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First spin with my scope!


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So I got my 10" Skywatcher Dob today and assembled it, I just took it out for about an hour and the view of the full moon was amazing, it was so clear and the detail was astounding, I only have the supplied EP's that came with the scope 25 and 10mm ones I believe. I used a moon filter that I bought aswell otherwise it was far too bright and hurt my eyes.

I recall reading that what you view comes out as being upside down but I guess I forgot and at first I was confused as to why when I moved the scope in one way the image went another way so to speak.

I also must say that after having played with a telescope for a short while now it's a lot easier to understand a lot of things i've read about before buying it, it all "just makes sense" now that i've had hands-on experience.

I wasn't expecting it to be so large, and my mother said to me "why did you buy a huge industrial-sized telescope???" hah. but thankfully I can just keep it by the patio doors and it's easy to move out into the back yard from there.

Sky was rather cloudy but it had clear patches, I pointed the scope at a seemingly blank area of the sky and the view through the EP showed me hundreds of stars that I couldn't see with my eyes :icon_eek:

I was hoping to try and get a look at jupiter but it was too low down and I couldn't see it over the garden wall.

One thing i'm worried about though how often is the moon out and about so bright like this? doesn't it make it hard to view things with the "pollution" from the moon?

I might end up taking the scope to my dads and leaving it there, my back yard isn't very suitable because only about 40% of the sky is available to me due to a house being opposite mine blocking a lot of sky :)

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It's nearly full moon so you need to wait a week. So for now try to observe planets, clusters and double stars.

In about a week the moon won't rise until midnight and a week later it won't rise at all during the night.

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Looks fantastic. If the view is upside down and back to front it sounds like they may have given you the southern hemisphere version of the scope by mistake. Don't worry, there is an easy way to test. Point the scope at Cassiopeia. As long as you don't see Centaurus through the eye piece you'll be ok :icon_eek:

Joking aside, you'll be able to see so many things with your scope once the moon disappears. It is amazing what a difference the moon makes. Last night I looked out at 2am and the back garden was lit up more brightly than any security light could manage, with the roof line casting a thick shadow.

Have fun and keep us updated with what you see.

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Great looking scope i am a newbie to this and i have started with the 8" dob - my best sighting to date is definatly Orion nebula which is in our skies at around 3am - it was early but WELL WORTH getting up for - Hope you have as much fun with your new scope as i have so far..........

Regards Daren

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It does feel strange at first to track an object nudging the scope the opposite way to what you would expect, but it soon comes naturally. You have already noticed one benefit of the dob - you can make the most of any breaks in the clouds :icon_eek:

Have fun with it and keep posting your observing reports - we love to read them.

Steph

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Excellent scope! :icon_eek: I used one when visiting the UK in February (my first experience with a Dob). The up/down left/right issue was confusing till i began to move the scope in relation to the horizon instead of what was in the eyepiece. Took a few minutes to get used to but then it was pretty intuitive.

Regarding the Moon, i wrote something entitled The Phases of the Moon which explains things a bit. It's near the bottom of the page.

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The up/down left/right issue was confusing till i began to move the scope in relation to the horizon instead of what was in the eyepiece. Took a few minutes to get used to but then it was pretty intuitive.

When I move the scope I imagine I'm not moving the scope but pulling/pushing the object I'm watching.

Example: If i see Jupiter drifting up, I pull down the handle as if I was grabbing the planet and pulling it down. Same for left right. After a couple minutes it comes naturally as if you ware panning an image on a computer screen.

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When I move the scope I imagine I'm not moving the scope but pulling/pushing the object I'm watching.

Example: If i see Jupiter drifting up, I pull down the handle as if I was grabbing the planet and pulling it down. Same for left right. After a couple minutes it comes naturally as if you ware panning an image on a computer screen.

:icon_eek: What a perfect way to remember it.. thanks!!

I'll try it next time i get my hands on my friend's 20" Obsession. :)

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It does feel strange at first to track an object nudging the scope the opposite way to what you would expect, but it soon comes naturally. You have already noticed one benefit of the dob - you can make the most of any breaks in the clouds :)

Have fun with it and keep posting your observing reports - we love to read them.

Steph

Love the name dobserver :icon_eek:

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That is a very nice looking scope.

I may upgrade to a huge Dob when the time comes, the look on my wife's face will be a picture...

Probably a silly question but what is the black thing over the end of the scope ?

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Hi Sunwind. Your story matches mine. I have just bought the same scope and I see you have a Wixey piggy-backed as well. I also used it for the first time on the moon the other night. Really impressed with the view, even though there was some thin cloud hanging around it. It's certainly a step up from my 7x50 bins.

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Probably a silly question but what is the black thing over the end of the scope ?

Could be a dew-shield, which seems unnecessary with a tube that size, or maybe a counter-measure to a street lamp or security light.

Sunwind, what is that on the end of the tube ?

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Mystery solved, it just seemed unusual to have a dew-shield on a scope that size, but it does look quite cool :icon_eek:

The BBC are forecasting some clear skies over the weekend, so fingers crossed.

well I saw pictures of some other guys scope which is the same and he had one so I figured I needed it.. plus as you said it can help with blocking stray light I do have a bit of a street light problem shining into my back yard

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You do need a dewshield if you ever intend to be out at star parties - I have seen bigger Dobs than 12" dew up when the going gets tough. They also help cut down stray light from getting into the back end of the EP. Modern Reflectors always seem to have very short front ends making a dewshield almost mandatory. I have yet to be out almost anywhere without needing mine.

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I just had another small session, I really wanted to see mars and a nebula so I waited until orion was high up enough and the clouds cleared enough to see, and off I went..

I was very underwhelmed by what I saw with Mars, I was expecting a medium-sized round disc with a bit of detail, but all I saw was what looked like an orange star twice a normal stars size.

To make sure the scope wasn't just in need of collimation or whatnot I checked out the moon and it looked perfect as usual, crazy detail and very sharp and clear so I figured the scope was working fine..

I managed to find the orion nebula fairly easily, I could definetly make out the cloudy nebulosity and I dunno whether or not it was my eyes playing tricks on me but I think I might have detected very very faint green or blue tints, but it was so faint I couldn't tell very well. I read that the nebula is so big you can't even fit it into your view but what I saw easily fit into the middle of my 10mm EP, i'm guessing with the full moon out in the same direction didn't help with the "pollution" from the moon maybe I would have seen more without that?

I have only a 10mm and 25mm EP that came supplied with it, how can I get a better view of Mars, do I need to pick up a 5mm EP to get more magnification? What is the best thing I can do in terms of EP's to get a better view of Mars and, other planets when I go looking for them?

**Oh, and yesterday I took it out for about 20minutes and tried to spot the Pleiades, I *think* I found it because I was looking in the right area and it was about 6-7 bright stars in a clump but I couldn't really see the resemblance aside from the general shape to pictures I found online, think I saw a hint of blue here aswell. I was only out for 20minutes because of clouds, I don't think i'm going to bother going out again unless the forecast explicitly states it will be a clear night, otherwise it's just too much hassle to go "oh, the clouds are gone!" and then taking 15minutes to set everything up and then some more clouds come looming over the horizon to spoil my fun :icon_eek:

edit: I tried to take some pictures of mars with my crappy digital camera just to show you what I was seeing:

http://img137.imageshack.us/img137/8950/s1051662.jpg

http://img30.imageshack.us/img30/8728/s1051663.jpg

http://img39.imageshack.us/img39/285/s1051664.jpg

It was pretty much like that except it was a lot smaller in the eyepeice, and it was more orange than yellow.

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I was very underwhelmed by what I saw with Mars, I was expecting a medium-sized round disc with a bit of detail, but all I saw was what looked like an orange star twice a normal stars size.

Mars is very far at the moment, when it's at opposition (meaning the earth is in between mars and the sun) it will have it's greatest apparent size. It's also a small planet so it never get's as big as jupiter.

See the table in this page. It haves the opposition dates and the apparent size on the last column (the highest the better).

Next opposition is in Jan 2010, it will look about twice the current size. Be sure to look, it happens once every 2/3 years... (You're probably thinking the same I did. I'm also new to astronomy and patience is not one of my qualities... Look at the bright side: At least you won't see everything in a year and store the scope in some dusty closet... :icon_eek:)

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ok, so the poor image of mars wasn't my scopes fault or the weather, in Jan next year will I be able to see it well with the eyepeices I have or should I think about getting a new/better one than the supplied ones for it since this only happens every 2/3 years?

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