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Barnard 33: The Horsehead Nebula - At last !


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Well, I didn't think I'd be making this post but here it is - tonight I have managed to see the Horsehead Nebula, Barnard 33 The sky here tonight is the best and darkest I've experienced for a lo

Yay !!! Just repeated my observation of the Horsehead Nebula Wind and cold made it harder than my 1st time around, or at least less comfortable. No doubt about the dark "bite" out of IC 434

Well done John. I believe I bagged it last night as well (if you can really call it bagged - it seemed it was always trying to slip through my fingers). On first attempt the bite would come and go and

Brilliant.. I can feel the excitement leaping of the page!.. well done & congratulations :hello2:

One of the reasons I hang out "on the dark side".. I doubt my eyes are that good & waiting 40 years!!! ... Nice one

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Well done John. The sky is exceptional tonight. 

I'll not hijack the thread, but a first view for me too. Using that dud filter that you sold me! Very rewarding.

Cracking writeup too.

Paul

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I am so envious. I spend a lot of time around Orion, but the seeing here, mainly due to LP, just won't let me see much other than M42 and 43. Even trying for a 20-30 second exposure at ISO 6400 won't give me much. Night before last, I got just enough of the Flame to make out the general shape, with a 45 second exposure. Forget visual (Edge HD 800 and 25 and 40mm EP's), it just wasn't happening.

Great post, I felt like I was there.

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Great report John and I am very pleased for you, I know you have been looking for a good while, longer than me maybe. I did after thing, is that it. I have a feeling I was expecting the Spanish Inquision or the start of the Grand National, all horses falling at Beech's Brook first time round. Not looked for it since I was so upset.

Alan

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So pleased for you John,

Not any rambling in your report at all, just clear explanation and excitement at achieving a long term observing goal, wonderful.

I know what you mean about the seeing last night, very so so here to.

Edited by Alan White
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Fabulous report John! Really chuffed you finally saw it, and to know it is possible from your back garden is all the more pleasing. Do you will find it more easily in future now, or was it very much a cause of the 'stars aligning' in terms of conditions?

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Well done John! A nice report and a nice night - I gave up here after trying for an hour or so; the Flame Nebula was only just visible, and the HH not at all. It is a target surprisingly dependent on transparency, it seems.

Chris

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Brilliant John. It really is an elusive filly, great that it all came together for you, I don't think there are many that have seen it in a 12" from suburban skies, a real tribute to your perseverence.

As you say the close pair of fainter stars make the position certain.

Just a thought, have you ever tried it with your Lumicon UHC? In an 18" we thought it gave a comparable view of B33 to the Astronomik Hb filter, enhancing the curtain of brighter nebula and making the notch stand out well.

My best view of it to date was also my first, just happened to chance past an astronomer who was scouring for it with his 16" Meade and Hb filter. Another dob user nearby knew I'd know the location and star patterns well from imaging it, and he asked me to help, although I'd never seen it visually. Dropped to the position and BOOM! There it was, a fantastic sight ( you know, for us!), a real eyepiece filler.

Now you need another "must see" tricky target :)

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6 hours ago, Paul73 said:

Well done John. The sky is exceptional tonight. 

I'll not hijack the thread, but a first view for me too. Using that dud filter that you sold me! Very rewarding.

Cracking writeup too.

Paul

Congrats to you Paul - I think the reason that I parted with that filter was frustration with me and my regular skies rather than the filter !

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2 hours ago, Stu said:

Fabulous report John! Really chuffed you finally saw it, and to know it is possible from your back garden is all the more pleasing. Do you will find it more easily in future now, or was it very much a cause of the 'stars aligning' in terms of conditions?

Thanks Stu.

I think my experiences last night will help next time around but the transparency of the sky last night was exceptional for here. Probably the best I've seen in 12 months or more. If we get a cold winter this time around and a few more nights similar, who knows though ? :icon_biggrin:

One further indicator that I had that the night was particularly good was that late in the session a quick look at M1.  That nebula, which can be rather dull visually, was bright, contrasty and showed structure even with the H-Beta filter in place. Normally I'd observe The Crab filterless or with the DGM NBP filter and David Knisely reckons that M1 is virtually invisible with a 10" using an H Beta so goodness knows what it would have looked like with the NBP !. Apart from this quick foray into Taurus, I spent at least 3 hours exclusively in Orion :rolleyes2:

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1 hour ago, Tim said:

Just a thought, have you ever tried it with your Lumicon UHC? In an 18" we thought it gave a comparable view of B33 to the Astronomik Hb filter, enhancing the curtain of brighter nebula and making the notch stand out well....

It did cross my mind at one point to try my DGM NBP filter (similar to a UHC) but I was so much "in the zone" with the Astronomik HB that I was afraid that I would loose my concentration if I swapped filters. Next time I will give it a try :icon_biggrin:

 

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Great report John - and congrats! Sounds like conditions came together nicely.  Wonderful to finally catch a long sought after target :)

I hope to pick up a H-beta filter sometime to try (might be a while though as funds are low after succumbing to H-alpha this year!!)

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Interesting read and congratulations.  I don't normally read observing reports being an imager.  I really admire the perseverance of observers to find and see these faint objects that can be picked up so easily with a camera.  

I did a few years of observing when I first got a scope, but these days I image and the only observing I do is when my imaging is up and running and then I wander round looking through other people's scopes whilst it is "capturing data", this is when I am at a star party of course.

Carole 

Edited by carastro
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Yes, The Horsehead does seem to be relatively straightforward to image. I could probably get it with my Canon DSLR in my EQ mount with a little guidance from imagers. But it does seem to be a notable challenge for observers. I guess imagers have their "Everests" too ? :icon_biggrin:

 

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Down to earth with a bump this morning. I've just had to deal with one of my childrens pets that passed away in the night.

From now on Barnard 33 is going to be known as "The Dead Gerbil Nebula" to me commemorate of this event :rolleyes2:

I'll notify the IAU later......

 

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