C10NGT, Z8, 150 Rumak, XLT 150, C6, C5, SW5 Newt, 4.5 Ball, C102GT, C90, ST80, A70LF; 15x70, 25x100; Burgess BV; Paracorr II; T6 2.5, XO 2.58/5.1, Ethos-SX 3.7, Delos 4.5, TV Plossl 7.4-26, BCO 10, Hutech HC 12.5, Sterling 12.5-25, ES100 14, CZJ H 16/25, CZJ O 16, M5k UWA 24, T5 31, Ultrascopic 35, Titan-II 40; Bino Pairs M5k UWA 6.7, Baader Zoom 8-24, M5k SWA 24, TV Plossl 26, RKE 28.7; Zooms NZ 2-4, NZ 3-6, Leica ASPH 8.9-17.8, Baader 8-24; Baader Zoom Barlow, VIP Barlow
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Pointer to Other Useful Threads of Mine
Quote:As far as I know about Marathons: The old school rules are (1) use 1 instrument to view all objects, (2) all the objects need to be seen in 1 night's time, and (3) no electronics (everything must be found by TelRad or finderscope.
Quote:Our club however, wanting as many poeple to come out as possible and just enjoy the night sky, throws all those rules away. Over our "Messier Marathon Weekend", we allow GO-TO, we allow using observations combined over both nights, we allow viewing with any instrument, and we even allow sharing the views and letting the observation count.
Quote:Scott,Quote:As far as I know about Marathons: The old school rules are (1) use 1 instrument to view all objects, (2) all the objects need to be seen in 1 night's time, and (3) no electronics (everything must be found by TelRad or finderscope.Define "electronics." My watch has a battery. So do all my redlights and my dew control. So does my Android tablet. I suppose they all qualify as "electronics." SkySafari Pro on my Android tablet was a great help for star hopping to the challenging early evening objects in the west. But my Android tablet was not connected to the telescope's mount. I was using SSP as a scalable sky atlas, the same as a printed atlas except more convenient. Would SSP on an Android tablet be forbidden by the old-school Marathon rules? If so, that would be ridiculous, IMO. On the other hand, should manual setting circles be allowed?Mike
Quote:Scott,Quote:Our club however, wanting as many poeple to come out as possible and just enjoy the night sky, throws all those rules away. Over our "Messier Marathon Weekend", we allow GO-TO, we allow using observations combined over both nights, we allow viewing with any instrument, and we even allow sharing the views and letting the observation count. As long as it is for fun - why would anyone else do amateur astronomy? - I suppose goto is alright. At least the folks are learning about the Messier objects, even if they won't remember where they are or how to get there. Of course, without GPS, many of them wouldn't know where the dark site is or how to get there! Mike
Quote:Here's my take, for what it's worth. I think the whole spirit and premise of the Messier marathon is to test the observer's skill at finding the objects on their own, using nothing more than their memory or a chart and their ability to use them, and the telescope, to find them. In my mind electronic charts are ok, because you still have to look up the object and interpret and tranfer what you are seeing to the scope. I just can't see giving anyone a certificate for letting a goto scope do all the work finding an object. But, if they're just doing it for fun, and not an oberving certificate, then more power to them. Just my opinion.
Quote:Of course, without GPS, many of them wouldn't know where the dark site is or how to get there! Mike
Quote:I hardily agree with Scott and Mike on using Go-To, or as in my case DCS's. I use them extensively. I started out years ago before DSC's, back in the late 60's. At that time, as a teenager I learned how to do some star hopping, albeit I couldn't find a lot of the more obscure stuff. I took a 35 year break from astronomy and started up again 10 years ago using DSC's. The DSC's aren't perfect and things do occasionally go haywire so I fall back on charts and star hopping. Due to this lack of complete reliability I even added an 80mm Stellarvue finder to my scope. The finder is also great for things like Kimble's cascade, the Pleiades, etc. Friends I have who are very good at star hoping like having me around so they can verify that what they are seeing is indeed the object they were looking for! Or if they get completely confused they have me dial in the object and look through my Telrad to get orientated. I really admire those who can star hop way better than I can, but to me it is more about viewing than struggling to locate stuff. But, still as I often go out alone I never let some glitch with the DSC's ruin my night!
Telescopes: Celestron 14" SCT..Meade 10" ACF/SCT..Stellarvue 4" ED APO Mounts: UA UniStar Deluxe duel clamping saddle on a Celestron CGE tripod...UA UniStar Deluxe on a Meade field tripod and a UA UniStar Light on a UA light surveyor tripod. All with custom made "Manny Miles" eyepiece trays. Binoculars: Garrett Optical 10x50 Oberwerk 15x60. Eyepieces: TV Naglers, and Plossl's. Also Pentax 20XW, a Baader 31 Aspheric and a TMB 40 Paragon.
Quote:Hi Scott,A little off topic, but I am also a member of the ASKC and go down to Powell frequently when the moon is not bothersome. Do you ever go down there to observe? I am a star-hopper and use mostly my Meade 12" ACF or a nice C14 on an altaz mount, my S+T Sky Atlas, a 10x60 finder and a pair of 10x50 binoculars. I like to hunt for the Arp and Hickson galaxy group's and have found about 25 of the Hickson's so far in the last 10 months or so. Bill
**********************************************************************************************DavePlease look in my bio if you are interested in the equipment I use. (oops no bio anymore, look on my wall!)