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Astro-Nat

First Deep Sky Success! Woohoo!

14 posts in this topic

Just got in from making the most of a beautiful clear sky before the cloud (inevitably) rolled in. Stoked to have had my first deep sky viewings. It started with Andromeda, which has always eluded me before tonight. Although presenting as just a hazy shape through my eyepiece, (saving up for better ones as we speak) it was one of the coolest things I have ever seen. Up there with my first Jupiter viewing for excitement levels, even though the results were less instant, probably less impressive in the traditional sense, and it took quite a bit of eyepiece changing, twisting of focus knobs and trial and error to get it right, I was blown away by this smudge 2.5 million light years away. Still buzzing an hour and a half later! I also saw M3 and M5, once I got my eye in it was surprising how much easier it was to see things that I've definitely overlooked before. I think I'm getting the hang of it!

Fingers crossed for another clear one tomorrow, and another successful night!

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Congratulations. You'll find out that when you get more experienced, you can identify (or sometimes maybe imagine?) more details in dso's.

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Congrats!

Almost surreal to read a deep sky report this time of year, considering the bright summer nights we`ve got up here.

 

Rune

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Nice one.. some one got the bug....

 

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Posted (edited)

What scope and eyepiece did you use?

Just M31 is never great in the majority of situations as all a person often sees is the central core. M31 is big so to get it all the magnification has to be down at the 20x level usually, and getting that low is often not easy.

Since you can find it now take a look with binocualrs, they generally fit it all in if you want to give them a try.

Try M13 on Hercules for the next one.

Edited by ronin
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@ronin I was using my Celestron Astro Fi 130mm, with the 25mm eyepiece. All I did see was the central core, and it pretty much looked like a smudge on my lense (I thought it was for  while, it's only when I couldn't clean it off that I realised that it wasn't!) It wasn't a great view at all, but very exciting all the same! I shall take the binoculars out next time, thanks for the tip!

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5 minutes ago, Astro-Nat said:

@ronin I was using my Celestron Astro Fi 130mm, with the 25mm eyepiece. All I did see was the central core, and it pretty much looked like a smudge on my lense (I thought it was for  while, it's only when I couldn't clean it off that I realised that it wasn't!) It wasn't a great view at all, but very exciting all the same! I shall take the binoculars out next time, thanks for the tip!

With that kit you would be getting much of M31 in anyway, you were probably getting around 1.9 degrees of sky in which is enough to include M32 and M110. The 'problem' is much more likely to be skies that are not dark enough. Wait until it's properly dark and head to a dark site and you scope will show you these two aswell.

The mid sized red circle in this chart is 2 degrees. It is only the very faint extended arms that you will be missing. To get the whole lot in you need around 3 degrees.

IMG_2888.PNG

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congrats!...as Stu says it's more to do with quality of your skies. DSO's can be mind boggling when you step back and do a little research!...remember, above all else Dark skies rule...nice report and thanks for sharing...clear skies!

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@Stu @estwing Thank you both for the advice. As you can tell, I'm finding it all a bit confusing at the moment, but loving it all the same, so any advice is really appreciated!

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12 minutes ago, Astro-Nat said:

@Stu @estwing Thank you both for the advice. As you can tell, I'm finding it all a bit confusing at the moment, but loving it all the same, so any advice is really appreciated!

Don't worry, we all did! You will find your feet very soon, it helps when it gets properly dark for longer so you have more time.

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Lovely report, congrats on your first DSO success 

I'm under urban skies which even at their darkest aren't especially dark but what I found really helps is an observing hood, shop bought or jerryrigged. You can't do anything about the brightness up there but you can do something about stray light down here :)
 

 

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Posted (edited)

On 7/8/2017 at 08:43, estwing said:

congrats!...as Stu says it's more to do with quality of your skies. DSO's can be mind boggling when you step back and do a little research!...remember, above all else Dark skies rule...nice report and thanks for sharing...clear skies!

 

On 7/8/2017 at 19:13, Astro-Nat said:

@Stu @estwing Thank you both for the advice. As you can tell, I'm finding it all a bit confusing at the moment, but loving it all the same, so any advice is really appreciated!

I'd agree with Calvin (Estwing) and what he's saying.

The best way to use your money is a couple of gallons in the car and a trip to a dark site. It doesn't matter what scope and eyepieces you have as you'll not get the best out of them under urban skies.

Happy hunting

Damian 

Edited by mapstar
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Fab report. Those first views of DSO's are so exciting. I would second the recommendation on M13. If conditions are good you can push the magnification up and you should be able to resolve some individual stars. The double cluster NGC869/884 is another great target. One of the clusters has a number of red giant stars in it. It's fun to try and spot which one :)

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Great report! :)

Dark adaptation and dark skies always help.

 

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