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Saggita and M27

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#1 limeyx

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:19 PM

So I've been practicing locating M27. Not super easy due to light pollution but I believe I have done so successfully twice now.

 

The first time, I used my DIY "GOTO" mount on my Z-130 and found a dim fuzzy patch of grey which matches the description at 25x magnification

However there are a few other Messier objects in the general area so I was not 100% sure

 

Last night I tried many many times to use the "Just find Saggita" technique and for the life of me could not find it (Bortle 6 skies)

I think it's not helping that the orientation of this is rotated quite a bit from most of the online guides

 

What did work last night was to orient the scope on Altair, get the inclination of M27 from my app and basically pan up. What I saw looked very close to what I had seen previously

Frustratingly, going over 26x magnification didn't yield a better view

 

I then spent about 20 mins panning all around M27 at 26x to try to find saggita but absolutely no luck

 

Huge props to the people who discovered these objects back in the 17s !!

 

Are there any tips for locating this ? It did not appear to be visible in the same scope view as M27 at 26x mag

 

 


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#2 ShaulaB

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:30 PM

I always imagined a line from Altair to Deneb, then estimated how far "up/north" from Altair M27 was. And of course, it is not exactly on that line, so take into consideration how many degrees off the line it is.

At low magnification, it will probably not show the bilobed shape that it is known for. And as you already know, light pollution is just not good for viewing deep sky objects.

 

Not sure what kind of finder you have. I viewed M27 with a 10" Dob and a Telrad, no goto or tracking, just star hopping to reach it. If you have an actual finder, knowing how many degrees its field of view is can help tremendously.

 

In the neighborhood of M27 is an object called Brocchi's cluster, or the Coathanger cluster. Sometimes I think it looks like a small airplane coming at you. That cluster will easily fit into your field of view. Try finding it, a lot of fun to look at.

 

My goodness, with a DIY goto system, you have graduated from "Beginner" status! Have fun, and clear skies.


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#3 LDW47

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:35 PM

My problem is kind of the opposite under Bortle 1 skize at my camp, visually I can pick it out very easily but when I put one of my scopes on it even at wide field, low power there are so many stars it gets drowned out in the mass. Sometimes but not often Bortle 1 skiys can be a pain in ........, on the other hand things like the Coathanger stand out very well so on any given nite you really don’t know how your searches will go ? But the Dumbbell is easy to find once you have pointed your scope in the right area.


Edited by LDW47, 15 August 2020 - 02:37 PM.

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#4 limeyx

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:37 PM

I always imagined a line from Altair to Deneb, then estimated how far "up/north" from Altair M27 was. And of course, it is not exactly on that line, so take into consideration how many degrees off the line it is.

At low magnification, it will probably not show the bilobed shape that it is known for. And as you already know, light pollution is just not good for viewing deep sky objects.

 

Not sure what kind of finder you have. I viewed M27 with a 10" Dob and a Telrad, no goto or tracking, just star hopping to reach it. If you have an actual finder, knowing how many degrees its field of view is can help tremendously.

 

In the neighborhood of M27 is an object called Brocchi's cluster, or the Coathanger cluster. Sometimes I think it looks like a small airplane coming at you. That cluster will easily fit into your field of view. Try finding it, a lot of fun to look at.

 

My goodness, with a DIY goto system, you have graduated from "Beginner" status! Have fun, and clear skies.

 

I always imagined a line from Altair to Deneb, then estimated how far "up/north" from Altair M27 was. And of course, it is not exactly on that line, so take into consideration how many degrees off the line it is.

At low magnification, it will probably not show the bilobed shape that it is known for. And as you already know, light pollution is just not good for viewing deep sky objects.

 

Not sure what kind of finder you have. I viewed M27 with a 10" Dob and a Telrad, no goto or tracking, just star hopping to reach it. If you have an actual finder, knowing how many degrees its field of view is can help tremendously.

 

In the neighborhood of M27 is an object called Brocchi's cluster, or the Coathanger cluster. Sometimes I think it looks like a small airplane coming at you. That cluster will easily fit into your field of view. Try finding it, a lot of fun to look at.

 

My goodness, with a DIY goto system, you have graduated from "Beginner" status! Have fun, and clear skies.

 

I always imagined a line from Altair to Deneb, then estimated how far "up/north" from Altair M27 was. And of course, it is not exactly on that line, so take into consideration how many degrees off the line it is.

At low magnification, it will probably not show the bilobed shape that it is known for. And as you already know, light pollution is just not good for viewing deep sky objects.

 

Not sure what kind of finder you have. I viewed M27 with a 10" Dob and a Telrad, no goto or tracking, just star hopping to reach it. If you have an actual finder, knowing how many degrees its field of view is can help tremendously.

 

In the neighborhood of M27 is an object called Brocchi's cluster, or the Coathanger cluster. Sometimes I think it looks like a small airplane coming at you. That cluster will easily fit into your field of view. Try finding it, a lot of fun to look at.

 

My goodness, with a DIY goto system, you have graduated from "Beginner" status! Have fun, and clear skies.

Thanks for your response

 

By "DIY" I just mean a degrees circle printed on tape and wrapper around the base (line up w/Polaris) and at $20 inclinometer so it's really nothing fancy

 

I used my Z-130 (so a 5" primary) with a 25mm eyepiece

 

Honestly I am only around 65% confident I found it because it really is a smudge. I tried the 10x50 Binoculars (which its supposed to be visible with) and zero chance with my skill level on that

 

So much to learn here



#5 vdog

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:39 PM

As planetary nebulae go, M27 is pretty big and pretty bright, but if you're observing from Seattle, it's going to be a challenge even if you're in the 'burbs.

 

I have a personal "hack" for locating it.  The constellation Cygnus contains an asterism called the Northern Cross.  Imagine that these three stars (Sadr, Epsilon Cygni, and Albireo) in that asterism form three corners of an imaginary rectangle.  Use your widest FOV eyepiece and direct your finder to the fourth corner.  It should be in the field.  


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#6 vdog

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:41 PM

Honestly I am only around 65% confident I found it because it really is a smudge. I tried the 10x50 Binoculars (which its supposed to be visible with) and zero chance with my skill level on that

That was probably it.  It does look like a smudge, albeit a dumbbell-shaped one.

 

It sounds like you're handicapped by a lot of light pollution.  If that's the case, you probably won't see it in your 10x50s.


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#7 river-z

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:43 PM

I’ve had this problem sometimes too, when I’m learning a new constellation and I’ve found that the best solution (for me) is to spend quite a bit of time looking with binoculars. Once I have a good feel for the layout of the constellation and relation to stars like Altair that serve as points of reference then I’m ready to star hop more effectively.

#8 limeyx

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:44 PM

As planetary nebulae go, M27 is pretty big and pretty bright, but if you're observing from Seattle, it's going to be a challenge even if you're in the 'burbs.

 

I have a personal "hack" for locating it.  The constellation Cygnus contains an asterism called the Northern Cross.  Imagine that these three stars (Sadr, Epsilon Cygni, and Albireo) in that asterism form three corners of an imaginary rectangle.  Use your widest FOV eyepiece and direct your finder to the fourth corner.  It should be in the field.  

Thanks, will try this ! Man, if that's in the frame then Sagitta ought to be too. I am in the suburbs but its like the sky never gets dark here right now

 

Maybe it will be better in winter but its really hard to see even the more prominent stars / constellations sometimes


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#9 MikeTelescope

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:48 PM

Find Altair and Vega, two of the three stars of the summer triangle.  Imagine a line connecting Altair and Vega.  Start at Altair and go about one quarter of the way up this line.  The back of Sagitta the Arrow (the feather) is two stars almost at that quarter-way point.  Then slide away from that quarter-way point, and look for the Sagitta pattern of 2-2-1-1 stars.  When you reach that last star in the arrow, turn right (toward Vega) and look for the letter "M."  The top two points of the M consist of two stars each.  Once you find the M, M27 is just below the bottom star in the middle of the M.  

 

I'm sure the Sages have better ways, but this works for me.  Practicing it first in binoculars helps.  


Edited by MikeTelescope, 15 August 2020 - 02:50 PM.

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#10 MikeTahtib

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 02:55 PM

I was just looking at this last night with a pair of 15X70 binoculars in my Bortle 6 zone, so smaller aperture and magnification than you, but I have to say that there wasn't really a whole  lot to see, other than being able to say I saw it.  Very small and pale.  If I had never seen it in a telescope before, I would not have known I was seeing it.  With your 6", you should get a significantly better view, but maybe a bit more magnification might help

It is challenging to find.  I always used to use the same method as VDog, looking in the missing corner of the box formed by Cygnus's left wing elbow, head, and center.  It's a little outboard of that.  It was often a struggle to find.  The last time was extreme;y frustrating, even with a 15" Dob and wide-angle eyepieces.  Then I settled on the method of finding Sagitta, and imagining the end bright star as the center of a clock, and the next star in closer to the triangle end to be the end of a hand.  Rotate the imaginary hand 90 degrees counterclockwise, and you're awfully close.  Of course, if you can't see Sagitta, that won't work.



#11 Tony Flanders

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 04:38 PM

So I've been practicing locating M27. Not super easy due to light pollution but I believe I have done so successfully twice now.
 
The first time, I used my DIY "GOTO" mount on my Z-130 and found a dim fuzzy patch of grey which matches the description at 25x magnification.
However there are a few other Messier objects in the general area so I was not 100% sure


From your description I would be pretty confident that was M27. The only other Messier object for miles around is M71, and I find it hard to imagine confusing them. Among other things, M71 is considerably less prominent. The open cluster NGC 6940 might appear like a fuzzy patch at low power, but it's almost ten degrees away.

From the point of view of an experienced observer, M27 is super-bright. It arguably punches through light pollution better than any other nebula in the northern sky besides M42. Should be obvious through a 130-mm scope in all but the worst skies, and Seattle's skies are usually pretty good at this time of year.

To put that in context, what a typical newbie might describe as "a dim fuzzy patch of gray", an experienced observer would likely call "overwhelmingly bright." As you will find for yourself after observing stuff fainter than M27, which I'm sure you will do.

 

Last night I tried many many times to use the "Just find Saggita" technique and for the life of me could not find it (Bortle 6 skies) I think it's not helping that the orientation of this is rotated quite a bit from most of the online guides
 
...
 

I then spent about 20 mins panning all around M27 at 26x to try to find saggita but absolutely no luck


Sagitta is a constellation; much too big to see through a telescope. The four or five signature stars barely even fit in the field of view of most binoculars. However, Sagitta does include two pretty distinctive close pairs of bright stars -- the Alpha-Beta pair and the Delta-Zeta pair. Each pair fits handily in a 2-degree field of view. Once you have located them, you should be able to pinpoint M71's location off of Delta and Zeta.
 

Are there any tips for locating this ? It did not appear to be visible in the same scope view as M27 at 26x mag


I recommend spending some time learning the constellations. It's a bit tricky to decipher this part of the sky right now because it's almost directly overhead, where notions of "up," "down," "left," and "right" don't apply.

Personally, I find a planisphere or all-sky map better for learning the constellations than any app is. But an app will do in a pinch. Zoom out to the area around Cygnus, then lie down on your back and orient the map so that Cygnus matches what you see. That should tell you precisely where to look for Sagitta.

 

At least two of Sagitta's stars should be readily visible to the unaided eye in Bortle-6 skies, and with a little effort you should be able to see all four of the stars that give this constellation (The Arrow) its name.

 

Vulpecula, alas, is hard to identify even under pristine skies, and likely impossible to identify with your unaided eyes in suburban skies. That's why it's easier to locate M27 off Sagitta than off Vulpecula.

 

Oh, while you're in the area, take a look for the Coathanger, Collinder 399. It just fits in your scope's field of view at 26X, and a fine sight it is.


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#12 limeyx

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 05:00 PM

From your description I would be pretty confident that was M27. The only other Messier object for miles around is M71, and I find it hard to imagine confusing them. Among other things, M71 is considerably less prominent. The open cluster NGC 6940 might appear like a fuzzy patch at low power, but it's almost ten degrees away.

From the point of view of an experienced observer, M27 is super-bright. It arguably punches through light pollution better than any other nebula in the northern sky besides M42. Should be obvious through a 130-mm scope in all but the worst skies, and Seattle's skies are usually pretty good at this time of year.

To put that in context, what a typical newbie might describe as "a dim fuzzy patch of gray", an experienced observer would likely call "overwhelmingly bright." As you will find for yourself after observing stuff fainter than M27, which I'm sure you will do.

 


Sagitta is a constellation; much too big to see through a telescope. The four or five signature stars barely even fit in the field of view of most binoculars. However, Sagitta does include two pretty distinctive close pairs of bright stars -- the Alpha-Beta pair and the Delta-Zeta pair. Each pair fits handily in a 2-degree field of view. Once you have located them, you should be able to pinpoint M71's location off of Delta and Zeta.
 


I recommend spending some time learning the constellations. It's a bit tricky to decipher this part of the sky right now because it's almost directly overhead, where notions of "up," "down," "left," and "right" don't apply.

Personally, I find a planisphere or all-sky map better for learning the constellations than any app is. But an app will do in a pinch. Zoom out to the area around Cygnus, then lie down on your back and orient the map so that Cygnus matches what you see. That should tell you precisely where to look for Sagitta.

 

At least two of Sagitta's stars should be readily visible to the unaided eye in Bortle-6 skies, and with a little effort you should be able to see all four of the stars that give this constellation (The Arrow) its name.

 

Vulpecula, alas, is hard to identify even under pristine skies, and likely impossible to identify with your unaided eyes in suburban skies. That's why it's easier to locate M27 off Sagitta than off Vulpecula.

 

Oh, while you're in the area, take a look for the Coathanger, Collinder 399. It just fits in your scope's field of view at 26X, and a fine sight it is.

 

From your description I would be pretty confident that was M27. The only other Messier object for miles around is M71, and I find it hard to imagine confusing them. Among other things, M71 is considerably less prominent. The open cluster NGC 6940 might appear like a fuzzy patch at low power, but it's almost ten degrees away.

From the point of view of an experienced observer, M27 is super-bright. It arguably punches through light pollution better than any other nebula in the northern sky besides M42. Should be obvious through a 130-mm scope in all but the worst skies, and Seattle's skies are usually pretty good at this time of year.

To put that in context, what a typical newbie might describe as "a dim fuzzy patch of gray", an experienced observer would likely call "overwhelmingly bright." As you will find for yourself after observing stuff fainter than M27, which I'm sure you will do.

 


Sagitta is a constellation; much too big to see through a telescope. The four or five signature stars barely even fit in the field of view of most binoculars. However, Sagitta does include two pretty distinctive close pairs of bright stars -- the Alpha-Beta pair and the Delta-Zeta pair. Each pair fits handily in a 2-degree field of view. Once you have located them, you should be able to pinpoint M71's location off of Delta and Zeta.
 


I recommend spending some time learning the constellations. It's a bit tricky to decipher this part of the sky right now because it's almost directly overhead, where notions of "up," "down," "left," and "right" don't apply.

Personally, I find a planisphere or all-sky map better for learning the constellations than any app is. But an app will do in a pinch. Zoom out to the area around Cygnus, then lie down on your back and orient the map so that Cygnus matches what you see. That should tell you precisely where to look for Sagitta.

 

At least two of Sagitta's stars should be readily visible to the unaided eye in Bortle-6 skies, and with a little effort you should be able to see all four of the stars that give this constellation (The Arrow) its name.

 

Vulpecula, alas, is hard to identify even under pristine skies, and likely impossible to identify with your unaided eyes in suburban skies. That's why it's easier to locate M27 off Sagitta than off Vulpecula.

 

Oh, while you're in the area, take a look for the Coathanger, Collinder 399. It just fits in your scope's field of view at 26X, and a fine sight it is.

Yeah looking at some more star maps, I think it has to be M27 because I recognize the pattern of 4 stars close by  (see attached)

If M71 is fainter than this then it may as well be invisible !

 

I will definitely check out your other suggestion as these objects as you say are high in the sky right now

 

Thanks !!!



#13 Tony Flanders

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 05:25 PM

Yeah looking at some more star maps, I think it has to be M27 because I recognize the pattern of 4 stars close by  (see attached)
If M71 is fainter than this then it may as well be invisible !


Not a bit of it! You found M27 "blind" -- as it were. Just scanned around and stumbled upon it. That means that it's way, way above the threshold of visibility. M71 is fainter than M27, but not all that much fainter. You can definitely see it once you know where to look.

It's called star-hopping. You start at a know star, orient your map to match what you see in the eyepiece, and then work your way over to your target, field by field, identifying the star patterns along the way. That way you don't have to start looking for your target until you know it's in the center of the field of view, based on the surrounding star field.


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#14 bbmagic

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 07:04 PM

There is a pleasant trapezoid asterism right next to it. That's how I know I am in the right spot


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#15 Dave Mitsky

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 01:19 AM

Gamma Sagittae has a distinct ruddy color and is located about three degrees south of M27 so if you start at M27, which is below the center of an M-shaped asterism in Vulpecula, just pan three degrees south.  From Gamma head westward.  You should see the globular cluster M71 about midway between Gamma and Delta Sagittae in the middle pair of stars in the constellation.  Collinder 399 lies just to the northwest of the second pair of stars.

https://en.wikipedia...llation_map.svg
 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-71

 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-27

 

I've attached a screen capture from Stellarium.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Sagitta Stellarium.jpg

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#16 SteveG

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 01:27 PM

I’m out in Woodinville, but still in a light polluted neighborhood. Last week I was viewing with my 10” reflector, looking mostly near Zenith due to all of the trees. I found M27 very easily, but M71 was barely detectable. I can’t get dark adapted, and my eye-site is no where near as good as it used to be. I’m not sure if I would have seen it at all in a 6” scope. 30 years ago our Seattle skies were much darker, and a 6” scope would show a lot more than today.


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#17 limeyx

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:06 PM

Not a bit of it! You found M27 "blind" -- as it were. Just scanned around and stumbled upon it. That means that it's way, way above the threshold of visibility. M71 is fainter than M27, but not all that much fainter. You can definitely see it once you know where to look.

It's called star-hopping. You start at a know star, orient your map to match what you see in the eyepiece, and then work your way over to your target, field by field, identifying the star patterns along the way. That way you don't have to start looking for your target until you know it's in the center of the field of view, based on the surrounding star field.

Yeah - I am trying to practice star hopping. Obviously the tricky part is when either the next star or group of stars is out of the eyepiece view from the previous one, but I will get better !



#18 limeyx

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:07 PM

There is a pleasant trapezoid asterism right next to it. That's how I know I am in the right spot

Yup ! I think that's what I was seeing



#19 limeyx

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:07 PM

Gamma Sagittae has a distinct ruddy color and is located about three degrees south of M27 so if you start at M27, which is below the center of an M-shaped asterism in Vulpecula, just pan three degrees south.  From Gamma head westward.  You should see the globular cluster M71 about midway between Gamma and Delta Sagittae in the middle pair of stars in the constellation.  Collinder 399 lies just to the northwest of the second pair of stars.

https://en.wikipedia...llation_map.svg
 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-71

 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-27

 

I've attached a screen capture from Stellarium.

 

Gamma Sagittae has a distinct ruddy color and is located about three degrees south of M27 so if you start at M27, which is below the center of an M-shaped asterism in Vulpecula, just pan three degrees south.  From Gamma head westward.  You should see the globular cluster M71 about midway between Gamma and Delta Sagittae in the middle pair of stars in the constellation.  Collinder 399 lies just to the northwest of the second pair of stars.

https://en.wikipedia...llation_map.svg
 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-71

 

https://freestarcharts.com/messier-27

 

I've attached a screen capture from Stellarium.

Thank you !



#20 limeyx

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:09 PM

I’m out in Woodinville, but still in a light polluted neighborhood. Last week I was viewing with my 10” reflector, looking mostly near Zenith due to all of the trees. I found M27 very easily, but M71 was barely detectable. I can’t get dark adapted, and my eye-site is no where near as good as it used to be. I’m not sure if I would have seen it at all in a 6” scope. 30 years ago our Seattle skies were much darker, and a 6” scope would show a lot more than today.

I'm in Woodinville too, so "Hi neighbor!"

My Z130 is 5inch (approx) but yeah if M71 is harder to see then it will be a challenge


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#21 KBHornblower

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:38 PM

Yeah - I am trying to practice star hopping. Obviously the tricky part is when either the next star or group of stars is out of the eyepiece view from the previous one, but I will get better !

Just hang in there. Star hopping is a skill that needs to be learned.  I learned how to do it the same way I learned to play my horn well enough to play professionally.  Practice, practice, practice!  The star hopping required far fewer hours of practicing.  As I write this I am waiting for M27 to move out from behind a tree.  The transparency is excellent and I can see Sagitta with my naked eyes despite the severe light pollution here in greater Washington.  With a 50mm finder it should be straightforward.


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#22 limeyx

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 10:53 PM

Just hang in there. Star hopping is a skill that needs to be learned.  I learned how to do it the same way I learned to play my horn well enough to play professionally.  Practice, practice, practice!  The star hopping required far fewer hours of practicing.  As I write this I am waiting for M27 to move out from behind a tree.  The transparency is excellent and I can see Sagitta with my naked eyes despite the severe light pollution here in greater Washington.  With a 50mm finder it should be straightforward.

Thanks. Definitely more practice. Tonight is really clouded over here but hopefully some clear skies during the week



#23 KBHornblower

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 11:41 PM

I attempted to star hop with the 6-inch f/8 Newtonian with its straight-through finder, and my 72-year-old neck could not take it.  I got out the Celestron 8 and mounted the Telrad and the 9x50 RACI finder, and I found M27 with relative ease.  My sky is about Bortle 8 or 9, but I could see Sagitta with my naked eyes in this surprise good transparency in what was predicted to be a cloudy night.  The finder showed plenty of stars for using a suitable finder chart.


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#24 gnowellsct

gnowellsct

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Posted 17 August 2020 - 06:44 AM

On a GEM m27 is easy. Point the scope to the nose of Sagitta and head exact due north, you fall right on it.

In alt az moving north is hard. But by putting in a wide field and trying to move to Polaris, I get there.

In binoculars it looks like a glowing chip. If M27 is hard to see I would consider that a hostile environment and stick to double stars, moon and planets.

GN

#25 MaknMe

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Posted 17 August 2020 - 10:32 AM

I watched the Eyes in the Skies video

https://youtu.be/8aUbT0wL5k0

and then walked out into my backyard and there it was.

I love his videos. If I am ever have trouble finding a new object, I just google Eyes on the Skies and the object. If he has a video on it, I can normally find the object within 15 mins of watching.
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