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jeremy1

I Think I found M31 Tonight

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After a short viewing session with the scope showing my friends little ones Jupiter and it's moons I tried in vain to find M31 again with no luck. After coming inside for a drink and a smoke I decided to show my friend my new bins and thus had a quick sweep of the sky where I believe Andronema to be and after about 15 seconds wow there it was as big as you like, but take your eyes off the bins and try to look with the naked eye and there's nothing. I must be in one hell of a light polluted area not to be able to see it. I will have to wait for a better night when I have more time to try and get a good look with the scope. :smiley:

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It's a great sight! I sometimes wonder if I lose out by using a telescope rather than bins when observing andromeda.

Did you see either of the companion galaxies?

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Like I said it was a quick scan of the sky as my friend was putting his coat on and getting the kids ready to leave. I will pop out again later to see if I can get a better view but I also believe I must have too much light pollution as it is impossible to see with the naked eye.

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You should be able to see M31 in the finder scope of your Explorer 200P, It's visible in the finder of the Skyliner 200P.

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knowing it will be a clear night i double check on Stellarium as to what direction to look and as said above when you found it once you can find it in no time, mind i am lucky I have a dark site I goto.

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I had my first sighting with bino's at the weekend, had trouble finding it myself, it seemed hard to match the real stars to the ones on Google Sky, but Cassiopeia's "W" helped, once you find it its amazing, absolutely stunning, and you find it every time then, unforgettable :) :)

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Oh poo..... been outside again and I'm damned if I can find it again, but there again looking straight up with the bins was killing my neck after ten mins.

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It's a huge object with a fairly low surface brightness - you need to use a low power eyepiece really. It's a doddle to find in bins - much wider field of view. I've even had it show up in 30s exposures of the aurora borealis :)

I can see it with the Mk I eyeball here but then I have moderately dark skies around my house but even then I have to use averted vision to see it.

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Here's how I find it.

Locate Cassiopeia, and follow the arrow that the narrow part of the 'W' forms until you see a brightish star (Mirach). Above this and heading back towards Cassiopeia there are two dimmer stars in a slight arc. M31 is to the right and slightly above the second of these.

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I think I need to go out one night with a Grown up to show me what I'm doing wrong. :smiley: Like I posted I'm sure I found it but with all the kerfuffal of people leaving it was only quick. I think a nice reclining chair in the garden would do well for looking straight up. :smiley:

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i usw pegasus square then mirach then up and to the right of the y

Edited by dtr42

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I think I need to go out one night with a Grown up to show me what I'm doing wrong. :smiley: Like I posted I'm sure I found it but with all the kerfuffal of people leaving it was only quick. I think a nice reclining chair in the garden would do well for looking straight up. :smiley:

sun loungers are ideal for bin star gazing as they support your whole body and head /neck Edited by dtr42

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M31 is one of those objects that once you know where to look it is relatively easy to locate.

The actual seeing of it can be difficult depending on several factors, one of which at first is simply what you expect to see. There is so much talk of it's brightness, it's size and the fact that it is a spiral galaxy that I suspect what many peoples idea of what we expect doesn't quite match to small dim fuzzy blob that we do see. So it is ignored/overlooked.

Binoculars are I think the best thing to see Andromeda with, they collect enough light and have the field of view required.

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A short tube 80mm scope is also a good tool for m31, but I do agree on the viewing with bins though.

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viewing of m31 is quite affected by light polution but in most cases you should still be able to see the core.to find it i always start at the top left of the great square of pegasus then go one star to the left,then two up and just above that an hey presto.i had a look through the scope with a 31mm ep from a dark sky site tonight and its amazing hom much more detail you pick up than from a light polluted area.the viewable atrea basically become 10 times bigger and fills most of a 32mm 82 degree eyepiece.

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in the boot of my car are bins and a compass and note as to what i can see, trust me M31 is all ways top of the list

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