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Skybrowser

What was the first thing you saw through a telescope which got you hooked?

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For me it was the rings of Saturn, my first scope was a Lidls finest and I still remember the first time I managed to see a blurred hint of Saturns' rings through it, I was bowled over.

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The girl down the street sunbathing ;

mine was the moon . i was mesmerised by its beauty and to see it as if i could touch out and touch it was a once in a life time experience ,

Can not count how many times i have looked at it now ,but nothing will be as good as the first time .

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I was given a book called 'Secrets of the Sky' when I was about 6. I was, and still am hooked. 28 years later my love for the sky is still burning. I think I maybe about to buy my first telescope.

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Actually, I don't know what got me hooked. I could say Saturn because I remember being amazed at seeing it through a cheapo telescope but I think it was probably The Ladybird book 'the night sky' which has lovely illustrations (as all the ladybird series has), with interesting descriptions of the mythology behind the constellations as well as some of the major objects visible. That and the observers book of Astronomy by a certain 'Mr P. Moore' whoever he is :icon_eek:. I used to read and re-read the chapter on choosing a telescope and day-dreaming about owning a 3 inch refractor or a 6-inch newt and looking at the planets. (It would be a couple of years before I saved up enough to buy a 6 inch mirror set (about £100 in 1980) and make my own scope-v. exciting, I've always loved designing & building telecopes). I like the sentence about the 3-inch bringing 'many hundreds of coloured stars, double stars, clusters and nebulae within range'. It feels strange reading that chapter again now after 33 years since the first time and rekindles that daydreamy fascination.

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I was given a book called 'Secrets of the Sky' when I was about 6. I was, and still am hooked. 28 years later my love for the sky is still burning. I think I maybe about to buy my first telescope.

Don't dither (or worry) too much about buying a scope. Any reasonable starter scope (look s/h) will do! Nothing beats seeing the stars through your own scope, at your own leisure. Look for something that you can set up quickly, so it does not gather dust in storage. Looking at second-hand stuff you automatically cut down the number of options to those that are available at the time.

Almost any reasonable scope you buy will give you sights you will never forget. Only when you run into the limitations of your first scope should you move on to something better.

Good luck in making a choice.

Cheers

Michael

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OK - this is my third entry on this thread and I think I've got it cracked ! ; Daydreaming - that's what got me hooked, imagination, fantasising about peering into the vastness, the inky blackness and seeing wondrous things, especially planets. Just me and the universe together.

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Well, being "new" I pointed my telescope at the easiest object to find in the sky,.. being the moon and yes,..

I was hooked!

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Well, being "new" I pointed my telescope at the easiest object to find in the sky,.. being the moon and yes,..

I was hooked!

It's only when you start doing deep-sky stuff that the moon starts to annoy :icon_eek:

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As it was over 40 years ago I can't remember precisely the first thing. However I was intrigued by the fact that stars have different colours, which are so much easier to see through a telescope.

One of my teachers at the time refused to believe that stars were anything other than white, and refused the offer of a look through the telescope. Mind you she did teach English.

After that I bought H A Rey's book "A new way to see the stars", from which I learnt the constellations and a whole load of basic astronomy. Still have the book.

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I was hooked already before I got a small scope, however, I have very fond memories of peering at the Pleaides with a tiny Tasco refractor perched on my window sill, looking east as they rose over the treetops. It was autumn, 1981, and I was ten years old LOL You know how I remember? I used to listen to the Top 40 on a Sunday afternoon and I can remember the songs LOL

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It's only when you start doing deep-sky stuff that the moon starts to annoy :icon_eek:

I agree with that completely and where I am,.. the auroras also become a nuisance!

I know,.. I know,.. I shouldn't complain!

Isabelle

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Betelgeuse tonight, it was the first star I read about (today) and succesfully navigated to via Synstar and tracked. Very moving experience despite the moon washing out the nearby stars.

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Saturn.

I'd been a naked eye and binooculars observer since about eight years old. I'd bought lots of film SLR equipment about 1982, including a 500m f8 telephoto lens and an attachment that converted lenses into a 10x its focal length telescope. In those days I had to work out where and when the planets were visible from an almanac. Saturn should be outside my bedroom window about er, 3am. Still, set up my telephoto lens and eyepiece arrangement on a photographic tripod ready, and set the alarm.

Assuming that planets would be very difficult to spot, I spent about 10 mins using a compass to aim in approx the right direction, but all I could see was a bright 'star' in front of me. "May as well have a look at that before I go back to sleep" I thought, and BANG! What a feeling, to see Saturn with my own eyes with such a rudimentary setup. It still gives me a thrill every time I see it.

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Not through a scope, but the first moon landing in 1969. I was babysitting and could see the full moon through the window. The thought that there was a lunar module up there was mind blowing. When I got home we stayed up all night watching the first steps onto the lunar surface!

For those of you too young to remember it

Edited by kharga

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Can remember being on holidays in the canaries and giving a guy on the street a couple of pesetas for a look trough his scope.

It was Saturn and all the ring where in view.

that was about 15 years ago, don't know what his setup was.

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Not through a scope, but the first moon landing in 1969. I was babysitting and could see the full moon through the window. The thought that there was a lunar module up there was mind blowing. When I got home we stayed up all night watching the first steps onto the lunar surface!

For those of you too young to remember it

I was seven at the time, and got my parents to allow me to see the event, which was well after my normal bedtime. It was amazing!

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Despite the 'wow' factor i got from looking at the moon through a cheap spotting scope as a kid, Hale Bopp was the icing on the cake for me.

Couldn't stop looking at it through my bino's and bought my first scope (4" refractor) to get a better look (sort of)...

A friend then explained to me that Jupiter was up and would look lovely through my scope. I wasn't even sure i believed him until i got it in the eyepiece some nights later, after seeing the equatorial belts and moons do their transits i realized that i was hooked.

I have had a fair few years break from Astronomy due to work commitments mostly but my job role has changed and i now have the spare time to start observing again. Hence, A Skywatcher Newt 200P in the post.

I just can't wait to see the beautiful sights of the night sky again and i anticipate the same excitement (and silly dances) as my first views some 14 years ago.

Great thread!

Cheers

Dave

Edited by whooshbang

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It was the amazing Moon at half-phase, followed by Jupiter with its moons. I couldn't even pick out the cloud belts at the time because of my lack of knowledge, but it was great, nontheless.

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I remember standing in the garden as a 9 year old in 1969 staring at the moon in awe thinking that there was actually someone on it (I was actually hoping I might be able to see them!)

Roll on 30 years and I was working at a recording studio deep in the Surrey countryside when one of the guys I was working with took me out to his telescope and showed me Saturn - I was amazed and tracked it for ages.

Roll on another 10 years and there I was, 6am on Wednesday morning, with my own scope once again staring in wonder at Saturn....

So yes, my interest was sparked by the moon but the first thing I saw through a scope was Saturn

My only regret? - I wish I had got my scope years ago - I've a lot of catching up to do!

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It wasnt a view through a telescope that got me hooked.

45 years ago when I was 10 my dad used to point out the few constellations he knewto me; that got me interested. Then one day the family went on a visit to London and we went to the London Planetarium. Well I was gobsmacked:eek: and hooked.

We were too skint to get a scope and I never pestered for one because I knew it was an impossible dream at that time. 5 years later I lied about my age and got a paper round. This enabled me to get my 1st scope, a 50mm Tasco on table top tripod.

Well that was the most amazing thing that I had ever posessed. That cr@ppy little scope brought the craters of the moon, the rings of saturn and the belts of jupiter in my grasp.

I couldnt care less about severe chromatic aberation and astigmatism that little scope meant so much.

The rest they say is history

Philj

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Cor blimey, when I asked this question several weeks ago, I had no idea it would be viewed almost 1,000 times and have so many comments from everyone.

It seems to me that for the majority of the comments focus on a single moment in time, either when as a child we happen upon a telescope and have a look, only to be blown away by the view, or later in life - when exactly the same thing happens!

Like any hobby or interest, there are so many people who don't get it - I don't get joggers for example, but astronomy is different as everyone who looks through my scope, even at the moon, but especially Saturn always says exactly the same thing....Wow!..

Like most of us, I am longing for the day when I can afford even more kit to delve ever deeper, brighter and longer into the night sky.

Edited by Skybrowser

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I've always been interested and to be honest have no idea what I looked at first through a telescope...

But I do remember the first thing I looked at through MY first telescope.

It was an evening crescent Venus, through my unbranded 3" refractor on an Alt/Az mount and wooden tripod.

Ahhh those were the days - no wires :)

Ant

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Ditto Ant,

I've always had an underlying interest in space and the night sky. It just happened that last summer was pretty much the first time I had enough money and time to invest in a scope and learn about the night sky in my own way.

First thing I saw was probably one of the walls of my house as I figured out how to use my scope. The first planetary body was definitely Venus, the evening star I first observed way back in June.:)

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The moon was the first thing I saw through my telescope followed by Saturn.....which was really really tiny! Awesome all the same though! :)

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