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Faulty Celestron DC motor drive


Peter B

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When my Celestron DC motor drive tracked the telescope in the wrong direction when set to the northern hemisphere I queried it with Celestron Customer Support. At first they didn’t admit that the motor was not operating properly and suggested that I simply set it to ‘S’ to track in the northern hemisphere.

 

I pressed Celestron on the matter thought and they finally admitted that they knew about the problem and that a batch of the motors had been assembled wrongly at the factory. They offered to replace the motor but I declined. I think what has happened is that the motor has been mounted on the gearbox 180 degrees out which means that when the motor and gearbox assembly are clipped onto the circuit board the motor’s positive and negative connections are lined up with the opposite polarity terminals on the circuit board.

 

If you’re unfortunate enough to have one of these faulty motors you could just do as Celestron suggest and run the motor switched to the opposite hemisphere but if you’re an incurable tinkerer like me you swap the motor connections like this.

 

I’ve seen a few others reporting this issue on You Tube and other places, so I thought I’d pop this in here in case it might help someone……..

 

20211231_153531.jpg

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16 hours ago, Peter B said:

When my Celestron DC motor drive tracked the telescope in the wrong direction when set to the northern hemisphere I queried it with Celestron Customer Support. At first they didn’t admit that the motor was not operating properly and suggested that I simply set it to ‘S’ to track in the northern hemisphere.

 

I pressed Celestron on the matter thought and they finally admitted that they knew about the problem and that a batch of the motors had been assembled wrongly at the factory. They offered to replace the motor but I declined. I think what has happened is that the motor has been mounted on the gearbox 180 degrees out which means that when the motor and gearbox assembly are clipped onto the circuit board the motor’s positive and negative connections are lined up with the opposite polarity terminals on the circuit board.

 

If you’re unfortunate enough to have one of these faulty motors you could just do as Celestron suggest and run the motor switched to the opposite hemisphere but if you’re an incurable tinkerer like me you swap the motor connections like this.

 

I’ve seen a few others reporting this issue on You Tube and other places, so I thought I’d pop this in here in case it might help someone……..

Glad you found the problem and it was a relatively simple fix. After watching a few of Cuiv's latest videos, I've come to the conclusion that QC is quite shocking on low end astro gear.

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Yes I agree.  It was interesting because in my email exchange with Celestron they said that they had only recently become aware of the issue with their motor drive and they were waiting to receive a faulty one to investigate it.  There are two things printed on the track side of the circuit board of my unit.  One is a 10 digit alpha-numeric code, probably a pattern number for the board, and under that is printed 99-01-29.  Now if that's a date it's taken one heck of a long time for the issue to surface!

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5 hours ago, Peter B said:

Yes I agree.  It was interesting because in my email exchange with Celestron they said that they had only recently become aware of the issue with their motor drive and they were waiting to receive a faulty one to investigate it.  There are two things printed on the track side of the circuit board of my unit.  One is a 10 digit alpha-numeric code, probably a pattern number for the board, and under that is printed 99-01-29.  Now if that's a date it's taken one heck of a long time for the issue to surface!

I find it hard to believe it took over 20 years to "find" this fault. The issue would show immediately, it's not something that can be fixed with a driver etc.

Edited by AstronomyUkraine
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6 hours ago, Peter B said:

There are two things printed on the track side of the circuit board of my unit.  One is a 10 digit alpha-numeric code, probably a pattern number for the board, and under that is printed 99-01-29.  Now if that's a date it's taken one heck of a long time for the issue to surface!

Might be part of a lottery number ☺️

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