eFinder progress

After a year of experimenting with my eFinder I am still seeing new potentials. Most interesting is the possibility of replacing the usual encoder system on Dobsonian. This will deliver very high pointing accuracy, simplified initial alignment and less demands on main telescope mount build accuracy. The disadvantage is the lag in getting a position fix compared with the near instantaneous readout from encoders. I am currently exploring how this lag affects the observing experience (spoiler alert: not much!)

It will be relatively simple to integrate the eFinder code into the existing main ScopeDog control box. Even though I use SkySafari on a tablet, I still want a local display of telescope position and status (ie like the Nexus DSC display). I have just finished a prototype based on a Raspberry Pi Pico board and 1.3” OLED display. It connects to the main box via USB. Total cost about $20!

© AstroKeith 2022