blinking reticle

Finder Illuminator

Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) circuit for illuminating finder scopes.
Click on any thumbnail for a larger picture.

entire_assy.jpg [90kB] Project components for illuminating the polar finder scope on my Orion AstroView and SkyView Pro mounts. The "head" fits in a mount's polar boresight hole. It also works in the EQ-6/Orion Atlas mount and, with different heads, on a variety of finder scopes. The duty cycle can be adjusted from 0 to 95% but I find that about 10% is perfect for most uses.

AstroView+head.jpg [181kB] SVP_w_head.jpg [196kB] Atlas_w_head.jpg [172kB] From left to right: head mounted on an Orion AstroView, Orion SkyView Pro, and Orion Atlas (aka EQ-6) mount. The Atlas mount has its own illuminator so this is to show it'll work with an EQ-6 (same manufacturer: Synta).

inside_ctlr.jpg [149kB] Inside of the controller box. As you can see from the size of the battery and other components, there's little unused space. If I had to do it again I'd use a larger box. :-)

jack+LED.jpg [66kB] head_front.jpg [86kB] At the left is an LED soldered to a mini-phone jack which is the key to this project's universality. Similar LED+jack assemblies can be mounted in a variety of tubing [right picture] to fit nearly any finder scope. The tubing can be surplused vacuum cleaner parts or plastic piping from any hardware store.

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