Re: ASCOMPAD and PMC-8 Connection Problems

Mark Lamb

I have been away for a few days, but last night I got out again.  I had high thin clouds, but had enough visibility to setup, align, use Bahtinov mask to focus, get APT to platesolve, and to take a few shots for training (only) purposes.   I am still not trying autoguiding, as I want to take one step at a time.  With the next couple of days/nights without rain, I may attach my QHY5L-II-M and try PHD2 by Wednesday.

The PMC-8 serial connection does NOT work as I was expecting.  My impression was that after switching to serial with the PUTTY process, it would stay in the serial mode.  I had mine switched to serial in my basement last week, and when I tried it tonight it would NOT work with the serial cable, but would work with wifi.  I noticed the same thing last week, as I switched to serial and my tablet talked to the PMC-8 as expected, but the next day (after turning off the system), the PMC-8 had reverted on its own back to wifi, requiring redoing the convoluted serial switch process.  Is the PMC-8 supposed to always revert to wifi upon power down?

If the PMC-8 automatically reverts to wifi when shut down, it is even more necessary to get an easy, one-click switching method.

Since it was already dark when I went out, I left it in the wifi mode, and it worked perfectly.

Last week I had seen Jerry note on wifi issues, and one of the points was to have the PC more than 1-2 feet from the PMC-8.  I was previously having tablet ~ 1ft from the PMC-8.  Last night, I moved it ~3ft away and had no problems.

When looking at the photos, it seems that my focus is off a bit, as the stars are round but noticeably too large.  I was also trying various exposure times, from 60s to 420s, and upon viewing on my 11" tablet, all of the exposures look ~ the same, with no obvious star trailing.  If I had better fine focus, I wonder how much of a difference there would be?  The 6min and 7min exposure might have been a little ragged, but I have to get the photos on to my Z440 and view on a 27" monitor to check.  So from that experiment (which was consistent with last week), it seems that my G11 is working well and my alignment (with Polemaster) has been good.

When I viewed on my 27" monitor, the star shapes are ~ the same on exposures from 60s to 420s. While the stars in the center of the frame are very round (though slightly out of focus), those on the edges are slightly oval.  To this novice, that seems to tell me that the mount is tracking very well unguided, but I have some field curvature in my ED102CF (there is NO field flattner) and/or some slop in the compression fitting that attaches to my camera's 2"nose tube, causing the sensor to be slightly off parallel.

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