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EQ3 Setting Circles


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Hi All,

Im having problems with using my setting circles, I have set up the mount and polar aligned as best as I can using the polarfinder software as I have no polarfinder yet.

So I calibrated my RA setting circle to Arcturus which according to stellarium is 14h 16m 11s RA +19 07' 42" Dec

Turned the scope to what should be M5 at 15h 19m 10s RA +2 02' 34" Dec

And nothing, so looking through the finderscope a 6x30 skywatcher I thought it may be miss aligned slightly but I just couldnt find anything, I tried a few other known "addresses" for galaxies and nebula but to no avail, What am I doing wrong.

Kev.

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Kev, The setting circles on most modern, mass produced mounts are way too small and inaccurate to be any use at all.

If you look at photos of old mounts, from the era when setting circles were a vital bit of equipment, you'll see they're about the size of saucers, maybe larger.

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Hi,

I set up the mount with the N facing north, Levelled it using the bubble, Found my latitude which is roughly 52' so set that, set the Dec to 90' , found polaris centred on polaris to set up the finderscope the, off set polaris as was shown in the pics on the polarfinder software - I know it isnt going to be deadly accurate but it should be as near as dont matter for me. Then found arcturus and calibrated the RA scale to that. with my 9mm eyepiece so it should be fairly central in the scope.

I haven't got a goto but do have dual motor drives.

Most of the things I have tried to find are less than a mag of 6.5 so should be visible with my skywatcher 150p, Viewing conditions were good last night with a bit of wind but nothing too strong.

Even though the scales are mass produced they should surely be accurate enough to get roughly where they need to be and then alter a little with RA and Dec to get exact positions.

Kev.

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Unfortunately modern setting circles really are awful and it is a waste of time using them! They MIGHT get you within 5° if you are lucky. Much better to invest in a finder like the Telrad (some prefer the alternative red dot type) and learn to "star hop". This is really easy to learn and, with the Telrad anyway, you will get the object in the fov of a low power eyepiece every time.

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Kev,

I saw your post a day or so ago.

I live in area of moderate light polution and also have to contend with my neighbours lights and as a consequence find it dificult to locate naked eye guide stars.

Whilst I was out to-night I did just what you did and set my setting circles on Arcturus with the intention of going to M13. I put in a 32mm EP (the widest angle I possess) and using the setting circles went straight to M13. Alright it wasn't in the centre of the field but it was there.

I must say that having complained about the light polution in my garden I have to admit that tonight I couldn't beleive how many stars I could see, definitely the best I have seen since the winter, just a shame it isn't always like this.

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Unfortunately modern setting circles really are awful and it is a waste of time using them! They MIGHT get you within 5° if you are lucky. Much better to invest in a finder like the Telrad (some prefer the alternative red dot type) and learn to "star hop". This is really easy to learn and, with the Telrad anyway, you will get the object in the fov of a low power eyepiece every time.

Totally agree with this statement. I tinkered with setting circles when I first got a telescope. I thought that although it was frustating it would eventually be worth the hassle. This turned out not to be true. They are not accurate and are pretty worthless!

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I always scout about with bino's first, even with my 8x21 pocket size bino's i can just make out the great cluster in hercules. I also check on stellarium whats about before i go out, i sketch the particular constellation and the position of anything i want to view. I've never used the setting circles on my sw150pl. learning some of the constellations is very helpful

good viewing

Adamski

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After you centred on Arcturus with your 9mm ep, did you change to a lower mag ep for M5? with a 9mm ep M5 would be difficult to notice.

A better technique is to navigate to bright star near M5, use Stellarium to show you what star patterns you have around M5, and fine tune from there.

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