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My first ever time with my scope outside!


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I finally did it! All I can say is Wow! But I'll expand on that if I may. It was the first time I ever got my scope outside to do proper astronomy, only managed to get my Skymax 127 out because of my new sw az gti mount and tripod. The skies were clearing around 17:15 so I got everything together in my back pack and carried my scope and mount/tripod down the stairs to my outside communal area. Put the scope on the tripod with my dew shield to cool down as I set everything up (though in my excitement I forgot to level the tripod properly but it was close enough I think) The moon was high and 59‰ Mars was showing just above it. So I did the North level alignment with my syn scan app on my phone and aligned to Betelguese and Capella and pretty much spot on (would of be exact if I levelled the tripod) Then I went straight to the moon and such a clear sharp view so attached my dslr to the scope and fired off 30 or so images. Then I set Mars to goto and a nice crisp view, I connected my zwo asi120mc and took a few captures of Mars, could just make out a dark band around the middle, then set goto to Uranus and through my 20mm barlowed (I left my 10mm lens in my flat, doh) I saw a light blueish sphere, so centred it up and fitted my zwo again and got a few captures, though so small was hard to hold it steady in view but got there in the end. So chuffed to even see Uranus let alone image which took a while to centre it in the screen. Then I went back to the moon to get close ups with my zwo and so clear and sharp, I took many captures of different areas of the moon, with nice definition of craters and mountains. My last two targets for the session were Castor and Mintaka double stars and split them successfully with the zwo and a few captures, I should of got the dslr on but was to excited. I couldn't resit a quick look at M42 and could clearly see the trapezium stars with my 32mm lens. By this time I was so cold, my toes were going numb. I wish I could of stayed out longer but it was getting colder despite wrapping up and thermal socks. I've got a lot of data to look through moro just hope they stack and process well. Sorry this is a long report but since I got into astronomy in April 2020 this is my first time outside and not through a window. (doing it properly) The az gti and Skymax 127 performed admirably, sturdy and solid, will look into a slight backlash that can be altered in the settings menu. It's looking a bit clear on Saturday evening at the moment so hoping to go out again to view more wonders of the night sky. Clear skies. 🌌🔭📷😁

Edited by LeeHore7
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Thanks for the report. And glad that you managed to finally get the gear outside, and up and running.  I’m sure you’ll remember to level the tripod next time. My party piece is to forget to balance the mount 😂

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47 minutes ago, Zermelo said:

Congratulations on your first outside session. I'll be interested to see how the images turned out.

Thank you, I'm just going through them now, though my laptop has decided to do updates so going very slow. 

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40 minutes ago, Ande said:

Thanks for the report. And glad that you managed to finally get the gear outside, and up and running.  I’m sure you’ll remember to level the tripod next time. My party piece is to forget to balance the mount 😂

Thank you, yes, there's always something to forget to do during the excitement of clear skies and setting up. When I brought everything in from outside I kept all the caps off the scope, ep and camera because of fogging up and put them back on this morning was this correct? 

Edited by LeeHore7
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40 minutes ago, LeeHore7 said:

When I brought everything in from outside I kept all the caps off the scope

Yes, that's usually advisable, you can occasionally get problems with fungus on the optics. Best to position kit in an orientation that won't allow dust to fall on the important parts, until you've replaced the caps.

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54 minutes ago, LeeHore7 said:

Thank you, yes, there's always something to forget to do during the excitement of clear skies and setting up. When I brought everything in from outside I kept all the caps off the scope, ep and camera because of fogging up and put them back on this morning was this correct? 

That is what I do, I leave the EP cap on but loose and point the telescope at a slight downward angle to avoid dust (and let any dew run out if needed - hasnt happened so far).

Congratulations on your first session outside and here are to hopefully many more! The Skymax 127 sounds like a good telescope from the reviews I have read on here / elsewhere, I nearly ended up with a 102 instead of my current one so its always interesting to hear about how they perform :D

Edited by wibblefish
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18 minutes ago, wibblefish said:

That is what I do, I leave the EP cap on but loose and point the telescope at a slight downward angle to avoid dust (and let any dew run out if needed - hasnt happened so far).

Congratulations on your first session outside and here are to hopefully many more! The Skymax 127 sounds like a good telescope from the reviews I have read on here / elsewhere, I nearly ended up with a 102 instead of my current one so its always interesting to hear about how they perform :D

I left my scope with the caps off and the and the ep end slightly downwards in a cool room and thd ep caps off but shall keep them on loosely from now. I'm loving my Skymax 127 so glad I didn't sell it, it's doing everything I ask of it so far and giving me plenty, I was like a child again last night, hopefully Saturday evening will be good so far for another session and like to test it on small galaxies as andromeda will be to big to fit in clear skies. 

Edited by LeeHore7
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8 minutes ago, LeeHore7 said:

I left my scope with the caps off and the and the ep end slightly downwards in a cool room and thd ep caps off but shall keep them on loosely from now. I'm loving my Skymax 127 so glad I didn't sell it, it's doing everything I ask of it so far and giving me plenty, I was like a child again last night, hopefully Saturday evening will be good so far for another session and like to test it on small galaxies as andromeda will be to big to fit in clear skies. 

Sounds great, look forward to hearing about it, I am currently keeping tabs on the various types of telescopes for future upgrades to my 90mm though don't tell the wife since I have only had this one a few months bwahaha ;) 

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Nice report. It sounds like a very successful night. I saw some of your moon pics on the other post and they looked great.

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