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  1. The newly discovered black hole in the centre of the galaxy NGC 1277 has a mass 17 billion times the mass of the Sun. Its mass is much greater than current models predict. This is the best part for me: “The big surprise is that the black hole mass for NGC 1277 amounts to 14% of the total galaxy mass, instead of usual values around 0.1%. This beats the old record by more than a factor 10. Astronomers would have expected a black hole of this size inside blob-like ("elliptical") galaxies ten times larger. Instead, this black hole sits inside a fairly small disk galaxy.” http://www.scienceda...21128132116.htm
  2. 10 Billion Solar Masses ...... or...... 10,000 times the mass of the SMBH in our Milky Way “The most extreme object in the study is a super massive black hole called ULASJ1234+0907. This object, located in the direction of the constellation of Virgo, is so far away that the light from it has taken 11 billion light years to reach us, so we see it as it appeared in the early universe. The monster black hole has more than 10 billion times the mass of the Sun and 10,000 times the mass of the super massive black hole in our own Milky Way, making it one of the most massive black holes ever seen.” http://www.scienceda...21008091546.htm I always look forward to my Science Daily Tweets - especially on a Monday
  3. Thanks Stu I will try dark site options first - then look into 2nd-hand selected EP's next - and give my credit card a breather!
  4. Thanks for the great feedback - very interesting point on my 'winter sky' expectation and the focus on technology over location, location location Clearly I need to think about taking my DOB on a little road trip!
  5. I use the 2" Hotech Laser Collimator and it has worked really well. I also bought some Bob's Knobs to prevent me having to fiddle about with screws over the primary as I'm pretty clumsy. The only time it didn't work for me was user error - because I did the Secondary Mirror adjustment, followed by the Primary Mirror tweak, but forgot to double check the Second Mirror at the end. If you do those three stages - in my experience - it works fine. Hopefully it will sort itself out for you.
  6. Scope: Skywatcher Skyliner 300P FlexTube Goto EPs: Plossol PS 10mm & 25mm – I’m just starting to get EP upgrade fever now! Finder: Telrad (I hated the standard finder scope) Mount: Alt-Azimuth Mount & SynScan AZ Collimation: Hotech Laser Collimator First Light Date/Session: Tuesday 18th September 9:30pm to 11:30pm As a newbie I’ve had a few abortive sessions as I got use to the scope and its setup. I was so focused on getting the Collimation and Synscan setup right that I made the school boy error of having the 2“ and 1.25” focuser adaptors in together. Once I got that fixed (thanks to SGL!) and did a test on the moon in the early morning I was ready. I started setup at 9:30pm and once I had finished it took 20 minutes to get dark adapted and let the scope cool down. Then down to business: M31 - I am truly obsessed with M31 – so I started there and whilst it was stunning to see it for the first time (1 trillion stars, 2.3m LY’s, going to collide with the milky way in a few billion years - just WOW to see it in person ) – but there was no definition and it looked just like a fuzzy glob although the centre was bright and reasonably large in the EP. M110 – visible although not very defined – I tried the 10mm Plossol but think the LP in my area was too much for this target I then moved through the following Clusters M34/M39/M56/IC1396/M15 – I was blown away by M15 in particular and this Glob Cluster looked brilliant in the backdrop of deep space. I can’t believe this cluster is 12 billion years old – M56 is 13.7 billion years old – just mind numbing. I then spent the last 30 minutes switching between M31 and M15 A great first light experience – especially with the globular clusters being just stunning – I had to calm down my initial expectations which were high for the 300P and what it could pick out. However, I now totally understand the importance of a dark site – because even at 11:30pm on a coldish night, the LP was not great. I live in the country but in a village between two cities. One question I have is – if I was to buy some decent EPs (I’m thinking of importing an ES 24mm 82 and ES 11mm 82) – would that improve my M31/M110 type viewing to a minor or major degree. I’m assuming that it is all about the darkness – and the EPs would sharpen the experience by say 10-20% only? Anyway I’m truly addicted after my first light – so can’t wait for the cold dark clear skies of winter An early view on the Sky Watcher 300P Goto : +ves for me I do love the Synscan goto – the 2 star alignment is a few minutes on Vega/Altair with the telrad to get centred and and then slews to 2nd star and just centre it – done I like the manual slewing of the scope via the handset – it allows you set a rate between 1-9 and it is perfect for scanning around the targets you have I think it is a great scope for the money – but I think I need a much darker site than my small back garden to do it justice I have had little re-collimation to do on the 300P – admittedly I’m only moving it back and forward 40 feet (the Hotech Collimator has been good in this regard) -ves for me The base is big – not super heavy, just awkward to carry – I’m 6 foot 7 and it is a bit of a wrestle to get it out of my garage via the kitchen doors – it is doable – but if I ever got a bad back I don’t think I could move it. I hated it in the first month but I’m more use to it now – but if you are looking to buy a big DOB do think about the logistics of the base and doorways The automatic slewing noise is a little loud, if you are moving between targets – my wife has complained that the noise is too much with the bedroom window open in August above the patio I have the 300P on – but the neighbours you live close by haven’t complained so far! The standard finder scope on the 300p was disappointing and I went straight for a Telrad replacement, based on SGL feedback Other things I have found very useful as a newbie: SGL has been brilliant just in four months – the depth of sound knowledge/advice/support is great Stellarium is my go to guide – and I run through all my targets for the evening on that first – my garden is small and surrounded by houses and tall trees so it is great to plot out the trajectory of targets A red light head lamp – to protect those DA eyes
  7. Fixed now I'm using just the 1.25" focuser adaptor with EPs - thanks to all. Schoolboy error 1 Brent205 0
  8. Acey - Thanks for the input - I will run through all your suggestions, if I can't get the adaptors right (especially if you have successfully used a 1.25" on top of a 2"). I'm just pleased to have some options now - thanks again.
  9. Thanks Moriniboy - you are spot-on I now realise my schoolboy error - the Laser Collimator is 2" and my eyepieces are 1.25" .....many thanks
  10. I was hoping I wouldn’t have to post a Collimation problem here on SGL – but after my telescope arrived on 28th June I’m still not able to see post a First Light report ! I bought a Hotech Laser Collimator with my Skywatcher 300P Flextube Goto. I have followed the Hotech instructions to the letter. But when I started observing on good nights back in July and August, I could just about pick up very blurry low mag stars for Synscan 2-star alignment – that was it. After trying out various Synscan setup theories I had, I then decided to go back to basics and try for the moon manually first and work up from there. So earlier today I did a thorough collimation test – and then decided to try the moon in the clear blue early morning sky. After a struggle I picked up the outline moon using a Plossow 25 but it looked more like a blurry cloud to be honest – focusing in or using a Plossow 10 made it much, much worse. So two and half months in - I’ve either got a major problem scope or my collimation skills are woeful. I’ll give FLO a ring to see what they suggest - any ideas would be gratefully received. Thanks for any help you can give me
  11. A little introduction for my first post on SGL. I’ve always been fascinated by Cosmology and decided this was the year to invest in connecting a little more personally with the Universe. So my interest is mainly galaxies / nebulas / clusters / supernovae and I really want to push how far away I can truly see out into the universe – upto hundreds of millions of light years with darkier skies I hope? I’ve spent two months researching what I want to really study and see, and what scope/equipment to start with. This is the thank you part, because SGL has been a really great help on so many different fronts. Anyway the Skywatcher 300P FlexTube GOTO is days away from arriving from FLO and I already have a July target list, but realise that the summer months and this weather may dampen my DSO opportunities until September. I’ve also looked into the closest darker sky sites in Cambs/Suffolk. I will post my first light report in the next week or so. Thanks again for all the SGL support. Cheers Brent
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