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Hello from Glasgow


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First chance to write up thoughts after Friday night - clear skies and first use of new binoculars. (it was good)

Finally got act together,  bought some 8x42 binoculars, used the Clear Outside app to plan, downloaded SkySafari and away we go.
Except hadn't thought through advanced years and needing to use glasses to see the iPad, vs no glasses for binoculars. Lots of chopping and changing.
And what is it with satellites? Cant believe the swarms of them overhead! First one was 'oooh'. By the end of the 2 hours shift - it was rather less enthusiastic...

Having absorbed some of the info on this site, in the past few weeks I have:

  • Read the Backyard Astronomers Guide cover to cover.
  • Bought Turn Left At Orion and tried to work out how to remember what I had read vs what I was seeing...

I loved it - even though on the edge of the city and sky not very dark.
Was so much better than I expected through binoculars!

Learnt a lot - mainly my own failings - but then if it was easy: where's the challenge?

Now desperate for another clear night - come on now Clear Outside - give me the goods!

Also now desperate for a 'proper' telescope.
This was such a great intro - and I definitely see the advantage with binoculars and ease of seeing the sky - however I want to do more - I want a telescope!

Got eyes on a SkyMax 127 AZ Gti - that looks sweet - and able to take up north to darker skies which I do frequently.

Thanks to all who contribute to this site - read so much - and gained so much - before I even started.

Getting close to climbing first run on ladder - and it's a long ladder!

Thanks all,



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Welcome Keith.  You have found a great place to learn, there are lots of really talented people here.  No matter what the question, no matter how simple or basic you may think it just ask and you will find some amazing help. Don't be in a rush either, our weather sucks, so grab the opportunity when you can.  Taken me about 10 years to be able to take what I feel is a reasonable image - I'm a slow learner and it's cloudy a lot in Fife :) 


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Hi there, and welcome!

I started with 10x50 binos for a few years before getting a scope when lockdown first started. It will give you a real head-start once you get your first scope. What were your targets to start with? Have you signed up for the Binocular Sky newsletter?

A quick improvement will be had with a tripod/monopod of some sort. Holding the binos steady will allow you to see more, even your lighter ones. I think you should be able to see Jupiter's moons with 8x42 - only once it gets higher in the sky, though.



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Welcome aboard SGL Keith, good to have you with us.

Bins are a perfectly good way of exploring the heavens and work well with a stand, or even just bracing them against something solid. I use the washing post!  Even if you get a telescope, bins will always be good for quick looks or to get your bearings etc.

The light skies are a drawback at the moment, but it's a good time to get familiar with the sky, where things are and how it changes from season to season and even hour to hour. A year in and the returning constellations and objects are like old friends.  If you enjoy it now, you're gonna love it when good lengths of darkness come back in autumn.

Enjoy your journey and keep sharing it with us.

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Thanks everyone. Yes, the short night is certainly not helpful, but does provide me with more reading time.
Hopefully then be better prepared for the Autumn and the earlier nights.



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