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Old 29-09-2011, 12:00 PM
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Rob_K is offline
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Bright, Vic, Australia
Posts: 2,125
I'll just copy some of my stuff across from the other thread:

For really faint objects on the limits of detectability (rather than faint details in galaxies) where I might get odd flickerings of something in the position, I usually repeat the process in another or even several parts of the field. You quite often get a similar response. Sometimes when you move your eyes back to the target position you get a much stronger response that can be held in averted vision even if intermittently, almost like the exercise sharpened your vision. But if I get the same flickerings of something (all too often!), I'm fairly satisfied that I'm not seeing anything other than a trick of the eye. You really have to hold it, even briefly.

Spending time is essential, and movement helps greatly (tap the eyepiece or jiggle the controls). Provided your eyes are fully light-adapted, I find that coming back to the field later on in the observing session doesn't help all that much unless there is a change in transparency, because you have to pretty much repeat the teasing-out process all over again. May as well spend quality time first-up.

Generally: find a dark place and shield any extraneous light (eg put street lights behind trees). Get light-adapted - never go for really faint objects first. Have (generate) charts that position a faint object precisely in the field - as part of pre-planning pick 'asterisms' or star alignments that you will be able to recognise in the FOV (eg a little triangle of stars or a line of four stars etc etc). Above all, have fun.

While increasing magnification may help by increasing contrast, in a little scope like mine it doesn't generally work - not enough light. Things just disappear!

Anyway, some great tips, thanks to those who've posted. Must admit though, this tip by Doug Snyder has me a little confused!

"double averted vision ( you back off from the eyepiece a little, cross your eyes and let each of your eyes view the opposite edge of the field)"

What if the wind changes?

Cheers -
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