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Black Knight

M31 with binoculars

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The other night I was out observing with my 10x50s, and I was taking a look at M31 (amongst other things). I could have sworn that I saw a barest glimpse of a dust lane - is that even possible to do with bins? It was pretty dark and conditions were quite good, but all the same I'm a bit doubtful that I actually did see a dust lane at all. More likely my brain filling in the blanks with what I know is there! :D

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Didn't see it in my 15x50is from a very dark site recently but that's not to say you didn't. Sure others will be along soon to confirm/comment.

It's a lovely sight in binoculars isn't it?

Stu

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Didn't see it in my 15x50is from a very dark site recently but that's not to say you didn't. Sure others will be along soon to confirm/comment.

It's a lovely sight in binoculars isn't it?

Stu

Well I'd never seen it before which is partly why I was so sceptical. Still, it is a beautiful sight :)

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Recently was at very dark site and using 8X40 bins I could see the core of M31 and arms coming from both sides. I know It wasn't just me because I got a friend who never looked at the the sky with bins or a scope before to view it and he described what I was seeing to a T.

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At a very dark site recently in 15x70s , what really stood out was the immense horizontal spread of M31.I could pick out the bright core, it's companion and differences in the surrounding halo. It really is a question of how good the seeing conditions and your eyes are.

Very often such galaxies look finer in bins against the background than magnified out of proportion to their brightness.

Nick.

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I have seen the dust lane with both my 15x70 (both my old cheapo, and the new Helios Apollo 15x70HD) and my 10x50 from a dark location. It is certainly possible. A 15x50 has a smaller exit pupil, which may make it less suitable for the faint outlying parts of M31.

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this i will try next time in dark sky,not possible from my back garden.

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I have seen the dust lane with both my 15x70 (both my old cheapo, and the new Helios Apollo 15x70HD) and my 10x50 from a dark location. It is certainly possible.

Perhaps I didn't imagine it after all then :). I'll have a sharper lookout next time! :)

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I only ever seen a tiny smudge with 10x50's.

I've only recently found out why I have been seeing double though them recently. Probably never helped lol

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Woo Hoo !! I've just found it. Its a eureka moment for me.

Yes it was only a smudge, but it is there. First time I have found it. I have a very old pair of Prinz 16x50 that was seriously out of whack. I have been trying my best to collimate them and can almost see one image now. One prism is flawed, which makes all stars look like a tick mark, but the other eye is fine.

Anyway, its a really clear night down here so I had a search round and finally got a glimpe, faint though it was. Can't wait to get some new bino's.

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Yeah, it's definitely a bit of a woohoo moment :). I've just spent a good couple of hours just roaming the skies with the bins while the scope collected some subframes. I'll probably be out again in a few minutes, although the moon is starting to get a bit bright.

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Thought I would try and get a pic with my cam and my stacked lenses, but its incredibly hard to aim at a particular star coz the FOV is so narrow. I think I managed to find Andromeda for a split second, but the slightest movement of the camera and its shot off the lcd screen.

Anyone know if you can attach a sight scope to a hotshoe.

I'll try again another night when I learn where to find it without struggling.

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I was viewing M31 last night through the binos and it looked amazing! only the second ever viewing of it. Is it possible to see M31 with averted vision without binos? i'm sure ii could just make it out.

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Is it possible to see M31 with averted vision without binos?
Oh yes indeed; it's an easy direct vision object from a halfway decent site. M33, which is a much more difficult object, is also visible to the unaided eye from a dark site on a transparent night.

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Yep, last night was amazing, even the 15x70s showed the dust lanes, we've had 7 such clear nights in a row, nice,

Nick.

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Was cloudy when I went to set-up c. 9.30pm, so decided to stay in and watch a couple of films and share some wine with Mrs Marki. Realised come 2am that it was gorgeous clear outside - the sacrfices we make for our relationships ;). Nevertheless popped out for a while with my 10x50s (pretty decent old Jenoptems), and M31 was massive (after getting my eye in, seemingly nearly filling my field of view edge to edge), and also with a suggestion of a dust lane. Glad the orignal poster made this topic becuase I have thought I saw this once or twice before on really clear nights, so good to see its not just me imagining it then:). The seeing was so clear for me that I could actually make out M33 too - never made that out from my location before.

Ended up staying out with the bins til 3am - good to see some old friends coming back - the Pleiades, Aldebaran, Capella....loving this time of year :).

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As mentioned before, M31 is a naked eye object alright. I can see it most nights with direct vision from my home here in NI (with quite an extent too) once it gets up well above the horizon. Last night it was easy to see with the naked eye at 1am. However, M31 is the only galaxy I have seen with the naked eye.

M33 is a easy pick in 10x50's from my location. Ok, it's dim looking - but still easy to locate and spot - and large appearing almost the size of the moon in my 10x50 binos.

For reference, my limiting magnitude on good nights is usually between 5.0 and 6.0 (using Ursa Minor to determine this). Sometime a little better than this in exceptional conditions - especially in winter.

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You should be able to pick out M27 in a field of stars. It's good just to sit out with a pair of bins and have a sweep. Cassiopeia's good for a sweep, the double cluster always looks stunning, nice,

Nick.

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I really enjoy sweeing up through Mel 20 in Perseus up to the double cluster, especially this time of year. Never spotted M27 in bins, though I have tried.

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I found it quite easily the other night in 15x50's, have never tried for it with binos before and was surprised how easy it was. Maybe worth another go?

Stu

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