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About to make an assault on the Horsehead

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#1 N. Ham

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 06:10 PM

I first remember looking disappointingly for the horsehead with a Kmart 3" Newtonian back in 1972. Not sure what went wrong, but even from dark skies I could never make it out. :tonofbricks: This spring I purchased an 18' Dob and just got in an early Christmas order for an H-beta Lumicon filter from Astronomics before they were seasonally back ordered.

Rain and clouds should be out of Middle GA and the moon old enough to allow a shot at it this weekend.

Wish me luck, I am going in!

#2 cliff mygatt

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 08:27 PM

Best of luck, I have bagged it at a dark sky site with my 12 inch Zambuto. I took me about an hour as I was just off the field by about a degree, once I figured that out, there is was! I put in my H-beta and sure enough. It was nice to see visually and you should have no problem with an 18 inch scope. Good Luck!

#3 azure1961p

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 08:38 PM

The 18" from a decent 6.2-5 site oght to get it for you without question along with the filter. The dark intrusion, while subtle is unmistakeable.
I had my doubts before looking as it was my first visual but it was done with certainty. Very rewarding view. Intrusion seemed more thumblike than horse but the view was had while standing in a line. Im confident with more time and some otger oculars the horses nose woulve popped.

I envy your upcoming observations.

Pete

#4 jeff heck

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 09:05 PM

With an 18" and a H-beta filter from a good dark site you should need no luck. What ep will you be using?
I saw it Halloween night with my new 16" from a green dark site. A 24Pan gave the best view as the exit pupil was larger than with a 13E.

#5 stevecoe

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:14 PM

Here is an image I mooched from Chris Schur. Notice the double star just to the right of the Horsehead in this image. It is key for me to find the open notch in IC 434, the streamer that is the backlight for the dark Horsehead.

I hope that helps;
Steve Coe

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#6 Carol L

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 11:25 PM

Good luck! Finally got it myself last February... it's not much to look at but it's a milestone observation.

#7 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 02:04 AM

An eyepiece producing a 5mm exit pupil seems to work well on B33.

http://home.ix.netco...b/MEyepiece.htm

Dave Mitsky

#8 marcink

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 02:48 PM

I attacked it many times with 8" under very dark skies and failed. Oh well, I gotta speed up my ATM 16" project...

#9 blb

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 03:27 PM

Much more important than the size of your telescope is the quality of the sky. It really needs to be a dark transparent sky to stand a chance. If you can't see the Flame Nebula, NGC 2024, you will never see the very faint nebula that B33 is in. If you can see NGC 2024 then pan south to the faint nebula NGC 2023 around a magnitude 7.8 star. If this nebula can be seen, then it's a go for the Horsehead. Pan slowely west to a really faint nebula running north to south. If you can see this nebula, IC 434, then continue south to the Horsehead. It will be a dark notch in IC 434. You will stand your best chance using a h-beta filter and an eyepiece that will give you an exit pupil of between 4mm to 5mm's. Just remember DARK SKY.

#10 John K

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 06:55 PM

I bagged this nebula last summer with my 15" scope and a UHC filter.

#11 N. Ham

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 08:22 PM

I'll be using a 31mm or 22 mm Nagler.

#12 N. Ham

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 08:29 PM

Just want to reach this milestone, since it was one of the first things I ever looked for. I am not expecting it to knock my sox off. To have seen so many photos of this years ago, and never a note about you'll never see this with less than a really large telescope for a 10 year old made me wonder what I and my Kmart scope were doing wrong. It was only about fifteen years ago that i realized how faint this is.

#13 Feidb

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 09:57 PM

The last time I saw it was from Furnace Creek in Death Valley in January, 2011. It was completely invisible in regular light but as soon as I plugged in the H-beta, it was plain as day. I could see the horse's snout and everything, not just a dark notch. I tried again in October but the skies were too muddy and I never put the filter in. Should have, but I had other targets in mind that night and got lazy. There is still time. I was more interested in the Witch Head. Never saw it either. I've had great luck seeing the Horsehead at 57X, 70X and 87X.

#14 Rick Woods

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Posted 17 November 2011 - 10:02 PM

I'm going to try again this year too. I saw it *once* with the help of averted imagination (well maybe a little better than that). But, after having cataracts removed, I'm hoping to see it better now. Everything else sure looks better!

#15 David Knisely

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Posted 18 November 2011 - 03:21 AM

I once viewed the Horsehead in my 9.25 inch SCT with the H-Beta filter from my magnitude 5.6 driveway here in-town. It was more of a notch than something with a lot of structure, but I was a little startled that I managed to do it from here. Clear skies to you.

#16 Dain

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Posted 18 November 2011 - 05:05 PM

I was fortunate enough to bag the Horsehead twice a few years ago in my 8" f/6 from a relatives property in some great skies. I haven't had the 'scope out there since. I'm planning to do it again soon! Maybe this new moon.. :cool:

#17 Keith Rivich

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Posted 19 November 2011 - 09:45 PM

I have shown the horse-head to many "horse-head first timers" and the two comments I hear the most are: It's much bigger then I thought it was gonna be" and "it's upside down". Keep those two things in mind and you will have no trouble!

#18 blb

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Posted 19 November 2011 - 10:22 PM

That is exactly what I thought last year when I observed it. I thought it would be much smaller than it was.

#19 Matt2003

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Posted 20 November 2011 - 10:47 PM


Dain,

Go for it guy! After missing the SNs, you must feel a need to get some serious challenges done.
And oh, an 8 inch? I wasn't going to even attempt it. Of course, it is out of the question from home. Ft. Davis? Maybe. Some where in South West Texas, anyway.

Clear skies & dark!
Matt

#20 deepskydarrell

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 01:28 AM

I agree with blb. When the Flame looks good, the Horsehead is there. I hop by following the centre of the flame and arc through NGC 2023 and keep curving into the HH. And yes, it's not too impressive and it's bigger than expected.

DSD.

#21 Matt2003

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 01:30 PM


Darrell,

Which scope did you use for your view? I'm thinking you used the 16 inch, but given what was said up there, I'm not entirely sure..

Clear Skies,
Matt

#22 blb

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 03:04 PM

Given a dark enough sky, he could see it in both the 8" or the 16".

#23 bgman

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 03:22 PM

My 1st view (after many unsuccessful tries!) was thru a 12" dob and I realized that it was much bigger than I expected. I use the two small stars that stevecoe mentioned in his post to "lock in". I have tried and seen it many times since then and it is always on my "list" any time I am out observing and it is visible. Dark skies and transparency make the difference on the this object for sure!

Will

#24 siriusandthepup

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 05:31 PM

Good luck! Finally got it myself last February... it's not much to look at but it's a milestone observation.



Check out Carol's link to her sketch. That's EXACTLY what I've seen with my 16" and an H-Beta filter. Great job on the sketch Carol. :bow:

To see the horsey's nose always seemed to take a larger scope. A friend's 28" showed the nose pretty well.

#25 deepskydarrell

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Posted 21 November 2011 - 11:23 PM

Matt,

I've been predominately using my 16 inch. About ten years ago I was up above a foggy inversion layer with my 8 inch and saw the Flame like I've never seen it since. Tried so hard for the HH but didn't have any filter. Still waiting for those conditions with the 16 but winter observing on the Wet Coast is rare.

DSD.






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