Celestron StarSense AutoAlign for Sky-Watcher Information

Look | Look with Telescope Tubes | Basic Data | First Remarks | Preliminary Conclusions | Links

On this page, I provide some information about my new Celestron StarSense AutoAlign for Sky-Watcher module (ordered on February 1, from Teleskop-Spezialisten, arrived on February 7, 2018), which I will call "StarSense module" for short in the following. After the acquisition of a GoTo controller, this module is the final step towards "complete astronomical incompetence." I think that I will have to live with that now (more on this under First Remarks)...

The basic data was taken from the manual.

 

Look

Unpacking

Box opened

Ditto, upper layer removed

Ditto, box content visible

Box content

Box content removed

Box content, closer view

Allen wrench and screws visible...

... and viewed closer

Handbox

Small bracket

Interface box

Ditto

StarSense module, rear view

StarSense module, front view with cap on camera

StarSense module, front view, cap removed

Mounting the Small Camera Bracket to the Module

My telescopes have a Vixen/Sky-Watcher dovetail base that fits the small camera bracket. I therefore needed to remove the pre-installed large camera bracket on the StarSense module. This is shown in the following:

Slightly loosen the socket head screw using the included 4 mm Allen wrench...

...but do not remove the screw entirely

Remove the lens shroud...

...by unscrewing it

This takes some time...

Lens shroud removed

Camera seen from nearby

Ditto

StarSense, lens shroud removed

Large bracket removed (with some force). Do not lose the orange rings!

Small bracket put in place

Fastening the socket head screw again

Lens shroud is being screwed on again. The orange rings function as washers

StarSense with small bracket

Ditto, rear view

Als noted that the two orange rings, are not lost and are returned to their original positions. They function as washers.

StarSense connected to the Star Discovery Mount

Note that the 12 V power supply was not installed.

Star Discovery mount with originale handbox

Star Discovery mount with Celestron handbox - wrongly connected!

 

StarSense interface box

StarSense interface box and handbox on mount

Ditto

StarSense interface box, viewed from below

StarSense interface box and handbox on mount - positions exchanged for perhaps less cable clutter

Ditto

 

Look with Telescope Tubes

StarSense with Skymax-102 OTA on Star Discovery Mount

Note that the 12 V power supply was not installed.

Skymax-102 OTA with StarSense on mount

Ditto, rear view

Ditto, side view

Ditto, side view

Ditto, front view

 

Ditto

Oblique rear view

Ditto, front view

Ditto

Oblique view from above

As noted elsewhere, the finder position is unfavorable - I will have to check whether this works at all...

StarSense with Skymax-127 OTA on Star Discovery Mount

Skymax-127 OTA with StarSense on mount

Dito

Ditto

Ditto, side view

Ditto

Ditto, rear view

Ditto

Ditto, oblique view from front

Ditto

Complete view from front

As noted elsewhere, the finder position is unfavorable - I will have to check whether this works at all...

StarSense with Explorer 150PDS Newton Tube on Star Discovery Mount

Side view, camera cut off...

Side view - with camera

Ditto

Front view

Rear view

Rear view, tube pointing upwards

Side view, tube pointing upwards

Ditto

Ditto

Other side, tube pointing upwards

 

Ditto

Closer view of the camera

Closer view

Even closer...

Ditto

View into the tube

Ditto

 

 

Basic Data for Sky-Watcher Star Discovery AZ GoTo Telescope Mount

Package

Camera Data

Handbox Data

 

First Remarks

My first experiences with the Celestron StarSense module can be found on page Celestron StarSense AutoAlign for Sky-Watcher - First Experiences. After an initial failure, I found, purely theoretically, a procedure to make the module work.

On February 12, 2018 I had the opportunity to try out my approach, and it led to success. This can also be read on the above mentioned page. Now there are, of course, still "subtleties" missing, especially how the measures to increase the pointing accuracy will work...

Did the StarSense module already significantly increase my incompetence? Since I am just at the beginning, and I still had to know where the calibration stars were located, not much has been achieved in this direction so far. But this will surely change over time, when the alignment will only be done automatically...

 

Preliminary Conclusions

In progress

My preliminary conclusion, after my initial problems, is that Celestron does neither the buyers nor itself a favor by delivering the StarSense module with an outdated and misleading (or also wrong...) manual. I probably would never have been able to get the module up and running without a lot of try-and-error and searching the Internet. What a pity!

There are also some other details that get on my nerves. So one almost forgets that the StarSense module seems to do its job well when it finally works properly, and you do not have excessive demands on positioning accuracy. But for being able to judge the latter, I need much more experience with the device anyway.

 

Links

 

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gerd (at) waloszek (dot) de

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06.04.2018