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What should I look for?

  1. Jul 7, 2007 #1

    I have purchased a Sky Watcher 650mm focal lenght and a 130mm diameter. It came with a *2 barlow lense and a 25mm wide angle and 10mm super plossl lense. I have also recently purchased a 4mm super plossl lense. Just right now I found out that my telescope was 650mm and not 900mm, but that's ok because I intend to upgrade when I get the money.
    What I am quering is what can I expect to find with this? I have happened upon Saturn once by mistake and saw the rings, and obviously the moon, but other than that I have been picking stars at random. Is it possible to see nebulas and the such and what is the best place to look for interesting celestial bodies?
    I live in Wales in the United Kingdom and I will probably be getting my telescope out again tonight at about 10pm GMT.
    I will appreciate any guidance.


    p.s. this is my first post on this forum
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 7, 2007 #2


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    You could try starting with the Messier objects. I think you should be able to see most of those with a telescope your size (depending on how much light pollution you have to deal with). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Messier_objects
    It might be a good idea for you to pick up a good star atlas to help you navigate the night sky.
  4. Jul 8, 2007 #3
    Thanks, I'll try that
  5. Jul 8, 2007 #4


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    You should also get a star atlas of some kind which you can use outside. My personal favorite for beginners is the one by Wil Tirion.

    Your goal for the time being is simply to learn the constellations and get your bearings in the sky. Start with one small part of the sky, like the constallation Lyra (nearly overhead this time of the year), and use it as a starting point for identifying and exploring neighboring parts of the sky.

    I also strongly suggest that you find any astronomy clubs in your area and attend some of their meetings or star parties. You'll be amazed how much you can learn in a short period of time with an experienced guide!

    - Warren
  6. Jul 9, 2007 #5
    Thanks chroot, when I get enough money I will buy that book. As for astronomy clubs, I will see to that one as there is one in Swansea where I live.

    I was out last night and looking to the south there appeared to be a bright star. When I looked at it through a 10mm, then a 4mm, It was bigger than a star, with free little dots around this. Am I right in assuming this was Jupiter?

    Also what you said about skymarks sounds like good advice.

  7. Jul 9, 2007 #6


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    Definitely Jupiter. Did you see any bands?
  8. Jul 9, 2007 #7
    It was very hard to notice but I thought I may have seen something like swirling bands.
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