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First time Observing - Is this actually legit?

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I’ve only been using a telescope for a couple weeks now. Just getting into it. Found this forum via Google. I have a 3ish inch (70x800mm) telescope. The moon is the first thing I looked at and I think I have the hang of that. So I moved on to what I think is Sirius? (According to SkyView app/big blue star in sky Google searc) 


I attempted to take a picture of what I saw and have attached it to this post. Just wondering if this looks like what it should look like with a 25mm lens?


Any tips in general? The pictures are pretty bad, but just imagine I saw that but a full blue circle , still working on getting my mount to work LOL


Thank you for any info and advice you provide in advance! I’m pretty excited but a bit clueless, as what I see doesn’t look like what I see in Google images. 






Edited by tryonlinux
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it’s very difficult to understand what is the object from your pictures, however I think you may find the website at the link below very useful.


it’s a simulator for a telescope so basically you can add the diameter of your lens and it gives you what you should see in terms of size from your scope




If you can post more details of your scope I can even try to add them to the simulator and see what is the result.


I hope the above will help you.




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Trying to take photos is not a simple task and even if you had it bang in the middle of the field of view it would be impossible to tell you if this was Sirius as you need to know where it is in the sky in relation to others things around it.  


Sirius is the brightest visual star in the night sky and is found by location Orion constellation.  Orion is in the West this time of year and is quite unmissable by have 4 bright stars in a vertical rectangle with 3 stars crossing the middle.  (Orion's belt).  If you follow the 3 belt stars to the left and continue further you will reach Sirius.




The most useful tool you can use is Stellerium, it is a free download.  Set it for your location and it will tell you "what is up" and where it is right now.  (You can also alter it temporarily if you wish to see what it up at other times dates and locations) in case you want to see what is in the sky when you go on holiday for instance.



If you tell us what scope and mount you have we may be able to assist you further.



Edited by Carastro
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Hi @tryonlinux, good advice for you above. Your focal length is moderately long so trying to centre a specific star will be a challenge until you get used to it. You will need to use your finder scope/red dot etc. to help get into the general vicinity, and then use your main scope and the slow-motion controls to fine tune it. Any star, no matter how big it is, will be nothing more than a point of light in your scope. So Sirius will not be a blue disc, just a bright star! Even Hubble can't resolve a star into a disk.

If this is Sirius, then the next thing to check is your focus. Out-of-focus stars will look like a disk or a donut. If you've already managed to focus on the moon, try not to touch the focuser as you rotate the scope to a star. Some focusers have a locking lever that helps.

Let us know which telescope/mount you have, and we might be able to give more advice.

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On 4/3/2021 at 11:12 AM, Padraic M said:

Even Hubble can't resolve a star into a disk.








The image was taken in ultraviolet light with the Faint Object Camera on March 3, 1995.


But sadly you need something much bigger than an amateur scope to achieve this. There are a few scopes that can:



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  • 3 weeks later...

Woha awesome advice everyone! Sorry for the late reply, I thought it would email me when someone replied LOL.


@gabs Love that site! It was very informative and helpful to see what things looked like by telescope size, thank for that and advice!  


@Carastro thanks for the app idea and advice, I'll gave it a download, very cool! 


@Padraic M / @Stub Mandrel @MarkAR : After reading everything, I would 100% agree. I knew it was too good to be true haha. I remember using a 16 inch diameter telescope in college, and now thinking back to that, even it didn't get a good view of Sirius either LOL, but that was 10+ years ago and was an intro class...


Thank you all very much for your advice, it is well constructed and informative, I really do appreciate it all, this forum is quite kind to a 100% newbie! 🙂 Thanks! 


Oh and if curious my telescope is a TASCO Spacestation 70x800mm Refractor AZ. I got it for free from a health bonus, it is quite amazing to look at the moon with, so even if I can't see distance objects, I'm quite impressed with the moon, it was quite cool! 





Phone Mount:

Celestron NexYZ 3-Axis Universal Smartphone Adapter

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 4/24/2021 at 6:28 PM, MarkAR said:

Depending on what eyepieces came with the scope, it might be worthwhile picking up a Plossel eyepiece or two second hand.


+1, a 30mm Plossl will be dirt cheap and be a big step up if you look for star clusters and, say, the Andromeda Galaxy.


Also, search for "23mm aspheric eyepiece" and "10mm aspheric eyepiece". These are stupidly cheap* and remarkably good.


The 4mm version is less good, apparently.




*This has obviously been noticed, I found the 23mm at over £20, it cost me less than a tenner to buy both. Though they are not as good as £100 eyepieces they seem better than most £30 ones.



Edited by Stub Mandrel
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