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Everything posted by Aronnax

  1. Oh, the shame. Yes, yes I've done that. Once. only once (so far). The worst thing about it is how long it took me to work out what the problem was. I remember laughing out loud at myself while calling myself a few choice names Clear skies!
  2. I'm quite a fan of M35 - M38 too. Four nice open clusters not too far from M46 & M47 if OC's are your thing. Thanks for the write up on here, I realised I need to make these Messiers (46 & 47) a target for my next session while they are in a reasonable viewing position! Clear skies.
  3. Thanks for all the M33 tips folks, I'll hopefully get a glimpse of it at some point when the weather allows... might have to escape the suburban skies, or at the very least stay up until the neighbours have all turned their lights off if I still can't find it! Clear skies.
  4. Thanks very much I didn't have a telescope then, but I remember being astounded at the fact it was visible to the naked eye, and through binoculars... wow. Hopefully there will be something like that again in our lifetime! Clear skies.
  5. Oh yes, I'll find it in low mag, first. Just wondering what people find works well for this galaxy. I do wish for power cuts on cloudless nights...
  6. Thanks for the reply I only have the stock 25mm in between the 30mm and the 16mm. The 16mm gives a reasonable 82° apparent FOV, but doesn't quite rival the 100° you get from the Ethos. But with the lower mag, it's not too dissimilar actual FOV, so I think that's possibly my best bet at the moment(?). I do keep hearing that M33 really does like dark skies, which I didn't have last night, so will bear that in mind. Half the fun is in the hunt anyway Clear skies.
  7. Thanks very much, I try and find something new each time, and I've got just under two-thirds of the Messier catalogue to go, among other items so it's still a straightforward (ish) task... Trapezium: To be honest I didn't look for more than four, so that's all I recall seeing <makes mental note for next time>. It was then I realised that the mist was really starting to come in so the viewing conditions weren't optimum. I'll make it a target next time, so thanks for the inspiration
  8. Imagine my joy at looking out last night and seeing twinkly things in the sky! Last night I wanted to make sure I got a view of comet Lovejoy C/2014 Q2 while I could. It's been a long while since I managed to see a comet (Hale-Bopp... I said it was a long while). So out came the scope and in went the lowest mag EP I have (a 30mm Skywatcher Aero giving 40x mag). It didn't take long to find comet Lovejoy clearly in the finder scope close to 41 Ari, and looking at it through the EP gave a clear view of the central glow of the comet. Unfortunately I couldn't detect any tail structure due to the amount of light pollution and the dew / mist that was starting to descend. Still I had a good while staring at it and enjoying the comparative brightness of the object compared to some of the galaxies that I've been trying to hunt of late! After a good while there, I moved to the Orion nebula and it's companion (M42 & M43) for a revisit of an old favourite. As well as the wonderful view through the 40x mag EP, I popped in the 75x EP (a 16mm SW Nirvana) and found this to be a good EP to frame the visible nebula well, with a perfectly clear view of the trapezium, and clear dark lanes in the gas. I may even have imagined some colour, but this may have been wishful thinking. Next was to find M78 the other side of Orion's belt for the first time. I managed to clearly see this nebula which appeared to be concentrated on two more prominent stars, but think a revisit is in order under better conditions to really appreciate this one. While I was in the neighborhood I happened to put the scope on Betelgeuse... I'd never really appreciated how orangey-red it appears. I've been working my way through the Messier catalogue and had hoped to find the Triangulum Galaxy (M33), but didn't manage it last night. I think the sky conditions weren't really suited to me tracking down that one. Has anyone got any tips for this one in the meantime? All in all, a nice hour or two outside before the mist started to sneak up on me and call an end to the night out. Very pleased to have got a view of comet Lovejoy, and M78 for the first time, and even more pleased to be able to get out at all given the winter weather! Clear skies all.
  9. No problem It may well be bright, but not too bright to observe. They do have their place I'm sure, but they certainly wouldn't be top of my list of priorities. I have an 8" scope, and don't feel the need for a moon filter at the moment, even with all that extra light being gathered! Maybe at full moon, but that's not a good time to be looking at features on the moon anyway...
  10. Is there a particular reason you were thinking a moon filter? I think my advice would be to get used to the scope, and learn your way around the skies (TLAO seems to be highly recommended there!)... then you'll have a better idea of what it is you want to look at more, and what it is you'll need next. I think the only 'must have' is some collimating device, for when that needs doing. And most of all enjoy the exploration of the skies together
  11. Without being there on the night, it's hard to give definitive suggestions beyond 'have you got the focus right?' (which you say you have), and 'are you sure you're pointed at Jupiter?' (again, you think that's not the issue). So I'll give you my impressions of planetary viewing (Jupiter in particular) through my SW200p Dob... I now have upgraded my eyepieces, but I'll talk about my experiences with the stock 25mm, and 10mm EPs that come with this scope. I found both the EPs gave reasonable views of Jupiter, although the 10mm EP is the inferior of the two in terms of viewing quality (but by no means junk). The first time I got the scope out I had Jupiter in mind, and it didn't look too great. The reason for this was that the scope had not had sufficient time to cool, and was affecting the views quite a bit. After letting the scope get down to ambient temperature things improved nicely. In the 25mm EP Jupiter is very small, but is a definite disc, with banding visible. In the 10mm, the image is a bit larger, but far from fills the field of view. With those two EPs I swapped around depending on conditions which view I preferred, the smaller, but sharper 25mm, or the slightly larger, but less clear 10mm. Either way, you need to give it time. It's been mentioned above, and I find it really is true... the longer you look at this small disc, the more you observe. The moons will always appear as just bright dots, never as a disc or with any features visible. Persevere, try again on another night, and take time to soak up the details, and experiment with both the EPs. So double check: the focus; what you are looking at; scope is cooled; the viewing conditions; the amount of time you give this planet at the EP. I hope that helps a little! And remember you can always try and get some local help at an astro society or similar. Clear skies
  12. I've got the Leo galaxies (I love the triple galaxy), and (from memory) the Glob around Virgo/Coma, but just haven't had the time to sit and work out which Galaxy us which in that Virgo cluster! It'll be a rewarding night or two out when I do though
  13. It's a grand total of 36 for me, so just under a third. That's in two years. Once I get the Virgo galaxies cracked, that will increase the total in a big jump! Like some other people have commented, there are a few surprise omissions from my list, like M101. I'll have to correct that next night out, don't know how that one snuck by! It's those southerly ones that will be most problematic for me, and will definitely need me to find a suitable site to observe.
  14. I know this is a very old thread, but just wanted to say that this image helped me to identify L100 during an observing session, so thanks
  15. I have the SW200P on a Dobsonian mount, you can find my unboxing thread here: http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/179215-skywatcher-200p-dob-full-unboxing-review/ It has a picture of the scope against a (standard sized) door if that helps at all with getting to know the size of the thing. Have fun choosing!
  16. Think of it as rotated 180°. This is handy when you have a 'right-way-up' map of the sky/moon etc as you can just turn the book around so it's upside-down to match what you see at the eyepiece. Clear skies
  17. As above really... if you tell us your telescope, it might be easy to identify. If it's a fairly new one then the standard will be 1.25" Clear skies
  18. I'd first check to see if the red dot finder is properly aligned. Try and do this in the day on something that doesn't move!What time were you looking at the object, and in what direction? The reason I ask is that if it was not long after sunset and West, then that may well have been Venus, and you won't see a huge amount there. If you were looking in the East slightly later, Jupiter would be the bright object in the sky, and you would be able to make out a little more than a bright dot. When you saw stars, were they pin-points of light or blurry? Clear skies
  19. Welcome to the forum I have the SW200P Dobsonian. It's a great scope (at least for me ). I did a blow-by-blow unboxing thread of mine which you may find useful(?) http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/179215-skywatcher-200p-dob-full-unboxing-review/ Clear skies...
  20. Welcome Devin! I can't help too much in identification, but with regards the RA not working, it may be that this is actually OK. The RA setting circle should be able to move independently so that it can be accurately set. Is there a little grub-screw on/near it that you can tighten to lock the dial down? Or is there a hole where it looks like one might have been but has been lost? Hope that makes sense, although I may not have understood the description quite right. Stick some pictures up for people to have a look over, and I'm sure the assembled minds can help you out! Clear skies
  21. That's precisely how I imagine it; I 'drag the sky' around rather than the tube. I too went from an EQ mount to a Dob. I too was worried that I would not get along with the nudging. The first session out completely washed away my concerns, and I don't miss the EQ mount at all. The speed of set-up, and ease of use more than makes up for a single twist-knob-to-track. I'm a convert, if you couldn't already tell!
  22. Like this one: http://www.stark-labs.com/craig/lybar/lybar.html Might give it a go myself, it looks easy to make, eve for a klutz like me!
  23. It does look like that region. Good annotated photo here: http://www.lpi.usra.edu/resources/lunar_orbiter/bin/info.shtml?365 (flip the image up/down for the same orientation). Is that what it is juliosky? That's number 54 on the Lunar 100 in the bag for you Clear skies!
  24. Ah, you are looking to get into astrophotography, that opens up a whole new world of equipment which other people are far better qualified to comment on than me, and may change some of the recommendations made so far (?) Clear skies
  25. Hi there, out of interest, what is it about a Dob mount that you don't want? In general, they will be cheaper, lighter, and take up less space overall than an EQ mount, which fits with your cost, size, and weight criteria better than say an EQ mount. Having owned a 4.5" reflector on an EQ mount, and an 8" reflector on a Dob mount, the dob actually takes up less space when stored away, and is certainly lighter to move than an appropriately sized EQ mount for the scope. I am certainly not saying you are wrong, as it is a personal decision, I'm just curious - and apologies if you've stated your reasons already but I've missed it Clear skies!
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