STT8300+FW8GSTT

Discussion in 'STT Series' started by Keith Shank, Sep 27, 2016.

  1. Keith Shank

    Keith Shank Standard User

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2014
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    Hello
    Back in May I purchased a new STT8300+FW8GSTT to augment my old STL11000M. Due to poor planning, I had yet to use it until this week. I have had some interesting problems with the guider. I am using the system with my trusty CCDSoft 5.00.216. The settings are for the main camera - SBIG STT autoguider - CFW.

    The imaging camera connects along with full control of the filterwheel, and seemingly the autoguider camera.

    Images with imaging camera are simple easy (using an observatory mounted instrument). Got the focus done. However the autoguider camera. Just no images seen.

    First thing done is insure the prism is closest in, where the shadow is easily seen on the imager chip. Centered Deneb, moved the star into the shadow and where center may be off the screen. Even images of 20" show no doughnut or light. Moving focus in and out with 20" exposures not even a back ground glow. Except could see something faint along one long axis (top).

    I tried 10 days ago with the near full moon. Could not even get a bit of light.

    Tried again today in twilight. While the main camera overexposed at .011, the guider saw no light at 5". Then later I tried with Deneb, no luck. So.... swapped HDMI cables, no difference.


    So then I shot a 20" image with the main cam, and then I tried my phone's light when exposing the guider cam at 5". Got a very odd result (see attached). A very bright zone at the top, split in two and a faint bar down the screen (image in the back is the 5" with the imager, the autoguide box on front is the guider).

    First, is CCDSoft 5.00.216 being used ok with this system?
    Second, even with a bright light through the prism I am getting nothing. Even massaging the histogram gives nothing. The very bright light seems not to even be seen... Any ideas on what I am doing wrong?

    Looking down the prism I can see the guider ccd chip.

    Any suggestions appreciated!

    (Scope used - TEC140 + AP130 Field Flattener).

    I used the old ST4 when it first came out with a OAG, my STL11000 is an OAG, so got the concept, just seem to be off on this.

    Anyone have this problem? I am sure I am doing something wrong..

    Thanks,
    keith
     
  2. Keith Shank

    Keith Shank Standard User

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    Humm.... JPG file did not upload... Will try again, then if no luck will wait till tomorrow...
     
  3. Doug

    Doug Staff Member

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    If the software has an internal/external guide head selector, make sure it is set to external.

    If not, then make sure the drivers and camera firmware are up to date.
     
  4. Keith Shank

    Keith Shank Standard User

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    Oct 23, 2014
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    Doug
    Thanks for the suggestion. Yes it is set to built in. I brought the camera into my work room and checked it out. Opening the filter cover I see that there is a small shutter. I did not recall hearing a shutter fire on taking the autoguide images. So I put it back together and sure enough no sound. So I shut it down opened it up and using a probe moved the shutter side to side. I then reassembled it and tried again. Now I hear the shutter open/close and am getting light through. So now have been holding the camera at various angles and snapping shots, hearing the shutter open/close. Ok so will try again tonight... I am using the 3.5" plate on the front connected via a SBIG threaded adaptor to a 2.7" extension set that connects to the AP field flattener. So everything is done by threaded extensions from scope to camera. I checked to make sure the thread did not impact the prism mechanics... Now it is picking up light my work room as expected. Think it is mended, hope the shutter issue was something stuck and not a bigger issue...

    Will revert on testing.
    keith
     
  5. Doug

    Doug Staff Member

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    That would do it. I think you were imaging with the nonexistent internal guide chip.
     
  6. Keith Shank

    Keith Shank Standard User

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    Doug,
    Ok after the adjustment the shutter, now all works fine and had zero problems with the guide camera. So it seems there must have been debris or something that seized the guide shutter. Note sw was already configured internal guide chip..

    Happy camper now, got the displacement mapped in the Sky, and focusing is literally a snap.

    Cheers!!
    Keith
     
  7. jliles01

    jliles01 Cyanogen Customer

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2015
    Messages:
    55
    Having the same problem with no light reaching our guide chip. Even used our flat field light box and took a dual chip image. Main chip lit up, guide chip dark. It started happening right after updating the driver and firmware. But then it started working again. Saw stars on guide chip for about 1/2 hr, then stopped working. No settings were changed while it was working.

    I will be checking that shutter.

    But once again, I'm confused about the INTERNAL/EXTERNAL setting for the guide chip. Doug says "make sure it is set to external" and "I think you were imaging with the nonexistent internal guide chip". Keith says "Yes it is set to built in" and "Note sw was already configured internal guide chip", and says it's working.

    I am 99.9% sure we having been using ours for the last 1-1/2 years with it set to INTERNAL. But I keep seeing Diffraction Limited people say set it to EXTERNAL.

    I found another thread where I was left confused about it. When/if we get the shutter problem solved, I'll just go with whichever works.
     
  8. Doug

    Doug Staff Member

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    When we first took over, we found there was some confusion and inconsistency in thr driver code. We fixed all that. If you are using the current drivers, you should be using external.
     
  9. Chris Anderson

    Chris Anderson Cyanogen Customer

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    May 27, 2016
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    Location:
    Lamasco, KY US
    Concur. Guide chip EXT; dual chip mode CHECKed. CG
     

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