Sunday, September 25, 2011

I can haz telescope?

Guess who is the proud owner of a new 8" Dobsonian telescope?

Me - silly. I chose a 'Dob' because of its value for money. You'd have a hard time getting more light capturing capability from any other type of telescope without spending a lot more. I went with an 8" model because the bigger ones can get a bit unwieldy (heavy) and their mirrors are a challenge to keep cool without a fan. I don't want to be tethered to power to enjoy this hobby. My telescope is not a 'go-to' model, meaning that there is no onboard computer-controlled motor that points the telescope at the object of your choosing. This model is old school - if you want to see it, you have to know how to find it.

My first night out with the beast was not entirely productive. My finder scope was way out of alignment, so it was hard to locate anything. Jupiter and the moon were very low in the East on my first night out, so there wasn't much to look at without an aligned finder scope.

My second night morning out was much more productive. Got up at 5am to look at Jupiter and some of its moons, Mars and the waning crescent of the moon through the telescope. The seeing conditions were pretty awful, but whatever.

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