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I was really hoping to get some more DSOs ticked off tonight but unfortunately the moon was doing its best to spoil that for me.  So after a quick look at the moon itself and the Orion nebulia I had a pop at some of the doubles that I've read about.

I spent ages trying to see Almach - I had planned out a little diagram of where it was in relation to the square of Pegasus, and I thought I'd found it, but whatever mag I used it was still one star.... so I went back inside to warm up and look up on t'interweb what magnification should be necessary to split the two stars.  Then it hit me that I'd drawn my diagram wrong and I was actually looking at Mirach.  In fact it was possible to see two distinct stars of Almach at only 62x magnification, and very pretty they were too.  Perhaps not as obviously coloured as I had expected, but maybe that was due to the very bright moonlight overwhelming everything.

Back to Orion briefly, and I managed to see Rigel B as a double again.  Very satisfying.

I took a quick look at Castor and then, finally, Algieba made its appearance over some nearby trees.  Nice to see this new one too, but now I've got to see more of Almach, preferably on a really dark night to show it at its best.  Can anyone recommend any other nice beginner double targets?  Especially ones with an obvious colour difference.

I can really see how this becomes addictive.

Pete

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I was really hoping to get some more DSOs ticked off tonight but unfortunately the moon was doing its best to spoil that for me.  So after a quick look at the moon itself and the Orion nebulia I had a

Absolutely, multiple star systems are amongst the most beautiful objects in the sky. I would recommend the Cambridge Double Star Atlas, all of them are worth searching out. If I can recommend one, it

Mizar doesn’t seem to get a lot of love, but it is one of my favourite sights to seek out. I cannot let the Big Dipper rise without a cheeky peep

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1 hour ago, Orange Smartie said:

can really see how this becomes addictive

Absolutely, multiple star systems are amongst the most beautiful objects in the sky. I would recommend the Cambridge Double Star Atlas, all of them are worth searching out. If I can recommend one, it would be Beta Monocerotis, a triple star system which is well placed at the moment, stunning!!

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Have just come in from looking at a few. I can really recommend Iota Cancri. It's like a mini winter Albireo.  A large yellow star with a smaller blue companion. Easily split, too.

Was also trying to split the close pair in Tegmine (zeta Cancri). This is a bit trickier to say the least! just managed to do so, I could make out the separate airy disks at x300.

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Thank you both for your suggestions. I'll have a look at those next time I get a clear night.

I'm using a 6 inch dob, which I guess is not the ideal telescope for using at very high magnification - I struggled to keep anything centered at 180x - but those two look like they won't need high magnifications anyway.  And I will most definitely see if I can get a copy of the double star atlas.

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Thanks for the recommendations which I have added to my target list.

I thoroughly enjoyed the colours of Almach and found it easier to split than Rigel with a 8".

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Tonight under Bortle 7/8 skies and an 85% moon, using the dinky Skymax 102mm I managed a few 'easy' doubles. None required more than 200x. Doable with a 6" Dob. Give these a try:

Eta Cas, 61 Cygnus, 30 Aries, Lamda Ari, Gamma Ari, Iota Cancer, Theta 2 Can, 38 Gem, Tegman, Mintaka and Castor.

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How about a triple? Iota Cassiopeiae. it's high up just now and probably best viewed as early as possible before it gets up near the zenith. It's stunning and one of my favourites.

And in a few months' time, double-double will be back with us. You'll have your eye in by then, ready for this: 

 

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8 hours ago, Pixies said:

How about a triple? Iota Cassiopeiae. it's high up just now and probably best viewed as early as possible before it gets up near the zenith. It's stunning and one of my favourites.

 

This looks good! Thank you. 

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While in Orion try Sigma Orionis, it's a quadruple star system and does not need high magnification. (Ignore the separation data from Stellarium, it refers to the separation of the primary component AB, which is also a double).

 

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13 hours ago, Nik271 said:

While in Orion try Sigma Orionis, it's a quadruple star system and does not need high magnification. (Ignore the separation data from Stellarium, it refers to the separation of the primary component AB, which is also a double).

 

stellarium-000.thumb.png.f6ad27ed9cdb38babaaea91e9db89fb1.png

This is really nice, thank you.  With such a full moon and not yet having made a lightshield for my telescope, this was the best direction to be looking tonight.

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Mizar doesn’t seem to get a lot of love, but it is one of my favourite sights to seek out. I cannot let the Big Dipper rise without a cheeky peep :)

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4 minutes ago, Ande said:

Mizar doesn’t seem to get a lot of love, but it is one of my favourite sights to seek out. I cannot let the Big Dipper rise without a cheeky peep :)

Well it's one of our favourites at the Astronomy Centre during our outreach sessions.  Keen sighted visitors can usually see Alcor presenting a naked eye double and  are then amazed to see in the telescope that Mizar is itself a double.  A graphic example that there is more to astronomy than meets the eye!

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19 minutes ago, Peter Drew said:

Well it's one of our favourites at the Astronomy Centre during our outreach sessions.  Keen sighted visitors can usually see Alcor presenting a naked eye double and  are then amazed to see in the telescope that Mizar is itself a double.  A graphic example that there is more to astronomy than meets the eye!

Ah, that’s good to hear.  Maybe it hasn’t been abandoned after all 😀

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45 minutes ago, Ande said:

Mizar doesn’t seem to get a lot of love, but it is one of my favourite sights to seek out. I cannot let the Big Dipper rise without a cheeky peep :)

Your actually right at least in my case.Mizar was the first telescopic double I resolved with my first proper telescope,which was a Prinz 60mm refractor( the type that were all the rage in the early 70's) the same evening I first saw Cor Caroli. Funny how early observations stick in the mind more than the more recent 'first see's with much better equipment. For example I cant ever remember my first view of say Epsilon 1 and 2 Lyrae, or Ras Algethi or even Albireo. It's strange then that I very seldom even glance either Mizar or Cor Caroli  these days,but I will rectify that next time I'm out.

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10 minutes ago, Les Ewan said:

Your actually right at least in my case.Mizar was the first telescopic double I resolved with my first proper telescope,which was a Prinz 60mm refractor( the type that were all the rage in the early 70's) the same evening I first saw Cor Caroli. Funny how early observations stick in the mind more than the more recent 'first see's with much better equipment. For example I cant ever remember my first view of say Epsilon 1 and 2 Lyrae, or Ras Algethi or even Albireo. It's strange then that I very seldom even glance either Mizar or Cor Caroli  these days,but I will rectify that next time I'm out.

My first one (with an old Tasco 60mm refractor) was Algieba (Gamma Leonis). I was really amazed when I saw those two golden yellow disks almost touching at 60x or so. One of those "blink in disbelief" moments :smiley:

I do still enjoy looking at that one and occasionally dust down the old Tasco to re-live my first sighting.

 

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2 minutes ago, John said:

My first one (with an old Tasco 60mm refractor) was Algieba (Gamma Leonis). I was really amazed when I saw those two golden yellow disks almost touching at 60x or so. One of those "blink in disbelief" moments :smiley:

I do still enjoy looking at that one and occasionally dust down the old Tasco to re-live my first sighting.

 

Glad you still have your old 60mm. My Prinz is long gone. I saw one on Ebay with the complete kit still boxed a couple of years ago I was very tempted but I really didn't have the space.

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23 minutes ago, Les Ewan said:

Glad you still have your old 60mm. My Prinz is long gone. I saw one on Ebay with the complete kit still boxed a couple of years ago I was very tempted but I really didn't have the space.

I got it setup last Summer and had a couple of sessions with it. It's wobbly on the alt-az mount and the .965 eyepieces seemed minute but the optics are really quite good :smiley:

 

tasco01.JPG

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48 minutes ago, John said:

I got it setup last Summer and had a couple of sessions with it. It's wobbly on the alt-az mount and the .965 eyepieces seemed minute but the optics are really quite good :smiley:

 

tasco01.JPG

Looks a lot like my old 60mm but the Prinz had a wooden tripod. If I remember right it had a 710mm fl. The yoke and slow motions are very familiar .Mine had 3  0.96" Huygen eyepieces and a useless barlow. I agree for all its faults it gave reasonable views. I remember fondly  seeing the Ring Nebula with this scope despite living only about 1km of the centre of Edinburgh at the time. Along with doubles it gave memorable views of Venus,Jupiter and Saturn. I remember vividly observing the Moon occulting Saturn through it on March 2nd 1974.😎

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On 26/01/2021 at 11:35, John said:

I got it setup last Summer and had a couple of sessions with it. It's wobbly on the alt-az mount and the .965 eyepieces seemed minute but the optics are really quite good :smiley:

 

tasco01.JPG

 

That looks like a big brother of my first scope from the same era, a tabletop "Skybolt" 40mm:

image.png.4a1d8941e7c7eb06e0e0f06ff86d18b9.png

 

with cemented doublet and a pull-out 0.965 eyepiece that gave 15x/30x/45x options.  Perhaps they came from the same factory?

I still have it in the loft, a bit the worse for wear.   In my dreams, it will be re-purposed one day as the finder on a 29 inch dob at a Bortle 1 retirement cottage.

 

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On 23/01/2021 at 23:20, Jiggy 67 said:

Absolutely, multiple star systems are amongst the most beautiful objects in the sky. I would recommend the Cambridge Double Star Atlas, all of them are worth searching out. If I can recommend one, it would be Beta Monocerotis, a triple star system which is well placed at the moment, stunning!!

The Cambridge double star atlas is brilliant, the last time I looked it was also really expensive.

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1 minute ago, Carl Au said:

The Cambridge double star atlas is brilliant, the last time I looked it was also really expensive.

I have a copy of that and it is very nicely produced but I've not really taken to it for some reason :dontknow:

Maybe I need to give it another chance.

 

 

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1 minute ago, John said:

I have a copy of that and it is very nicely produced but I've not really taken to it for some reason :dontknow:

Maybe I need to give it another chance.

 

 

Tis the double star bible. 

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