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Rob63

Triangulum M33

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Tried to see M33 from my back garden last night but no joy even though I am pretty certain I was looking in the correct part of the sky (M31 M27 and M57 were a joy to look at earlier though)

Eyes were well dark adapted and there are no annoying lights about.

Is M33 possible from suburbs of a city or do you need a dark sky site?

The other possibility that crosses my mind is that I am just not experienced an observer to see such a faint fuzzy yet?

P.s. I am using a 200mm dob with 25mm BST ep

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I have been told you need a dark sky to see it i have the same problem as you. From a dark site with good seeing conditions you can see it with the naked eye.

Edited by wookie1965

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Rob very often the best way of seeing M33 is with a pair of binos. It helps to be in a dark site but a 4 or 5 degree FOV which you get with binos helps. Once you have seen it switch to your Dob with the 25mm BST and have a look with the finderscope you might pick it up with that. It sounds to me that you home site should be dark enough to see it. Well done picking up the other Messier objects.

Mark

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M33 is difficult to see, it really does need a dark sky or a good aperture. Not sure if binoculars are an advantage, it is smaller then M31, Andromeda, and also a lower brightness but still a fair size, 1 degree by 1/2 degree, so the surface brightness is very low.

Certainly would not have expected the Edinburgh skies to allow it, not sure where a good dark site would be for you.

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From my suburban Surrey  skies I only managed to see M33 on occasion in binoculars, never managed it in a scope. I finally bagged it in a scope in North Wales's dark skies. It is practically face on to us, so has a very low surface brightness.

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Had some very dramatic views from North Skye. M33 is amazing under dark sky, it's huge, appears about half the surface brightness of M31. Structure, dark lanes and signs f the spiral arms were spotted in a 10" Dob.

At home from the edge of town , it's just a dull blur,Nick.

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Same problem here tried finding m33 quite a few times probably too much lp

must get out under a dark sky especially if it can be seen with the naked eye

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A dark transparent country sky is best (no surprise there)

With my 10" Dob from my clubs's dark site, at low power and good conditions, the spiral arms are not too hard to detect, and using a UHC filter, tiny NGC 604 can be seen within the northern spiral arm (the UHC badly dims M33 itself).   From home (Southend, Essex)  just a dim smudge, just brighter than the sky background.

With my 70mm short focus refractor at 18x, from a dark site under good conditions, M33 is a not too hard to see smudge.

From town, you need a moonless transparent night (no haze) keep trying, you will succeed.

Good luck, Ed.

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When I was asked to assess the Lucksall site for SGL4 star party I took my 15x70 binos to the site to see what was visible. I was able to see M33 and M1 so the rest is history. Very often if I just want a quick grab and go without taking out the scope at home I use my 15x70 binos. M33 is one of the objects (when its visible of course) that I usually view.

Mark

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I agree with everything said here about M33.  You need a dark sky but you don't need much power.  It seems to look really good with about 100x  and that is through my Esprit 120. 

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I tend to use very low power when viewing M33. I've seen it from my back garden with instruments as small as 7x35 binoculars but it does need a dark sky and, like many of these highly extended deep sky objects, it vanishes really fast when there is any LP in the sky.

Through my scopes I find a really low magnification most rewarding with this face on galaxy - use too much power and you can find yourself looking right "through it" so to speak !

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I saw it for the first last month in the Brecon Beacons (very dark site). I'd been trying for 18 months in various locations, and with various equipment! Saw it in the 8" scope in the end. 

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M33 is very tricky without a decent dark sky. The first time I saw it with small bins from a dark site I thought I had found a comet! :grin:

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M33 is very tricky without a decent dark sky. The first time I saw it with small bins from a dark site I thought I had found a comet! :grin:

That's why it's on Messier's list.

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I've just got home from my local astro society's monthly observing session where I managed to see M33 for the first time. The site is in a rural location but with some light pollution from nearby towns, although the milky way was easily visible.

M33 was barely visible in my 200p dob with a 30mm eyepiece, just a very faint lighter patch with no structure apparent. I also observed M11 for the first time (beautiful!) as well as Neptune, although this was with another member's 12" scope. All in all, a very pleasing evening's viewing  :smiley:

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Just had a glimpse at M33, quite faint in 12" dob, but visible even without averted vision.

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I've yet to spot it in the scope, but I seem to be able to find it with bins (15x50). My method is to start at Triangulum and scan in the general direction of M33 until I see a faint patch of brightness. It really is very faint (almost like a whisp of cloud) but I can generally find it - moving the bins around does seem to make it easier to detect. (there's a bit of LP where I am but most of it is below me - I observe from a 4th floor flat). Obviously I can't see any structure but it's easy to confirm it's the right thing as it sits in a "kite" shaped asterism.

Anyway good luck with trying to spot it.

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I've seen It from my backyard both in the 5 and 10 inch with the 25mm. I've only seen it a couple of times in my new 10 inch and  not yet from a dark site, but so far there is not much in it with the 10 inch pushing it 48 mag versus the 26 mag in the 5 inch in my LP backyard. Magnification is key I think also with this one for a given aperture. Of course at a dark site the 10 inch should come  into its own. In the 5 inch it is one of those things you know it is there as a ever so subtle change in sky background darkness spread over quite an area in my backyard with some LP.  I think it is easy to miss for that reason when looking for it the first time, no bright central core in this galaxy, but once you have seen it, even if ever so subtle, it can always be found  when skies are good enough as a very subtle hint of lighting change.  I expect with any degree of more serious LP this is a no go object. Waiting for it to be high in the sky helps.

Edited by AlexB67

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I can manage to see M33 with 10x50 bins, or more accurately I think I can see it with 10x50 bins. It's one of those things that's right on the edge of visibility and the slightest haze or light pollution will make it disappear so I'm never entirely sure whether I'm really seeing it or just persuading myself that because I know where it is then that faint patch must be it. 

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I can see it with C8 in my backyard with difficulty, but in a dark site, it's quite easy in 80ED.

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M33 is a good example of where the stated magnitude (M5.7) can lead to misleading expectations. M33 is the 4th-brightest galaxy in the sky as measured by total, integrated, brightness, but because of its relatively low actual surface brightness, it's extremely hard to see in light-polluted surroundings as the above reports show. 

If you do have dark skies and a relatively large aperture scope the galaxy can show a surprising amount of detail apparently. Here is a link to a Sky & Telescope article on the galaxy which includes a further link to a detailed guide on what this object has to offer:

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/objects/deepsky/65168927.html

I'm going to spend some more time on M33 this autumn and see if I can spot any of these features, when the sky is sufficiently dark  :smiley:

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From my suburban Surrey skies I only managed to see M33 on occasion in binoculars, never managed it in a scope. I finally bagged it in a scope in North Wales's dark skies. It is practically face on to us, so has a very low surface brightness.

Having said that, just managed to see it from my garden in a 5" refractor. Just goes to show you should always keep trying in this hobby!

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Very clear in Hereford last night so I had a look for M33. It was very good in my 15x70 binos. I also looked at it with my 10" Dob with the 21mm Ethos. Again very clear although I could not make out any structure just a large faint grey blob. To be honest I think I preferred the view with the binoculars. It would be nice to view M33 through some 20x80 - future purchase maybe!!

Mark

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Thanks for all the reply's I am sure I will be able to get it eventually.

I was looking at around 11pm before the clouds started rolling in it would have been higher and further south if I had been out around 1am so I may try then.

Would a UHC filter help with galaxies?

Any recommendations for dark sky sites around Edinburgh?

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Would a UHC filter help with galaxies?

No Rob a UHC filter is no good for M33 or galaxies generally. UHC/O111 filters are used for emission nebulae not reflection nebulae or galaxies. Here is a link to using different filters for different objects. - http://www.prairieastronomyclub.org/resources/by-dave-knisely/filter-performance-comparisons-for-some-common-nebulae/

Good luck with finding M33 and getting a dark site near Edinburgh.

Mark

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