Meade 12" LX600 in the SkyShed POD
Posted: 18 February 2016
Open: Thursday, 18 February 2016, 0943 MST
Conditions: Partly cloudy, breezy
After the previous night's successful Checkout and First Light of the Meade 12" LX600, I went to the observatory to set up the telescope on the X-Wedge inside the POD. I brought the X-Wedge box from the garage and then moved the OTA, base, and StarLock refractor telescope to the patio. I then unboxed the wedge, read the instructions, and began setting it up on the tripod. I initially positioned the tripod in a similar orientation to what I used with the 8" LX200-ACF. When I went to attach the X-Wedge I discovered that the tripod had to be rotated 180°. This position took up a little more walking space but I can live with it until I get the pier. This is the X-Wedge on the tripod in the POD:
Next, I attached the base to the wedge:
The last step was to attach the OTA (optical tube assembly) to the fork arms. On the previous night with the telescope set up in Alt/Az I could lift the OTA to attach it. However, today I discovered that the extra height from the wedge prevented me from getting the OTA high enough to do it by myself. I called a nearby amateur astronomer friend and he came by to help. After discussing the best way to lift the OTA and get the fork arms aligned, together we raised and attached the OTA successfully. Thanks much Jim!
I then attached the StarLock telescope and my Antares 7x50 illuminated reticle finderscope, and attached necessary cables. Here is the 12" LX600 wedge mounted in the SkyShed POD:
The finderscope is not visible in the above photo.
The last thing I did this day was to route the electrical power cables for the telescope, Nikon DSLR camera, and the GC Wi-Fi Adapter, and connect the W-Fi adapter to the telescope base RS-232 port. 1351 MST: completed the set up inside the observatory.
The forecast for the next few nights is for cloudy skies so I probably will not get an opportunity to use the new telescope for awhile. Once I can get in some observing with the 12" LX600 I will determine the optimal position and height for a pier. I will also be checking out all my existing and new accessories with the telescope.
Close: Thursday, 18 February 2016, 1400 MST
Session Length: 4h 17m|
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