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Somerset Novice - starters for 10


Kippersonic
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Hi - I'm a complete novice to looking up using something other than my eyes.

Have been bought a Sky-Watcher 114mm diameter reflector for my birthday - and now that the evenings aren't quite so chilly, I'm ready to go. Have to say that looking just at the moon close up for the very first time blew my cockles off.

I really would appreciate any steer on what, how and where I should be starting with; what can I realistically hope to get a good view of; what are other good websites for me to pore over?

Thanks - Kipper:hello2:

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Hi Kippersonic

Welcome to SGL from Wellington in Somerset.

I agree with Pete_L - get Turn Left at Orion and while you're waiting for it to be delivered have a look at Saturn - that should get your cockles going again!

Steve

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Hi Kipper and welcome to SGL

You'll certainly get good views of the planets, saturn will also blow your cockles off. It's rising in the east about 7.30ish and will be high enough to view from 9pm (although the later the better as it is viewed through less nasty atmosphere). In addition the brighter deep space objects will provide good views although, you have to keep your expectations in check, a hubble type nebula or galaxy is the product of long exposure imaging, visual astronomy will only show a grey fuzzy blob and then it can take a practised eye to see it.

I would suggest, when planning a session, whatever planets are on view, open star clusters (pleiades etc.) the moon - plenty of things to see there, and brigher nebula and galaxies (M42 orion nebula, M31 Andromeda galaxy).

Also try and get a copy "Turn Left at Orion", a great book for new scope owners with a good choice of easier to see objects, and download Stellarium, a fantastic free planetarium programme.

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Welcome Kipper!

Good advice above. Just take every opportunity you can, get out and enjoy the sky. Amazing what you can stumble across.

I've found the observing guides in the Sky at Night mag each month are really good with some great "guided tours" from Steve Richards.

I hope your corner of Somerset is less well street-lit than mine!:D

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Welcome to SGL Kipper, Im from Somerset too.. check out My site (most photo's taken from Bridgwater).

I recommend hunting down Saturn with your scope. Seeing it is an even more mind blowing experience than the moon through a scope.

I also recommend downloading Stellarium. Fantastic software and it will certainly help you find Saturn.

Matt

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welcome Kipper

I'm new to this as well

theres loads of great advice from a great bunch on here

As has already been said, Saturn is well worth hunting down, Stallarium is available both on PC and for iphone (both versions are free), as well as lots of other great astronomy apps (if you have an iPhone)

Have fun, enjoy the Sky's and persevere

best of luck

Stick

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