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Forecast for tonight was clear so set up the large dob in anticipation.

Wandering around the garden giving myself time to get some dark adaptation I noticed a large amount of satelites. An imagers nightmare. 

Fortunately for me tonight I am not imaging.

First up, check collimation, Castor in Gemini was really nicely split at 100x. Good image in and out of focus on bright star Capella.

On to the first object of the evening, M51 The Whirlpool Galaxy. Found the area of sky with the Telrad, looked through the eyepiece and was not there, moved a little to the left, there it is, large and well placed in the field of view, both cores very visible with the outer halo also very apparent, after a moment or two to give the view time to settle, gradually detail became more apparent, and faintly the spiral became visible with direct vision, whilst it was not jumping out at me it was there, but I had only been outside for about 15 mins and there are lights on in the house so not fully dark adapted. Will pop back to this later when the family are in bed and the street lights go off.

Next up over to Coma Berenices, the Needle Galaxy, NGC 4565. Again found the area with the Telrad, pleasantly this time the galaxy was there in the eyepiece. Bright and obvious. Long and slender in the eyepiece with the central dust lane obvious. Again had not been out for long and conditions were not yet ideal but will go back to this object also later.

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Nice stuff !

I have my 12 inch dob out as well. I've picked out a few nice things and the supernova in Virgo but there are some ominous clouds coming over from Wales so I don't know how much longer I've got.

Hope your clear skies continue :smiley:

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Unfortunately dew has got the better of me tonight but not before I managed to get a view of M13 Globular cluster in Hercules. Wow, wow and triple wow. I was so immersed in the view, chains of stars radiating from the centre of the cluster, resolvable all the way to the core, and it is only about 40 degrees above the horizon so should be in for a treat with this one once nearer the zenith.

What a fabulous object, I have viewed many times in my 12 inch dob before, many times from our dark site, however what I saw tonight was far far better, brighter and more resolved than I have ever observed before, filling the eyepiece with stars. 

Shame about the dew but lovely evening none the less.

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36 minutes ago, oldfruit said:

Unfortunately dew has got the better of me tonight but not before I managed to get a view of M13 Globular cluster in Hercules. Wow, wow and triple wow. I was so immersed in the view, chains of stars radiating from the centre of the cluster, resolvable all the way to the core, and it is only about 40 degrees above the horizon so should be in for a treat with this one once nearer the zenith.

What a fabulous object, I have viewed many times in my 12 inch dob before, many times from our dark site, however what I saw tonight was far far better, brighter and more resolved than I have ever observed before, filling the eyepiece with stars. 

Shame about the dew but lovely evening none the less.

I've just realised that by "large dob" you mean your 20 inch !

Having observed M13 and M51 with a 20 inch under dark skies a few years ago I can appreciate the impact that such views have - unforgettable :shocked:

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