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I've been out with my 200p dob having a poke around the skies. Lovely view of Orion and Pleiades. Tried to find Rosetta but no luck.

I thought I would be able to see M81 & M82 though my telescope, but couldn't find anything. is it possible and what should I be looking for? I have a romantic idea of seeing a nice swirly group of stars, but not a sausage.

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1st pic below is a good way to find them. M81 and M82 should be in the same field of view in a low power eyepiece, like the 2nd pic below, in your 8", if the sky is dark:

 

 

M82-SN-tight_edited-1.jpg

M81-M82-sketch.jpg

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In my experience the rosette will need a dark night and a UHC filter and dark adaption to reveal it self.. if there is any light pollution than you can hope to see a barely visible ghostly smoke around the NGC2244 cluster. 

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I can see M81/82 in the glare of Manchester, with my 8" dob.  

If you can start at 23UMa it's not too bad a star hop, it does sometimes take me a couple of goes though. 

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35 minutes ago, John said:

1st pic below is a good way to find them. M81 and M82 should be in the same field of view in a low power eyepiece, like the 2nd pic below, in your 8", if the sky is dark:

 

 

M82-SN-tight_edited-1.jpg

M81-M82-sketch.jpg

Thank you! This pretty much took me straight to them. Brilliant!

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I struggled a bit to find these two but did find Andromeda. Pointed it out to other half then explained that there are 1 trillion stars in that galaxy and other bumf from Wiki.. We were both astonished. How does your head not explode when you think about the vastness of space?

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If it's any consolation, I never managed to find M81 or M82 with my manual 8" reflector.

With the GoTo scopes it's as easy as poking a few buttons. They are generally visible even in murky urban skies with my 127mm and 203mm.

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They are quite doable in binoculars even from a suburban site if the transparency is ok. The hop that John posted is one I've used for years and it works beautifully. Glad you found them!

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M81 and M82 are easy with bins.  Follow a line through Dubhe from Phad, same distance again between Dubhe/Phad and you should find it with a little sweeping around.  They will both be in the same field of view and a probably a lot fainter than you might be expecting.

I have never seen the Rosette nebula visually.  It is huge and extremely ghostly and spread out.  That's a reason it wasn't even discovered until the late 19th century when photography became possible.

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1 hour ago, Stu said:

They are quite doable in binoculars even from a suburban site if the transparency is ok. The hop that John posted is one I've used for years and it works beautifully. Glad you found them!

I should have given you credit Stu - sorry mate !

I first found M81 and M82 with my Tasco 60mm refractor and I was really thrilled to see them - I didn't think the scope was capable of showing me "exotic" objects like that.

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7 minutes ago, John said:

I should have given you credit Stu - sorry mate !

Don't worry John, I wasn't claiming any proprietorial rights over it ;) apologies if it came over in that way!

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I was always under the impression that m81 and M82 was the same distance from phad to dubne straight through tried for a couple of years and could never see them.

I went to Buxton to a star party and met Nick (cotterless45) who told me that it was but just a tad left once I had got there. Following his direction found both in a 25mm in my old 6 inch scope. 

I can find them  really easy now. 

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4 minutes ago, wookie1965 said:

I was always under the impression that m81 and M82 was the same distance from phad to dubne straight through tried for a couple of years and could never see them.

I went to Buxton to a star party and met Nick (cotterless45) who told me that it was but just a tad left once I had got there. Following his direction found both in a 25mm in my old 6 inch scope. 

I can find them  really easy now. 

Yes, that is correct, but I often find that still leaves too much room for error, although with your little tweak it obviously works which is great.

The star hop John posted takes you right there so I find it is more reliable, particularly under tricky skies.

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The first step of my  star hop routine differs slightly from Stu's, and involves the 3.8 mag star Upsilon U Ma, which forms together with the equally bright star 23 U Ma a (not quite) "parallel" line to Beta U Ma (Merak) with Alpha U Ma (Dubhe). Both stars can be made out easily to the "right" of U Ma; when you follow the line "upward" (as you are doing with Merak and Dubhe to find Polaris) you get the exact direction to spot the "triangle" described by Stu, when you follow it for the distance Upsilon - 23 U Ma. From there, the same way to the "Line" and to M 81/82. Works very reliable, because it gives you the correct direction and distance to the triangle.

Stephan

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1 minute ago, Nyctimene said:

The first step of my  star hop routine differs slightly from Stu's, and involves the 3.8 mag star Upsilon U Ma, which forms together with the equally bright star 23 U Ma a (not quite) "parallel" line to Beta U Ma (Merak) with Alpha U Ma (Dubhe). Both stars can be made out easily to the "right" of U Ma; when you follow the line "upward" (as you are doing with Merak and Dubhe to find Polaris) you get the exact direction to spot the "triangle" described by Stu, when you follow it for the distance Upsilon - 23 U Ma. From there, the same way to the "Line" and to M 81/82. Works very reliable, because it gives you the correct direction and distance to the triangle.

Stephan

Actually Stephan, that's exactly what I do too :) 

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I tell you what, Michael Vlasov has made a rather splendid job of depicting what they look like through an 8" 'scope with a 25mm EP!

Always good to see a tidy image rather than some Hubble jobby, like they show on S@N! :rolleyes:

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You hear all sorts of claims regarding the Rosette - easy or difficult. In my opinion any claim that it's easy is daft. It might be easy for experienced observers with the right kit at the right location - because 'easy' means that they can see it. So then it becomes 'easy.' Well, no.

I never saw it in the UK. The NGC2244 cluster is easy but I never saw the nebula till I went to Spain one winter with my elderly Genesis, 19mm Panoptic, and a UHC filter - and then, high up in the Pyrenees, it was easy. Meaning I could see it. Where I live now I can see it fairly easily as well, just in a 70mm Pronto and OIII filter, but I have an SQM value which has beaten 22.

At longer focal lengths the Rosette won't fit in the view, of course, but what you can see is that the star count nose dives as you head from 2244 outwards in any direction and then picks up again. The nebula blocks the more distant stars. Even if you can't see the nebulosity you can see the obscuration and this alone is exciting.

Olly

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21 minutes ago, M Astronomy said:

So do you think M81 and M82 are visible in a pretty cheap 3" reflector?

 

Should be, on a dark night with little light pollution and no moonlight. Low magnification is fine. They won't jump out at you but should be visible as a small oval smudge of light and a nearby elongated smudge.

 

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I've seen them relatively easily in my 127 MAK using the Dubhe/Phad route on an Alt/Az (failed trying this with EQ). Were very pretty but much smaller and fainter than you'd think. Couldnt quite fit them both in the FOV though. This isnt a great time of year for them though as The Plough is quite low in the sky, you might have better luck in the spring.

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17 hours ago, M Astronomy said:

So do you think M81 and M82 are visible in a pretty cheap 3" reflector?

Yes, without moonlight and a NELM (=Naked Eye Limiting Magnitude) of 5.5 mag or better most certainly. Under such conditions, they are rather "easy" with 7x50 or 10x50 binoculars. July 2015, I spotted M 81 constantly with averted vision, and  M 82 for seconds with an excellent Docter 8x21 foldable monocular (-well, some experience helps).

M 81 is, as Phil Harrington describes in his wonderful book "Cosmic Challenge" (p. 28/29) even visible naked eye under extraordinarily good conditions and with the outstanding keen vision of a very experienced observer. With 12 million light years, it's the most distant object, that can be seen without optical aids.

Good luck with the hunt during the next New Moon period, and Clear Skies!

Stephan

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10 minutes ago, Nyctimene said:

M 81 is, as Phil Harrington describes in his wonderful book "Cosmic Challenge" (p. 28/29) even visible naked eye under extraordinarily good conditions and with the outstanding keen vision of a very experienced observer. With 12 million light years, it's the most distant object, that can be seen without optical aids.

I've read, I think in Stephen O'Meara's book The Messier Objects that it is possible to see these with the naked eye under extremely good conditions (and presumably with excellent eyesight), must be pretty amazing!

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On ‎1‎/‎15‎/‎2018 at 10:27, kirkster501 said:

I have never seen the Rosette nebula visually.  It is huge and extremely ghostly and spread out.  That's a reason it wasn't even discovered until the late 19th century when photography became possible.

 

On ‎1‎/‎7‎/‎2018 at 14:47, philipw said:

 Tried to find Rosetta but no luck.

I  was also surprised how faint it is. Sometimes Stellarium can really be misleading, even after you get used to it. I tried looking visually, all I could see was NGC 2244 (the cluster). I was freezing to death, it had dropped to 16*F by the time I got around to the Rosette, so I tried a quick EPP shot through my frac with my DSLR, and got this single image below. Sorry the focus is off, but this was ISO 6400 at 30 seconds, unfiltered with a 13mm EP, and you can just barely make out the nebulosity of NGC 2238.

DSC_1079.JPG

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So these look like they are off the top of the plough, I can see the plough from my viewing point so maybe I'll have look for them next time I'm out.  I expect if I can get the Goto working well it should go straight to them, but with that picture in my mind I might even be able to find them by star hopping, providing I go in the correct direction - I reckon star hopping with the finder might be the best idea.

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2 minutes ago, JOC said:

So these look like they are off the top of the plough, I can see the plough from my viewing point so maybe I'll have look for them next time I'm out.  I expect if I can get the Goto working well it should go straight to them, but with that picture in my mind I might even be able to find them by star hopping, providing I go in the correct direction - I reckon star hopping with the finder might be the best idea.

Yep, once you suss the star hop in the diagram they are quite easy, assuming your skies are good enough. Try in binoculars first so you get the hang of it.

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