First night with the LX200

Well after a rushed assembly tonight in my conservatory at around 8.30pm, I managed to get my LX200 turned on whilst I got familiar with the hand controls.

After about 30mins I just had to get outside, as the sky was fairly cloudless, so out I went. The first thing that I had problems with was to screw in the bolt under the tripod, even though I have a deluxe locator plate, so heck knows what it would be like without one!

I finally got the tripod screwed into the telescope after what seemed like 15 minutes, I think the problem was that the legs of the tripod were not spread out evenly, even though they were all spread out, as the spacer kept knocking on one of the legs stopping me from connecting the bolt thread with the telescope.

If any body has any tips on how to easily and quickly connect the bolt thread to the LX200 then please tell me, like using the ‘C’ clip or using nuts etc.

I then set the scope off into its automatic alignment, although it kept asking me to identify stars (I thought it was fully automatic with GPS?), and when it did there were no “brightest stars” around, so I think I just unlocked the RA and Dec and manually moved it – which I now know is wrong and you should just use the keys on the handset instead (hey don’t blame me – I didn’t read the manual!).

So obviously when I asked for Andromeda then GOTO – it found me blank sky, and went completely the wrong direction when I asked for the Ring Nebula via GOTO. So for the rest of the evening I gave up on the GOTO until I have read and mastered the manual, instead I manually used the Dec and RA to find Andromeda etc myself.

The LX200 is a cool machine – I just wish I knew how to use it. I think practice will make perfect.

Any tips on setting up the LX200 would be welcomed.


  • James Munson

    I think the problem you are having is that the top plate of the tripod is not in the correct attitude and position to the legs. Each leg needs to be pulled out quite hard – I’m referring to ‘spread’ here rather than length. If one leg is not fully spread, the spreader (the three armed casting carried on the long attachment screw) will engage improperly against the legs and hold the bolt a the wrong angle as it addresses the female thread in the bottom of the LX200. The AE locator plate will do a good job holding the scope base in the right place relative to the centre hole, you just need to make sure the legs are fully deployed and swung out to make sure the hole in the spreader is also in the correct position. I hope this helps. James Munson SnS.

  • Allan Macdonald

    I am sure you have sorted out the tripod positioning by now, but I put the tripod on the floor and make sure each leg is contacting the spreader plate then pick the tripod up using either the top of the thread or the hand screw, this allows the legs to line up properly on the spreader plate. Put the tripod down and Bobs your Uncle!

  • Lorne

    I had the same problem.I found that my clock was not correct (essential) and the date not right.
    I also use the- easy alignment and have been successful.
    I was told by my son ,inside the computer of the scope there is a tiny (quarter size) battery that may need replacing.This I also repaced
    I went to the program what’s up tonight and as I went through the objects ,the scope pinpointed things better and better.
    Actually had a all nighter.with the sky.Lorne

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