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Webster Telescopes Forum • View topic - Connecting Battery Power
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 Post subject: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 4:25 pm
Posts: 20
Location: England
Useful tips in the FAQs re. getting a deep cycle battery eg 80Ahr, vs a typical astro "power tank" eg Celestron.

Having ordered the powered ground board option on my Webster dob, I wonder how it connects to the battery. Presumably a cable with clips that grab the naked battery terminals going to a phono type socket into the ground board....

Re. additional peripherals I plan buying - 12v fan and dewheater controller (for eyepiece heating strips and telrad heater), these all seem to terminate in a cigarette lighter type plug. Powertanks contain a few sockets to accept these. But we're now talking about marine deep cycle cells, which do not have the socket. So what is the solution ??? Do you need to cut the powercable to these devices and modify so they end in clips that grab the battery terminals ? Or do you modify so them so they connect to the groundboard (if that comes with extra sockets) ?

Just to confirm 80Ahr battery is about right to power a big dob setup with heaters etc ?

Thanks for any advice re power, I need to get to grips with dew control on dobs - it's spoilt one too many trips....


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 2:25 am
Posts: 122
Good questions!

You want a Cigarette Lighter Adapter (CLA). You can get them with Cable Clamps or Terminal Rings.


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:33 am 
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The Powered Ground Board already comes with a cable that plugs into your Cigarette Lighter, so it can plug into your car or battery.

An 80 amp hour deep cycle battery can run a big dob for over a week of observing.

A phono jack is not really tough enough to be mounted to a ground board and survive.

We use the much more road worthy XLR locking jack:


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 9:14 am 
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Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 4:25 pm
Posts: 20
Location: England
Thanks Jim, i'll be getting that adapter.

I guess for the extra stuff like Dew heater strips, Telrad heater and 12v hairdryer, that will require a separate line to the battery. The groundboard is to power the Argo, ServoCat & secondary heater alone ?

From what you say 80Ahr might be overkill, but I guess it's nice to have one less thing to think about (i.e. is my power running flat?)


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:48 am
Posts: 80
Location: Detroit Michigan
If you have the secondary dew heater option from us, you will already have 12v power up on the UTA that you can use for other devices. If not, just run any power you need from the Powered Ground Board outlets in the bottom of the Rockerbox.

The 12v hair dryer might be the only item you would probably want to run directly off of the battery.

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Eric Webster
http://www.WebsterTelescopes.com


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Sun Jan 30, 2011 9:26 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 4:25 pm
Posts: 20
Location: England
Eric wrote:
If you have the secondary dew heater option from us, you will already have 12v power up on the UTA that you can use for other devices.


Hi, I'm just wondering what the 12v power terminals on the UTA would look like for the D18. All I can find on the web are pics showing a phono plug up there.

If you had a dew heater controller for several things up on the UTA (eg telrad heater, eyepiece dew heater) were would that be best placed and what kind of plug will the controller need to connect with the powered groundboard (or UTA power) ?

I may be customising my controller anyway, so want to get it right for the Webster scope too.

Thanks, Jon.


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 4:11 am 
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Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:48 am
Posts: 80
Location: Detroit Michigan
Yes, a "phono plug" or "RCA plug" is the closest thing we have to a standard in the industry, so that of course is what we use on the UTA and inside the Rockerbox. Kendrick started it and everyone else followed.

The RCA is a good choice because it is large enough of a connector to be soldered by the hobbyist. Those 2.1mm plugs are frail and the solder lugs are almost tinfoil. The 2.1mm solderable jacks also lack any strain relief, so shorts and breaks are common in the field.

As far as a dew controller, it would depend on the model more than anything as to how it could be affixed.

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Eric Webster
http://www.WebsterTelescopes.com


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 6:19 am 
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Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 4:25 pm
Posts: 20
Location: England
thanks Eric, so the scopes have a male phono/ RCA plug at the UTA and another inside the rocker box?

Therefore any devices needing 12v power should be built with a female phono/ RCA jack for their power input, or you'd use a female-to-female adapter like this http://www.dv247.com/assets/products/32900_l.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 1:47 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 11:48 am
Posts: 80
Location: Detroit Michigan
Let us qualify this answer, because we have received some emails and owners are becoming confused by our posts.

1. If you ordered a Powered Ground Board, your scope has FEMALE RCA jacks in the bottom of the Rockerbox.

2. If you ordered any telescope with an Argonavis or Secondary Dew Heater that is mounted on the UTA, your scope has FEMALE RCA jacks up on the UTA to power it/them.

3. If you did not order any of the above options, we did not wire up the scope for those options.

4. None of the above prevents an owner from wiring the scope any way he chooses, although by keeping all the wiring and jacks consistent, it probably will make things easier on the ownership group as a whole. Aftermarket accessories from other manufacturers will be easier to purchase if we all have the same base to build upon.

5. The female RCA jack looks like this:


Attachments:
rca_jacks.png
rca_jacks.png [ 164.68 KiB | Viewed 10511 times ]

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Eric Webster
http://www.WebsterTelescopes.com
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 Post subject: Re: Connecting Battery Power
PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 4:18 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 01, 2010 4:25 pm
Posts: 20
Location: England
thanks, that's clear now. I misinterpreted your previous post about the male female thing.


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