Reply To: Introduction


Mark Galvin

Hi Andy, welcome to the LAS website :-)

Yes, please do both come along on Wednesday, and bring the scope with you.

I think you’ve gone the best route possible with not getting a super expensive telescope as your son’s first, and your son has made a wise decision too with not wanting an automated (commonly known as a “Go To”) scope to learn with. Doing it all manually helps a lot when starting out. It’s wonderful to be able to stick the name of a planet into a keypad and have the scope point itself, but it’s no substitute for learning to navigate the sky, recognising constellations and so on. To add to that, telescopes with those systems need some careful setting up to ensure that they work properly, and without the “manual” knowledge behind it, can be more frustrating in the long run.

You might like to show your son the free Stellarium software too –
This is essentially a planetarium on your computer. You set up your location, and it will show you what’s visible right now.

There’s not a lot to see in the way of planets in the early night sky over the next few months, but the moon is a great target and a lot easier for starting off with, and of course there are myriad stars of various kinds, plus things like the Pleiades cluster and the Orion Nebula. A 5″ aperture like that on the 130EQ is a good balance for planetary and some of the brighter nebulae, galaxies and star clusters.

Hope you both have many years of enjoyment from the hobby!


Arthur Dent: "But what is it? What’s worth a statue fifteen miles high? "
Bird: "It was of great symbolic importance to our ancestors, it’s called ’Arthur Dent Throwing the Nutrimatic Cup’. "
Arthur: "Sorry, what did you say?"

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