Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

CrazyCloud

If you could give a beginner one piece of advice it would be......

Recommended Posts

Hi all!

Just got my first scope, now I'm waiting for the rain and cloud to clear so I can start my first observation (well, try my first observation, to be honest the dials and what not are a touch intimidating!). So in the mean time, to be of help to both myself and the other green astronomers, I thought I'd pose you the title question:

"If you could give a beginner one piece of advice it would be......"

Everyone has been a beginner and I think it would be interesting to see what the more experienced heads come up with, whether it is sage advice, equipment care or technical know how, it would all be useful!

Over to you!

Dan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forget those big and grand sounding numbers called Magnification.

Most scope manufacturers lie about what theirs can do and it is pretty meaningless as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't get your expectations to high, especially if you have been looking at lots of pictures of deep space objects. The real night sky is nothing like the pictures you see and this leads to lots of disappointment from new starters.

There is lots of beauty above your head just not like its depicted in images and books.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My advice would be to be patient and don't get frustrated if you can't at first see what others are seeing with similar equipment. With a few exceptions, astro objects are subtle and the details don't just "jump" out at you. Most of the time it's either the viewing conditions or lack of experience that prevents you from seeing what you hope to but it's all too easy to jump to the conclusion that something is wrong with the scope / eyepieces etc.

Also take the time to get to know the operation of your scope and carefully align the finder in daylight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Dan, I'd say find & join a good astronomy club. Most are very helpful

& friendly, & will give good advise.

Cheers, Ed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don,t be drawn in by the big glossy adverts for big glossy telescopes (as i was :D)

There is much enjoyment to be had with modest equipment.

Join the forums, the best source of info around.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Use SGL! This place is wealth of information and friendly advice, and gets you through the times when you feel really disheartened.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join an astronomy society or visit a star party first to get an idea of what telescopes are like (size, weight, type, and capabilities). Get a look through some scopes and understand what you can see so your expectations are set realistically.

Take the missus with you and obtain agreement on what you're getting her into. Get an extremely well paid job, or win the lottery or pools - you're gonna need it lol.

That's my advice :D

Edited by brantuk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Find youre way around the night sky with a pair of binos first :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Start a logbook/journal to record your observations, sketches, thoughts, etc.

Most importantly though, take your time with things.

Relax and have fun. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Realise that no single scope can do everything well. That's why most here on SGL have at least two.

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't take up imaging, it's a hobby where you spend huge amounts of money on small bits of aluminium that don't fit each other :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dont touch the scope with your bare hands at 2am in the middle of winter :D

Or, to be more sensible.... dont look at the sun through it. Thats the first rule I will be teaching my son when hes old enough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Take time to learn about your equipment, learn how to set up your mount correctly, start off slow, the planets are easy to find, most of the time.

Try and find 1 new object each time you go out observing, and learn to Star Hop, and signposts.

Get a pair of binoculars, these help for wide field views.

Ray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Remember to consider what it is that you are actually looking at.

For example, the faint misty patch that is M31 may be quite uninspiring in the eyepiece at 2.00am on a cold winter morning, especially when you've been looking at those impresive Hubble images on the internet. But remember you are seeing the light from another galaxy some 3 million light years away, and that those photons hitting your retina began their journey across space before our Human ancestors were even standing upright...

Tends to puts things back into perspective.

Lee.

Edited by StarMan1701

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get a scope that's really easy and quick to set up so that you can grab some observing times between clouds, and get a red dot finder and take the time to set it up very accurately (saves so much time and frustration).

Oh, and don't forget to wrap up warm!

Helen

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Study object you see, don't just look at them. Remember that your eyes need to adapt to the dark, and require time to do so. You won't see a nebulous object very well at all, if you have been blinded by a street lamp, or a neighbours security light.

Dark adaption is one of the best tools you have when observing.

Good Luck.

Ron.:D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Enjoy and marvel at what you can see through your scope, rather than what you cannot see.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Avoid the Hubble photos! In fact, unless your an imager, avoid any photos as they will always be "better" than the thing your seeing with your own eyes, especially once your past the top 10 "wows"; once you have the right level of expectation you will appreciate what you are seeing more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.