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Andromeda


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Hi ,

I need some advice....I currently have a 6" Skywatcher Explorer with 10mm/25mm eyepieces and 2 x Barlow and am completely new to this game.

I spent about an hour tonight trying to locate the Andromeda Galaxy but to no avail. I know where to look (thanks Stellarium!) but just can't find it! Can someone let me know what exactly I should be able to see with my current set up and even better than that....how to see it!!!

As I said I am completely new to this so please make it an idiot proof guide!

Thanks very much for your help

Mark

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I'm just back from Croydon Astro Group, I was at Kenley, I asked to see the andromeda the guy replied saying, You won't see it for another 5 - 6 months. It comes in winter, You just missed it. So did I. lol

I might be wrong though but that's what I'm told. I have a book from Star Glazing Live from Paul, It says it comes Oct to Dec. North and South.

I just saw the Great Orion Nebulae though. WoW.

Edited by Lurker
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I'm just back from Croydon Astro Group, I was at Kenley, I asked to see the andromeda the guy replied saying, You won't see it for another 5 - 6 months. It comes in winter, You just missed it. So did I. lol

I might be wrong though but that's what I'm told. I have a book from Star Glazing Live from Paul, It says it comes Oct to Dec. North and South.

I just saw the Great Orion Nebulae though. WoW.

You were told that you have to wait 5-6 months to see M31?

Thats RUBBISH.

Its right up there below Cassiopeia.

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I've been out there myself tonight. It's not the brightest thing in the sky by a long long way, but if you're used to spotting "smudges" you've got a chance! I waited until later into the night - around midnight in the NW sky just to the side of Cassiopeia just as Paul said.

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Ummm - Andromeda and the great galaxy M31 were quite visible earlier tonight - they are not ideally placed but can be seen and are still above the horizon right now in the West. Maybe not from Croydon though !

Use the freeware Stellarium programme to show you what's in the sky at any given time.

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Yep, Andromeda can be seen as smudge with the naked eye ingood seeing. You'll see a bit more of the smudge at about x50. Even at low magnification you might get the associated other smudges of M110 and M32.

Best thing you could get now is a Terad finder and print off a a set of Telrad charts from the websites. This'll open a whole universe of Messiers up.

Welcome to the world of fuzzies!

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this site may help, a field of view calc.. click 'switch to visual view'', select type of scope, eyepiece and what you intend to view ie M31 in the drop down box and it'll give you a good idea of what you can expect to see!

http://www.12dstring.me.uk/fov.htm

Good luck :evil6:

Edit: obviously it won't look like the picture, use it for scale...:) sorry

Edited by Glen
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I've stepped outside the door with 10x50 binocs every clear night all year and it's allways there somewhere. Being a dim object 2.5 million light years away I don't see much - but it is allways there. So long as you have a reasonably dark sky and reasonable "seeing" you should be able to locate it with a 6" reflector. I have street lights so I just stand between the hedge and the caravan lol.

In the binocs its just a smudge, in your scope it will be a slightly bigger smudge. Use a wide angle low power eyepiece - e.g. 25mm to 40mm. You have to use averted vision to get a little bit of detail even in a large dob. A good ep in a 16" dob you might be lucky enough to make out some dust lanes. But with a 6" newt it's just going to be a slightly better defined smudge.

Take a diagonal line from bottom right to top left of the great square in pegasus and extend. Take another line from the sharper point of Cassiopeia straight down (as if it were an arrow). Where the lines intersect you'll find andromeda just above to the right a little. When you see it you'll know - it's unmissable. :)

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Thanks guys. I did think that maybe the Andromeda galaxy doesn't vanish from the solar system for 6 mths.....

I'll get back out there and try again. Patience and persistence are the key I guess...

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I'm just back from Croydon Astro Group, I was at Kenley, I asked to see the andromeda the guy replied saying, You won't see it for another 5 - 6 months. It comes in winter, You just missed it. So did I. lol.

That's appalling! I can't believe someone from an Astro Society could have been so ill-informed and unhelpful!

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My method is too look for the great square in Pegasus then find the constellation of Andromeda which trails to the left/east follow along this to the second star (called Mirach) you should see another star just above Mirach the Andromeda galaxy is next to this. Use your 25mm ep and look for it between 6 and 7pm when it's highest in the sky. Good luck.

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You won't see it for another 5 - 6 months. It comes in winter, You just missed it.

I'm appalled. :) At this time of year, from the UK it's within 30 degrees of the zenith at ~8pm. You don't get a better view of it than at this time of year!

I would recommend a book to get you going ...

Turn Left at Orion: A Hundred Night Sky Objects to See in a Small Telescope - and How to Find Them: Amazon.co.uk: Guy Consolmagno, Dan M. Davis: Books

... which is a great reference of some of the best objects up there, with easy to follow instructions on how to find them.

Stellarium is a great tool and I use it a lot, but (IMO) that book is the best reference to get you started.

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Hello Yidoboy

I too have a sw 150p (just got it for xmas) so i am new to all this too.

Last night and night before is about the only clear nights i've had since i bought it,so after looking at the moon for 2 night i thought i'd try something else.

Andromeda galaxy was there at 9pm last night but i couldn't see it with naked eye,so yes straight onto stellaruim.Took about 15mins to find it just by pointing towards the more "yellow" stars next to it but it actually looked alot clearer through the finder scope.As soon as i put the standard 25mm ep in it vanished.I can see i will be buying a better low power ep soon!

Jupiter and its moons looked preety good too!

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Well! i was going to include this in my first light report, but ill quickly share with you.

I just got my 250px out into the wilderness at a superb dark site on salisbury plain.

in the stock 25mm eye piece with no filters i was able to make out a pretty darn good smudge in my scope and i thought i could see a bit of a dust trail, though i might be mistaken. you could also see a much lighter patch of light similar to the shape filling my FOV.

it was not what you'd expect from the images! but it was pretty damn special none the less!

I'm going to get a O-III filter of some sort to help bring out more nebulocity.

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it was not what you'd expect from the images! but it was pretty damn special none the less!

I'm going to get a O-III filter of some sort to help bring out more nebulocity.

Congratulations :)

Our eyes can't match what the imagers produce, alas, but still awsome that the light falling into your eyes has travelled all that way over 2 million years !

O-III filters and UHC's don't imact galaxies I'm afraid - they are good at nebulae though. Best thing to enhance galaxies are dark skies :evil6:

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Congratulations :evil6:

O-III filters and UHC's don't imact galaxies I'm afraid - they are good at nebulae though. Best thing to enhance galaxies are dark skies :eek:

And if you make it to the dark site, take another look at M31 :)

Oh boy does it respond well to a proper dark sky.

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Hello Yidoboy

I too have a sw 150p (just got it for xmas) so i am new to all this too.

Last night and night before is about the only clear nights i've had since i bought it,so after looking at the moon for 2 night i thought i'd try something else.

Andromeda galaxy was there at 9pm last night but i couldn't see it with naked eye,so yes straight onto stellaruim.Took about 15mins to find it just by pointing towards the more "yellow" stars next to it but it actually looked alot clearer through the finder scope.As soon as i put the standard 25mm ep in it vanished.I can see i will be buying a better low power ep soon!

Jupiter and its moons looked preety good too!

We were using our 150 Saturday night to observe M31 and using a 32mm Celestron Plossl we were able to frame M31 with it's two nearby galaxies (M32 & M110). It was a stunning sight indeed. This was from a dark site with good skies. But even from home we are able to see the three galaxies, all be it, a lot fainter.

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Congratulations :)

Our eyes can't match what the imagers produce, alas, but still awsome that the light falling into your eyes has travelled all that way over 2 million years !

O-III filters and UHC's don't imact galaxies I'm afraid - they are good at nebulae though. Best thing to enhance galaxies are dark skies :evil6:

Awwww :eek:

how would they be at bringing out the haze around the pleiades?

I've had one outing under dark skys and it was very turbulant and transparancy was dodgy too.

sorry to semi hijack the thread.

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Awwww :)

how would they be at bringing out the haze around the pleiades?

I've had one outing under dark skys and it was very turbulant and transparancy was dodgy too.

sorry to semi hijack the thread.

Well the "haze" around some of the Pleiades is nebulosity, so an O-III or UHC filter will enhance the contrast, a little (it's not the brightest nebulosity around !).

The light from a galaxy is made up, in the main, from the light of billions of stars, so the filters don't help with that.

Filters don't make nebulae brighter - they filter out some of the other wavelengths of light which makes what you want to see stand out a little more against the background.

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