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Old Vixen 80M As Good As Ever!


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My obsy is set up imaging M101 in LRGB (my first proper attempt at full colour - wish me luck!), so I spent the evening setting up my dad's old Vixen 80M/Polaris mount on the patio. "I'll kill some time looking at Jupiter" I thought like a smug imager. Well, I've just had that smug look wiped off my face. :)

I'd forgotten just how nice that scope is to look through. I've got little else to compare it with, in terms of planetary viewing, but it's about f/11.4 I think (I am using a 12.5 ortho, though), and is instantly better for observing Jupiter than my honking great MN190, which is similar focal length but f/5.3. Until now I'd wondered what all you observers were on about with your f/gagillion focal ratios but now I get it!

I'd also forgotten how wonderful Jupiter (specifically) is to look at. Everyone - myself included thinks of Saturn as the planet with the "Wow Factor" for newbies, but Jupiter really is special.

When it comes to observing, I've always been a flitter - "seen that, what's next" sort of thing - but I've left the scope pointing at Jupiter, and will return to it as long as the clouds stay away. I want to get to grips with this thing you guys talk about, where the longer you patiently watch, the more detail you can discern. I've made out two bands so far. I guess one is the NEB, but I'm not sure what the other is.

Anyway, this is fun, and I should definitely do it more often.

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have learnt from reading posts on here that patience and perseverance will be rewarded when it comes to observing plus some decent dark skies for those dso's although they are not that important for the Moon and planets.

Jupiter is looking good this time around, glad you got to have a good look at it :)

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I am always taken aback when I get a look at Jupiter or some area on the Moon with a decent refractor. You just can't beat that obstruction-free light path for contrast and definition.

I have some fairly nice telescopes, but sold a little refractor that I had, years ago. It would be nice to trade, let's say, two of my Newtonian reflectors for a decent refractor.

Jim S.

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