G-5500 controller relays

Hope this may be of some help to other G-5500 owners out there.

The controller box uses a set of 4 relays to control rotor motor movement (up, down, CW, CCW). This works great for the weekend satellite chaser but it is not the best design for a 24x7 duty cycle with automation and precise tracking. Physical relays suffer from arcing and contact wear and over time will end up failing.

Here is a drastic example on the left, and one where the damage is more visible under a magnifying glass on the right.

I’ve posted before about working on a solid state design but events of this year have preempted a ton of things for me. Lacking that, I reached a point where I needed to replace some relays yet again. Fearing that at some point the desoldering and resoldering of relays would ruin a pad, I went looking for sockets. Thankfully there are options out there (digikey is where I found these here).

Relays and their new sockets installed.

The relays are a very tight fit in those sockets so getting them out will be a bit of a challenge - but I still see this as less of a risk than changing them out with solder for the 4th+ time. Plus, you wouldn’t want a loose fit where the small vibration of the relay shaking it free.

And while I was in there, both AC light bulbs for the meters were burned out and I replaced them with a cool blue LED glow. It does not make the meters anymore visible, just looks cool. :slight_smile:


I don’t own one of these but curious.
What Voltage, Current are these relays switching? AC or DC?
Could these relays be replaced by Solid state relays? MOSFETs or Triacs
How about adding some spark suppressing capacitors across the contacts?

I built a rotator with 2 old TV rotators which have 28VAC motors. I used one of the cheap Chinese Triac switching boards.

They are activating 26 VAC to the motor. I’m not sure exactly on the power draw when doing so but max off of the transformer according to the schematic is 2.8A. The triggering voltage is 12 VDC.

Technically, yes! I have such a setup on a breadboard today - but there’s another thread ongoing about removing the starting caps and driving such a rotor with an h-bridge. Ultimately that has become a project that is pretty low on my list and I keep having to replace relays in the meantime :slight_smile:

I’ll look into prebuilt switching boards, thanks!