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Just got first telescope :)


TwoSheds
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I've just ordered my first telescope from First Light Optics after a fair bit of research, including reading threads on here so I thought it would be an idea to get signed up.

I went for a SkyWatcher 200p on an EQ5 mount as that seems to be a really well-rated scope for beginners.

I'm lucky enough to live in the north of Scotland, but unlucky enough to be within the light pollution zone of Aberdeen so I'll hopefully drive a few miles into the mountains every now and then for some really good dark sky views. I've seen the clear night sky from a very dark location a few times before so I know it's worth the short journey into the big empty space to my immediate West.

Other interests are beer and computers, and reading about anything interesting.

Astronomy experience so far: standing in the garden looking at the pleiades and the moon and various other things with binoculars. Can't wait for the scope to arrive now :)

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Congrats on your scope, I've got the Skywatcher130 and have been really impressed with it so the 200 I expect will be even better.

Jupiter is the one to observe at the moment on a clear night and Saturn is in the East in the small hours if you're a night owl.

Happy observing and good luck!

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Hi Twosheds and welcome to the forum.

Blimey your off to a good start with your choice of mount and scope so you'll be in for some treats. I think those 'other interests' of yours will come in handy at some point when the weather doesn't clear - how's it been in your neck of the woods?

I too have to travel to a dark site to escape the light of a big city but actually, I prefer to observe away from home as you don't feel the need to start creeping around in the early hours of the morning. If you're with others you can also have a good chat about what you're looking at as well!

Clear skies soon

James

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Congrats on your scope, I've got the Skywatcher130 and have been really impressed with it so the 200 I expect will be even better.

Jupiter is the one to observe at the moment on a clear night and Saturn is in the East in the small hours if you're a night owl.

Happy observing and good luck!

I've been looking at Jupiter every clear night on my way home lately. I can't wait to see it in the scope :)

Blimey your off to a good start with your choice of mount and scope so you'll be in for some treats. I think those 'other interests' of yours will come in handy at some point when the weather doesn't clear - how's it been in your neck of the woods?

I too have to travel to a dark site to escape the light of a big city but actually, I prefer to observe away from home as you don't feel the need to start creeping around in the early hours of the morning. If you're with others you can also have a good chat about what you're looking at as well!

It has been very clear all of the last week or so, so that will come to an end the day my telescope arrives. We had about two months of solid snow at the end of 2010 which is a bit colder than usual. Luckily the council here do have a few snowploughs so things proceed quite smoothly but snowclouds don't do the stars any good.

I am quite lucky light-pollution wise really because it's still very good, you can only see a faint city glow from the house and it's quite easy to see satellites and stuff passing. I usually get used to it until I am somewhere properly rural on a clear night and get reminded of what space is supposed to look like.

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It's a bit sad really when you think that most people rarely ever see a truly dark sky. It makes all the difference in finding your targets and of course when you actually view them, and here I'm thinking about galaxies and nebula. These red dot finders are excellent if you know where to point them but with my typical skies at home, the only thing you can see to point it at is the moon!

I know this sounds daft but it is quite exciting waiting for those boxes to arrive. Instinct tells me to rip them open and to get stuck in but my more sensible head says take your time and savour each box :):D Your right about the postman bringing with him some clouds to unpack as well - hopefully not.

James

Edited by JamesM
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It's a bit sad really when you think that most people rarely ever see a truly dark sky.

I can remember the exact time I saw one for the first time which is possibly even more sad.

I was in the far west of the Isle of Skye in an area that hasn't been accessible by road until the 1950s when road building techniques and the cars of the day finally conquered the terrain. Even on foot the journey was never practical and would be done by boat instead. As a result, the area has survived as an entire valley with only a few crofting cottages and a church in it, and 150 miles from the nearest city.

It's like looking at a long-exposure photograph of the night sky but for real.

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