I’ve been planning this for about two, maybe three weeks. After I received the correct grease from America, I figured that with the weekend shaping up to be wet, windy and pointless for viewing, this would be a good time to get-to and finish maintaining the Paramount MX inside SkySlab. This sounds like a risky task – given the cost of the mount – but after watching some videos, reading the instructions (which you can access if you are a paid subscriber to Software Bisque) and discussing it briefly on IceInSpace, I was confident enough to do this without calling on Software Bisque for help.
Before I go into the detail, the end result has been good I think. I’ve re-greased both axis of the mount, taken the worm drives off, made sure the belts are the kevlar reinforced grey ones and put it all back together. The only thing I’m not sure about was adjusting the cam shaft lock. I did this but am not sure about how tightly the lock screws (not the grub screws, the button screws) need to be. It’s an easy thing to re-adjust if all else fails and if the PEC curve or mount performance suffers. This needs to be tested – which will happen in the next few weeks.
Here’s the detail
Here’s a video of the mount after maintenance being exercised
What’s next (when weather and time permit)?
- Put a scope on the mount;
- Get the imaging train right;
- Collimate and focus;
- Do a 300 t-point run;
- Check polar alignment;
- Probably do some modifications based on the polar alignment;
- Do another 300 t-point run;
- Hopefully that will be ok, otherwise rinse and repeat from step 5 until the polar alignment report tells me it’s close enough;
- Check collimation and focus again;
- Take some photos (!!).