By Dave Fuller on 12/30/2015 10:41 AM
Don't give up! Telescopes seem like they are easy to use - just point it generally where you think the object is you want to see, and it should be visible in the eyepiece, right? I mean, that's what we do with our phones and cameras - just point it, and "Boom!" - there it is!!

So why isn't a telescope so simple? What are you doing wrong? 

There's a few things that beginners may not realize they're doing. Here's how to find things more easily with a telescope your first time out. 

1) Make sure the mount and tripod are steady

This is easy to overlook, but it is VERY important. Your telescope only shows a very narrow slice of the sky, even at low power. Keep in mind, if you drew a line from horizon to horizon, that is 180 degrees. Your telescope only shows 1/180th of that line, at low power. So even very small movements of the tripod or mount will appear to be HUGE changes in the eyepiece! Think about zooming in a camera all the way, without using a steadying feature to smooth out your...

The Nightlight

This blog includes what to see in the night and daytime skies, thoughts on telescopes, binoculars, and other astronomy observing accessories and equipment, plus my own occasional notes on objects I've seen and observed. Oh, and the random theater or other "my take on life" post. In other words, there is always something interesting. Check it out.