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About Skywatcher130

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  1. Earlier this year for me, February I think. I wasn't expecting to see all four moons so that was an extra bonus. I still haven't seen Saturn yet due to neighbour's trees but I have calculated using Star Walk app that by this time next month it should be clearly in sight, can't wait! Deb
  2. I'm across the river from you and would have to agree that the sky has been pretty poor lately. As per my previous post, we are supposed to be Bortle 5 here but I am not sure how accurate that is, comparing it to our dark sky location up North - Bortle 4, which is markedly different in sky quality. I did get out for a bit last night, wasn't forecast clear skies so good job I'm always 'skywatching', lol. One thing I have come to realise is that I should probably make a list of things I would like to look at prior to setting up, make better use of what little chances we do get at the moment. Deb
  3. @Stu supposedly Bortle 5 but not sure that's true as there's been a lot of new builds in our area the last few years. We ended up going up to our 'dark sky' location on Friday which is Bortle 4. By comparison it's vastly different in darkness. Put it this way, there were so many stars out I struggled to make out The Plough
  4. I will miss it too. In my south-facing garden it's been looming large for as long as I've had my telescope - I have used it to star-hop, get my bearings around the night sky, and of course, wonder at the obligatory newbie target M42
  5. Last night didn't go quite as planned as I forgot to charge power pack (assumed it would be OK, will not make that mistake again ). Anyways, I knew that the ISS was due for a flyover at 7.57 so I sat outside with a cup of hot tea and watched as it went by (5 minutes @ 72 degrees max so pretty good show). Was the brightest I had seen it yet, just wish I could photograph it. I decided to do a bit of star gazing with the naked eye. I'm still learning my way around the sky so time well spent. Orion is getting harder to spot from my garden and I saw the now tiny Mars underneath the Pleiades cluster. Cassiopeia looked great and I kicked myself for not having the scope in use as I was going to look at Andromeda with my new eyepiece. Then over to the west I could see what looked like hazy beam like shapes. Clouds maybe or a distant laser show? I was reading my Sky at Night magazine this morning when I noticed on page 47 (March edition) an article about the zodiacal lights. Well it was in the right place at the right time as described - 90 minutes after sunset. I'm wondering now if I really did see it. It looks to be clear again tonight so I will have a look and hopefully take a picture. Did anyone else spot this? Deb
  6. I have been thinking about purchasing a solar filter for my 130 Newt and have seen one online from a reputable retailer. My question is (and apologies if it sounds really stupid) is that with said filter on, can you safely observe at any time of the day, or just when the sun is lower down in the sky? My garden is S/SE facing so would make for some good views. Thanks, Deb
  7. That sounds like a great book, I will see if I can find a copy, thanks. Deb
  8. Up at silly o'clock with youngest, was looking for new apps to mess with and stumbled across 'Solar System Scope' on Google App Store. Really impressed with the graphics, the intro alone is pretty cool. 7 year old son was most impressed that you can fly around the solar system, spin planets and see where the ISS is in 3D effect. I like the Messier list and there's a basic night sky view too. Made me smile that when you click on planet Earth there were no clouds over the UK - if only! I don't normally pay for apps if can help it but upgraded to HD and no ads for £2.49, seemed a bargain for such an educational and interesting app Deb
  9. https://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/raspberry-pi-telescope/ Would this be possible in a Synscan handset? I have read a few threads about the DIY wi-fi adapters but not sure if I would get on well with using my tablet to control the scope - I like the physical feel of the handset buttons. The wire however is a nuisance! Thanks, Deb
  10. Hi all, Is there much difference in the sky quality across the seasons? It's obviously darker in the winter months therefore there's more observing time, but is a cold, crisp November night any different to a clear evening in May? Does the quality of the sky change with temperature or is it just a random combination of events that lead to the ideal seeing conditions? Do you observe over the summer months or just pack away your kit until the Autumn? Since owning my scope I have found that I really don't mind being outside in the cold as long as it's not too windy, and I'm not adverse to getting up really early, but likewise, what if anything can I expect if I were to take my kit on a camping trip in June (assuming clear skies of course ) Lastly, with all this weird weather we've been having lately (storms/floods/heatwaves!) are things really changing say as opposed to 10/20 years ago, have you noticed a difference? Thanks, Deb
  11. Regret not charging up my power pack on the only clear night last week. New eyepiece had arrived, everything set up, scope aligned perfectly then...died on me #newbiemistake
  12. 15mm BST Starguider - initial test on a distant tree was very good, can't wait to try it out properly! (and was lovely and sunny earlier too, now raining )
  13. I just thought I'd mention this incase it's of use to anyone. It's certainly the case in Staffordshire and I think in most other counties, that as well as borrowing e-books online through your library, you can also download for free a huge range of magazines. I subscribe to Sky at Night and Astronomy. You just need your library card number plus a PIN from your library and the RB digital app on your tablet. Deb
  14. Lovely! I went down at 6 to make a coffee and see if I could see Jupiter out the back. It was really bright so I quickly took my scope outside and with my 9mm could make out some detail and all four moons Felt a bit weird creeping about so early (hoping next door neighbours didn't look out their window) but worth it! Deb
  15. Skywatcher130

    Hi all!

    I've just seen that one of your photos was published in this month's Sky at Night magazine, well done!
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