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Deep Sky Observing Problems


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Hi everyone,

I have mostly been looking at the moon and the planets using my CPC800 and 17mm and 40mm Eyepiece along with a x2 barlow.

These give 50, 100, 120 and 240 times mag on my scope.

I have been able to see the orion nebula. How do i see the andromeda galaxy do I need more or less zoom can someone explain what I need pleeeeaaaassssee

Total beginner at this so please bare with me:iamwithstupid:

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do bear in mind Paul that most galaxies you will see will be small and nondescript fuzzy blobs. use low power. I see most detail in my dob using my 33MM 2" eyepiece at 48x.

imaging is a whole new world of time and money, I am trying to not even think about. computers, guide cameras, CCD cameras, hours of imaging on one subject and then a few more processing is not something I can even think about currently myself :0)

I think with a web cam you can get good results of planets and moon but DSOs are a whole different ball game.

Edited by Moonshane
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Hi Paul,

A note of caution. You may need to think about modin your 800 if you want to use the wedge you have. With all the weight attached to the scope and the wedge attached it will put a fair amont of stress on the bearings which I believe are made of plastic. If you search the forum you will find details of how to change the plastic bearings to metal one's.

As regards what dso's to look for, have you not got any star atlas's, or some astro software like Stellarium?, which is free to download from the web. Sorry I dont know how to put the links up yet, still pretty new to the forum.

Clear skies


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I do not just mean andromeda i mean any spiral galaxies or even any other DSO objects.

Again, as above. What you need is a dark sky - then you'll be able to see the Andromeda Galaxy with the naked eye and a great many other galaxies with binoculars.

Galaxies are extended objects, not like stars which are effectively points. As you magnify them they get bigger and fainter, and the background sky gets darker too. In order to see a galaxy through a telescope, you need to have a situation where the galaxy has enough contrast against the background. From light polluted sites this can be difficult or even impossible: you find you can only make the bright core of the galaxy visible, or perhaps none of it at all.

Rule of thumb: if you can see the Milky Way with the naked eye then your sky is dark enough for seeing galaxies easily. In practice it's possible to see a number of galaxies when the Milky Way is not naked-eye, but don't expect it to be easy.

Other than a dark sky, the most important thing is a good map (with stars down to at least mag 6, preferably more), so that you know exactly where to look. GOTO will get you there quicker, but a map will still help you figure out why you can't see anything when you get there.

Hint for seeing DSOs: make sure your eyes are as dark-adapted as possible. If there are lights around, cover your head so that you can't see them. Be patient and give your eyes plenty of time to adjust. When you've found a DSO, start with low power and work up until you find the best view.

Try M81/82 in Ursa Major. Good luck!

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