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Aligning the scope (Nexstar 4SE)


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Greetings!

 

I've had my telescope for a couple of months now and I still didn't get the chance to try the sky align option, I watched some video and tried aligning my scope many times but it never seemed to work. I only use it to watch the moon and I have to manually move it every minute or so because it keeps getting out of frame, how can I set it to track the moon on its own? I wanted to see Saturn a month or two back but I couldn't do it, I'm planning on trying again tomorrow as I'll know where it'll be in relation to the moon and mercury. Any tips you can give me? I really want to see Saturn. (Also, will my 25mm eye piece that came with the telescope work to see Saturn?)

 

Thank you

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I find with my 8se, same operating system, that a 2 star alignment is the most reliable. The Moon is the hardest object for a GOTO to find due to the Moon's complex motions. There is also a lunar rate function on the handset, the Moon moves in the opposite direction to the stars.  :icon_biggrin:

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It is not hard to use the Nexstar system but it can be a bit of a learning curve. First, read the manual. Then take some time to work through the options till you see what's what. Make sure you have entered the time, latitude and longitude in the format required by the handset.

You don't have to use the sky align. There are several alignment options - if you just want to look at the Moon or a bright planet then select Solar System Align and select the thing you want to observe as the alignment object and aim the telescope at it and complete the alignment. The mount will now track. And if you leveled the mount and performed the alignment with sufficient accuracy, it will also find other objects for you.

I fear you have lost your chance to see Saturn for the next several months as it is now lost in the sunset.  You probably want a higher powered eyepiece for Saturn. Check what is recommended and then look for a good quality Plossl (e.g. a Celestron Omni) of the appropriate focal length.

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The point of the Nexstar Skyalign is that you do not need to know what the three bright stars are. The software will figure it out. A two-star align is less work but you then need to know the names of the stars you are using.  No initial position is required.

Edited by Cosmic Geoff
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  • 1 month later...
On 19/11/2017 at 14:57, Peter Drew said:

There is also a lunar rate function on the handset, the Moon moves in the opposite direction to the stars.  :icon_biggrin:

Are you sure about this?...it moves on a different plane but not opposite..never seen it going backwards..the motion of the stars is because of the earth spin....motion of the moon is also because of the earths spin combined with its own orbit of the earth..but never backwards

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23 minutes ago, newbie alert said:

Are you sure about this?...it moves on a different plane but not opposite..never seen it going backwards..the motion of the stars is because of the earth spin....motion of the moon is also because of the earths spin combined with its own orbit of the earth..but never backwards

Lunar rate is slightly slower than sidereal rate. If you observe the moon over a period of time you will notice that the stars are moving faster so it appears that the moon is going backwards.

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1 hour ago, Cornelius Varley said:

Lunar rate is slightly slower than sidereal rate. If you observe the moon over a period of time you will notice that the stars are moving faster so it appears that the moon is going backwards.

Sorry but can't say is noticed..stars move because of earth rotation..sidereal rate..but moon is also effected by this sidereal rate..i can see that the moon is in a different position especially leading up to full moon phase  but always tracks across the sky east ish to west..

So yeah I can see it's at a slightly slower rate but backwards might be the wrong term to use

Edited by newbie alert
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