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Greetings old fellas, its been quite a long time since i have last been here... But im now currently in Netherlands and wanted to ask if any of you guys have experiences here in observing? The skies here during night are extremely bright from all the light coming from the cities. Furthermore I do not really know where to start from again, i have a starwatcher explorer 130P with the focal lenght of 650 mm and diameter of 130 mm.  Im more interested in watching the deep sky thats why i have it. Any suggestions for what i should do in order to begin my star gazing again? Every answer or information will be of value for me ;)

 

Dont worry be calm, cheers,

Ray

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I observe from in between Schiphol and Amsterdam, so my skies are very bright but I still get nice views of double stars, brighter star clusters, and the very brightest nebulae. But some nights I do look up and wonder why I bother.

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Yes, as Agnes says,  under light pollution globular clusters, doubles, brighter open clusters and tight planetary nebulas are the targets of choice.

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Another thing, how do i correctly allign a equatorial mount i think its the third or second version i have. Because for stargazing its enough to write the coordinates down and then by adjusting the knobs you can find the object youre looking for right...?

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Planets (and the Moon) are the very best objects from a city, assuming you have clear views to the South. However, it will be a few more months before the planets are well positioned for observing.

I can't advise on equatorial mounts as I don't use one. I prefer alt-az mounts for their simplicity and lightness. I find objects by pointing the red dot finder in the right area by eye then scanning carefully with a wide angle eyepiece.

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11 hours ago, Ray02 said:

Another thing, how do i correctly allign a equatorial mount i think its the third or second version i have. Because for stargazing its enough to write the coordinates down and then by adjusting the knobs you can find the object youre looking for right...?

It’s probably easiest to check YouTube for alignment tips - it’s easier to watch than explain!

Setting circles; Not quite, you need to know a few of the brighter stars in the sky and learn their coordinates. Then you find one of them through the scope, adjust the rings to match the coordinates, and then you can move your scope around to whatever target you are looking for.

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18 hours ago, Mr niall said:

Setting circles; Not quite, you need to know a few of the brighter stars in the sky and learn their coordinates. Then you find one of them through the scope, adjust the rings to match the coordinates, and then you can move your scope around to whatever target you are looking for.

In two sentences that's explained something I'd been wondering about for ages (even though I don't have that sort of mount, I'd still been wondering why the were important and how they worked.)  So......You move the setting circles to match a star and then it all works - makes perfect sense now 😄 

Edited by JOC

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55 minutes ago, JOC said:

In two sentences that's explained something I'd been wondering about for ages (even though I don't have that sort of mount, I'd still been wondering why the were important and how they worked.)  So......You move the setting circles to match a star and then it all works - makes perfect sense now 😄 

Yeah, they can be a bit vague on an eq1 or 2 but for brighter stuff it’s actually quite fun zooming around with just a piece of paper and some numbers to direct you (if you like that sort of thing!) 🤓

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55 minutes ago, rockystar said:

For your viewing pleasure:

 

I’ve watched that a few times. It’s really good. But having said that I don’t really agree with the point he’s making about accuracy. If your aim is simply finding stuff then I think they work great. I was using a skymax 90 on a tabletop EQ1 in this fashion for about 8 months and saw M13, M2, M11, M15, the double cluster and many others for the first time just using this method - so it cant be that bad!

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I found the video very useful. even tho I have a GoTo scope I have often thought about using the setting circles to find objects. Mus try sometime

Keith

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