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Celestron Astromaster 130

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Hello All, this is my first post to this great forum.

I finally got up very early to see Saturn which was great, but was slightly disappointed with my magnication as i could barely see the rings (only 65x with 10mm eyepiece). Do you recommend a more powerful eyepiece or a barlow?

In addition, the 20mm terestial eypiece seemed to distort the image, is this normal or do I have a duff eyepiece.

Is it just me or is the red dot finder a nightmare for faint objects, it's fine for starts and planets, but I still can't point it at Andromeda (that I can easily find with cheap binoculars :hello2: )?

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I don't think the rings are gonna be good to look at for a while. I think they are now edge on to us making it a very thin band (have a look at the ani here. The RDF, not having any light gathering or magnification ability, does make it harder to find dimmer objects, but having said that, it should still be able to assist you in navigating to the correct approximate region of the sky, then use a low power eyepiece to narrow in further. Have you aligned the finder properly ?

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With an RDF the trick is to know where in the sky the object you are looking for is then put your red dot more or less on that spot - and then use a low power eyepiece in the scope to see if it's in the field of view.

Even 50mm optical finders struggle to pick out much more than the brigtest DSO's.

Get a good star atlas then use the RDF to get "near enough". Use the "both eyes open" technique rather than looking through the RDF as such. With a little practice you will then start to see the red dot as if its "projected" against the sky.

As has been said, Saturn is going to be a bit underwhelming this time around but will improve over the coming years.


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Thanks for your replies.

Red dot is Ok for looking at a bright stars or planets so it's setup ok. There's too much redlight bouncing around which obscures the sky behind, perhaps I can find a way to reduce the light output?

I like the suggestion to use a wide field eye piece, but I have heard that there are issues with newtonians (i,e the centre is dark at low magnifications)?

So what is the most cost effective means of increasing my magnification, 5mm eyepice or 2x barlow?

Saturns rings were at a shallow angle, but not edge on still worth a look. Lack of magnification was my problem.

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Also have you aligned your RDF with your scope?

Get either a good star atlas or Stellarium on a lap top and find the brightest star near your DSO you want to look at.

Use both eyes to place your red dot over this star. If all things are aligned then it will be in your FOV in your eyepiece.

Then it is just a matter of sweeping around the area until you find your DSO.

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Those who've never owned a Celestron Astromaster won't realise that it's RDF isn't like any finder they've used. It has two windows each with a raised central dot. A red LED is shone into each window (at the edge) to illuminate these dots. The user sights along these two dots at the target. BUT the rear LED is very bright and the entire rear glass becomes bright red.

Of course the trick to using ANY red dot finder is to keep both eyes open but that big bright red light is a pain. I dismantled one and blacked out all but the central point of the rear LED with marker pen which improved things no end - just the two dots are now illuminated, not the entire glass.

But then unlike most RDF's it's not just a matter of having a red dot superimposed in the view for you, that's not the way this finder works. You actually need to sight along the two dots.

They are about 35mm apart... think about it folks.

It's a natty little thing and looks neat all built into the scope like it is, but it's no Telrad. Reckon a Telrad would sit pretty well on that scope JNP.

Also, the 20mm erecting eyepiece is really for daytime use :hello2:

Decent scope though, much fun to be had with a 130mm 8)



(pics folks;)




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