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Observing >> Deep Sky Observing

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N. Ham
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What was the first galaxy you ever observed?
      #5860929 - 05/14/13 08:51 PM

I have to start at he beginning. Studied astronomy first at age nine. Got a 3 inch reflector from Kmart when I was 10. Technically it was a Newtonian, but that is a smear on the man's name! I did observe Saturn with it which planted a seed in me that germinated with the first bright comet in the mid nineties. Bought a cheap 465 power refractor which was a disaster. Rescued myself with a CG-11. Quite a leap, but I did survive the learning curve. That thing was hard to point for a late 30s beginner with its focal length around over 2200 mm. Frustration ruled my first few outings until one night star hopping in fairly light polluted skies I was just begging the DSO gods for a glimpse of M 51 when I realized I had been staring at it or several minutes. An accidental bump of he scope made it move so that I could see it. Wasn't long before I learned to use the setting circles and then bought some encoders and a celesta on advanced astromaster.

That is my story.


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GlennLeDrew
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5861049 - 05/14/13 10:00 PM

Our own Milky Way, before I had any optical system. Then M31, with my first scope--a 40mm terrestrial refractor--at age 13.

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Terry Fowler
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5861052 - 05/14/13 10:02 PM

So far the only galaxy I've observed is the Milky Way. As soon as my monopod arrives I'll fix that.

Terry


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kfiscus
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Terry Fowler]
      #5861310 - 05/15/13 12:54 AM

M-81 and 82 in my new Astroscan and 28 RKE in 1981. Life was goooood!

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David Knisely
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5861370 - 05/15/13 02:03 AM

The very first galaxy I ever saw (other than the Milky Way) was M31. After my parents had gotten me a rather crude Sears 3 inch reflector in 1967, I had worked and worked to find it, finally locating it one fall night high above our TV antenna on our house. It was better in binoculars, as I had not yet learned how to use low power effectively. After that, the next one was, of course, M32 sitting next to it. It took quite a while (and a new 2.4 inch refractor for Christmas in 1968), but eventually I managed to find M81 and M82, followed by M64 and later on in 1969 by M33 (first seen in binoculars again). I probably picked up around 11 galaxies in that little 2.4 inch refractor before I went on to bigger things. Once I built my 8 inch f/7 Newtonian in 1972, the galaxies began piling up like cord wood. Clear skies to you.

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Astrojensen
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: David Knisely]
      #5861460 - 05/15/13 03:53 AM

The very first galaxy I observed, other than the Milky Way, was M31, just like so many others here. My childhood skies were dark and clear, so I didn't need any optical gear to spot it. It was clear as day in my father's 10x50 binoculars, but it took some years before I was able to spot M32, and NGC 205 was even more difficult. The next galaxy I spotted after M31 was M33. I knew M81 was supposed to be big and bright, but it took me years to find. I don't think I saw it before I got my first 60mm and it took ages to find, as I didn't have any good maps.


Clear skies!
Thomas, Denmark


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Rich (RLTYS)
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5861517 - 05/15/13 06:00 AM

My first galaxy was M31 with my Tasco 50mm refr in 1968. I still have the notes and sketch of this event.

Rich (RLTYS)


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azure1961p
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5861619 - 05/15/13 08:20 AM

Besides our galaxy, M31. Next was M51.

M51 amazed me as I had a time-life book at home with this huge spread of the galaxy stating the unfathomable distance of 10 million light years. Come to find out it was much farther away than that.

The satisfaction of locating 51 and its companion was greater than that of M31. It was more obscure and so the reward was greater - seeing its companion was a major plus.

Pete

Edited by azure1961p (05/15/13 08:20 AM)


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Achernar
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5862142 - 05/15/13 01:01 PM

The first galaxy I ever observed was the Andromeda Galaxy through my 6-inch telescope. That was an occasion to remember because I was in high school at the time.

Taras


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Dave MitskyModerator
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Achernar]
      #5862183 - 05/15/13 01:15 PM

The Milky Way was also my first galaxy. I really can't recall what the first telescopic one was.

Dave Mitsky


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Silver Bear
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Loc: Brazos Valley in Texas
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Dave Mitsky]
      #5863149 - 05/15/13 08:29 PM

M-31 last winter, on a hunting trip. Cold, but crystal clear and dark skies. Saw it naked eye, then through my binoculars. Pointed it out to my brother-in-law, then told him to look at it through his hunting binoculars. He could only say "Wow!" for several seconds.

Andromeda was beautiful.


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Man in a Tub
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Silver Bear]
      #5863399 - 05/15/13 10:47 PM

M31

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Astrodj
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Man in a Tub]
      #5863578 - 05/16/13 12:23 AM

M31 also.

When I first got interested at age 10 I didn't have a scope yet, or binoculars, so I would lie on a blanket in our back yard and marvel at what must have been magnitude 6 or 6.5 skies. I didn't know much of anything about what I was seeing at age 10 and didn't know anyone else who did.

I could see what I later learned was M31 very easily straight overhead, but at the time I thought it must have been the LMC I had seen pictured in my Life Nature Library series book The Universe, my one resource.

Oops.


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galaxyman
Vendor - Have a Stellar Birthday
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5863628 - 05/16/13 12:58 AM

I'm thinking the question means beyond the Milky Way of course. For me that would have been M-31 also, and it was in 1969 with a 60mm refractor.

Karl
E.O.H.


Chesmont Astronomical Society - www.chesmontastro.org
Galaxy Log - http://www.youtube.com/user/GalaxyLog4565?feature=mhee
Galaxy Log Blog - http://galaxylog.blogspot.com/
HASB - http://www.haveastellarbirthday.com
Telekit (Swayze optics) 22" F/4.5 Dob
Homemade (Parks Optics) 12.5" F/4.8 Dob
TMB/APM 8" f/9 RefractorĒThe BeastĒ. One great DEEP SKY achro
ES 6" f/6.5 achro. Good one
Celestron Omni XLT 102 refractor.
Celestron 10x60mm Binos


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David Knisely
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5863667 - 05/16/13 01:50 AM

Quote:

M31 also.

When I first got interested at age 10 I didn't have a scope yet, or binoculars, so I would lie on a blanket in our back yard and marvel at what must have been magnitude 6 or 6.5 skies. I didn't know much of anything about what I was seeing at age 10 and didn't know anyone else who did.

I could see what I later learned was M31 very easily straight overhead, but at the time I thought it must have been the LMC I had seen pictured in my Life Nature Library series book The Universe, my one resource.

Oops.




Don't feel too bad about that. When I was 11 and playing with my older brother's 7-12x35 binoculars (he was a bird watcher), I had pointed them south one summer night when I saw a nice big oval fuzzy patch with stars around it. I instantly thought I had seen the Andromeda Galaxy, and it wasn't until a few years later that I learned it was actually the Lagoon Nebula. Still, I had actually *found* something in the sky, which was an accomplishment in and of itself. That pair of binoculars got me into astronomy in a big way. Clear skies to you.


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leviathan
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: David Knisely]
      #5863770 - 05/16/13 05:40 AM

Looks like for me it was the pair of M51.

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Tony Flanders
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5863779 - 05/16/13 06:04 AM

M31 was the first galaxy besides the Milky Way that I learned to recognize naked-eye and also the first that I observed through binoculars. That was during my first push into astronomy, using the Peterson Field Guide and 7x35 binoculars back in 1977, when I was 23. I may also have viewed other galaxies through binoculars at that time -- not sure.

The first galaxies I observed through a telescope were M81 and M82, through my 70-mm refractor in February 1997, from my local city park. That was the beginning of my second push, which culminated with my final Messier object (M79) in September 1997.

I'm intrigued how many people's second galaxy was M51, considering that it's not among the brightest.


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Feidb
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Tony Flanders]
      #5864018 - 05/16/13 09:34 AM

The Milky Way, of course, and then M-31 through my mentor Karl's 12-inch reflector in 1967. It was also the first galaxy I observed through my 8-inch f/9.44 reflector when I finished the mirror in late 1968.

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operascope
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Feidb]
      #5864057 - 05/16/13 09:48 AM

The first galaxy I remember observing was M51. It was in very dark skies with my home made 8" f/5.6, and the spiral structure was easy to see. Even with my 12" I've had few observations of this galaxy that were as clear, and none as memorable.

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star drop
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: operascope]
      #5864066 - 05/16/13 09:56 AM

After the Milky Way my first external galaxy was M31.

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kfiscus
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: star drop]
      #5864135 - 05/16/13 10:38 AM

I'm surprised no one from the southern hemisphere has replied about the Magellanic Clouds.

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RAKing
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5864221 - 05/16/13 11:15 AM

Like a lot of folks here, M31 was my first galaxy after looking at the Milky Way.

I grew up in Oklahoma and the Milky Way was a brilliant white river running through the sky. M31 was a naked eye 'blob' and my Dad gave me his binoculars so I could see it better. I later got a Sears refractor and carried it around for many years.

My Dad would take me outside and point out the various stars and other cool objects, starting when I was about 10 or 11. That was 56 years ago and I have been hooked ever since.

Cheers,

Ron


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DJCalma
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: star drop]
      #5864384 - 05/16/13 12:20 PM

Observation log from Friday April 8, 1983:

60 mm. F/11.7 Meade refractor
Found my first galaxies. M81/82 in Ursa Major!
Brighter than I thought, both in the same field of view. M81 is brighter and slightly oval while M82 looks edge on.


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azure1961p
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: David Knisely]
      #5864712 - 05/16/13 02:19 PM

Reminds me of the time as a kid I thought in seeing the Pleidies I had located the Little Dipper!

Pete


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SusanY
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5864925 - 05/16/13 03:57 PM

Before I ever had a telescope - the two Magellanic Clouds. The first galaxy through a telescope - NGC 5128.

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Astrodj
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Tony Flanders]
      #5865380 - 05/16/13 06:01 PM

"I'm intrigued how many people's second galaxy was M51, considering that it's not among the brightest."

Me too. I looked for M51 for five years with a 3" reflector with no success. No idea what I was doing. The images I had seen made me think it would be easier than it was. I finally saw it when I got the Cave 10" when I was 16.

M82 was my second galaxy BTW.



"Reminds me of the time as a kid I thought in seeing the Pleidies I had located the Little Dipper!"

I made that mistake also.


"Don't feel too bad about that. When I was 11 and playing with my older brother's 7-12x35 binoculars (he was a bird watcher), I had pointed them south one summer night when I saw a nice big oval fuzzy patch with stars around it. I instantly thought I had seen the Andromeda Galaxy, and it wasn't until a few years later that I learned it was actually the Lagoon Nebula. Still, I had actually *found* something in the sky, which was an accomplishment in and of itself. That pair of binoculars got me into astronomy in a big way. Clear skies to you."

Looking back on those days makes me laugh. I don't take myself to seriously. M8 was another easy naked eye object I wondered about back then. When I finally got my Edmund 3" Newtonian I saw what you described, but had no idea what it was. I felt like I was discovering something, which for me of course I was.

I looked for the Cone Nebula and the Horsehead when I first started out too. I didn't know how tough those were at the time either. The pictures in my book looked pretty bright. I really wanted to see those two!


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N. Ham
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5865925 - 05/16/13 09:33 PM

I remember being frustrated at not being able to find the horsehead with my 3" reflector way back then. In looking back, I am somewhat ashamed as interested as I was in 1971 in astronomy, that I let high school, girls, college, med school and post doctoral training get in the way of astronomy for so long. I didn't even know what a Messier object was until about 1996! I know that comet Hyutake(sp?) was what got me going again. I think I blundered into an issue of Astronomy or S&T at the local Barnes and Noble, and that was how it got started again for me. I am still not where I want to be in observing and describing what I see to share with others. I really appreciate this message board and those that contribute to it.

Keep it coming.


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FJA
Sketcher Extraordinaire
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Loc: 50.65¬į N, 1.15¬į W
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5866723 - 05/17/13 09:46 AM

M31 for me also. I was interested in astronomy as a kid but, like most people, let it drop until I was an adult. I was 22 when I got back into it in 1992 and in September that year, I loaned a 6" dob from our local society which I'd joined in that summer. M31 was probably the first deep sky object I looked at with that scope.

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jcco
newbie


Reged: 02/24/11

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: FJA]
      #5868073 - 05/17/13 08:17 PM

Hello,

I got my first scope in spring 2007 (10" Dob) and the very first object I observed through it was NGC 2392 (The Eskimo Nebula) and the second one was M104 which was my first Galaxy ever outside the Milky Way.

On that same night I also observed M81, M82 and M51 but M104 was the first one.

Bye,

JC


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kfiscus
Carpal Tunnel
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: jcco]
      #5868159 - 05/17/13 09:18 PM

Very impressive list of first memories!

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Astrodj
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Loc: Missouri
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: jcco]
      #5868485 - 05/17/13 11:51 PM

Welcome to CN, JC.

1st light the Eskimo, first galaxy M104? That is an unusual first two objects indeed! Wow. I think you are the first one to have M104 as a first galaxy in this thread.


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Richard McC
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: kfiscus]
      #5869260 - 05/18/13 12:38 PM

Quote:

I'm surprised no one from the southern hemisphere has replied about the Magellanic Clouds.




I'll do so now - LMC and SMC naked eye. Away from city lights both are obvious targets. I cannot remember what number three was.


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MikeBOKC
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5869382 - 05/18/13 01:52 PM

M104 was my first galaxy too. Got my Meade 826 Starfinder in the early 80s and set it up in the yard . . . my first scope since the traditional 60mm refractor when I was a kid. I just started scanning the skies and -- bingo! -- ran across a galaxy! Checking charts I saw that is was 104, and I have to say it remains my favorite to this day, having seen it now in a dozen or more scopes.

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MikeBOKC
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5869383 - 05/18/13 01:52 PM

M104 was my first galaxy too. Got my Meade 826 Starfinder in the early 80s and set it up in the yard . . . my first scope since the traditional 60mm refractor when I was a kid. I just started scanning the skies and -- bingo! -- ran across a galaxy! Checking charts I saw that is was 104, and I have to say it remains my favorite to this day, having seen it now in a dozen or more scopes.

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timb
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Reged: 12/18/12

Loc: buffalo ny
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: MikeBOKC]
      #5869521 - 05/18/13 03:01 PM

My first was M81 just about a month ago. Lot easier finding them after the first one.

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Astrodj
professor emeritus
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Loc: Missouri
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: MikeBOKC]
      #5870563 - 05/19/13 12:19 AM

M104 is one of my favorites as well. The first time I observed it in my 10" at age 16 I was amazed at how well defined it was. I had darker skies then.

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Niels2011
super member


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Loc: UK
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5870737 - 05/19/13 04:01 AM

M31 then M33, which I spent a good half hour hunting on that first light evening in 2010 from my mag 5 backyard. I kept looking because it was supposed to be easy I thought - it was a very good early lesson in finding faint fuzzy things, as I finally saw the subtle lightening of the background sky which was M33.

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aatt
sage


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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Niels2011]
      #5871632 - 05/19/13 02:38 PM

Definitely M31 then M33. After that it was the big elliptical Messier (forgot the number) in Virgo.

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azure1961p
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: aatt]
      #5872741 - 05/19/13 10:46 PM

M87?

Pete


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tjspelich
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: star drop]
      #5873104 - 05/20/13 05:22 AM

M31 through a pair of Swift Audubon 8.5x42 binoculars.
Tim


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BSJ
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: tjspelich]
      #5877535 - 05/22/13 08:37 AM

My first concerted effort to find a Galaxy was M31, about 5 years ago. Used my 78mm 25x spotting scope on a light weight camera tripod. Saw an elongated fuzzy smudge.

Decided I needed to get a real telescope after that so I could see it better.

Little did I know that even after getting increasingly larger scopes that itís still an elongated fuzzy patch!

None the less, itís been a fun trip. But now Iíve got a 10Ē Dob thatís optically as good as can be thatíll likely end up being the biggest Iíll ever own. But I've still got a lifetimes supply of targets to find!


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Kraus
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: BSJ]
      #5878087 - 05/22/13 01:45 PM

I do remember watching the Andromeda galaxy form.

So I guess Messier 31.


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rdandrea
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5878564 - 05/22/13 05:02 PM

I think mine were M81 and M82.

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Bill Boublitz
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: rdandrea]
      #5878752 - 05/22/13 06:05 PM

Not counting the Milky Way, M31 through binoculars and naked eye.

Telescopically, (here's where it gets good); the second galaxy was... NGC 3521 in Leo! Right... I was a proud novice with my first instrument and had been poking around the belly of Leo looking for who knows what, when I accidentally bumped the scope and it serendipitously centered 3521 in the FOV. True. I had to go inside and look it up on the charts. I still observe it every year just for the laugh and smiles.


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ensign
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 12/16/08

Loc: Southwestern Ontario
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Bill Boublitz]
      #5879035 - 05/22/13 08:40 PM

NGC891 naked eye from urban light pollution.

OK, like nearly everyone else, M31 with a 4" achromat from my suburban back yard. It was a pretty exciting find!


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JIMZ7
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: ensign]
      #5880283 - 05/23/13 01:45 PM

I would say it was M-31/M-32 with a 6" f/4 homemade reflector. This scope was purchased back in the mid 1960's at Polaris Telescope Shop in Dearborn Michigan. I lived in Detroit then & the skies were much darker than the suburban skies now.

Jim


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Tyranthrax
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: JIMZ7]
      #5880490 - 05/23/13 03:17 PM

M104 Sombrero. . .I don't know why it was the first one I saw when I tried scrolling through the list of DSO's on the controller and I like nachos. been hooked ever since

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Bill Boublitz
super member


Reged: 05/04/13

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: ensign]
      #5888517 - 05/28/13 08:56 AM

Hey, Mike... How many satellite Globular Clusters were you able to count on NGC 891 that night?

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bremms
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5895590 - 06/01/13 07:42 AM

Quote:

I remember being frustrated at not being able to find the horsehead with my 3" reflector way back then. In looking back, I am somewhat ashamed as interested as I was in 1971 in astronomy, that I let high school, girls, college, med school and post doctoral training get in the way of astronomy for so long. I didn't even know what a Messier object was until about 1996! I know that comet Hyutake(sp?) was what got me going again. I think I blundered into an issue of Astronomy or S&T at the local Barnes and Noble, and that was how it got started again for me. I am still not where I want to be in observing and describing what I see to share with others. I really appreciate this message board and those that contribute to it.

Keep it coming.




I too had a couple long periods of waning from the hobby. To busy getting drunk an chasing girls as an undergrad. Later, working at STScI I was racing bicycles and motorbikes, chasing girls again.. Back into it now for a good while.

first other than Milky Way.. M31 then M33 with a 60mm sears and binocs.
M31 was easy naked eye when I was growing up.


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StrangeDejavu
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: bremms]
      #5896614 - 06/01/13 07:11 PM

My first galaxy was M81 three nights ago, actually. I didn't plan on being out long, so I had my refractor out. Even with it, I could see the glowing core from my red/white zone. No luck on M82, however.

I keep a log of all my firsts, and this is what I wrote that night:

5/29/13 - FIRST: M81 (Bode's Galaxy) in the Northern sky through Omni XLT 102. Very faint, like a finger print. Glowing core evident.



Edited by StrangeDejavu (06/01/13 07:16 PM)


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Aperturefever
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: StrangeDejavu]
      #5899161 - 06/03/13 08:33 AM

After the Milky Way and Magellanic Clouds, it was Centaurus A as a teenager back in the late 1980s through a 6-inch F5. I was enthralled and, even back then, seemed to understand the scale at which I was looking. It just glowed dimly like an exploded hamburger!

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philrod
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Aperturefever]
      #5900293 - 06/03/13 06:15 PM

M31 with an Astroscan. I was at Pine Mtn,Oregon, probably summer of 1998. A teenager was using a laser pointer to impress his girlfriend and he showed me where it was. Next thing I knew I had about a dozen people lined up behind me for a look. phil

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Sophid
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Loc: Wichita, Kansas
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: philrod]
      #5904883 - 06/05/13 10:32 PM

My first aside from the Milky Way was M82... I was so excited, I didn't even notice that M81 was just a nudge of the scope from being in the field of view until later that month.

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Starman1
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5919360 - 06/13/13 07:10 PM

Quote:

I have to start at he beginning. Studied astronomy first at age nine. Got a 3 inch reflector from Kmart when I was 10. Technically it was a Newtonian, but that is a smear on the man's name! I did observe Saturn with it which planted a seed in me that germinated with the first bright comet in the mid nineties. Bought a cheap 465 power refractor which was a disaster. Rescued myself with a CG-11. Quite a leap, but I did survive the learning curve. That thing was hard to point for a late 30s beginner with its focal length around over 2200 mm. Frustration ruled my first few outings until one night star hopping in fairly light polluted skies I was just begging the DSO gods for a glimpse of M 51 when I realized I had been staring at it or several minutes. An accidental bump of he scope made it move so that I could see it. Wasn't long before I learned to use the setting circles and then bought some encoders and a celesta on advanced astromaster.

That is my story.



In the summer of 1963, I spotted just about every Messier object in my 4.25" newtonian. I am pretty sure that M31 or M33 was my first galaxy, but it was so long ago......


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FeynmanFan
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Starman1]
      #5919516 - 06/13/13 08:44 PM

M31 in 1958 with a 3" f/10 newt. Dad was stationed at a TAC base about 25-30 miles from downtown Tokyo. The LP was nothing like now, but it was bad enough that M31 wasn't that easy naked eye. Compounding that was direct light from porch lights, and perimeter fence lights. However, the Air Force had thoughtfully provided me with a refuge from those lights in the form of a slit trench leftover from the Korean War. Located about 50' from our quonset, by dragging my rig down there, I was able to escape the lights, although I did lose the horizon.

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Fuzzyguy
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Reged: 12/21/11

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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: FeynmanFan]
      #5919557 - 06/13/13 09:07 PM

M 31 in 1964 with naked eye and then with my Dad's 3.5" Newtonian. I was was 9 and I was hooked!

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Scanning4Comets
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Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Fuzzyguy]
      #5921145 - 06/14/13 07:47 PM

Mine was M-31 with an old pair of 7x50 binoculars. It took me about a month to find it because I was using the map in the center of the Astronomy magazine and I was holding the map wrong not realizing the sky is like a big "DOME". I was 20 years old at the time.

This is what started me into astronomy after I listened to Cygnus X-1 by Rush.

Cheers,


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Usquebae
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Scanning4Comets]
      #5929032 - 06/19/13 11:20 AM

I just started learning about the sky this April. When my Z8 arrived April 30, I promptly began pointing it at the brightest things in the sky. (After the sun had set - I knew that much, anyway). First sight was probably Arcturus, not so interesting. Second turned out to be Saturn, 2 days after opposition, rings wide open. And so, a sky junky was born...

My first glimpse of a galaxy - in fact, my first DSO - came the following night when I took aim at the lion's hind thigh and found the Leo Triplet. Wow. Not as shapely as many other objects I've found since, but getting three whole galaxies in the frame at once really captured my imagination.


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Jeff Lee
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/17/06

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Usquebae]
      #5934599 - 06/22/13 01:06 PM

1996 C90 M31 and 2 companions.

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DJastronomer
member


Reged: 05/20/13

Loc: Sweden
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Jeff Lee]
      #5938168 - 06/24/13 02:45 PM

M31 in 12x50 in 2006

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AstroTatDad
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Reged: 04/22/13

Loc: Los Angeles - San Diego
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: DJastronomer]
      #5938475 - 06/24/13 06:11 PM

I'm pretty sure it was 1978 I was 8, it was our galaxy the milkyway.

through a scope it was M31 and that was in 1999.


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Charles Funk
member


Reged: 09/06/05

Loc: W. Tennessee
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: star drop]
      #5941401 - 06/26/13 12:58 PM

I got started doing binocular astronomy. Other than the obvious choice of our Milky Way, the 1st observed galaxy was Andromeda.

Looks like a popular choice.


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Rotary
member


Reged: 06/09/13

Loc: Poland, Krosno
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Charles Funk]
      #5941426 - 06/26/13 01:16 PM

Of course M31.

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Ben Therrell
member


Reged: 10/09/12

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Rotary]
      #5942025 - 06/26/13 07:37 PM

M31 in a binocular. It was on a camping trip in 1957 when I stumbled across it accidentally. It took years for me to verify that it was the Great Andromeda Galaxy but I finally did.

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Messyone
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Ben Therrell]
      #5944508 - 06/28/13 10:07 AM

Apart from our own galaxy and the Magellanic clouds, it was M33 in 1979 using the 9" Oddie refractor at Mt Stromlo.
Matt


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astroment
member


Reged: 06/25/13

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Messyone]
      #5951428 - 07/02/13 02:25 PM

First Galaxy I saw was M31 in 1989 in a Tasco 60mm Refractor
My quest to see M51 didn't happen until 2003 with a Original Orion XT8 this one had the 1.25 focuser


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Bernie Poskus
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: astroment]
      #5969574 - 07/13/13 08:28 PM

Mine was M81. I was very excited to see something that far off. I don't think M31 was up yet.

And, of course, I saw our galaxy even before M81 though I didn't think of it that way.


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nicklane1
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Reged: 03/04/08

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: N. Ham]
      #5969719 - 07/13/13 10:27 PM

the easy one, M31

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jimsmith
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Loc: Herefordshire, UK
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: nicklane1]
      #5970078 - 07/14/13 08:45 AM

It was M31 through an 85mm refractor. It was my first telescope observing session and I recall that I had been looking at M31 for some time before I realised I had found it. (It was a bit fainter and a lot bigger than I had expected.)

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MarcF650R
sage


Reged: 02/25/09

Loc: Mississauga, Ontario
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: jimsmith]
      #6026855 - 08/15/13 10:35 AM

M81 and M82 for me. Meade ETX back in the day...

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wags1
member
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Reged: 05/23/13

Loc: PA, USA
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: MarcF650R]
      #6028705 - 08/16/13 08:33 AM

M51

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Allan...
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Reged: 10/24/12

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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: wags1]
      #6030798 - 08/17/13 11:52 AM

M81 and M82 in the same field of view. THAT was impressive; still a sight to behold at any time for me.

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youngamateur42
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 11/21/12

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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Allan...]
      #6031150 - 08/17/13 02:53 PM

M31 through a TERRIBLE bird-jones type Meade 4.5" reflector, the moon was bright in the area, but I still was (barely) able to find it. Eyes werent nearly as trained back then!

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cpman
member


Reged: 08/10/13

Loc: Austin, Texas, USA
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: youngamateur42]
      #6041055 - 08/23/13 12:15 AM

For naked eye, it was M31 probably around 8 years ago.
For binoculars, it was M33 around 4 years ago.
For a telescope, it was M51 at around 10:15 tonight!!!

I pointed my 10" basically to the right area, then slowly searched the field at 48x. At first, I saw it and thought "What a nice, really, really dim double star!" as it was barely visible with direct vision. I then noticed that the "stars" were not quite stars, and had really faint nebulosity around them. I upped the magnification to 80x, and continued observing. I could just barely see two super faint whisps of nebulosity coming from the brighter "star", one of which was almost connecting it to the other "star".
I'm suprised that I saw the faint spiral structure at all, as I cannot even see the Milky Way here! The light pollution here is so bad, Albireo is on the very edge of naked eye visibility.


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tonyt
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Reged: 09/02/09

Loc: Australia
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: cpman]
      #6046422 - 08/26/13 05:08 AM

Apart from the Magellanic Clouds, Centarus A in binoculars and later in a 10" scope, followed by NGC253.

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Sarkikos
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: AstroTatDad]
      #6046688 - 08/26/13 10:24 AM

The Milky Way, M31, M32, M110. Then M51 and its companion, IIRC.

Mike


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csrlice12
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Sarkikos]
      #6054662 - 08/30/13 03:48 PM

Actually was just a couple of years ago...the Andromeda Galaxy core with an old 13mmT1 Nagler, I then backed off to my widest fov eyepiece at the time...the ES82 24mm....and still couldn't fit it all in. But I still won't forget the view....

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diurnal
member


Reged: 07/24/13

Loc: Alabama
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #6079123 - 09/13/13 05:41 PM

m51 whirlpool galaxy in ursa major.

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paul fields
newbie


Reged: 08/12/13

Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: diurnal]
      #6080923 - 09/14/13 07:02 PM

M31 the andromeda galaxy

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esd726
scholastic sledgehammer
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Reged: 09/30/04

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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: AstroTatDad]
      #6081728 - 09/15/13 09:24 AM

M31

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JackeShan
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Reged: 06/19/10

Loc: Sweden, Dalarna.
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: esd726]
      #6081977 - 09/15/13 12:20 PM

M31 here too, after that M51 and M81 & M82 which blew me away.

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Philler
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Reged: 07/15/13

Loc: Kansas, USA
Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: JackeShan]
      #6086808 - 09/17/13 09:07 PM

M 31 and with, some difficulty, M 33 the same night with 7x 50 binos. That was when I first started observing. This was my first great thrill in this and really got me started.

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Chris Greene
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Re: What was the first galaxy you ever observed? new [Re: Philler]
      #6092842 - 09/21/13 03:27 AM

M31, naked eye about 12-13 years old at Emerald Bay Boy Scout camp on Catalina Island. This would have been '63-'64. None of us knew anything but a couple of my friends saw it too. It wasn't until much later that I learned what we'd seen.

It's still naked eye in these parts on moonless nights.


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