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Everything posted by BeanerSA

  1. Sombrero (M104) is quite a sight, but if you were disappointed in with M42, you aren't going to like M104 very much. You might like the Sculptor Galaxy (NGC 253) when it returns later in the year. That is nice and high and shows some detail. I've not personally seen the southern Pinwheel, but Centaurus A is coming up soon, and you should be able to make out the faint fuzz there. Andromeda is well past it's best for the year.
  2. The Andromeda Galaxy is pretty low on the horizon for us southern viewers. At the moment it is already below the horizon by the time sun sets, but don't worry, it will be back later in the year!
  3. You won't ever see Sirius as anything more than a point of light. If you are expecting to see a full disc (as some new observers often do), that just wont happen.
  4. That would be the barely visible Sigma Octantis.
  5. I think your handpiece will do a 'best of the night' tour.
  6. I guess it depends how good your eyes and your skies are.
  7. Southern Hemisphere observers have the two brightest clusters in the night sky. 47 Tucanae/NGC104/c106 is a mag 4.0, 30' dia glob just off the side of the Small Magellanic Cloud. It has a very dense core. Omega Centauri/NGC5139/C80 is a mag 3.7 36.3' dia in the southern constellation Centaurus. Under dark skies it's a naked eye object. It's also home to the biggest (AFAIK) nebula in the night sky, The Eta Carina Nebula. At 2°x2°, it's a struggle to fit in an eyepiece. At mag 3.0 it too can be seen with the naked eye.
  8. Where did you read that? That is not even close to true. After the slightly easier setup for a dob, both require the same amount of effort to locate objects.
  9. It will automatically track objects with just the motor.
  10. It is a rather good book. I have a PDF copy, and I found (and purchased) an '"as new" copy in a local second hand bookshop just last week!
  11. Have you aligned your finderscope to the main scope? If not, this is best done during the day. Pick a tall tree or mobile phone tower, about half a kay away. Put in your 25mm eyepiece, and try and find the very tip of the tree or tower. Then change to the 10mm and centre the tip in your eyepiece. Then move to the finderscope, and adjust it so the crosshairs are on the tip of the tree or tower. Your finderscope is aligned! Orion Nebula is pretty easy to find now, but make sure you try looking at it with the 25mm eyepiece first.
  12. An 8" dob is a pretty good allround scope. Certainly some smaller scopes give better views of planets, but at most other celestial objects, they rule. For easy to find DSO's the Orion Nebula is easy to find and very bright. 47 Tucanae/NGC104 around this time of year is a great object. The Carina Nebula is a beauty but is massive so it's difficult to fit in the eyepiece. Jupiter is starting to come up around 2300hrs now, so it's worth hanging around for that. Centaurus A, a galaxy is also coming up around midnight, and might make a nice challenge for you. Do you have access to a pair of binocu
  13. Stellarium is a good planning tool. The widefield view is much easier to work with on a PC or Laptop. There is also a Stellarium app for Android, that costs a couple of bucks but is well worth it. If you do have an Android phone consider Mobile Observatory (about $8) or for iOS one of the Sky Safari apps, which range from free to about $50. I use Mobile Observatory, and those that use Sky Safari seem to love that too.
  14. Mars is going to peak at around 13°, so you might need a clear field or hilltop to see it. I can't see anything wrong with just using the 6mm. But that's just me.
  15. Hello. Do you have a PC or Laptop you could install Stellarium to? This will show you "what's up". http://www.stellarium.org/ Whereabouts are you?
  16. Have you considered a SkyWatcher Star Adventurer. You could do AP with the camera gear you already own, and the same mount will support a small scope (80mm or so)?
  17. When I move the dob, I imagine I am trying to pull the object back into view. That seems to work for me. 90° finders really need some sort of zero-mag finder as well, as it's hard to "sight" down the side of a tube with a 90° finder.
  18. BeanerSA


    We've chatted on IIS. The community is more active here, so enjoy.
  19. It's currently 720,000,000km away. That we can see it at all seems amazing to me!
  20. This appears to be a Bird-Jones and are notoriously difficult to collimate.
  21. Theoretically, you would need to know which line of RA is on the meridian, and whether your object is east or west of it. Practically, you look skywards until you see a star you can identify, and you can only swing the DEC one way and put it in view.
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