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pkay
2007-Oct-18, 01:34 AM
Hi All

I am having a bit of trouble navigating with my 20X80 binos mounted on a tripod.

I first identify the constellation by eye and then try and find the brightest star through the binos. Using my 3 degree field of view I can work my way around at 3 degree intervals. This works for bright stars as the starting point, however when trying to locate dimmer stars of say Octans or Equuleus I just get lost! It gets really frustrating.

I could imagine it's only going to get harder when I invest in a telescope. (dont want a GOTO, finding things is the best part!).

Would a laser help (say mounted on the binos) or are there any other tricks?

Thanks in advance for help

Regards

Peter

tdvance
2007-Oct-18, 02:01 AM
A laser mounted and well-aligned with binocs would help, but so would practice. Try looking directly at the object and then bringing binocs up to your eyes, and try to sight along the binoculars--finding some part that is nearly straight. See how far off you are and try to adjust next time you sight. Also, practice with lower-power handheld binoculars--they are more forgiving.

Also, you could probably make some kind of sight for the binoculars too (sort of like a "unity finder").

astromark
2007-Oct-18, 07:45 AM
The go-to telescopes are good but, your point is right. It makes you lazy to find things and you learn little of where or how to find objects of interest. Your 20x80 bino's will serve you well. Have patients to find the objects. There is no rush. The green astronomy lasers work well and could with a little practice help you find your targets. The best advice for the beginner is to star hop... by the look of your post you know this method but need to practice. Good hunting.

Neverfly
2007-Oct-18, 07:52 AM
(snip) Your 20x80 bino's will serve you well. Have patients to find the objects. (snip).

However, be selective about the patients you have to find the objects you want to see.
Choose ones from, say, the broken leg wing at the local hospital.
It is best if you don't recruit from the nearby assylum.

astromark
2007-Oct-18, 09:02 AM
Not funny Neverfly; You know what I ment:(

aurora
2007-Oct-18, 01:34 PM
This might have been posted in the observing group instead of Q&A.

I know one person who has mounted a red dot finder to the top of his binos. That might work for the OP'er.

I do what someone else described, look at the object with the unaided eye, and then raise the binos into position.

Something else you can do, or will want to do, is practice star hopping while looking through your binos. Get a detailed sky chart or software, and use patterns of stars in your field of view to find where you are looking and then move slowly, make small jumps, toward your goal.

There are a number of books on star hopping. There are also a number of books on observing with binos.

Swift
2007-Oct-18, 04:42 PM
I do what someone else described, look at the object with the unaided eye, and then raise the binos into position.

I also do this with hand-held binocs (for both birds and stars) and it works well. But the OP was about a tripod mounted binoc - how do you do it then?

DyerWolf
2007-Oct-18, 06:38 PM
Not funny Neverfly; You know what I ment:(

As someone who regularly gets called out for my own spelling mistakes, I did have to chuckle:whistle:

Wee awl new wot ewe mend.:lol:

blueshift
2007-Oct-18, 07:24 PM
We have 20 X 80 Oberwerk binocs and what we usually do is start with the crescent moon and try to hit it dead center. Then we look away and find some part of our gear that is also lined right up and we check how far back from the tripod we are standing and measure the distance, recording a little different amount for each user.

Or, if we are having trouble, we do use the laser once in a while as long as no one else is imaging. It takes practice but if you keep at it you will likely find a better method. It might help to keep a log sheet complete with dates because you will position things a bit different at different times of the year. M44 seems so easy when it is west of me while trying my patience east of me. The double cluster is the easiest because you can just use simple ancient Greek math to locate its position.

Hope this helps a touch.

BTW, don't worry about spelling miscues. I once used the term "group therapy" when intending to say "group theory" in a discussion as an evening in the dark stretched into the wee hours of the morning.

Romanus
2007-Oct-18, 08:49 PM
A crude but effective method works for me: Knowing the binocular FOV, I use an astronomy program to find out exactly how many degrees my object is from some brighter reference object, note the direction, and then break that distance into fractional "binocular fields".

For example, if I know star X is 11.5 degrees east of bright star Y, and my FOV is 7 degrees, I move my FOV east such that Y is at the edge of the view, with X just another half FOV farther east. To make sure, I make a rough sketch of the star field and check it with my program or a star chart. If they match, I've found it.

Tucson_Tim
2007-Oct-18, 08:54 PM
I do what someone else described, look at the object with the unaided eye, and then raise the binos into position.


This technique works for me with my hand-held 7x50 binocs but it has to be more difficult with 20x80 binocs on a tripod.

Neverfly
2007-Oct-18, 10:06 PM
Not funny Neverfly; You know what I ment:(

yeah I did know what you meant but still, couldn't resist:p
You claim it wasn't funny.
Do you have evidence to support your theory?
Can you provide me with mathemtical charts and chemical analysis and prove that it is not?:p

aurora
2007-Oct-19, 02:47 PM
I also do this with hand-held binocs (for both birds and stars) and it works well. But the OP was about a tripod mounted binoc - how do you do it then?

Well, what I do is look at the object, and then raise the binos into position.

It doesn't really matter if you are observing hand held or on a tripod.

Why would it?

Tucson_Tim
2007-Oct-19, 02:50 PM
Well, what I do is look at the object, and then raise the binos into position.

It doesn't really matter if you are observing hand held or on a tripod.

Why would it?

How do you "raise the binocs into position" if they are mounted on a tripod?

John Mendenhall
2007-Oct-19, 05:16 PM
(snip)

You claim it wasn't funny.
Do you have evidence to support your theory?
Can you provide me with mathemtical charts and chemical analysis and prove that it is not?

:p

That's funny.

Kaptain K
2007-Oct-20, 02:39 AM
How do you "raise the binocs into position" if they are mounted on a tripod?
Most camera tripods have an adjustable center post.

aurora
2007-Oct-20, 04:30 PM
Most camera tripods have an adjustable center post.

And, the mount has a way to aim the binos up and down, right?

If that is too difficult, then do the other thing I suggested, mount an inexpensive red dot finder to the binos.

mugaliens
2007-Oct-21, 04:19 PM
I bought a pair of light-amplifying binocs in 1989. Tascos. Have used them ever since, and have really enjoyed the studying a section of sky before bringing them to my eyes and [B]BAM[/B}

The stars come out.

Cool. As in way.