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Xgaze

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  1. Thanks for this, really useful and makes perfect sense. I will certainly have a play with the twist eyecup and see if it helps. Six nights on Exmoor, Alas, only last night offered the opportunity to see anything! Just managed to see M57 for a few minutes and show friends, which was nice. On to the next session... Regards, Tony
  2. Thanks Zermelo! Yes, I have the SW 150 DOB. I admit, I do need a bit more time with the BST. Perhaps having more time adjusting the eye relief will help, is this what you are calling "guard"? Is that the screw threaded end on the BST? Apologies if I don't reply immediately, camping on Exmoor again! Hoping it's going to be clearer tonight! Best, T
  3. We'll done for finding the time and getting back to it! Great report. Love the photo of Saturn from your phone, you've inspired me to have another go! I like the idea and practice of flirting with astrophotography on a budget!! The ring nebula is great! So looking forward to visiting it again in a dark skies area which, hopefully, will be tonight! Best, T
  4. Great reading! Noted a couple of those for tonight! Can I ask, what's a few strap?
  5. Thanks John, Out on Exmoor again tonight a week's camping there. Hoping it's clear enough! Will check out Mirach's Ghost, thanks for the heads up! Best, T
  6. Welcome Heater! This is a really useful and friendly forum!
  7. Hi all, Set up in the car park behind my house. Not a bad spot, away from houses, good views from NE around to the SW. North/Northwest blocked by our large Hawthorne. Started with a lovely few minutes admiring Saturn. Then up and tried to find some DSO's first attempt at M57 ring nebula but couldn't locate. The moon was very bright, too bright to view - wanted to maintain my adapted eye's! Had a mess around with my 32m plossil what fun that is, not nearly as good as the Exmoor Dark skies but a brilliant EP. Pointed it over to the Mirach star to find M31 Andromeda. Finding this with ease now, should have looked at more around that area but got distracted by, what I'm pretty sure was ISS flying past, managed to catch it on the EP but was too quick for me to focus. A little annoyed I'd now lost sight of the original target, I though I'd have another go at the Ring Nebula. So glad I did! Finding it fairly easy this time, I finally spotted the fuzzy donut shape and found it quite exhilarating! The dark patch in the middle of the nebula was quite evident with the stock 10m EP and, I have to say it again; the 8m BST didn't seem any better! Perhaps it is me, not getting used to it yet? The more I looked, aiming the target to the top of the view, allowing it to move across the EP then a slight nudge of the DOB to keep in view, I was able to pick out more and more, sometimes looking away from the nebula using my peripheral vision allowed better details. No colour but what treat it was! After failing on a couple more targets, I decided to have a good look at Jupiter which had now climbed high and bright. Comparing it between the stock 10m EP & 8m BST. I did, this time find the BST had the edge however, because it doesn't have irate the "rubber ring" around the end, as the stock EP does, I found the BST harder to view as steady. Is the anything I can do about this? I know there is an adjustable threaded bit on the end of the BST, tried moving this out as far as possible and having a play but it just didn't give as steady a view as the stock EP. Although, when settled it did give a bit better detail of Jupiters banding. The moons also lovely, punchy spikes of light. Great short session, really pleased!
  8. I saw something very bright around that time moving fast and constant. I pulled away from M31 to view it. I guess this was my first sighting of ISS? Very bright and too fast for me to track and focus at the same time!
  9. Great report! Couple of things noted, thanks! Love the sketches... I'm off to find a black, spiral bound sketch book!
  10. Apologies *Wookie! Damn autocorrect!
  11. Thanks Woolie! It was the second night of trying and plenty more perseverance. I suspect the dark skies of Exmoor really helped too! Really enjoy reading you reports too, I find them inspiring!
  12. Thanks Pixies! Still buzzing over it all. Just wondering, want does BST stand for? I know you meant the 8mm StarGuider EP but don't know what that acronym means. T
  13. Hi all, Going to attempt my first report, only owned and been using a telescope for two weeks! (SW Heritage 150 Dobsonian stock EP's 25mm &10mm & StarGuider 8mm. & Astro Essentials 32mm.) So, please be kind! Well, wow! What an experience!! Massive understatement! Camping with the family in the Doone Valley for two nights. Viewing obscured, as expected, particularly the horizon East and West but the night sky was incredible! The moon made its way over as a few light objects speckled the sky here and there. One advantage with being in the valley was the moon drops suddenly and quickly and allows the dark to reveal the Milky way in all its glory. Only really managed shortish sessions around 1.5hrs. seem to find myself changing EPs too many times which in the dark, takes some getting used to! Friday Night Began with a couple of double stars ALBERIO ALMACH Great views of both, nice to note the colour diffences. The dew was setting in and also thick fog. Didn't seem to hamper vision but needed to be aware of dampness. Dob was mounted on a solid small wooden table. Tried my new 32m EP. Totally blown away!! Eye was completely filled with stars, breathtaking. Didn't seem to need a target at this point, happy to just slowly slew around and drinking it all in! Thanks to those that recommended that EP for these skies! Surpassed any expectations! Felt ready to target some DSO's... Decided to aim for a Globular Cluster. M13 in Hercules wasn't easy to find at first using the Lazer pointer, particularly as it had started to condensate. Perseverance prevailed! What a buzz! Smiling broadly to myself as it came I to view, even more so when I swapped the punchy, wide 32m for the 8mm EP. Okay, these things didn't show much detail, I think I could just about make out one or two individual stars within the cluster, but training the eye, keeping focus and allowing my brain to interpret what is there has been an invaluable and profound experience! Ended the season with a quick view of Saturn which had now risen just above treeline. I have to say; I didn't really notice the difference between the stock 10m EP that came with the scope and the £49 StarGuider 8mm !! In fact, if I had to choose I think the stock EP had the edge!! SATURDAY Fog and dew even heavier! Found that sitting comfortably is so important! Need to sort this before the cold nights set in or, my back will suffer! Finding the right posture felt like it had added magnification and clarity!! Went for the double cluster in Perseus NGC869/884 these were a joy to scan with the 32mEP picking out some brilliant details and individuality. Then decided to go for some galaxies, not really expecting much luck, I was using Stellarium but having to use spectacles for looking at my phone, then trying to glance over them to look at the sky and use a dodgy, steamy pointer, I didn't think I manage much!! Supprised as I found M81 BODES Aain, little detail but a huge sense of achievement! Gazed for a while, swapping between 10mm & 8mm EP. Again, not much different bit what a show! This was feeling was met again with M51 WHIRLPOOL Smiling to myself now seeing my second galaxy ever! And allowing my mind to bathe in the bewildering but fascinating and enchanting craziness of it all! At this point, I could see Cygnus behind me and thought, ANDROMEDA ! Okay, again these things are just smudges really but it's still ANDROMEDA! Very large, I thought in comparison to the other two? Mind perhaps playing tricks as I thought I could see the odd pathways. Totally hooked on my new hobby, something I've always been awestruck since as far as I can remember, quite profound really and terribly exciting!! Camping for a week on Exmoor next week! Hoping for a few clear nights. Thanks for reading, apologies in advance for my lack of terminology and any mistakes. To that end, I'm happy for any feedback ,tips and advice. Best, T
  14. Thank you all for your replies. I left on Friday afternoon and so, frustratingly i was unable to read any posts until now! No phone reception but luckily, Stellarium was working on GPS! I'm going to attempt a proper report in the section but can confirm; it was a spectacular two nights viewing!! Mind truly blown, stimulated and a huge amount of processing and learning. I managed to see some of the objects advised in your replies including some DSO's. Although, a few mentioned by you all i did not see and have noted for the next, highly anticipated session! So, thanks again! Some successes: M13 NGC 869/884, M81 Bodes M51 whirlpool did not expect these!! Also Andromeda (okay, no detail but WOW!) As well as.a few other objects... I now feel I've begun learning so much, supprised myself and am completely excited and enthused! Much appreciated, T
  15. Hello all, Firstly, just to say thanks to all on here that have offered me help and advice so far... What a great bunch of people! So, I'm off camping in Exmoor national park for two nights today. Really excited! I have a Heritage 150 Dob. Had my best session yet last night, viewing the gas giants and a couple of double stars. Was somewhat hampered by views to the North and West. Also, found I needed to plan better. Although, the time at the eyepiece is providing invaluable. I'm not expecting the clearest views of the horizon tonight but might venture out of the Doone Valley if family commitments allow! Would really like to test my new EPs a 32mm and StarGuider 8mm in addition to the stock EP 10mm & 25mm on some DSOs. Is this wishful thinking? I'm quite realistic that I'm not Hubble! But would love to see some globular clusters perhaps nebulae and maybe a galaxy or two, is this realistic? If so, any targets please. Have already begun a plan that includes being prepared with somewhere to place the DOB, ready for dew, red torch, warm-up/cool down. And a list of a few double stars that, I hope, are achieveable. Read the thread on here about session planning kindly and brilliantly written by Nick, very useful and lots noted. Just hoping some of you might give a few extra targets and tips? Many thanks, T
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