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Can anyone suggest some objects for a beginner to observe during these coming months.

I have a 4" refractor and 140mm mak, and have views from south to west above about 30 degrees upwards

and south east -same height. Straight up is pretty good!

I am aware if won't be getting very dark at all, but 11.30pm ish is latest during the week.

Already done Venus and Saturn, but fancy trying to locate dso and using setting circles.

Look forward to suggestions.

Would software like Starry Night help me to decide what to see?

I have 'Turn Left At Orion' on order.


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This is personal preference but I suggest not trying to use setting circles. Its more hassle than it's worth, I tried mine a couple times and then never used them ever again. Much easier to memorise/take out sky charts and use your eyes along with a finderscope (presuming you have one).

-Beehive (M44) is an easy/large target best viewed in the finderscope or binoculars (tho getting quite far over the setting Western sky nowanights)

-M81/M82 - A brightish pair of galaxies in Ursa Major (If you can put up with some neck stretching as they lie right overhead). Hard targets in June however as you need a dark sky for galaxies.

-M13 or M92 in Hercules are great globular clusters (M13 being the king). Both ideally placed half way up the Eastern sky, darker skies the better if you want to resolve a lot of the stars but you'll see the clusters as a whole easily. Another decent globular cluster, M3 is visible further up the sky right above bright Arcturus.

As mentioned by Rob, you really need to get hold of some skymaps, astro magazine map or download stellarium (it's free and excellent!). That way you will know where to look for all of these objects.

Good Luck


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If I might make a suggestion Mand. You could include some double stars in your list of objects. Your refractor will highly suitable for that activity. There are some lovely coloured binary and optical doubles which I am certain will give you a lot of pleasure.

You could probably visit your local library and find a suitable book to take out, or even make some notes identifying where to find these objects.

I would stick to pairs with a separation of 4 arc seconds and above. You would need a fair amount of magnification, so If your scope does not have a drive, I would increase that distance to 8 a/secs + and you can reduce the mag. a bit so that they stay in the FOV a bit longer.

Of course you need to Identify at least the brightest of any pair, so I would also select Mag. 1 down to mag. 6 as a start.

Any subsequent posters are free to modify this in order to improve the info that would perhaps help a bit more.

this only a suggestion as I said. As you are relatively inexperience, this might be asking a bit much of you, but it will be good practice.

Ron. :)

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