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Finding DSOs with Questar 3.5

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#1 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:07 AM

How do people locate DSOs in a Q 3.5? They are mostly too dim to see in the finder.
Thanks for any suggestions.
Tom

#2 Xeroid

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:22 AM

How about using a Star Chart planetarium app* with both of these tools?

 

Wixey Digital Angle Gauge

 

Sighting Compass

 

You will be able to get approximate AZ and ALT readings of the scope to match those from the star chart  planetarium app*

  

Oh and also use a low power/wide angle eyepiece ?

 

Edit:

* Thanks to JamesMStephens for correcting my "senior moment: one can get DSO ALT & AZ or RA/DEC from planetarium app like SkySafari, Stellarium or Cartes du Ciel" 


Edited by Xeroid, 16 July 2020 - 02:36 PM.


#3 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:30 AM

How about using a Star Chart with both of these tools?
 
Wixey Digital Angle Gauge
 
Sighting Compass
 
You will be able to get approximate AZ and ALT readings of the scope to match those from the star chart
 
Oh and also use a low power/wide angle eyepiece ?


Good ideas! Thanks,
Tom

#4 Giorgos

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:38 AM

a) Using the setting circles with the telescope on a wedge as an equatorial. a) Putting the tube on a goto computerized mount and let the mount find them (if you have the Questar Duplex that can be deforked easily). As already mentioned a low power "finder" eyepiece is usefull.



#5 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 12:21 PM

Xeroid seems to be suggesting using the scope in Alt-Az mode.  Here's a great discussion of that using the Q's setting circles for altitude and azimuth rather than declination and right ascension, no compass or angle guage required (though they may be useful in setting up.)

https://www.cloudyni...-questar-setup/

 

You will need a planetarium app to get altitude and azimuth, they can't be read or even estimated from a start chart.

 

There are a few discussions on the forum about using the setting circles in the intended equatorial mode and skilled observers are able to locate DSOs with them.

https://www.cloudyni...us the latitude.


Edited by JamesMStephens, 16 July 2020 - 12:22 PM.

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#6 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 12:37 PM

I use my scope in equatorial mode, so I will work with the setting circles. I guess finding a bright star near the DSO, adjust RA accordingly and then find the DSO.

Tom
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#7 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 12:51 PM

Tom,

 

I think you're describing the off-set method

"SIMPLE OFF-SET METHOD: This was written about in Sky and Telescope, Sept. 1990, p.246. It enables going from a known star, calculating in advance the correct off-set in R.A. and Dec., and then moving the scope the appropriate amount. It can be quite an effective use of setting circles, though I rarely use it."

 

Quoted from https://calgary.rasc.ca/scircles.htm

 

Jim



#8 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 03:28 PM

Jim,
Yes, that's what I described. I might try setting RA with an app on my phone that calculates local sidereal time.

Tom
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#9 Simoes Pedro

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 03:58 PM

I use a red dot finder. But finding DSO's is a pain.



#10 rcwolpert

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 03:58 PM

I put my Q on a Meade on a LX-85 and find anything within the light grasp of the 3.5”.

 

med_gallery_211497_9431_32754.jpg


Edited by rcwolpert, 16 July 2020 - 05:30 PM.

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#11 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 05:21 PM

RC, Is this your back yard?

 

Jim



#12 rcwolpert

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 05:33 PM

RC, Is this your back yard?

 

Jim

 

Hi Jim,

That's actually in front of my 2nd floor condo, which looks like the condos on the other side of the lake. Everything has to be carried to this location, so it's not so easy setting up.

 

Bob
 


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#13 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 09:31 PM

Having a duplex adds options not available with standard Q. Very good setup.

Tom
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#14 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 09:32 PM

Jim,
Yes, that's what I described. I might try setting RA with an app on my phone that calculates local sidereal time.

Tom

SkySafari will give you LST.


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#15 JamesMStephens

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 09:45 PM

Hi Jim,

That's actually in front of my 2nd floor condo, which looks like the condos on the other side of the lake. Everything has to be carried to this location, so it's not so easy setting up.

 

Bob
 

I was hoping it was your patio!



#16 cbwerner

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 10:12 PM

Hi Jim,

That's actually in front of my 2nd floor condo, which looks like the condos on the other side of the lake. Everything has to be carried to this location, so it's not so easy setting up.

 

Bob
 

Um, don't fall off the edge!!! crazy.gif  grin.gif


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#17 davidmcgo

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:21 PM

Star hopping with the finder and pattern interpretation.   See where the DSO is relative to stars you can see with a good atlas.  With the Q, the Pcket Sky Atlas or Sky Atlas 2000 work well.  Then picture how it will look flipped since the finder view does that., Example,  extend a line through those two stars by 1/2 again as long or mid way between these two or whatever.  Then pattern match from the atlas to the finder view, then flip to the eyepiece.

 

Same technique I use with my 10”, 11”, and other scopes.  You don’t need to see the object in the finder, just stars to let you center where it is relative to those stars based on your atlas.

 

Dave


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#18 Tom3

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 11:36 PM

SkySafari will give you LST.

I have SkySafari on my phone too so there is redundancy of LST.

Tom
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#19 rcwolpert

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Posted 17 July 2020 - 05:58 AM

I was hoping it was your patio!

lol.gif  Me too!


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#20 peashooter1982

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Posted 05 September 2020 - 10:31 PM

Setting circles. Don’t be afraid, it’s not difficult and once learned you’ll be amazed at the DSO’s you’ll find. Some years back the late Ron Ravneburg posted an excellent guide to setting up on the north celestial pole which is key to using this technique, I believe it can be found somewhere on this site. 


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#21 cbwerner

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Posted 06 September 2020 - 06:40 PM

R.I.P. Ron. A true gentleman and great source of information. I can't believe he's been gone 11 years now . . .

 

Here's a link to a post where I dug up the Painless Polar Alignment with a Questar guide that I believe peashooter1982 is referring to.


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#22 drprovi57

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Posted 06 September 2020 - 08:49 PM

PoleMaster works great to get very accurate and fast polar alignment - Setting circles then become very accurate for DSO’s..

 

jason

 

Q3.5 PoleMaster.jpg

 

 



#23 Darkskyaz

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Posted 07 September 2020 - 10:24 PM

I actually enjoy doing the retro setting circle thing once in a while. Usually though I tend to use the Questar on brighter objects. Thanks for the Polemaster tip Jason.  


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