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The Warthog

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Everything posted by The Warthog

  1. Meteors would move so fast across your FOV that you would wonder if you saw anything at all. However, the combination of 4mm ep and 2x Barlow is far too much for your scope. Our skies were said to be partly cloudy last night, and it was true. There was only one cloud, and it went from horizon to horizon in every direction. We are supposed to be getting some clear weather from your direction tonight. Did these objects move from east to west? Did they move at a different rate from the stars around them? What general direction were they located. I doubt that what you saw was anything other than a
  2. OK, then, the advertising copy that I read was incorrect. Still, 165x is a bit optimistic, and 120x would seem a bit more realistic. The diagonal adds nothing but some extra ease and comfort in viewing, expecially on objects at high altitudes.
  3. Keep in mind the aadvice given to medical students, "When you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras." First of all, with a 4mm ep and a 2x BArlow, you are almost certainly giving the scope more magnification than it can handle. Anything you get in your FOV at such a high magnification will have to be recentred every few seconds as the apparent motion of the skies is much enhanced. (I am assuming you don't have a motorized mount.) You say you can see stars sharply, but can you see them sharply with that combination of Barlow and ep? The quality of your 4mm ep may come into question here. H
  4. A lunar occultation occurs when the moon passes in front of a star. If the occultation is on the dark limb, it seems to 'wink out' instantly. I watched the moon pass in front of the Pleiades a couple of years ago. It was pretty spectacular, watching the stars go out one by one, to appear later as the Moon passed.
  5. The specifications for that scope from a Canadian supplier say 700mm, and f/10, but their copy could be wrong. Whatever, John has given you a good suggestion for a set of eps that will give you a good range of magnifications. If you still feel lost, keep asking questions until you find your way.
  6. First, read my sticky, "Eyepieces - the very least you need." A decent kit for your scope would be a 6mm, 10mm 16mm and 24mm. That will give you a nice range of magnifications. Buy brand-name plossls unless you can afford something better right off the bat. I am pretty sure the eps that come with this scope are 1.25". An easy way to find out is to take a ruler and measure the diameter of the end of the ep that goes into the tube. It will be either 1¼", or slightly less than an inch (.965") That will answer your question. A reflecting telescope isn't much good for terrestrial viewing. The view
  7. A logical step would be to buy a 7.5mm eyepiece, which combined with your Barlow would give you 200x. I often use this power exploring the Moon. As for the brand, get the highest quality you can afford. You seem to be at a point where you are ready to slowly accumulate a few top quality eps, rather than quickly accumulate a handful of standard quality ones.
  8. First read the sticky "Eyepieces - the very least you need." This will give you some clue as to what to get. With your scope the best magnification you cn hope for is 120x under average conditions. This is obtained with an eyepiece of 7.5mm. As others have said, increasing the magnification will not improve the image, only make a fuzzy image larger. There is a direct relationship between aperture and resolving power (the ability to see small targets) and this results in the best magnification you can get, under ideal sky conditions, being 2x the aperture in millimetres of the scope.
  9. First read the sticky "Eyepieces - the very least you need." This will give you some clue as to what to get. The focal ratio of your scope is f/10, and the 10mm eyepiece will give you 70x, while the 20mm will give you 35x. If your eyepieces are slightly less than an inch in diameter, write us back. Otherwise you should be able to get a good idea of what you need from the sticky.
  10. When I took the dog out last night, I was surprised to find the sky perfectly clear, with a nice crescent Moon hanging next to Jupiter, and the whole thing crowned by Venus. I didn't want to go to the considerable trouble of setting up my big scope, so I got my little Mak out, and as I don't have a decent tripod for it (I use it for terrestrial spotting mostly) I hand held it against the top of my fence, and got slightly shaky views of Crisium and Fecnditatis. While I was watching, the crazy Italian woman across the street came out onto her porch, and started yelling. As I don't speak Italian
  11. I planned to go out for a squint tonight, but got busy with other things and left it too late. Congratulations!
  12. Just for the record, the "H" on your eyepieces stands for "Huygenian." Now Huygens, who designed the eyepiece, was a genius, but he was a 17th century genius. Eyepiece design has come a long way since then, but suppliers of cheap scopes still supply them because they are dirt cheap to manufacture, and allow them to make ridiculous claims about the power you can achieve with your scope. The Skywatcher Plossl is a decent ep, but a longer version would suit you, as others have said.
  13. The purpose of that Barlow is to allow them to make the claim that you can achieve 375x with this scope. You can't. The maximum power of a 70mm scope is 140x, which you can almost get with the 4mm eyepiece. I would suggest you put the barlow in your sock drawer, and get a 6mm Plossl eyepiece to use as your high power ep. If you want to, you can branch out to get other eps, but if the view through the supplied eps is satisfactory, stay with them until you learn a bit more.
  14. Assuming you have the 114mm reflector, assemble it in daytime, outside, put in the 20mm eyepiece, and point the scope at the most distant thing you can see. Wiggle it about until you have that object (chimney, church spire, corner of a flat, whatever) in the centre of the field of view, and then lock the telescope axes down. Make sure the object is in focus. Then make sure the crosshairs of the finderscope are on that object. When night comes, point the finderscope at Venus, and look through the telescope. If you haven't changed the focus since daytime, and the object you used was more than a
  15. I ordered a right angle finderscope for the same reason. I have used a mirror with my RDF occasionally to find bright objects overhead, but it's a bit iffy. Unless you are a contortionist, you will have to get a right angle finder.
  16. Try the book "Turn Left at Orion" which gives you that kind of advice, or Nightwatch, which has easy to use star maps. Be patient. Look down the sword of Orion for the Orion nebula, or up and to the right of Orion for the Pleiades, two easy Messiers. Take the time to learn the constellations and the major stars, they are your guideposts.
  17. It may have been a satellite that is too dim to be part of the list for observers. I have often seen satellites pass by. There are an awful lot of them. An asteroid wouldn't move noticeably in the short time you were watching, unless it was very, very close to the earth, and then we'd be hearing about it in the news.
  18. I disconnected the Dec motor on my controller, as it is easier and quicker to make adjustments in declination by hand.
  19. Hi, sooty, A 114mm scope is unlikely to have a parabolic mirror, as most in that size are ground spherical. That's not a terribly bad thing as long as the focal ratio is f/8 or better. However, through my own experience with such a scope you should not hope for more than about 150x which could be achieved with a 6mm ep and your 8mm will give you 125x. At these powers you should be able to clearly see bands on Jupiter and the rings of Saturn. If you can't, then as others have said your collimation is most likely off. The first time you try collimating your scope you will most likely tear out y
  20. Easy is the only way I can take it. Thanks for all the warm wishes. I'm not sure I'd be that enthusiastic about having me back. Still, it's great to be here again. Probably won't post as frequently as I did before, but I'll get some in for sure. This winter I wasn't inclined at all to go out with the scope, even though the temps were in the relatively mild -5º range. Of course, that's the range where you get the most fogging of eps, too. Oh, well, time to start putting my gear back together and make sure everything works, including the scopes.
  21. Not necessarily. That is decided by what you can afford. The advice on the focal length of the ep is the same, whatever the type of ep.
  22. The Warthog

    Hey from NWT

    You're just coming into the time when the sun hardly sets at all, and when you get lots of dark you get lots of cold, too. Best of both worlds! My son lives in Ft. Mac, and when I've visited him the sun goes to bed after I do. When it is dark, I bet you can just about touch the stars, though, eh?
  23. I've not posted here in quite a while, mostly because my life has been leading me down other paths, and there have been quite a few changes here, so I thought I would reintroduce myself. I'm a Canadian, born in Preston, Lancs, but left a very long time ago to live in the land of ice and snow. I have two scopes and am mostly a lunar and planetary observer, although I haven't done much observing in the last year. I had the great joy of having a major heart attack and quadruple bypass in January. This has cleared my schedule to make it possible to do some more observing now that I don't have to
  24. While my relatives were playing cards on my deck, I put my scope on Saturn, and in spite of the deck lighting and the fact that my skies are *****, I was able to pull in Saturn and get my family away from the gin rummy to take a look at Saturn and Titan. I had noticed a greyish spot when I used averted vision, and was able to confirm that it was Rhea, and able to show my 8-year-old great niece both of the moons. Wasn't able to see either Tethys or Dion, but with a 6" scope in bad transparency, I got the best I could. I was also able to get my neighbour to come over for a look, after the famil
  25. In any scope, the exit pupil will be whatever multiple of the f/number is represented by the focal length of the eyepiece. So for an f/5 scope, a 5mm eyepiece will give you an exit pupil of 1mm, and a 25mm eyepiece will give you an exit pupil of (focal ratio/ focal length of ep =) 5mm. This is independent of the magnification calculation.
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