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Author Topic: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification  (Read 13066 times)

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Offline dtrewren

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HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« on: 20:20:18, 12 December, 2013 »
Hello fellow imagers !

Another day, another little project  :D

I love my HEQ5 mount - it may be budget and not able to carry the biggest payload but it guides well
and seems to produce comparable results when compared to much more expensive mounts.

One thing I don't like is the racket it makes when starting and ending a slew.  I know it's only the gears
meshing but it does sound horrible and even after adjustment it's still there, although much reduced.  So
I have decided to carry out a belt modification.  This entails removing the offending gears and replacing
them with a pulley and belt arrangement.  This virtually eliminates any backlash, will fix the rattle issues
and should generally improve performance.

The advantage of the gears I am using is that they don't change the drive train ratio from that of the
standard mount so you can still use the hand controller (if you have one) and no software modifications
are required - happy days !

Here are some photos of the pulleys & belts - hopefully I will get to carry out the modification over the
weekend and will post some video showing the before and after  :D

Clear skies,

              Dave


HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Online chris.bailey

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #1 on: 21:09:02, 12 December, 2013 »
O' I do love timing belts and gears!

Chris
LX200|ZS70|FSQ85|FLT110|Altair DF250RC|EQ6 Pro(Rowan Belt Mod)|ParamountMX
ATIK383L+/EFW2/OAG|Lodestar|Baader 36mm LRGBHaSIIOIII
Starlight Express SXVRH16/ONAG/FW|Lodestar X2|Baader 2" Filters
Starlight Express SXVRH814/ONAG/FW|LodestarX2|Baader 2" Filters
Lunt LS60PTBF1200|DMK41|Quark Chromo

Offline dtrewren

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #2 on: 21:19:07, 12 December, 2013 »
Hi Chris,

I am also hoping I will love pulleys and belts  :D

It should prove to be a straight forward modification and is easily reversed although I suspect
the results will be most palatable.  My only concern was belt tension putting lateral pressure on
the motor and worm gear bearings - this obviously is not the case with a standard meshing gear
arrangement.

We shall see - it looks like fun and I'm very much looking forward to seeing and NOT hearing the result !

Cheers,

               Dave
HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Offline psjshep

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #3 on: 23:37:13, 12 December, 2013 »
Now this is getting most interesting....

I have seen a number of belt modifications over the years, especially on the EQ6 Yahoo forum.... some seem to have been very successful but not much is heard later...

It may help you Dave to at least look & post some Q's on that site..... but to return here with your progress of course!

Phil
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Offline dtrewren

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #4 on: 07:55:31, 13 December, 2013 »
Morning Phil,

Cheers, I will definitely have a look.  I did do quite  bit of poking around on line before
deciding to do the mod so confidence is running high :)

I could take a load of PE data before and after but to be honest slow PE from worm
gears and the like I'm not bothered about because I always autoguide and so these
slow errors are tracked out.  I am more interested in clearing up the noise issue which
is purely cosmetic and removing the gear mesh backlash as this may impact guiding
performance.

So the bottom line is, if the noise gets fixed and the guiding error is as good or better
than now I'll be a happy bunny - and I get to rebuild the mount as a bonus :)

Right, let me at it !

Cheers,

              Dave
HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Online chris.bailey

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #5 on: 08:12:18, 13 December, 2013 »
Dave

I looked in to belt driving my EQ6, again not so much for PE reasons but more to try and get rid of some of the backlash from the traveller gear. The key seems to be the run out on the timing gears. Still basically PE but at a much lower period so harder to guide out. Those timing gears look made for purpose rather than the only option a few years back of modding timing gears made for other purposes.

Do those gear sets retain the stock EQ gear ratios or does this mod mean a custom EQMod setup?

Chris
LX200|ZS70|FSQ85|FLT110|Altair DF250RC|EQ6 Pro(Rowan Belt Mod)|ParamountMX
ATIK383L+/EFW2/OAG|Lodestar|Baader 36mm LRGBHaSIIOIII
Starlight Express SXVRH16/ONAG/FW|Lodestar X2|Baader 2" Filters
Starlight Express SXVRH814/ONAG/FW|LodestarX2|Baader 2" Filters
Lunt LS60PTBF1200|DMK41|Quark Chromo

Offline dtrewren

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #6 on: 08:29:13, 13 December, 2013 »
Hi Chris,

Yes the gears are really well made and fit the belt perfectly !

The small pulley is 9 tooth and the large pulley is 47 tooth which matches the existing mount
drive chain ratio and therefore no custom modification is required and even the hand controller
will work.

In the past the 9 tooth pulley was the issue as taking an off the shelf pulley and drilling it out
to fit the 5mm shaft left precious little pulley left and they had a habit of disintegrating under
load.  The 9 tooth pulley I am using is turned from solid piece of aluminium rather than being
drilled out and therefore overcomes the earlier issue.

Cheers,

                 Dave
HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Online chris.bailey

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #7 on: 08:43:10, 13 December, 2013 »
That is a very neat kit indeed and pretty straightforward on the 5. Not so easy on the 6!

Chris
LX200|ZS70|FSQ85|FLT110|Altair DF250RC|EQ6 Pro(Rowan Belt Mod)|ParamountMX
ATIK383L+/EFW2/OAG|Lodestar|Baader 36mm LRGBHaSIIOIII
Starlight Express SXVRH16/ONAG/FW|Lodestar X2|Baader 2" Filters
Starlight Express SXVRH814/ONAG/FW|LodestarX2|Baader 2" Filters
Lunt LS60PTBF1200|DMK41|Quark Chromo

Offline dtrewren

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #8 on: 08:51:09, 13 December, 2013 »
Yes indeed, the HEQ5 modification is very straight forward - simply pop out the motors
take off the gears, put on the pulleys and pop the motors back in.  Maybe an hours work
with a bit of videoing.  The EQ6 is a bit more involved but all the instructions are provided.

Actually, how remiss of me, waffling on about the parts and didn't mention where they came
from.  I got the parts from and company called Rowan Engineering who make all sorts of
precision stuff - really fine quality !  UK based and very informative, parts arrived in a day
or so with all the fitting instructions.

Found this company after speaking to the boys down under who have been ordering
conversion kits from top side and getting them sent south.

http://rowanastronomy.com/index.htm

Cheers,

                Dave
HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Offline continuum

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #9 on: 09:18:45, 13 December, 2013 »
From reports on other Forums the Rowan kit is by far the best particularly as it retains the ability to use the handset or EQMOD without any changes, which the other kits do not.
It's also reported that tracking is improved.
Looking forward to your first report Dave.
Ron

Offline dtrewren

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #10 on: 17:09:07, 13 December, 2013 »
Hello everyone,

I have completed my HEQ5 belt modification and it seems to have gone really well  :D

The whole mod took about an hour but that included videoing and also realignment of both the DEC and RA
worm gear spacings.  The modification was quite straight forward and the Rowan kit and instructions were
spot on.  I shot four videos which are mercifully short !

Hope you like ....

Cheers,

     Dave


Pre mod



Dec only



Both



Park








HEQ5 Pro
Skywatcher 80ED & 120ED
Skywatcher 80 short guidescopes
Altair Astro 8" f/4 Newt
Nikkor 180mm f/2.8 ED widefield
Lunt60 PT + DS + DMK41
QHY9M + FW (LRGB & NB)
QHY10 OSC
Focuser & Dew control : SharpSky Pro
Starshoot autoguider

Offline continuum

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #11 on: 17:46:48, 13 December, 2013 »
Nicely done Dave.
Ron

Online chris.bailey

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #12 on: 18:30:45, 13 December, 2013 »
Your Dec axis sounded like a lathe!

That looks very nice now. I'm tempted to try the EQ6!

Chris
LX200|ZS70|FSQ85|FLT110|Altair DF250RC|EQ6 Pro(Rowan Belt Mod)|ParamountMX
ATIK383L+/EFW2/OAG|Lodestar|Baader 36mm LRGBHaSIIOIII
Starlight Express SXVRH16/ONAG/FW|Lodestar X2|Baader 2" Filters
Starlight Express SXVRH814/ONAG/FW|LodestarX2|Baader 2" Filters
Lunt LS60PTBF1200|DMK41|Quark Chromo

Online Roger B

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #13 on: 15:22:23, 14 December, 2013 »
This sounds/looks interesting.

where can I find a "how to" for the eq6 pro ?   I'd like to see what's involved

Roger
Scopes - TS65q, W/O 110 Triplet
Mount - EQ6 PRO via  Eqmod,  Rowan belt modded
Cameras - SX694, QSI583WSG,Lodestar Guidecam, GP-Cam, QHY5II.
TS 9mm OAG
Quantum 7x1.25 EFW, Baader LRGB,Ha,OIII,SII Filters 
Quark chromo

SGPro, Pixinsight.

************AND NO TIME TO USE IT************

Online chris.bailey

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Re: HEQ5 Pro Mount Belt Modification
« Reply #14 on: 15:51:14, 14 December, 2013 »
Roger

http://rowanastronomy.com/pdf/NEQ6-Belt-Kit.pdf so a bit more involved than with the 5. I just know I would drop and loose something vital!

Chris
LX200|ZS70|FSQ85|FLT110|Altair DF250RC|EQ6 Pro(Rowan Belt Mod)|ParamountMX
ATIK383L+/EFW2/OAG|Lodestar|Baader 36mm LRGBHaSIIOIII
Starlight Express SXVRH16/ONAG/FW|Lodestar X2|Baader 2" Filters
Starlight Express SXVRH814/ONAG/FW|LodestarX2|Baader 2" Filters
Lunt LS60PTBF1200|DMK41|Quark Chromo

 

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