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Quest for the Ring

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That Ring Nebula is a tricky little [removed word] to find at first, but fairly cool once you got it. I am using the two lenses that came with my 8" dob but after reading several threads i think i need a 5mm lens and/or a Barlowe lens. Should i be able to see colours in the ring ,or is it just a ghostlike circle.Any advice on the lenses would be great.

I also went looking for the bubble nebula ,no joy though what should i be looking for



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I don't think hitting the Ring Nebula with too high a magnification will enhance your view of it. Anything above x120 will reveal no more, and the resultant light loss will dim it too.

There is no colour other than it's smokey Grey, until you Image it of course.


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If you have an interest in DSO one of the best and reasonably priced publications is : Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders, Paperback at 519 pages, covers all 110 Messier and multitudes of NGC and many others, star maps/locating FOV, photos of the actual star field and descriptions of what you can expect to see in average sized scopes and bins for every DSO, a very much advanced TL@O, has already been endorsed by a number of forum members. I have no connection with the sale or promotion of this book but after reading about it on the forum I purchased a copy and I have to say that at some £16 it`s one of the best informative works on how to find your target I have and is in regular use.

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If you are interested in nebulae an O-III or UHC filter is worth considering - they can make the difference between seeing something and nothing at all on some objects.

Edited by John
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The key to finding the Ring neb is quite a low power eyepiece, at least whilst you find it (sometimes, just sometimes, you can push the magnification once you've got it, but usually it's not worth it). Using your finderscope, point your telescope directly between the two bottom bright stars in Lyra and the Ring will be in your field of view. You're looking for something that just doesn't quite look like all the other stars. As soon as you spot it, you'll know what I mean.

You can then centre it and try zooming in further if you like. Good luck!

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The Ring is somewhat underwhelming visually, but IMO it looks better through a refractor as the contrast is better. Also, with a frac you can up the magnification quite a bit, my best views have come at over 120x with TV plossl or Baader Ortho.

You won't see the central star without a light bucket though, and visually you will see what looks like a slightly elliptical smoke ring. Pretty, though..

One other thing, I hate sighting objects with my reflector finder, it's something to do with awkward angles and lines of sight I think...I find it much easier through a refractor mounted finder...am I odd in this or do others find the same?



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Can find it in my 66mm, just a case of knowing where to look. Colours are only available to BIG scopes on BRIGHT objects. Why not have a crack at the dumbbell M27 in vulpecula. I find it be going left slightly from the pointy end of sagitta (looks like an arrow() and then follow the little chain of stars upwards... till you hit the fuzzy blob.

All the best


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