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INDI Library v1.8.5 Released (19 Apr 2020)

April 2020 release of INDI Library v1.8.5 introduces new drivers while providing fixes and improvements to existing devices and core framework.

Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto?

1 month 3 weeks ago
gubi
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55885
There are grreat tutorials on youtube: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLn_g58xBk...P34aR5midrDXx2TBbFPg
It is about StellarMate, but it is useful for Astroberry too.
The following user(s) said Thank You JonCarleton, CityAstroDude

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1 month 3 weeks ago 1 month 3 weeks ago by JonCarleton.
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55940
I was able to test the updated indi_skywatcherAltAzMount and indi_skywatcherAltAzSimple on my SkyWatcher 250P Dobsonian GOTO yesterday. Both communicated flawlessly for connectivity over the WiFi UDP connection. For my mount, both had some issues with control and operation that I will describe. However, the AltAzSimple seemed to be nearly serviceable if I am correct about the problem.

AltAzMount:
I preferred the features in this, but it didn't point the scope properly. Upon unpark, it would immediately slew 180 degrees clockwise and 25 degrees up. Afterward, slew to any position was low (Alt), sometimes to the point of hitting the mount if not aborted. I could not find the reason for this initial slew nor could I correct the inaccuracy. There was also a mismatch between the SkyWatcher position indicator on the kstars display and actual position. I tried various methods of syncing, but never had reliable results. There was also a bug in the status reporting on the main Ekos panel in kstars. It didn't update properly and frequently showed the scope as parked when it was not and when the Indi panel showed unparked.

AltAzSimple:
This worked "out of the box" more or less as expected. No real surprises. The only issue I had was that the actual scope Alt position seemed to increase slightly with each Goto. For example, moving from Polaris to Capella, Sirius and finally back to Polaris, the scope was actually pointing 5 degrees higher than the target, though the kstars Skywatcher position indicator showed it centered on the star and reported the correct position. I use a very accurate level indicator and a compass with my scope for initial setup and testing and am confident in these results and their repeatability. The increase in Alt was not from a single move, but cumulative, adding a small increase with each move. Azmuth seemed to be reliable through all the positioning.

Is it possible that the motor values for the Alt motor are slightly incorrect for my mount, or is that queried from the mount on startup? For that matter, if you have a solution for the AltAzMount issues I mentioned, I do prefer that version.

Either way, THANK YOU! I am up and running without the evil, despicable, nasty, awful Synscan hand unit. I can live with a few degrees of adjustment and resync if I must.

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1 month 3 weeks ago 1 month 3 weeks ago by T-Studio.
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55942
Try the following with the ALTAZMount driver.
(This driver should have been developed with an API that can be used with all SkyWacherALT-AZMount, but there is a bug that does not fix it at all.)

1. Turn your home position to the North Pole.

2. View mount controller from Ekos mount module

3. Press the park release button on the Ekos mount controller

4. Press the stop button on the Ekos mount controller to stop the mount.
(It's a bug.)

5. Move the lens barrel appropriately in the east direction with the mount controller

6. Perform Solver → Sync with the alignment module

If you perform steps 5 and 6 multiple times, the alignment points will be registered in the alignment subsystem so that they will move correctly.
(In the case of the INDI driver, the home position is North Pole even with the ALTAZ mount.)

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1 month 3 weeks ago
T-Studio
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55943
If you use Sky Watcher SynScan USB instead of a hand controller, you should be able to control it with the SkyWacher ALT-AZ driver.

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1 month 3 weeks ago
gubi
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55945
Most probably the AltAzMount identifies your mount as Virtuoso mount (as it does with my 10" Dob), and the driver expect Virtuoso mounts to be turned on pointing to the Polaris instead of horizontal/north. The AltAzSimple expects the mount to be horizontal/north at the time of connecting the driver.
So if you have connected the AltAzMount driver in a horizontal position (as one would do normally), that cause a big initial error in the mount model in the driver, which explains your inability to correct it with sync operations.
I see reason for both starting from pointing to the Polaris, and pointing horizontal. IMHO there should be an option for that somewhere for that, let the user choose. It does not sound too difficult to implement, maybe I will do that soon.

The AltAzMount driver has a built in procedure for unparking, only the original author of the driver knows why. There is an option on a "motion control" or "mount cotnrol" (I cant check now, as my mount is not with me now), where you can choose the unpark position (North, Shouth, etc...). The default is South, I have no idea, why. If you set that to North, the mount will not turn in azimuth after unpark. It will still raise in Alt, as far as I can tell, this is hard coded in the driver. What I do is I hit "abort motion" immediatelly after unpark, to stop this built in thing. Also there is an option, on the same panel for "silent"/"normal" slew mode. You can choose as you wish, silent mode is slow, normal mode is as fast as the mount can do.

The motor microstep per rew values are read from from the mount, it should be correct. It seems to be correct both for my little Virtuoso mount and the big Dobsonian one too. It is on the "Version" tab, i think.

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1 month 3 weeks ago
gubi
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55946
Most probably the AltAzMount identifies your mount as Virtuoso mount (as it does with my 10" Dob), and the driver expect Virtuoso mounts to be turned on pointing to the Polaris instead of horizontal/north. The AltAzSimple expects the mount to be horizontal/north at the time of connecting the driver.
So if you have connected the AltAzMount driver in a horizontal position (as one would do normally), that cause a big initial error in the mount model in the driver, which explains your inability to correct it with sync operations.
I see reason for both starting from pointing to the Polaris, and pointing horizontal. IMHO there should be an option for that somewhere for that, let the user choose. It does not sound too difficult to implement, maybe I will do that soon.

The AltAzMount driver has a built in procedure for unparking, only the original author of the driver knows why. There is an option on a "motion control" or "mount cotnrol" (I cant check now, as my mount is not with me now), where you can choose the unpark position (North, Shouth, etc...). The default is South, I have no idea, why. If you set that to North, the mount will not turn in azimuth after unpark. It will still raise in Alt, as far as I can tell, this is hard coded in the driver. What I do is I hit "abort motion" immediatelly after unpark, to stop this built in thing. Also there is an option, on the same panel for "silent"/"normal" slew mode. You can choose as you wish, silent mode is slow, normal mode is as fast as the mount can do.

The motor microstep per rew values are read from from the mount, it should be correct. It seems to be correct both for my little Virtuoso mount and the big Dobsonian one too. It is on the "Version" tab, i think.

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1 month 3 weeks ago
JonCarleton
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55961
OK, today I tried some of your suggestions with good success using the SkywatcherAltAzMount driver. I started the scope pointed at Polaris instead of horizontal/North and changed the Park Direction to North from the default South. Only two issues in indi:
1. The scope moves up quite a bit on unpark. No big deal, as it does the GOTO and tracking perfectly after that. I didn't measure how far up it goes, as it is merely an annoyance.
2. For some reason, the Site Management tab wants my Longitude to be 275:00:00 degrees (Kstars Geographic infomation is accurate and correct). The actual value for here is -85:00:00. I have tried changing it, and it stays for the session, but 275 occasionally reappears. I even edited the .xml on the indiserver Raspberry Pi4 that is running the scope, but 275 degrees still appears on startup. Oddly enough, it doesn't seem to affect Tracking or GOTO with the wrong value.

Neither of the above problems would stop me from using SkywatcherAltAzMount over SkywatcherAltAzSimple. Also, I experienced better GOTO accuracy.

The only other issue I noticed was with the Kstars Toggle-on Mount Control Panel. The buttons for left-right-up-down and all diagonals work fine. However, the GOTO heads left (display screenwise). I tried the checkbox for reverse on both axes with no change in the GOTO operation. Both the dropdown menu for focused object->SkywatcherAltAz->GOTO and Toolbar GOTO work correctly, so once again, this is merely an annoyance.

Thank you for all your hard work and assistance in this matter.....now....can you fix my weather? Raining like I need to call Noah here!!

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1 month 3 weeks ago 1 month 3 weeks ago by JonCarleton. Reason: Fat Fingers
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55962
Duplicate post (sorry)

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1 month 3 weeks ago
gubi
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55963
The only reason I can imagine for slewing up the mount upon unpark is that after that one can immediately take a plate solve to sync the mount. It can be made a configurable option though. At least to know about that. For now, it is hard coded into the code.
    // Altitude 3360 points the telescope upwards
    DeltaAlt = CurrentAltAz.alt - 3360;

I have no idea about your coordinate problem.

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1 month 3 weeks ago 1 month 3 weeks ago by gubi.
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55964
I have an idea: maybe your mount wants your Longitude to be 275:00:00 degrees, because it is not raining there...

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1 month 3 weeks ago 1 month 3 weeks ago by JonCarleton.
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55969
Yep...lat 34.7, lon 275....land of clear skies and no light pollution. .....Drat! Now I have to go look that up and see where that really is.

Oh...wait a moment. My tiny little brain just kicked back into gear. 360 - 85 = 275. Could it be that this section has been coded to convert +/- 180 longitudes to a 360 positive value? Too much of a coincidence. If that is the case, a note on the entry screen explaining things would not hurt, especially since it gleefully allows one to replace the 275 with -85 without a single bark before turning it back into a positive number when you aren't looking.

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1 month 3 weeks ago
gubi
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Indiserver WiFi option for Synscan Goto? #55977
I have came to the same conclusion. There is no such thing as "lon 275", after 179 E comes 179 W which is -179 E, so 275E is actually 85 W or simpe -85.

I'm sorry there is no sunshine for you today :(

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