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Everything posted by newbie

  1. Love it. Great contrast between the two stars.
  2. Brilliant, that's what It's all about. Last night was superb. Echo the point about Saturn!
  3. Hi all I'm struggling to find stuff in the night sky and I'm thinking that a red dot finder might be a cheap way of helping me out. Has anyone got any views on the Baader 30mm Sky Surfer III RDF, or can anyone recommend a good, reasonably priced alternative? Thanks
  4. Dragged the kids out of bed to see Saturn for the first time on boxing day at 5:30am - Managed to focus at 240x mag for the first time too - the seeing was superb! Happy new year everyone!
  5. a) where you went to get advice This forum. I was lucky to find it before investing. Also spoke to the chap in the local camera shop who is a Skywatcher dealer but he knew very little so the advice I received here was brilliant. how helpful (or not) was the advice Fantastic, including advice from your good self AB. Critically, it helped manage my expectations in terms of what I could expect to see. Initially I expected to see galaxies and nebulae through the scope in all their colourful glory. This forum gently made me learn that that wouldn't be the case, but that there was so much else to enjoy and it was about WHAT you are seeing. The advice also helped me to look at bigger mirrors instead of motors - advice that I am most grateful for. c) what sort of scopes did you look at SW 1145 SW with motor drive SW 130P SW 150P d) what did you buy SW 150PL e) why did you buy what you bought Longer focal length for greater mag Good size mirror whilst maintaining portability f) how has it worked out - what do you like with it/dislike with it Love it! Easy to set up and operate - seen some wonderful things. Would like decent 15mm EP to add to those EP's that came with the scope. Like the EQ mount.
  6. I don't live a million miles from Dalby forest - any idea when the next event will be? Cheers
  7. I have this scope. Great piece of kit. I'd agree with the advice re. a moon filter - gotta get one else your eyes will hurt! I have been extremely frustrated by the poor quality of the 10mm eye piece supplied. Effective magnification with supplied EPs / barlow is only 120x as the 10mm is unusable with the barlow (at least from my location) so I would look to save up and spend a few quid on a decent EP that will up the mag for planetary viewing in particular. (I am still deciding what to get with my 'under the bed savings scheme that the wife doesn't know about') lol I'm not suggesting that you need to splash out immediately though - there is loads to see with the 25mm, barlow, and 10mm without barlow. Enjoy!
  8. Aperture, aperture, aperture!...and forget imaging (for now)
  9. It takes me about 5 minutes to set up my 150PL on its EQ3-2 equitorial mount, point it to north and start viewing - certainly no longer. The PL is a lot longer than the P so if space is a problem then consider the shorter, but otherwise I can't see any advantage of the P over the PL, other than perhaps stability on of the scope on the mount for imaging but as I understand it, if you are serious about imaging then you don't want the EQ3 anyway. I thought I'd want to get into imaging straight away but there is so much to enjoy and learn without this expensive aspect of the hobby that I would concentrate on enjoying the views for now.
  10. I found this site just before buying my first scope and was pleased I did. It's the brilliant people who contribute that make it the success it is, and thanks to the hosts that make it possble. I think the threads could be tidied up a bit - there are loads of similar threads that could be put into the same folder - e.g. a folder for all threads that are about "what first scope should I buy" I like the idea previously posted above about a mobile version of the site too. The site is much more than just advice though, and I like the threads that are just about daft things like "What's the weather like where you are" - feels like a community. Keep up the good work everyone!
  11. Great views of M42 last night but Mars was tiny! Couldn't achieve focus with anything more than my 10mm EP. The supplied 10mm EP and barlow combi just doesn't seem to work, which I assume means too much magnification for the conditions? I'm looking to add an EP that will give me more magnification for planets, but not so much to be unusable. Any ideas? I was thinking of something like this, and attaching my barlow to give me 160x or the straight 6.4mm version giving me 187x. Meade 4000 Series 15mm Super Plossl Eyepiece 1.25" Which would be generally best for UK conditions, and are the 4000 series any good? Thanks, in anticipation of valued advice as always.
  12. Hi there Great post! I live near Hull too, and the skies were fantastic on Thursday night. I was on a works Xmas night out and was tempted to get the scope out when I got home at 1am. Wise move not to however, considering the amount of red wine consumed:D. So last night I had it all planned out - first view of Mars at 10pm, then up at 5am to see my first view of Saturn and...... Cloud, cloud, and more blooming cloud!! Hope tonight is better.
  13. Beautiful image, truly stunning. Congratulations!
  14. Others have covered the technical bits so I won't add anything on that, but just to say that I have a 150PL on an EQ£ - 2 mount and have been delighted with it so hopefully this will give you confidence with your impending purchase. Really excellent for a qualty into into this fascinating hobby. Enjoy!
  15. Thanks everyone. I think my expectations of what I was expecting to see were too high! (I thought it was mag 5.2!). I will look more carefully next time out.
  16. Hi folks Great night's viewing last night but despite trying to get my first view of this galaxy I couldn't find it Got great views of Andromeda and found Triangulum constellation easily enough, but not a hint of the galaxy. Anyone got any tips on finding it (apart from getting a go to!). Is is a great deal fainter / smaller than Andromeda? Cheers
  17. Orion gets higher in the sky each evening from my back garden - awesome sight. Won't be long now before I will be able to see M42 at a sociable time!
  18. I have a SW 150PL on an EQ3-2 mount - easily strong / stable enough for the scope. People will probably advise that you need a better mount for imaging though if you are looking to get into that...
  19. Sounds like you just need practice with the equipment rather than there being anything wrong with the equipment itself. As for the barlow - give it another shot, I find it works great with the 25mm EP supplied (but not with the 10mm). You do need to be very precise when focussing, you can soon shoot past the point of focus and back out of focus.
  20. Blimey guys, I'll stop whinging then!! Day 8 now - not a star in sight:(
  21. I'm fed up. 7th night in a row that the cloud has been too thick to see anything! I wonder what the record is for the number of cloudy nights in a row? Having to resort to watching England try and play football - it would be more interesting watching the clouds!
  22. I was looking for advice on my first scope a couple of months ago and got some great advice on this forum. You will find though that everyone has different views, they are all relevant, and it all becomes very confusing! In the end I went for a Skywatcher explorer 150PL which has (so far) proved a great buy. In terms of maintenance, it hasn't needed any. I have tested the mirrors and they haven't needed collimination at all. It's very easy to set up and use and I've seen great views of the moon, Jupiter, M42 and M31, all from my back garden despite some lousy cloudy skies over the past month. I can see me wanting a 16" dob at some point in the future, but then isn't that just the case with everything - got to have bigger/better! but the SW 150 is a great place to start.
  23. Quote "the difference between the skywatcher 10mm e/p and the meades is significant (because the skywatcher 10mm e/p is a bit carp)" I'm inclined to agree with your assessment of the supplied Skywatcher 10mm EP. I get great views with the 25mm, and 25mm+barlow but the 10mm on it's own isn't as good as the 25+barlow combi, and I've been unable to focus anything with the 10mm+barlow.
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