New to all this....

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New to all this....

Postby milky way kid » Wed Jan 04, 2006 4:50 pm

Hi everyone - this is my first post and at the age of 26 I'm totally new to astronomy.....shame on me.
About a month ago I bought an 8" Newtonian reflector off ebay but was massively disappointed with the optics and general quality of the scope.....in fact the smaller mirror fell out and landed on the primary mirror the other day. Should have known better really.
Anyway, I've decided to get a decent scope from a reputable dealer - have considered all types of different scopes but am posting on here for some advice hopefully.
I basically want to be able to view deep space objects such as nebulas from my house on the outskirts of Coventry. The skies can be surprisingly dark here but I would be able to transport a scope up to about an 8" Schmidt-Cassegrain to a darker site. What are the best scopes for viewing nebulas? Also - with filters are you able to see the colour reflected/emitted from nebulas through the telescope or do you only see the colour on long-exposure photography?
Thanks in anticipation!
Jon
milky way kid
 
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RE: New to all this....

Postby Chanctonbury » Wed Jan 04, 2006 11:30 pm

Jon,

I am sorry to hear that you have had such a poor experience with your first telescope. Better luck with your next purchase.

Seeing colour in nebulae visually is rather unlikely I am afraid - it is the power of long exposure photography that achieves this. For capturing nebulae, you want a fairly modest focal length to give a reasonably wide FOV with lots of light collecting power.

Chanctonbury
 
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RE: New to all this....

Postby big dipper » Wed Jan 04, 2006 11:30 pm

Welcome to our forum Jon

As Steve says, sorry that your first scope was such a bad experience. Your suggestion of an 8" SCT sounds like a good one to me. My second scope was an 8" SCT & it served me well til I upgraded to my 'gutbuster' 11" SCT. An 8" SCT is a good choice for most types of observing projects. Although the focal ratio is usually f/10, this can be shortened with a focal reducer from the likes of Meade or Celestron. Being a shortish telescope, it is pretty portable to carry to a dark site as well.

I'm afraid that you are going to have to put up with grey/white views of nebulae. But they will still excite! Fringes of colour are normally only reserved for 18"+ light buckets at the likes of the Texas Star Party.

Here's a link to a site that I generally recommend for beginners to read before deciding on a scope. Hope you find it useful. [url=http://www.scopereviews.com/begin.html]http://www.scopereviews.com/begin.html[/url]

BTW it's never too late to enter into this nutty hobby of ours. Good luck & happy stargazing.
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RE: New to all this....

Postby milky way kid » Thu Jan 05, 2006 5:33 pm

Many thanks for the welcoming replies and advice - much appreciated. Slightly disappointing to find I won't see the colour of nebulae (even with filters?) but as you say I'm sure I'll appreciate seeing them just as much in grey/white when I do actually see them!!
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