet won't move. If I click "disconnect" in the Ekos 1st tab and then reconnect, sometimes it fixes the problem. Polar alignment sometimes won't slew after the first photo.

Tonight I successfully ran the polar alignment routine, but then the mount wouldn't slew to any target. I tried various combinations of disconnect/reconnect, stopping and starting the INDI driver, and even restarted Kstars. I eventually got it on target only for it to stop responding again. Then when I did get that sorted, it appeared that kstars forgot what it was pointing at and tried to run the telescope into the mount like a pretzel. I had to shut it off to keep it from damaging itself.

Is there a way to set limits in Kstars to keep the telescope from hitting the mount? If so, is there a tutorial somewhere? Honestly, it is aggravating that the mount isn't smart enough to avoid that situation in the first place.

What is up with the inconsistent mount control? Am I missing a step or a setting or something?

What is the effect of disconnecting and reconnecting the mount with and without restarting the INDI server?

Once the polar alignment routine has run, does it matter if the mount disconnected/reconnected and/or the INDI server restarted?
(Side note: the polar alignment routine sometimes stops updating the error amount after may photos.)

I'm using Astroarch on a Raspberry Pi 4. After tonight's failures, I discovered there is an update, so I just ran that and will have to test it at a later time. No idea if that will help.

Thanks.
Sterling
2 months 5 days ago #99033

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Hi Sterling,
welcome to the forum!

The behavior sounds a little bit like power problems of your mount. For further analysis we need your log files.

Cheers
Wolfgang
2 months 5 days ago #99034

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I have an AM5.
For it, it is important before starting anything else, to Home the mount (in INDI control panel).
One time is enough (if you don't restart the computer).
Then, I usually Unpark, Park (my position is to point to Polaris/NCP) and Unpark.
After this the mount slews just fine.

When you do the polar alignment - the mount has to be Unparked.
After the polar alignment is finished the mount is Parked - you need to Unpark it.

HTH
-- Max S
ZWO AM5. RST-135. AZ-GTI. HEQ5. iOptron SkyTracker.
TPO RC6. FRA400. Rokinon 135 and other lenses.
ZWO ASI2600MC. D5500 modified with UVIR clip-in filter.
ZWO ASI120MM Mini x 2. ZWO 30F4 guider. Orion 50mm guider.
ZWO EAF x 3.
2 months 4 days ago #99036

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Thanks. I plug the mount and R Pi4 into the house electrical (mains) system, so there is no battery in this case.

I looked for the logs, but the only one I found was from last month and the file was empty. It looks like Kstars has various log settings. Can you recommend what should be selected? Or are there others in another location?

Sterling
2 months 4 days ago #99057

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I'll be more attentive next time as to what happens when and see if that helps. I know there are definitely times I unparked the mount but it wouldn't respond afterwards. I'll try to find some time to test it out inside (except for the polar alignment, of course).

Thanks.
Sterling
2 months 4 days ago #99058

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