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A 12 volt battery is usually required if you want to get your telescope out to a dark-sky site. After doing some research, I found that a car battery cannot take many cycles of discharging and then charging again. The minimum would be a marine battery gel cell, or better yet, a dry cell. The best way to keep the battery when not in use is to get a charger that senses the charge and will trickle-charge the battery to keep it topped off without intervention.

I then added up the amperage of all the equipment that I would want to run off the battery - telescope, dew heaters, CCD camera, autoguider, laptop computer, focuser, etc., and was surprised to find that with all this equipment a 75 amp hour battery would be the minimum I would need, so giving myself a little reserve I ended up with a 95AH battery.

I purchased a plastic case for it and some misc. Radio Shack parts to allow me to plug 6 devices into it, a few switches, and a voltage meter. I just bolted them all onto the plastic battery enclosure and wired them up with fuses. It's worked great for over a year now.


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