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About munchkjn

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  1. Thanks Stev74 (If that's your year of birth we are the same age) and eyespy, I'll give the guide a go. The double was split but I had trouble getting a sharp image with the focuser and the points of light were slightly distorted. Perhaps my expectations are unrealistic but I kind of doubt it as I really enjoy looking at jupiter's moons through one lens of my old 10x50 binos. I'm easily impressed!
  2. Hi Eyespy, It was my first time too on M13, I think it must need a tweak then as it was pretty disappointing for me. Conditions I thought were fairly good judging by what I could view with the naked eye (I know thats not really a good indicator but there wasn't too much twinkling). Where's the best place to get hold of a cheshire? I'm on a budget, so cheaper the better! I might try ebay tonight.
  3. I was viewing M13 and Ras Algethi double last night with a 5 inch reflector. M13 was just about OK at low power but at high power I couldn't really see any centre to the globular cluster and seemed really faint and no graininess at all. I couldn't seem to focus that well on Ras Algethi and although I split the double at 145x it just wasn't very contrasty and the colour was washed out. Conditions were pretty good with the odd cloud passing through. I just feel as though something's not right. Does this sound like it needs a collimation attempt? Never done it before btw.
  4. This is just how the moons looked last night in my binos. Cheers for sharing the image!
  5. Re. Getting new eyepieces. What sort are you thinking about? I'm wondering about that too but need to save up a bit first and hopefully got some off this for sale board.
  6. I had clear skies here too last night. I got my scope out to look for M13 the globular cluster and Ras Algethi (Double star - I think it's actually a triple but you no chance of seeing the smallest). I was mildly disappointed though, M13 was really diffuse and under high power looked nothing like the grainy image shown in "Turn Left at Orion". I found the double star and split the double but again, I found it hard to focus in on it and the colours weren't particularly stunning as I was expecting. I'm starting to wonder whether I need to collimate the mirrors as the previous owner said he hadn't needed to do it. I was going to bed at about 12.30 and as I closed the curtains I saw Jupiter rising in the North East, I couldn't be bothered to get the scope out again, so I grabbed a pair of binos and spent ages watching the moons. I could see three really clearly and I think the fourth was just to the West of the planet. I was amazed to get such a good view with just the binos though. I presume the furthest away ones were Callisto and Gannymeade and the ones close in were Io & Europa but it's difficult to tell when the positions are only in 2D. How did you get on last night?
  7. Space Oddity, You sound in the same position as me. Got my Explorer 130 in June used for a few days of clear skies (although a bit shimmery) to see Moon, Venus, Mars and Saturn. Since then its been cloudy most nights. Strangely I am also going to Portugal for a week on 31st July. I was thinking about getting a half decent pair of binos to take with me. Is the Algarve any good for viewing? I assumed there would be loads of beachfront light pollution and sea haze..
  8. I am also at just over 2 weeks, having said that the clouds parted for about 45 minutes on Monday night this week over Frome, Somerset. The sky was amazingly clear and dark I could see so much with the naked eye I was just scanning around identifying constellations I can't normally see from my location. Arcturus was blinding orange, I could see most of the stars in Cygnus and Lyra. I could even see the milyway faintly running through cygnus and down to the South and West. By the time I realised I could get my telescope out it hard started to cloud over again.... A treat nonetheless. Not sure why the sky was clear, no moon obviously. Maybe all the cloud cover has stopped some of the heat haze and general pollution going up into the upper atmosphere.
  9. Some interesting info there Olly, thanks. I agree about telly programmes, they clearly want to sensationalize any possible departure from the mainstream. However I get the impression that you have made an assumption that my comments are entirely derived from TV based research which is incorrect.
  10. Is the Universe expanding? It may be dense enough for the expansion to reverse when gravity overcomes the inertia from the Big Bang. Assuming of course you believe in the Big Bang theory. There are a growing number who consider the Big Bang as an inappropriate part of the GUT to explain a growing number of observable phenomena.
  11. Oops, Didn't see the second page on this thread... Seems I have just repeated what's already been said. Great Bear is right about a little bit of faff, but it really only takes a minute or 2 to setup and the controller allows you to centre the view really easily. The tracking is a very useful feature though.
  12. Hi Estrella, I have a Skywatcher Explorer 130P with a Supatrak mount. Although it isn't a GOTO, it does track objects at the rate the earth spins round at your location. I believe you can get one of these new for around the same price as the Skyliner Dob 150. It has a 5.1 inch aperture compared to 6 inches for the Skyliner, which means it lets in a little less light but the 130P seems to be perfectly good telescope and I wouldn't imagine there is much you could see in the dob that isn't also available to the 130P, it has good optics and is also a manageable size which may be a consideration. Hope this helps.
  13. Thanks for all the warm responses, especially those from my fellow cidermen/women!
  14. Hi, I have just started using a telescope in my back garden. I bought a second hand Skywatcher Explorer 130p with a supatrak mount. I have a little knowledge of the constellations and planets and have always had an interest in science especially physics being a Civil Engineer by trade. I am hoping to get a little help over the coming months and thought this web site would be ideal for that purpose. Cheers, Munchkjn
  15. You won't see any surface detail of Venus as it is alledgedly cloaked in a thick cloudy atmosphere. The phase change is possibly the only thing of interest in a telesope. It is probably more interesting as a naked eye object, it is a thing of beauty especially in the early evening sky.
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