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HEQ5 bolts


RPK_Astro

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I bought an HEQ5 last year and the one pain with it is adjusting alt/az when doing PA. The altitude adjustment bolts in particular are a right royal faff. Are there any readily available replacement bolts that provide a better solution? 

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Posted by: @RPK_Astro

I bought an HEQ5 last year and the one pain with it is adjusting alt/az when doing PA. The altitude adjustment bolts in particular are a right royal faff. Are there any readily available replacement bolts that provide a better solution? 

There is an upgrade set of bolts available for the HEQ5. Problem is, when using them, it is impossible to put the polar scope cover back on.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/333168013760

Bolts.thumb.jpg.4f13fe2585e196ab43caa415093b7066.thumb.jpg.2b62575f6be53720792117d6f7252c19.jpg

A better option would be to install an HEQ5 Rail kit. I installed the EQ6 version on my mount, and the adjustment is now smooth as silk. The installation is quite simple if you have a little mechanical experience.

https://www.darkframeoptics.com/product/heq5-rail-kit

Brian

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I just replaced mine with some M10 x 75 screws https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07MR9G4ZJ

Adjust them with a 17mm spanner. The advantage for me is the cables no longer snag on the skywatcher bolts which of course are made for all latitudes. They are overly long for me as I never move from northern England. The bolts will probably do for the whole UK.

I ground a dome on the end of the bolts though like the original skywatcher ones. This is so the bolt is free to bear upon the angled surface inside the mount that it bears upon when the altitude is altered.

 

image.thumb.png.e8db4bcb7da5be7eb005b8787e4710cb.png
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I attach the spanner to the side of the pier with a small 12mm button magnet so it is always to hand

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Skywatcher say the bolts are soft deliberately so the bolts bend rather than the mount threads strip !

Baaah pathetic excuse ? 

 

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Posted by: @RPK_Astro

I can't help but think that the supplied bolts are a serious design fail...

I don't think it's the bolts that are faulty, it's the internal design of the mount. The angle the bolts are pushing against to adjust the altitude is too acute, and it causes damage not only to the bolts, but also the mount too.

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Posted by: @padraic-m

@GazAstro Back in my IBM software development days we used to call this a 'feechur' i.e. a bug you don't want to fix.

Indeed, when I found a bug in some IBM mainframe software, after investigation, IBM responded with "It's an undocumented feature..." 

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Posted by: @AstronomyUkraine
Posted by: @RPK_Astro

I can't help but think that the supplied bolts are a serious design fail...

I don't think it's the bolts that are faulty, it's the internal design of the mount. The angle the bolts are pushing against to adjust the altitude is too acute, and it causes damage not only to the bolts, but also the mount too.

Agreed it's poorly thought out ... But it's worked fairly well for most people for a long time.

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Posted by: @GazAstro

Agreed it's poorly thought out ... But it's worked fairly well for most people for a long time.

I think a lot of the problems arise when the mount is loaded to near capacity. The mount carrying a small refractor would be easy to adjust in altitude, but a large newtonian carrying 15kg of counterweights would be a different proposition.

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The issue I mostly have is the mechanics of operation have been poorly thought out. Screwing the altitude bolts is just difficult - regardless of whether scope is attached or not. The existing hinged bar doesn't really provide enough leverage and it gets fouled on either the polar scope or the mount.  

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Posted by: @RPK_Astro

The issue I mostly have is the mechanics of operation have been poorly thought out. Screwing the altitude bolts is just difficult - regardless of whether scope is attached or not. The existing hinged bar doesn't really provide enough leverage and it gets fouled on either the polar scope or the mount.  

Yep, you're right ! I tried to defend it but it's rubbish :-)

 

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Posted by: @GazAstro
Posted by: @RPK_Astro

The issue I mostly have is the mechanics of operation have been poorly thought out. Screwing the altitude bolts is just difficult - regardless of whether scope is attached or not. The existing hinged bar doesn't really provide enough leverage and it gets fouled on either the polar scope or the mount.  

Yep, you're right ! I tried to defend it but it's rubbish :-)

 

If the head of the bolt had longer bar through it / hinged that woudl help as it would give you more leverage

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