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Thread: star hopping

  1. #1
    Max's Avatar
    Max Guest

    Default star hopping

    I am wondering how popular star hopping is nowadays among amateur
    astronomers as a technique to find objects in the sky. Certainly the
    advent of GoTo telescopes have made star hopping less important than
    before (at least until people find out that GoTo scopes are not all
    that easy to use properly after all :-) ), but I know several people
    who are still doing star hopping and enjoying it!

    What's your experience in this regard?


  2. #2
    Mick's Avatar
    Mick Guest

    Default star hopping

    "Max" <> wrote in message

    Star hopping is a lousy term. It's so 'touchy feely" and I wish it never
    was invented. However, the method of locating stars and/or DSO's from star
    or maps and applying this to testing your ability to recognize patterns in
    the sky and in your
    view finder or binocs is a rewarding experience. The GO TO has it's place
    too if you
    want instant gratification.

  3. #3
    rat ~(    );>'s Avatar
    rat ~( );> Guest

    Default star hopping

    Max wrote:

    I am an active proponent of learning the sky and finding objects to
    observe manually.

    ~( );>

  4. #4
    Martin R. Howell's Avatar
    Martin R. Howell Guest

    Default star hopping

    On 28 Aug 2005 19:48:57 -0700, Max wrote:

    I star hop (starhop, star-hop, whatever.) I also use setting circles.
    Sometimes I use my big dob's PushTo digital setting circle thingies while
    other nights will find me going out under the night sky, seeing something
    naked-eye interesting, and then examining it further with either binos or
    one of my scopes.

    Its the full meal deal.

    Martin R. Howell
    "Photographs From the Universe of Amateur Astronomy"

  5. #5
    Marty's Avatar
    Marty Guest

    Default star hopping

    I've always been a starhopper, and I suspect I always will be. I love
    the constellations, and learned them before I had any desire to own a
    telescope. For me, the hunt is a large part of the fun.

  6. #6
    Mij Adyaw's Avatar
    Mij Adyaw Guest

    Default star hopping

    Agreed! Half of the fun is hunting for the object. I feel that it is much
    more of an accomplishment to observe an object after hunting than have a
    goto scope point you to it. I am not against goto scopes, however I also
    believe that folks should learn to do simple math before being allowed to
    use a calculator.


    "rat ~( );>" <> wrote in message

  7. #7
    SkySea's Avatar
    SkySea Guest

    Default star hopping

    My main scope is a fork-mounted C14, so I don't have any choice but to
    star hop. Fortunately, I happen to enjoy it very much. I find it very
    satisfying to know how to correlate charts with the sky, learn the
    sky, and instill a bit inspiration in others when it's shown that
    seemingly invisible objects can be located withing seconds, or at
    most, a minute or two.

    I also have a NextStar 5 that I think of as more of a toy. It's cute,
    and it spins around to find stuff (slowly). Very dramatic, very fun,
    kind of noisy.

    On 28 Aug 2005 19:48:57 -0700, "Max" <> wrote:

  8. #8
    David Nakamoto's Avatar
    David Nakamoto Guest

    Default star hopping

    I'm mainly a star hopper. I have used a GOTO, but that was for objects that
    seemed to be in difficult to hop areas, containing too many stars, and/or not
    enough bright stars.

    I'd probably be happier using GOTO if the controls were better engineered. I
    have an idea to make them easier, but since I'm unemployed and hoping
    Celestron's recent sale to Syntha will provide enough influx of money to hire
    more engineers, I want to keep my idea close to the vest for now.

    --- Dave
    Pinprick holes in a colorless sky
    Let inspired figures of light pass by
    The Mighty Light of ten thousand suns
    Challenges infinity, and is soon gone

    "Max" <> wrote in message

  9. #9
    Hilton Evans's Avatar
    Hilton Evans Guest

    Default star hopping

    "Mick" <> wrote in message news:7QuQe.216505$tt5.156922@edtnps90...

    Go To has its place in DSO astroimaging which
    hardly gives *instant* gratification.


    Hilton Evans
    Lon -71° 04' 35.3"
    Lat +42° 11' 06.7"
    Webcam Astroimaging
    ChemPen Chemical Structure Software

  10. #10's Avatar Guest

    Default star hopping

    I enjoy just going out with a telescope and maybe some charts or a Palm
    Handheld running Planetarium and PleiadAtlas. Look around, find some
    old friends, wander around a bit, look for something new.

    I have had 4 different GOTO setups in the last few years, the last is
    an 8 inch F5 Newt on a ASGT mount. I have had it 4 or 5 months, I used
    it twice when I first got it but since then, it just sits and I will
    get rid of it soon. It works, does what it is supposed to, it just
    doesn't get it for me. It's like a motor on a bicycle, it's fine if
    you want a motor on your bicycle, but I prefer the exercise and
    pleasure just riding along...

    "Starhopping", I think it is an appropriate term, I hop around the
    heavens using stars as guide posts, hopping from one to the next....

    Jon Isaacs


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