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Here's another one that will give you some tips on how to use a scope, and what to eexpect:

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/equipmen ... scope.html
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feral pig wrote:Here's a good article on choosing a telescope. There are a lot of options to consider.

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/equipmen ... page=1&c=y

I usually recommend the "Go-To" scopes. Once aligned, they track objects automatically and will locate objects for you, which takes a lot of the frustration out of observing. Just my opinion, though. As the article mentions, you can get a bigger objective (better optics) for the same price if you go with a simpler mount. Doesn't matter how good the optics are if you don't use it, though.


thanks man - will look into those. I hate to bail on my old telescope but it's such a PITA to site-in on something and almost-impossible for my young kids to view anything.
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venus passes in front of the sun today. 6:00pm est.
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Thanks Feral! =D> Post like this are what the interwebz can be about. =D>
I would encourage EVERY parent to view the universe with their kids. You're lives together with be enriched.
Plus, their isn't a big astronomy union.
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I have ready my auto-dim #15 welding shield and some extra eclipse glasses.
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Looks like the transit starts at 6:00pm eastern and will last several hours before it reaches the opposite side of the sun.

If you live in the center of the US, it will have made it about halfway across the sun just as the sun sets on the horizon. That's perfect because it's much easier to look at the sun when it's setting.

They also say this won't happen again with Venus until the year 2117.

Image
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So do you view this like an eclipse, with a paper and a hole through another piece of paper (or something like that)?
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Puking Dog wrote:So do you view this like an eclipse, with a paper and a hole through another piece of paper (or something like that)?


yes
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NASA's view guide is lame. Pinhole cameras totally suck and watching a shadow is just silly to me.

#12 shade welding shield is the bare min for enough protectiion. I'll be using variable shields set at 13 and another set at 12. I assume there will be a group of us on the roof.

#13 and #14 shade lenses are more comfortable, in that the darker the lense is easier on eye sensitivity.
http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observin ... page=1&c=y


The cheapo eclipse viewers, similar in structure/design to those cheapo 3-D glasses, will work. It's just a certain type of Mylar sheet, by Dupont. Mylar is also generically called PET. I do know whatever Mylar has to have an optical density of 5 or better to view the Sun. There is more than one type of Mylar/PET thats safe to use, but it's dependant on the PET color, coating(s), and thickness.

I would never just grap any piece of Mylar and start starting at the Sun. You need to KNOW the material specs to do it.


Lat time the transit occured, what, 2004, it was too cloudy. :(

Today looks to be perfect viewing conditions.
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I was planning to use binoculars mounted on a tripod projecting onto a white piece of cardboard, but it's pretty cloudy here and not looking promising at all. :(
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yeah just got overcast here. bummer.
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Just wait until sunset and then you can probably look at it directly. Venus starts to cross in front of the sun at 6:00pm eastern, but it will take many hours to make it across and it will still be in front of the sun as the sun is setting.
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I'll be at the ballpark as the sunsets this evening so hopefully I'll have a good view of it from 1st base.
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Im waiting to see it next time around. 8)
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The Solar Dynamics Observatory will be displaying live images for anyone interested...

http://venustransit.gsfc.nasa.gov/
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