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planet searcher

planets

26 posts in this topic

good evening everyone. I have just been lent a very nice telescope and so far all i have seen is the moon, amazing by the way. but I'm hoping to see a lot more. so if any one could give me any tips that would be great. many thanks . my scope is a celestron sky prodigy 130 

Edited by planet searcher

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Hi there,

welcome to the forum.  Why don't you post some details about your telescope - someone will have used one similar and can advise you.

John

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Welcome - glad my dodgy description helped you get here :D:D

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Hi Planet Searcher, welcome to the forum!

There'll be many folks on here who will be able to advise you better then I can but I'll see if I can help.

If you look West on an evening you'll see a bright object to the left of the setting sun, this is Venus, which will be the brightest object in the sky until it sets after 7ish. If you look "up and left" about the distance of an outstretched-spread palm you'll see a dimmer object looking a bit orange-red, this is Mars.

Sadly you may not see much through your scope while it is bright and obviously it'll depend on your scope.

Give it a few months and looking South Jupiter will be visible again, that's always impressive to look at, was amazed the first time I saw its moons through my scope!

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ah right, so you cant see the planets all the time then. you can tell I'm new to this 

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Hello and a warm welcome to the SGL. Download the free app Stellarium. Put in your location and it will show what is available from your site. You can see Jupiter in the SE but it will require an early rise, say about 5 am.

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thank you for the app advice.  i was wondering why mu scope wouldn't pick jupiter up. so if i go back out early in the morning will it be visible then ?

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9 minutes ago, planet searcher said:

ah right, so you cant see the planets all the time then. 

That's right, they come and go as their/our orbits take them closer to us and further away around the other side of the Sun.

Also currently you'll get some nice views of Jupiter in the early mornings, best time to view at about 14 degrees altitude in the south at 6am right now. It's not huge right now but you'll be able to see some nice features including the great red spot (called GRS round here) when it's transiting and the equatorial belts. The Galilean moons are also a delightful sight.

Mars is a good signpost to Neptune at the moment, and Venus will be too in a week or so. You'll struggle to see more than a point in the 130 but worth the hunt.

Finally Uranus should be showing a blue green disc at about 45 degrees altitude high in the south at 6pm.

Enjoy, and clear skies.

Edited by johnfosteruk

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1 minute ago, planet searcher said:

thank you for the app advice.  i was wondering why mu scope wouldn't pick jupiter up. so if i go back out early in the morning will it be visible then ?

It will nice and high in the sky. Orion is stunning in the evening at this time of the year.

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so when i go out at night all i can see is the moon. the scope i have got at the minute is computerised, so is only picking up uranus, which i then could not see, so if i go out early tomorrow, will it then pick up other planets ?

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5 minutes ago, bunnygod1 said:

It will nice and high in the sky. 

And unmissable as it, like Venus in the evenings is currently the brightest object in the morning sky. Apart from the big light bulb moon in a week or so

Edited by johnfosteruk

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3 minutes ago, planet searcher said:

so when i go out at night all i can see is the moon. the scope i have got at the minute is computerised, so is only picking up uranus, which i then could not see, so if i go out early tomorrow, will it then pick up other planets ?

Try going out just before sunset tomorrow, picking Venus on the hand controller and seeing what you find. If it doesn't then maybe it isn't aligned properly (or it's cloudy) as it really is bright. If that's the case, eyeball it in the SW/W and then undo the clutches and find it in the finder scope. Then - Enjoy

Edited by johnfosteruk

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the telescope I've got at the minute, is very good, but it wont log on to venus, it tells me there are not enough stars. I've got someone coming to give me a demo on friday night, so fingers crossed it will be clear just like tonight. many thanks everyone 

 

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Which scope do you have?

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3 minutes ago, planet searcher said:

the telescope I've got at the minute, is very good, but it wont log on to venus, it tells me there are not enough stars. I've got someone coming to give me a demo on friday night, so fingers crossed it will be clear just like tonight. many thanks everyone 

 

Best of luck!!

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On 1/11/2017 at 21:59, planet searcher said:

thank you for the app advice.  i was wondering why mu scope wouldn't pick jupiter up. so if i go back out early in the morning will it be visible then ?

Planetsearcher,

as your scope knows the date and time, plus location it is able to calculate which planets are visible at the time you are observing. Therefore the handset only offers the planets that are visible.

i used to have a sky prodigy 130, it was a great scope for finding and viewing objects.

suggest you put the highest number eyepiece in the scope (probably a 25) then let the scope set itself up (it has a built in early version of starsense camera for anyone who didn't know this). Then choose the "sky tour" option and it should take you through the best objects for that date/time/location.

if it picks an object that is behind a house/tree then just move to the next one.

with an object centered in your eyepiece,you can try swapping to the lower numbered eyepiece (higher power) for a closer view.

if you get hooked, then buy the book "turn left at Orion" which has best objects season by season. You just choose the object using the handset and press "enter" ,it should swing into view.

this scope really got me hooked, although with only a 130mm aperture, most objects will be small so I soon wanted more aperture.

happy to help with any questions on your scope?

Alan

Edited by alanjgreen
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Jupiter from midnight to daybreak..venus,mars,neptune and uranus from darkness until about 9.30 ish..saturn just on the east horizon just before dawn..

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On 1/11/2017 at 22:07, planet searcher said:

the telescope I've got at the minute, is very good, but it wont log on to venus, it tells me there are not enough stars. I've got someone coming to give me a demo on friday night, so fingers crossed it will be clear just like tonight. many thanks everyone 

 

When the scope reports "too few stars" it is because the camera has failed to recognise the sky it is pointing at.

MAKE SURE YOU TAKE THE CAP OFF THE CAMERA!

you will see the scope move automatically and stop three times to take a pic of the sky, if you see it pointing at a building, tree or similar when it stops then the pic will have less than 100 stars and the scope reports "too few stars"

things to try

1 start the scope from a different starting position (rotate the scope on the ground so the initial pointing direction changes). if you think of the sky above as a clock face (with the initial direction as 12 o'clock), then the camera wants to take 1 pic between 12&3 o'clock, another between 3&6 o'clock and a final pick between 6&9 o'clock. Therefore position the scope so any view blocking obstructions are at 9-12 o'clock because the scope will not go there anyway.

2 if your garden has lots of obstructions then choose Manual Align and then follow the instructions on the handset where the scope will let you pick the clearest three views so it can take a picture

hopefully you can get to "alignment success" then start the "Sky Tour" function.

Alan

Edited by alanjgreen
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On 13/01/2017 at 09:39, alanjgreen said:

Planetsearcher,

as your scope knows the date and time, plus location it is able to calculate which planets are visible at the time you are observing. Therefore the handset only offers the planets that are visible.

i used to have a sky prodigy 130, it was a great scope for finding and viewing objects.

suggest you put the highest number eyepiece in the scope (probably a 25) then let the scope set itself up (it has a built in early version of starsense camera for anyone who didn't know this). Then choose the "sky tour" option and it should take you through the best objects for that date/time/location.

if it picks an object that is behind a house/tree then just move to the next one.

with an object centered in your eyepiece,you can try swapping to the lower numbered eyepiece (higher power) for a closer view.

if you get hooked, then buy the book "turn left at Orion" which has best objects season by season. You just choose the object using the handset and press "enter" ,it should swing into view.

this scope really got me hooked, although with only a 130mm aperture, most objects will be small so I soon wanted more aperture.

happy to help with any questions on your scope?

Alan

one other thing i wanted to know was whether you can get a rechargeable battery pack, as the wire that has got trapped in the scope while it was rotating, if any one could send me a link as to where i can get a new one, that would be great 

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On 13/01/2017 at 09:39, alanjgreen said:

Planetsearcher,

as your scope knows the date and time, plus location it is able to calculate which planets are visible at the time you are observing. Therefore the handset only offers the planets that are visible.

i used to have a sky prodigy 130, it was a great scope for finding and viewing objects.

suggest you put the highest number eyepiece in the scope (probably a 25) then let the scope set itself up (it has a built in early version of starsense camera for anyone who didn't know this). Then choose the "sky tour" option and it should take you through the best objects for that date/time/location.

if it picks an object that is behind a house/tree then just move to the next one.

with an object centered in your eyepiece,you can try swapping to the lower numbered eyepiece (higher power) for a closer view.

if you get hooked, then buy the book "turn left at Orion" which has best objects season by season. You just choose the object using the handset and press "enter" ,it should swing into view.

this scope really got me hooked, although with only a 130mm aperture, most objects will be small so I soon wanted more aperture.

happy to help with any questions on your scope?

Alan

one other thing i wanted to know was whether you can get a rechargeable battery pack, as the wire that has got trapped in the scope while it was rotating, if any one could send me a link as to where i can get a new one, that would be great 

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1 hour ago, planet searcher said:

one other thing i wanted to know was whether you can get a rechargeable battery pack, as the wire that has got trapped in the scope while it was rotating, if any one could send me a link as to where i can get a new one, that would be great 

Hi,

check in the handset menu if you find a setting for "cord wrap" and turn it ON.

on later scopes, it is found under the "telescope "  menu (number 7 on the handset) -I can't remember if the sky prodigy has it

this will stop the scope from rotating more than 180 degrees in one direction.

if you need a new power lead for a celestron scope then you can get one here

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/power-accessories/lynx-astro-mount-power-cable-for-celestron-mounts.html

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/astronomy-cables-leads-accessories/celestron-car-battery-adaptor-for-all-nexstars.html

 

Battery packs here

https://www.firstlightoptics.com/batteries-powerpacks.html

depends how much you want to spend. I would say you need minimum 7 Ah (amp hours) capacity, but higher is better.

Edited by alanjgreen

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hi, its the cable which runs from the battery pack to the scope its self which got stuck 

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not sure what you mean by "potter end"?

If you look on the celestron page for this scope http://www.celestron.com/browse-shop/astronomy/telescopes/skyprodigy/skyprodigy-130-computerized-telescope

you can see that they show the accessories for it further down.

Including the two power options (1) mains to scope (2) battery pack to scope

The leads I linked can be plugged into any battery pack that has cigarette lighter output, such as https://www.firstlightoptics.com/batteries-powerpacks/skywatcher-powertank-7ah.html or https://www.firstlightoptics.com/batteries-powerpacks/skywatcher-powertank-17ah.html  (the two circular connectors are the car battery connections - you need to slide back the hole covers to reveal the sockets)

Note that 7Ah & 17Ah denote the capacity of these batteries. (Amp Hours).

The car battery connector also has a FUSE built into the "centre pin" (it can be inscrewed), this protects your scope from over supply.

 

The scope end connector (for celestrons) always has the screw lock on it, even through none of their scopes has any thread to screw too (go figure). It does not affect the connection, just push it in unscrewed, it works just fine.

The celestron cables are a bit crap, you found out how easy they are to damage. The Lynx cables are much much thicker and will last much longer.

See my review thread of the lynx cables here

if thats not the answer you need then please re-state your question more clearly :)

 

 

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